USA BASEBALL NEWS

2020-VirtualCoachClinic-FBTwitter-02

USA Baseball to Host Coaches Clinics Online

The online clinics will occur on Saturday, April 4, and Wednesday, April 8
March 31, 2020
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced today it will host two online Community Clinics in an effort to support coaches and parents currently enrolled in its Coaches Certification pathway. The free clinics will take place on Saturday, April 4, and Wednesday, April 8, from 12-3 p.m. ET. Registration for each
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced today it will host two online Community Clinics in an effort to support coaches and parents currently enrolled in its Coaches Certification pathway. The free clinics will take place on Saturday, April 4, and Wednesday, April 8, from 12-3 p.m. ET. Registration for each clinic is now open with limited spots available on CoachClinics.org.
The Coaches Certification pathway is a free three-tiered program consisting of ascending levels: "A" Certification, "B" Certification and "C" Certification. All of the levels contain a series of courses that cover topics such as health and safety, creating a positive team environment, recognizing and responding to misconduct, practice planning, game management and skill-specific development.
This program requires the participation in a Community or Regional Clinic in order to obtain a "C" Certification. The clinics are typically held year-round at facilities nationwide in partnership with the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association and GameChanger, but will be hosted online for the first time ever in 2020. The clinics are run by veteran coaches from all levels of baseball in order to proliferate a culture of continuing education, development and mentorship.
Committed to co-host the online clinics are six coaches affiliated with MLB Clubs. Additionally, coaches from Campbell University, Duke University, Georgia Gwinnett College, Paris Junior College, Swarthmore College and the University of Central Florida will also participate in the clinic.
"USA Baseball is excited to virtually host two Community Clinics as we continue to support the amateur baseball community by delivering free quality educational resources directly to coaches," said USA Baseball Director of Coaching Development Andrew Bartman. "As we continue to embrace the unprecedented situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, we are proud to provide alternative solutions to the coaches who are enrolled in our Coaches Certification program so that they will be able to continue enhancing our game for the millions of children who play baseball in the United States."
Upon completion of the certification, coaches simultaneously satisfy the training requirements set forth by Senate Bill 534 (SB 534) and also begin the process of becoming Pure Baseball compliant. In November 2018, USA Baseball announced Pure Baseball, a zero-tolerance policy regarding abuse constructed in cooperation with SB 534 and the policies created by the U.S. Center for SafeSport. To concurrently become Pure Baseball compliant, coaches need only submit to and pass an annual background check, which can be done at USABDevelops.com through USA Baseball's service provider, JD Palatine.
For more information on the Coaches Certification program and to begin the courses required to complete certification, visit CoachClinics.org. In addition to this new program, all courses and resources for players, coaches, parents and umpires on USABDevelops.com are available at no cost to users and aim to provide a positive baseball experience for all.
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PitchSmart

MLB, USA Baseball Supplement Pitch Smart Guidelines for 2021 Season

Additional guidelines emphasize systematic build up following reduced workloads in 2020
April 30, 2021
CARY, N.C. – Major League Baseball (MLB) and USA Baseball announced today supplemental guidelines to the Pitch Smart program for the 2021 season. Additions to the program for the upcoming season emphasize the need for pitchers of all ages to systematically build up their preparation for game competition following a

CARY, N.C. – Major League Baseball (MLB) and USA Baseball announced today supplemental guidelines to the Pitch Smart program for the 2021 season. Additions to the program for the upcoming season emphasize the need for pitchers of all ages to systematically build up their preparation for game competition following a reduced workload in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Launched in 2014, Pitch Smart is a joint initiative between MLB and USA Baseball that provides a series of practical, age-appropriate guidelines to help parents, players, and coaches avoid overuse injuries and foster long, healthy careers for amateur players. The Pitch Smart guidelines include age-specific pitching limits and required rest recommendations to limit the likelihood of injuries caused by pitching with fatigue.

Added to the Pitch Smart guidelines for 2021 are suggested daily maximum pitch counts with progression benchmarks for early season, mid-season, and late season, as well as an annual inning limit for players with reduced workloads in 2020. Additionally, tips on how young athletes can help reduce the spread of COVID-19 are in this update.

MLB and USA Baseball have also created a sample throwing program to assist athletes preparing for the upcoming season. The program progresses over four weeks and includes daily throwing routines and mandatory rest days. The sample is modeled for a 12-year-old youth league player but may easily be modified based on player age and field size. 

“The supplemental Pitch Smart guidelines are really important for the long-term arm health and development of young baseball players across the country as they continue through their spring and summer seasons,” said Tony Reagins, Chief Baseball Development Officer, Major League Baseball. “The pandemic robbed many of these young athletes of a normal season in 2020.  This steady, gradual plan includes a throwing program and progression benchmarks that will give players, coaches and parents the tools they need to have a fun and, most importantly, safe baseball season.” 

The standard Pitch Smart pitch counts and required rest recommendations continue to be the staple of the program for youth athletes across the globe. These guidelines remain unchanged since the latest update in 2017 and athletes aged seven to 22 who did not have a reduced workload in 2020 should continue to adhere to these standards to begin the season. The new supplemental recommendations for daily maximum pitch counts allow pitchers with reduced workloads last year to reach these standard guidelines by late season 2021.

“USA Baseball continues to champion Pitch Smart as a priority initiative for amateur baseball in the United States,” said USA Baseball Executive Director/CEO Paul Seiler. “All USA Baseball events and national teams continue to adhere to these standards and we cannot recommend highly enough that players, parents, and organizations adopt and implement these guidelines. The long-term health and safety of our athletes are paramount to continued growth and development of baseball worldwide.” 

Pitch Smart hosts a growing number of resources that can be found at PitchSmart.org, including a series of answers to frequently asked questions regarding Tommy John surgery and the complete pitching guidelines and recommended rest periods for all age groups. The program is further supported by a free online educational course hosted by Hall of Fame pitcher John Smoltz at USABDevelops.com.

Thirty-three international, national, and regional organizations are fully Pitch Smart compliant in 2021. Additionally, USA Baseball and Major League Baseball have recognized seven organizations as Select Compliant and three as Educational Supporters. One-hundred and twenty-four additional state and local organizations were also Full Compliant, Select Compliant, or Educational Supporter organizations for 2020. USA Baseball will continue to collaborate with all organizations on their Pitch Smart progress throughout the season.

Most recently, USA Baseball and MLB updated the Pitch Smart website to include special research sections, including one to “Maximize Performance,” such as the following:

  • Proper Pitching Mechanics
  • Relationship Between Pitch Velocity, Performance and Injury
  • Weighted Ball Throwing Programs
  • Long Toss and Interval Throwing Programs
  • Strength & Conditioning for Baseball Pitchers
  • Nutrition to Maximize Performance
  •  
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FBTW-Crashcourse1

USA Baseball and TeachAids Unite to Provide Concussion Education

April 12, 2021
CARY, N.C. – USA Baseball, the national governing body for the sport in the United States, announces a new partnership with TeachAids, an award-winning nonprofit leader in global education innovation. Together, they will distribute CrashCourse concussion content to educate athletes, parents and coaches throughout the nation. CrashCourse is an education

CARY, N.C. – USA Baseball, the national governing body for the sport in the United States, announces a new partnership with TeachAids, an award-winning nonprofit leader in global education innovation. Together, they will distribute CrashCourse concussion content to educate athletes, parents and coaches throughout the nation.

CrashCourse is an education initiative to provide the latest medical knowledge about the prevention and treatment of concussions. It was developed alongside leading medical, education, engineering, and science researchers and with input from world-class coaches and athletes. CrashCourse offers a unique educational experience that helps correct common myths and misconceptions in order to better recognize and address symptoms of a concussion.

“CrashCourse is a fantastic tool to raise awareness and understanding of concussions in athletes,” said Dr. Josh Bloom, Chief Medical Officer of the USA Baseball Medical Oversight Commission and Medical Director for Carolina Sports Concussion Clinic. “Simply put, the more our athletes know about these injuries, the better. We are proud that USA Baseball continues to be a leader in concussion education and treatment. Providing CrashCourse education for all levels of our athletes is another important positive step.”

Concussions are one of the most widely discussed issues in sports. USA Baseball prides itself in promoting best practices for concussion education amongst its community. It is proud to join a growing cohort of national governing bodies of sport that are providing the CrashCourse concussion education materials to their members.

“USA Baseball is excited to partner with TeachAids and their team of world class medical and scientific experts,” said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball Executive Director and CEO. “This partnership provides a valuable resource for our coaches and officials and a sound foundation for safer sport participation from youth leagues on up, both in practice and in competition.”

