Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Vandy takes lead in restoring national pastime

They say baseball is America's pastime, but for today's inner-city youth, it's more like an afterthought.

With the help of his former star pitcher, David Price, Vanderbilt baseball coach Tim Corbin hopes to change that one child at a time. The two have teamed up to allow Nashville RBI to bring up to 100 kids to all five Sunday games at Hawkins Field this season.

You can read the rest of my feature from here (it also got picked up by, but it's the same story so no need to read it twice).

A few other thoughts that didn't fit in the story:

-Whittemore agreed that MLB can improve its marketing in inner-cities by providing more opportunities and role models.

"I think baseball needs to do a better job of marketing the sport and if they can do that," Whittemore said, "it will keep more kids involved in baseball."

-David Price couldn't be more excited the opportunity to be part of this program.

"He's all about something like this," Corbin said. "He's all about little kids. After all, he still is (one), and I hope stays that way too. I told him that that's his biggest positive, that he treats things as if he's still playing a kids' game, and I hope he never loses that focus. They've got the right kid involved in a situation like this."

-The kids take away a great deal from Commodore baseball games.

"They get to watch real good baseball and they can take it back when they're playing their games," Whittemore said. "They've learned how to play defense, how to hit and how to react. They watch Vanderbilt's habits and routines and pick up all that stuff. They're learning."

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