Global Baseball

One man\’s year-long journey through the world of baseball

Mets Reach Out to Ghana

This is pretty cool. The New York Mets paid for six Ghanaians to travel to the United States and attend Spring Training with the club this year. This is the first I have heard about baseball in Ghana, which did not have any representatives at least year’s MLB European Baseball Academy. Three of the Ghanaians who traveled to the U.S. were players, and three were coaches, who attended seminars on modern coaching and training techniques.

Baseball in Africa is a pretty cool development, and both individual teams and MLB are investing millions trying to bring the game to Africa’s poor communities, in hope of creating a new prospect pipeline. Right now African baseball is divided into South Africa, the continent’s lone representative at the World Baseball Classic, and everywhere else. South Africa, where baseball is growing exponentially, has more baseball programs than the rest of Africa combined, so there is quite a long way to go.

A representative of MLB who I spoke to in Africa a couple of months ago told me about a Nigerian outfielder he had occasion to scout who was talented enough to earn a college scholarship with the right training. Three years later, the same MLB official saw the same player in the same tournament, and the kid had played a total of three baseball games in the intervening years, due to lack of opportunity.

It’s a start, but there is a long way to go.

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May 5, 2007 Posted by | African Baseball | 5 Comments