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Thread: Little League Ethics

  1. #1
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    Little League Ethics

    So here's a problem of situational ethics for all you lovers of situational ethics problems. A chance to weigh in with your opinion. It's a thing that happened today...

    Today my son's A farm team (8-9 year olds) played the Angels, a team from a neighboring town. They'd played the week before and my son's team (Astros) beat them 10-0. But today the Angels came to play and after three innings they're up 9-2.

    At that point the coach of the Angels announces that some of his players need to leave because of other commitments. That brings his team down to 7 players. A lot of talk ensues. There seems to be some disagreement among the opposing coaches about what to do. We can't hear the discussion from the stands but at one point one of the Angels coaches calls out "You knew about this before we started."

    Anyway, they eventually resume play and it looks like an agreement has been struck--the Angels will bat with their 7 players. When it's their turn in the field, kids from the Astros will platoon at center and right for them (the two positions least likely to come into play).

    Over the next two innings the Astros come back and by the end of the 5th the score is Angels 11, Astros 10. In those two innings only one ball is hit towards an Astros player playing in the Angels outfield, at that particular moment a kid named Max. Max is not our best player and does not make the best play on the ball. But it's clearly an honest attempt, no runs result, and everything's fine.

    In the top of the 6th (final) inning the Angels score 2 more runs. 13-10 now.

    In the bottom of the 6th the Astros score a run, pick up a couple of outs, and put two men on base. So it's two on, two out, 13-11.

    Now at that moment, playing right field for the Angels is this Astros kid named Erik. Erik is a piece of work. He is a bully. Not a physical one but a psychological one. He is arrogant, mean, spiteful. I hate to sound so negative that about any kid but he's been that way from the first day his family moved to town three years ago. He orders his mom around in public, talks up to teachers and adults, is unbelievably cruel to other kids. Some kids who tease maybe you can say they're unintentionally cruel. Not Erik. He goes out of his way to hurt feelings and belittle other kids kids. I don't think he has any friends. He seems not to care. When the Astros beat the Angels the week before Erik stood by the dugout crowing at the other team "Ha, ha, we crushed you and you cried. Ha, ha, we crushed you and you cried." That kind of kid.

    Well, the next batter for the Astros hits a good shot to, you guessed it, right field, which is right in front of the stands where I and the other Astros parents are sitting. The moment the ball leaves the bat Erik starts to laugh. It bounces in front of him. He picks it up, drops it. Picks it up, drops it. Picks it up a third time and then heaves it, to no one in particular, towards the Angels dugout. He's giggling to himself the whole time. Two runs score and the batter gets to third. After the play Erik turns to the Astros bleacher, smirking, shrugs his shoulders and says, "Oh well. I guess I did a Bill Buckner."

    No sound from the Angels dugout but the Astros parents who saw the play are livid. One of the parents, who is himself a coach of one of the majors teams is calling "Not cool, Erik. Not cool at all." Erik just laughs. The next batter hits a single, the runner on third scores, game over. Astros 14, Angels 13.

    By now, however, it's sunk in to the Angels coach what has happened. There is a hushed but furious discussion on the mound between him and the Astros coach who is shrugging his shoulders. The Angels file out quietly. The Astros kids celebrate, happy at the win, but unlike our other games the coach's post-game talk in the dugout is very terse and very brief. The coach who was in the stands had spoken to him and let him know (in case he'd missed it) that Erik had intentionally blown the play). Unlike most wins where people hang around after, within minutes everyone is gone.

    So my question is, what do you think should happen?

    Some of the Astros parents, even though they were angry at Erik, took the position, "Well, the Angels basically forfeited the game anyway the moment they couldn't put enough players on the field."

    No doubt the Angels coaches think, "When the Astros agreed to loan us players they committed they would play with integrity. They didn't. So they should forfeit." (An aside, when my son went in to play right field for the Angels, just in case he had any doubts, I yelled to him, "Hey Ben, you play your best out there.")

