Month: February 2017

WELL ROUNDED or WELL TRAVELED, be thankful for Legion Baseball

20150708_220728-1Baseball, it’s the ultimate team sport combining individual and team skills. A well-rounded baseball player that possesses high baseball IQ will compete with every pitch to help his team succeed. Unfortunately, today’s youth game seems to be changing at a rapid pace. Individual play is taking over and team baseball seems to be taking punches like a Rocky Balboa side of beef.

Hold onto your hats, the culprit may in fact be Club Baseball. You’ve seen it before, club coaches absorb and pluck players from leagues with the lure of travel, exposure, and the promise of college scholarships at a very early age. Parents love to hear that someone can make their son the next Bryce Harper or Randy Johnson. What the club doesn’t mention is that the team aspect of baseball isn’t being taught as it once was. Most of these club coaches know the game very well. However big money is now at stake and teaching team skills takes a back seat to bringing in money so the club has enough cash for operating expenses. This approach only helps the club make money and in no way helps one to become a well-rounded baseball player. Flawed at its core, parents flock to club teams in droves.

For my player, I decided against club baseball. I kept my son with a great youth coach and played Legion baseball during summers during his high school years. I knew that teaching all aspects of the game would be beneficial to him as a baseball player. I didn’t want his development to be limited to only hitting or pitching. But don’t take my word for it. Check out any high level showcase tournament featuring a majority of club teams. The team aspect of the game is slowly being washed away and replaced with games only emphasizing individual hitting and pitching skills. See if you can find a club coached team executing a sacrifice bunt, a defensive play to prevent a bunt, hit & run, or good base running techniques. It’s very difficult to find these skills being taught and used within the club baseball community. In fact get ready for the opposing coach to take offense and start acting a fool, should you try to execute one of these horrific outdated skills. Because after all, who bunts with a runner on first base with no outs in the bottom of the last inning?

Legion baseball is still a great option for those who want to play baseball and continue to learn the game. Actually it’s time we spread the word. You can be proud you and your player participate in Legion baseball. Don’t get caught up in all the club hype; it’s overrated to say the least. Legion baseball is much more cost effective than club baseball. There is a sense of community pride. There are coaches that teach the game of baseball not because they get paid to coach, but because they love the game. You actually have a “home” field….and you might even help your son to become a baseball player that helps his TEAM win.

Written by Eric Mertes

Parent of Nic Mertes Rockhurst University & Fike player from 2012-2016


A Quiet Kind of Courage

Make a difference today
Love Clint Hurdle
For today’s Insights and Inspirations …

A Quiet Kind of Courage
by Veronica Hay

Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, “I will try again tomorrow” ~ Mary-Anne Rademacher

So true, more often than not I believe this is the case.
There are many words for courage. I looked it up in the dictionary and came up with the following: bravery, fearlessness, nerve, audacity, boldness, grit, gallantry, guts, spunk, moxie, balls, valor, determination.

And then I began to think of how many situations life presents us with every day where we have the opportunity to respond with everything we’ve got, in a courageous way.

For example.
Choosing to do things our way when the world is telling us to do something different, takes guts.

Telling the truth in spite of the consequences, takes nerve.

Never giving up on your dream, even when things appear to be hopeless, takes determination.

Doing the right thing, taking the high road, when it doesn’t always feel comfortable, takes valor.

Believing in yourself when no one else does, takes balls.

Sharing yourself with the world in an honest, authentic and even vulnerable way, takes spunk.

Walking out on a limb, doing something you’re really afraid to do, with your knees knocking and your hands sweating, takes fearlessness.

Being proud of who you are in spite of the fact that others think you’re different or weird or even crazy, takes audacity.

Offering your gifts to the world, and doing it with everything you’ve got, in every way you know how, takes boldness.

Giving the other person the benefit of the doubt when you know you are right, takes gallantry.

Believing you are gorgeous, brilliant, talented, amazing and acting accordingly, takes moxie.

