How was your week?
If you are like millions of parents across the United States, if your children are of a certain age, you spent a lot of it at a baseball or softball field.
They are the boys and girls of summer, keeping the lights on late into the evening for all levels from t-ball to Little League to city leagues to Legion baseball to travel teams.
Was it a good week at the field for your family?
Maybe little Johnny hit his first home run. Or maybe it was the first game where Johnny wasn’t staring off in the wrong direction when the one ball was hit anywhere close to him in the outfield.
Maybe little Susie had her best pitching performance. Or maybe she had her first throw from third base that actually landed past the pitching circle.
The littlest of accomplishments are something for parents to be proud about for the littlest of the ballplayers.
But are your miniature athletes-to-be proud of you?
That’s a question that has to be asked more and more in youth sports.
How was your week?
Some parents in Lakewood, Colo., can answer: “Well, I went to my 7-year-old son’s baseball game. We got into an all-out brawl with other parents. It’s the 13-year-old umpire’s fault. What a jerk!”
It was the youth baseball video that went viral last week that didn’t involve a catcher jumping sky high and then coming down to try to frame the pitch.
And it was ugly.
Reports are that it started when parents and coaches were upset by a call made by the 13-year-old umpire. They took the next logical step and stormed the field to start their own impression of a World Wrestling Entertainment Royal Rumble.
The players — the 7-year-olds — can be seen running away as the fighting begins. No word yet on whether they immediately put themselves up for adoption.
Imagine what that 13-year-old umpire is going through. Suffering through this isn’t worth the big bucks that umpiring baseball for 7-year-olds pays out.
It’s bad enough what adult officials face. I’ve seen a few sporting events during my years, and rarely are the refs as bad or as against your team as you think they are.
Sure, some officials have an off day. Some aren’t as good as they should be.
But the same can be said for any other paid position, whether it is writer, janitor, chef, CEO, president of the United States, etc.
Not sure what kind of adult could become so incensed about the calls made by someone who has yet to shave on a weekly basis that breaking out into a brawl seemed like the logical decision.
So much for the stereotype that legalizing marijuana can mellow a whole state out.
The video is disturbing. One man in a T-shirt and shorts is seen sucker punching another man in the back of the head.
Another video from the incident shows what appears to be a very pregnant woman waving a bat while saying, “I don’t give a (naughty word that starts with the same letter as fetus).”
Maybe she wanted to help her child become the first WWE tag team champion while in utero?
There was no sexism here. There were women throwing punches at each other, too, not just the dads.
Children are much luckier to be raised in a two-parent household.
Wouldn’t it be great to tell that story at family reunions for years to come about the night that Mommy and Daddy both got arrested at your baseball game when you were 7 years old?
Parents taking their children’s sporting events too seriously isn’t a new thing.
Some are trying to relive their glory days through their offspring. Some see their child’s success (or lack thereof) in sports reflecting on them as a parent.
Some just get crazed and think every call has to go in favor of their kid’s team or else it is an evil conspiracy or personal slight.
This brawl is a really, really extreme example of those ugly parents in youth sports.
Maybe it can open a few eyes. Let the children — especially those still in grade school — have fun playing sports. It’s not whether you win or lose, it’s whether or not your parents brawled to make you forfeit the game.
We don’t need more incidents like this one.
Thanks to these knuckleheads, there was a meth-fueled attack squirrel in Alabama that I didn’t even get a chance to write about.