Observations - bad news, good news, bad news, good news

posted May 21, 2013, 10:53 AM by Dante Sabatucci   [ updated May 21, 2013, 10:53 AM ]

I feel compelled to send an early season report for my observations about the season so far.  I timed it and it will take you 4 minutes to read this entire e-mail filled with important information. 

Observations - I don't want to get into an evaluation of each team or individual players.  I want to make this observations though.  It's hard to know how much progress first year players have made but the players who are in their second and third year in the Buzzsaws program have made significant improvement.  As an example, the 14u Varsity team is made up of four players who are in their third year with the Buzzsaws and five players in their second year.  Three of those five players had worked with me and coach Jimmy even before the Buzzsaws were formed.  There are only two new players on the team.  In our first year, we were under .500 and NEVER won a tournament game.  Last year, almost the same group of players had a record of about .500 and made it to the quarter finals of a couple of tournaments.  They started last season slow (probably 1-7) and finished strong.  Right now, the 14u Varsity team is 6-2 and we were the runner up in a very competitive tournament two weeks ago.  Here is my point - this team has been developed, not recruited.  The players have all worked hard on their own and they all have a passion for the game.  I am watching players blossom right in front of my eyes.  It would be easy to recruit players who are already good but the whole point of this program is to develop the players who want to be trained.

We are continuing to evaluate our own program from within and make adjustments that make sense.  You will continue to see adjustments as we try to refine the program to be the best it can be.  We know what to teach and how to teach it.  We are struggling with the logistics of continuing to train within the season.  There are so many moving parts that it becomes very difficult to schedule.  But we are constantly communicating and working on ways of putting the pieces together.   One of the moving pieces is access to fields (see below).  If I can solve the field issue, it will allow the coaches to call more practices and for me to schedule more workouts with Coach Jimmy.  In the meantime, you should see coach Jimmy attending some games in the near future to provide feedback to me, to develop a practice plan and even provide observations to the coaches.

Reminder - the academy has plenty of availability.  If your son has not been using this free resource, I would encourage you to make sure he knows it's there for him to get better.  The boys know how to work out on their own.  We've taught them plenty of drills and methods for working on their game.....they just have to do it.  Remember, they are allowed to bring a friend anytime they work out at the facility to throw BP, catch with or whatever.  Please use the facility, that's why it's there.

Fields - I am about to pull my hair out regarding the fields.  After all the work to get Lakeview ready, the Stow bureaucracy steps in and takes over.  Not only did they inform me that 13 and 14u players are not allowed to practice there (because of neighbor concerns of damage to their house) but now we have to go through a three person committee to schedule the field.  I will do my best to get some practice dates there but I can't say I am surprised at how it has turned out.  However, I have identified another private athletic complex that I am pursuing right now.  I will have to pay for the use of these fields but I have reached the conclusion that this is the only way to have access to enough fields to practice as often as I and the coaches would like to.   I should have something concrete in place by the end of this week.

New Facility - As I have shared with many of you, the State Rd. facility that I had agreed to purchase has been officially nixed.  There were some environmental concerns that I had and the owner and I could not come to an agreement about how to mitigate the legitimate concerns.  In the meantime, I had put an offer on another property on Seasons Rd. which had some potential.  But, the owners accepted a higher offer than mine and I declined to pursue it any further because I think I have identified a better situation (which is related to the athletic complex).  I will share more information about this complex as soon as I feel comfortable that it is a real possibility (at this point, I think it's better than 50/50).  If everything pans out, this athletic complex and the potential building that we will build would match my wildest dreams about the vision I have for facilities and for the future of the Buzzsaws.  Stay tuned. 

Account Balances - Please check your account balance and let me know if there are any discrepancies.  This is the time of year when cash flow planning is critical and I need to know that all balances are accurate and will be paid in the near future.  To check your balance, click here - http://clients.mindbodyonline.com/ws.asp?studioid=30852&stype=-2, login and click on the "account" link.  To pay your balance, go to "Payments and packages/Account Payments".  Please let me know if there are any discrepancies or errors. 

Uniform Maintenance - Some of you may have noticed some fraying of lettering for some uniforms from last year.  I found out that in order to preserve the jerseys, do not wash them with fabric softener and it's probably better not to dry them in the dryer. 

Dominican Trip - For those of you who are interested in the baseball mission trip to the Dominican Republic later this year, I will be sending a separate e-mail within the week with some of the details.  The boys who went last have said that it was an unbelievable experience as it was for me.  Ty and I are excited to take another team down there to play baseball in one of the great baseball hotspots of the world against players who they would never have the opportunity to play against otherwise. 

QuEST - I will be sending a separate e-mail about QuEST.  I beleive the boys should be continuing in QuEST even during the season.  QuEST is a necessary part of the development process and if the boys aren't enrolled, they are missing out and falling behind.  Keith and I will be making some minor changes to keep the program going strong and to encourage more players to be in it.  Look for an e-mail tomorrow about QuEST.