    The irony is that the hit to right field was a good one. Better than 50% chance it would have scored the two runners anyway. So in some ways who Erik really cheated was his own teammates. But they make a big deal in Little League that it's not about winning or losing. It's about sportsmanship and fair play. So taking the game as a win does not seem right. I think if I were the Astros coach I would call the opposing team and say why don't we call it a draw. And then Erik would spend the entire next game on the bench. If the coach does not call the kid on this I'll be very disappointed.
    Last edited by BushyTheBeaver; 05-06-2012 at 12:05 AM.

  2. #2
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    [QUOTE=BushyTheBeaver;4460872]So here's a problem of situational ethics for all you lovers of situational ethics problems. A chance to weigh in with your opinion. It's a thing that happened today...

    Today my son's A farm team (8-9 year olds) played the Angels, a team from a neighboring town. They'd played the week before and my son's team (Astros) beat them 10-0. But today the Angels came to play and after three innings they're up 9-2.

    At that point the coach of the Angels announces that some of his players need to leave because of other commitments. That brings his team down to 7 players. A lot of talk ensues. There seems to be some disagreement among the opposing coaches about what to do. We can't hear the discussion from the stands but at one point one of the Angels coaches calls out "You knew about this before we started."

    Anyway, they eventually resume play and it looks like an agreement has been struck--the Angels will bat with their 7 players. When it's their turn in the field, kids from the Astros will platoon at center and right for them (the two positions least likely to come into play).

    Over the next two innings the Astros come back and by the end of the 5th the score is Angels 11, Astros 10. In those two innings only one ball is hit towards an Astros player playing in the Angels outfield, at that particular moment a kid named Max. Max is not our best player and does not make the best play on the ball. But it's clearly an honest attempt, no runs result, and everything's fine.

    In the top of the 6th (final) inning the Angels score 2 more runs. 13-10 now.

    In the bottom of the 6th the Astros score a run, pick up a couple of outs, and put two men on base. So it's two on, two out, 13-11.

    Now at that moment, playing right field for the Angels is this Astros kid named Erik. Erik is a piece of work. He is a bully. Not a physical one but a psychological one. He is arrogant, mean, spiteful. I hate to sound so negative that about any kid but he's been that way from the first day his family moved to town three years ago. He orders his mom around in public, talks up to teachers and adults, is unbelievably cruel to other kids. Some kids who tease maybe you can say they're unintentionally cruel. Not Erik. He goes out of his way to hurt feelings and belittle other kids kids. I don't think he has any friends. He seems not to care. When the Astros beat the Angels the week before Erik stood by the dugout crowing at the other team "Ha, ha, we crushed you and you cried. Ha, ha, we crushed you and you cried." That kind of kid.

    Well, the next batter for the Astros hits a good shot to, you guessed it, right field, which is right in front of the stands where I and the other Astros parents are sitting. The moment the ball leaves the bat Erik starts to laugh. It bounces in front of him. He picks it up, drops it. Picks it up, drops it. Picks it up a third time and then heaves it, to no one in particular, towards the Angels dugout. He's giggling to himself the whole time. Two runs score and the batter gets to third. After the play Erik turns to the Astros bleacher, smirking, shrugs his shoulders and says, "Oh well. I guess I did a Bill Buckner."

    No sound from the Angels dugout but the Astros parents who saw the play are livid. One of the parents, who is himself a coach of one of the majors teams is calling "Not cool, Erik. Not cool at all." Erik just laughs. The next batter hits a single, the runner on third scores, game over. Astros 14, Angels 13.

    By now, however, it's sunk in to the Angels coach what has happened. There is a hushed but furious discussion on the mound between him and the Astros coach who is shrugging his shoulders. The Angels file out quietly. The Astros kids celebrate, happy at the win, but unlike our other games the coach's post-game talk in the dugout is very terse and very brief. The coach who was in the stands had spoken to him and let him know (in case he'd missed it) that Erik had intentionally blown the play). Unlike most wins where people hang around after, within minutes everyone is gone.

    [B]So my question is, what do you think should happen?[/B]

    Some of the Astros parents, even though they were angry at Erik, took the position, "Well, the Angels basically forfeited the game anyway the moment they couldn't put enough players on the field."

    No doubt the Angels coaches think, "When the Astros agreed to loan us players they committed they would play with integrity. They didn't. So they should forfeit." (An aside, when my son went in to play right field for the Angels, just in case he had any doubts, I yelled to him, "Hey Ben, you play your best out there.")

