June 19, 2013 - Jacob Drobot celebrated after he hit his target three times in a roll to help his team during Baseball Camp last Thursday.
Jared Blumenschein winds the pitch as he sets his aim on the tee stand in front of him.
Photo by Wendi Reardon (click for larger version)
He smiled as he collected his reward - a stack of baseball cards to share and trade with his teammates.
During the week players focused on the fundamentals of the game including throwing, catching, fielding, base running and rules of the game.
Jared Blumenschein shared he learned tips on how not to dip his shoulders while he is batting.
"It's great to help me for baseball," he said.
Austin Exelby added it helped him out for pitching.
"I learned how to step forward and follow through for pitching," he explained. "It's how I could hit the tee stand from ten feet away."
The players received guidance from Phil Price, head coach of the Clarkston High School Baseball Varsity team, and his varsity players throughout the week.
Jacob Forsten, who graduated last year and just finished his freshman year playing ball at St. Clair County Community College , came back to help the future varsity players.
"I love it," he smiled. "It's a lot of fun and the kids enjoy it. We are trying to get them to start thinking about if they want to play sports. It's also getting them out of the house and getting down and dirty playing some sports. It is also a stepping stone to get to the varsity level and to play for Coach Price."
Forsten added they also taught the players at the baseball camps and the T-Ball Clinic about sportsmanship and how to enjoy the game.
"It's not all about baseball," he explained. "We give out baseball cards and one kid will want one but we all share."
It wasn't all about working on their fundamentals. The campers also listened excitedly to the experiences the coaches had during their years playing. Then, shared their own stories.
"Sitting at lunch they love hearing stories and asking us what we play and about our games," Forsten said. "They loved telling us about their games. I have heard probably ten stories about their games and how they got rained out. Or how they were playing in the fourth inning and got rained out."
"I love being here for the kids because they love it," Forsten said. "Baseball is a sport, especially when you are young, keeps you busy. You make friends, too. If I didn't have sports in school I would have been miserable."
The baseball camps and T-Ball Clinic were held through Clarkston Community Education. For more information on this camp and others, visit www.clarkston.k12.mi.us/cec. Please see page 11 for more photos.
Wendi graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with a degree in communications. She wrote for the Michigan Times college paper and Grand Blanc View before joining The Clarkston News in October 2007.