“We are proud to work with USA Baseball and look forward to instituting our CrashCourse concussion education into their programming. They have been a leader in supporting athletes of all ages with pedagogically grounded and effective education to make their sport safer for all,” says Dr. Piya Sorcar, Founder and CEO of TeachAids

The CrashCourse curriculum will be used throughout USA Baseball’s programs nationwide via their website. To find out more about CrashCourse by TeachAids, visit http://crashcourse.teachaids.org.

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YBM-YouthManual-TW1

USA Baseball Announces Development of Youth Baseball Manual

The manual aims to assist coaches in providing a safe, positive, development-based experience for athletes
April 9, 2021
CARY, N.C. – USA Baseball announced today the development of its new Youth Baseball Manual presented by US Sports Club Insurance. The manual aims to support the thousands of youth baseball coaches around the country by providing a positive, development-based experience to their athletes. The manual provides coaches with a

CARY, N.C. – USA Baseball announced today the development of its new Youth Baseball Manual presented by US Sports Club Insurance. The manual aims to support the thousands of youth baseball coaches around the country by providing a positive, development-based experience to their athletes.

The manual provides coaches with a fundamental framework to build an athlete-focused culture within their leagues and is suited for both youth leagues with longstanding traditions of on-field excellence, as well as for leagues and coaches that are building a program from the ground up. Importantly, the manual highlights health and safety resources to help ensure athletes are provided with a safe and secure environment for play.

The Youth Baseball Manual presented by US Sports Club Insurance is available to the public at no charge at www.USABDevelops.com or can be accessed directly at YouthBaseballManual.com.

“We are proud to provide free support to youth baseball programs and to thousands of volunteer coaches across the country with our new Youth Baseball Manual,” said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball Executive Director/CEO. “The importance of community-based baseball programs in the development of our game cannot be overstated, and USA Baseball is excited to help create a consistent framework for those programs so that athletes can continue to learn and grow in a safe, positive, and healthy environment.”

This initiative continues USA Baseball's reach into the amateur baseball landscape and specifically reinforces its commitment to the proliferation of community-based baseball in the United States. The manual boosts the youth baseball experience and allows for the consistent development for any athlete, regardless of their skill level.

Key concepts from the Youth Baseball Manual include:

  • The importance of emphasizing enjoyment of the game and the best interests of the athletes.
  • How to create appropriate practice and game plans based on the USA Baseball Long-Term Athlete Development Plan that enables maximum engagement, movement, and physical activity.
  • The benefits of supporting athletes’ participation in multiple sports.
  • How to manage relationships within a program, including conflict resolution techniques.
  • How to develop a positive team culture.
  • Best practices concerning health and safety.
  • How to keep the game fun.
  •  

For more information on the Youth Baseball Manual, and other similar educational resources produced by USA Baseball, such as the Mobile Coach App, Long-Term Athlete Development Plan and others, visit USABDevelops.com. All resources produced by USA Baseball are provided free of charge to the public.

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Clinics_Article

USA Baseball to Continue Offering Online Community Clinics

The virtual clinics will occur throughout the month of August
June 22, 2020
CARY, N.C. - USA Baseball announced today it is expanding its offerings of online Community Clinics through the month of August in an effort to support coaches and parents currently enrolled in its Coaches Certification pathway. The free clinics will take place on the following dates: Wednesday, August 5 from
CARY, N.C. - USA Baseball announced today it is expanding its offerings of online Community Clinics through the month of August in an effort to support coaches and parents currently enrolled in its Coaches Certification pathway. The free clinics will take place on the following dates:
Wednesday, August 5 from 12 - 3 p.m. ET
Wednesday, August 12 from 12 - 3 p.m. ET
Wednesday, August 19 from 12 - 3 p.m. ET
Wednesday, August 26 from 7 - 10 p.m. ET
Registration for each clinic is now open with limited spots available on CoachClinics.org.
The Coaches Certification pathway is a free three-tiered program consisting of ascending levels: "A" Certification, "B" Certification and "C" Certification. All of the levels contain a series of courses that cover topics such as health and safety, creating a positive team environment, recognizing and responding to misconduct, practice planning, game management and skill-specific development.
This program requires the participation in a Community or Regional Clinic in order to obtain a "C" Certification. The clinics are typically held year-round at facilities nationwide in partnership with the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association and GameChanger, but will be hosted online for the first time ever in 2020. The clinics are run by veteran coaches from all levels of baseball in order to proliferate a culture of continuing education, development and mentorship.
Upon completion of the certification, coaches simultaneously satisfy the training requirements set forth by Senate Bill 534 (SB 534) and also begin the process of becoming Pure Baseball compliant. In November 2018, USA Baseball announced Pure Baseball, a zero-tolerance policy regarding abuse constructed in cooperation with SB 534 and the policies created by the U.S. Center for SafeSport. To concurrently become Pure Baseball compliant, coaches need only submit to and pass an annual background check, which can be done at USABDevelops.com through USA Baseball's service provider, JD Palatine.
For more information on the Coaches Certification program and to begin the courses required to complete certification, visit CoachClinics.org. In addition to this new program, all courses and resources for players, coaches, parents and umpires on USABDevelops.com are available at no cost to users and aim to provide a positive baseball experience for all.
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FABAH_Article

USA Baseball Launches "Fun At Bat At Home"

The free program introduces young athletes to the game of baseball while encouraging them to stay active while at home.
April 22, 2020
CARY, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the launch of the "Fun At Bat At Home" program today as part of Major League Baseball's PLAY BALL At Home campaign. The free program takes the principles of the Fun At Bat program and modifies the curriculum into fun, easy activities for young
CARY, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the launch of the "Fun At Bat At Home" program today as part of Major League Baseball's PLAY BALL At Home campaign. The free program takes the principles of the Fun At Bat program and modifies the curriculum into fun, easy activities for young athletes and their families to participate in while at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
To access the Fun At Bat At Home resources, visit USABDevelops.com/FunAtBatAtHome.
A joint MLB and USA Baseball youth program, Fun At Bat was designed for physical education classes in schools to promote fun and active lifestyles for children while teaching the fundamental skills of bat-and-ball sports. The Fun At Bat At Home program includes a guide book with exercises, activities and tips for using alternative equipment with the aim of enabling children to learn the health-enhancing benefits of bat-and-ball sports, in addition to the fundamental skills and rules, all from the comfort of their home.
"We are pleased to provide parents and young athletes the resources to learn the game of baseball and pursue a healthy lifestyle during this unprecedented time through the Fun At Bat At Home initiative," said USA Baseball Director of Youth Programs Tyler Collins. "This addition to the core Fun At Bat program will give children the opportunity to continue to be physically active, while using minimal equipment within the confines of their own home."
Fun At Bat is part of Major League Baseball's PLAY BALL initiative-the sport's largest collective effort to encourage young people to participate in baseball- or softball-related activities. The Fun At Bat program reaches nearly 3.5 million children across all 50 states, Washington DC., Puerto Rico, Mexico, London, and Brazil. The program is available in English, Spanish and Portuguese, and also includes a literacy component focusing on character development and teaching traits such as leadership, teamwork and responsibility.
For more information on Fun At Bat, visit FunAtBat.org or follow @FunAtBat on Instagram and Twitter. Families are encouraged to share their experiences with a photo or video of their children participating in these fun baseball activities by using the hashtag #FABAtHome on social media.
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2020-VirtualCoachClinic-FBTwitter-ARTICLE

