One of the things I was most excited for when deciding to come down to Nicaragua for this coming year was the thought of helping to grow our Baseball program. While I was no little league all-star, I’ve always enjoyed watching the game and I still appreciate the beauty of well-played baseball; a cleanly fielded grounder, a seeing-eye single – it’s all an integral part of “America’s Pastime”. So needless to say, I was excited to come down to Managua and do my best to help teach some of the boys (ages 13-15) some of the fundamentals of baseball. Essentially, I wanted to help make baseball “Managua’s Pastime”.
Well, there was one thing I hadn’t realized. Nicaragua may be home to some incredible “football” players, but baseball around here is no joke; in fact, it’s the national sport. This was shown to us not through words, but through our second league game. With one out in the last inning of our 2nd league game, The Cedro Galan Bravos (that’s us!) were down 9-4. As a team, we put our rally caps on and scored 6 runs in the final inning to walk-off with a win! All twenty of us (plus our Manna cheering section!) stormed the field in celebration, and relished in our first league win. That tail end of our first official doubleheader brought us to 1-1 in league play, and put us in second place in the Managua league.
Since we’ve begun here, we’ve gone from practice once a week to practicing twice a week and we’ve been able to start league games in the Managua Youth Baseball League. So far, your Cedro Galan Bravos are only 1-3 in league play, but are slowly getting better! We’ve grown from 9 to 21 boys in a span of only a few weeks and are playing double-headers every. Most importantly, we’ve been working on in-game communication, batting practice, recognizing and hitting the cutoff man, and catching runners in pickles! Despite our less-than-perfect league record, it’s easy to see that the Bravos of Cedro Galan are making incredible strides this season…we’ll keep you updated as the weeks go on!