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Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Baseball Parent - Make Your Kid a Major League MVP
By Nick Dixon
I know that the title got your attention. Everyone knows and respects the Major League Baseball players like Derek Jeter, Albert Pujols, Alex Rodriguez and Manny Ramirez. Many parents dream of having their little league player growing up to play college baseball, becoming a college all-American, going to Omaha and play in the College World Series, being drafted in the 1st round of the MLB draft, signing for a 2.5 million dollar signing bonus, being voted to the MLB All-star team, going 3 for 4 in the All-Star Game, having their team win the pennant, wining the league championship, playing in the MLB World Series, leading MLB in RBI, Homeruns, Stolen Bases, Pitching Wins and also being selected as the Cy Young award winner, being named MVP of the MLB World Series, signing a deal with Nike Shoe for 2 million a year to endorse their new line of baseball shoes, and finally getting voted into Cooperstown Hall of Fame on his first vote. That is the ultimate dream of a baseball parent. But, do you know and realize how small the actual percentage is of little league baseball parents that ever see that dream come true? Now, I need to get to the point. Just helping your kid become a solid little league player that loves and enjoys the game of baseball should be the goal of every baseball parent. Here I discuss what I feel are the major requirements for big time baseball success at every level.
Odds are stacked against the little league baseball player and the youth baseball player when it comes to playing college and major league baseball. Less than 1 out every 15 kids playing little league and youth baseball ever make their high school baseball's varsity team. It is a known fact that less than 10.1 percent of all high school varsity baseball players go on to play college baseball. That figure includes both scholarship and walk-on players. Just 1 out of every 936 high school players is drafted to Pro Baseball each year. What all of this adds up to is this statement that says it all. Less than 1 out of every 15,000 little league or youth baseball players ever make a MLB baseball team. In, fact the percentage may be much lower when you consider the fact that less than 20,000 players have played MLB baseball in its 130+ year history. Chances are good, if your child is playing Little League, Dixie Youth, Babe Ruth or Cal Ripkin baseball, you are expecting your child to try out for the high school baseball team one day.
What does it take to make the high school team? The main three things are body build, playing skill, and pure luck.
THE IMPORTANCE OF BODY BUILD IN BASEBALL
I know that many of you are saying "Body Build" is not very important in baseball. I know and realize that size and height are less important in baseball than basketball and football. You do not have to block or tackle to play baseball. Baseball is not a game played in the rafters of a gym. But, "Body Build" is not all about body size to me. When I talk about "Body build", I mean more than height and size. Body build to me includes all of the results of a player's work and training to build strength, stamina, endurance, power and speed. The players that dominate at each level are the ones that have the dominate bat speed, dominate pitch velocity, and the faster feet.
THE IMPORTANCE OF SKILL DEVELOPMENT IN BASEBALL
The next important key to becoming a great high school, college or major league baseball player is playing skill development. If you are going to get to the next level, you have got to learn to play the game! Personal instruction by a baseball hitting coach, baseball pitching coach, and great baseball instruction and teaching of baseball fundamentals, early in youth baseball, are so important to baseball skill building. Many advanced players today rely on baseball indoor hitting facilities, year round baseball training and travel baseball that's played all year. These things help, but the main thing is for a player and his parent to take an interest in the game and become students of the game. You have got to do your baseball homework if you are going to maximize baseball skill development. Baseball homework is that extra work you do in the off-season and at home year round. Your baseball homework many include a backyard pitching mound, a backyard batting cage, baseball training equipment, or one-on-one training with a baseball instructor.
THE IMPORTANCE OF LUCK IN BASEBALL
Many people do not believe in luck. They say luck has nothing to do with winning or success. They say luck is made in practice time. Many others have a different opinion, they say that it is better to be lucky than to be good. I have a different attitude toward luck. I know that we are all lucky to get a chance to grow up in such a great country and to play such a great game as baseball, but I am talking about a different kind of luck a player must have to succeed in baseball. A player must be lucky and get top quality coaching early in life! Fate is a better word for what I am talking about. It is good luck that a player gets chosen on a little league team with a coach that takes special interest in a player and dedicates a great amount of time and energy in making that player better. It is good luck for a youth player to have a parent or coach that knows how to motivate and inspire that kid to keep working and practicing to get better. Players are extremely lucky to have the right inspiration and instruction during their childhood playing days. The coach they have may be a streak of good or bad luck depending on the attitude and competence level of the coach. Getting the right coach is a great stroke of luck!
Yes, I believe body build, playing skill and luck are the 3 keys to high school baseball success. Good luck to your child and his or her team. Happy Hitting, Coach Nick.
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Nick Dixon is the President and founder of Nedco Sports, the "Hit2win Company". Dixon is also an active and full time high school baseball coach with over 25 years experience. Dixon is widely recognized as an expert in the area of baseball training, practice and skill development. Coach Dixon is better known as the inventor of several of baseball and softball's most popular training products such as the Original BatAction Hitting Machine, SKLZ Derek Jeter Hurricane Hitting Machine, Original Hitting Stick, Hit2win Trainer, SKLZ Target Trainer, SKLZ Derek Jeter ZipnHit Pro, and Strikeback Trainer. Dixon is also a contributing writer for BaseballCoachingDigest, the Baseball 2Day Coaches Journal, Batting Cage Builder, the American Baseball Directory and the Hit2win Baseball Coaches Monthly Newsletter. Dixon has 5 blogs related to baseball training including the BaseballCoachingDigest Blog, CoachesBest Training Blog, Hurricane Machine Training Blog, Batting Cage Buyers Blog, and the Bat Action Training Blog.
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