USA Baseball to Expand Online Coaches Clinics

The online clinics will occur on Wednesday, April 15, Saturday, April 25, and Wednesday, April 29
April 9, 2020
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced today it will expand its offering of online Community Clinics through the month of April in an effort to support coaches and parents currently enrolled in its Coaches Certification pathway. The free clinics will take place on Wednesday, April 15, Saturday, April 25, and
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced today it will expand its offering of online Community Clinics through the month of April in an effort to support coaches and parents currently enrolled in its Coaches Certification pathway. The free clinics will take place on Wednesday, April 15, Saturday, April 25, and Wednesday, April 29, from 12-3 p.m. ET. Registration for each clinic is now open with limited spots available on CoachClinics.org.
USA Baseball launched its first two online Community Clinics earlier this month and reached over 1,400 unique users and 150,000 total minutes consumed over the two sessions.
The Coaches Certification pathway is a free three-tiered program consisting of ascending levels: "A" Certification, "B" Certification and "C" Certification. All of the levels contain a series of courses that cover topics such as health and safety, creating a positive team environment, recognizing and responding to misconduct, practice planning, game management and skill-specific development.
This program requires the participation in a Community or Regional Clinic in order to obtain a "C" Certification. The clinics are typically held year-round at facilities nationwide in partnership with the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association and GameChanger, but will be hosted online for the first time ever in 2020. The clinics are run by veteran coaches from all levels of baseball in order to proliferate a culture of continuing education, development and mentorship.
Committed to co-host the online clinics are six coaches affiliated with MLB Clubs. Additionally, coaches from Campbell University, Duke University, Georgia Gwinnett College, Paris Junior College, Swarthmore College and the University of Central Florida will also participate in the clinic.
Upon completion of the certification, coaches simultaneously satisfy the training requirements set forth by Senate Bill 534 (SB 534) and also begin the process of becoming Pure Baseball compliant. In November 2018, USA Baseball announced Pure Baseball, a zero-tolerance policy regarding abuse constructed in cooperation with SB 534 and the policies created by the U.S. Center for SafeSport. To concurrently become Pure Baseball compliant, coaches need only submit to and pass an annual background check, which can be done at USABDevelops.com through USA Baseball's service provider, JD Palatine.
For more information on the Coaches Certification program and to begin the courses required to complete certification, visit CoachClinics.org. In addition to this new program, all courses and resources for players, coaches, parents and umpires on USABDevelops.com are available at no cost to users and aim to provide a positive baseball experience for all.
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EN4A7098

Texas Rangers Launch 'Fun At Bat' Program

Introductory "Bat-and-Ball" Program from USA Baseball Coming to 28 Arlington ISD Elementary Schools
March 5, 2020
The Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation is partnering with USA Baseball and Arlington ISD to launch USA Baseball's "Fun At Bat" program in 28 Arlington ISD elementary schools.Rangers alumni David Hulse and Jose Guzman, along with Rangers Captain, will be at Butler Elementary School tomorrow, Friday, March 6, from 1:10 -
The Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation is partnering with USA Baseball and Arlington ISD to launch USA Baseball's "Fun At Bat" program in 28 Arlington ISD elementary schools.
Rangers alumni David Hulse and Jose Guzman, along with Rangers Captain, will be at Butler Elementary School tomorrow, Friday, March 6, from 1:10 - 2:00 p.m. to launch Fun At Bat.
This USA Baseball youth initiative is an introductory bat-and-ball program created for use in elementary school Physical Education classes to promote fun and active lifestyles for children, while teaching them the fundamental skills of baseball and softball. The program also includes a literacy component, while teaching leadership, teamwork and fair play.
Fun At Bat is part of the PLAY BALL initiative, which is the sport's largest collective effort to encourage young people to participate in baseball- or softball-related activities, including formal leagues, special events and casual forms of play.
Participating schools receive a Franklin Sports equipment kit, digital access to SHAPE America co-developed curriculums, and a pack of books for group reading during physical education. Teachers also have access to a free online course, hosted by former Major League Baseball player Michael Cuddyer, that covers the fundamentals of the Fun At Bat program.
Over 11,000 students will benefit from the Fun At Bat programming the Rangers are launching in Arlington.
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FAB_Brazil

Fun At Bat to be Implemented in Schools in Ibiuna, Brazil

Thousands of Brazilian children will have access to the Fun At Bat program, which currently reaches students in the United States, Puerto Rico, Mexico & London
February 20, 2020
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL -- Major League Baseball and USA Baseball today announced that "Fun At Bat" (www.funatbat.org), the introductory and character building bat-and-ball program designed for use in physical education (P.E.) classes, will now be available to more than 2,000 elementary school students in Ibiuna, Brazil. The free program, which
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL -- Major League Baseball and USA Baseball today announced that "Fun At Bat" (www.funatbat.org), the introductory and character building bat-and-ball program designed for use in physical education (P.E.) classes, will now be available to more than 2,000 elementary school students in Ibiuna, Brazil. The free program, which is currently reaching nearly 3.5 million children in all 50 states, Washington D.C., Puerto Rico, Mexico and in London, will be administered in Brazil by Brazilian Baseball and Softball Confederation (CBBS) and Ibiuna City Hall, with support from both MLB and USA Baseball.
A joint MLB and USA Baseball youth program, Fun At Bat promotes fun and active lifestyles for children, while also teaching the fundamental skills of bat-and-ball sports. The program, available in English, Spanish and Portuguese, also includes a literacy component focusing on character development and teaching traits such as leadership, teamwork and responsibility. Fun At Bat is part of the PLAY BALL initiative (www.PlayBall.org) - the sport's largest collective effort to encourage young people to participate in baseball- or softball-related activities, including formal and casual forms of play. Since the initiative's launch in 2015, the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) has reported a 55% increase in casual baseball participation in the United States.
"The interest of baseball and softball within Brazil is a great growth opportunity for our sport," said Tony Reagins, Executive Vice President of Baseball & Softball Development, Major League Baseball. "With Fun At Bat delivered in an academic environment, the program gives kids a chance to be closely engaged with the game while also learning about developing positive leadership and teamwork characteristics. We appreciate the partnership we have with USA Baseball as we introduce kids in Brazil to the sport at its most basic levels, which we believe will be the beginning of a lifelong passion for baseball and softball."
"We are excited to expand the Fun At Bat program to the students and teachers in Brazil," said USA Baseball Executive Director and CEO Paul Seiler. "The program continues to serve as a fun, safe environment for students to learn the sport in countries all across the globe and we look forward to continuing to work with Major League Baseball and the Brazilian Baseball & Softball Federation to bring the program to more schools throughout Brazil."
The expansion of Fun At Bat to Brazil is MLB's latest efforts to grow the game among young people throughout the world. Specifically in Brazil, in 2019 and 2020, MLB has held PLAY BALL events in multiple cities throughout the country, which is a continuation of youth-focused programs held throughout the years by MLB.
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2020PitchSmartCompliant_Web

MLB, USA Baseball Recognize Pitch Smart Compliant Organizations for 2020

Baseball New Zealand becomes the first international baseball federation to join USA Baseball as Pitch Smart compliant
January 29, 2020
DURHAM, N.C. - Major League Baseball and USA Baseball recognized on Wednesday the amateur and youth organizations that have fully adopted the Pitch Smart Compliance Program's guidelines and principles for the 2020 season. The updated compliance program includes the addition of Baseball New Zealand, the first international baseball federation to
DURHAM, N.C. - Major League Baseball and USA Baseball recognized on Wednesday the amateur and youth organizations that have fully adopted the Pitch Smart Compliance Program's guidelines and principles for the 2020 season. The updated compliance program includes the addition of Baseball New Zealand, the first international baseball federation to join USA Baseball in adopting the Pitch Smart program. In total, 28 international, national and regional organizations are fully compliant in 2020.
Pitch Smart is a joint initiative between Major League Baseball and USA Baseball that provides safe pitching practices and guidelines to help reduce the risk of arm injuries in amateur players. The program includes a growing number of resources on its home site at PitchSmart.org. It is further supported by a free online educational course available at USA Baseball's Sport Development website at SportDev.org that is hosted by Hall of Fame pitcher John Smoltz.
"Major League Baseball is pleased with the continued growth of Pitch Smart, which has effectively educated leagues, coaches, parents and players on the importance of arm health & safety on the mound," said Chris Marinak, Executive Vice President of Strategy, Technology & Innovation, Major League Baseball. "The international expansion to Baseball New Zealand is a significant development as we look to make Pitch Smart guidelines the standard throughout amateur baseball around the world."
"Baseball New Zealand is fully committed in implementing and enforcing the USA Pitch Smart guidlines across all Baseball New Zealand competitions," said John Fellet, Baseball New Zealand's CEO. "As a rapidly developing baseball country it is vital that we look after and care for our young Kiwi arms. The Pitch Smart educational guidlines and educational platforms will help to educate both players and coaches around the dangers associated with overuse injuries. To further grow baseball within New Zealand and become competitive on the world stage we must develop both our pitchers and catchers throughout the country, which cannot be done without healthy arms."
Baseball New Zealand joins 27 international, national and regional organizations who were also fully compliant with the Pitch Smart program in 2019. Full Pitch Smart compliance represents the highest level of commitment to the program and is defined by the incorporation of Pitch Smart guidelines pertaining to pitch counts and rest periods across all competitions, as well as supporting Pitch Smart educational efforts across all platforms.
Full Compliant Organizations (International, National and Regional):
  • American Amateur Baseball Congress (AABC)
  • American Legion Baseball
  • Atlantic Collegiate Baseball League
  • Baseball Factory
  • Baseball New Zealand
  • Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League
  • California Collegiate League
  • Cape Cod Baseball League
  • Coastal Plain League
  • Dixie Baseball Boys & Majors
  • Dixie Youth Baseball Inc.
  • East Coast Pro Showcase
  • Florida Collegiate Summer League
  • Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League
  • Hamptons Collegiate Baseball League
  • IMG Academy
  • Little League Baseball ®
  • National Amateur Baseball Federation (NABF)
  • National Youth Baseball Championships
  • New England Collegiate Baseball League
  • New York Collegiate Baseball League
  • PONY Baseball
  • Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI)
  • Southern Collegiate Baseball League
  • Sunbelt Baseball League
  • USA Baseball
  • Valley Baseball League
  • Wilson Premier Baseball

