Not too long ago, I received a link from a friend to an article titled, Some Rules Kids Won’t Learn In School, by Charles J. Sykes.
The rules focus on teaching kids personal responsibility, treating people right, and giving kids a perspective on how the real world works.
Recently, I read an adaption of these rules for baseball players from a high school baseball coach.
I thought these were GREAT life lessons for any pitcher to know, and Coach May was kind enough to let me share them with you below:
Rule #1: Baseball is not fair. Get used to it.
Rule #2: Your coach probably does not care about your self esteem as a player. He will expect you to bring something to the table that can help him win before you will make the team or be in the lineup.
Rule #3: You will not make a College roster until you prove you can make a High School roster. You will have to earn each step on this journey, so take it one step at a time.
Rule #4: If you think your High School coach is tough, just wait till you get a College coach.
Rule #5: Catching bullpens is not beneath you. Shagging BP is not beneath you. Every time you step on the field it is an opportunity. Take advantage of it.
Rule #6: If you mess up, it’s not the coach’s fault. It’s not your teammates fault. Don’t whine about what you don’t have or what you want to have. Don’t look for excuses find solutions. Take responsibility for your situation and overcome whatever obstacles you must overcome.
Rule #7: Before you were born, your parents actually had a life of their own. Once you came along, they devoted most if not all of their time helping you chase your dream. So before you forget where you came from and how you got where you are, take a moment to thank them for all they have done for you and are doing for you. You may not know it, but you’re not alone in this ride.
Rule #8: You may be in a situation where you can fail many times and still be in the lineup. You may be in a situation where you can work just as hard as everyone else and be just fine. But there will come a day when your opportunities to prove yourself will be limited. So learn to take advantage of every opportunity. You may not get another one. And learn to work harder than everyone around you. Working as hard as everyone else means you are working just hard enough to be average like everyone else. Learn to work harder than everyone else in order to be special. There will come a day when working as hard as everyone else will simply not be enough.
Rule #9: No one is going to check on you to see if your doing what you should be doing in the off season. What you do when no one is watching will determine what you are capable of doing when everyone is watching. You are free to choose what you do in the off season. You are not free to choose the consequences of your actions. Hard work and dedication does not go unrewarded in life. Somewhere someone is working very hard to make sure you sit the bench behind them. What are you doing?
Rule #10: You can spend your time watching other people live out their dreams. Or you can spend that time working towards a goal of living out yours.
Rule #11: Be nice to everyone you meet in this game. You never know who you are talking to. You never know who they know. Treat other people the way you would want to be treated. Maybe one day you will be the worst player on your team. Maybe you will be the guy who never see’s the field. Maybe you would like to be treated with the same respect regardless of your standing on the team. And maybe that weak player will one day be a stud and his word on what type of kid you are is the difference in you getting an offer or not? But do these things NOT because you might be rewarded for doing them. Do them because in your heart you know it’s the right thing to do.
I hope you enjoyed Coach May’s rules as much as I did, and will share them with a pitcher that you know.