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Over 800 players expected to play in baseball championships

  • BBF CHAMPIONSHIPS: JBLN and the Grand Bahama Amateur Baseball Association face each other in this file photo. A number of young baseball players will be in Grand Bahama this weekend for the 11th Annual BBF Andre Rodgers Championships. TNG FILE PHOTO

Guardian Sports Reporter

Published: Jun 20, 2013

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Senator Greg Burrows said that this is the best sports weekend in the country, as two of the more notable federations host their biggest championships in Freeport, Grand Bahama, at the same time, and also the swimming nationals here in New Providence.

The 11th Annual Andre Rodgers Championships, hosted by the Bahamas Baseball Federation (BBF), will swing into action today, while the BTC National Open Track and Field Championships will run Friday and Saturday. Both championships will attract athletes from all around the country and should boost the local economy in Grand Bahama, according to Burrows.

“I think Freeport needs these [two] events,” said Burrows from Grand Bahama. “It is very important and when you look at it on a grand stage, you are showcasing the talents of our athletes which many only get to see on television. Baseball and track and field, all two are of equal importance in this light. It is positive and very timely. I am pleased to know that the baseball championships will be held here, and that track and field decided to move their championships here as well.”

Burrows is the founder of the Freedom Farm Baseball League. He believes that his program will dominate the competition this year, taking at least five of the titles that are up for grabs. Other teams and leagues traveling to Grand Bahama to participate in the annual championships are the Youth Baseball Association of Abaco, the Community Baseball League, the Eleuthera Junior Baseball League of Rock Sound, the Exuma Little League Association, the Freedom Farm Baseball League, the Junior Baseball League of Nassau, the Long

Island Baseball League, the North Abaco Baseball Association and the Spanish Wells Baseball League. Teams representing Grand Bahama will be the Legacy Baseball League, the Grand Bahama Amateur Baseball Association and the Grand Bahama Little League.

Burrows added: “I think we will compete strongly in all of the divisions, and be in the championships in at least five of them.

“Personally, my expectations are very high. I think it will be a great feat if we can pull off the wins in the first five divisions including Coach Pitch, BBF Minors (9-10), BBF Majors (11-12), Junior Division (13-15) and the High School Division (16-18).

“Since we only have 12 guys in the 25-and-under, we will have to do the best we can with that. We don’t have the pitching arms that will be needed in that division. I still think that we will be the dominant factor in the tournament.

“Our program is strong because we are consistent. I was talking to some guys who told me that if we want to grow and be strong you have to be consistent.

“There are guys who come out here and commit themselves fully. That is what makes Freedom Farm so strong, our level of dedication and consistency. Of course you have to have guys with the ability to coach and to teach, guide and develop baseball players. We have that because the guys who went off before have all returned home and are now building the program. Even the ones who weren’t as fortunate to go off, want the program to be successful and they continue to build the Freedom Farm brand.”

The annual baseball championships have attracted more than 800 players and will conclude on Sunday.

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