Alumni Return to Serve as Summer Staff

Alumni Return to Serve as Summer Staff

Every summer, RBI Austin brings on 4-6 summer interns to help put on our summer leagues. With the number of RBI Austin kids more than tripling over the past 5 years, we literally wouldn’t be able to function without these young men and women. 

We reserve at least two of these positions for RBI Austin alumni to intentionally continue in our mission of engaging and developing inner-city Austin youth athletically, academically, and spiritually, empowering them to lead the transformation of their communities.

Young men who once played in our programs are returning to help lead those same programs!

Meet Arhian Albis, one of our 2018 summer interns. Arhian is a 2017 graduate of Lanier High School and played with RBI Austin for the past four years. He even had the chance to go to the RBI World Series as a player in 2014. Arhian says that his teammates and mentors through RBI taught him that there are many similarities between baseball and life. 

“Through RBI Austin, I’ve learned qualities that make a good man including commitment, motivation, hard work, and being kind to everyone. My RBI Austin teammates and coaches shaped who I am today and taught me lessons I’ll use for the rest of my life.”

Arhian now mentors others younger than him. Moving beyond the field, Arhian just finished his freshman year at the University of Texas as a biology major. He plans to become an orthopedic surgeon. This summer Arhian is interning for RBI Austin as a way to pay it forward for all that RBI has done for him. 

SPOTLIGHT: 8U Coach Pitch Cardinals

SPOTLIGHT: 8U Coach Pitch Baseball Cardinals

Do we have any other parents or grandparents out there that leave your kiddo’s game hoarse?! We love hearing about parents + grandparents cheering on their children from the stands while coaches are seeing change + development + growth happening in the dugout, on the field, and beyond! 

Meet Lucas, his coach David, and grandmother Julia from the 8U Coach Pitch Baseball Cardinals.

Lucas Rodriguez – 8U Coach Pitch Baseball

8 Years Old
2nd Year with RBI Austin
8U CP Cardinals

 

Q:Is this your first year with RBI Austin?

Lucas: No, it’s my fourth. I’ve been playing baseball for RBI for two years.

 

Q: How did you hear about RBI?

Lucas: My grandma.

 

Q: Why did you want to play baseball out of all sports?

Lucas: I’m not sure.

 

Q: But you like it though?

Lucas: Correct.

 

Q:What is something you hope to learn this season?

Lucas: I’m not sure yet…

 

Q: Is there a position you want to get better at though?

Lucas: Catcher. I played it once and I liked it! I would want to get better at second and pitcher though.

 

Q: Why do you think it’s important to play on a team sport?

Lucas: Because you have a team and it doesn’t feel super good to not be on a team.

 

Q: Why do you like having your teammates?

Lucas: They help me get better!

 

Q: What is something you always look forward to when playing baseball?

Lucas: Games. You can play different positions and you can get points, but at practice you don’t get points.

Q:What’s your favorite baseball team?

Lucas: The Astros.

 

 

Coach David Brahmall

8U CP Cardinals

2nd Year RBI Austin coach

 

Q: How did you hear about RBI?

David: So I moved to Austin about five years ago, and I played baseball growing up. I had always been interested in volunteering and coaching baseball. I had some good friends at work that had coached for RBI and I had always wanted to do it and it sounded interesting but it never worked out until last year.

Q: What brought you back this year to coach again?

David: My co-coach Alex and I coached last year and we had a really good time with the kids — teaching them, helping them to engage, develop, and transform. Last year,  over half our team had never seen a baseball before. We had to teach them how to throw, how to run, how to get excited, and how to love the game. It was amazing to see our team, who at the beginning of the season was getting crushed, end the season winning a game in the playoffs. It was just amazing to see their skills develop and their attitude and determination change, not just in the game but beyond the field. Hopefully that translates to life, seeing that made me want to come back. We had four or five kids from last year, like Lucas, come back so we want to continue to serve them. Just to be able to do that again with more kids and be able to mentor them during the baseball season.

Q: Who is one of the biggest influences on your life?

