Saturday, April 08, 2006

Baseball looms large again, so the baseball posts will resume.

Actually, we're already a week into girls' softball season as well, so I'll have posts about that, too.

This evening I went to the field to set the pitcher's rubber in place. A team started practice while I was lining things up and I hoped that they might offer to help. Instead, they started practice all around me while I strung lines from home plate to the pitchers' mound and the manager actually had the temerity to complain to me about the amount of dirt on the mound while one of his coaches batted balls past me. I have some history with that particular manager and just ignored him (the alternative would have been telling him to get stuffed. He's a 400+ lb., 5' 5" tall jerk with red hair and a beard who looks exactly like a garden gnome. I detest him for good reason {he screwed me hard one day last year} but I figure it's no way to start off a new season). I finally got hacked off and left the field with the rubber barely in place. I had to take a wheelbarrow to another field, anyway.

I got back after practice, and the team had ignored the fact that the rubber was only half in place and had stomped on it until one of the anchoring spikes migrated upward through the rubber, ruining it.

I got the last new rubber and dug the site out, put new clay in it, leveled it out and emplaced the new rubber. I hope garden gnome notices it and appreciates it, but I suspect that's waaaay too much to ask for.

On the other side, the Bear has a softball game at 0900. Granddad is coming up for it, so the Bear is psyched. Her games are a bit frenetic--nine-year old girls chasing after balls, but their team spirit and fortitude can't be matched. I get a huge charge out of their games.

Baseball kicks off at 1200. I'll be there by 1130 to hand out balls, and to make sure that the flag gets raised. I'm kind of funny about that. There will be a flag flying over the field as we play ball.

Got a call tonight asking me to umpire two games as well. I didn't return the call as it came in after 10:00 and I was busy with kids, but I'll return it tomorrow. I feel badly for the guy--he's doing the same job I had last year and I know first hand how horrible the job is. I really hadn't planned on being an umpire this year since I'm the junior/senior league commissioner, but I'm feeling pulled to fill in. I will, though, use one tactic I learned from an umpire last summer. He'd line the coaches up and read the riot act to them ending with "You get two warnings, and this was the first one".

It's gonna be a good, fun season. Baseball and softball.

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