Getting back to the basics

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 14, 2005

Whenever someone starts to feel the strain of their job, or starts to feel the "burnout" meter jumping into the red, the best way to cure it is to go back to the basics. A friend once had a hat that read K.I.S., in bright bold red letters. Underneath those letters was the simple meaning- Keep It Simple.

Sometimes, this job pushes a person to over think things. Monday night I had the opportunity to do something that I have not actively done in a long while. That's the chance to go watch some youth baseball.

Sitting in the stands it occurred to me how in the grand scheme of things, sports are meant to be fun.

If a person strikes out, it's no big deal as evident by a batter for the 9-10 White Sox. This child, settled into the box on one of the fields at Day Park and took his hacks at the ball.

When the at bat ended the batter struck out, he lifted the front of his helmet up and skipped back to the dugout.

Tell me the last time you saw a professional player skip to the dugout after striking out.

Also, youth sports gives you the opportunity to see the unlikely hero.

Lakendale Cook, stepped into the box at Beeland Park and faced the pitcher. After taking the White Sox pitcher to a 2-2 count, Cook swings and laces a single to right field scoring a pair of runs and pushing his team up 4-0 in the first inning. The look on Cook's face was priceless and screamed "I didn't mean to do that."

The look on his proud poppa's face tells a different story.

When I was getting his name for the center photo on today's sports page, his dad Michael shouted, "That's my boy!"

Also, in the first night of action at Day Park, fans in attendance could have seen a glimpse of the future.

Nine-year-old Chip Taylor pitched a no-hitter for the Astros. He fell

one batter short of the perfect game though, allowing a walk in the second inning, but still, imagine how proud his father, Keith would be to see him doing that while wearing a Fort Dale uniform. Think about this, Mark Mulder, Greg Maddux, Matt Clement and Curt Schilling all got their start in the youth leagues.

Hey, don't forget about the softball players. In one game Connor Murphy did some thing that not many pitchers have been able to do. She saddled 10 batters with strikeouts through five innings.

I can tell that this season is going to be a fun and interesting one.

It's that simple.

Griffin Pritchard is the sports editor of the Greenville Advocate. He can be reached via email: or via phone, 382-3111 ext. 122.