David: I would say my dad. As far as baseball goes. He loved baseball, played baseball growing up, taught me baseball.  While my wife and I don’t have kids yet, I hope to teach them baseball at some point. Right now, I’m just hoping to teach other kids. But yeah, my dad for sports and life in general. I feel like he always taught me to have to power to succeed and to drive and to also encourage and help other people. He’s been a big influence on me in a lot of ways.

 

Julia Castillo

Grandmother of Lucas Rodriguez
2nd Year with RBI Austin
8U CP Cardinals

 

Q: What is one reason why you feel that a team sport is important?

Julia: I think its because of friendship and learning it’s not just about you. And working well with others. Learning that it’s “We did it, we did it together”, I think is awesome. Coaches like Coach David bring a lot to helping these kids promote each other and cheer each other on and be good sports to the other team. I like it when I see one of the teammates or Lucas high-five another kid coming off of the plate whether they hit the ball or didn’t.

Q: How do you think baseball or sports in general help #BeyondTheField?

Julia: Everywhere you go and everywhere you work you’re going to be working with a group to achieve something. Watching kids learn to do that and to respect each other and look past faults and difficulties and still be good sports about everything is really a life skill. It’s a skill you need when you go to work and for the rest of your life.

 

Q: What’s your favorite thing about having Lucas play baseball?

Julia: I come from Oklahoma and we only do baseball. Coming and watching these kids every game is amazing, watching them in the field is amazing, watching them achieve something and grow in self-confidence is [just amazing]. I leave here hoarse every game, I have no voice after every game.

RBI Austin to Host MLB RBI Southwest Regional Tournament

RBI Austin to Host MLB RBI Southwest Regional Tournament

For the first time ever, the MLB RBI Southwest Regional tournament is heading to Austin, Texas!

RBI Austin will play host to the 2018 RBI Southwest Regional Tournament for 15U and 18U Baseball and 18U Softball on July 26-29 in Austin, Texas. Teams from four organizations across the region — Astros RBI, New Orleans RBI, Rangers RBI, and RBI Austin — will compete for the opportunity to advance to the 2018 RBI World Series in Minneapolis, Minnesota in August.

The Regional pool play games will be held Friday and Saturday at Concordia University and Westwood High School. The Baseball championship games will be at Dell Diamond and the Softball championship game will be at Concordia University. 

View the complete regional schedule and more event details.

Triple-A for a Day 2018

Triple-A for a Day

Saturday, August 4th

What: Triple-A for a Day including playoff games
When: Saturday, August 4th

  • 5pm: 12U Softball Semifinal (NAO Field #5)
  • 6:45pm: Jr. RBI Closing Ceremonies (NAO Field #4)
  • 7:30pm: 12U Baseball Semifinal (NAO Field #4)

Where: North Austin Optimist (NAO) —  1105 Morrow St., Austin, TX 78757
Who: All RBI kids, families, volunteers, and friends!
Why: To celebrate the end of the season!

The Round Rock Express is bringing their gameday crew, fun, and entertainment to make the Jr. RBI Austin playoff games an event for the whole RBI Austin family.

So whether you’re playing in one of the playoff games or joining us in the stands, there will be fun for every player, family, and fan!

Have questions? Email us at info@rbiaustin.org.

SPOTLIGHT: 9U Softball Nationals

RBI Austin Spotlight: 9U Softball Nationals

Meet this week’s spotlights from the 9U Softball Nationals!

 

Nyah Muckerson

8 Years Old
1st Year with RBI Austin
9U SB Nationals

Q: Is this your first year playing with RBI?
Nyah: Yes. It is my first year playing RBI, not first time playing softball.

Q: How did you hear about RBI
Nyah: From my mom!

 

Q: What do you hope to learn this season in softball or skills outside of baseball?
Nyah: How to slide and stuff like that. My mom said if you don’t know how to slide and you don’t slide into home then it’s an out, and I don’t want to get out.

Q: Do you really like it?
Nyah:Yeah, it’s my favorite sport! I want to play forever.

Q: Who is one of the biggest influences on your life?
Nyah: Jackie Robinson. He was the first black person to play baseball.

Q: Why do you think it’s important to play on a team sport?
Nyah: Because if you’re not playing on a team you don’t necessarily have the experience of softball or a sport.

