Parenting Your 6 Year Old To 14 Year Olsd Child Who Invented T-Ball?

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Who Invented T-Ball?

“I won’t be happy until every boy in America between the ages of six and sixteen wears a glove and swings a bat.”

Babe Ruth

On May 6, 2001, the Capitol City League Rockies and the Satchel Paige League Memphis Red Sox from the Washington, DC area took the field to play each other in a t-ball game. What made this t-ball game different from any other game was that it took place on the South Lawn of the White House. President George W. Bush launched this t-ball game on the South Lawn to promote health and fitness for young people and to show appreciation for the game of baseball. This is probably my favorite activity by the US Government. No debate, no debate, no veto, or deadlock. Just proper t-ball basketball where presidents walked around discussing the decisions that would change the world. When I drive past an empty baseball field in my car on a beautiful day, I always think to myself, what a waste. A beautiful, empty field with no one on it. Now we have a tradition every year on the White House lawn. You don’t have to be a Democrat, Republican or Independent to see that this is a bipartisan issue, and a good one at that. How did the game of t-ball come from obscurity to the White House lawn? Well, there aren’t many different stories at the origin of t-ball.

The great owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Branch Rickey, has one theory as the creator of the actual model from which the batting tee is made. Branch Rickey, who was always thinking ahead for his team and the sport of baseball, helped create the minor league system and had a hand in creating the batting helmet. Apparently he incorporated a flexible batting tee derived from car motor radiator hoses. Jackie Robinson, Gil Hodges, and other Dodgers were said to have honed their skills on this man who made the batting tee. It may have been the original model for others who claimed to have created and organized the game of t-ball.

Several people and places around the country have been saying that real t-ball organizing is an activity. The city of Warner Robins, Georgia was one of the first, if not the first, to have an organized t-ball league. Claude Lewis, director of the Warner Robins (Ga.) Recreation Department, founded a t-ball league in March 1958. According to an interview he gave, about 100 parents approached Claude asking for some kind of basketball activity for their children. childhood Claude claims to have established the rules and helped spread the game of t-ball around the world, even flying over to England and Israel to play the game. bring it into other countries, and teach them how to play t-ball. I had the good fortune to speak to Claude’s daughter on the phone, who handles these calls for her elderly father. Marie was nice enough to spend time going through how Claude Lewis got involved in t-ball. Interestingly, Claude’s high school football coach in the mid to late 1940s hit balls off wooden planks on the school’s bleachers. Claude remembered this, and either with his own thoughts, or maybe he heard about what Branch Rickey did with the pipe from a car radiator, he developed tee batting. When he was breaking, he put something inside the pipe. His friend, a welder, helped him to perfect it to his liking, making it easy to carry. Claude Lewis was a man who was always looking for inventions for fun. He was invited to the White House to watch t-ball activities on the South Lawn of the White House and met President George W. Bush.

Another theory of the origin of t-ball credits Dayton Hobbs, who came up with the idea after noticing groups of young kids looking on with envy at his team of 14 and 15 year olds working out . Dr. Hobbs was an elementary school principal in Bagdad, Florida near Pensacola. He had been coaching baseball since the 1950s, so he decided to set up a game for young kids by having them hit the ball off the batting tee. Dr. Hobson not only trademarked Tee Ball but wrote the first Official Tee Ball Baseball Rule Book.

Another theory claims that two Rotarians, Dr. Clyde Muse and WW Littlejohn, added the t-ball game to their town’s summer program in Starkville Mississippi to keep the younger children busy with activities. Because of the highly successful Babe Ruth League involving over 300 children, in 1960 Dr. Muse and Professor Littlejohn were trying hard to create a modified baseball game that young children would enjoy and be successful playing. The story tells that Dr. Muse in Professor Littlejohn’s office and began writing rules for how to play the game of t-ball. They decided that it was not advisable to throw a pitcher to very young children, and that it would be better if the players hit a stationary ball because the children would have more success and give an opportunity for development faster. They then forwarded the rules to the Starkville Youth Football Association and supported the game and the rules and in the summer of 1961 t-ball started in Starkville Mississippi.

Finally in Albion, Michigan, t-ball was said to have been invented by Coach Jerry Sacharski. He was a football coach who came up with the game in the summer of 1956. I called and talked to one of his children, Mike Sacharski, who gave me some good facts about his father. Mike told me that his father created this program because the brothers of the kids on teams wanted something to do at a young age. He prepared the game for youth between six and eight years of age to play. At first it was called Pee Wee Baseball. Coach Jerry Sacharski wanted to teach kids the basics of regular baseball and he couldn’t stand to turn the very young kids away from playing baseball because of their age. Mike told me that his father initially wanted only children to learn the basics of fielding, throwing and base running. Hitting them was only an afterthought. Coach Jerry Sacharski considered having the umpire throw the balls out into the infield as if they had been hit. It quickly progressed to making the kids hit the ball off a batting tee that was obtained from a nearby town in Michigan. Jerry would go down to the hardware store and try to perfect the batting tee, so it was easier to carry. Frank Passic, who is an Albion historian and played t-ball in 1960 tells how they played a game at Michigan State University that was televised. Mike Sacharski also explained how his family never got into any kind of battle over the origins of t-ball and he considers his father a “Pioneer” of the game.

I guess we will never know the true creator of organized t-ball. It was probably played in Canada in the late 1950s and early 1960s before gaining more popularity here in the United States. One thing is certain. The “Tee Ball” trademark was registered with the United States government by Dayton Hobbs in the early 1970s.

It’s amazing how far the batting tee has come, if it started with Branch Rickey’s original rubber motor tube batting tee invention. If you ever go to a major league baseball clinic, in their showroom you’re going to see new batting strings being tossed around like the latest mousetrap that can turn a 250 hitter’s average into a 400 average. If you search the internet and in baseball catalogs, you will see an endless number of different types of batting tees. The ones that look like the most popular, are black and have one adjustable rubber pole. Then there are batting tees that have movable places for the rubber pole. There are also some that now have an “arm” that stands up to help you adjust your swing the right way. Then there are tees that have an automatic feeder. So instead of hitting the baseball off the tee and replacing it with another ball, the machine will do it for you. Instead of spending $25 or $35 for a basic batting tee, you now have the option of spending up to $300 for the feeder batting tee.

It does not matter who created an organized t-ball. Tee Ball continues to be one of the most popular organized leagues in the world with thousands of boys and girls participating each year!

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