News & Press Releases for Dixie Softball
2015 STATE MEETING ARE JUST AROUND THE CORNER
The 2015 Dixie Softball state meetins will be held on the following dates and at the following places:
GEORGIA - JANUARY 17 - Barnesville Recreation Center in Barnesville
FLORIDA - JANUARY 24 - Holiday Inn in Lake City
NORTH CAROLINA - JANUARY 24 - Hampton Inn & Suites in Southern Pines/Aderdeen
TEXAS - JANUARY 25 - The Reserve in Longview
MISSISSIPPI - JANURARY 31 - Comfort Inn & Suites in Hattiesburg
VIRGINIA - FEBRUARY 7 - Liberty Mountain Conference Center in Lynchburg
ALABAMA - FEBRUARY 7 - Opelika Sportsflex in Opelika
LOUISIANA - FEBRUARY 7 - Keys Park in Pineville
ARKANSAS - FEBRUARY 15 - Nashville Parks & Recreation in Nashville
SOUTH CAROLINA - FEBRUARY 21 - Sea Mist Oceanfront Resort in Myrtle Beach
TENNESSEE - FEBRUARY 28 - Montgomery Bell State Park in Burns
Please attend your state meeting because you can receive very important information and updates about Dixie Softball. You will also be able to meet district, state and national officials as well as officials suppliers.
The following Dixie Softball state directors are up for election in 2015: LOUISIANA, MISSISSIPPI, NORTH CAROLINA, TENNESSEE and VIRGINIA. Nominations for state directors are to be sent by mail postmarked on or before April 1, 2015 to: Preston Leonard, DSI vice president, P. O. Box 550715, Gastonia, NC 28055.
Frank Perkins decided to step down as Virginia's state director after many years of serving in that position. Perkins had been elected as Dixie Softball's national Ponytails commissioner in September 2013 and he felt like the state of Virginia would be better served if he stepped down as state director. He will be serving as the national Ponytails commissioner only.
Dale Wooding, Virginia's national director, was appointed to replace Perkins as Virginia's state director and will finish out Perkins' term as state director. Wooding stepped down from his national director's position in order to serve as state director. Wooding will be up for election in 2015.
Upon Wooding's resignation as Virginia's national director, Mark Nutter, who had served Dixie Softball over the years with the position of district director being his last position to hold, was appointed to serve out Wooding's term as Virginia's national director. Nutter will be up for election in 2017.
Ralph Henson, South Carolina's national director was tapped to be the Dixie Softball Umpire Committee chairman beginning witth the 2015 DSI season.
Dale Wooding stepped down as chairman following his appointment to the Virginia state director position in August of 2014.
Henson's contact information is: 780 Brockman McClimon Road, Greer, South Carolina 29651, Phone: (864) 270-3119, E-mail: email@example.com.
All umpires will have to take the umpire test either by mail or online in 2015. Online registration can be done at softball.dixie.org.
The 2015 Dixie Softball national board of directors made the following changes beginning with the 2015 season:
1. The population limit for leagues was changed from 25,000 to: 30,000
2. The date deadline to apply for a Dixie Softball application has been moved from March 1 to: February 1.
3. The SweeTees will allow the batters, in tournament play only, to have five (5) pitches thrown to them or three (3) strikes, whichever comes first.
4. Tournament directors will have the right to institute a break in tournament games due to weather conditions such as heat.
5. Caps and visors may be worn under a batting/running helmet as long as the cap/visor does not cause the helmet to fit incorrectly.
6. Uniform color restrictions on optic-yellow uniforms and helmets have been lifted.
7. For clarity for scorekeepers, if uniform jerseys have a name on them only the last name of the player shall appear. Initials or the first name of a player may appear as long as the last name is on the jersey. No first name shall appear alone. No nickname will be allowed.
8. World Series state teams must wear jerseys that prominently designates their respective state. League names may appear on the jerseys in a less prominent postion and team name will be prohibited. Host team are to wear their league's name in the prominent position on jerseys. No team name will appear on Host jerseys.
9. Managers have five (5) minutes to get to the official scorekeeper and sign their pitching record in tournament play. If a manager does not sign the pitching record within the five (5) minute limit the manager will not be allowed to be in the dugout area or the playing field the following game.
