Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Once in a lifetime....

We had a very rare treat at our Thunder practice this week.
Mike Smithson
He is a former major league baseball pitcher and he came to give the team some instruction on how to throw a ball correctly.
He played with the Rangers, Twins and Red Sox back in the 80's.
He is now the athletic director for one of our surrounding counties.
It. Was. Awesome.
He went over the basics - because sometimes you just need to go back to these every once in a while. He showed them the best way to hold the ball to make it go straight.

He watched as they played long toss.....

Then he did individual instruction for each player.
It's all about the mechanics.
Tyler has great mechanics - Mike said so.
Tyler's only problem is his release. He doesn't always release in the same spot so his balls are not always strikes.
What did Mike say about this?
"With mechanics like that why are you throwing strikes? Throw me a strike right now."
And he did. Not once, not twice but three in a row.
Hopefully we can carry that onto the field in our next game.

Now I think this was the moment that Charlie had been waiting for ever since he knew Mike was coming.....just to meet him.
He turned into that little boy all over again. The one holding the baseball card waiting for an autograph. It was funny to see Charlie so enamoured with a baseball player!

Had to get my actual 8 year old in a picture too!

Mike brought something with him that they may never get to hold again.....his world series ring that he won while playing for the Twins. It was huge! I am not sure Tyler even realized what he has on his finger right there - but it could probably pay for our house.

Then every little boys dream - an autographed baseball card!

A great practice with a great player....

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


Today marked a day in the history of dental bliss for Tyler.

He had to get his first crown.

To say he was obsessed about this day would be an understatement. Tyler likes to know everything. He doesn't like surprises, he isn't comfortable with the unknown and he really hates needles.

As much as I could explain to him about what was going to happen I did. He just wanted to fall asleep for the whole thing and he hoped the "silly juice" would do that for him. He tried - oh did he try to fall asleep.

In the waiting room.

When all of his attempts of yawning, laying down and closing his eyes didn't work he finally gave in to the aspect of being awake for the procedure. I explained again how he would not feel anything. The dentist had a special gel that he puts on your gums that makes it completely numb.

"I won't feel it even if I am awake?"


"Oooooooo - OK, I am going to go play video games now."

You could have heard my exhausted sigh a mile away.

One thing I hated most about today is the terrible mood this "silly juice" put him in. He was not MY Tyler at. all. The good thing - if he EVER tries any sort of illegal substance - I will know - his bad attitude will be evidence enough for me!

Glad it is over and now he has a shiny new silver cap to show for all of his pain and suffering.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Fall Baseball

Since the end of our summer tournaments, we as a team decided to play less competitive recreational baseball for the fall season. This decision was a hard one. After being so competitive and playing "real" baseball it was hard to go back to the mentality of "it's just for fun". Fall Recreational Baseball is to learn the fundamentals. Our head coach decided that we as a team needed to learn some of the fundamentals of the next level of baseball - kid pitch. None of our kids have ever pitched or been pitched to by another kid so we did have some learning to do. Still - being with kids that are just there to have fun is really hard for a mom like me who wants to WIN!
Tyler is getting lots of needed experience catching and dong a great job as usual.
This was him daring someone to steal home.

getting a wild pitch - that happens a lot.
Bunting is a fairly new thing for our kids too. We were allowed to bunt over the summer but never quite had the situation where we needed to. Now we can practice it during a live game because after all - we are just having fun right?Stealing home is so exciting. Both of them are looking to the ump for the call......SAFE!
Oh yes that is my boy!

Now the tough part - pitching. He has the basic steps down but in the heat of the game and when your team is down 8-0 and all of the pressure is on YOUR shoulders - not a good combo. He tried so hard but just kept pitching the ball high. He did strike one player out but that wasn't good enough for him. If he doesn't strike them all out in a row he feels like he did terribly. He holds a high standard for himself.

We ended up losing this game - no surprise there - but we are learning some basic fundamentals without the competitive pressures.