What does it take to be an All-Star?: Part 1

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 7, 2000

Sports Editor

What does it take to be a Tournament-Team player? That question is on the minds of a lot of parents and players throughout Troy and Rec Leagues everywhere about this time of the summer.

With the final games being played this week and next, each potential All-Star is trying to get those final hits or strike outs that might push his name to the top of the coaches’ lists. All will be decided pretty soon, however, and the question that always comes up is just how do they select who is and who isn’t an All-Star on the Tournament Team?

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Troy Park and Recreation Department assistant director Vaughn Daniels wipes his hands clean of the business and says it’s all in the coaches hands. The system that the Troy teams use gives each head coach a vote, but that doesn’t mean every name mentioned in the upcoming meetings will be on an Tournament-Team roster.

"The way the voting system is set up, no one is assured a spot on the All-Star roster," Daniels said. "These coaches evaluate the kids all through the year as to who is the best and must make their best judgement on what they have seen. They then pick 13 out of the league – 12 in softball – based on the combination of their votes."

The way the system is set up, for a player to actually be named to the Tournament Team roster, they first must appear on 80 percent of the votes cast by the combination of coaches in a number of rounds.

For example: If there are six teams in the league and five coaches vote for John Smith to be on the team, then he is a member. If only three place his name on the ballot he must wait for the next round.

The vote moves on to the second round after the first round is finished. If nine of the players voted for get 80 percent of the vote, then in the second round all the coaches must vote on four of the remaining players to fill up the rest of the roster. And so it goes until the roster is filled or no one player receives that 80-percent vote.

From there, which ever coach has won the league will name the final representatives to the team in which he will be coaching on the district and state level.

"We try and encourage the coaches to select the best players so they can compete and represent themselves well," Daniels said. "I leave it up to the coaches and it seems to work better that way.

"A lot of people say only the coaches’ kids make it on the team, but in my experience that isn’t always the case," he continued. "A lot of coaches kids do make it, but usually that is because their child is one of the better players in the league. The way this is set up it is hard for an undeserving player to make the team."

There are those who are left out, however, and that usually brings with it hurt feelings and questions from parents. While the process could never be perfect, Daniels feels it is a good system and at this point, till someone finds a better way, it is the one Troy will stick with.

"We just wish all of them could make it on a team," Daniels said. "It’s very disappointing that some kids are border line and don’t make it. We’re limited by the rules of the league and there are only so many spots on the rosters.

"We just want the best team for the kids and most of the children themselves know best of all who deserves to be out there," he continued. "The coaches overall do a great job at selecting the teams and that shows with our success throughout the state over the years."

This is Part 1 of a three-part series on the All-Star Tournament-Team selection.