MLB European Academy Tirrenia

  Hello to all coaches! My name is Petr Stříbrcký and I have been chosen by EBCA Exchange Program to go to the MLB European Academy in Tirrenia for a week.

Arrival day:

   After a few hours of flight to Pisa, where was a time to see Pisa tower and taste Italian Pizza, I took a bus to get to Tirrenia. After half an hour of ride and 2 km of walk I finally got to CONI, where the MLB Academy tooks a place.

   It is  really hot Sunday and players have afternoon off after work out in the morning. I got keys from my room and headed to have a look over the whole facility. It is a huge complex of baseball and softball fields, surrounded by hitting cages on one side and bullpens on the other side. In between our dormitory and fields is huge tent full of indoor batting cages and pitching machines to be used in bad weather. Few meters far from the indoor cages is fully equiped gym. In the areal is also track and field and several soccer and rugby pitches.

   Dinner is schedule at 19:30 in local caffeteria. As menu you can choose of variety of pasta, meat and fish and vegetables with fruits.

Day 1:

   Getting up at 7:00 for breakfast.
   At 8:00 chosen players are going to work on their positions or hitting in small groups with coaches. Official start of the morning session is at 9:00. By then
I have allready been introduced to all coaching staff here.

   Morning sesion starts of with  good warm up under the supervision of Jeff Krushell. Then players are devided into groups. Infielders and outfielders are working on the field  on their routines and alongside hitters are using all the cages. This part is finished by Batting Practice. I joined pitchers groups led by Bruce Hurst. Our group took place behind homerun fance on the small practice field. Pitchers were devided in two groups and were working on PFP. One group worked on covering 1st base and bunts to the 1st base side. Other group worked on throws to the 2nd base and covering 3rd base side.

   After loads of repetitions in fast tempo pitchers took a water brake and switched groups. At the end of PFP was short sum up of all purposes of PFP and its importance for pitchers in the game. Morning practice was finished by bullpens for selected pitchers and the rest have done work out with Jeff.

   For afternoon part was scheduled a game between Team Red and Team Blue. I took part of a Team Read as first base coach. Pitchers dominated this game and hitters did not have many productive at bats. Any time coaches needed to explain something to the players, game was stopped and at the end of the game players have learned tons of new stuff. Players which were not on the rosters for this game have done position work outs on practice fields.

   After the game was a short meeting with all players and coaches and further program has been announced.

Tomorrow will begining at 8:00 with selected players in hitting cages.

Lets get ready….

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