    The irony is that the hit to right field was a good one. Better than 50% chance it would have scored the two runners anyway. So in some ways who Erik really cheated was his own teammates. But they make a big deal in Little League that it's not about winning or losing. It's about sportsmanship and fair play. So taking the game as a win does not seem right. I think if I were the Astros coach I would call the opposing team and say why don't we call it a draw. And then Erik would spend the entire next game on the bench. If the coach does not call the kid on this I'll be very disappointed.[/QUOTE]


    Easy, take Erik for a long, slow ride and convince him, enough to make him pee a little, that the same "accident" you had planned for your a-hole cat will befall him should he ever pull that kind of stunt again. Of course, that entails giving him the a-hole cat back story, hence the long slow ride. If you'd rather remain silent on the ride to heighten the fear (which I recommend), call up the dick-cat thread on an ipad or smart phone and glare at him the whole time he's reading.

    You're welcome.

  3. #3
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    Win stands as is the moment the other team didn't have enough to play...esp since they knew they wouldn't have enough to finish ahead of time. To be able to play at all after their kids left was just a bonus for everyone.

    Erik kid looks well on his way to be a full adult dooshbag Pats fan...maybe even works for the organization some day. ;) Seriously, kid has a long road ahead of him judging by the path he's going down. Dunno if Little League will let you take any action against him such as benching or the like. An interesting question.

  4. #4
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    The fact that some of the Angels players had to leave is bull****. Other commitments? Your commitment is to your team. If they don't have enough players to field a team they should forfeit; the Astros did them a huge favor to make up for the incompetence of their coach.

    That being said, Erik is a huge doosh. Massive. If I were the Astros coach I'd give him all the sucky chores leading up to the next game.

  5. #5
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    Angels should forefit. But kids wanna play (and they should) You want to play with 7? Ok. You get 7 positional players to put wherever you want. Those bottom 2 spots in the lineup become automatic outs. 1 out if youre feeling generous

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    [QUOTE=Bonhomme Richard;4460895]The fact that some of the Angels players had to leave is bull****. Other commitments? Your commitment is to your team. If they don't have enough players to field a team they should forfeit; the Astros did them a huge favor to make up for the incompetence of their coach.

    That being said, Erik is a huge doosh. Massive. If I were the Astros coach I'd give him all the sucky chores leading up to the next game.[/QUOTE]

    Come on man. These aren't high school kids. Sounds like it's not even a "travel" team. Probably a 1/4 of the kids on the rec teams don't even care if they're there or not. Since it was several of them that had to leave, what if they had to leave to go to their 1st communion? Should they have blown that off? What if they committed to something else before the baseball schedule came out? Where does their committment lie then? The answer isn't always so easy.

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    It is the parent's fault. You should go beat up Erik's dad.

    Nothing will make your son prouder of you. :yes:

    Then teach the kids on the team to call Erik, "Erica" when he has his hissy fits or screws up.

    He needs to get singled out. Bully the bully.

    Teach him a lesson now and you will be doing him a favor. As of right now he has a one-way ticket to Meth Town.



    P.S. I think bullies are a good thing. :eek:

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    I'm sorry, but what did Erik do wrong exactly?

    SAR I

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    Forfit... Who is to say the 7 Angels were not their best hitters, getting to bat more often. As a coach, I would tell Eriks parents that he is a bully and will sit the bench if it doesnot stop

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    When a coach does not have the required number of players to field a complete team, it is a forfeit (per most little league's official rules). The boys can still play an exhibition game, with one team borrowing some players from the other, but in the official record it goes down as a forfeit, with a W for the team that had the required number of players.

    Where the fuuck is your league, Bushy? Don't they have any official rules that cover this situation? Sounds like a bush league if you ask me.

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    [QUOTE=Bay Ridge Jet;4460897]Angels should forefit. But kids wanna play (and they should) You want to play with 7? Ok. You get 7 positional players to put wherever you want. Those bottom 2 spots in the lineup become automatic outs. 1 out if youre feeling generous[/QUOTE]

    +1.

