Though they operate more than 200 locations in upwards of 30 states, the team behind U.S. Baseball Academy aims to make each young athlete's experience a personal one. Their four- or six-week camps are taught by local instructors who are current or former coaches at the high school or college level, and typically offer a 6:1 or better player-to-teacher ratio for intense, professional-style training. The Academy's proven itinerary of hitting, pitching, fielding, and baserunning drills was developed by an advisory board of college coaches and Major League players, including Cy Young Award?winner and ace pitcher Brandon Webb.
Every summer, the sprawling fields and winding horse trails of the peaceful Walnut Grove Park undergo a transformation. The clinks and clanks of a towering stage being built permeate the soundscape, taking prominence over the usual noises of bird chirps and rustling leaves. The aromas of tender barbeque meats fill the air, and droves of music-lovers, families, and groups of friends flock to the park with their lawn chairs and beach blankets in tow. Once the crowd has arrived, top local musicians take to the stage to perform lively rock and blues songs as servers top off plastic cups with ice-cold brews. The normally serene park is now the bustling scene of the weekend-long City of San Marcos Rock, Blues & BBQ Festival, which?like the Lincoln statue?s brief sentience and subsequent leg stretch?only happens once a year.
The Yard is a state-of-the-art baseball training facility featuring multiple, full-length indoor batting cages with machines that hurl genuine, seam-laden baseballs. To abbreviate the ballistic learning curve, cages are outfitted with The Grid technology, which tracks the ball’s exit speed and provides a visual chart of where each hit would land if the cage had no walls or cruel, cruel gravity. A true trainer’s tool, The Grid emits constant feedback about changes in swing habits as well as up-to-date ratings against previous batters in the same swinging echelon.
This 8,000-square-foot facility houses five indoor batting areas to train baseball beaters on customized pitching machines capable of launching fast balls and curve balls at speeds of 25 to 90 mph, faster than the speed of black light moving toward a felt Don Mattingly. Each cage provides pop-fly pilots with helmets, bats, and baseballs. Hardball Sports Academy also includes two cages equipped for live pitching with L-screens that protect the delicate exoskeletons of warm-blooded lobbers.
Super Swing Sports' youth softball, baseball and tee-ball clinics forgo the competitive nature of the sports in favor of fun and teamwork. Boys and girls as young as 3 participate in the structured programs, which teach sport-specific skills such as hitting and fielding, plus the value of exercise and sportsmanship. Since there's no pressure, the youngsters are able to fully enjoy the sports, leaving nerves and performance expectations for later in life.
Since 1984, Sports Fever has outfitted fans of nearly every professional and collegiate sport with the colors and emblems of their beloved teams. With 16 brick-and-mortar stores throughout Northern and Southern California and an extensive online catalog of apparel and accessories, Sports Fever lets locals celebrate the Giants' recent world-championship victory with sporty T-shirts while supplying alumni with college hoodies that show off their schools’ chart-topping ACT scores.