Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Easiness in Gaining Payday Loan Online

      So many requirements have to be accomplished for our family. The requirements include clothes, meal, house, and many more. For achieving those requirements and the others, we have to earn money. People earn money by working in office, working on a field, working in a manufacturer, and many others. Furthermore, when the finance condition is down, we will need additional cash. Well, there is payday loan service that we are able to attain from the internet.

      The best payday loan service can be found at The website provides easy process of payday loan online so that customers can get the cash easily. Moreover, the website also can process many orders really fast so that many people can get the cash from the company very quickly for covering many kinds of need that they have. In addition, ordering payday loan from the company will not need difficult requisites. We can just fulfill all the requisites instantly.

      The company then will give approval instantly as well so that we are able to get the cash transferred to us soon. Well, it is no need for us to worry about the repayment for the payday loan from the company is very affordable.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Way to Make Pretty Photos Cheaply

   Choosing something cheaply will be done by people because the price of everything is changing from one period to another period. Choosing something cheaply can be done through using montage photo en ligne
   There are so many things that can be done by people when they use the software to make their photos, beside cheap prize which they will receive, people will know more about montage de photo that is often used by people to thrift their expense in editing the photos.
   One of the existing software that has been used by people to help them in editing their photos fast is photofunia. People can know the result as fast as possible after they complete the editing process.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Complete Protection in Whole Life Insurance

Nowadays there are so many types about life insurance quotes. It is very various, from the life insurance for your long term until short term. Some kind of life insurance now offers not only insurance but also savings. It would be like insurance company and bank became hybrid. You can do risk management there and you can also saving money and have stocks there. It sounds complicated indeed but no worries, every insurance company would always love to help the customers.
If you want the type of risk management and saving, it’s a reason to see about whole life insurance. Whole life insurance is the type of insurance where you can be protected from future risks by insurance company but also you can save your money, have stocks and get dividends from it. It is sound interesting right?
Whole life insurance has also the long term condition. When you get sick mostly, usual insurance would take the risk then your term ended but in whole life insurance, it is not going to be like that. Your insurance would still be continued due to the savings that you have. So if you want full and compatible insurance, its better if you choose whole life insurance.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

How to Gain Muscles like a Pro

There are many ways a person can develop large muscles and one of them is through exercise and correct training to form as expected. But recently we have witnessed the many that have failed to meet their expected results. This, for an athletic especially, can be very stressful for the hard work takes time, effort, energy and most of all patience. When one runs out of all four, there is a lot to work on to bring back the spirit. Lucky for you all, here is a way to gain muscle mass fast. Eating tons of calories will not do the job; these pills will do the work for you.
If you are interested in gain muscle mass fast, the first thing you have to make sure is that you have seen your physician in advance. Allergies may occur due to the entering of foreign substances into the system. Hence it is important that you see someone first before taking them in. The second thing to make sure of is that they guarantee safety and no long term side effects. Though in certain cases they deem inevitable, it is imminent to make sure they will not affect you for good.
Now once all two issues are secure you are welcome to check out the offers online and through their web page. The team is more than happy to make sure that you are provided the best assistance hence you can ask for that as soon as you enter. Shopping with a friend helping hand to guide you through the endless option is of course great help. This is not the end of their offer as they have terrific rates to offer you too. Order up to 70 USD worth of any items and they will be sent to your door for free!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Beginners Need Baseball Hitting Basics By Jeffery A Wise

Baseball is an all-American sport and it is loved all across North America. It's even becoming more popular in other countries, such as Australia. From a young age, kids develop a love for baseball and they start playing on teams and in leagues. Just as with everything in life, the thousands of yearly baseball beginners need coaching and instruction. They must learn the baseball hitting basics before anything else.
A balanced batting stance is important to learn very early on. A child should stand with their feet shoulder length apart and their knees should be slightly bent. Make sure they put their weight on the balls of their feet instead of their heels. When weight isn't properly distributed, it causes kids to swing off balance.
Another thing a beginner must learn is how to hold the bat. They should line up their knuckles and grip the bat with their fingers. The bat should be held firmly but not too tightly. Make sure they also don't hold it too loosely as they may drop the bat as they swing or make contact.
Of course, having the right bat is important too. A child's age, size and experience will determine which bat is the best for him or her. Allow them to practice holding and swinging several bats to see which size and weight is the most comfortable.
Kids also need to constantly be reminded to keep their eyes on the ball and their head down. They will only be able to hit the ball if they are watching it. Teach them to be focused at the plate and to keep their eye on nothing else but the ball.
As baseball players learn these important baseball hitting basics, they should then learn how to shift their weight during a swing. During the hitting process, a player's weight should shift from the front, to the back and then to the front again during contact. This technique really helps with power and bat speed. While this can be a difficult technique to learn, once you get it you're guaranteed better hits.

