CAREER DREAMS:What do you want to be when you grow up?A Disney actor
LOVE OF THE GAME:What’s your favorite part about playing baseball?It’s awesome!
FAVORITE POSITION:Center field
FAVORITE PLAYER:Who is your favorite baseball player? The girl, Mo’ne Davis
RBI KIDS:One son, Kiyan.
TIME with RBI:This is our first season.
PERSONAL VALUE:What do you think Kiyan gains the most from being involved with RBI off of the ball field? The friendships and teamwork.
BASEBALL PARENT:What’s the hardest part about being a baseball parent?The heat!
FAVORITE PART OF THE GAME: What is your favorite part of the game of baseball? Watching the kids play. They’re so cute!
TIME with RBI:This is my second year coaching with RBI!
FAVORITE RBI MEMORY:Seeing some of our smallest players develop into kids that can throw, hit, and run super confidently.
PARENTS and PLAYERS: What do you think families and players gain the most from being involved with RBI? Community, friendship and just learning how to play sports. You learn a lot through team sports and parents get to grow as they get to watch their kids and learn from them. It can be very encouraging.
FAVORITE BASEBALL MEMORY:What’s your favorite baseball memory? One of our kids who was going to be placed on a different team this summer, ended up being placed with us again. He’s been hitting home-runs for us left and right. It’s incredible to be able to see the amount of confidence he’s gained and just how much he has grown since last year.
CAREER DREAMS:What do you want to be when you grow up?An inventor. I would invent a hover car and they’re going to come in bright colors.
LOVE OF THE GAME:What’s your favorite part about playing baseball?Being able to play with my friends
FAVORITE PLAYER:Who is your favorite baseball player? I don’t know. I don’t really like baseball. My favorite team is the Express so my favorite player is probably Spike. I’ve been to his dog house 25 times.
RBI KIDS:One son, Beckett.
TIME with RBI:This is our third season.
PERSONAL VALUE:What do you think Beckett gains the most from being involved with RBI off of the ball field? Sportsmanship, being part of a team, and being part of something bigger than himself. He also gets to cheer on his teammates.
PROUD PARENT: When is a time you were most proud of Beckett?I’m most proud of him when I see him being compassionate to other people. He’s very aware of all the homeless people on the side of the road. He wants to know all about them and help them. Any time he thinks of other people first, I’m proud of him.
BASEBALL PARENT:What’s the hardest part about being a baseball parent?It’s a time commitment. It doesn’t seem like a lot, but people are working and living all over the city so it’s definitely a big time commitment. Well worth it, though.
GAMEDAY MUST-HAVE: What is something you have to have with you when you are watching a game? Every game I bring a squirt bottle and I spray all the players to keep them cool. It’s very popular.
TIME with RBI:This is my 5th year involved with RBI but my first year with coach pitch. Beckett is my son so I’ve just moved up through age groups as he’s gotten older.
BACKGROUND:Did you play sports growing up? I played sports, but I was from a really small town and we didn’t have a lot of money so I didn’t play baseball. I played soccer, basketball and some softball and I always enjoyed it.
LEARNING FROM THE KIDS:What’s something you’ve learned from Beckett?Resilience and keeping focused. He has cystic fibrosis so putting on weight and muscle and everything about sports is hard for him. We try to push him towards sports to help him with that, but it’s always a struggle. When he was struggling to get a hit last season, he was really determined. He said he wanted to go out and practice 20 minutes a day every day until he got a hit. Getting to cheer him on is awesome.
PARENTS and PLAYERS: What do you think families and players gain the most from being involved with RBI? I think RBI is a family. We talk about cheering on each other, and I think it brings out a commonality. All of these parents drive so far and put in so much time and effort so getting all of the players together is really special. A couple games ago a few of our players said they were glad their coaches didn’t yell at them so we try to always be positive and encouraging for our players, even when we’re correcting them.
