There he is--my favorite player--number 5. We played for the Marlins again this season. They hired a new assistant coach. This assistant coach happens to be my favorite coach on staff. He drove Ezra to every single practice, brought him home each time and spent lots of extra time giving him extra tips and pointers at our house after dinner on non-practice nights. He also plays catch with him in the off season and has taken him to the batting cages before. Now, before you get too creeped out (in case you haven't figured it out yet) I'll tell you that his name is Tadd : ) In fact--there he is! Coaching first base during a game.
Ezra's end of the season award this year was for having the most hustle as he runs to first. He never stops to look at where the ball may be landing--just puts his head down and runs as hard as he can. Next year when he can steal bases, I have a feeling we'll see how fast he really is. Right now I am reading the biography of Billy Sunday to the kids and Billy Sunday's specialty was stealing bases and getting into scoring position--it's how he got his fame in the baseball world. Ezra is really enjoying the story because he can see himself being like that, along with the fact that Billy loved the Lord and went on to care more about telling souls the way to salvation than he did about baseball and fame.
Coach Tadd again--having a deep philosophical baseball discussion with another coach during a game.
Our boy takes his baseball pretty seriously these days. He's working on the nuances of batting and throwing technique. This was his last year at the "machine pitch" level. Next year we move on to "kid pitch". I must say that I would dearly love to dig in my heels and stay here at "machine pitch" where there is so much less pressure, where we don't (technically) keep score, where it's okay to make mistakes, where parents are nice to each other (for the most part), where coaches don't have to bark at the kids too much, and where the boys are little enough to be happy to have Mommy cheering them on loudly in the stands. I will miss this level of baseball. But I wouldn't want him to be stuck here where he would stop learning and growing in one of his favorite sports, I suppose. Next year I will also have a small crawler on my hands, which means I won't be able to watch as much of the game.
Look at that smile as he swings away--I just love the delight he takes in the game.
The coaches have fun at this level too.
A well earned ice cream cone.
This season was a breeze for me. Usually I am the one who has to take Ezra to most of his practices and then hang out there with the girls for the duration. This year, with later practice times and Dad as an assistant coach, I didn't go to a single practice. And both girls played with friends in the sand and rock piles at most of the games, allowing me to watch by boy (and chat with other moms, of course). Plus--we have been blessed with one of the best springs, weather-wise, I can remember. Not a single rained out game this year! And only a couple of games where we needed jackets and blankets in the stands. It's been a fun season!