Father knows best.
Growing up that was the role Tyler Kline's father played in his development, first as a baseball player, now as a baseball coach.
This summer Tyler has taken a step out of his father's shadow and into the spotlight of the Brainerd Parks and Recreation's Mustang League as a volunteer head coach.
But that is not the only role his father, Vince, plays in this story.
While Tyler is in the midst of his first head coaching experience he has had the opportunity to face off against the man who has taught him all he knows about coaching. His dad also coaches his son and Tyler's little brother on another Mustang team.
Vince Kline (left) and his son, Tyler, playfully posed for a picture Tuesday as they prepared to face off in a Mustang League baseball game at Bane Park in Brainerd. Vince's Rock Hounds avenged an early season 2-1 loss to Tyler's team by beating the Lugnuts 9-0.
Brainerd Dispatch/Steve Kohls
With two Klines coaching in the same league a matchup between their teams was inevitable.
The first time the Lugnuts, coached by Tyler, played the Rock Hounds, coached by Vince, youth overcame experience as the Lugnuts eked out a 2-1 victory.
Tuesday was the second time the teams squared off and this time Dad had the last laugh as the Rock Hounds defeated the Lugnuts 9-0.
In reality, though, the experience for both has very little to do with the outcome on the scoreboard and is more about the opportunity for a father to watch his son stretch his wings and for a son to take what he has learned from his dad and put his own brand of individuality into the process of coaching.
This situation has given a parent the opportunity to proudly watch their child turn into a young adult.
"It makes me proud," Vince said. "It is nice to see him doing this and that some of the things I have always stressed show up in the way he coaches.
"We both want to teach the kids a lot but to be respectful and using good sportsmanship and trying your best all the time are big. We are both really competitive and we want to win but we want to teach the right things."
The opportunity to coach his own team has also given
Tyler the chance to see some of the not-so apparent difficulties his father experienced in the process of coaching him as a young player.
"I have been coaching with my dad for a long time," Tyler said, "With some of my brothers' teams I have learned a lot from him over the years about interacting with the kids and moving them around to different positions. But being a head coach is a completely different thing. It is a lot harder than he made it look.
"We have the biggest team in the league and it is hard to keep track of who has played how much. Probably the hardest thing I have to do is telling the kids that they have to sit. It has helped me to learn a lot coaching against him to, just watching how he manages his team and kids."
Vince and Tyler have truly enjoyed the chance to coach their teams throughout the season in addition to the two head-to-head meetings so far.
"At the beginning I was surprised to hear that he wanted to coach a team," Vince said, "but it made me feel good that he wanted to volunteer. He loves sports and the game so much that he wanted to do that. It is just really fun facing him."
"It is pretty fun," Tyler agreed. "At this level there is not a whole lot you can teach them about the game and it's really more about having fun and improving this just adds to it."
In the meantime neither coach or team has given up on the idea of a potential championship game rubber match to settle the 1-1 series tie.
"I think both teams have a shot at facing off in the championship game," Vince said, "It would be great to play each other again and hopefully things will work out that way for the both of us."
With that type of endorsement a rematch seems to be a near foregone conclusion. Because, after all, father knows best.
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