Originally Posted by M2
Fair points. Sad to hear the game has devolved that much in some places.
FWIW, I suspect lower expectations (in general) and loose rules interpretations aren't helping those players. One of the things I've learned over the years is that kids do a remarkably good job of getting with the program, provided there is a program for them to get with.
Obviously one ump can't remake an entire culture prior to a game, but if the league participants got together to make it clear they want stricter enforcement of the rule book because they're going to demand more commitment and a higher skill level from their players they might be surprised by how rapidly the quality of play improves.
In regards to inner city schools, the vast majority of the time the schools are lucky to be even fielding a team. There may be 2,000 kids in the school but they struggle to find 12 to make up a team because so many have never played before. Or they struggle to find kids who are responsible enough to show up for practice and games, stay out of trouble or get the grades to play. Cory Wade who has been in MLB for the past several years with both the Dodgers and Yankees remarkedly made it even though he played on this type of HS team.
You also have instances where one school is just quite a bit larger or just has a top notch baseball program against a smaller school or a school with a not so good baseball program. In these instances the games are usually blow outs and I have yet to hear a complaint from a coach when we open up the strike zone to get the game over with. Both coaches and usually the players want the misery to end.