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Pulling girls out on defense during the inning

Aug 20, 2017
183
28
I pulled my 1B out of the game during an inning due to lack of focus and insufficient play. Lack of focus occurred on a dropped third strike where she didn’t even cover 1Bfor the throw from the catcher. Next she dropped a throw right at her from the SS. This occurred during a bracket game. I pulled her out and put another girl at 1B (she performed great).

This is 12U. Had the parent come ask me why I pulled her out and allowed other girls to make mistakes and I didnt pull them out. I told him mistakes at 1B can’t be tolerated due to the volume of balls coming that way. We can live with a dropped fly ball in OF but not at 1B. He said I was treating her unfairly. I was rude with him and told him he could take his daughter and go. I shouldn’t have done that but he asked me immediately following the game in the dugout while I was preparing the lineup for the next game.

My question is this: How do y’all handle pulling girls out during an inning? I typically wait but this was a tight bracket game. I don’t shelter or coddle players. In basketball they come out when they screw up. I feel I owe it to my team to give us best chance to win each game. TIA
 
Apr 20, 2018
686
28
SoCal
Nobody likes to do it. I think what is important here is what is said to the player when she come into the dugout. The coach or AC should pull aside and ask her if she is ok? Are you tired? Whats going on? Tell her she is better than that? Try to find out whats going on and have some compassion and encouragement. Humiliation is a horrible form of coaching.
 

sjw62000

just cleaning the dugout
Sep 1, 2018
18
13
North Carolina
As a fellow 12U coach, I understand the situation. Personally, I support your decision to pull 1B and make a change. Also, I understand what happened with the parent. It has happened to me, though I must say that I immediately apologized for my response to the parent. Having said that it is important to explain that you didn't pull the 1B for making mistakes you pulled her for lack of focus. Mistakes, booted balls, etc., these things happen, but when they happen because of lack of focus or effort, they are unacceptable.
 
Mar 28, 2014
99
18
Punishment for simple mistakes at the 12u level is overkill IMO. Laziness, focus, lack of effort, etc... all warrant a change but I wouldn't do it at the 12u level during the middle of an inning.

First you have to figure out what your goals are. To win? Or to develop players? Pulling a 12u girl during the inning is humiliating to her. Do you think she will improve because of it? Humiliation is not generally found on the list of tactics coaches use to motivate and develop 12u girl players. Or would she improve more if you were to wait until the inning was over and then sit down and have a quick chat with her and then throw in your support of her at the end of the conversation?

IMO pulling a kid during an inning is something you can do with boys but not with girls. You humiliate girls when you do that and they shut down because of it whereas boys will use it as motivation.

I think you are applying a boys coaching tactic to a girls game and that doesn't work. They are too different. It's hard because we are guys and we relate everything to how we react to situations but you can't do that with girls. You have to be more intellectual when coaching them versus emotional. It ain't easy, I can tell you that from experience!
 

pattar

Clueless..
Jun 8, 2016
2,426
63
I told him mistakes at 1B can’t be tolerated due to the volume of balls coming that way. We can live with a dropped fly ball in OF but not at 1B.
You said mistakes or mistakes due to lack of hustle/focus? People are going to make physical mistakes, whether they play 1B or OF. Lack of hustle/focus is a different story. That said, I wouldn't ever pull a kid in the middle of an inning, I don't care if it was the PGF national championships. Wait till after the inning.
 
May 24, 2013
9,493
83
So Cal
Punishment for simple mistakes at the 12u level is overkill IMO. Laziness, focus, lack of effort, etc... all warrant a change but I wouldn't do it at the 12u level during the middle of an inning.

First you have to figure out what your goals are. To win? Or to develop players? Pulling a 12u girl during the inning is humiliating to her. Do you think she will improve because of it? Humiliation is not generally found on the list of tactics coaches use to motivate and develop 12u girl players. Or would she improve more if you were to wait until the inning was over and then sit down and have a quick chat with her and then throw in your support of her at the end of the conversation?

IMO pulling a kid during an inning is something you can do with boys but not with girls. You humiliate girls when you do that and they shut down because of it whereas boys will use it as motivation.

I think you are applying a boys coaching tactic to a girls game and that doesn't work. They are too different. It's hard because we are guys and we relate everything to how we react to situations but you can't do that with girls. You have to be more intellectual when coaching them versus emotional. It ain't easy, I can tell you that from experience!
I don't agree that 12U is too young. How you handle it with the player is the most important part.

When my kid was in 10U TB, she got pulled from behind the plate in the middle of an inning a couple of times. It rubbed me the wrong way at the time, but I kept my mouth shut. Talking to my DD, she knew why she got pulled, and it motivated her to keep working on the issue that she was struggling with. She wasn't pulled to humiliate her, it was to get a player behind the plate that would be able to get the job gone in that moment.

What I found in working with 10U and 12U players is that it's the parents who feel humiliated by their kid getting pulled a lot more than it is the player. Again, it has a lot to do with how you handle it with the player.
 
Mar 28, 2014
99
18
She wasn't pulled to humiliate her
Of course the intent by the coach is not to humiliate. I don't think any coach that does it wants to humiliate the kid. But humiliation is what occurs because of the act, regardless of the intent.
 
May 24, 2013
9,493
83
So Cal
Of course the intent by the coach is not to humiliate. I don't think any coach that does it wants to humiliate the kid. But humiliation is what occurs because of the act, regardless of the intent.
Humiliation didn't seem to be involved with my DD's reaction to it. She was bummed and a bit frustrated with herself, but understanding of the coach's reasons, and motivated to fix the issues that were a factor.
 
Oct 2, 2011
3,035
63
Florida
IMO pulling a kid during an inning is something you can do with boys but not with girls. You humiliate girls when you do that and they shut down because of it whereas boys will use it as motivation.

I think you are applying a boys coaching tactic to a girls game and that doesn't work. They are too different. It's hard because we are guys and we relate everything to how we react to situations but you can't do that with girls. You have to be more intellectual when coaching them versus emotional. It ain't easy, I can tell you that from experience!
This sort of comment annoys me. Sorry, nothing personal, and I know 'everyone' says these sorts of things - but there is no such thing as 'boys coaching methods' or 'girls coaching methods' . Same with the whole play good/feel good - they are all cop outs and poor generalizations. There is no reason to be more or less specifically intellectual or emotional when coaching either gender.

Onto the original post. If you need to make a change mid-inning, there is a good way to do this without unnecessarily humiliating a player by pulling them out mid-inning. Use one of your conferences - go tell the umpire you are going to make the move, bring everyone into the circle along with your sub and then when you break, the sub goes to the position and the subbed player goes back to the bench. It is such a small thing, but it makes it much less of an aggressive and dramatic move.
 
Apr 20, 2018
686
28
SoCal
"but there is no such thing as 'boys coaching methods' or 'girls coaching methods' . "

To quote John McEnroe, "you can not be serious!"

 

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