    The Coaches should not have put the kid in a position of playing for the other team. If the Angels still wanted to compete - let them compete with the players they had.

    Reminds me of hockey game my son played in a few years back. His team had no goalie - I think one was injured and the other was away on a school trip. They didn't ask to "borrow" a goalie from the other team. They played the entire game with six skaters and no goalie. And they won. Every kid on the team still remembers that win.

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    Im assuming the commitment was Holy Communion or Confirmation which took place yesterday everywhere. The league I coached in for 10 years never scheduled games on this day for this very reason. The game in fact was a forfeit once the opposing team declared they didnt have enough players, what took place was an exhibition/scrimmage in my opinion.

    As far as the kid goes as a coach I never liked that situation of loaning another team a player and never did it.
    Last edited by GMCJETS; 05-06-2012 at 11:13 AM.

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    Stillborne was right.

    _

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    [QUOTE=SAR I;4460928]I'm sorry, but what did Erik do wrong exactly?

    SAR I[/QUOTE]

    Lol

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    [QUOTE=JStokes;4461040]Stillborne was right.

    _[/QUOTE]

    yeah, it's to bad he doesn't post here anymore.

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    The dumbass parents who came up with the platooning idea deserve blame.
    That was just brilliant.

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    [QUOTE=GMCJETS;4461031]Im assuming the commitment was Holy Communion or Confirmation which took place yesterday everywhere. [/QUOTE]

    The Jews may haul azz home before the sun goes down and get our games rescheduled for their own benefit, but at least they wouldn't fall for switching players.

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    [QUOTE=Dcat;4460978]When a coach does not have the required number of players to field a complete team, it is a forfeit (per most little league's official rules). The boys can still play an exhibition game, with one team borrowing some players from the other, but in the official record it goes down as a forfeit, with a W for the team that had the required number of players.

    Where the fuuck is your league, Bushy? Don't they have any official rules that cover this situation? Sounds like a bush league if you ask me.[/QUOTE]

    Nothing in their rule book that I could find. It may be somewhere. I did find this online:

    [QUOTE]Confusion arises on this rule regarding teams not having 9 players. First of all you may not start a game or continue a game that is in progress with less than 9 players. Rule 1.01 - Little League is a game between two teams of 9 players each. A league may NOT make a local rule that states that a game can be played with less than 9.

    However, if a team shows up to play, but has less than 9 players, or falls below 9 players during the game, it is NOT an automatic forfeit. A decision must be made by the Board of Directors. The board may declare a forfeit or schedule the game to be played or resumed at a later date.

    NOTE: In Minor league play, the Board may make a rule defining the play of games with less than 9 players.

    During regular season play, umpires have the power under rule 4.15 to forfeit a game. I won't list all the items here, but umpires should avoid declaring a forfeit unless the situation is grossly out of control.[/QUOTE]

    These are small teams--maybe 11 to 13 players a side. And in addition to Holy Communion which I think there was practice this weekend, a lot of these kids play two sports and stuff is always getting rescheduled cuz of that and weather. This game actually was supposed to start an hour earlier and got rescheduled for an hour later. If that change was at our coach's request, maybe the other coach was saying why should I have to forfeit when I accommodated you by starting late---if we'd started on time we'd have finished before my kids had to leave. I don't really assume bad faith on anyone's part. Bad communication, maybe. It takes a lot of horse trading between the coaches to pull these schedules off and each team plays the other four times. So it's in their interest to be accommodating.
    Last edited by BushyTheBeaver; 05-06-2012 at 04:25 PM.

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    [QUOTE=Bonhomme Richard;4460895]That being said, Erik is a huge doosh. Massive. If I were the Astros coach I'd give him all the sucky chores leading up to the next game.[/QUOTE]

    I knew a few like him growing up. Angry, angry kids. And amazingly disruptive. Usually it seemed due to either a lack of a father at home or a father who was himself a bully. Erik has a dad so I make certain assumptions. It's a shame that at just 9 years old this kid already seems like he's on an irreversible course. And over the next 9 years he'll also make life miserable for a lot of his classmates.

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    If the other team did not want to forfeit, they should have played the game with less than 9, and every time an "empty spot" came up in the line-up, it should have counted as an out.

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