Major League Baseball Urban Youth Academy
The Major League Baseball Urban Youth Academy are a series of academies opening in cities across the United States and one in Puerto Rico that provides free year-round instruction in baseball and softball to the area's youth.
The first Urban Youth Academy opened in 2002 in Puerto Rico as the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy and High School. In 2006, the first Major League Baseball Urban Youth Academy in the United States was opened in Compton, California, providing free baseball and softball instruction to Southern California youth, ages 8–17. Since then academies have opened in Houston, Texas (2010), New Orleans, Louisiana (2012) and Cincinnati, Ohio.
The first Urban Youth Academy opened in 2002 in Puerto Rico as the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy and High School.
Compton, California (Los Angeles)
Encompassing 10 acres (40,000 m2) on the campus of Compton Community College, the MLB Urban Youth Baseball Academy features state-of-the-art facilities including a show field; complete with scoreboard, a grandstand that seats nearly 200 fans, dugouts and lights; as well as an auxiliary field; softball field; youth field; and a 12,000-square-foot (1,100 m2) clubhouse consisting of a weight room, locker room, and other training facilities. The complex also features batting cages and pitching mounds.
The Academy operates on a year-round basis under the leadership of former Anaheim Angel Darrell Miller. An after-school program, week-long clinics accommodating approximately 200 youth per day is held, as well as month-long clinics. Over the course of the first year of operation, the Academy expects to offer the free program to a minimum of 2,500 youth.
The Houston Major League Baseball Urban Youth Academy opened in 2010. It is located at Sylvester Turner Park on Houston’s north side. The main stadium at the academy has permanent seating for 500 fans, space for an additional 1,800 fans, dugouts and lights. There’s also one auxiliary field, two Little League/softball fields and 1,500 square feet of office space and other facilities.
New Orleans, Louisiana
The New Orleans Major League Baseball Urban Youth Academy opened in 2012 and is located at Wesley Barrow Stadium. It is a 650-seat baseball stadium located in the Pontchartrain Park section of New Orleans, Louisiana. The stadium includes a 200-square-foot climate-controlled press box, a public address system and LED scoreboard. The baseball field features professional-sized artificial turf with a clay pitcher's mound and two fenced bullpens.
The facility also includes grass tee-ball and softball fields, a three-lane outdoor batting practice cage and a two-lane indoor batting practice building. It also includes administration facilities and two 300-square-foot conference rooms.
Located nine miles away from the Great American Ball Park is the P&G Cincinnati Major League Baseball Urban Youth Academy. The $5.5 million complex includes four outdoor baseball and softball fields and a 33,000-square-foot indoor facility that holds batting cages, pitching tunnels and another field. It provides free year-round instruction in baseball and softball to the area's youth.
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