From ‘The Show’ to Sharks: How One Former Major Leaguer is Mentoring the Next Generation of Baseball Players

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From ‘The Show’ to Sharks: How One Former Major Leaguer is Mentoring the Next Generation of Baseball Players

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Season: 2
Episode: 17

From Hyde Park, Massachusetts

 

Manny Delcarmen is putting his baseball skills to work, mentoring the next generation of players. Manny and his best friend (who was his catcher in high school), Jose Diaz, opened the Boston Athletic Academy to give students in the Hyde Park area opportunities he didn’t have. Manny is grateful he had baseball to turn to.

 

“I didn’t have a place like this to keep me out of trouble and off the street,” Delcarmen says. “We want to give these students a place to better their game but also ensure they are hitting their academic goals.”

One of the requirements of participating in the program is keeping your grades up. And it’s not just good grades for participants of this academy; they are also winners!

“Last year, we started the year with three BAA Hammerhead Baseball Teams in The New Balance Select league for the Spring and Summer. By fall, we went from three to seven teams, showcasing our talent with two championship wins. Our 16U and 10U Hammerhead Baseball Teams dominated the competition.”

BAA’s 16U Hammerhead Baseball Team secured second place in the firecracker tournament, and their 13U team also finished second in the spring classic.

“I was drafted right out of high school, so I didn’t go through any of this,” Delcarmen says – referring to the confusing and time-consuming paperwork college-bound kids have to face now.

Manny keeps it humble. Manny has the moniker “The Pride of Hyde Park,” and he was the first draftee from a Boston public high school in 34 years.

For his continued dedication to the City of Boston, the local communities, along with Thomas M. Menino, officially proclaimed October 2, 2005, “Manny Delcarmen Day”.

 

Manny and Jose have a mission to help kids get off the street by creating student-athletes and educating parents. BAA teaches college-aged students how to prepare for the next level by assisting with FASFA documents and educating the parents about grants so students do not worry about focusing on debt if they decide to further their education.

“Over 550 families have come in through the facility. Usually, students 14 years older and up take advantage of the academic assistance. But it’s a gateway for the younger kids to see how they can learn from Jose, who was in college admissions for over ten years, so he knows how to prepare the students.”

 

Participants who are seeking a college degree can expect this help from BAA:

  • Provide support throughout the college search and application process, beginning in ninth grade
  • Help student-athletes fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)
  • Facilitate communication between college advisors, student-athletes, and family
  • Engage college admissions staff on behalf of student-athletes
  • Offer private tutoring in any high school subject and for SAT, ACT, and SAT II subject tests
  • Build a profile for each applicant, including a highlight video and academic transcripts

 

The BAA facility has classrooms as well as relationships with local schools and partners with local colleges regarding tutoring. They are also part of the Boston community and have many sponsors, including The Red Sox Foundation.

However, with an ever-increasing demand for their services and the expansion of the Hammerhead team rosters, they require financial support from the community.

If you can partner with Manny and Jose, they are looking for sponsors who will have the opportunity to have their company name on the Hammerhead jersey sleeve.

“It’s important that our BAA Youth Participants understand that they have the potential to be the absolute best at what they love to do. We work closely with our youth to push them beyond just “potential” – coaching them towards excellence, strengthening their confidence, and teaching them how to be successful through sports.” – Boston Athletic Academy

Manny and Jose feel that private coaching is so vital that students can book private sessions with their professional coaches, Hector Vargas, Junior Pena, and Bryan Mejia, through the BAA website. You have to be at least nine years old to participate.

But these are tomorrow’s leaders, and from this generation come some disturbing numbers:

31% of economically-disadvantaged youth do not graduate
12% of Boston youth drop out of school

“Manny and I genuinely relate to the youth that we mentor. Being a minority youth in this big city of ours has its challenges and obstacles, but the adults around us held us to high standards and encouraged us to rise above the noise through education and sports. It’s only right that we pay it forward with today’s youth. They’re not just the future of our Boston, but society as a whole.” – Jose Diaz, BAA President

 

To learn more about BAA, please check out this page: https://www.baaboston.org/home

 

To sponsor the students, please check out this donation page: https://www.baaboston.org/sponsors

 

All deductions are tax-deductible. 

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