When a coach takes over a team, he/she will often get a scouting report on their players. In baseball, the report usually includes things like hitting ability, running speed and defensive effort.
However, when Ervin Sorrell was named the head coach of the Glasgow 12-Under All-Stars he added another category to the scouting report. He wants to know just how competitive his players are.
“We’ve got some older players on this year’s team, some kids that played middle school baseball. But it is hard to replace some of the kids from last year,” Sorrell said. “We have some kids coming back from the 10U team that went to state last year. We have tournament experience, but not necessarily 12-Under experience. Nikolas Sorrell and Connor Taylor do. However, everyone else is new to the team or played on the 10-Under team.
“These kids have some solid fundamentals. They’re good kids, they listen and they’re very good baseball players. And they’re all very competitive kids, and that makes a difference.”
Sorrell will get to see just how competitive his players really are this weekend when Glasgow opens play in the 12-Under Little League District Tournament in Springfield. The Scotties will face Adair County at 1 p.m. CT Saturday at the Washington County Little League Park. A victory would put Glasgow in the second round Sunday against the winner of the Campbellsville-Marion County game.
“We’ve got Russell County, Adair County, South Hardin, Washington County, Campbellsville and Marion County in the field. I don’t know a lot about this field,” Sorrell explained. “Campbellsville usually has a fundamentally sound team and Russell County, which had some younger kids on last year’s team, I would expect to be tough. I believe it is a pretty even field this year and we’re going to go out and play Glasgow’s game and compete as best as we can.”
Sorrell said Glasgow will have to be very focused on offense this year.
“I think the kids realize we’re not going to knock the ball out of the park every time (at the plate) and every once in a while we will have to manufacture some runs, play some small ball. We try to play and win each inning. If the other team scores two runs, then we have to go out and score three runs. That’s the goal we set for ourselves, win one inning at a time.
“(In this tournament) we could score a lot of runs, but it could also be a 2-1 game. It all depends on what type of pitching we face and how our kids are hitting, whether we play a long ball game or small ball where we have to manufacture runs.”
And keeping the errors to a minimum could be the key for Glasgow on defense.
“I think we can play some very good defense. We could make an error here or there, but the key is we can’t compound that error,” Sorrell said. “I think we will field the ball well. If we can limit how many runs the other team scores, we should be OK. We don’t want to get behind early.”
Sorrell said he believes the keys for his team’s chances for a district title will boil down to pitching and defense. He said he’s confident in his pitching staff to get the ball over the plate and in his defense to back his pitchers up.
“The kids seem to be really focused and we’re taking it one day at a time. The key for us is pitching and defense,” Sorrell explained. “If we can throw the ball well and play good defense, make the easy out, then we’ve got a shot. If we can extend how far our pitchers go in each game, then we’re going to be at a definite advantage.”