In addition to the Full Compliant organizations, Major League Baseball and USA Baseball also recognize organizations that are Select Compliant and Educational Supporters. Select Compliance of the Pitch Smart program is defined by the implementation of Pitch Smart guidelines pertaining to pitch counts and rest periods across select competitions, supporting Pitch Smart educational efforts across all platforms, and a plan to progress towards the adoption of all standards of full compliance in coming years.
The final level of Pitch Smart compliance, Educational Supporters, includes organizations that agree with the philosophies of the Pitch Smart program, support Pitch Smart educational efforts across all platforms, and will work towards select and full program compliance upon organizational review.
"Pitch Smart and its educational efforts continue to be a major initiative for USA Baseball as we continue our governance within the amateur game," said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball's Executive Director/CEO. "The support of the organizations who have adopted and implement this program is paramount to the overall health and safety of our athletes and their futures."
Select Compliant Organizations (International, National and Regional):
  • Babe Ruth League
  • Baseball Heaven
  • Game Day USA
  • NCTB Baseball
  • Perfect Game
  • Prep Baseball Report
  • USSSA

Educational Supporters (International, National and Regional):
  • AAU Baseball
  • National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS)
  • Ripken Baseball

Ninety-two additional state and local organizations have also been recognized as Full Compliant, Select Compliant or Educational Supporter organizations for 2020, and USA Baseball will continue to collaborate with all organizations on their Pitch Smart progress throughout the season.
For a complete list of all full compliant organizations, select compliant organizations and educational supporters, as well as more information about Pitch Smart and an application for inclusion in the compliance program, visit PitchSmart.org.
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FunAtBat_UK_Article

"Fun At Bat" To Be Implemented in Greater London Schools As Introductory Baseball And Softball Program For U.K. Students Through 2021

Thousands of Children Will Have Access to the Bat-and-Ball Program, Which Currently Reaches More Than Three Million Students in the United States, Puerto Rico and Mexico
June 26, 2019
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - Major League Baseball, USA Baseball and BaseballSoftballUK today announced that "Fun At Bat" (www.funatbat.org), the introductory bat-and-ball program designed for use in school physical education classes, will now be available to primary school students in Greater London and surrounding areas through 2021. The free program, which
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - Major League Baseball, USA Baseball and BaseballSoftballUK today announced that "Fun At Bat" (www.funatbat.org), the introductory bat-and-ball program designed for use in school physical education classes, will now be available to primary school students in Greater London and surrounding areas through 2021. The free program, which is currently reaching more than three million children in all 50 United States, Washington D.C., Puerto Rico and Mexico, will be administered by BaseballSoftballUK (BSUK), the development agency for the two sports in Britain, along with official schools delivery partner Premier Education Group. 
The initial launch of Fun At Bat in London will serve thousands of children in 50 schools in London, Birmingham and Southeast England. However, MLB's Europe Office and BSUK will look to grow the access to the program in the following years. Franklin Sports, a long-time MLB and USA Baseball partner, has created custom Fun At Bat Baseball equipment to help activate this program since its inception in 2016. 
A joint MLB and USA Baseball youth program, Fun At Bat promotes fun and active lifestyles for children, while also teaching the fundamental skills of bat-and-ball sports. The program, available in both English and Spanish, also includes a literacy component focusing on character development and teaching traits such as leadership, teamwork and responsibility. Fun At Bat is part of the PLAY BALL initiative (www.PlayBall.org) - the sport's largest collective effort to encourage young people to participate in baseball- or softball-related activities, including formal and casual forms of play. Since the initiative's launch in 2015, the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) has reported a 52.8 percent increase in casual baseball participation in the United States.
"Major League Baseball is thrilled to bring Fun At Bat to Greater London, which will serve as a lasting legacy of the London Series," said Tony Reagins, Executive Vice President of Baseball & Softball Development, MLB. "The potential impact of this program is significant, especially as we continue to foster a connection to our sport and make baseball, as well as softball, a part of the sports culture in the United Kingdom." 
"We are excited to partner with BaseballSoftballUK to deliver the Fun At Bat program to students of greater London," said Rick Riccobono, USA Baseball's Chief Development Officer. "This initiative is not only a great way to introduce and teach the sport of baseball to students, it also serves as a platform to teach lifelong character development skills that will stay with students well beyond the program. We look forward to continuing to work with BaseballSoftballUK and additional national baseball federations as we continue to promote the sport of baseball around the world."
"We are thrilled to welcome Fun At Bat to the UK, where we believe the programme will be a crucial addition for the development of baseball and softball," remarked John Boyd, CEO of BaseballSoftballUK. "PLAY BALL events have been hosted by many of the world's top baseball-playing countries and the addition of the UK to this list shows the importance of the London Series and its legacy events. We look forward to continued partnership with MLB and USA Baseball as we grow baseball and softball in the UK."
"Premier are delighted to be delivering this exciting programme through our partnership with BaseballSoftballUK into 50 schools," noted Jane Hannah, Premier Education Group's Partnership Manager. "Our fully trained Activity Professionals will provide children with a great first experience of the sport."
Adam Franklin, Vice President at Franklin Sports said: "Franklin Sports is proud to be the Official Equipment Partner of the Fun At Bat program. As long time partners of USA Baseball and Major League Baseball, we are committed to the collective goals of growing youth participation and creating young fans of the sport of baseball."
The expansion of Fun At Bat to London is MLB's latest effort to grow the game among young people throughout the world, particularly in Europe. In addition to the multiple PLAY BALL events held in various parts of the United States as well as in Mexico, Brazil, and Panama, MLB has had a substantive imprint on the youth and amateur levels of the sport throughout the world. 
Over the last three years, the MLB CUP has served nearly 10,000 kids in Japan, Taiwan and Mexico in tournament play. On Sunday, June 23rd, MLB's signature international youth league competition was held for the first time in Europe featuring London-based baseball and softball Little League teams at PLAY BALL PARK in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. The MLB Coach Development Program has been held throughout the world as a means of providing expert instruction to prospective baseball and softball coaches through MLB's Development Team. Additionally, the Elite Development Camp has been held for baseball and softball players throughout Europe, ages 13 to 19, to offer them first-class coaching opportunities. Both programs were held in London in advance of the Mitel & MLB Present London Series 2019.
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USA Baseball Launches Baseball Coaches Certification

