Kings Baseball Represents a Unique Perspective On Travel Baseball
As youth baseball continues to evolve, the Triad has seen an influx of teams and organizations. Many of these are created solely to generate profit or opportunity for a select few. A few teams, on the other hand, are created to provide valuable opportunities to kids who otherwise would not be able to participate in the travel tournament aspect of youth baseball. One such organization is Kings Baseball, which is based in Greensboro but serves players also from High Point, Thomasville, Summerfield and McLeansville, to name a few. The Kings currently field 11U, 12U and 14U teams and are in the process of organizing a 10U team.
The Kings were started in August 2019 by Needham Core who currently coaches the 12U team. Coach Core started his youth coaching at Greensboro Day as their 11U-12U summer team coach in 2016 while also serving as an assistant coach for the Big Cats for 3 ½ years. Most recently, Coach Core was an assistant coach at Triad Math and Science up until the season being cut short by Covid-19.
Playing for the Kings requires a certain level of commitment to the game and to the team. A normal year for the Kings includes 3 months of off-season training and workouts up until March when tournaments begin. From that point, the Kings play basically every weekend and practice 4 times a week. The majority of their tournaments are local but the Kings also try to “get away” a couple times a year. As Coach Core puts it, “We try to get the boys out of town…so they can catch some different scenery and have a little fun away from home.” The typical year for the Kings ends in early November.
“Our program has some excellent and knowledgeable coaches available to the players,” Needham remarks when asked about his staff. There is a total of 10 coaches throughout the program, 5 of whom have playing experience at the collegiate level and 1 who pitched at the minor league level.
As is the case with everyone, Covid-19 has significantly impacted the Kings. It has limited their fundraising opportunities and they suspended their 11U season until the point those parents feel more comfortable to return to play. Their 12U team started in March but was forced to wait until June to resume activities.
As is the case with most local youth sports organizations, the biggest challenge is raising the adequate amount of money to cover expenses. Tournament entry fees are several hundred dollars each weekend along with the costs of equipment and special team activities.
Additionally, since the Kings do not have their own field or facility like some travel teams, they are often forced to pay for the use of practice fields, or indoor cages when weather forces the Kings inside. The demographics served by the Kings often means families can’t afford exorbitant player fees to cover the organization’s financial requirements. Coach Core emphasizes, “We don’t turn players away for the inability to pay.” They rely on numerous fundraisers throughout the year as well as sponsors and donors.
On the King’s website under “About Us” you’ll see their mission statement: “Our goal is to teach young boys how to compete in the game of baseball while also teaching them to become great young men and leaders in the community.”
As part of our continued effort to provide baseball and softball opportunities to under-served communities, Touch ‘Em All is excited to sponsor the Kings 12U team in the upcoming Top Gun Tournament of Champions to be held in High Point and Greensboro July 31-August 2. Games will be played at several fields around the Triad including Truist Point, home of the High Point Rockers.
If you would like to find out more about the Kings organization or to inquire about playing, please visit their website or social media or contact via email.
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