HS Coach asking my DD slapper to train slappers during games

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Aug 21, 2020

Hopefully, I'm not the only one that thinks this is strange. The old coach of our HS team left in February and we got a new coach just a week before tryouts. 53 girls tried out, no cuts, but with 9 returning seniors, no chance for my DD to make varsity. During tryouts, she slapped, was put on JV, and swings down occasionally to Froshmore so she can get more circle time.

This is where things get strange - after the last JV game, the new HS coach comes up to DD and says she's turning around 2 other speedy players and wants DD to help train them as slappers. DD said she would like to help out and when during practices would Coach like to do this. Coach says, not during practices, but do it during the bench time in games. That just sounds absolutely bizarre to me - this is when the players should be supporting other players / warming up to get into the game, not training on skills they are unfamiliar with.

Out of curiosity, I did look up our new coach's playing background - turns out she was a slapper in travel ball and college. So this is something she has years of experience in.

I'm not sure what to tell DD. If this is a leadership opportunity where she can help get some speeders on base so next year they'll have 3 slappers on varsity, that's one thing, but it has not been messaged that way. The only thing I have said is to check with the JV coach and see if he wants 2-3 players to work on this during the game. If yes, do it, if no - cheer on the team.
Aug 21, 2020
If the JV coach wants to keep his job he is probably going to be on board…

That’s actually something I should mention. Because of the rushed hiring, the head coach asked for volunteers from the town softball association. So the JV coach is an unpaid volunteer with a kid on the JV team and is/was a 12U coach maybe 5 years ago.

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Aug 1, 2019
Stay in the good graces of HC? Only your DD and you can answer that.
-I doubt slapping training will last all seven innings of a game, especially every game. Still plenty of time to learn from the game and cheer.
-Supporting teammates goes beyond cheering.
"Bench Culture" may indicate if this is a better use of time. Girls not watching game, talking about everything but softball; your DD's time is better spent working on skill away from that bench.
-Also a step toward developing a possible future coach. Playing careers end. The game doesn't.
May 20, 2016
Kind of a weird time to be turning girls around and trying to teach them slapping. While they may have stayed at a Holiday Inn last night, it's not that easy. I am sure you know this as a parent of a slapper. My DD is one as well and has taken years to be proficient. Not sure how you are going to get someone who is opposite handed to turn around and figure it out in a 1.5 month season. It's hard enough to hit a ball standing still, never mind taking a step backwards, then two forwards and making contact to put a ball in a specific spot.

AS per your original questions i'd say why not help? Can't hurt. Even though it seems like a bad plan by the head coach.
May 17, 2012
That just sounds absolutely bizarre to me - this is when the players should be supporting other players / warming up to get into the game, not training on skills they are unfamiliar with.

How many runs per game do you think "supporting other players" brings to the table? Absolutely zero. Why aren't the players staying warm by running between innings?

Coaches, with all the decisions they make during the game, have very little impact on the outcome of any one game. How much impact do you think subs or players on the bench have on the outcome of the game? Next to zero. Do something useful and share the knowledge of slapping during the game when you can.

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