El Dorado Springs Bulldogs Parent/Player Handbook
- Develop self-confidence in the individual and faith in your teammates
- Practice to be perfect
- Play with enthusiasm and passion
- Compete to win in every game
- District Championship, Final Four, State Championship
- Leave a mark in El Dorado Springs Baseball History as a team and an individual
- Graduate from high school
- Learn the qualities that will lead to success in life through baseball
The coaching staff expects the following:
- Each player should do the best he can at all times and in all areas.
- Each player should base all decisions on moral principles.
- Each player should treat others the way they wish to be treated.
- Each player should strive to be the type of person you can trust.
The players can expect the following from the coaching staff:
1. The coaching staff will base all decisions on what is best for the team, and then what is best for the individual.
2. The coaching staff will be loyal to all players in all areas.
3. The coaching staff will be honest.
4. The coaching staff will be consistently fair to all players.
5. The coaching staff will help put you in a position to reach your goals.
Criteria for Team Selection
We feel it is most important that you understand how we decide on our team. The following four criteria will be used.
1. Knowledge of assignments. We cannot and will not play people who do not know their assignments. I will spend extra time with you if you so desire. Everyone can and should know their assignments.
2. Hustle. We expect everyone to hustle in all phases of the game. Hustling is on thing that you can control.
3. Contribution to the overall team. Baseball is a team game played through individual battles. The individual who can win each battle, lead by example, and help the team succeed in all phases is very valuable to the team. Individuals who can play more than one position well are also very valuable. Everyone can be a team player.
4. Talent. If the above criteria are equal, then the individual who has the most talent and plays the most consistently will make the team. However, having talent without the first three qualities will not get you on the team. Talent is the last of the criteria.
Everyone has the same opportunity to earn a position on the team. The above was written out so you know how we evaluate you. An individual who is strong in the first three qualities will help the team be more successful than an individual who just has talent. Deciding the team roster is very difficult. Our main concern is to be honest and fair with each of you. Remember, we are here for the same reasons:
1. See that you graduate from El Dorado Springs High School.
2. See that you mature and grow as a man.
3. See that we have a baseball team that can consistantly compete for championships.
BULLDOG BASEBALL RESPONSIBILITIES
Bulldog players and families need to have a heightened awareness of the importance of timeliness in all aspects of baseball participation.
Bulldog players and families need to take pride in being good sports. Our objectives are to maintain a reputation of hard-nosed competitive players with a great amount of respect for the game, our opponent, their families, and the officials. No one outside of ourselves controls or inhibits the development or ability to reach our goals. During and after every contest, we will show respect for all parties involved.
Bulldog players and families need to have the ability to maintain their poise in the heat of the game. They do not demonstrate anger or disgust when they strike out, make an error, or get a bad call. Such demonstrations only distract us from the game. Baseball is a game of failure. We need to understand that it is not what happened to us, but what we do about it that makes the difference between success and failure. Play the game with enthusiasm and passion.
Bulldog players and families should understand the importance of self-discipline. Self-discipline is a characteristic of successful individuals in all aspects of life including sports. The ability to make sacrifices necessary to achieve greatness is only possible through self-motivation and the discipline to achieve even the smallest goal. The ability to maintain your focus on the objective regardless of the distractions takes a self-disciplined individual.
Tobacco, Alcohol, Supplements, and Illegal Drugs
Bulldog players are expected to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Supplements need to be checked with the coaching staff before use. MSHSAA has very strict policies on all supplements. Tobacco, Alcohol, and Illegal Drugs present severe health risks, even if used only once. If a player wishes to gain strength, speed, or weight, please seek advice from the coaching staff and your family doctor.
Bulldog players are expected to attend and participate in all team events. Two team events for an unexcused reason is cause for dismissal. Please alert the coaching staff in advance if you have to miss a team event.
Bulldog players need to understand that many people, whether right or wrong, make a first impression on your appearance and never give you a second chance. Because of that, you need to look neat and presentable especially when traveling. It is recommended that players do not sport full beards as many scouts and talent evaluators determine this means that a player has reached his maximum potential physically.
Bulldog players will be students first. Baseball is secondary to your academics. Poor performances (discipline or grade) in the classroom will lead to severe consequences within the baseball program. There will be required tutoring time for players with grades under 70%. That will need to be scheduled with the coaching staff. If needed, a mandatory Study Hall may be implemented. I encourage players to attempt to qualify for Academic All-State. This is a very prestigious award and is designed to celebrate your academic success. To be eligible, players must start in 70% of games, mantain a 3.5 GPA, and be in the top 20% of your class.
Athletic Department Policy
The Athletic Department Policy trumps our policies.
If a Bulldog player has a problem with any of the above, he may be benched for a game(s) and/or physically and/or mentally conditioned. It will be the coach’s decision based on what is best for the team and the individual at the current junction of the season.
THE BULLDOG PARENT
You have a life-long involvement in all aspects of the development of your son. The hours you have spent with your son have put him in the position to have an opportunity to meet so many of the goals he now desires. Without your part in the process, all of the teachers, coaches, and other influences on your son could never play the role necessary to help him reach his goals.