Friday, March 23, 2012

What To Look for in the 2011 World Series

This year's World Series is going to be pretty good. The Texas Rangers and St. Louis Cardinals will face each other in the Fall Classic. Of the eight teams that made it the postseason, Texas was the only one to make it back to both the Division Championship Series and the World Series. There will be a new World Series Champion this year: the reigning champion San Francisco Giants, despite injuries and a few players whose production fell off this season, finished with an 86-76 record, second place in the National League West, but eight games behind the Arizona Diamondbacks and four games back in the Wild Card Contention. For those who missed out on the playoffs, here is a brief synopsis on how both teams made it to the World Series:
Texas Rangers:
After a brief setback in August, the Rangers were able to fend off the Los Angeles Angels to win the American League West Division for the second straight year. In the Wild Card Series, after losing the first game, Texas won three straight games to get by a very competitive Tampa Bay Rays ( a team that lost a bunch of players through free agency and trades in the off-season, yet Tampa made a serious charge in September to catch up and take away the Wild Card from the fading Boston Red Sox.) In the American League Championship Series, the Rangers defeated the evenly matched Detroit Tigers in 6 games ( Detroit, who won their first division title since 1987, has a really good team and it's great to see the club bring a spark to a city that has experienced some hard economic times.)
St. Louis Cardinals
The Cardinals are a team that no one thought would have a winning record this season, let alone made it to the postseason. In June, the Cardinals was in first place in the National League Central, by the end of July, the Milwaukee Brewers took over the top spot after St. Louis started to fade away. On September 1, the Cardinals was 9 games out of the Wild Card, but slowly, the team start winning games, eventually catch and take the playoff spot from the Atlanta Braves ( as a Braves fan, it was tough to watch my team lose the wild card spot!) In the first round, the Cardinals did the impossible, beat the Philadelphia Phillies, a team with the best record in Major League Baseball and the odds on favorite to win the World Series Title. In the National League Championship Series, St.Louis was able to defeat the young and upstart Brewers in 6 games ( Milwaukee has a great team and it would be messed up if All-Star slugger Prince Fielder, a free agent, decided to leave the team.)
The World Series
The Rangers are making their second straight trip to the World Series. Last year was a series of firsts for Texas: the 1st time they won a playoff series; the 1st time; the 1st time they won an American League Pennant; the 1st time they played in the World Series. However, when Texas made it to the World Series, it looked like the team used up all its energy in getting through the first two rounds and San Francisco preceded to win the title in 5 games. This time, the Rangers, led by Ron Washington (my choice for Manager of the Year, enough through Jim Leyland had a great year as the skipper for Detroit Tigers) want redemption and win their very first World Series title. By the way, the Rangers are the first American League team to make back to back appearance in the World Series since the New York Yankees (1998-2001) and the first team since the Oakland Athletics (1988-89) to make it back to the Fall Classic after losing the Series a year earlier. The manager of that great Oakland Athletics team was...
St. Louis
...Tony La Russa, the current manager of the Cardinals. St. Louis is making its 18th World Series appearance and their third one since 2006, the year that they won it all against Detroit. Also, the Cardinals are looking for its 11th World Series Championship, the most in National League history and second overall, the New York Yankees hold the top spot at 27 titles. St. Louis has been on a roll since early September, taken teams apart in their path and if they don't win the title, it will be a huge disappointment.
It's going to be a fun and interesting World Series to watch. Just because the marquee teams are not in it this year (New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, Philadelphia Phillies etc.) doesn't mean that people should not tune in. Whatever you are a big or casual baseball fan, you have to watch this year's World Series.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Baseball, Money and Loyalty

The business side of baseball has always been about money, evidenced by the world series scandal involving the Chicago White Sox, aka Chicago Black Sox. Gambling had nothing to do with the "fix," it was only an avenue to the money.
When his career ends, Albert Pujos quite possibly may be considered the Greatest Baseball Player of All Times, and arguably is the best player in baseball at this period of time. There is little doubt if anyone deserves to be paid an enormous amount of money for playing, it is Albert.
When the media throws out dollar amounts of 200 million for a ten year contract, with or without a no-trade clause, or whatever other little tad bit they want to insert, I'm not fool enough to think that's the entire agreement. You can't purchase a $10,000 automobile without signing a half dozen papers, I'd reasonably assume a $200 million contract would be a little more complex.
I was born and bread in St. Louis and was sucking on a St. Louis Cardinal pacifier when I exited the hospital. As a kid when I cut myself, my blood was always a little redder than other kids', a sort of Cardinal red. So don't think this article is going to be a debate between the Cardinals and a player, it's not. It's an honest search for an answer to a question.
"When, or does, money stop being the only factor involved in baseball?"
We've already established Albert Pujos deserves to be the best paid player in baseball. The media reports there are 3 to 4 teams making contractual offers, Florida Marlins, Chicago Cubs, Anaheim Angles and of course the St. Louis Cardinals, all indicating the dollar amounts are quite similar.
Assuming their accuracy is close, why would a player hesitate to resign with the team that gave him the opportunity to play baseball and whose fans have adopted him and his family as their own? This is the situation which is driving me crazy.
If there was a 5 - 10 million dollar difference in contract offers, well... I might have to think real hard about where my loyalties lie. No matter how thankful I may be to an organization, my family and their well being comes first, period. But, how many millions does it take to have security? Much of that answer depends on what you're accustomed to, as a millionaire would prefer a billion dollars, but the minimum wage worker would be ecstatic with a million.
Making it to the major leagues is a long and difficult road and a player with a silver spoon in his mouth is no better off than a kid from the hood. Long bus rides, lousy motels and the constant fear of playing against someone better than you gnaws at you all the time.
So do you deserve big bucks when you prove you're the "best of the best"? Of course you do, but do you owe anything back, is the next question. Do you owe the organization which chose you out of 50,000 other players to give a chance, or the coaches you met along the way who taught you the finer points of the game, which made you just a little bit better than the next guy. What about the fans who flocked to see you play wearing $200 jerseys with your name on the back, trying to emulate you.
Does a ball club owe a player who makes them money, and does the player owe 100% effort for the money he's being paid? There's no debate here, of course. But where does money stop being the sole factor in determining where a player chooses to play? There has to be more involved than just money, isn't there?

