Coaching Prison Softball (part 2)

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Coaching prison softball has been great so far. It teaches me how to deal with different personalities in a delicate, respectful way. At times, some of these guys piss me off. It’s in that moment when I must lead by example and “Keep It Positive.” Let me explain:

Mike is our 3rd baseman. He’s been playing on this team for the past 3 loosing seasons. He occasionally skips practice. He complains a lot. He makes a lot of errors. So I moved him to catcher. He was pissed! I pulled him aside and explained that I liked him as a person, but his attitude and performance is not in line with our team philosophy. He just rolled his eyes and his body language sucked.

So when our 3rd game rolled around, I benched Mike. He didn’t even get to play catcher. He sat on the sideline and watched us smash our opponents 14-2. After the game, he didn’t join the team on the mound for our post game celebration. I yelled for him to join us. He ignored me.

I later approached him. I told him that he’s still a part of the team and there might be a time when we need him. Three games are on visiting days this year. So it’s important to have a quality bench. But Mike wasn’t trying to hear it. He simply doesn’t have a winning attitude. He’s a big cry baby.

Now in the past, I would have told him to “fuck off.” But today, that’s not what I’m about. I spoke to him with a kind tone and gave him several chances to get with the program. In the end I had to inform him that he’s off the team. I felt bad. But I know it was for the best.

We just played our 4th game. We have a new 3rd baseman and a new catcher. They got those positions because they have great attitudes and they embrace the team philosophies:

“Keep It Positive” & “Commit To A Championship”

We won that game 15-0! We’ve now outscored our opponents 53-8! This domination validates the power of positive thinking and positive attitudes.

I know that Mike and all the other guys I cut from the team don’t like me. But that’s okay. Because they ALL have negative attitudes, and I have no place for that in my life.

I focus on the 16 men on my roster who are all positive and committed to a championship. They show me a great deal of love and respect as I lead them down the path to victory by way of one of the BEST prison softball teams EVER!

To Be Continued…

Author: Steven & Suzie Jennings

She was raised as a Mormon, and he is a convict serving 43 years in prison. This blog offers a glimpse into two vastly different worlds that somehow came crashing together. Join them on their journey through prison life & married life.

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