The free three-tiered program aims to better serve baseball athletes and communities in the U.S.
June 4, 2019
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the launch of its Baseball Coaches Certification Program on Tuesday. The free three-tiered program is tailored to all members of the baseball coaching community, regardless of age or level of experience, as USA Baseball aims to create a higher standard of coaching education across
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the launch of its Baseball Coaches Certification Program on Tuesday. The free three-tiered program is tailored to all members of the baseball coaching community, regardless of age or level of experience, as USA Baseball aims to create a higher standard of coaching education across the nation in order to better serve its athletes and communities.
"Supporting the baseball coaching community with free resources and access to the brightest minds in our game has been a priority of ours for many years." said Rick Riccobono, USA Baseball's Chief Development Officer. "Better coaches mean better experiences for the millions of children who enjoy our national pastime. Today marks a critical step in providing amateur coaches an enhanced opportunity to develop their own abilities and to join a national movement to improve our sport. We're proud to offer this program and will continue working towards delivering additional certification levels and coaching content in the future."
The certification pathway consists of three ascending levels, "A" Certification, "B" Certification and "C" Certification, all of which contain a series of courses that cover topics such as health and safety, creating a positive team environment, recognizing and responding to misconduct, practice planning, game management and skill-specific development.
USA Baseball has teamed up with some of the biggest names in baseball to present the Baseball Coaches Certification Program, as well as other free educational offerings to the baseball community. Incorporated into the certification pathway are courses hosted by five current Major League Baseball managers in Rocco Baldelli, Mickey Callaway, A.J. Hinch, Joe Maddon and Dave Roberts, as well as Hall of Famers Barry Larkin and John Smoltz, and two-time World Series Champion catcher David Ross, among others.
This program also incorporates the existing USA Baseball Coaches Clinics that are held year-round at facilities nationwide in partnership with the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association and GameChanger. In order to proliferate a culture of continuing education, development and mentorship, these free clinics allow coaches of all experience levels to interact and learn from one another while being guided by veteran coaches. All coaches will be required to attend or host a USA Baseball Coaches Clinic in order to obtain a "C" Certification.
Upon completion of the certification, coaches simultaneously satisfy the training requirements set forth by Senate Bill 534 (SB 534) and also begin the process of becoming Pure Baseball compliant. In November 2018, USA Baseball announced Pure Baseball, a zero-tolerance policy regarding abuse constructed in cooperation with SB 534 and the policies created by the U.S. Center for SafeSport. To concurrently become Pure Baseball compliant, coaches need only submit to and pass a background check, which can be done at SportDev.org through USA Baseball's service provider, JD Palatine.
The certification program was piloted from November 2018-May 2019 and, during that time, over 900 coaches achieved certification.
For more information on the Baseball Coaches Certification Program and to begin the courses required to complete certification, visit SportDev.org/Coach. In addition to this new program, all courses and resources for players, coaches, parents and umpires on SportDev.org are available at no cost to users and aim to provide a positive baseball experience for all.
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USA Baseball, Tyler Collins Honored with Layman Award

The award honors an individual for contributions in fields of Health and Physical Education
May 31, 2019
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball Director of Youth Programs Tyler Collins was honored with the Layman Award at the Philadelphia Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AHPERD) Annual Awards Banquet on April 25, 2019, in recognition of his role in the implementation of the Fun At Bat program
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball Director of Youth Programs Tyler Collins was honored with the Layman Award at the Philadelphia Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AHPERD) Annual Awards Banquet on April 25, 2019, in recognition of his role in the implementation of the Fun At Bat program within the School District of Philadelphia. The award is given annually to an individual who has provided significant contributions to the fields of Health and Physical Education, who are not members of the profession. 
Collins oversees the Fun At Bat initiative, an entry-level bat-and-ball program with support by Major League Baseball and USA Baseball for kids with an emphasis on character development, functional movement, active play and fun. The initiative stems from meticulous research on introductory youth sport programs and is free for schools and school districts to adopt.
"Tyler Collins, through USA Baseball, has presented the students of the School District of Philadelphia with the unique opportunity to access and experience the game of baseball through the Fun At Bat program," said School District of Philadelphia Director of Health, Safety and Physical Education, Nancy Nayowith. "Through their generous support and training, many schools now have sustainable programming to grow the game.
"We are appreciative of our partnership with USA Baseball and look forward to expanding its reach in our schools. Congratulations to Tyler Collins for receiving the Layman Award, and many thanks for his persistence and dedication on behalf of our students."
Collins' work growing and expanding USA Baseball's Fun At Bat program earned him the distinction. He presented the program to the Health and Physical Education (HPE) teachers in the Philadelphia School District during a professional development course. All teachers in attendance received hands-on instruction, curricula and equipment for use in continuing the program in their schools.
"It is a great honor to receive the Layman Award from PAHPERD," Collins said. "The School District of Philadelphia has been a great partner and we look forward to continuing to provide the physical education teachers with the resources they need to successfully teach students the game of baseball."
Collins first joined USA Baseball in January 2017 and, under his guidance, Fun At Bat has experienced tremendous growth, currently reaching more than one million children in all 50 states, nearly 150,000 students in Puerto Rico and more than one million elementary school students throughout Mexico as of June 2019.
"As a teacher in a large urban district like Philadelphia, supplies are often scarce. It is such a blessing to have an organization like USA Baseball be willing to provide our teachers with meaningful professional development and equipment," said President of the Philadelphia AHPERD and Patterson Elementary School Health and PE Teacher, Erika Buscaglia. "Tyler's presentation was amazing and energetic! He provided us with activities we could immediately incorporate into our HPE programs."
For more information on Fun At Bat and other joint Major League Baseball and USA Baseball initiatives, visit SportDev.org.
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"Fun At Bat," An Introductory & Character Building and Softball Program, To Be Implemented In Schools Throughout Mexico

More Than One Million Mexican Children Will Have Access to the Bat-and-Ball Program, Which Currently Reaches Students in the United States and Puerto Rico
May 22, 2019
EL PROGRAMA "FUN AT BAT" SE IMPLEMENTARÁ COMO PARTE DEL CURRÍCULO DE EDUCACIÓN FÍSICA EN ESCUELAS EN MEXICO PRIMARIAS DE PUERTO RICOMEXICO CITY, MEXICO - Major League Baseball and USA Baseball today announced that "Fun At Bat" (www.funatbat.org), the introductory and character building bat-and-ball program designed for use in physical
EL PROGRAMA "FUN AT BAT" SE IMPLEMENTARÁ COMO PARTE DEL CURRÍCULO DE EDUCACIÓN FÍSICA EN ESCUELAS EN MEXICO PRIMARIAS DE PUERTO RICO
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - Major League Baseball and USA Baseball today announced that "Fun At Bat" (www.funatbat.org), the introductory and character building bat-and-ball program designed for use in physical education (P.E.) classes, will now be available to elementary school students throughout Mexico. The free program, which is currently reaching more than one million children in all 50 states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico, will be administered in Mexico by the Presidential Office for Baseball Development and Promotion in Mexico (PROBEIS), an initiative commissioned by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to develop and promote baseball in the country, with support from both MLB and USA Baseball.
The Mexico Fun At Bat program will serve more than 1.3 million students throughout the country. Franklin Sports, a long-time MLB and USA Baseball partner, has created custom Fun At Bat Baseball equipment to help activate this program since its inception in 2016.
A joint MLB and USA Baseball youth program, Fun At Bat promotes fun and active lifestyles for children, while also teaching the fundamental skills of bat-and-ball sports. The program, available in both English and Spanish, also includes a literacy component focusing on character development and teaching traits such as leadership, teamwork and responsibility. Fun At Bat is part of the PLAY BALL initiative (www.PlayBall.org) - the sport's largest collective effort to encourage young people to participate in baseball- or softball-related activities, including formal and casual forms of play. Since the initiative's launch in 2015, the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) has reported a 52.8 percent increase in casual baseball participation in the United States.
"Baseball's future in Mexico is a bright one, and this collaborative effort between MLB, USA Baseball and PROBEIS will contribute greatly toward that end," said Tony Reagins, Executive Vice President of Baseball & Softball Development, Major League Baseball. "In line with our larger PLAY BALL initiative, Fun At Bat will give children in Mexico the opportunity to discover the game at its most basic levels, which we believe will be the beginning of a lifelong passion for baseball." 
"We are thrilled to have the opportunity to deliver this program to students across Mexico," said Rick Riccobono, USA Baseball's Chief Development Officer. "Fun At Bat is the fastest growing bat-and-ball program in the world. With its comprehensive curriculum and fun-first approach, it is the ideal way to introduce kids from across the globe to our great game."
"We couldn't be more thrilled about this historic opportunity to formally implement baseball in public grammar schools in Mexico as part of our strategy to develop and promote the sport, as instructed by President Lopez Obrador," said Edgar Gonzalez, Director of PROBEIS. "Teachers are the backbone of our social development and it is exciting to know they are participating in this amazing program designed exclusively for the purpose of teaching fundamental principles to children. Naturally, we are looking forward to implementing additional projects jointly with USA Baseball and Major League Baseball to continue furthering mission."
Adam Franklin, Vice President at Franklin Sports said: "Franklin Sports is proud to be the Official Equipment Partner of the Fun At Bat program. As long time partners of USA Baseball and Major League Baseball, we are committed to the collective goals of growing youth participation and creating young fans of the sport of baseball."
The expansion of Fun At Bat to Mexico is MLB's latest efforts to grow the game among young people throughout the world. In addition to the multiple PLAY BALL events held in various parts of the United States as well as in Mexico, Brazil, and Panama, MLB has had a substantive imprint on the youth & amateur levels of the sport throughout the world. Over the last three years, the MLB CUP, MLB's signature international youth league competition, has served nearly 10,000 kids in Japan, Taiwan and Mexico in tournament play.
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Howard, Jeter, Jones and Larkin Named Captains of the MLB-USA Baseball PDP League