10. Players who do not participate in all of thier Dixie Softball tournament team's games or quits the team once tournament play begins because of travel ball play, showcase tournaments, etc., shall not be allowed to participate in Dixie Softball tournament play the following year.
Dixie Softball presented its 2014 Special Awards at the national meeting of the board of directors in September 2014. Those awards were presented to:
GORDON L. HOBBS DSI SPIRIT AWARD - Liberty, Texas 2014 Ponytails All-Star team and the Pontchatoula, Louisisana league;
CAROL M. WARNER DSI DIRECTOR AWARD - Mississippi Dixie Softball;
YVONNE L. BRIGHT DSI LEADERSHIP AWARD - Dena Lenoir, Alabama District 8 Director;
DSI "K" AWARD - LeAnn Sanders (Shelton) of Ethelsville, Alabama;
DSI 5-YEAR SERVICE AWARD - Jennifer McDonald, Tennessee national director;
DSI 15-YEAR SERVICE AWARD - Ralph Henson, South Carolina nationla director;
DSI 30-YEAR SERVICE AWARD - Gordon L. Hobbos, DSI vice president emeritus;
DSI 40 YEAR SERVICE AWARD - James E. "Obie" Evans, president.
The 2016 Dixie Softball World Series sites have been selected. They will be hosted by:
SWEETEES - Perry Jr. League, Georgia
DARLINGS - Petal, Mississippi
ANGELS TRADITIONAL - North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
ANGELS X-play - Alexandria, Louisiana
PONYTAILS TRADITIONAL - North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
PONYTAILS X-play - Alexandria, Louisiana
BELLES - North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
DEBS - Alexandria, Louisiana
The 2015 Dixie Softball World Series sites will be located in:
Alexanderia, Louisiana (teams arriv3 on July 31)
Monroe/West Monroe, Louisiana (teams arrive on July 31)
Monroe/West Monroe, Louisiana (teams arrive on July 31)
Moore County (Carthage), North Carolina (teams arrive on August 7)
Hartsville, South Carolina (teams arrive on July 24)
Moore County (Carthage), North Carolina (teams arrive on August 7)
Monroe/West Monroe, Louisiana (teams arrive on July 31)
Monroe/West Monroe, Louisiana (teams arrive on July 31)
TENNESSEE WINS INAUGURAL SWEETEES WORLD SERIES
LEXINGTON, TENNESSEE defeated JENA, LOUISIANA twice ( 22-11 and 13-10) on the final day of play to win the very first Dixie SweeTees World Series championship that was hosted by the BAY ST. LOUIS, MISSISSIPPI Dixie Softall league.
The James E. "Obie" Evans Sportsmanship Award was presented to the team from WESLEY CHAPEL, FLORIDA.
The remaining teams in the Series were: ENTERPRISE, ALABAMA; MAGEE, MISSISSIPPI; BOGER CITY OPTIMIST, NORTH CAROLINA; AYNOR AREA, SOUTH CAROLINA and BUCKINGHAM, VIRGINIA.
The 2015 Dixie SweeTees World Series will be hosted by the ALEXANDRIA, LOUISIANA Dixie Softball league.
ALABAMA WINS HARD FOUGHT DARLINGS CHAMPIONSHIP
Meeting earlier in the Dixie Darlings World Series, hosted by the BAY ST. LOUIS, MISSISSIPPI Dixie Softball program, TALLASSEE, ALABAMA and SABINE, LOUISIANA played to a hard fought 3-2 victory by Alabama. Louisiana came back strong in the first game of the championship round and defeated Alabama 10-2 thus forcing a one-game playoff for the Series championship. In the second game Alabama was able to regroup and took a 10-0 victory to secure the World Series championship.
The James E. "Obie" Evans sportsmanship Award was presented to the Host team BAY ST. LOUIS, MISSISSIPPI.
The remaining teams in the Series were: HOLMES COUNTY, FLORIDA; TAYLOR COUNTY, GEORGIA; TAYLORSVILLE, MISSISSIPPI; DUNN, NORTH CAROLINA; DILLON, SOUTH CAROLINA; WAYNE COUNTY, TENNESSEE; FRANKLIN COUNTY, TEXAS and AMHERST COUNTY AMERICAN, VIRGINIA.
