BCC Baseball is excited to announce our NEW 8u and 9u Next Level Development Programs.
As a bridge to our highly competitive Big Train travel baseball program beginning at 10u or the BCC Select program for 9/10-year old’s, we are very pleased to introduce a more moderate transition level for 8u and 9u eligible athletes. The program is designed for young ball players who really enjoy playing baseball, want professional coaching and are looking to take a step up from rec baseball - without necessarily going all-in solely on baseball at such an early age. It provides a test drive of sorts for players/parents to evaluate and decide what their best next move may be.
“Coach Al” Bidwick will oversee and coach the 8u and 9u teams. With over 30 years of experience coaching youth baseball from t-ball to high school, he is fully committed to developing his players both in the fundamentals of the game and as individuals – the building blocks to success on the baseball field and in life.
Here are Coach Al’s fundamental coaching principles that will provide the foundation of the program:
·Academics are priority # 1 – whatever it takes to succeed in the classroom always trumps scheduled baseball activities.
·At 8u and 9u, kids should enjoy playing the game. Baseball is hard enough on its own, with plenty of failure inherently built into it without having to deal with outside pressure and expectations from coaches and parents.
·Winning baseball games always takes a back seat to player development. Winning is merely a by-product of good coaching and player development – and that goes for every player on the team.
·Defense – throwing and catching the baseball are the keys to success for a youth player. The team that can collectively play catch the best typically wins. But all kids do love to hit!
·If we pick ‘em, we play ’em. Every player on the team bats, plays the field and pitches. While better players may play more frequently in the field, no player sits on the bench two innings in a row. Nobody gets better sitting on the bench.
·Kids develop and mature at different rates, physically and athletically. Young kids are highly encouraged to play multiple sports (especially in the off-season) – you just never know how things are going to turn out for a young child – keep the options open as long as you can. Increased athleticism, improved motor skills, balance, endurance, speed and agility are just a few examples of the benefits of multi-sport participation. Who knows what sport a player may ultimately fall in love with?
·In order to truly improve as baseball players, kids need to play with and against better competition whenever possible.
For 8u and 9u, tryouts will be conducted at the end of each season for the succeeding season – in the summer for the fall season and in late fall for the spring/summer season. You do not have to make a full-year commitment. If you try it for a season and it’s not for you, easy out.
For the spring/summer 2023 season (March thru mid-July):
Tryout date: Saturday, October 22nd
Location: Lynnbrook Local Park
Times: 8u – 1:00-3:00pm
Register by clicking the above age group or visit BCCBaseball.com and click Player Registration and choose Tryouts.
If you have a conflict on the date and time, contact Coach Al and he will arrange for an alternative workout for you.
Tryouts are basically like attending a free clinic – players are evaluated in the 5-Tools of the game: throwing, fielding, speed, hitting for contact and hitting for power. Parents are welcome to observe the tryouts. At the end of the day players (and parents) get a read on where they stand in relation to other players at the same age level. The 12 best players/athletes will make the teams.
Life lesson – if a player has confidence in his/her abilities, try out. It takes courage for a child to try out and it is often more stressful for a parent than the player. A player will learn from the experience one way or the other. Everyone worries about trying out and not making the team. As almost everyone knows, Michael Jordan famously got cut from his varsity basketball team – he didn’t give up and look what happened!
Player evaluations and selections for the 8u and 9u teams are conducted by independent coaches. Selected players receive professional instruction in all phases of the game. On average, players will both practice and play games on 2 days a week in the spring/summer season. Over the winter months (January and February) players will practice for 2 hours every Saturday at the BCC Baseball Indoor Training Facility – flex scheduling is provided around winter sport commitments (e.g. basketball, wrestling, swimming, etc.).
Many parents get scared off by the term “travel” as relates to travel baseball, especially when they have other young children, careers and obligations to be concerned about. “Travel” is an extremely unfortunate misnomer. Travel is very limited at the 8u and 9u levels.
All practices and games are local. In the spring/summer season, at 8u there will be at most 1 tournament requiring travel outside of the immediate area (if that) and at 9u travel will be limited to 2-3 weekend tournaments out of town that will require an overnight stay. With that said, win or lose, the out-of-town tournaments will undoubtedly be the most enjoyable and memorable experiences of the season for the players, parents and siblings alike…trust me!
If anyone has any questions about the 8u-9u development program – contact Coach Al at firstname.lastname@example.org or 301-325-0955.