April 4, 2019
DURHAM, N.C. - Ryan Howard. Derek Jeter. Chipper Jones. Barry Larkin - all names synonymous with greatness, legendary performances and World Series Championships. In the summer of 2019, they will serve as team captains of the 2019 Prospect Development Pipeline (PDP) League taking place at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida.
DURHAM, N.C. - Ryan Howard. Derek Jeter. Chipper Jones. Barry Larkin - all names synonymous with greatness, legendary performances and World Series Championships. In the summer of 2019, they will serve as team captains of the 2019 Prospect Development Pipeline (PDP) League taking place at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. Eighty of the top 2020 MLB Draft eligible high school prospects from around the United States who were invited to participate in the inaugural season of the PDP League will compete on teams named after Howard, Jeter, Jones and Larkin, all of whom are also USA Baseball alumni.
PDP League team captains will be on-site at different points throughout the duration of the League to share their career stories with the players in attendance. The PDP League, scheduled for June 13th-July 4th, will provide the participating athletes with an unprecedented experience, including weekly practices and competitive gameplay, individualized instruction from MLB Club representatives serving as on-field coaches, evaluations using modern technologies tailoring individualized development curriculums for each player, as well as off-field leadership, skill-building, and educational seminars. Athletes will also have access to the Gatorade Sports Science Institute, located on the campus of IMG Academy and one of only three such facilities in the world. 
The PDP League will serve as a primary identification opportunity for the USA Baseball 18U National Team, slated to compete in the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) U-18 Baseball World Cup in Busan, South Korea in early September. Additionally, the League will serve as a feeder for a new MLB All-Star High School Prospect Game for the best high school baseball players, taking place in Cleveland as part of MLB's All-Star Week festivities in July.
The daily itinerary, skill-building, and gameplay responsibilities of the PDP League will fall on its Coordinators and Coaching Staffs, which includes former and current players as well as coaches on various levels of the game (Major League, Minor League & Collegiate). The PDP League staff will include:
PDP League Captains
Ryan Howard
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2005 N.L. Rookie of the Year, 2006 N.L. MVP, 2008 World Series Champion, 3x MLB All-Star; 2000 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team member
Derek Jeter
- CEO & Owner, Miami Marlins
- 5x World Series Champion, 1996 A.L. Rookie of the Year, 2000 World Series MVP, 14x MLB All-Star; 2006 and 2009 Team USA WBC member
Chipper Jones
- Baseball Hall of Famer, 1995 World Series Champion, 1999 N.L. MVP, 8x MLB All-Star; 2006 and 2009 Team USA WBC member
Barry Larkin
- Baseball Hall of Famer, 1990 World Series Champion, 1995 N.L. MVP, 12x MLB All-Star; 1984 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team member and 2009 Team USA WBC Auxiliary Coach
Coordinators
Scott Brosius (Field Coordinator)

- USA Baseball Senior Director, Sport Development
- 3x World Series Champion, 1998 World Series MVP, 1998 MLB All-Star, 11-year MLB veteran, 2013 Division III National Championship Coach; 2-time USA Baseball 18U National Team Manager
Marcel Lachemann (Pitching Coordinator)
- Special Assistant to the GM, Los Angeles Angels
- 3-year MLB veteran, 3-year manager of the California Angels, 11-year MLB assistant coach; 8-time USA Baseball Pitching Coach
Gerald Laird (Catching Coordinator)
- Connecticut Tigers (Single-A, Detroit), Manager
- 2011 World Series Champion, 13-year MLB veteran; 2019 USA Baseball Assistant Coach
Greg Ritchie (Hitting Coordinator)
- George Washington University, Manager
- Selected in the 8th round of the 1986 MLB Draft, 16-year professional coach, 2013 A-10 Coach of the Year; 2-time USA Baseball 18U National Team Assistant Coach
Andy Stankiewicz (Fielding Coordinator)
- Grand Canyon University, Head Coach
- 7-year MLB veteran, 6-year professional manager and assistant coach; 3-time USA Baseball Manager and Assistant Coach
Managers
Joe Brown (SUNY Cortland - Head Baseball Coach)
- 2nd fastest NCAA Division III coach to reach 700 wins (714-185-3, .793 win percentage), the best winning percentage of any active NCAA coach with at least 10 years' experience
- 2015 ABCA and Division III National Coach of the Year, 10x ABCA New York Region Coach of the Year, 6x SUNYAC Coach of the Year, 1988 NCAA Division III Champion as a student-athlete
Geoff Loomis (University of Portland - Head Baseball Coach)
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University of Portland Hall of Famer, 2x NCAA Baseball Championship appearances managing Pacific Lutheran University, selected in the 31st round of the 1992 MLB Draft (OAK)
Casey Powell (Former Head and Assistant Collegiate Baseball Coach)
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Former head coach of Whitman College and assistant at Seattle University and Linfield College, 1996 Northwest Conference Player of the Year
Willie Romay (Former USA Baseball Coach; Amateur Scout - Boston Red Sox)
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7-year MLB amateur scout, 14-year scout with MLB Scouting Bureau, drafted in the 5th round of the 1988 MLB Draft (SEA); 2x USA Baseball Assistant Coach
Pitching Coaches
Garvin Alston (Former MLB Pitching Coach)
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Former pitching coach in OAK, AZ, and MIN organizations, made MLB debut in 1996 with Colorado Rockies, drafted in the 10th round of the 1992 MLB Draft (COL)
Alan Embree (16-year MLB veteran pitcher)
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2004 World Series Champion, 16-year MLB career with 10 organizations, amassing 39 wins and 25 saves across almost 900 appearances
Andy Pettitte (18-year MLB veteran pitcher)
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5x World Series Champion, 3x MLB All-Star, 2001 ALCS MVP, amassed 256 wins over 18 year career, including 19 postseason and 5 World Series wins
Scott Radinski (11-year MLB veteran pitcher)
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11-year MLB career with 4 organizations, amassing 42 wins and 52 saves across over 550 appearances; 2005 USA Baseball Professional National Team Pitching Coach
Strength and Conditioning Coordinator
Perry Castellano (18-year Professional Strength and Conditioning Coach) 
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2010 MLB Strength Coach of the Year, 2014 American League All-Star Strength Coach, 12-year MLB Strength Coach and Director for the Minnesota Twins from 2006-2018
The PDP League also will be supported by NCAA and high school baseball coaches as well as current/former MLB alumni and personnel, including the following: Harold Reynolds, analyst for MLB Network (12-year MLB veteran, 3x Gold Glove winner, 2x MLB All Star); Lance Berkman (15-year MLB veteran, 2011 World Series champion, 6x MLB All-Star, 366 career home runs); and LaTroy Hawkins (21-year MLB veteran, over 1,000 MLB appearances including 75 wins and 127 saves). Additional names supporting the event will be announced at a later date. 
In addition to the League Captains/Managers/Coaches/Coordinators, there also will be a number of guest speakers brought in to enhance the personal growth and development of participating athletes, along with providing unparalleled perspective and experience in areas of character, leadership, team-building, and managing success. Two groups of note that will have an opportunity to bring their curriculums to the athletes include Echelon Front and Game On Nation. 
Echelon Front offers unmatched solutions in leadership, strategy, innovation, and team building developed and proven in combat. Founded by former Navy Seals Jocko Willink and Leif Babin, Echelon Front offers unique, personalized services designed to get teams executing at the highest level possible.
One of the most respected firms in communication, leadership, resiliency, and teambuilding training, Game On Nation uses groundbreaking, game-based training techniques to harnesses the power of Mystery, Incentive, Laughter, and Empowerment to create immediate improvement that teams can see, feel, and measure. Game On's innovative curriculum inspires participants to not only CARE about their training goals, but to remember and apply these interactive techniques to continuously improve.
"The experience that the PDP League will offer athletes is unparalleled within our industry," said Morgan Sword, MLB's Senior Vice President, League Economics & Operations. "This coaching staff will help these athletes to prepare themselves for careers in professional baseball. We look forward to seeing them in the big leagues soon." 
"I could not be more excited about this year's inaugural PDP League," said Scott Brosius, USA Baseball's Senior Director of Player Development. "We've taken significant strides toward our goal of creating a program that puts athlete development at the forefront of the amateur baseball landscape. Our players will have the opportunity to learn from some of the finest athletes to have played the game and then apply those lessons alongside the best players in the country on a daily basis. Ultimately, those who graduate this program will be prepared to be leaders in the clubhouse and in life." 
"The creation and implementation of the PDP League is a tremendous step forward for USA Baseball and Major League Baseball in the overall athlete development experience," said Frank Jagoda, USA Baseball's 18U National Team Program Director. "Not only will this league aide in the growth and development of the athletes who will take part in it, but also for game of baseball as well. Each athlete is given a truly invaluable opportunity to learn and compete against the best baseball players in the country while also competing for a spot to represent the United States as a member of the USA Baseball 18U National Team on the international stage."
As a part of the player experience, all athletes will receive a tablet for the duration of the league as the dedicated vehicle for athlete communication, scheduling, daily pushing of data, and personal video review, amongst other functionalities. This platform will create another opportunity to improve player development throughout the league, while reinforcing player accountability and offering opportunities to maximize not only the League experience, but also the athlete's continued growth both on and off of the field. 
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'Fun At Bat' Program to Be Implemented by All Elementary Schools in Puerto Rico