PROGRAM VALUE:What do you think you gain from being involved with RBI? The relationships with the players and seeing them all growing up from season to season. Seeing them remembering the value of teamwork and knowing that they always have people around them who they can lean on.
SCHOOL: Menchaca Elementary. I was in 5th grade, about to go to 6th.
CAREER DREAMS:What do you want to be when you grow up?Probably a doctor or something.
LOVE OF THE GAME:What’s your favorite part about playing baseball?Just having fun, yeah.
FAVORITE POSITION:Pitcher. But I play other positions.
FAVORITE PLAYER:Who is your favorite baseball player?Of course, Babe Ruth.
RBI KIDS:One son, Marlin.
TIME with RBI:This is our first season.
PERSONAL VALUE:What do you think Marlin gains the most from being involved with RBI off of the ball field? He’s learned camaraderie and developed some friendships and some basic skill sets like discipline.
PROGRAM VALUE: As a parent, what do you like most about being involved with RBI?I like how RBI is set up. This is our first year, and I think it’s a great organization with what y’all are doing with the mentorship — and of course the home runs!
BASEBALL PARENT:What’s the hardest part about being a baseball parent? The heat! The summer heat!
GAMEDAY MUST-HAVE: What is something you have to have with you when you are watching a game? I always have to have my smartphone for the snap shots!
TIME with RBI:This is my fourth season with RBI.
BACKGROUND:Did you play sports growing up?Yes. I played football, basketball, baseball, soccer growing up.
FAVORITE RBI MEMORY:Do you have a favorite RBI memory so far?Probably two years ago, we were on this same field for the 3rd place game and it went into extra innings. One of our kids hit the game winning home run — his name was Angel.
PARENTS and PLAYERS: What do you think families and players gain the most from being involved with RBI? RBI Austin is a great, positive, encouraging environment. RBI Austin is very beginner-friendly for baseball, but players also have many good, positive influences from the coaches and volunteer staff. It’s a good place to come in the summer.
PROGRAM VALUE:What do you think you gain from being involved with RBI? If I ever leave Austin — no matter what I was doing work-wise — I will look back on my time with RBI and that’ll be what I miss the most. It’s very rewarding. It’s a lot of time, but it’s time well spent. I’ve gotten to know these kids for 4 years and it’s great.
CAREER DREAMS:What do you want to be when you grow up?A softball player. I’d play centerfield.
TEAMMATES:Who’s your best friend on the team?Brittany. She’s my best friend because she’s nice.
FAVORITE POSITION:Outfield. It’s my favorite because that’s where most of the balls go.
BEST ADVICE:What is something that you’ve learned from your coach?When I get out, I shouldn’t cry because there is still a lot more softball to go.
RBI KIDS: Two daughters, Samantha and Hayley.
TIME with RBI:This is actually our first season with RBI. I coached for 4-5 years and this is the first year I’ve been more of a parent than a coach.
PROGRAM VALUE:What do you think Samantha and Hayley gain the most from being involved with RBI? They’ve learned and developed a lot. They still take the game a little too seriously, so I have to remind them to have fun and go out there and be a kid. They need to remember to mentally and physically rest. So RBI has really given them a chance to have fun.
PROUD PARENT:When is a time when you were most proud of your daughters? Just academics in general. They’re A and B students. They work hard on the field and they’re good at transitioning that into the classroom. They’re quick to do their homework as soon as they get home because they know they have to make good grades to play. Their teachers all tell me that they’re leaders in the classroom so I’m really proud of that.
BEING A SOFTBALL PARENT: What is the hardest part about being a softball parent? The hardest part is when they lose because you have to help pick the girls up. They try so hard and sometimes they get down on themselves. I remind them that even when they leave it all on the field, they’re not always going to win. They’re still learning, so I have to tell them that and remind them that winning isn’t everything.
TIME with RBI:This is my first season with RBI.
