Play Ball!


The start of baseball/softball season has arrived with the Memrial Day weekend. Ri played on Friday night, which was strange since we have always played on Saturday after the parade. We are hurting for pitchers this year so I’ve been working with Ri on the mechanics of fast-pitch. She’s got the strong body to swing that ball over her head and swivel those hips and whip it over the plate. During practices, she just wasn’t consistent and didn’t have her groove. She also doesn’t have the desire to go out and practice for hours to improve. But the times I’d get her out with me, we’d continue to work on it. And then one day, I had her concentrate on turning her hips so they pointed to the side and then return them center towards the catcher. She did it and pitched it perfectly. And again. Something clicked in her. And so it was – she started our first game as pitcher. 

And she pitched awesome for her first time. She only walked one batter and struck out a few! I was so excited for her. And it made the game go so much faster watching her pitch two innings because she was the main attraction. It made Jon and I nervous as heck but it was cool. And it’s even more fun for me because I was a fast-pitch pitcher; so to see Ri going at it makes me smile. 

  
The girls lost the game but held their own throughout. They had one bad inning that doomed them but I was much happier about their play than I thought I’d be. They were bummed for three seconds about the loss but then quickly recovered when they found out they got a free treat from the concession stand .

  
Mario got to be in his first parade this year since he’s finally in baseball and not tee-ball. He was excited to be able to ride in a truck with his buddies. I made him promise over and over that he would not pelt anyone with candy. I should have made Ri promise it, too, because her and her teammates were winging candy at kids. 

   
   

By about half way down 1st Avenue, the girls started to get tired and thirsty. They began to peter out. Surprisingly, they still had candy (in years past 25 pounds was gone in three blocks). But Ri got them pepped up again by cheering “we’re number one not two not three not four….” We arrived at the field and participated in the Opening ceremony. Grandview feels like Mayberry on this day. Everyone is lined up for the parade and everyone comes to the field afterwards to watch the ceremony and running the bases. 

   
 

Mario played his game later in the day at 3:45. We went home after the parade and wrestled a while to get him ready (he is my child – he’d rather stay active than rest before a game). Ri got invited to the pool with Henley – her first pool trip of the year.

 
Mario looked like a bad mo’ fo’ out on the field with his shades and his snug baseball pants. 

  
He refused to go out on the field without his shades. He didn’t have a chance to catch a pop up fly but he did get a grounder hit to him… and he missed it. But he did decent hitting – went 2 for 3. Of course, he struck out once which really irked him. He stomped out of the box and whipped off his helmet. “My coach can’t pitch” he told Jon. He was accurate in his statement – his coach threw some horrible ones to him. But, he needed to brush it off. I’m sure he likes Jon being in the dugout with him even if he acts like he doesn’t. 

The game finished an hour and a half later. It was rather long but much better than tee-ball. I can’t wait to see him snag a pop-up next game; he gets a DQ gift card if he does! 

  

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