Participants learn baseball skills in camp at Bowling Green School

Published 1:43 pm Friday, July 20, 2018

By Chris Kinkaid
The Daily News

Bowling Green School held a baseball camp in mid-June and taught the campers about the sport to help improve their skills.
The campers ranged in age from 8 to 13, but most were between 10-13.
“It was a lot of kids from the school, some from the outside,” Bowling Green coach Justin Garcia said. “I just want to see some faces and get them to see my face and the coaching staff and the players that we have here. The varsity guys are helping with the camp.”
The clinic had a little more than 20 participants.
“We’re just trying to teach them something about baseball, have a little fun and let them see our facilities and get to know the Bowling Green players and just kind of be around,” Garcia said.
Garcia said the camp started everyday with teaching different skills related to base running.
“We’ll start it with first base and leads, running through the bag and then we move to second and talk about situations and same thing at third base,” Garcia said. “The younger guys are mostly focused on where they hit the bag, the inside corner, straight lines, when to take your turns.”
“It’s about understanding the little things in baseball, the things we can control, which includes base running. If you can base run well, usually you can steal a run or two in games or not give outs. That is probably is the most important, not to give away outs when you only have to get 21 in a high school baseball game.”
The campers also worked on defensive skills. They also did competitions where they worked on footwork and throwing balls in the buckets. Other drills included getting behind the baseball and running to spots on the field in anticipation of the play.
“Some of them probably will eventually be here (on the high school team) and they’ll just get an idea of how we do things. It’s a lot of things we do every single day — just to stay fundamentally sound,” Garcia said.
Garcia feels it is really important for his high school players to teach the game, as well.
“They start to understand the ins-and-outs and really see it from a different angle than just constantly being taught,” he said. “I want to see what they’ve taken in from me. Sometimes, I tell them, ‘hey, go do outfield stuff.’ I won’t even give them the drills. ‘You go do the drills. You figure it out.’
“Most of the time, I give them the things to do, but I want them to watch the kids move and try to teach them something.”
Garcia said the best aspect of the camp was hitting, which they worked on after lunch each day. He said he enjoyed watching his players work with the campers on hitting, because it is more of a one-on-one skill.
“Some of the guys I’ve been proud of, seeing they’re picking things up like, ‘move your hands up’ or ‘get started sooner,’” Garcia said. “It’s a lot of things I tell them that they finally probably see for the first time from the outside and say, ‘ why don’t I do that.’ You can learn so much from teaching.”