My baseball players come from low-income backgrounds in Chicago. For many of them, this is their first opportunity to play a sport that, perhaps, they've dreamed about playing for their entire lives.
These young men are passionate, talented athletes--propelled by the desire to bring home wins to make themselves, our school and community proud but, more importantly, they're teammates and constantly amaze me by the level of support and sportsmanship that they show each other both on and off the field.
Naturally, they wish to find personal growth and development, refining their own individual talents on the field, but they're equally as driven to uplift and nurture the talents of their teammates because they know that we're only as strong as our weakest player. My players are as inspiring as they are inspired, compelling me to go above and beyond as their coach and provide them with the most memorable and successful athletic journey throughout their high school career.
All of the items that I've carefully and intentionally selected are basic, essential start-up equipment needed to teach, practice, and find success in playing baseball. My team cannot afford this equipment on their own but, without it, they are unable to play baseball. My team has very little in the way of equipment and, with the support of generous donors, these items can be used and enjoyed for years to come.
The equipment that I've carefully selected, like bats, mitts, and helmets, are basic essentials that will ensure that my athletes are not only safe when playing baseball but they will also take pride in their team and school while doing so.
The bats must be BBCOR brand to be in compliance with IHSA rules. Our team needs a catcher's mitt to enable the catchers to practice catching the pitcher's throws. We also need a first base mitt so the baseman is given the tools he needs to scoop up ground balls thrown at him. With the donation and purchase of these items, my players' level of self-esteem and subsequent performance will go up and, hopefully, we can bring home many victories for our school.
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