You see, the Jones family means well.
Little Jones loves baseball.
And while he's not the best on his team, he has his moments when he puts it all together when he's really great.
He says that he wants to play in the big leagues someday, and while that's too far off to think about, his parents want to give him every opportunity to reach his goals, whatever that might be.
The problem is that his smooth, quick, carefree swing that he shows at home and at practice hasn't been there on gamedays.
Look at his last at bat:
First pitch, the pitcher comes right at him with a fastball down the middle, and everything about him is slower.
His swing just drifts through the zone, no resemblance to the confident swing Mr Jones has seen him take a thousand times.
"Swing the bat! Be aggressive!" Dad shouts suggests.
Now down 0-1, he already looks tight in the box.
"Why is he standing like that?" Dad wonders.
Pitch comes and he tries to swing harder, but the result is more of a herky jerky swing with no rhythm...timing is all off.
The next two pitches are both balls, he has a pretty good eye most of the time.
Then the 2-2 pitch comes, he takes his hack and again...it looks slower.
He makes contact but it's not that solid. Ground ball to second base and they get him out. No hit for little Jones.
And this happens time and time again.
Dad thinks "If only he would use his GOOD swing, things would be so much better."
And on the car ride home, Dad really gets on a roll.
He doesn't yell...but he's not exactly calm either.
"What were you doing on that first at bat?"
"Just be aggressive"
"You know that thing you were doing with your hands in practice this week that worked so well? You didn't do that at all today."
And so is everyone else in the car.
Now, back to the real world...
...and I'll be honest with you, me and my son have been just like the Jones family.
But I finally decided that I didn't want this to be our experience.
I wanted my kid to give HIMSELF a chance to succeed, and see what he can do.
And I certainly don't want our baseball experience (which should be peak Father/Son bonding right?) to be be filled with such tension.
So I looked into options.
I read books.
I called on the best minds I could get a hold of.
And I found fantastic news.
There are ACTUALLY steps and strategies that players can use to combat their nerves and play their best baseball.
There is a way to become the Lovejoy's....