The 2015 Dixie Darlings World Series will be hosted by the MONROE/WEST MONROE, LOUISIANA Dixie Softball leagues.
ANGELS X-play WORLD SERIES WON BY NORTH CAROLINA
Defeating DOTHAN AMERICAN, ALABAMA by the score of 4-2, BURGAW, NORTH CAROLINA won the 3rd Annual Dixie Angels X-play World Series hosted by the ATOKA, TENNESSEE Dixie Softball league.
The James E. "Obie" Evans" Sportsmanship Award was presented to the HOPKINS COUNTY AMERICAN, TEXAS team.
The remaining teams in the Series were: BROKEN BOW, OKLAHOMA; SPRING HILL, FLORIDA; JONES COUNTY NATIONAL, GEORGIA; WEST MONROE NATIONAL, LOUISIANA; EAST CENTRAL, MISSISSIPPI; AYNOR AREA, SOUTH CAROLINA; MADISON CENTRAL, TENNESSEE and HALIFAX COUNTY AMERICAN, VIRGINIA.
The 2015 Dixie Angels X-play World Series will be hosted by the MOORE COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA Dixie Softball league.
LOUISIANA STRUGGLES BUT REPEATS AS DEBS CHAMPIONS
After defeating BRUNSWICK COUNTY WEST, NORTH CAROLINA 1-0 earlier in the 39th Annual Dixie Debs World Series ALEXANDRIA, LOUISIANA was downed on the final day of play by the North Carolina team 6-5. This forced a second game on the final day which Alexandria won 17-9 to repeat as the Dixie Debs World Series winner for the second year in a row and win the James A. Webb/Clarence Jordan Championship Award.
World Series Host, ATOKA, TENNESSEE was presented the Jessica Gail Wood/James E. "Obie" Evans Sportsmanship Award.
The remaining teams in the Series were: ENTERPRISE, ALABAMA; IDABEL, OKLAHOMA; WEST PASCO, FLORIDA; SOUTHEAST DOUGHERTY, GEORGIA; MAGEE, MISSISSIPPI; LANCASTER AMERICAN, SOUTH CAROLINA; McEWEN, TENNESSEE; ALTO, TEXAS and CREWE-BURKEVILLE, VIRGINIA.
The 2015 Dixie Debs World Series will be hosted by the MONROE-WEST MONROE, LOUISIANA Dixie Softball league.
LOUISIANA TAKES DIXIE PONYTAILS X-play CROWN
With three teams with one-loss each on the final day of play at the 3rd Annual Dixie Ponytails X-play World Series hosted by the PONCHATOULA, LOUISIANA Dixie Softball program, JEFFERSON PARISH WESTBANK WEST, LOUISIANA drew the bye into the championship game and MONTGOMERY COUNTY, VIRGINIA defeated WEST ROBESON, NORTH CAROLINA 9-4 and advanced to the championship game. LOUISIANA downed VIRGINIA 10-2 to claim the championship. NORTH CAROLINA and VIRGINIA were co-runners-up.
SPRING HILL, FLORIDA was awarded the James E. "Obie" Evans Sportsmanship Award.
The remaining teams in the Series were: MONTGOMERY AMERICAN, ALABAMA; BROKEN BOW, OKLAHOMA; INDIANOLA, MISSISSIPPI; COLUMBIA DEAN GRINER, MISSISSIPPI; ANYOR AREA, SOUTH CAROLINA; HOUSTON COUNTY, TENNESSEE and HOPKINS COUNTY AMERICAN, TEXAS.
The 2015 Dixie Ponytails X-play World Series will be hosted by the Moore County, North Carolina Dixie Softball league.
NORTH CAROLINA COME BACK WINS DIXIE BELLES WORLD SERIES
Going into the last day of play undefeated, BURGAW OPTIMIST, NORTH CAROLINA was defeated in a tight 8-7 game, by the RAYVILLE, LOUISIANA team which then forced the "if necessary" game. NORTH CAROLINA came roaring back a short time later with a 12-7 victory over LOUISIANA to win the 39th Annual Dixie Softball Belles World Series hosted by the PONCHATOULA, LOUISIANA Dixie Softball program.
