What is the Mission of the Softball Journey Web Site?
My name is Greg Cruthers and my mission is to help parents through their Softball Journeys - youth recreational leagues, school, travel/club, and college softball. I created the Softball Journey web site in 2013 to share my experiences in all levels of the game - parenting and coaching since 1998. Two of my daughters played softball; Brooke through varsity and Hayley through college. I coached at all stages except college. My final year of coaching (travel softball) was in 2020.
Some have called the blog the do's and don'ts of softball. Others have referred to it as a personal blog. Regardless of the labels, it has helped numerous people with their Softball Journeys. I've received hundreds of emails with words of encouragement and many others asking questions and advice. I began writing when Hayley went away to college - Ball State University. I also began coaching travel softball again with FireStix Fastpich, while serving as assistant coach for the Swartz Creek varsity team.
While Hayley was in her high school years going through the college recruiting process, I struggled to find help with it. Few resources were available, mostly out-dated books and of little help. Over those years I told my fellow parents from Hayley's travel team - Finesse Fastpitch - that I was going to write a book about it all someday. The blog, coaching, day job, side hustles, and life kept me too busy to write anything but short posts on this blog as topics came to mind.
However, I began writing drafts of the book several times - the last 50,000 words worth - only to scrap each one of them. It just felt like something was missing. Then, Hayley transferred to Valdosta State University for her final two years of college. Through those years up to the day she graduated in 2017, it became clear that there was more to add. But, I was still busy coaching and dealing with a long marital separation, divorce, and selling my home of 30 years. I quit writing again.
After a few years and the decision to step away from the game, I decided to finish the book. I had much more to say about the state of the game. I finished the first draft in December of 2020 - and after a lot of work - completed the book a few months later. Both the blog and the book were written to help you, the parent, make the most of yours and your daughter's Softball Journeys. The book is more detailed and intimate, focusing on Hayley's and my individual experiences, as well as ours together.
I hope you find them helpful and insightful. I appreciate all of the readers who've supported the blog over the years, all my softball acquaintances, friends, and family for encouraging me to write and share my knowledge and wisdom, and of course my daughter Hayley for her blessings. I wish you and your daughter the best of luck with your Softball Journeys!