As with any program, it is important to reaffirm the critical role parents play in a successful program. Success is only possible because of the support of the parents in the program that allows coaches to work on the field. The following is a list of characteristics of past parents that have been essential in making baseball teams successful. Remember, your son needs you to be a parent first, and a coach second.
As team sports go, baseball is one of the most intensely team-conscious. Teams consist of nine players who are unique in their individual capabilities and yet single-minded in their combined delivery of fundamental skills. Errors are present every game although no one is trying to make a mistake. The team and individual performances will improve if parents and players realize no one is deliberately performing poorly. Errant throws, missed plays, strikeouts, walks, etc. are unintentional. Players must be taught this aspect of the game if they are to ever excel at the sport. Athletes must be taught hopeful anticipation instead of focusing on the preceding error. Acceptance of the inevitable errors is vital components of playing the game of baseball, but it is difficult for these traits to take root in young players when the adults around them fail to set the example. We ask the parents to refrain from criticizing the opposing players, other parents, and especially a teammate of their own child. Be respectful of others and you will help produce a better athlete.
Parents are encouraged to continue to work with their son. We are blessed with parents that continue to motivate and develop their sons. They understand their work is supplementary to the high school program. They also realize that we all want the same thing from your son. That is to see his dreams come true.
You have all seen a parent that coached his son from the stands, bleachers, or from behind the fences surrounding the field. You have all seen a parent make hand or verbal signals. These efforts from off the field will likely detract from your son’s performance on the field even if they are designed to help him improve.
In our infinite spectator enthusiasm, we are often prone to issue several instructions to the players that are contrary to those of the coach, much to the confusion of the players. Please let the athletes listen to their coach. This is not meant to squelch spectator enthusiasm, as your child will love your encouragement. Just try to ignore mistakes you will likely see, and do not interfere with your son’s coach, especially during the game.
Parents in the Dugout
Make sure your son has everything he needs before he gets to the field so there is no reason to visit the inside of the dugout before or during the games. Our team needs full concentration on the game; your presence often becomes a distraction for your son. Players will be given time between games to talk with parents and get food, water, etc.
The learning curve for the athlete to develop into the player he desires is steep and difficult at times to understand. The parent of the athlete may have an even more difficult task in adjusting to the learning curve.
The strength of many programs has been the trust that the coaches will make the right decisions to develop each player to his potential. If the coaches spend all of their time talking to parents to reassure them of the basic premises we agreed upon in the beginning of the relationship, it cuts into the time that could be spent developing our players. If a situation developed that needs to be addressed, it has to be handled in a professional manner, and not in the grandstands.
AWARDS AND RECOGNITION
A Varsity Letter will be earned by an individual who starts and completes one varsity game or plays an average of 2 innings per regular season contest.
*The following policy is being considered by the athletic department to determine a if a player letters in baseball: A varsity letter will be earned by an individual who plays in one-half of the varsity contests.
The players with the best statistics will be nominated for all-conference, all-state, and other awards. Please understand these awards are voted on by other coaches and sportswriters, and their decisions are final. If I could, I would nominate all my players for every award.
Locker Room, Weight Room and Equipment
The equipment you use during practice and games belongs to the baseball program. It is your responsibility to make sure that it is taken care of so that it looks good and it lasts.
The locker room is a place for you to keep your gear safe and neat. Keep the locker room clean. Do not wear your spikes in any building. Keep our equipment picked up and placed neatly in the closet. Each player will be assigned a locker.
The weight room is where we gain strength and flexibility. Make sure that all weights are put up after you use them. Get in the weight room and get your work done. The weight room is no place for horseplay.
Do not be afraid to get your hands dirty. If you arrive early at the field, start setting up for practice. This will allow practice to start sooner.
We take great pride in the way our field looks. It is your responsibility to make it look great every day.
Some things that you can do everyday:
- Pick up rocks
- Pick up trash
- Make sure that all screens and nets get put back neatly.
- Get out any field maintenance equipment that needs to be done.
- Play catch and do drills in different areas in the outfield.
- Rake your area to keep it playing well.
- Hustle everywhere you go, we can get more done in less time.
- Always make sure the baseballs are put away.
- Don’t throw equipment at any time, show respect to the game.
- Don’t ask what time it is, if you have somewhere you need to be, turn in your uniform and do whatever you want.
- See the coach with any problems or complaints. Communication is vital.
- Address teammates and coaches in a respectful manner.
- Wear a hat, long pants, and shirts with sleeves to all practices. Dress according to the weather.
- For the time we are at the field, focus on baseball only. Let go of all your other worries and use the game as an escape.
- Do your field work assignments after practice.
Injuries and Sickness
All injuries that occur during practice or a game should be reported to the coach immediately. This will insure that the proper treatment can be initiated as soon as possible. If you are unable to attend practice because of an injury, personally let the coach know during the school day. If you have an injury that requires you to miss time you are still expected to be at the field and supporting your teammates unless other arrangements are made by you and your coaching staff.