The James E. "Obie" Evans Sportsmanship Award was presented to the GEORGETOWN, SOUTH CAROLINA.
The remaining teams in the Series were: TROY, ALABAMA; BROKEN BOW, OKLAHOMA; FRANKLIN COUNTY, FLORIDA; PERRY JUNIOR LEAGUE, GEORGIA; MISSISSIPPI (MAGEE), MISSISSIPPI; WAYNE COUNTY, TENNESSEE; LIBERTY, TEXAS and HALIFAX COUNTY AMERICAN, VIRGINIA.
The 2015 Dixie Belles World Series will be hosted by the Monroe/West Monroe, Louisiana Dixie Softball league.
GEORGIA WINS ITS FIRST EVER FASTPITCH WORLD SERIES
The only Dixie Softball World Series the state of Georgia had ever won was when Dixie Softball offered Slow-Pitch in the 1980's and early 2000's. BALDWIN COUNTY, GEORGIA broke the 39 year string when they defeated RUSTBURG, VIRGINIA in the 2014 Angels World Series hosted by the NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SOUTH CAROLINA Dixie Softball league to win the Charles R. "Zack" Black Angels Championship Award. Virginia had forced the "if" game when they had earlier downed the undefeated Georgia team 7-5 on the final day of play.
The coveted Ashley Lyn Pipkin/James E. "Obie" Evans Sportsmanship Award was presented to the TURBEVILLE, SOUTH CAROLINA team.
The remaining teams in the World Series were: SOUTH DALE, ALABAMA; MARIANNA, FLORIDA; RAYVILLE, LOUISIANA ; COLUMBIA DEAN GRINER, MISSISSIPPI; HOPE MILLS, NORTH CAROLINA; CROCKETT COUNTY, TENNESSEE and FRANKLIN COUNTY, TEXAS.
The 2015 Dixie Angels TRADITIONAL World Series will be played in MONROE/WEST MONROE, LOUISIANA.
VIRGINIA WINS FIRST PONYTAILS TITLE
HALIFAX COUNTY AMERICAN, VIRGINIA became the first Virginia team to win a Dixie Ponytails World Series in Dixie Softball's 39-year history of Ponytails World Series' when they defeated COLUMBIA COUNTY, GEORGIA 16-3. The Virginia team was presented the Richard T. Murphy, Sr. Championship award. The Series was hosted by the NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SOUTH CAROLINA Dixie Softball league.
The James E. "Obie" Evans Sportsmanship Award was presented to the team from WINNSBORO, TEXAS.
The remaining teams in the World Series were: TAYLOR-REHOBETH, ALABAMA; PAXTON, FLORIDA; WEST MONROE NATIONAL, LOUISIANA; NATCHEZ AMERICAN, MISSISSIPPI; LUMBERTON, NORTH CAROLINA; LATTA, SOUTH CAROLINA and WAYNE COUNTY, TENNESSEE.
The 2015 Dixie Ponytails TRADITIONAL World Series will be played in HARTSVILLE, SOUTH CAROLINA.
