I was a minor-league coach for a Little League team of 9- and 10-year-olds in the Avenues. I regularly witnessed and protested behavior by coaches who had "win-at-all-cost" attitudes. I decided to quit, to make a stand for the innocent children who play this wonderful game. I sent the league a statement on behalf of these young ballplayers. My statement to the board members was never addressed.
Baseball, a game I loved from 5 to 18 years of age, used to be such a sacred game to me. But I can't be a part of a negative and destructive sports culture. There was a reason I got out of the game at age 18 that I had forgotten. It all came back to haunt me when I started to coach this season. The mean-spiritedness, disrespect and bullying by coaches, the apathy of parents — all those things that ruined the game for me are still having a negative impact on the children. What behavior are we modeling for our children? Our kids should love the game. It should be fun, right?
Salt Lake City