Mason Picks the Tigers for Tee-ball 2008

Mon, 02 June 2008, 3:00 pm

Saturday was Mason’s first day of Tee-ball for 2008. He’s playing in the 5/6 league that’s run by the Webster Athletic Association. Last year, his first season, Mason played for the White Sox. In Tee-ball you bring a pre-paid registration card to the park and you wander around until you find a team you like. So, the anticipation was killing him as we arrived at Kent Park.

Picking the Team
I wore my Cubs hat that day and wouldn’t you know it, the first team we ran into was the Cubs. We asked if they had room on the team and they said they had one spot left. Surprisingly, Mason passed it up. So we walked around a bit more as Mason passed up the Mets, Dodgers, and Athletics. Then we saw THE ONE. As soon as Mason saw the “tough looking” Tigers logo on the shirts of some player, he knew that was the team he needed to play for. I knew his reasoning as I had just spent the prior 2 weeks watching him critique the mascots of all the major league clubs. He got really annoyed with dopey mascots like the Blue Jays’ ‘Ace’, and the ‘Swinging Friar’ of the Padres.

Mason Chooses the Tigers
Mason Chooses the Tigers for its ‘tough logo’

Opening Ceremony and Practice
The league is very smart. They tear through a potentially grueling opening ceremony, complete with national anthem and ceremonial first pitch in about 10 minutes. This allowed plenty of time for the boys to get right out there and start practicing together. Mason started right off in throwing drills where he showed a lot more strength than last year. He was able to get the ball in the air to the coach.

Mason in Throwing Drills
Mason participates in throwing drills

Batting practice was also held to get the kids familiar with swinging the bat, and running the bases. Mason had no problem remembering what to do.

Mason Practices Swing
Mason takes some batting practice

Pllllaaaayyyy Ballllll!
After a drink and a snack, which is the kids’ favorite part, they got down to the business of their first game. The Tigers first opponent was the Red Sox. We were first up and Mason was 4th or 5th in the order. When he got to the plate he hit the ball past the pitcher and it actually made it beyond the infield. This was a first for Mason so he was very excited. He ran with a full head of steam to first base and had a huge smile on his face. I knew after that he was happy to be a Tiger.

Mason runs to first
Mason runs to first base after a big hit

We saw the Red Sox take batting practice. A few of them could really hit. So I guess I wasn’t too surprised when their first batter hit line drive went right toward one of our Tigers and knocked him down. Luckily they play with soft balls in tee-ball so the boy was fine. After both teams batted around the game was over. One inning is definitely enough on the first day. Next week they’ll likely get in at least 2 of the 3 innings they are supposed to play. The best part of any team sport for the kids is learning sportsmanship. So I always enjoy them chanting “2-4-6-8-who do we appreciate” and shaking the little hands of their opponents. That topped off a great opening day of Tee-Ball.

Mason’s Tee-ball cheer
The Tigers cheer for the Red Sox after opening day

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