Congrats on making it to the College World Series! As you know, this is the opportunity of a lifetime, and I’m sure you were so excited to be playing on the big stage with this incredible team. But, I’m also sure that at this point, some of that excitement has waned, overshadowed by disappointment in yourself. You know and I know that you haven’t played to your potential. You’ve been solid at short stop all season and earned your position for the College World Series, but once you got to Omaha, things came apart. I don’t know what happened. Maybe you were too in your head? I know it killed you to be pulled from that second game against Florida and that you carried the weight of that loss on your shoulders (which, by the way, it takes a whole team to win and a whole team to lose. A lot of things went wrong to lose that game 24-4). But keep the faith.
It might not feel like it now, but this is going to be okay. Today is a new day. You are still a kid playing a game for the love of the game. Don’t lose sight of that. One inning can change everything. I know you know this. I’m sorry it happened like this. I know no one is more upset than you, but it’s time to move on. And, by the way, if you’re worried about the fans, we’ll be fine. We are LSU fans. Hell, many of us are also Saints fans. We are familiar with tough losses, and we cope just fine. We need you out there.
I know your parents wish they could scoop you up, pat your hair, and tell you to shake it off and pick your head up. That’s what I tell my 10-year-old son when he lets a ball get by, or when he goes down looking, or when he overthrows first base. I know it’s not the same, but I’m certain your parents still look at you and see their little boy. I know you’ve come a long way from being that little boy to playing for a nationally ranked college team, but that doesn’t mean you’ll play flawlessly.
Anyway, I know no one is harder on you than yourself, and I’m sure this letter means very little, but just know, at the end of the day, you’ll be alright. Believe it or not, there are plenty of us out here rooting for you. So, think back to when you were a little ball player and you made mistakes. What did your parents tell you? If they are anything like me, they probably said something like this: Hey bud, you’re okay. Gotta shake that off and hustle out there. Just go do your job with your head up.
Remember your training. You can do this. I’ll be cheering you on from my living room. Now shake it off and hustle!
And hey, don’t forget to have fun out there.
Love (and Geaux Tigers!),
A Baseball Momma