01/29/2014In addition to professionally designed websites that are easy to navigate and easy to manage, TigerSix offers the local league a number of solutions to reducing or eliminating countless hours of administrative work. Many NEW features have been added this year!!! Sign up today for your free website at: http://www.tigersix.net/register and use the coupon code "dixie" to get your free site. There will be a $3.50 per player registration fee. Please visit www.tigersix.com or call John at 610-442-1315 (email: firstname.lastname@example.org)or Stacy at 561-891-9040 (email: email@example.com) with questions or inquiries. OR call toll free at 888-910-8060 John: ext. 222Stacy: ext. 233
10/24/2013Dixie Softball and MOTEL 6 announce a special partnership that will offer a 10% discount on all reservations. Below is the information to be used when making reservations at MOTEL 6: Welcome to Motel 6? Corporate Plus @ 6 Program! Your organizations? assigned corporate account number is CP572485, and must be referenced at the time of reservation or check-in to insure the 10% discount is received. Reservations can be made by calling 1-800-4MOTEL6 (1-800-466-8356) or at www.motel6.com. For group reservations it is suggested that a call to our group sales department at: 800-544-4866. Your discount may not be used with any other discounts or coupons. This offer is valid through December 31, 2014 Your special URL: http://www.motel6.com/reservations/promo.aspx?id=dsl1dde4&WT.mc_id=CP572485
09/26/2013Those inducted into the Dixie Softball Hall of Fame for the year of 2013 by a 70% or more of the votes cast by the Dixie Softball Hall of Fame Committee are:PIONEER PLAYERS ? Karen Echols of Hillview/78 West, Alabama; Dawn Wingerter (Whitmer) of Jefferson Parish Westbank, LouisianaPLAYERS ? Kristen Bonnett of Hueytown, Alabama; Kristen ?Kristi? Hobbs of Adamsville/78 West, Alabama; Jennifer Lea Nunn (Finch) of Clarksville, Virginia; LeAnn Sanders of Pickens County/Reform, AlabamaLEAGUES ? Town Creek, North Carolina; Loris, South Carolina; Bonham, Texas; Motley, VirginiaCOACH/LEAGUE ADMINISTRATOR ? The late Ernie Wade of Humphreys County/Waverly, TennesseeCOACH ? Eddie Daniels of Forest Hill, MississippiUMPIRE ? The late Rick Hartley of Hernando County, FloridaDIXIE SOFTBALL ADMINISTRATORS ? Ronald Anderson of Henager, Alabama; Lee Overstreet of Old Hickory, Tennessee; Danny Brooks of Brooksville, FloridaSPECIAL CONTRIBUTOR/COACH ? The late Ruby Heafner of Kings Mountain, North Carolina
Pennant Sports has been named by Dixie Softball, Inc. as the official supplier of tournament softballs for the 2015 and 2016 Dixie Softball seasons. All Dixie Softball tournament for the 2015 and 2016 Dixie Softball seasons must use only softballs produced by Pennant Sports.
Pennant (formerly JP Sports/Paul’s) is a long-time supporter of Dixie Softball. Congratulations to Pennant Sports !!!!!!!
NOTED SURGEON DR. JAMES ANDREWS WANTS YOUR YOUNG ATHLETE TO STAY HEALTHY BY PLAYING LESS.
CLEVELAND, Ohio -- James Andrews has seen enough.
Enough of coaches who mean well and try hard, but who really don't know what they need to know.
Enough of parents who think their son or daughter is the next superstar athlete and must be pushed and pushed and pushed.
Enough of youngsters who are forced to visit him and his colleagues around the nation.
Andrews has become so alarmed that he is issuing written and verbal warnings to anyone willing to read or listen. Why should the public care what Andrews thinks? Because when the "Dr." is placed in front of his name, he becomes a world-renowned orthopedic surgeon.
Andrews, who has practiced medicine for nearly 40 years, is most famous for his ability to put professional athletes back together. These athletes -- notably, a who's who of quarterbacks -- have signed contracts for a combined total well north of $1 billion after his surgeries. In 2010, Andrews was the only doctor to be named among the top 40 most powerful people in the NFL by Sports Illustrated.
Andrews' specialties are knees, elbows and shoulders. One of his recent patients was Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, who needed the anterior cruciate ligament and lateral collateral ligament repaired in his right knee.
The work on athletes, while important, isn't the reason Andrews collaborated with Don Yaeger, a former associate editor at Sports Illustrated, to write, "Any Given Monday: Sports Injuries and How to Prevent Them, for Athletes, Parents and Coaches -- Based on My Life in Sports Medicine." He felt compelled to write the book, then talk about it, out of fear for the younger generation.
"I started seeing a sharp increase in youth sports injuries, particularly baseball, beginning around 2000," Andrews told The Plain Dealer in a telephone interview. "I started tracking and researching, and what we've seen is a five- to sevenfold increase in injury rates in youth sports across the board. I'm trying to help these kids, given the epidemic of injuries that we're seeing. That's sort of my mission: to keep them on the playing field and out of the operating room.
"I hate to see the kids that we used to not see get hurt. ... Now they're coming in with adult, mature-type sports injuries. It's a real mess. Maybe this book will help make a dent."
The Dr. James Andrews file
Education: Louisiana State (standout pole vaulter); LSU School of Medicine; Tulane (residency).