Q: What do you like most about having teammates?
Nyah: They cheer on for you.

Q: What’s one of your favorite things about the summer league? Practices or games?
Nyah: Both!

 

 Jacquelynn Dolly

 Mother of Nyah Muckerson
1st year with RBI Austin
9U SB National
 

Q: How did you hear about RBI?
Jacquelynn: A friend of a friend.

 

Q: Why did you decide to enroll her in RBI?

Jacquelynn: She just started playing in the spring, and I wanted her to get more experience. I heard good things about it so we enrolled!

 

Q: What is one thing that you hope Nyah will learn this summer?
Jacquelynn: I’m hoping she advances her softball skills and also just how to be a team player, like a real team player where she communicates with her team and hopefully a team leader.

 

Q: What do you think a team leader looks like? What qualities do they have?
Jacquelynn: She’s a positive role model, she cheers the team on, cheers her teammates on and shows them how the game is played.

 

Q: What is the best thing about having Nyah play softball?
Jacquelynn: I like that she gets to meet a lot of people from all kinds of backgrounds and hopefully she’s able to advance with them. Lifelong friends is what I’m hoping for and maybe they’ll play together in high school.

 

Q: Why do you think it’s important to play on a team sport?
Jacquelynn: They learn things that you cannot learn at school or at home. Working as a team versus being selfish and wanting to get the shine, I just think it’s important. Everything in life, when you go to work or school you have to do things as a team.

 

Q: How do you think the sport of softball prepares the player #BeyondtheField?
Jacquelynn:  Well with my child, I think it helps her think quicker. She has to be able to move and think and react. I don’t know about softball being a sport that teaches teamwork differently than any other sport. What I like about softball is that it’s with girls and it’s her first team sport where it’s just girls and you know they get to act like a girl and do girly things.

 

 

Rebecca Poulos 

9U SB Nationals Coach
2nd year with RBI Austin

 

Q: How did you learn about RBI last year?
Rebecca: I’ve been going to the Austin Stone community church for about eight years and RBI is talked about there because of For the City and the connection and how they work out of the same building. I did a women’s development program and they had a section where they talked about For the City and talked a lot about RBI.

 

Q: What made you come back this year?
Rebecca: I would say just because of how much joy it brings to coach a team. I got to coach a coach pitch team last year with the Benjamin family and there’s no greater joy than getting to play baseball during the summer with a bunch of 7 or 8 year-olds and getting to share my faith and tell them about Jesus. It’s an added bonus and probably the best part.

 

Q: What is something that you hope these kids will learn this summer?
Rebecca: Gosh, I think if anything how to play softball. I think the skills that they learn and just as a team, working together with other people and other girls that they may not know. Getting to know them and cheering each other on and I think at the end, just knowing that they’re known and loved, and that somebody cares for them, and that they can do anything.

 

Q: Who is one of the biggest influences on your life?
Rebecca: My parents. I love them, and they’ve done a lot for me and sacrificed a lot for me to get me where I am today. Loved me well and provided for me.

 

Q: Why did you want to coach this age group?
Rebecca: I’m a teacher for 3-5 year-olds so I’m not really around the older kids, but I think part of it is that after t-ball they kind of start developing skills and they’re pretty independent and so you’re just teaching them those skills. There is something about 7-8 year-olds and they’re fun to coach. They’re an enjoyable age group and bring a lot of joy. I think they’re able to communicate and they don’t necessarily need their mom and dad right behind them.

 

Q: How do you feel the game of softball improves players #BeyondTheField?
Rebecca: Well it motivates them, and it makes them push themselves to get out of their comfort zone and learn that they can do a lot of different things they may not have thought of before. It makes them work hard and develops something inside of them to try new things.

SPOTLIGHT: 12U Softball Mariners

RBI Austin Spotlight: 12U Softball Mariners

You know what time it is!

Meet this week’s spotlights: Sydney, Grant, and Lynn from the 12U Softball Mariners!

Sydney Floyd

12 yrs old
12U Softball Mariners
1st Year with RBI Austin

Q: How long have you been playing with RBI Austin?