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Sports Management Tips - How to Find Sponsors

Obviously everything in life changes, constantly evolving, sometimes for the better, other*times not so much. One such issue which has undergone immense changes in the last 40 years is little league baseball, and not only by the improved equipment and coaching techniques, but the typical day to day operation of youth league associations.
I remember as a kid playing organized baseball, the only new piece of equipment afforded players was a cap. The association provided the teams uniforms, which were handed down from the 1 year older team to the year younger team and so on and so forth down the ladder.
I vividly remember my mother repairing tears in the uniform knees and sewing a patch of fabric with a sponsors' name crudely stenciled on the back of the jersey. If you had a rip or hole in the stirrups, well you were just screwed because they couldn't be repaired.
I have no idea what the cost of registration was at that time, probably $2 - $3 from what my dad remembers, which still wasn't chump change when wages were $2.25 - $3 an hour, but the 1950s were a time of austerity.
As society changed and the middle class became more affluent, parental attitudes changed dramatically and the idea of their boy or girl wearing a hand me down uniform became quite unacceptable. The chance of contracting a disease, which was a very weak excuse, but a good scare tactic, females entering the workforce in droves and the inability of mothers to sew, all contributed to the changing of little league procedures.
Baseball associations, attempting to please the parents, began changing their methods of using uniforms no more than two years before discarding them, but the only method of financing such a dramatic change was to raise registration fees.
This method worked until the inevitable occurred, the fees became too high for the normal family, especially with 3 or 4 children playing to afford. Many associations, not too long ago, charged $150 for the first child, $75 for the second and $50 for each additional player. Expectantly, cries of too many kids not being able to afford to play baseball were heard loud and clear.
Associations faced returning to the past and begin reusing uniforms or continue to raise fees, both options ruled unacceptable, leaving only one alternative. Make the Coach responsible for providing uniforms.
If you play in a wealthy area, where most of the parents are lawyers, doctors or business owners, locating a sponsor who will foot the bill of new uniforms is not a problem, as the monies spent are an advertising tax write off.
However, live in small communities, or in a city where population cluster vastly outnumbers businesses and the coach will face a huge financial dilemma. I coached in, what at that time was a smaller community, so I developed a few ideas for obtaining a sponsor I'd like to pass along, especially to new coaches.
1. Look at your immediate ring of friends and co-workers. Do any of them have a business which could benefit from the exposure of sponsoring a little league team? If not...
2. Go to the next level with friends and co-workers. Ask them if they know of anyone who may be interested. Your co-worker's brother-in-law may own a heating/cooling company he never spoke of until you asked.
3. Have a team meeting with the parents and explain the situation. One of the parents may own or work for a company which may be interested. Send them on a mission to help find a sponsor, also dropping a hint the money may have to come from them if no sponsor is found.
4. If you're not a salesperson this may be difficult for you, but you must meet face to face with business owners in town to request their help. Letters, no matter how eloquent, will end up in file 13. It'd easy to say "no" to a letter, not so easy to a face to face meeting.
5. Begin early!!! I can't stress this enough. Begin searching for a sponsor immediately after New Years eve. Christmas time is too hectic and believe me March is too late.
6. If a person says come back in a week or two... come back. They may have no intentions of helping and are just trying to get rid of you. However, they may have wanted to talk to their tax advisor first before committing. Don't stop looking during those 2 weeks.
7. You may need to get 2 sponsors to split the cost. Unions are usually quite willing to offer financial assistance to youth associations, but are normally limited by law or by-laws of the amount they can contribute. Present a written request to the union hall spelling everything out in detail and requesting any funds possible. In my experiences, if they OK the request, they will automatically contribute the maximum.
8. Last but not the least, you may have to consider a team fund raiser. There are countless methods available for teams to raise money, such as car washes, bake sales, donation buckets and etc.
I found selling candy bars to be the Easiest method to raise money. Between friends, neighbors and co-workers it normally doesn't take long to get sell the entire inventory. There are numerous companies which will work with you in setting up a program, but be careful of scammers.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

What Most Hitting Trainers Won't Teach You

In this article, I'm going to go over an issue that most hitting trainers are not aware of that can greatly affect the effectiveness of your baseball training. That issue is when you're taking batting practice you need to be aware of commercial batting cages in which the batter's box slopes down.
At many commercial batting cages, the batter's box is sloped down so the balls can roll from out of the back stop and back to the pitching machine on their own. However, hitting trainers need to realize that having a batter's box that slopes down towards the pitching machine messes up your stride and weight transfer since it causes your body to go forward. In a regular game, the batter's box is level so your body does NOT get pushed forward and weight does not get pushed forward due to the slope of the batter's box.
Therefore, in your training for baseball, you need to be careful which batting cages you go to for batting practice, because if it's one that the batter's box slopes down in front so the balls just roll back down to the pitching machine, this might end up causing a bad habit of your weight going forward and lunging at the ball which is bad. Obviously, if you're a baseball player that already has this bad habit it's not going to do any good to correct it by continuing to go to these types of batting cages for batting practice.
It's a shame most hitting trainers don't pick up on this, as it is not conducive to conditioning the proper hitting mechanics into a baseball swing. Whether you're a ball player yourself, hitting trainer or parent of a child that plays baseball, avoid these types of batting cages that have the batter's box that slopes down and look for batting cages that have a level batter's box.
What this will do for you by taking batting practice at batting cages that have a level batter's box, is it will allow you to strike out much less and give you the sound mechanics in your swing necessary to generate hit after hit. You will be able to stay back on the off-speed pitches, such as a curveball or change-up, longer and not end up being too early with your swing on these pitches. In all, you won't be fooled by the curveball and similar pitches as much.
As a hitting trainer, I will tell you that if you have a habit of going forward with your body and even lunging at a regular fastball, taking batting practice at those batting cages that have level batter's boxes will help tremendously to eliminate that bad habit. By eliminating this bad habit of lunging for the ball or going forward with your body in your baseball swing, you will see a measurable difference in the amount of power you are able to generate in your swing.
Note there are some good hitting trainers and some not so good hitting trainers; make sure you do your homework before picking out a hitting trainer for you. Take these hitting tips and start applying them today!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Switch Hitting Tips