If a player is sick on a game day, please let me know before noon. This will allow the team to prepare for the game knowing that they will not have that player available.
If a player needs treatment for an injury or taping prior to a practice or a game, get it done. This is not to be used as an excuse for being late. Allow yourself the time to get the treatment.
If a player is out of action due to sickness or injury, they are still required to attend all team functions, practice sessions, and games.
Our primary purpose on road trips is to win baseball games. It is a way for us to go into a different area and show we can compete at a high level. To do this, we must be physically and mentally ready to play. It is important that you get plenty of rest and take care of your body.
- You are representing one of the finest baseball programs in the state of Missouri. Be proud of that and conduct yourself in a first class manner at all times.
- Team rules still apply. Road trips should be fun and educational, but our objective is to win.
- At all times, be courteous to waiters, waitresses, and other motel/restaurant employees.
- The coaching staff makes roommate selection.
- No long distance phone calls are made from your room. Do it from a cell phone. Absolutely no in-room movies.
- Your rooms are to be kept clean and neat at all times.
- Do not order room service without prior approval from the coaching staff.
- Dress neatly and be well groomed.
- Assigned dress will be worn at times.
All players must ride to the game on the team bus unless prior approval is received from the coaching staff and the athletic director’s office.
Game Day Responsibilities
This is the day you have worked for. Enjoy it. All announcements regarding pre-game and game assignments will be made before the game. Know when you are hitting, where you are playing, what you are charting, etc.
- Never lose your poise.
- No arguing with or looking down upon an umpire.
- Don’t talk to your opponents in a derogatory manner. You beat your opponent with your bat, ball, or glove, not with your mouth.
- Encourage your teammates.
- Remember that momentum is always coming at you. Don’t get discouraged if the breaks don’t go our way, they will even out.
- Always play with enthusiasm, enjoy playing the game.
- Always hustle on and off the field.
- Don’t throw equipment.
Our goal is to win one game at a time. In order to do this, enjoy competing in each individual battle. Treat every situation as a battle (hitter vs. pitcher and fielder vs. runner). The more battles we win in the game, the better our chances of winning the game.
Things to remember when talking to the press: (paper, radio, and internet)
- Don’t compare, knock, or criticize your opponent, only praise them.
- Be confident but not boastful, always let another praise you.
- Give credit to your teammates.
- Never pass up the opportunity to praise your opponent or your teammates.
- Do not take your complaints to the press; discuss them with the coach.
- Do not say anything about what we do technically, like signs or other communication.
- Do not say anything that would help our opponent or end up on their bulletin board.
- Be kind and courteous to the newsperson, win or lose.
- When a newsperson makes an appointment, be on time.
It is a credit to you and the program whenever we receive publicity. My job is to shoulder your failures and promote your success.
Summer and Fall baseball was started to allow individuals the opportunity to improve their baseball skills. Although it is not mandatory to play baseball in the summer or fall to make the spring team, I would encourage everyone to play in both seasons. The goals of the summer/fall seasons are as follows:
1. Improve individual skills.
2. Become a better teammate.
3. Understand the philosophy behind the game.
4. Learn from other coaches and players.
5. Have fun.
If an individual doesn’t participate in summer/fall baseball programs, he needs to be playing another sport. Every sport has its rewards and can lead to success on the field in baseball. Players who opt to play baseball will put together a yearly calendar composed of the spring season, summer instruction/competition, fall workouts, and winter conditioning.
Playing College Baseball
If it is your dream to play college and professional baseball, then we will help you realize these dreams. But the athlete must take the initiative and put in the work required to play collegiately. Here are some guidelines to follow:
1. While in high school, play the highest level of baseball possible during the summer and attend college camps in the summer and winter to gain exposure.
2. Improve your grades.
3. Starting in the fall of your junior year, write or call the coach of the colleges that you would like to attend.
5. Take the ACT or SAT at least twice.
6. Fill out and return all questionnaires sent to you by colleges.
7. Do not reject any interested colleges too early in the recruiting process.
8. Visit colleges that you are interested in attending and learn as much as you can about the academics and the baseball program.
9. Stay in touch with colleges that you want to attend. Certain organizations limit when a coach can call, and how many times they can call, so it is up to you to stay in touch.
10. The coaching staff also recommends players to college coaches. Make sure you keep them informed about what colleges are interested in you and what colleges you are interested in.
11. If it is your desire to play college baseball, find a college and a baseball program that you like and play for them. Do not base your decisions on scholarship money or the size of the college. Remember, you go to college to get an education and build for a strong, sound future. If you are good enough, then the professional scouts will find you. If you are not, then have a career to fall back on.
12. Do the work. You will not get an opportunity to play collegiately if you do not want to work hard. Get into the weight room and work hard. Get into the batting cage and get extra reps. Get out to the field in the off season and strengthen your arm. You may only get one chance to impress a scout and if you aren’t prepared or ready, you may miss that chance.