BACKGROUND:Did you play sports growing up?I played baseball, football, track, and basketball. I’ve always had the best coaches and I felt called to coaching. So far I’ve coached junior high sports, and when I heard about RBI through the Austin Stone I was eager to get involved.
FAVORITE RBI MEMORY:Do you have a favorite RBI memory so far?Last week we played against the Bears, and I’m pretty sure they were the #1 seed. We took them out with only 6 players. Our girls worked really hard for it and it was a huge jump from the 2nd week to the 3rd week.
PARENTS and PLAYERS: What do you think families and players gain the most from being involved with RBI?I’d say they can come here knowing that we love their child more than we love winning the game. When we show up, we’re here to make sure their child gets better physically, spiritually, and mentally and that’s more important than winning.
PROGRAM VALUE:What do you think you gain from being involved with RBI?I’ve gained so much. I’ve learned how to communicate with kids and how to be patient. I’ve never been great with words, but when you coach girls, you learn you have to affirm them and tell them good job. I’m learning to be more gentle and tactful in the way that I coach.
SCHOOL: I go to a private school called Redeemer Lutheran. It’s for babies through 8th grade.
CAREER DREAMS: What do you want to be when you grow up? A major league baseball player. I would want to play outfield or 2nd base. Probably left field.
TEAMMATES: Who’s your best friend on the team? Gio. Gio and Braelyn. Braelyn is #9.
FAVORITE BASEBALL PLAYER:I have two. Aaron Judge and Jose Altuve. Aaron Judge plays right field for the Yankees and Altuve plays 2nd base for the Astros.
BEST ADVICE: What is something that you’ve learned from your dad? Hustle a lot in any sport. Coaches notice that. Like when you sprint to your position they notice that you’re working hard.
Parent: Jimmy Naumann
RBI KIDS:One son, Jamie, is 12 years old.
TIME with RBI:I’ve known Matt since before RBI started. I’ve always coached, and I’ve been on the board a little. This is my first season not coaching. He’s played since he was 7 so this is probably our 5th season with RBI.
PROGRAM VALUE: What do you think Jamie gains the most from being involved with RBI? He goes to a private school so it’s pretty small pool of people. It’s awesome for Jamie to get to meet all different kids and know them for years and play with them through different seasons. The baseball side is good but socially RBI is fantastic for him.
PROUD PARENT: When is a time when you were most proud of Jamie? To be completely honest, there was a time when he was getting picked on and I told him to solve it by beating the kid up. He kept saying no, and when I asked why he wouldn’t, he said ‘Jesus wouldn’t want that.’ It was really eye opening because he’s right and I got to learn from him in that situation. That was awesome for me because we read these bible stories every night and go to church but I got to see it in action right in front of me.
FAVORITE BASEBALL MEMORY: Do you have a favorite baseball memory? I never thought I would have a son because I was a little bit older when we had him so everything we’ve done together is so special to me. He’s an only child and since he was 2 years old we spend tons of time together just hitting in the cage or at home. I found a pendant that has bats shaped like a cross and it says I swing for him. That means a lot to me because that’s what we’ve done. We hit, we pray, and it’s been unbelievable for me. It’s something I never thought I’d have so I try to stop regularly and thank God. It’s great when he has a great game but just our time working out together is so special to me.
Coach: Ricky Gomez
TIME with RBI:This is actually my first season with RBI. So far it’s good. The kids are great, they have great attitudes, and they love baseball. I got involved with RBI because baseball was a big part of my life growing up and I really wanted to get involved in something like this.
BACKGROUND: So you played sports growing up? I did. My dad was my coach and I’m not as hard on them as he was on me, but it was a bond that I remember to this day. It taught me a lot of values and a lot about life and I wanted an opportunity to give back to the kids and have some fun with it too. My hidden talent is actually bowling. I was the captain of the bowling team and we won four city championships.
