“If you want more playing time, you have to put in the practice.” I can’t tell you how many times I heard this as a young player and said this as a coach.
When I coached little league one young player kept asking if he could pitch in the next game. He was a good kid, left hander, threw the ball hard. But, he had absolutely no control. He hadn’t practiced his pitching drills. I had to give him the classic line.
When his dad came to visit and issue his complaints, I shared with him. “I would love to have your son pitch. I don’t have a lefty right now. He throws hard. But he will walk every batter, or worse, hit them. Then, I will have other parents after me.”
The dad didn’t realize the other kids pitching had been practicing for years, thousands of repetitions to master the finite skills needed to throw strikes. So, I took the opportunity to teach the dad, who never came to the practices, the pitching drills. “Work with your son at least 3 nights a week for the next year and by next season, he should be ready.”
Surprisingly, he did. His son pitched several games the next year. Whether it’s little league, mastering interview skills or any profession, “if you want more playing time, put in the practice.”
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