Nobody enjoys attempting to participate in a game, especially a "Team" sport, which your skills are far below the other participants, it's just not any fun being an automatic out. Therefore, for personal reasons, increasing our fun and self respect, we strive to improve and add to our skill sets, but there is another very important reason to improve.
In little league there are always your naturally larger and stronger kids which dominate hitting and pitching, but as kids grow into young adults the strength and ability gap narrows as the serious athlete hits the weights for strength, spends hours in the batting cages and seeks professional tutorage.
Not only do the athletes change, but the game itself and how decisions are made changes drastically as Coaches begin making position moves during a game based on percentages and odds rather than gut feelings. He'll bring in a left handed pitcher to face a left handed batter, although his right handed reliever was throwing well, based solely on percentages.
When analyzing talent during tryouts a Coach and his assistants, will grade the performance of each player as he performs such tasks as hitting, fielding and throwing. This grade card is then tabulated into terms of what benefit would this player be for the Team.
This is the point where being able to proficiently Switch Hit could very well be the determining factor if you make the team or not, as the ability to switch hit increases a player's value by adding options for a coach to draw upon.
I don't know any Coach which, all other factors considered between two players being equal, who wouldn't choose the player who could switch hit to be on the team.
So how do we go about learning to switch hit?
Mental preparation is the very first thing we must do. Mickey Mantle is the only player I'm aware of who hit consistently the same whether hitting left or right handed, and he's in the Baseball Hall of Fame.
The very first thing to be aware of is You will NOT feel the same when hitting from the opposite side of the plate. Although this should be obvious, I've know many players who I believe had the talent to become very good hitting from either side, who quickly discarded the idea because they felt awkward hitting from the opposite side.
Another, what should be obvious difference except in very rare cases, you'll be a different type of hitter as you switch hit. In almost all cases you will have more power hitting from your natural side, not to say you can't hit a home run from your opposite side, but it's not as likely. Why?
Theoretically, the body's entire hitting system, muscles, eyes, and mind have been trained one way to react as you hit, but turn the body around backwards and this entire system must immediately adapt new memory.
Because of the complexity of this memory adaptation, the mind quickly reverts back to basics, make contact with the ball.
I've known of coaches, (me) who have forced a star hitter, mired in a hitting slump, to hit from the other side during practice and by going back to the basics of intently watching the ball and swinging for contact instead of power, the hitter becomes better.
Sometimes you have to go backwards to go forward, therefore here is the system I used for my players when learning to switch hit.
1. They began by hitting off a batting tee extensively as this began to somewhat acclimated their body and mind to the new and awkward physical task of hitting from the opposite side.
This drill was used until the hitter could solidly hit ten balls in a row off the tee. After all, if you can't hit a ball setting still you definitely won't hit one moving.
2.Once they demonstrated they could perform this drill (which also increased their confidence immensely) they moved to taking swings in a batting cage.
3. Establishing a reasonable skill level at making contact with a moving ball, they began switch hitting during batting practice. The first few times they batted from the opposite side only, then they'd hit from their natural side, then switch and hit five pitches.

How To Become A Complete Ball Player

Anyone involved in the world of baseball has heard the phrase "5 tool player", based on the 5 most recognized skills which an all-around good player should possess. Obviously, physical skills are extremely important in playing any sport, however I believe a player without these 5 necessities is much more likely to fail.
I once had a Coach tell me " Knowledge is Not power... Applied knowledge is Power. In other words, it doesn't matter how much knowledge you have about a certain thing, or how much physical ability you posses, not applying or applying those skills in a haphazard way will result either in failure or mediocre success.
Which leads me to the 5 tool player who will either fail or achieve limited success without having, what I believe are these 5 critical necessities.
1. Love of the game.
Call it tenacity, drive, motivation or just plain old craziness, but a player must be totally devoted to learning his craft. This is not quite as easily defined as one may initially think, as there is a fine line, gray area if you prefer, between perfectionism and the drive to be perfect.
The burning desire to become a perfect ball player is what motivates a player to stay after practice shagging another 150 ground balls, another half hour in the batting cages or 75 double play attempts refining the timing between second baseman and the shortstop.
Perfectionism, is the slow eroding attitude which in nearly every case, results in the player becoming frustrated, ill tempered and eventually dropping out of the game, because if they can not be the best...they will not play.
Coaches are not psychiatrist, therefore there's very little they can do to alter the emotions or mental attitude between the two players, and for the most part don't have the time to try.
2. Knowing how to be a Teammate.
This, at first, may sound a little odd to add this to a "must have" list, but how many times have you heard "The team chemistry was everything," and this is at the MLB level where everyone is suppose to be an adult and a professional.
Don't believe that for a second and don't believe that one negative or disruptive player can't destroy a team's moral. It doesn't matter if the player hits.450% or has a 0.05 ERA, if the player disrupts the team's ability to win... he's gone. Knowing how to be a teammate is important.
3. Ability to learn.
The ability to learn begins at a young age, but the middle, 14 to 16 years old, will demonstrate the true ability of a player to learn. What do I mean by that?
By this age a player's natural talent level is somewhat established, as he is either a mediocre player, relegated to the general draft teams, or a top prospect heavily recruited by traveling teams. Coming from the large pool of players, where he was a very large fish in a small pond, he wasn't really pushed to perform or learn in order to be the best player on the field.
Suddenly, he's a little fish in a big pond, thrown together with players bigger, stronger and better than he is. Will he maintain his same work ethic, ignoring coaches' advice, while maintaining in his own mind he's still the best? Or will he realize he's a very good player with a whole lot to learn and had better step his game up by training harder and picking every coach's mind for information? This demonstrates his ability to learn.
4. Respect.
A player must have a respect for the game, and what is that? The game has an unwritten code of ethics which has ruled the game for a 100 years, and similar to a Knight's code of honor, the ball player will not break or disrespect the moral code of the game.
For instance, a player will run and slide hard into second base with the full intention of knocking the shortstop down, or otherwise force the altering of his throw to first base, in order to break up a double play. However, he would Never go in spikes high in an attempt to injure another player. Thus the code of respect.
5. Pay it forward.
This re-touches on being a good teammate, but defines it in detail and for the most part is nearly impossible to detect, only the player knows if he possesses this quality.
Does the player have the courage to teach a possible opponent, although a teammate, how to solve or improve a skill issue, although it may have a negative effect on his playing?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Pre Game Evaluation