Nearly 90,000 students will have access to the entry-level "Bat-and-Ball" program, which Is currently reaching more than one million students in all 50 states & Washington D.C.
March 6, 2019
SALINAS, PUERTO RICO - Major League Baseball and USA Baseball today announced that "Fun At Bat" (www.funatbat.org), the bat-and-ball program designed for use in elementary school physical education (P.E.) classes throughout the United States, will now be available to all elementary school students in Puerto Rico. The program, which is currently
SALINAS, PUERTO RICO - Major League Baseball and USA Baseball today announced that "Fun At Bat" (www.funatbat.org), the bat-and-ball program designed for use in elementary school physical education (P.E.) classes throughout the United States, will now be available to all elementary school students in Puerto Rico. The program, which is currently reaching more than one million children in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., will be administered by the Puerto Rico Department of Education to serve nearly 90,000 young students throughout the island. Long time MLB and USA Baseball partner, Franklin Sports, has created custom Fun At Bat Baseball equipment to help activate this program since its inception in 2016. Baseball Hall of Famer and MLB special consultant in Puerto Rico Roberto Alomar as well as the Puerto Rico Baseball Federation are supporting the initiative. 
A joint MLB and USA Baseball youth program, Fun At Bat promotes fun and active lifestyles for children, while also teaching the fundamental skills of bat-and-ball sports. The program, available in English and Spanish, also includes a literacy component focusing on character development and teaching traits such as leadership, teamwork and fair play. Fun At Bat is part of the PLAY BALL initiative (www.PlayBall.org) - the sport's largest collective effort to encourage young people to participate in baseball- or softball-related activities, including formal and casual forms of play. Since its launch in 2015, the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) has reported a 52.8 percent increase in casual baseball participation. 
"Puerto Rico has proven to be one of our sport's greatest sources of talent and passion over the years, and now we are excited to bolster both the expansion of this grassroots 'Fun At Bat' initiative to the Island," said Tony Reagins, Executive Vice President of Baseball & Softball Development, Major League Baseball. "One of our main goals here at Major League Baseball is to make baseball and softball as accessible as possible. We are confident that the presence of this energetic and introductory program will further ensure that youth from Puerto Rico will have direct and regular opportunities to play the game." 
"We are thrilled to have the opportunity to deliver this program to students across Puerto Rico," said Rick Riccobono, USA Baseball's Chief Development Officer. "Fun At Bat is the fastest growing bat-and-ball program in the world. With its comprehensive curriculum and fun-first approach, it is the ideal way to be introducing kids and new participants to our great game."
Julia Keleher, the Secretary of the Puerto Rico Department of Education said: "We thank USA Baseball and MLB for this partnership with the Department on an initiative that seeks to expose our children to sports through Fun At Bat. You can count on our commitment and collaboration, including the support of our excellent physical education teachers, to ensure this is a stimulating and enriching experience for our children. We are very pleased with the support USA Baseball and MLB has shown the Department and we know that we will continue to partner together on projects for the benefit of Puerto Rico's students".
Alomar said: "I'm proud to partner with Major League Baseball, USA Baseball, and the Department of Education in bringing the Fun At Bat program to the students of Puerto Rico. It's an exciting initiative that will help grow the game of baseball by making it more accessible to the youth on the island."
The expansion of Fun At Bat to Puerto Rico is just one of MLB's latest efforts to provide baseball-centered education tools to young students across the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Some of the educational initiatives and programs operated, in part, by MLB include: (a)"Breaking Barriers: In Sports, In Life," which is co-administered with daughter of Jackie Robinson and MLB Educational Consultant Sharon Robinson and Scholastic, a bilingual program highlighted by an essay contest encouraging students to describe personal barriers they have overcome through the example of Jackie Robinson; (b) the partnership with Discovery Education to add dynamic new baseball-themed content to Science Techbooks with the goal of fueling deeper student engagement in science and STEM; and (c) the free baseball-themed education course the "Summer Slugger" aimed at preventing students from losing math and literacy skills during the summer break from school, a result of MLB's and Everfi's joint efforts. 
Additionally, MLB has teamed up with ESPN on "Shred Hate," a multi-faceted bullying prevention program that seeks to eliminate bullying by encouraging kids to choose kindness. As part of the program, No Bully, a San Francisco-based nonprofit that trains and gives schools the tools to activate student compassion as a method for eradicating bullying and cyberbullying, provides innovative, bullying prevention curriculum, and works directly with local school districts and cooperating schools. Shred Hate was launched with the X Games in 2017, and schools that have gone through the curriculum last year were able to reduce instances of bullying by 94%. 
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USA Baseball Launches Pure Baseball

Pure Baseball is a zero-tolerance policy regarding abuse that ensures the well-being of athletes
November 15, 2018
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball today announced the launch of Pure Baseball. Pure Baseball is the organization's zero-tolerance policy regarding abuse - inclusive of emotional, physical and sexual misconduct - within the sport of baseball across the United States to ensure the overall well-being of its minor athletes. Pursuant to the guidelines presented
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball today announced the launch of Pure Baseball. Pure Baseball is the organization's zero-tolerance policy regarding abuse - inclusive of emotional, physical and sexual misconduct - within the sport of baseball across the United States to ensure the overall well-being of its minor athletes. 
Pursuant to the guidelines presented in Senate Bill 534 (SB 534) and in cooperation with the U.S. Center for SafeSport, the Pure Baseball initiative and its numerous resources will impact USA Baseball, its national team athletes and event participants, in addition to its national member organizations, local affiliate organizations and all other unaffiliated baseball organizations in the amateur baseball landscape.
"The launch of Pure Baseball is a significant venture by USA Baseball to provide a safe, competitive environment for all athletes playing baseball in the United States," said USA Baseball Executive Director/CEO Paul Seiler. "There is nothing more important than the safety of our minor athletes and we are committed to doing our part to protect the future athletes and fans of our game."
Pure Baseball is comprised of four components: reporting, background checks, education and training, and minor athlete safety policies. The policies and procedures created by USA Baseball as part of this program model those set forth by the U.S. Center for SafeSport, and also contain supplementary guidelines to further safeguard minor athletes and their interactions with adults, and account for baseball-specific situations that may occur.
In a concerted effort to protect all minor athletes playing baseball in leagues and events across the country, USA Baseball has made all Pure Baseball resources available for consumption on PureBaseball.org and SportDev.org. In doing so, the organization has mitigated the procedural impact on amateur baseball organizations set forth by the requirements of SB 534. Organizations large and small are now able to fulfill all background checks, education and training, and reporting requirements through USA Baseball even if their organization cannot support the bandwidth and infrastructure needed for compliance. 
"It is our duty as the National Governing Body of baseball for the United States to provide the resources to those who need them," continued Seiler. "In order to achieve this, USA Baseball is proud to provide the tools needed to fulfill the requirements set forth by Senate Bill 534 to our constituents so that we can collectively protect our athletes from abuse."
Two abuse awareness courses hosted by two-time World Series champion David Ross have been launched on USA Baseball's education platform to accompany the launch of this initiative.  Abuse Awareness for Adults and Abuse Awareness for Minors satisfy the education and training requirements set forth by SB 534 for the entirety of the amateur baseball community. 
In addition, as part of the Pure Baseball launch, USA Baseball and USA Softball have partnered together in order to protect all male and female athletes who share the love of bat-and-ball sports. Both national governing bodies will independently manage the reporting of abuse in its respective sport; however, they will cooperatively publish and enforce a list of adult individuals who are suspended or banned from participation in baseball and softball in the United States. 
"USA Softball is honored to join forces with USA Baseball in our commitment to athlete safety," said Craig Cress, Executive Director at USA Softball. "Our national governing bodies have been diligent in our individual efforts to protect our athletes and I am hopeful that together we will reach new heights in this endeavor." 
Lastly, in an effort to diminish the exposure of minor athletes to dangerous individuals, SB 534 requires that all adults working with minor athletes undergo a background check. In accordance with that, as part of the Pure Baseball program, all individuals working within the amateur baseball landscape are able to submit a background check application at SportDev.org through USA Baseball's service provider, JD Palatine. 
Visit PureBaseball.org or email [email protected] for more information on the Pure Baseball initiative and its minor athlete safety policies. To meet the requirements of SB 534 by submitting a background check application, to report abuse, to check the suspended and banned individual list, or to complete the abuse awareness courses, visit SportDev.org.
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USA Baseball Develops Coaching Manual for High School Baseball Programs

The manual aims to assist coaches in providing a positive, development-based experience to its student-athletes
October 10, 2018
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced on Wednesday the development of its High School Baseball Program Manual. It aims to support the thousands of dedicated high school baseball coaches around the country by providing a positive, development-based experience to its student-athletes. The manual provides coaches a fundamental framework to build

DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced on Wednesday the development of its High School Baseball Program Manual. It aims to support the thousands of dedicated high school baseball coaches around the country by providing a positive, development-based experience to its student-athletes.

