6/19/2007 – Turk Tidbits
Tuesday morning fifteen Turk players and two coaches visited our local Harrisonburg Boys and Girls Club to hold a baseball clinic. On a beautiful summer morning I watched the hearts of big, strong, college baseball players melt as they reached out to young children that had never played baseball before. It was a great opportunity for these young men to share the fundamental baseball skills that come so natural to them with children that struggled to play catch. I witnessed one of the most amazing sites I’ve seen in a while. Turks catcher, Andrew Franco (Appalachain State), was trying to encourage a special little boy to play pitch with him. You could tell that the child was very hesitant and not very excited about even trying to throw a baseball. By talking to the child a bit, Andrew put the child at ease and found out that the child loved to spell. As I stood and watched I saw this college player teach a special little boy how to throw a baseball by using something that the child enjoyed doing, spell. The child spelled out Andrew’s instructions as he learned how to move his arm to throw a ball; u-p, o-v-e-r, and d-o-w-n. Those of us standing around couldn’t believe what we were watching. As I looked around everyone had big smiles on their faces. That was just one of numerous situations where I saw our Turks reaching out and connecting with these children. It was obvious to see how happy these young children were to have the attention of the Turk players and learn how to throw and catch a ball. It was also exciting to watch how the Turk players responded to these children. I have been very impressed so far this season with how good the 2007 Turk players are, but today I saw another side of them. There’s more to these strapping big males that eat, sleep, and breathe baseball. They are also fine, quality young men and I am proud to have them a part of the Turk baseball family.