We finally played our first game today, but alas, we lost by the score of 9-4. We did some good things and some not-so-good things, and we've identified a few areas for improvement for Game 2, which will be Monday evening.
I thought our pitchers did well. They didn't walk a lot of guys, and they kept their cool. It helps that the strike zone in this league is big enough to drive a Ford F-350 through, but they had decent control and I was pleased with them.
The big strike zone is great when they're up. When we batted, we didn't do a lot of hitting. We did most of our scoring in one inning, helped by a traditional Little League rally of a dropped third strike, a couple of walks, and a seeing-eye single. Most of our at-bats would be satisfying to followers of the Three True Outcomes doctrine - walk, strikeout, or home run - except for the home runs. We'll have to work on our strike zone judgment, and on being more aggressive with good pitches.
We did do a few good things in the field. Our catcher had a lot of action, as the opponents ran at every opportunity. They did reach on dropped third strikes a few times, but overall he did a great job. I think he'll really develop back there. Both guys who played second base got to field a ground ball and tag the runner coming from first. The defense was about what I expected it to be.
Items to work on: Awareness of the strike zone. Running on passed balls and dropped third strikes, and reacting faster when they run. Outfield play - they hit three balls to right field and none to left, probably because batters are more likely to swing late and thus hit to the opposite field.
The opposing team was better than us - I'd be willing to bet almost all of them played last year. They were well-versed in strategy - they knew that at this level, aggressive baserunning is a winner. Definitely a talking point for the next game. I do think we're not so far away from them, and with some improvements I'll like our chances against them next time.
Next game is Monday, then I'll miss two games due to travels. I'm already thinking about lineups and pitchers.Posted by Charles Kuffner on April 12, 2003 to Just call me Coach | TrackBack