Choosing to keep your commitment to yourself and do the work you promised you would do every day, takes grit.

Opening your heart again even though you may have been betrayed, let down, even abandoned, takes bravery.

So my dear friends, where in your life today will you be bold, audacious, spunky, balsy, fearless, brave, daring, gallant or determined and what are you waiting for?
Have a courageous day.
Love and blessings, Veronica Hay

May there be a MIRACLE in your life today…
And may you have the EYES to see it…

No Fear of Failure

No Fear of Failure
by Chuck Swindoll

When will we ever learn that there are no hopeless situations, only people who have grown hopeless about them?

What appears as an unsolvable problem to us is actually a rather exhilarating challenge. People who inspire others are those who see invisible bridges at the end of dead-end streets.

There was a Cabinet meeting in London during the darkest days of the Second World War. France had just capitulated. Prime Minister Churchill outlined the situation in its starkest colors. Quite literally, the tiny British Isles stood alone.

Grim faces stared back at him in stoic silence. Despair and thoughts of surrender were written in their looks. The visionary statesman momentarily remained silent, lit a cigar, showed a hint of a smile, and with a twinkle in his eye, responded to that dispirited company of officials, “Gentlemen, I find it rather inspiring.” . . .

What a great line! No wonder people followed the man. Fear of failure never entered his mind!

Make a difference today

Love Clint Hurdle

The Mental Edge

The Mental Edge
Sports Psychology Session with Dr. Andrew Jacobs
Saturday, March 25 1:00-3:00pm

Gautreaux’s Martial Arts is hosting a “Mental Edge” training session with Dr. Andrew Jacobs. Besides his extensive list of accomplishments within the field of sports psychology for the past 36 years, Dr. Jacobs was Mrs. Gautreaux’s sports psychologist leading up to and throughout her training and competition at the 1992 Summer Olympic Games. She personally understands and believes in the value of mental training for all competitive athletes.

The seminar Dr. Jacobs is conducting will specifically address the mental training issues important for young athletes, specifically middle and high school athletes. His seminar will help you navigate the stressful world of youth and high school sports to make you the best athlete possible. Sports can be a great catalyst for success in life but it can also destroy an athlete who does not have the tools to deal with the stress of competition.

Dr. Jacobs has a website, mental training CD’s, a recently published book titled “Just Let’em Play”, as well as a weekly radio talk show on 810 WHB called “The Dr. Andrew Jacobs Sports Psychology Hour”. His website is Take a look at his extensive resume with Professional and Olympic athletes.

The seminar will be held at Gautreaux’s Martial Arts Center, 2905 SW US Hwy 40 in Blue Springs, MO. The time is 1:00-3:00pm. Seminar fee is $50.00, paid directly to Dr. Jacobs. Dr. Jacobs seminars are CLOSED sessions, meaning once the seminar has started, only the participants will be allowed to stay. One coach from a participating team will be allowed to observe. This is a PRE-REGISTRATION EVENT ONLY. Registration deadline is Wednesday, March 15. Participants will need to bring a pen and paper with them. Please contact Coach Robert Smith if you plan to attend. Also, please download and print page 2 of this document to bring with you: Waiver for Gautreaux’s

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me for more information. I can be reached at or by phone/text at 816-694-4619.

“You can have two athletes of equal skill and physical ability, but
the one with the stronger mind will be the one who comes out on
top.” – Dr. Andrew Jacobs


My 2 Cents

Thanks to John Keiser for sharing.

