Note: This excerpt is from Redefining Success: The 3 stats every baseball and softball coach should using.
As coaches around the country prepare for the spring baseball and softball seasons, consider this: the best coaches care about the person inside the player — knowing that lessons in teamwork, leadership and perseverance will last long after this season is over. This must be at the foundation of every coach’s mission rather than the win-at-all-cost approach we see too often at the youth and high school levels.
Let me be clear: I’m not recommending that we ignore wins and losses this season. I believe competition is an integral part of the game at every level. Instead, I encourage coaches to redefine success for their players, focusing them on process over results. Those that do know that the scoreboard will take care of itself.
After 25 years around amateur baseball, most recently as Founder & CEO of GameChanger, I’ve had the opportunity to meet and observe some of the nation’s best coaches in action. The most successful coaches shift their team’s attention away from results-based metrics like batting average, RBIs, ERA and strikeouts. Instead, they focus players (and parents!) on a core set of controllable and measurable activities that simplify the game.
For example, they teach pitchers to concentrate on first-pitch-strikes instead of strikeouts. They promote the importance of hard hit ball percentages over batting averages. They measure quality at-bats instead of RBIs. By setting metrics-driven goals for controllable processes rather than results, these coaches eliminate the over-thinking and fear of failure that often cripples young athletes. And then, as a byproduct of this approach, they get the best performance out of every player and win games.
We’ve analyzed data from over 7 million games scored on GameChanger, pulling insights and tips that will help you redefine success for your team in 2016 and beyond.
Download Redefining Success
CEO and Founder, GameChanger.
Ted is a lifelong baseball player and lover of the game. He pitched at Duke and in the minors for the Cleveland Indians. Ted co-founded GameChanger to enhance the amateur sports experience for coaches and team communities. He also co-founded Headfirst Camps, and coached Little League in NYC.