Mentor: Dr. Jack C. Hughston.
Offices: Andrews Sports Medicine & Orthopaedic Center in Birmingham, Ala., and Andrews Institute for Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine in Gulf Breeze, Fla.
Former and current patients: Roger Clemens, Albert Pujols, Charles Barkley, Scottie Pippen, Kerri Strug, Jack Nicklaus, Troy Aikman, Drew Brees, Brett Favre, Bo Jackson, Emmitt Smith, Terrell Owens, Matthew Stafford, Sam Bradford, Peyton Manning, Eli Manning, Trent Richardson, Robert Griffin III, Adrian Peterson, Marcus Lattimore and a member of the Saudi royal family (torn ACL).
— Dennis Manoloff
Andrews debunks sports myths
PD: What is the crux of the mission?
J.A.: The deal is, as sports physicians, we've all been amiss for years worrying about putting people back together and fixing things and new techniques. But we've largely ignored the real problem: prevention of injuries. Everybody now agrees that the time is right to keep these kids from getting hurt so often. That's been my mission for 10 to 12 years, and it's really come to the forefront that last three to four years, when I helped start a prevention program with the sports-medicine society that we call the STOP program: Sports Trauma and Overuse Prevention (in youth sports).
All proceeds from the book are going to the STOP program. It's not an "I" thing, not a financial thing, for me. It's a passion.
PD: Why the spike in youth injuries?
J.A.: Multiple factors, but two stand out: specialization and what we call professionalism.
Specialization leads to playing the sport year-round. That means not only an increase in risk factors for traumatic injuries but a sky-high increase in overuse injuries. Almost half of sports injuries in adolescents stem from overuse.
Professionalism is taking these kids at a young age and trying to work them as if they are pro athletes, in terms of training and year-round activity. Some can do it, like Tiger Woods. He was treated like a professional golfer when he was 4, 5, 6 years old. But you've got to realize that Tiger Woods is a special case. A lot of these kids don't have the ability to withstand that type of training and that type of parental/coach pressure.
Now parents are hiring ex-pro baseball players as hitting and pitching instructors when their kid is 12. They're thinking, 'What's more is better,' and they're ending up getting the kids hurt.
PD: Is money at the root of the problem -- e.g., the pursuit of college scholarships or pro contracts?
J.A.: The almighty dollar has a lot to do with it, yes. Some parents are putting a football or baseball in their kids' hands when they're 3 years old, and it's not just for a fun little photograph. Parents are projecting 10, 12 years. Don't get me wrong, I'm for sports. I love sports. I want these kids to reach their full potential, and if the potential is a college scholarship, great. If it's a pro career, great. But to think they're all going to be professional athletes is misguided. The odds against it are so very, very high. Even the ones who get college scholarships comprise a much smaller percentage than parents think.
Sports Insider: Dennis Manoloff talks about Dr. James Andrews interview
On today's episode of Sports Insider, cleveland.com's Glenn Moore speaks with The Plain Dealer's Dennis Manoloff about his interview with Dr. James Andrews.
PD: Can parents be put in a no-win position as well?
J.A.: Yes, to this extent: The systems out there in youth sports, particularly travel ball, have been important financial resources for the people who run them. Parents spend a fortune keeping their kids in a year-round sport, with travel and everything else. What's happening is, the tail is wagging the dog. The systems are calling the shots: If your son or daughter doesn't play my sport year-round, he or she can't play for me. Never mind that your kid is 12 -- I need year-round dedication.
Parents need to understand that we've got to correct the system. Unfortunately, it's easier said than done. It's a big problem. And it becomes a socioeconomic problem if they keep getting hurt in high school.
PD: The best advice you would give parents of a young athlete?
J.A.: The first thing I would tell them is, their kid needs at least two months off each year to recover from a specific sport. Preferably, three to four months. Example: youth baseball. For at least two months, preferably three to four months, they don't need to do any kind of overhead throwing, any kind of overhead sport, and let the body recover in order to avoid overuse situations. That's why we're seeing so many Tommy John procedures, which is an adult operation designed for professionals. In my practice now, 30 to 40 percent of the ones I'm doing are on high-schoolers, even down to ages 12 or 13. They're already coming in with torn ligaments.
