Summer

Let me be the first to say, I never made it to the Major Leagues.

As a matter of fact it took me 4 years and all my money to make it to High A-Ball.

I had an absolute blast playing professional baseball.

Some people think I screwed up by signing with the Philadelphia Phillies out of High School.

I am from a small, rural community where growing up in sports was a way of life.  Being really good at sports was your ticket out.

The only 4 year college I ever wanted to go to was the University of Missouri (Go Mizzou)! and they offered me a Full Ride to play Baseball in Columbia.

Then came Draft Day.

With 374th Overall Pick in The June 1986 Draft.

Darrell Coulter

Right Handed Pitcher.

From Bonne Terre, Mo

Ht. 5’11”  Wt. 151

I was the 7th pick in the 15th round.

Yep, that’s right 151 pounds!

It was an unique experience and the lessons I learned from that experience I still use today.  But it did leave a few Mental Scars that I need to let go of.

But the point of this post is to prove that size isn’t everything.

Yes it is true that some of my teammates nicknamed me “The Bat Boy”.

The truth, I did look like the bat boy compared to most of my teammates.

Fortunately for me baseball isn’t played on paper, it’s played on the field.

Where talent, mental toughness and preparation can be the great equalizer.

Baseball is played Between the Lines and Between the Ears.

I don’t care what anyone says, Scouts can’t measure your Heart.

I had an average Fastball 85-90 mph.

I had above average Curve ball that I could throw for strikes.

I had above average Slider I could throw for strikes.

When I threw my fastball consistently for strikes I was highly effective. And when I didn’t I wasn’t.

If I was to make a total confession,

My Heart was my greatest asset and My Mind was probably my biggest weakness on draft day.

I had the heart. I wanted to compete.  Failure was not an option.

But High School Baseball was easy.  There wasn’t a ton of competition on a regular basis.  So you can get away with being a little wild on occassion.  You can get away with not having your best fastball or missing location on your pitches.

In Professional Baseball at any level you will get hurt and smacked around pitching with that kind of stuff.

The truth is Mental Toughness and Physical Talent always outweighs SIZE.

So let me lay out the REAL Truth about Professional Baseball.

You have to be a great baseball pitcher at some level to ever sign a Professional Baseball Contract.

It don’t matter if you are 5’6″ 120 pounds or 6’6″ 240 pounds.

Everything You do your whole Baseball life is just to get a CHANCE.

Learn to be a great High School or College Pitcher first.

I loved every minute of playing Pro Baseball.

I never made it to the Big Leagues… But I had my CHANCE.

When YOUR Pro Baseball Opportunity comes, will YOU be ready?

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4 Comments

  • Don Ervin November 6, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    Hey Darrel:
    I also played in the Phillie’s org. many moons ago, we both proved that being a big person is not the most important thing, I was five foot ten-145 lbs soaking wet. we are quite different though, in the attitude section. , You let your career work out the way it was going to work out, Me , I had a great banner season and then just walked away never knowing how far I could have gone. since then I have studied, researched and have learned more about many aspects of baseball than most people, coaches etc. what has intrigued me the most is learning from “Sports Science research” and of course along with Brent’s much researched Top Velocity info. about how the body in motion should work in difference as to how it naturally works, there is a distinct difference there. The main difference to me pertains to pitching due to the fact of the enormous unnecessary number of chronic sore arms and surgeries acquired by aspiring pitchers in every level of baseball professional and amateur, even down into our youth players as young as 10 yrs. old. Baseball people up here in Springfield, Mo. for the most part are still in their old conventional, opinionated mode, they have no idea that teaching by opinion is of course becoming a thing of the past they are still futilely attempting to coach like as they say what I learned here and there during high school, at Evangel, SBU, etc. is the way I coach. while coaching in our high school fall ball league one of the players, a junior at Kickaoos dad became irate with me when I described how the hips first move ahead of the stride foot and leg without stopping and standing at the top of the leg lift, and that the pitchers body in motion works in sequenced, chain reactive movements and those movements must be executed at the proper time, in their proper sequence, or all of that tremendous energy, strain, tension and abuse built up during the throwing movement, is absorbed and dissipates into the arm instead of the large muscles of the lower body therefore the arm is left to do the work instead of the body, The director of our college summer and high school fall league has no idea of what I mentioned and will not even listen to me about the issue, oh ,well if all goes as expected soon I will have a place indoors and whomever comes for lessons will be taught what Brent, his program and what ” Sports Science Research” people etc. bring to the table.
    Hey, best of luck to you with the things you are involved in.
    Don Ervin
    kom_ervin@yahoo.com

    • Darrell Coulter November 6, 2011 at 8:59 pm

      Don,
      I know what you are talking about. It will take some time but I think if we keep teaching what personal experience and science has and is teaching us then we can make a difference. The problem with some coaches is that they won’t admit when they don’t know what they are talking about. I don’t get it, with all the arm injuries today, that parents aren’t looking at what is the functional problem with their son’s pitching mechanics. Video can explain a lot of what you are talking about, it’s as simple as that.
      Let me know if I can help out in anyway. Keep up the good work

  • Matt Hooper May 18, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    10 Years now Coaching Little League & Babe Ruth. The kids that start Puberty first completely dominate starting line ups. 12-13 yrs old and 6 feet tall ? Coaches will swoon over you no matter what your actual talent level is. Quite frankly- nearing 6 feet tall at that age- you dont have any competition. This is not good. I have watched countless talented players drop out because they thought they were simply too small to compete. The larger kids go on to High School and finally play equal sized talent- and you see how poor they really are. Parents- PLEASE HEED my warning- you can not measure heart. If only those smaller very talented kids hung in there ! Youth Sports are a mess. Frankly- I am bewildered how we actually have enough superstars to fill the Pro Baseball Ranks….I have watched dozens of super talented kids leave baseball and go to Soccer simply over size issues. The Parents with the larger boys are a whole other story. They lawn mow a path for their larger boys thinking size means everything. They are sadly mistaken and find out soon enough in High School when size is less a factor. No longer do they tower over the other boys. No longer do they fire lightning from the mound. They are exposed as very average ball players. What a mess.

    • Darrell Coulter May 19, 2013 at 8:36 am

      Matt,

      Amen. I have been trying for years to keep young athletes from quitting baseball or pitching because of their size. I when I got drafted out of High School I was 5’10” and 151 lbs and could throw 88-91. Another problem that I believe is killing baseball is the natural myth. At a young age, as you have spoken about, they get by with their natural ability and never work on what it takes to get better, emotionally, mentally or physically. Thanks for your insight. Baseball needs more coaches like you. Let me know if I can help.

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