SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska



RE: Battle Field
By Neil Gray


June 05, 2006

I had to read Sharyl Whitesides Sitnews' letter over a couple of times, as I was in disbelief that such an action would take place on the Little League field. As a former Umpire In Chief of Ketchikan Little League, I feel some comments from me are appropriate.

First of all, the actions of your Little League President are totally out of line. The Board of Directors should at this time be reviewing the situation and making necessary adjustments. Maybe temporarily suspending him of his Presidential duties and puting the Vice President in charge.

Secondly, if that conduct had taken place on the playing field or in the dugout the head umpire of that game has the right to take control and institute immediate action. Even if the incident took place outside the field and dugout, the head umpire could have taken action and ejected Mr. Rinehardt from the ball park. Since the action happened (apparently) after the game, it is the Board of Directors responsibility to act. Have they?

I personally did not accept inappropriate behavior from players, coaches, or fans. I'm sorry to say, I on more than one occasion ejected coaches and players (and they would good friends of mine!) who showed poor sportsmanship. That INCLUDED league officials. And, I turned to fans at times to "ask" them to behave properly, or leave the park.

In the years I was involved with Ketchikan Little League, it was a league policy that during a game the players would not eat in the dugout. Having a supply of water, etc was okay. They could not leave the dugout to run to the concession stand, go outside the fenced area, etc. They were there to play baseball and pay attention to the game and support their teammates. When players wandered away from the "dugout" they were told to return, or if they didn't want to play, go home. There shouldn't be any question on the parents part what the term "dugout" means. In "those days" it meant inside the fence, on the benches. NOT outside. They were told to eat before or after the game, not during.

The approach taken to inform Tony of the rules about food was wrong too. Why would a "nasty and hostile" notice be needed? When we did it, it was done politely and it worked.

My comments are based only the reports I've read here. It sounds to me like some of those "leaders" (not all I hope) of your present Ketchikan Little League need a course in tact and professionalism and sportsmanship.

Well, I've done it again. Maybe stepping on a few toes. I felt it needed to be said. Remember the saying, "It's not the kids presenting the problems, it's the adults." ???


Neil Gray
Lakeside, CA - USA

About: Involved in Ketchikan Little as parent, coach, umpire for many years


Related Viewpoint:

letter Battle Field By Sharyl Whitesides - Ketchikan, AK - USA



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and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.


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