Give them time off to recover. Please. Give them time to recover.
I said in the book, I want parents and coaches to realize the implications of putting a 12- or 13-year-old through the type of athletic work done by a 25-year-old. Parents and coaches, though they mean well, need to understand what the long-term effects of overuse can be.
PD: What are your thoughts on youngsters throwing curveballs?
J.A.: Throwing a curveball has a neuromuscular-control dynamic. In other words, it takes a lot of natural ability at a young age to throw that pitch. It's a complicated pitch. If you throw it with good mechanics, it doesn't have any greater force on your shoulder than throwing other pitches, but you've got to throw it correctly. It's misleading to say it's OK to throw the curveball with good mechanics because the rub is, most kids don't throw it with good mechanics. My rule of thumb is, don't throw the curveball until you can shave, until your bone structure has matured and you have the neuromuscular control to be able to throw the pitch properly.
PD: What advice would you give pitchers, in general?
J.A.: 1. Use proper mechanics. The No. 1 problem in any specific sport is improper mechanics.
2. Don't play year-round.
3. Avoid the radar gun at a young age. Don't try to overthrow. A lot of kids are 13 years old and checking the radar gun. That's going to get you in trouble. The radar gun makes you want to throw harder than you are capable of throwing.
4. Be very careful with showcases. I call them "show-off" cases because kids go there Saturday after throwing the football on Friday. They jump on a mound and overthrow because scouts are there. The next thing you know, the shoulder or elbow gets injured.
HBO's Real Sports on Dr. James Andrews (Part II here)
PD: How many pro athletes have you operated on in your career?
J.A.: I've had people ask me that, and I don't like to answer with numbers because it might sound like I'm bragging or self-promoting. So I don't go into a specific number. (Chuckle) What I like to say is, "Too many to count and not enough to quit."
PD: What percentage of your total operations are done on pro athletes?
J.A.: About 20 percent. Now I'm getting to where I'm operating on the sons of ballplayers I had.
PD: Have you stopped to think about the money in player contracts for which you've been responsible by extending careers?
J.A.: (Chuckle) No. Seeing these guys get back to doing what they do best, that's where I derive the enjoyment. I don't worry about how much money they might make in the future. I wish them all the best, but it's nerve-racking just the same. Every play. In the NFC Championship Game a few years ago, the Vikings played the Saints. Brett Favre and Drew Brees were two of my patients. I was pulling for Drew on offense, then Brett on offense, so I couldn't lose. But I was nervous.
PD: It is easy to forget how many surgeries you do on nonstars.
J.A.: A huge joy for me comes from operating on kids in high schools near where I live, kids who were injured and didn't have insurance. We've had a policy through the years that, if you get hurt playing high school football in my area, we'll do the best we can to help. (Andrews has offices in Alabama and Florida.)
To see these kids come back and get a scholarship, or even a pro contract, is a thrill. I once had a high school basketball player in Mississippi whom nobody would fix. The coaches brought him to me. Well, he eventually signed an NBA contract and has had several contracts and made tens of millions of dollars. He came back to see me with another injury. I told him, "This time I'm going to charge you."
You'd be surprised in our part of the country how many kids get hurt. We've had kids playing in rural areas, great athletes who get hurt but never were able to get the proper medical attention.
PD: The most complex surgery you've ever done?
J.A.: Marcus Lattimore, running back from South Carolina -- his leg. Drew Brees' shoulder. I'll say this about Drew: It's amazing that he's been able to come back and throw a football, let alone play at the level he does.
PD: What goes through your mind when players such as Adrian Peterson, whose knee you fixed, come back to rush for 2,000 yards in one season?
J.A.: I don't want to take credit for things like that. If you operate on the right athletes, the high-level athletes, they will make you look pretty good as a physician. If you don't have athletes who are motivated, who are so driven to come back, it won't matter. And the people who get the players after the surgeries -- they're the ones who deserve the most credit. The physical therapy and rehab people. My time with them is a couple hours, then I become a cheerleader.
As an example, the people who rehabbed Adrian were incredible. The combination of Adrian's motivation, his God-given ability and the help he got post-surgery gave you what you saw on the field in 2012.
PD: Which is the more complicated surgery, torn ACL or Tommy John?
