Earlier on Sunday, I had the youth indoor baseball tournament on my baseball to go list. I Just got there in time for the championship ceremony, which the Sluggers won for the 2nd time in a row plus I got the chance to use the radar gun and give the kids high fives for their effort;)
Big Lukas Kiner, 10 year old lefty pitcher from the Berlin Roadrunners (also participant of the Afroklauss Baseball School), threw an 84 kph fastball. Always fun when the people appreciate what you are trying to do.
I dont want to brag about the german baseball, but will try to highlight some of the nice things
that have been happening around here. For example there is a new indoor baseball facilty in Paderborn, Germany and its called Ahorn-Sportpark.
This January, the ISG Sports Group (USA) was represented by Tom O´Conell and his coaching team, who held a Clinc for Coaches at the Ahorn Sportpark. For me always a must go to event, I can learn something new and besides that all the others are there too.
Also on Sunday I had the time to talk to one of my teammates about going to Indy and I asked him, what could I tell a coach that has been coaching D1 College Baseball since 19 Years. He gave me a quick 10 minute seminar, called "the history of german baseball" from the 90ies till now...which was really helpful!
How it started playing on all "dirt/grass" soccer fields and now that every Bundesliga Team has a field with a cut out diamond, fences, backstop, and dugouts...
How these days there are kids like, 19 year old Marcus Solbach Pitcher from Pulheim Germany, signing pro contracts with the Minnesota Twins, or the 18 year old Max Kepler Rozycki a first baseman and outfielder from Berlin Germany, who also signed with the Minnesota Twins and is one of the top 10 prospects in their organisation.
|Berlin Sluggers Youth Team 1992|
It used to be different and most of the kids that played baseball weren t just good enough to excel in Soccer and therefore tried to play baseball in order to have succes/playing time, like it was just the other way around in the US.
Even things got better, there is still a lot more potential in this 80 Million strong nation.
The List of stuff, that my players want to have, is finally picking up:) Cleats, Pants, Glove, Skittles, Souvenirs, Catchers Helmet...