There are a number of different tips for managing a baseball team that should be considered when taking on this difficult coaching job, whether you are Bobby Valentine or a youth baseball coach with elementary school kids. Baseball is a difficult sport to manage, as there are a lot of moving parts and a number of players who you have to deal with, both physically and mentally. As baseball is one of the more complex games out there, the better you can implement different coaching strategies amongst your players, the better results you will usually have in each game. Read on for some baseball team managing tips.
As the quality of baseball teams are often based on the attitude and concentration of their players, the more enjoyable of an atmosphere a manager can create in the clubhouse, the better the players will usually perform in general. While things shouldn't be too loose around the clubhouse for a baseball team, like the beer and fried chicken fiasco that occurred with the Boston Red Sox, stress will erode player's performance, as baseball is a game that is played on the four-inch field of your mind most of the time. So managers should keep things light and fun, solve personal problems players may have with each other and make players want to be there, rather then somewhere else.
The better you know your players strengths and weaknesses, the more you will know when to play certain players and when to sit certain players, and you will also be better able to improve players' weaknesses in practice. Stats and average will tell you a lot, so players who are weaker hitters or are slumping at the plate should concentrate on hitting in practice every day, while players who have had some difficulties in the field should work on fielding more every day. Knowing when to push this and when not to push this will make the team more organized and also give them an idea of their own strengths and weaknesses. This will help them to become better players for themselves, as well as the rest of the team as a whole.
Fundamentals are key in any sport, but especially baseball, as doing basic things in every aspect of the sport will make even seasoned players better. Every practice should begin with the exact same drills that hammer out fundamentals, so that doing these integral, basic things become second nature to your players. These drills should include picking up ground balls, turning and throwing drills, catching pop flys, bunting, and batting practice.
Keep a stat sheet that all the players can see that details how everyone does in practice, as well as in games. As athletes are natural competitors, they will pay attention to who is taking practice seriously and who isn't, as well as who is taking games seriously and who isn't. It will also be a clear indication to you and any other coaches as to who is taking practice seriously and who isn't, or how players learn and evolve from practice to actual games. This will make the team play together at all times, which is key to a winning team throughout the season.