Jim Kaat's New Zealand Adventure
Kia Ora...[the New Zealand way to say Good day] ..
Today was my first experience in Nelson promoting and talking baseball, how refreshing, coaches and players who have been playing fast pitch softball are beginning to aspire to be baseball pitchers.
The man in the photo with me is Marty Grant, Marty was arguably the number 1 fast pitch softball pitcher in the world in the 90's...New Zealand national team won many medals with him as the star pitcher. He is now one of the coaches for the baseball program here in Nelson and his 13 year old son,Cooper, and a few of Cooper's buddies want to be big league ball players.
Marty and I visited for a couple hours today discussing the 'art of pitching' baseball versus softball....This is going to be soooo much fun..These kids and coaches love our game.
Starting on January 17 we will have several sessions about pitching through January 31.
The skills the kids have as position players are easily used in playing baseball, actually, they are faster with their reactions because softball is played on a smaller field and the game moves faster, the only difference in the 2 games is the pitcher in baseball throws overhand.
I will be able to teach and demonstrate that in the upcoming sessions. Thank You to the MLBPA Alumni assn for helping me be a part of this rewarding experience.
James Lee "Jim" Kaat, nicknamed "Kitty", is a former American Major League Baseball (MLB) pitcher for the Washington Senators/Minnesota Twins (1959–73), Chicago White Sox (1973–75), Philadelphia Phillies (1976–79), New York Yankees (1979–80), and St. Louis Cardinals (1980–83). His 25-year career spanned four decades.
Kaat was an All-Star for three seasons and a Gold Glove winner for sixteen seasons. He was the American League (AL) leader in shutouts (5) in 1962, and the AL leader in wins (25) and complete games (19) in 1966. In addition to his 283 career wins, he has three 20-win seasons.