Good Morning Everyone,

“It ain’t over ‘till it’s over.” – Yogi Berra,

As most of you know, I am a sports fan. And, I also believe that there are amazing comparisons between sports and business. I have had a week to think about the recent Super Bowl and reflect on what actually happened. If you were not one of the 100,000,000 people that watched the Super Bowl or the commercials, the New England Patriots came from behind to beat the Atlanta Falcons in the first Overtime game in 51 Super Bowls. But how does this Super Bowl compare to business? Here are a few ways that I saw

· Yogi was right. Yogi Berra is a Hall of Fame baseball player, coach and manager. He also was a D-Day Normandy Beach Survivor. And he was a unique philosopher. It’s not over until it’s officially over is what his quote meant. . No matter what the score is. In the Super Bowl, at one time Atlanta was leading by 25 points. No team in the previous 50 Super Bowls had overcome that big of a lead to win the game. ESPN stats at one point in the game, gave New England less than 1% chance of winning! But as Jim Carey so accurately stated in his classic movie Dumb and Dumber….”so you’re saying there’s a chance!”. The Patriots believed there was a chance to win because there was still time on the clock and they were not done. That belief is needed in football, life and business. We owe it to ourselves, our teams to give it everything we have until it really is over.

· Attitude: there have been many stories about the Super Bowl in the last week. One that amazed me was that of Julian Edelman. While he made an amazing catch in the second half, perhaps his greatest impact was during halftime. It is reported that he was telling team mates “what a story we are going to make” and how “this will be something that our kids will talk about when we come back and win”. Remember, at this time the score was 21-3 and the game may have been even farther apart than the score indicated. But the attitude of Julian Edelman and the belief of others was very simple: They were still capable of winning. Couple that belief with the fact that the game was not over yet, and you have the makings of a comeback. Now, they definitely have a story to tell……

· Adaptability: The Atlanta Falcons were the more aggressive team. They had been all year. That is how they played the game for the previous 18 games. And, that is what got them to a 25 point lead in the Super Bowl!. Many would say, that that same aggressiveness is also what lost the game for them. There were times when the circumstances of the game – and winning the game- no longer warranted that same style. It is good to be committed to a style, a model, a way of doing things. But it is also good to remember that these are just methods of achieving higher goals and are not the ends in themselves. Champions know how to adjust, without compromising who they are.

· It’s one game: While it may be the biggest game of the year, and this may have been the most memorable Super Bowl ever, it’s one game. We live in a time when these games can define people, teams and even cities. But what amazed me was the head coach of the Patriots saying in a post-game interview that he “was 5 weeks behind in his preparation for next year”. He just won the biggest game of the year, but he was already focusing on next year. Why? Because this was one game and not the only game. There will be more games to play. More games to prepare for. And, more games to win. In football, life and business, we should enjoy our successes, but not live in them. Repeat champions don’t. They succeed. Enjoy. And prepare to succeed again.

Sports and business have similarities. Both are competitive. And what helps teams win in sports is exactly the same thing that helps players and teams win in business. The Patriots are an example of that.

Today, act like a New England Patriot.
Make a difference today
Love Clint Hurdle


It’s a RARE PERSON who doesn’t get discouraged in the face of adversity. Whether it happens to us or to a friend we’re trying to cheer up, the answer to overcoming adversity lies in one word: PERSEVERANCE.

The value of courage, persistence, and perseverance has rarely been illustrated more convincingly than in the life story of this man. His age appears in the column on the right.

That’s the record of Abraham Lincoln, and today is his birthday.

You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try. Failure is not in losing the game, but in not getting off the mat when you are knocked down.

How do you respond to adversity?

Do you get:

-Encouraged or Discouraged?

-Frustrated or Fascinated?

-Turned Off or Turned On?

Today and every day, use adversity to make yourself stronger. Every setback is a setup for a comeback.
Make a difference today!

From Brian Cain

Thanks to Clint Hurdle for sharing!

If you want something different…

“You don’t just wake up one morning with a new house, a new relationship, a new job or a new life. The ONLY way to create something you want, is to do the work, and the work takes focus and persistence. It is never about wishing or hoping, but only about doing. And you have to have that ahh haa moment where you realize YOU, and only you, are responsible for the life you have. If you want something different, get cracking and create it.” ~Chandra Alexander

Thanks to Clint Hurdle for sharing!