Sydney: This is my first year with RBI. It is my third year playing softball though.

Q: How did you hear about RBI?

Sydney: We were looking for a sports program, so we looked one up and found RBI.

Q: What do you hope to learn this year?

Sydney: Fielding the ball better and hitting better. That’s what I’m working on right now, along with making new friends.

Q: What position do you like the most and why?

Sydney: I played outfield my first two years, but I like first base and catcher the most. I guess I like them because you get the ball more and you are more involved in the game.

Q: Who is one person that’s influenced your life the most?

Sydney: I don’t know, probably my parents. They just say to go for what you want and to do your best no matter what.

Q: Why do you think its important to be on a team sport and have teammates?

Sydney: So you can get to know people better and just make more friends.

 

Grant Herring

12U Softball Mariners Coach
2nd year with RBI Austin

Q: How long have you been coaching for RBI?

Grant: This is my second year coaching.

Q: What made you decide to coach last year?

Grant: Nothing really. I saw it online and wanted to get involved. I liked the mission once I saw the mission and it appealed to me really well. I had a lot of free time and a lot of knowledge about the sport, so that had something to do with it.

Q: What made you coach again this year?

Grant: A lot of my girls’ parents reached out to me and asked if I was coaching again because they wanted to be playing with me again, so I recruited a couple of my friends and we decided to team up and go at it.

Q: What is one thing that your girls that you’re coaching this year will learn?

Grant: I’d say teamwork and hustle. Eve when you’re older, you still need to understand to work as a team, you can’t do everything by yourself.

Q: Who is one of the biggest influences in your life?

Grant: I’d say my parents for sure. They raised me to be the man that I am and to treat everybody with respect.

Q: What is one way that you think RBI’s mission through softball better the player beyond the field?

Grant: Teamwork and hustle. That’s a lot of it for playing baseball and going into the workforce. It teaches the players life skills.

Lynn Floyd

Father of Sydney Floyd
12U Softball Mariners
1st year with RBI Austin

Q: How did you hear about RBI?

Lynn: We have some friends at the church we attend whose kids have participated and have told us about it. So we did some research online and found that we loved the mission of RBI baseball and its intentions.

Q: What is one thing you hope that Sydney will learn this season?

Lynn: I think with anything whether it’s baseball or some other activity, just whatever do have fun, but do things with excellence. Like if it’s a team sport, you know, do the best you can because it’s not just about you, but your team. You want to play well personally but you also want to play well to help your team.

Q: How has your experience with RBI been so far?

Lynn: Although it’s still early in the season, I am impressed with the way things are run. There’s intentionality in the coaching, very positive, and everybody gets a chance to play and gets their turn. The values of the organization are very much expressed through everything that’s done out here from the umpires to the coaches to the parents, so it definitely has impressed us.

Q: What is one of the biggest influences on your life?

Lynn: As a person of faith, God is the biggest influencer on my life. Apart from him, I can do nothing. Apart from him, I can’t be an effective parent. There’s been a lot of people throughout my life, my grandfather made a huge impact, youth leaders growing up in my life, were thankfully able to intersect my life with theirs at just the right time. Definitely people in my family and then also youth leaders, you know people in my teenage years that allowed me to get to know them at an important time in my life.

Q: What is one reason why you think it is important to play a team sport?

Lynn: Well, obviously it helps build a person’s character. You’re not only looking to your own interests but to the interests of others, I think a team is not just about a sport here but it’s also about preparing for other things in life. The things that kids learn here can be taken out into the real world.

SPOTLIGHT: 10U Baseball Cubs

RBI Austin Spotlight: 10U Baseball Cubs

You know what time it is!

Meet this week’s spotlights: Blaise, Ricky, and Travis from the 10U Baseball Cubs!

Travis and Blaise have been a part of the RBI Austin family for 3 years now and have experienced the “comradery” that the game of baseball provides.

Coach Ricky mentions that the kids are what made him come back for his 2nd summer coaching. See more below!

Blaise Kizer

9 yrs old
10U Baseball Cubs
3rd Year with RBI Austin

Q: How long have you been playing with RBI Austin?

