I hope baseball also gets a break

I have been playing competitive baseball over the last few weekends. The organizers of the Muntinlupa Little League tournament asked the coaches to form a team and join the seniors division (18 and above). Clearly the intent is to further expose these young men to more challenge.

I was asked by Coach Ronnie Lugay and my friend Leslie Suntay to join the coaches team. An opportunity that I did not need to think twice about. I have always loved baseball and take any chance I get to play the game.

We are scheduled to play for third place this Saturday and it has been an enriching experience for me. I was fortunate enough to play side by side several of the Philippines’ top players (some of whom also play for Baseball Philippines). Mr. Ponce, Rances and Labrador just to name a few were part of the team. Mr. Labrador(Charlie) being the Manila Sharks top pitcher while Mr. Ponce and Rances are two of the better infielders and contact hitters of the league.

If only these guys get a chance to play and represent the country in international play, I am confident that they will give other country’s a run for their money.

Just recently we hear of a group of 9-10 year olds playing in the Mustang level and dominating the field. A proof that the Philippines does have great talent and a program that works at the grassroots level.
There is clearly a gap between that and the chance to play at a professional level. Bridging that gap will ensure a good crop of world class baseball talent.

As the sun was going down last Saturday as we were winding down our game, several young boys were watching the coaches play. I just simply knew that they were learning from how their own mentors were playing the game. They could see exactly what their coaches mean when they are taught how to pick up a ground ball, how to run the bases, how to create contact and how to follow the signs. They also see that everything that is taught to them are actually of the same value at a little league game as it is in an adult game of baseball.

If we could only find a way to give baseball a break- I know we will be once a gain a powerhouse!