The first ever Baseball camp for juniors on the island of Nevis, commenced at the Villa grounds in Charlestown on Monday 17th July, 2017.
According to Mr. Kelvin Bramble of the Youth and Sports Department, it is the first time that his department had added the sport to its roster for the summer camp programs.
The department recently acquired some Baseball gear and solicited the assistance of the St.Kitts and Nevis/USA program in coaching the basic skills of the game to interested youngsters on the island, with the main aim of developing a love for the game and ultimately getting a few professional players sometime in the future.
Keith Buell, president of the St.Kitts-Nevis/USA Association indicated that his association has made connections with Baseball teams in the USA and a program has also been developed, whereby parents of children who play Baseball in the USA, are contacted to collect and ship used baseball gear, which were previously used by their children, to St.Kitts and Nevis, where aspiring players in the federation will have access to the said gear.
The program of training the children, commenced in St.Kitts but since then, contact was made with Director of Sports on Nevis, Mr. Jamir Claxton and later Mr. Bramble was brought on board and now it has reached the point where the actual camp started on Monday 17th July.
Approximately ten children showed up for the first session.
Also on board with the program, is former baseball professional player and now coach-Benny Castillo.
He explained that he is originally from the Dominican Republic but migrated to the USA as a youth and eventually got drafted by the Detroit Tigers and played professional Baseball for 12 years.
He now runs a Baseball Academy in the USA and is committed to teaching the skills of the game to anyone who is willing to learn.
He noted that there are many scholarships are available through Baseball and encouraged the children to get on board with the game and one day they may even acquire a scholarship that will give them access to free educational opportunities.
He also indicated that there is a lot of money to be made in playing the game professionally as well.
He pointed out that the aim was not to stop children from playing Cricket and Football but that they must look at is as acquiring “another skill another resource,”he said.
He then commenced some drills with the children on hand.
The camp will run for the next two weeks and Mr. Bramble indicated that parents will be able to register their children, up to Friday of this week.