You're on the bus traveling to a brand new opponent's ball park, of course you have the normal pre-game jitters, your stomach is queasy and you can't stop tapping your foot. Taking a deep breath to calm the nerves, you mentally go through your first task upon arriving, which if you think is analyzing the opposing team, you'd be wrong.
As soon as you step off the bus and walk to the dugout your senses of sight, and hearing should become acutely aware, familiarizing yourself with the environment. Familiarity, subconsciously, breeds comfort and you want to quickly become acclimated to the environment so you can focus on playing baseball.
1. Prior to beginning your warm-up tosses, slowly and carefully take a wide scan around the entire field, foul pole to foul pole, making a mental note of anything which could come into play that could affect the ball. Ask yourself a few questions as you look.
B. The most important thing to inspect is the playing field, especially the texture and make up of the playing field. Nearly all amateur ball parks have a dirt infield, but every now and then you'll run across a grass infield with sliding pits around the bases. Most importantly look at the outfield grass, is it thick or tall, as this will definitely have an impact on ground balls through the infield, such as you'll have to automatically charge a ball if the grass is high, or you may be able to stretch a hit into a double.
C. Observe the field layout including foul territories and corners. There may be a slight dip or ditch 25' outside the left field foul line, which would most likely be out of play, but if you're running full speed chasing a foul ball fly in that area, you'll need that subconscious note to pull up before falling or tripping in the ditch.
Or you may notice a weird angle at the right field foul pole area created by an awkward connection of fencing of the field and the parking lot, where a ball could get trapped in that area if it bounced a certain way.
Now that you have a mental picture of the playing field and any quirks which may cause a problem, analyze the natural conditions.
A. Wind or no wind today and if there is, which direction is it blowing? A Strong wind to a particular field, or blowing straight out from behind the plate, could cause a high fly ball to travel 10 feet or more further than it normally would, but in the case of a strong wind blowing in towards the plate, it'll hold the ball up longer and decrease distance of travel.
B. Is there a sun problem? Where's the Sun located, which of course will change during the game, but you need to know what affects, if any, the sun plays in the first inning. Is it a High Sky, where I'll need to wear sunglasses or cloudy and overcast.
*** Remember... there's a Huge Difference between Looking and Observing. ***

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Red Sox Owner Who Sold Babe Ruth To The Yankees

Harry Frazee was a New York theatrical producer who, after an unsuccessful attempt to purchase the New York Giants, bought the Boston Red Sox in 1916 from Joseph John Lannin, a real estate mogul who had made his fortune in the commodities market. The deal was a complicated one and amounted to $1,000,000 to be paid to various interested parties. Frazee had to borrow money to consummate the deal, and this led to some of his financial difficulties as the Red Sox owner.
Frazee's tenure as Red Sox owner was complicated by his relationship with Ban Johnson, President of the American League. Johnson had angered Frazee by shortening the 1918 season because of World War I and the diminished gate receipts were and additional setback to the cash-strapped Frazee. Johnson, for his part, accused Frazee of permitting known gamblers to set up shop near Fenway Park.
By 1919 the embattled Red Sox owner was barely keeping his head above water. Turnout had fallen at the baseball park during the war and attendance at Frazee's theater ventures had suffered as well. Selling off some of his interests in these Broadway productions helped to pay off only a small part of his loan, and Frazee began to turn to his talented baseball players as a source of income. During the next four years, catcher Wally Schang, infielders Joe Dugan and Everett Scott and pitchers Carl Mays, Sam Jones, Herb Pennock, George Pipgras, Waite Hoyt and Joe Bush would soon all be traded - usually for cash with some mostly 2nd tier replacements added as part of the deal.
The most infamous transaction, of course, was the sale of Babe Ruth to the Yankees in early 1920 for a record-setting $100,000. The deal was sweetened by a $300,000 loan from Yankee owner Jacob Ruppert. This only brought the beleaguered Red Sox owner temporary relief, as Lannin and other lenders were becoming impatient with the pace of Frazee's debt payments. Lannin sued for ownership of Fenway Park as collateral and, in the ensuing court settlement, Frazee had to pay Lannin $265,000. The revenue from the Babe Ruth deal and Ruppert's loan were used to meet this obligation.
Contrary to popular legend, the financial records make it clear that Harry Frazee did not sell Babe Ruth to the Yankees to finance No, No, Nanette, but rather to meet his debt obligations to previous owner, Joseph Lannin. His sale of the Red Sox in 1923 for $ 1,150,000 is the more likely source of the Broadway musical's successful Broadway debut in 1925.
It must also be mentioned that Babe Ruth's playing days with the Red Sox were not the happiest of relationships. He was often drunk and unruly and had abandoned the team on more than one occasion. Additionally, as his fame as a home run hitter began to grow, he no longer wanted to pitch and he became involved in various schemes such as becoming a prizefighter or an actor. Lastly, his demands for a 100% salary increase in 1919 probably pushed Frazee over the edge, as he had been more than generous with his temperamental star during his tenure as Red Sox owner.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Youth Baseball Coaching Techniques That Work

