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U9, U10, U11, U12, U13 & U14 Select Teams

Youth Baseball Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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WHITECAPS COACHING PHILOSOPHY

Our coaching philosophy is based on five core principles:  respect, individual/team development, accountability, climate, and empowerment.  We are a representation of our organization, which we handle with class and integrity.   Our behavior exemplifies our appreciation for our organization and the game itself.  We become aware that it is a true privilege to be a part of America’s greatest pastime.  Through the hard work, time and effort we all submit on the field and in training, we become one unit composed of 13 pieces.  The time we spend together is in such large quantities; we are able to recognize we are all on this journey together.  Our team becomes a foxhole through which we reveal our true selves and an inclusive environment is cultivated.  We believe in holding each other accountable in terms of our behavior on and off the field, our work ethic and dedication.  These are just a few key elements to a championship team. 

Respect

We must respect everyone we encounter, our opponents, officials, and most importantly our families, teammates, ourselves, and the game.  We are a mere extension of our organization, which we consider prideful and privileged.  We sprint on and off the field at all times, and we turn singles into doubles right out of the box.  These examples are just a few ways to physically show our respect for the game and the name across our chest.  I will often use the phrase, “We will stay humble in victory, and respectful in defeat.”  We will not show up opponents and we will not talk back to officials.  Through repeated practice, we will become a classy and highly respected team on and off the field. 

Individual Player Development

Our character is defined by the decisions we make and our motive behind them.  We are 13 individuals molded into one team.  There are many ways to develop our players as their own individual selves.  Some lessons can be prepared, and some can form from many different unique situations.   Every failure can be utilized as a lesson.  There is a constant battle that exists within us to always enhance ourselves.  There is metaphor in which there are two wolves.  One wolf feeds off of anger and frustration, and the other feeds off of effort and resiliency.  If I see one of our athletes struggling, I will often ask, “Which wolf are you going to feed?”  They make the decision from there.  Our goal is to ultimately feed the right wolf to the point where it becomes habitual.  We will be there for every one of our athletes in terms of enhancing their talent and skill as well as guiding them through obstacles in life.  Their years with us will be a very long but fun journey.  A river generally flows from a high point to a lower point.  Throughout its flowing pattern, it confronts multiple obstacles that inhibit its natural flow.  Each individual will have their battles, our job is to help them dig a valley to keep them moving forward.  Their years’ playing for us is a very long process.  At times we will develop each other slowly, and other times very quickly.  We must have faith in the process and work hard every day and as a result, good things will come our way. 

Empowerment

We believe that everyone can be a leader, and everyone matters.  Every one has a specific role on my team whether they know it or not.  Everyone brings a little something to the table.  A sense of empowerment creates a team dynamic that fosters in-depth thinking and ultimately a deeper understanding of each other and the game.  We must all be on the same page to have success in multiple areas.  Defensive plays, base running signs, and technique must all be done with perfection to have the greatest success.  To run what we have set in place smoothly and efficiently, we must all be on the same level of understanding as to why or how it’s done.  Our communication must be flawless to eliminate mistakes and maintain better control of the aspects of the game we have power of.  Success takes shape when our players feel they can freely ask questions and endure multiple repetitions on the road to perfection.  We will make it a point to make sure they know they are aware of this importance and that we’d rather have them ask how to do it right, than to be fearful to ask and make a mistake. 

Team Development and Accountability

We group our team development with our value of accountability.  We will hold each other to higher standard when training, our behavior on and off the field, work ethic, and dedication.  Our team becomes a foxhole.  We are a sanctuary where we can all come together, strategize, and prepare to push and protect each other for whatever challenge lies ahead.  When we all buy in to this process, we become a finely tuned machine with 13 equally important pieces.  We don’t tell each other what we want to know, but what we need to know.  When this theory becomes reality, positive results will show on the field and through team chemistry.  At the end of the day, it is the players’ decision on how successful they want to be.  If some individuals aren’t quite at the right level, their teammates will help get them there.  We will to the best of our ability, emulate hard work and commitment so our athletes know we are working just as hard as them without question.  We will hold them accountable, and in turn they will hold us accountable.  We are composed individuals with outstanding work ethic.  As our players observe this, it allows them to have someone to look up to and model.  Our behavior will reveal our unity and poise as individuals and team.  When this family is formed, our team development is allowed to improve rapidly. 

Climate

As our teams come to understand how important every teammate is, a positive climate is cultivated.   Through all of these principles of respect, individual/team development, accountability, and empowerment being put in place, we are able to create an atmosphere in which every player feels important.  It does not matter what type of background we come from because we will use those differences to our advantage.  The different experiences we all have enable us to create the opportunity to view different perspectives and recognize people for whom they are and how they can grow.  We are then able to learn to accept others and gain knowledge in areas of life we hadn’t considered prior.  A process we often find is if a player doesn’t understand something whether it is a skill or a concept, a teammate can explain it to them in a way they are able to comprehend. In turn, the teammate helping receives a deeper understanding of the skill or concept themselves.  They are given the power to find their own unique ways of teaching and demonstrated these specific skills.  Our team climate is accepting and inclusive of all who are willing to work hard and put in the effort to better themselves as individuals and team.   If we do not have team success in the wins category, we are still able to foster championship men, fathers, brothers, friends and human beings.