The manual provides coaches a fundamental framework to build an athlete-focused culture within their programs and is suited for both high schools with longstanding traditions of on-field excellence, as well as for schools and coaches that are building a program from the ground up. Importantly, the manual also provides a clear direction for player growth off the baseball field with respect to personal development and support for its players' participation in multiple sports.

The High School Baseball Program Manual is available to the public at no charge at www.hsbaseballmanual.com and on the USA Baseball Online Education Center, usabaseball.education.

"To the tens of thousands of coaches who support the half a million student-athletes competing at the high school level, thank you. We recognize your selfless commitment to your players, and through works like this manual we aim to support your efforts in enriching your players lives," said Rick Riccobono, USA Baseball's Chief Development Officer. "USA Baseball has never been more committed to the well-being of the high school baseball community. Through this unique resource, coaches old and new will gain insights into how to optimize their high school baseball program. With an athlete-first approach, this manual's teachings will continue to position baseball as an athletic option that supports a comprehensive student-athlete experience within a healthy and positive sporting environment."

This initiative continues USA Baseball's reach into the amateur baseball landscape and specifically reinforces its commitment to the proliferation of prep baseball in the United States. The manual boosts the high school baseball experience and allows for the consistent development for any athlete, regardless of their skill level or the school for which they compete.

Key concepts from the High School Baseball Program Manual include:
- Importance of underscoring academic goals of the athletes and school
- Practice plan directives that enable maximum engagement, movement and physical activity
- Benefits of supporting athlete participation in multiple sports
- Management tools for interpersonal relationships within a baseball program, including conflict resolution techniques
- Keys to building a positive culture that transcends the student-athlete experience
- Best practices concerning a player's health and safety
- Keeping the game of baseball fun
"I think the High School Baseball Program Manual is by far the most comprehensive publication that I have ever seen. The attention to the specific needs of the player from understanding multi-sport athletes to nutrition and rest considerations is spot on. You can sense the intentional compassion in this document. It should be considered mandatory reading for any new baseball coach and a refresher for experienced coaches," said Elliot Hopkins, Director of Sports, Sanctioning and Student Services for the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS). "This manual along with the many other USA Baseball programs and resources is indicative of the support and commitment by USA Baseball to the interscholastic game. This is a quality manual that will assist anyone who is interested in maximizing practice time and improving their training sessions.
"We are so appreciative of USA Baseball for this work, but more importantly for a wonderful collaborative partnership for over a decade. We both value young people playing baseball and it is always good to share that excitement and drive with a like-minded organization. We are thrilled that they are our national governing body and represents the United States so proudly in international and domestic competitions."
For more information on the High School Baseball Program Manual, and other similar educational resources produced by USA Baseball, such as the Mobile Coach App, Long-Term Athlete Development Plan (LTAD) and others, visit usabaseball.education. All resources produced by USA Baseball are provided free of charge to the public.

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Kyle Lubrano Appointed USA Baseball Senior Director of Safesport and Compliance

Lubrano to serve as organization's liaison with the U.S. Center for SafeSport
August 7, 2018
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the appointment of Kyle Lubrano as its Senior Director of SafeSport and Compliance on Tuesday. In this role, Lubrano will oversee all elements of the organization's SafeSport-related policies and serve as the primary liaison with the U.S. Center for SafeSport.Lubrano will work in coordination
DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the appointment of Kyle Lubrano as its Senior Director of SafeSport and Compliance on Tuesday. In this role, Lubrano will oversee all elements of the organization's SafeSport-related policies and serve as the primary liaison with the U.S. Center for SafeSport.
Lubrano will work in coordination with the Sport Development Department and the national team program directors to implement curriculum, training and additional outreach materials as it relates to SafeSport. In addition to leading the organization's efforts to promote a safe, healthy training environment for all national team program participants, she will oversee compliance and enforcement of applicable USA Baseball rules, policies and provisions in the greater amateur baseball community, as well as contributing to its emerging educational ventures.
"Kyle has a proven track record of success with the development and implementation of new initiatives within amateur sports - specifically Team USA - and we are confident she will be a tremendous asset to our organization," said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball's Executive Director and CEO. "With the appointment of the Senior Director of SafeSport and Compliance position, USA Baseball furthers its commitment to leading the amateur baseball landscape with regards to the U.S. Center for SafeSport and the protection and well-being of our athletes."
Lubrano brings eight years of experience working with Team USA to her role at USA Baseball. Prior to joining the organization, she worked with both US Lacrosse and USA Field Hockey where she developed and delivered certification programs and educational resources, and led growth initiatives, respectively. She also spent time working with Major League Soccer's DC United.
Before first joining USA Baseball as a Senior Director of Sport Development in May of 2018, she served as the Multisport Account Manager at Soccer.com and is currently part of a United States Olympic Committee (USOC) group that develops scalable athlete development models for National Governing Bodies.
The U.S. Center for SafeSport is an independent nonprofit committed to ending all forms of abuse in sport. This includes bullying, harassment, hazing, physical abuse, emotional abuse, and sexual misconduct and abuse. The USOC has entrusted the Center with the authority to respond to reports of sexual misconduct with the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movements.
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GameChanger by Dick's Sporting Goods Partners with USA Baseball and the ABCA on ACE Community Clinics

June 27, 2018
PITTSBURGH - DICK'S Sporting Goods (NYSE: DKS) today announced GameChanger, the leading scorekeeping and team management app for youth and high school baseball and softball teams, has been named the exclusive partner of Baseball ACE Community Clinics.In collaboration with USA Baseball and the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), ACE Community
PITTSBURGH - DICK'S Sporting Goods (NYSE: DKS) today announced GameChanger, the leading scorekeeping and team management app for youth and high school baseball and softball teams, has been named the exclusive partner of Baseball ACE Community Clinics.
In collaboration with USA Baseball and the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), ACE Community Clinics are being held at facilities nationwide and providing coaches with the opportunity to refine their skills and network with others in their community. GameChanger will provide more than 200,000 teams with access to the Clinics to ensure these valuable skills are shared with as many coaches, parents and sports enthusiasts as possible.
"Our support of ACE Community Clinics aligns with our company mission to elevate the youth sports experience," said Ted Sullivan, CEO and founder of GameChanger. "We are thrilled to partner with two of the most respected brands in amateur baseball - USA Baseball and ABCA - and collectively invest in the future of the game."
GameChanger also partnered with USA Baseball in 2015 to develop the first certified Pitch Smart app for the Pitch Smart Initiative, which recommends pitching guidelines in order to avoid arm overuse and injuries.
"Having GameChanger as a partner of the ACE Community Clinics significantly strengthens our reach and footprint for this educational initiative," said Rick Riccobono chief development officer at USA Baseball. "We have always known GameChanger to be a champion for the health of our sport; we're excited for their support as we continue expanding our coaching education platform."
First announced earlier this year by A.J. Hinch, manager of the 2017 World Series Champion Houston Astros, the ACE Community Clinics in partnership with GameChanger are a new component to an ongoing collaboration between USA Baseball and ABCA to provide coaches with the skills they need to teach the game of baseball at any level.
"We could not be more excited to announce GameChanger as a partner for our ACE Community Clinics," said Craig Keilitz, Executive Director, American Baseball Coaches Association. "We have a long-standing history of supporting baseball coaches at the amateur level and providing them with free on-going education of a game that is always evolving."
To find an upcoming clinic near you, visit www.coachclinics.org.
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