This year’s CYC Baseball and Softball Playoffs proved that good sportsmanship is most definitely alive and well here in the Archdiocese of St. Louis. There were numerous Random Acts of Sportsmanship (RAS) reported during the playoffs, and a myriad more that went unnoticed. RAS are acts that we want to encourage all our participants to display every time they take the field or court. In addition to recognizing winners of games, we feel it is imperative for the CYC to search for and recognize Acts of Sportsmanship at our athletic events. As a Catholic organization we must train our children to display Christian values in all parts of their lives, especially during athletic competition. Below are just a few RAS that we witnessed during the playoffs:
St. Mark's 5th grade baseball team had a spirited player on the bench who encouraged his teammates, congratulated them when they made nice plays and consoled them if they struck out. His name is Ben Sanders. What was even more impressive about his sportsmanship and team spirit is he did this while not being able to play, because his arm was in a cast! But he was right there on the bench, as MVT, Most Valuable Teammate.
We also awarded Tim Klump, a St. Mark's parent and fan a Random Act of Sportsmanship. Why? Well in the 98 degree heat and high humidity, he was kind enough to see if the umpires needed some water. He offered to quench their thirst and then made the uphill trek to the concession stand for them. Tim, what a great example you are to all of us to look outside ourselves and see if we can help others.
Delvon Yates was throwing hard and throwing strikes for St. Ferdinand in their 5th grade championship game. After he finished his four dominate innings his coach and dad, Charles Yates, congratulated him and told him what great pitching that was. But Charles not only praised his own son and own players, you could often hear him from his 3rd base coaching box telling the opponents, St. Cletus players, what a nice play they had made. Once when the ball slithered past the St. Cletus 3rd basemen, he winced and said, "that was a tough one to catch". Then turned to some fans on the 3rd base side and said, "Even though that helps our team, I hate to see a player miss a chance to make a play." Love that Sportsmanship Charles!
In making the rounds to the different fields, we often heard from the district people manning the scoring tables how professional and how consistent the umpires were. Two umpires that were recognized for their great work on the first Saturday at St. Gerard were Chris and Tim Althage. They did a great job of handling the pre-game instructions and ground rules. They were always hustling and in position to make calls. Plus they took time to explain calls to the players when they were confused. They were instructing the players on the rules of baseball. Great job, great sportsmanship!
We are sure there were many more RAS that took place during the baseball and softball playoffs. Often times those acts go unnoticed, or if noticed, unmentioned. Those should not be unmentionables! They should be spotted and shouted about. As a CYC we want to recognize these acts. Praise the people involved and encourage others to follow in their footsteps. So when you see a Random Act of Sportsmanship make a mental note and then drop an email about it to firstname.lastname@example.org so we can shout about it and bring it to everyone's attention. As the CYC, we want to help everyone realize that good sportsmanship makes great sports!!