I love and appreciate great coaches in all sports and at all levels. I love to make notes of coaches who think outside the box and take chances. I remember years ago the baseball manager Billy Martin put a game under protest because the pitcher took one extra pitch to warm-up between innings. He was probably the only one in the ballpark who was counting. I remember when they first put in the rule in major league baseball about pitchers going to their mouth in a game the pitch would be called a "ball." The manager Leo Durocher at the time ordered his pitcher to go to his mouth four times when he wanted to intentionally walk a batter. There was a basketball game years ago that Paul Westphal, a player at the time had called a time out knowing his team had none left to purposely get a technical foul. His team was down by one point with one second on the clock and the illegal time out would grant the opposition a free foul shot which they made but it gave Westphal's team, the Phoenix Suns, the ball at half court. So instead of his team trying to get a full court length 80 foot shot in for the win, they buried an 18 foot shot after getting the ball out at half court to send the game into another overtime period.
In all my years coaching youth sports, I have always tried to be flexible and have an open mind learning coaching and motivational techniques from other coaches. It doesn't matter the sport, I am always observing these other coaches and how they speak to their players. I watch football coaches yelling at individual players and make note of how close the coach's face is to the player's. I watch youth coaches and see how they speak to young players getting down on one knee just to be at the same eye level to make a point. The littlest things go the longest way. I learnt long ago that when speaking to my players outside, I make sure I am the one facing the sun. If the kids are facing the sun, chances are they will cover their eyes and maybe half will get the point you are trying to get across. Here are some other tidbits I've learned.
I am one of those people who have a hard time remembering names. Hearing your own name heard is one of the best ways to gain one's attention. At the beginning of each season I struggle just to learn everyone's name as soon as I could. To me it is a little bit of work but well worth it. Also I make sure I tell my players that I am not good at names and to be patient if I call someone the wrong name. This is especially true if I have a brother of a former player. As coaches we must take the time to learn player's names as soon as possible. And once we learn their names, we must learn and be familiar with their parent's name or how they want to be addressed.
A number of years ago I use to give out what I called a Tenth Player Award. The award would have nothing to do with batting averages or pitching performance. The award would be given to the player who exemplified sportsmanship, cheering on their teammates and helping coaches with the equipment. I was sure to make this trophy the largest one given out to any individual even if we won the league championship. This worked great! It motivated the players to be good teammates. It also made for an easier time for the coaches when the players would help with the equipment. If you decide to try this, make sure you are able to give the award to more than one player if there is a tie. I remember one year I had a special team. We won only about half our games but what a great enthusiastic bunch of kids we had on one team. At the end of the season, we coaches decided to give all twelve players a Tenth Player Award trophy. The coaches chipped in but with the size of the trophies we got, it set us beck a few dollars.
Another technique would be to give out extra swings for batting practice. I learned that in youth baseball, the players live for batting practice. So why not reward good deeds with extra swings? If we finished a game and I needed help with the equipment bag and John and Mark are the only ones putting the equipment away, I will yell out.
" John and Mark will get one extra swing each during batting practice tomorrow for helping with the equipment."
I make sure I say it loud enough so the whole team hears me. A lot of times after I say it, a number of other players will also help with the equipment.
Make sure when you do this, you don't say,"Whoever helps with the equipment gets an extra swing at batting practice." You want to be somewhat stingy with the extra swings and only announce it after someone is helping. This adds value to the swings you are giving out and players will help out not knowing if they will get extra swings or not. This works great and when the players take batting practice, the first thing I ask them when they get into the batter's box is, "How many swings do I owe you?" The player might say seven. I'll say we'll use two of those. I put my players on the honor system. This has even carried over from season to season when we are at our first practice of the year, a young veteran will make sure to tell me, "Coach, you owe me six extra swings from last year."
I make sure to make good on those extra swings. When kids are determined to remember something that will benefit them, it stays with them.
As youth coaches many times we will take some of the personality and techniques from the coaches we had as youngsters and in school. The best advice I can give is to take bits and pieces from other coaches but you have to develop your own coaching personality. If you end up coaching over a long period of time you will learn what works to motivate your players and what works when you want to have a little fun.
Just make sure you realize that what might work for one group of kids may not work the following year. Be enthusiastic and be flexible to make changes as a coach! And whatever anyone may else tell you, you are a role model!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Pitching Drills For A Smarter Practice And Better Pitchers

There are literally hundreds, maybe thousands of pitching drills on the internet and in print. It's becoming a larger task sifting through all of the advertisements and "Buy our stuff!" websites than the actual job of teaching our pitchers how to get better. The fact is that a lot of these sites offer some pretty good information if you can get to it without your credit card, the problem is getting to the good stuff before your brain explodes.

Instead of writing down how to do a bunch of pitching drills, let's review a few keys that will make your practices far more useful and truly effective. If you incorporate the correct attributes into the pitching drills that you're already doing, chances are they will work perfectly to make your pitchers better. If you're lost and trying to find some ideas to use for working with your pitchers, the following article will form the foundation for the instruction.

First, let's ask the most important question:

"What am I trying to accomplish with my pitching drills?"

Slow down and think about this question. With every pitching drill that your players are doing, what is it that they are learning? In most practices pitchers will go to the bullpen and throw thirty or forty pitches and then return to practice to work on whatever it is the rest of the team is doing. What is your pitcher learning from that? Answer that question and then decide if that's enough, if that pitching drill is doing enough.

The bullpen session could be teaching the pitcher a few small mechanical corrections, perhaps it will increase accuracy slightly, and it will aid in pitch development. Other than that, a bullpen session does very little. The second question that you should ask is this:

"What skills do my pitchers need in a game?"

