It's the age old question, "do you punish a kid because of his parent"? We are about to pick our travel teams for next year and we have this kid he is 10 and very talented but his father has been and continues to be a cancer to the teams his son plays on. For example; i overheard him the other night questioning other parents why the coach called their kid out on knockout! I have coached this kid in the past and I have seen first hand how frustrated the other parents get over this dad and it becomes a problem when the parents are not wanting to go to the games or practices, this trickles down to the kids. I have talked to him about it but I think he doesnt realize what he does...not the sharpest tool in the shed! what are your thoughts because I would hate to see the kid get cut because his dad, but I can't let the dad hurt the team either.
Bye Bye !!!
It's a Travel Team, you decide who is on the team and who isn't.
A PITA Dad is enough reason to cut little Johnny (IMO).
BTW, if Dad asked my why his kid didn't make the team I'd tell him (then again, I'm a pretty big guy and I know how to take care of myself !!!).
Just my 2 cents:
I agree totally with Lou. What some do not realize is just how important a role parents play in team chemistry, especially with travel ball where the parents and kids spend a great deal of time together on the road/in tournaments. Because of the money, travel and time the parents have vested in their child, they are a much bigger part of the overall team atmosphere that many think. A poor parent or two can be the downfall of an otherwise good season. If you think this could be a problem going in, nip it in the bud.
Do what's best for the team as a whole, and leave daddy at home.
Before taking the last-resort act of cutting the kid, explain to the dad that his presence and attitude are screwing up the team. Tell him that his son will make the squad, but only if he stays as far away from the game's participants as possible.
When I was a board member in my local LL, we had a PITA dad similar to the one you describe. The league president basically read him the riot act and told him he wasn't allowed at practices and could not sit in the stands during games if he wanted his son to stay in the league. Dad actually complied, and set up his pickup truck beyond the outfield fence, where he would put a lounge chair in the bed to watch the games from there. We could hear him complain about a call every now and then, but from that distance, it was just white noise.
If it's a team in a league I'd ignore the dad. The problem with travel is spending a weekend together can drive away players when the parents can't stomach a few parents.
Make some team rules and have parents and players sign a contract. Have a meeting to review the rules. The first offense is a warning. The second offense is removal. Have a one on one with the dad. Tell him he's the reason these rules exists.
I had two such parents when I coached 10U. They had no problem saying their kids were all this and that kid stinks. Both their kids failed at 13U on the 60/90 field.
Cut the kid and don't look back. Life's too short to deal with dillholes.
The dad may be a dillhole, but maybe the kid isn't. Maybe the kid is a very quiet, respectful person. Why hold a talented kid back because dad is a dillhole?
Life may be short for this kid, if he keeps getting kicked off teams because of his dad.
Rules need to be set up and enforced for dillhole parents.
Your first responsibility is to the team. Tough love is best, especially when the kid is young enough to be helped. I am hoping that someone of consequence in the team leadership has talked to the dad in the past. Let him know that the kid's baggage is not compatible with the team's best interests.
Do not pick up the kid.
One of the best scouting moves I made at tryouts was making a note that a good player had a PITA grandparent/guardian. I did not draft him and watched as the team that got him was thrown into turmoil with the kid eventually being pulled by grandpa and not finishing the season. I fear a similar scenario for you.
I have spoken with the dad in the past and since then he believes i don't like him ( which is correct) and I am unfair to his kid (which is not correct). I have struggled with this choice because I really like the kid, but I just can't let the dad ruin the team. It sounds like we have all seen it and one parent can ruin a team. I am leaning toward not picking the kid for the sake of the whole. Any more advice is greatly appreciated.
Slugo, IMO, your making the right decision. I hate hurting kids because of their PITA relatives, but have found not only will they cause problematic issues amougnst the other kids on team, they will do their best to undermine you, while sitting with the other parents during your games. Most knowledgeable parents will dismiss it, but others with little baseball savvy, will listen to these PITAS. tm
The only thing that can "partially" overcome a PITA Dad is a very very very GLM !!! ;o)
Rock, Scissors, Paper
GLM, PITA dad, Talented kid
T.G. thats what it comes down to I think!! Maybe i will close practices and put the team mom on him during the games!! I am going to talk to him one more time and see if he responds during the rest of fall season. If not I will have to cut the kid this year and tell the PITA to get it under control for next year.
Talking to the dad just makes them believe you either don't like them, the kid, or both. That just simply create fodder for the backroom discussions of dissent that are inevitably going to happen. People who are dillholes never believe themselves to be dillholes. The best you can do is respond positively when they approach you after being thrown off other teams. At that point they may be willing to make some changes. But if you "lay down the law" before they understand the dynamic you will be the dillhole in their eyes and you can't expect them to be quiet about it cuz they won't.
Making a bad situation for a whole team because you want to be nice to one unfortunate only ends in 12, rather that 1, unfortunate kids.
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