***image1***“Fun while learning” was the whole point of the Major League Baseball envoy clinics held July 19 and 20 at the Landstuhl Twin Fields, Landstuhl Regional Medical Center.
Close to 100 youths, ages 6 to 18, learned baseball’s fundamentals from a MLB coach during the two, six-hour free clinics.
“We’re traveling to American military bases to give youths a fun day of learning baseball from a professional instructor,” said Jamey Woods, MLB international envoy coach and baseball coach at Jeff Davis Community College, Brewton, Ala.
“These clinics give them a chance to learn and improve their skills so they can play and perform better once I leave and for years to come in their baseball adventures,” he said.
Peter Benjamin, 9, attended the 2003 clinic and said it really helped him as the Angels’ first baseman during this year’s Landstuhl Youth Sports’ baseball season.
“I was a better player this season,” said Peter, a fourth-grader at Landstuhl Ele-mentary and Mid-dle School. “I hit farther. I aimed my throws better. I threw faster.”
Woods said the MLB envoy coaches can be called ambassadors for baseball because they travel throughout the world promoting it as an international sport. In this endeavor, they teach baseball clinics to military kids through youth and teen centers.
Installation Management Activity-Europe provides these envoy baseball clinics to posts throughout Europe. This was the third year the 415th Base Support Battalion’s Child and Youth Services hosted the envoy clinics for kids in the KMC.
“These clinics are important because the kids learn the fundamentals of the game,” said Anthony Broccoli, Landstuhl Youth Sports assistant sports director. “The coaches keep it as fun as possible for the kids while they are learning the proper techniques on how to bat, hold the glove and throw the ball.”
The KMC clinic was the third out of the seven clinics during this year’s MLB Envoy Program.