Blaise: This is my 3rd year! I started playing when I was in t-ball.

Q: What keeps you coming back?

Blaise: I like the game of baseball, it makes me happy. Every year I get to learn more and get better and better.

Q: What do you hope to learn this year?

Blaise: I want to get better at catching and hopefully hit more balls.

Q: What is something that you learned from your coach or teammates?

Blaise: I learned to hit, catch, and to always have fun!

Q: Who is one person that’s influenced your life the most?

Blaise: My coaches and parents. My parents always take me to baseball, and my coaches are always pushing me to be better.

Q: Why do you think its important to be on a team sport?

Blaise: I think it’s important so that you can make friends and have fun.

Ricky Epps

10U Baseball Cubs Coach
2nd year with RBI Austin

Q: How long have you been coaching for RBI?

Ricky: This is my second year coaching. I returned this year because I love the kids. They make my life a little bit better. They bring joy in my life a lot. When I’m stressed out they make me more happy.

Q: What made you decide to coach last year?

Ricky: I had a lot of opportunities when I was younger to play, so I don’t want to waste my talent. I want to teach these young boys how to play baseball. I played when I was younger, and my dad played major league baseball for the Cincinnati Reds.

Q: Who is the biggest influence on your life?

Ricky: My wife and my kids. They are the ones who make me enjoy life in the morning. I was never a morning person until I married my wife. They make my life perfect.

Q: What is the best part about coaching the 10U Cubs?

Ricky: They are coachable. They listen. They learn. It’s “yes sir/no sir” on the field. They are very disciplined and show up to practice and games. We don’t have to do a lot of yelling at these kids. We aren’t lacking much. I coached six of these kids last year, so I decided to coach 10U baseball this season to stick with them.

Q: How do think baseball betters the player #BeyondtheField?

Ricky: Baseball teaches discipline and respect. It teaches you how to grow. It teaches you the world of life. Sometimes you fail, sometimes you don’t fail. Some things are going to be easy, and some things are going to be hard.

Travis Kizer

Father of Blaise Kizer
10U Baseball Cubs
3rd year with RBI Austin

Q: Since you are a returning RBI Austin parent, what keeps you enrolling Blaise?

Travis: He keeps wanting to play and he has played with several of the RBI kids for years.

Q: What is one thing you hope Blaise will learn, whether it is baseball skills or non-baseball skills?

Travis: I hope that he continues to keep playing well, and I hope that the team keeps building and getting to know each other better so that they have that comradery.

Q: What is your favorite thing about having Blaise play baseball?

Travis: I love watching him play and I love that he loves it!

Q: Why do you think it’s important about having team sports?

Travis: It builds comradery and a unique community. Even as a whole, RBI Austin has a baseball community. I recognize players and parents on several other teams.

SPOTLIGHT: 12U Baseball Astros

RBI Austin Spotlight: 12U Baseball Astros

This week, we’re jumping into the 12U Baseball Astros’ dugout! Meet Bruce, Travis, and Christina.

Bruce Gusman

Q: With this being your first season with RBI Austin, what do you hope to learn this season from your coach or teammates?

Bruce: I hope to learn about the different positions and specifically I want to learn and get better in the outfield.

Q: Who has influenced you the most in your life?

Bruce: The biggest influence in my life is my mom because she is always encouraging and supportive even when they lose games.

Q: What’s the best part about playing baseball/softball? What do you look forward to about playing for your RBI team?

Bruce: I love getting to meet new friends through RBI and learning more about the game of baseball.

Travis Gauntt 

Q: With this being your first RBI Austin season coaching, why did you decide to coach this year?

Travis: I grew up in baseball family & played baseball growing up so I love the sport. Additionally, I just moved to Austin and am finishing up my MBA at Texas so I had some free time to coach.

Q: Who has influenced your life the most?

Travis: My dad was the greatest influence in my life. He was an incredible role model, played baseball and was able to coach me. He is an incredible man professionally, personally, spiritually. He has helped shape who I am today.

Q: What’s the best part about coaching? Is there anything in particular that you look forward to during the week about getting to coach?

