The opening of the Park City High School baseball team’s match on Monday did not go exactly as the miners drew it up.
They could not beat well and made several mistakes. When the first half ended, they were 8-0. While Park City’s comeback bid came short, it surpassed Grantsville 5-3 over the next six innings in the 11-5 loss.
Park City’s improvement from the start of the game to winning the last six innings is a microcosm of what summer baseball is all about for the miners.
“We came back, we competed, we didn’t just give in, and we actually won the next six innings,” said Matt Strader, who coaches the summer squad. “So I’m looking at it for our summer team, that’s the kind of success I like to build on.”
After a 9-19 season during the school year, Park City wants to use this summer to assess what went wrong and make the necessary improvements. Strader mentioned that the coaches are always available when the players want a little extra practice, but it is up to the players to get the most out of the summer.
“They’re not just going to get better when they come out three days a week and play summer games,” Strader said. “They have to put in extra time if they really want to get better too, and the coaches are always here for them if they want to.”
An average week for Park City’s summer baseball program involves two or three games, and players usually spend time in the weight room or cage when not playing. Strader’s goal is for them to have one hour of something baseball related per day. Players will also be involved in private or group classes or travel teams in the summer to keep them in baseball form.
In addition to a tough season this spring, the Miners also lost seven seniors, so this summer provides a golden opportunity for Park City’s younger players to improve ahead of next season. Park City’s coaching staff also has a strong relationship with local youth coaches so that children can go up to upper secondary education with minimal adjustments.
“I think we have a very good place,” Strader said. “I like our children who are concerned about getting better this summer. I like the younger groups that come up, so I think it’s all positive to move forward. ”
As the summer continues, there will still be an emphasis on improving as much as possible, regardless of the results on the scoreboard.
“Summer ball for us is really just more of a development, have fun, play games,” Strader said. “We do not have a structured practice, we are more about playing games, we are going to learn, get better, have fun.”