FAVORITE RBI MEMORY: Do you have a favorite RBI memory so far? I did today. Today, for the first time, I passed out a game ball to someone that I thought really demonstrated the RBI values, uplifted his teammates, and gave it his all. I gave it to Ty and when I gave it to him, he had the biggest smile on his face. It meant a lot to see that and see how much these kids care. With baseball, a lot of kids get down on themselves and he had a rough start but he kept his head in it and pulled it together.
LEARNING FROM THE PLAYERS: What’s something that you’ve learned from Jamie? Jamie is the nicest kid I’ve ever met. After each game and practice, he comes up to me and says “thank you.” With little things like that, you realize that everyone’s watching you. He reminds me to just be kind to people. Sometimes as a coach, it gets to be a little difficult, but watching Jamie is a reminder to be kind no matter what.
PROGRAM VALUE: What do you think you gain from being involved with RBI? Definitely getting better with kids. You also cherish things and appreciate things a little more. After my first game, I called my parents to thank them. As a kid you don’t realize everything your parents do for you and although I’m not a parent, it’s given me the value of being appreciative and supportive. You never know whose life you can impact. In just 3 weeks, RBI has already given me something that will stay with me forever.
COLLEGE DREAMS: Do you want to go to college? Where? What do you want to study? I want to go to Texas State and study abroad in Barcelona. I want to double major in Dance Education and Business Management so I can own my own dance studio.
FAVORITE SOFTBALL MEMORY:I got to meet my best friend, #12, through RBI. She’s really close with my cousin so if she’s close with my family then she’s close with me.
SEASON GOALS: What are you looking most forward to this season? I’m looking forward to getting to the championship with some of the best people I know.
Parent: Stacie Cooks
RBI KIDS: One daughter, Elesia, is 15 years old.
TIME with RBI:This is our first year playing with RBI. Her cousin has been playing for RBI for about 5 years and she wanted to join her.
PROGRAM VALUE: What do you think your child gains the most from playing with RBI? Sense of community and being able to fit in which isn’t always easy at 15. She’s enjoying just being on a team and the girls she plays with are like her family. The coaches really look out for her and she feels like she can trust them.
PROUD PARENT: Tell us about a time you were most proud of Elesia.I’m most proud when I see her participating on a team. I think all of us should be working together for the greater good, so being on a team really helps because they’re all separate parts working together. Renee has a huge heart and being on a team really brings that out.
BEING A SOFTBALL PARENT: What’s the hardest part about being a baseball/softball parent? The hardest part is helping my daughter identify healthy ways to respond when the team doesn’t do well or when she feels she didn’t do well. It’s hard to see your child upset. Being able to cope with loss and framing it in a constructive way has been the hardest but is a good life skill.
GAMEDAY MUST-HAVE: What’s something you always have to have with you when you’re watching a game? It’s only my second game, so I’m learning, but I’d say some type of sun-protection, a lawn chair so I can move my seat to the shade, and snacks since I’m coming straight from work to the game.
Coach: Kentrell Thomas
TIME with RBI:This is my third season.
FAVORITE RBI MEMORY: My kids’ first season playing with RBI was also the first time they played organized baseball/softball. They won the championship that year.
PROGRAM VALUE: What do you think players and/or families gain the most from being involved with RBI? Meeting new friends, meeting new people, having fun, learning the game, and being shown that people care about them.
PERSONAL VALUE: What experiences that you’ve gained from being involved with RBI do you value the most? Learning the game. Really learning the game and learning how I can use what I know to help the kids. If I can help one, I’ve helped a lot.
BACKGROUND: Tell us about yourself. Did you play sports growing up? I’m from New Orleans. I played football and baseball but mostly I was in the band. I played trombone. The reason I got involved with RBI is my kids. I’m more of a fan but if I can help with coaching, why not? I also head coach a t-ball team that my youngest daughter is on. I have three kids: a 15-year-old, a 13-year-old, and a 5-year-old.