Travis: My favorite thing about coaching is that I get to make a difference in these kids’ lives and give back to them. I especially enjoy practices because that’s where I get to coach and teach and get to know the kids.

Christina Gonzalez 

Q: Why did you decide to enroll your child in RBI baseball/softball this summer? What do you hope they will learn besides baseball/softball skills?

Christina: Bruce’s friend from school told him about RBI and he came home and pulled it up on the internet and asked me to register him for the RBI summer league.

Q: What is your favorite part about having your kids participate in RBI?

Christina: RBI is so good for the boys and they really enjoy it so far. I love how organized RBI is. Everything is run smoothly, and I haven’t had any issues yet. I love that the boys get to make new friends and that he has good influences in his life.

SPOTLIGHT: 16U RBI Softball Rangers

RBI Austin Spotlight: 16U Softball Rangers

Our RBI Austin Spotlights are back!

Every week during the summer season, we spotlight a player, coach, and parent in our summer league. Spotlight players exemplify sportsmanship, character, hustle, and coachability. Spotlight coaches are consistent, prepared, humble, and spirited. Spotlight parents are encouraging, supportive, present, and devoted.

Our spotlights this week represent what RBI is all about. We seek to go beyond the field to develop and transform the kids in our program so that they can be the change in their communities. We are pleased to announce our spotlights for this week below:

Juliana Lopez
15 yrs old
16U Softball Rangers
1st year with RBI Austin

Q: With this being your first season with RBI Austin, what do you hope to learn this season from your coach or teammates?

Juliana: “I’m a new player. I just want to get better as a player, and with the extra practices and games, I feel like I can achieve that.”

Q: Who has influenced you the most in your life?

Juliana: “The person who has influenced me most is my dad because he is always there for me. Always at every game, pushing me to do my best.”

Q: What’s the best part about playing baseball/softball? What do you look forward to about playing for your RBI team?

Juliana: “What I look forward to each week is getting better as an individual and as a team. It is a team effort so if we work hard together then we can take on any win.”

Mariah Alderman

16U Softball Rangers Coach
1st year with RBI Austin

Q: With this being your first RBI Austin season coaching, why did you decide to coach this year?

Mariah: “I am a new coach, and I decided to coach because I love softball and I love Jesus.”

Q: Who has influenced your life the most?

Mariah: “My young life leader from high school, Hillary Brenner.”

Q: What’s the best part about coaching? Is there anything in particular that you look forward to during the week about getting to coach?

Mariah: “Softball is just great to be around. It’s an all-around thing, because softball includes girls. I miss playing it so much, and it’s fun to see the girls get to live their glory days.”

 

Jerry Lopez

Father of Juliana Lopez
16U Softball Rangers
1st year with RBI Austin

Q: Why did you decide to enroll your child in RBI baseball/softball this summer? What do you hope they will learn besides baseball/softball skills?

Jerry: “We got the info from her coach at Akins high school, and she’s [Juliana] the one who told me about it so she [Juliana] wanted to come play this summer, to keep her skills and get ready for next year. Basically, I hope she learns friendship and teamwork because she needs a little more of that. And hopefully, the skills she’s learning here are making her a better player.  RBI builds them up and gets them ready for the next level.”

Q: What is your favorite part about having your kids participate in RBI?

Jerry: “My favorite part is to see her have fun out here with all the girls and you know, pick up her teammates and all that. Friendship is a major key.”

RBI Austin Uniform Shop — 6/9

RBI Austin Uniform Shop

Still need to purchase pants, belts, and socks for your player? The RBI Austin Uniform Shop will be open THIS Saturday, June 9th. See details below:

WHEN: Saturday, June 9th from 9am-12pm

WHERE: The For the City Center (500 E. St. Johns Ave, Austin, TX 78752) in the Ridgetop Room

WHAT: RBI Austin Uniform Shop where you can purchase pants, belts, and socks for your favorite RBI Austin player. Prices are below:

  • Pants ($10)
  • Belts ($5)
  • Socks ($5)
  • All Three Combo ($15)
  • RBI Austin Parent T-Shirt ($10)

Players will receive a team jersey and cap from their coaches at their first game. However, children are responsible for providing their own pants, belts, and socks.