J.A.: Even though they involve different parts of the body, they are similar surgeries. I've called Tommy John the ACL of the elbow. Throwing a baseball at 90 miles an hour with a reconstructed elbow is equally as impressive as a running back coming back from an ACL tear.
PD: Have you ever needed to tell an athlete after surgery that it doesn't look good?
J.A.: My rule is, the glass is half full, not half empty. One of the things you don't do is wake up an athlete in the recovery room and say, "That's the worst injury I've ever seen, and you're not going to make it back." You've got to be positive. I told Drew [Brees]: "I could do your operation 100 times and probably couldn't do it as well as I did it today. You are going to get through this, and you will be better than ever. Now go to work."
At the same time, you have to be realistic. When you get to a certain point where you know they're not going to be able to make it, you let them down slowly. You don't tell them right away. You gradually work it in. As you get to know them better, you gradually let them know there is life after football.
PD: Because of your resume, do you feel pressure to deliver every time?
J.A.: Yes, I feel pressure. A lot of it. But the bulk of the pressure is what all of us feel in this profession. There is extra pressure because people come to me who've had multiple surgeries. All of a sudden, you are inundated with people who have had failed surgeries. They come to you and expect you to put them back together again. So the pressure mounts, believe me.
All of us in sports medicine operate in a fishbowl. If there's a failure, it's all over the place. But you can't be perfect with everything you do. You do the best you can. Unfortunately, the only results I ever really remember are the bad ones. Those are the ones you need to study in order to figure out what you can do better.
PD: You have known Browns running back Trent Richardson since his high school days in Florida.
J.A.: He's a special individual, as you all in Cleveland know by now. He played with broken ribs this past season. Imagine playing with broken ribs. That's how tough he is. He's a heck of a running back.
PD: Richardson has had surgeries on both ankles and two on the left knee. Is he injury prone?
J.A.: No, no, no, no. The injuries haven't been serious. He delivers a blow. That's what he does. He delivers more damage than anybody delivers to him. Just watch him play.
PD: Will he have a long, productive NFL career?
J.A.: I'm biased, of course, but, yes, absolutely. He can overcome almost anything. He has a great mental attitude, he can recover quickly and he's a survivor. That's the key to Trent: He's a survivor. The Cleveland Browns have a wonderful player who hasn't even scratched the surface.
The National Center for Sports Safety
FREE Online PREPARE Course!
Why Should I PREPARE?
In as little as 3 hours you can:
1 - Learn how to significantly reduce liability
where athletic injuries are concerned.
2 - Learn valuable information about sports safety and how to reduce risks.
3 - Gain knowledge that can be beneficial
on and off the playing field
Do you have the confidence you need to keep youth athletes safe?
BECOME SPORTS SAFETY EDUCATED TODAY!!
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Offer Expires: September 30, 2013
"There is not one parent that would drop their child off at a local community pool if there were not a certified lifeguard on duty. That same standard of care should be available for every sports facility in this country. If we can prevent just one fatality or injury, it will be worth the effort."
- Dr Larry Lemak, The NCSS Founder
About the NCSS
The NCSS was founded by Dr. Larry Lemak in 2001 to promote the importance of injury prevention and safety on all levels of youth sports through education and research.
2316 1st Avenue South
Birmingham, Alabama 35233
The NCSS has partnered with the State of Alabama to provide the PREPARE sports safety course, at no charge, to Alabama youth-level coaches.
Our goal is to decrease the number of sports injuries by helping youth and high school sporting events become safer venues through Emergency Action Planning.
What Will You Learn?
Heat & Cold Illnesses
Medical Considerations and
Principles of First Aid
Head, Neck & Facial Injuries
Warm-Up & Cool-Down
An injury can occur in a split second....BE PREPARED!!!!
Leading Health Conditions of Youth Athletes Explored and Solutions Put in Place
Birmingham, AL - February 7, 2013 - The National Center for Sports Safety participated in finalizing the inqugural "National Action Plan for Sports Safety" at the Fourth Annual Youth Sports Safety Summit in Washington, DC held on Tuesday. Proper education and protocols put in place were key factirs outlined in the Action Pln, and will aid in precenting and managing athletic injuries in your athletes across the nation. Read More....
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