Think about some of the things that your pitcher needs to be good at in a game. From the example above, the three things we thought of that were improved in the bullpen session are indeed important in a game. Also important in a game are the following: The ability to focus well on the task at hand, knowing how to pitch certain situations, having good chemistry with the catcher, knowing when and how to throw out of the strike zone effectively, how to pitch certain counts, when to use certain pitches, and multiple other mental aspects of the game. How many of those do a traditional bullpen or pitching drill develop?

If the skills that your pitchers need in order to do well in a game don't match up with the things you're trying to accomplish in your pitching drills, they should. The best way to practice getting better in the games, is to practice like it is a game. Far too many coaches don't do the steps above, and wind up spending almost all of the time they have for pitching drills working on things that barely improve their pitchers. Seasons are short and practice time is shorter, pitching drills must be designed for maximum instruction in the game time skills.

Here's one example of how to make a bullpen far more effective:

Instead of a traditional bullpen, have the pitcher and catcher set up imaginary batters and situations. Have the two of them communicate with each other and the coach a specific plan of attack for each batter and each situation that they think up. Have them work through a few innings of imaginary baseball, changing and adapting to each change in the game. Use different pitches, but use them smartly based on the count and the situation, not just to throw them. Make the bullpen more like a game. Your pitcher will still throw his thirty or forty pitches that he normally would have in a typical pitching drill or bullpen, however in this drill he'll learn far more of the skills he needs to learn.

This is just one small example, but it illustrates the principles of "practice like a game" very well. There are always ways to make pitching drills more like a game, and there are numerous ways to include training in the mental realm of baseball. Knowledge of the job and mental confidence on the mound are second to none in creating a great pitcher. The only way to make your pitchers better at them is to practice them.

In summary, pitching drills are a great way to make your pitchers better, but only if you do them right. Working on three skills and expecting good results in the other dozen required during a game is a fools game. Make the pitching drills more like a game, and the game will begin to come more naturally for your pitchers.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The National League's First Shutout

April 25, 1876, was the opening day for the new National League of Professional Base Ball Professional Clubs. The Louisville (Ky.) Courier-Journal proclaimed the contest between the Louisville Grays and the Chicago White Stockings (now the Cubs) as the "finest game of base ball ever witnessed in Louisville." It estimated over 6,000 people were in attendance at Louisville Baseball Park and were treated to weather "of the most flattering nature." However, the Chicago Tribune said only about 2,000 people showed up.

On the mound for the White Stockings for Opening Day was Albert Goodwill Spalding. Successfully lured to Chicago in the summer of 1875 by a $2,000 contract, Spalding had won 241 games from 1871 to 1875 for the Boston Red Stockings. Louisville countered with James Devlin. A native of Philadelphia, Devlin had been an infielder with the White Stockings in the old National Association in 1874 and 1875. After the Association folded and was replaced by the National League, Devlin had been converted into a pitcher. He was believed to be the fist pitcher to throw a sinkerball.

Unlike modern-day baseball, a coin toss was held to see who would bat first in the game. The White Stockings won the toss, but Louisville was designated to bat first.

In the bottom of the second inning, Paul Hines led off for Chicago and reached first by an error made by the Grays' first baseman John Carbine. After advancing to third from a single from Spalding, Hines came home when Robert Addy hit a grounder to Carbine.

The next inning, Ross Barnes of the White Stockings got a walk and reached second after Adrian C. "Cap" Anson hit a ground ball to Carbine. Barnes scored Chicago's second run when second baseman Joe Gerhardt made a bad throw to Carbine. Spalding, Robert Addy, and Deacon led off the bottom of the fourth by smacking three consecutive singles. After Devlin started pitching to the next batter, Johnny Peters, he stopped when catcher Charles "Pop" Snyder did not look at him. To the disgust of the Louisville fans, umpire L.B. Warren called a balk, and Spalding came home. However, the White Stockings did not score any more runs in the inning.

In the bottom of the seventh, Barnes hit a single, advanced to second by an error by Jack Chapman, and scored Chicago's last run when Anson got a base hit. The reporter covering the ball game for the Louisville Courier-Journal thought Warren made a terrible call when he ruled Barnes's single was in fair territory. But he added that an umpire's job "is a sorry one to fill, and we are willing to give Mr. Warren the credit of making decisions only as he truly thought right."

In the top of the ninth, Louisville had one last chance to end the shutout. However, Chapman and George Bechtel hit weak grounders to Spalding, and Devlin hit a pop-up that was caught by Peters. Unlike today, the White Stockings batted in the bottom of the ninth even though they had already clinched the ball game, but they did not score any runs.

While the 4-0 shutout was hardly a game of great athletic merit (both teams committed nine errors, and Spalding made an embarrassing base running gaffe), it was important not just because it was the fist one in National League history. Ultimately, it proved to be a harbinger for both the White Stockings and the Grays. The White Stockings won the first National League pennant with a record of 54 victories and 14 defeats. Over the next ten years, the White Stockings would win five additional pennants.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Marketing Baseball Tournaments the Right Way: A Five Step Guide

By the year, youth baseball tournaments are becoming more and more popular. For those of us who run tournaments as a way of life, this is somewhat bitter sweet. On one hand, more tournaments means that more teams are participating in tournaments. And, if more teams are participating in tournaments...well you get the picture. On the other hand though, the fact that youth baseball tournaments have become extremely popular in recent years means that all tournament directors, even those who run established tournaments, need to fight harder to sign up teams. Part of this battle for teams consists of hosting a well run tournament year after year. But, it's hard to host a well run tournament if all the teams in the area are playing in Joe Schmoe's tournament down the road. I have compiled this marketing guide to assist both newcomers and old dogs in their own battle for teams and help even novice tournament directors build a successful and established tournament.

Step 1: Start Free and Easy

One of the biggest resources available to tournament directors when marketing a tournament is the internet. Yeah, I know this comes as no surprise to you - it's 2012 not 1999. But, just because we all know what Google is doesn't mean that every tournament director out there successfully takes advantage of the free (or extremely cheap) online tournament marketing services. In fact, this aspect of tournament marketing seems to be often overlooked.

The first online resource you should look into is the offerings available from the sanctioning body which you are running your tournament through. Almost all youth baseball sanctioning organizations will assist your marketing in some fashion. After all, they benefit from your tournament's success. USSSA, which is quickly becoming the leading youth baseball organization in the country, will post your tournament on their website and link the post to either your own website or the registration form for no cost at all. From my experience running tournaments I know that most participants find their tournaments on the sanctioning organization's website. It's a quick and easy way for coaches to find tournaments. And, it's an extremely effective and free way to market your tournament to almost every coach in the state.

Another valuable marketing service for tournament directors is For one reason or another, is often underutilized by many tournament directors. In this case, their loss is your gain. is a website that allows users to post sporting events they are hosting. It's simple and free to create an account and it only takes a couple of minutes to post a tournament. Moreover, has teamed up with, an online platform which most youth baseball teams use to create their own websites. This partnership has led to a large number of coaches using to search for baseball tournaments. And, since is a nationwide website, its services allow you to promote your tournament to teams in other states. In my experience, has been an essential tool in pulling in teams from neighboring states and serves as a valuable resource that can turn your would-be local tournament into a regional one.

Yet another free and easy online resource that is often ignored by tournament directors is email marketing companies. Every tournament director in the country sends out emails to coaches "promoting" their tournament. Every coach in the nation gets hundreds of tournament emails a year. How do your emails stand out from others? A catchy subject line and well written sales text can only get you so far. Online em`il marketing services, such as MailChimp, allow you to use HTML graphics, add pictures, link to your website, and track response from your email. Most of these services are free with a small amount of email contacts (usually under 1,000) and they definitely help your email stick out from the pack.

Step 2: Hit Early, Hit Often

This marketing step may seem a little obvious but, nonetheless, it is essential in building a strong tournament. The earlier you post your tournament online, the more likely teams are to sign up. The earlier you email blast your coach contacts, the more likely you are to pull in registrations. It's all pretty simple but rarely do I see this marketing strategy fully taken advantage of.

Your tournament's competition may have a bigger budget for promotion. They may have a more reputable name. And, they may have more connections with more coaches. But, no matter what the case may be, you can always get the upper hand when it comes to the timeliness of your marketing. Your tournament may be one of 20 state-wide tournaments on the same weekend. But, if you post and promote early, coaches will only see your tournament not the 19 others that will eventually be posted.

I suggest putting together a promotion strategy early and following it to the T until your tournament is full. My strategy? Post your tournament online a year before the start date and send out an initial email to coaches once posted. Six months prior to your tournament, send out another email to coaches and follow up with a personal phone call a week later. Then repeat this strategy every month up to your tournament. You'd be surprised at your marketing success if you diligently follow a promotion strategy.

Step 3: Build Relationships

Too many tournament directors are wary about reaching out to coaches for help in marketing their tournament. They see the director-coach relationship as nothing more than a business relationship and keep interactions short and sweet. This is a fatal mistake. You must understand that, as tournament director, you are providing a wanted and appreciated service to coaches. And, coaches come in contact with more teams on a weekly basis than you could ever reach out to.

By building relationships with youth coaches, you are gaining a marketing partner. Don't be hesitant to become friendly with coaches. Call the coaches that sign up early for your tournament and thank them. Exchange friendly emails with them on a regular basis. And, once you establish a decent relationship simply ask if they will mention your tournament to other teams in the area. It's amazing how willing coaches are to help promote your tournament to other teams if you build a relationship with them. I know of one tournament director that makes a habit of sending out Christmas cards from his organization to coaches who participate in his tournaments. The simple friendly gesture pays back tenfold when he fills up tournaments year after year.

Step 4: Go Old School

Online marketing is quick, easy, and cheap. And, often online marketing is extremely effective. But, never underestimate good old snail mail. Every tournament director in the nation promotes their tournaments by way of email. And, don't get me wrong, there are many good reasons to do this. But, do you make a habit of opening and reading every mass email you get? Or do you simply hit the delete button? Even the most successful tournament marketing emails I send out don't receive much higher than a 15% open rate. The average email in this industry is opened by approximately 6% of every contact it is sent to. If you're emailing 100 coaches, you'd be lucky if your email was read by 15 of them.

Snail mail, on the other hand, tends to be a lot more effective. After all, I personally open every letter I receive. It may seem outdated but, I suggest sending a personalized letter to every coach in your contact database and invite them to participate in your upcoming tournament. Your letter is sure to be read and appreciated. Heck, if I was a coach I would definitely sign up for a tournament that I was invited personally invited to.

Step 5: Pound the Pavement

When it comes to marketing your youth baseball tournament, other tournaments can become one of your biggest assets. Every spring and summer weekend in every city in the county there is sure to be at least one tournament being held. Youth baseball tournaments are marked by high attendance and tons of down time for teams. Take advantage of these other tournaments when marketing your own. Make a habit of spending an hour or two at other local tournaments every weekend. Hand out fliers, mingle with coaches, and promote your own tournament. First of all, by doing this you put a face and a name to your tournament. Secondly, you build relationships (see Step 3). You'll quickly find that you are going above and beyond almost all other tournament directors; an action that will surely pay off. When marketing any product, what can be better than a large amount of your target audience hanging out in one place? Use this opportunity to your advantage.