Category Archives: RBI News

Relationships Over Programs: Why in the World (Series)?!

Relationships Over Programs:
Why in the World (Series)?!

After spraining his ankle three days before the RBI Southwest Regional, Oscar Zamorano feared that his spot on the RBI Austin 18U Regional team was in jeopardy.

If he wasn’t on the regional roster and RBI Austin advanced, he’d be ineligible for the MLB RBI World Series.

Oscar had been loyal to the team all summer long, faithfully showing up to practices and games on time, and always supporting his teammates.

Instead of replacing Oscar with someone who could compete that weekend, the coaches decided to keep Oscar on the roster.

Why in the world would they do that during such a competitive tournament?

After not having pitched in almost three weeks, Oscar threw 3 1/3 innings of no-hit baseball before giving way to a reliever during RBI Austin’s first game at the RBI World Series against Arizona RBI. 


Oscar, a first-generation American citizen from Del Valle, is intelligent, hardworking, and a little on the quiet side. 

Sometimes feeling caught in between two worlds — his family speaks Spanish at home, while Oscar speaks English everywhere else.

Oscar’s family did not have the resources to afford an expensive, high-level select baseball program, but after being discovered in RBI’s summer league in 2017, he was chosen to participate in RBI’s Fall Player Development Academy.

This following spring in his senior season, Oscar was named a 1st-Team All-District Pitcher.

He was then chosen to represent RBI Austin in the RBI Southwest Regional, where he would compete against Houston Astros RBI, Texas Rangers RBI, and New Orleans RBI.

Over the course of the summer, Oscar established himself as one of the top pitchers on the RBI Austin regional team and even received his first offer to play at a junior college!

Since both of Oscar’s parents work Monday to Friday and were sometimes unable to get off work, RBI Austin Coach Mark Price would pick him up in Del Valle, and together they’d drive to the team’s pre-regional warmup tournaments in Waco and San Antonio.

“At first I thought Oscar was just a quieter kid, which in some ways he is, but as the miles wore on, I learned about Oscar’s bicultural daily life and how that impacts his demeanor and relationships.

We also talked about the generational differences in country music (Del Valle is out in the country…) and how two-stepping is a fun, natural way to strike up a conversation with a girl,” shared Coach Mark.

Coach Mark meets with the umpires and Arizona RBI coach before the first World Series game at Target Field. 


You don’t get these kind of opportunities to know someone — to be let into someone’s life — by caring first and foremost about a baseball program or about winning a game. 

Conversations about pitching techniques and batting stances are helpful on the field, but they alone don’t produce trust, rapport, or depth in a relationship.

These opportunities come in the unplanned, out-of-the-way drives up and down I-35, in the airplane rides to Minnesota, in the extra spaces when coaches go out of their way to spend time with their players and to ask them questions.

In the conversations about two-stepping, financial burdens, cultural disparity, country music, language barriers, insecurities, and dating — this is where trust is built, where relationships are made, where rapport is established, and where young men get to look up to older men for advice, wisdom, and guidance. 

In choosing to invest in a player beyond just what he can produce for your team, in caring about the character of a young man — this is where kids are engaged and developed into game-changers in their community.

Because of Coach Mark, Oscar was shown that perseverance, dedication, selflessness, teamwork, and sacrifice are an imperative complement to skill, strength, and technique. 

2019 Now at Bat Host Committee

BIG NEWS!

We have some stellar individuals joining RBI Austin’s
Now at Bat Host Committee!

We are thrilled to announce our 2019 Now at Bat Host Committee!

These men and women are champions of RBI Austin’s 1,312 kids and expectant to see our youth lead the transformation of their communities!

They believe in our kids, our organization, and our mission, and are playing a vital role in ensuring RBI Austin’s continued success through Now at Bat.

View 2019 Now at Bat Details

Have any questions about Now at Bat?! Want to get involved in this year’s event? Interested in sponsorship opportunitiesContact Amanda Terry at amanda.terry@rbiaustin.org or (512) 537-7105.

This is one of our favorite nights of the year, and we’d love for you to be a part of it. 

View 2019 Now at Bat Sponsorship Opportunities

 

We hope to see you on January 24, 2019 at the JW Marriott!

Austin’s MLB Reviving Baseball In Inner-Cities 18U Team Wins Bid to RBI World Series in Minneapolis

Austin’s MLB Reviving Baseball In Inner-Cities 18U Team Wins Bid to RBI World Series in Minneapolis

Baseball is very much alive in Austin, Texas.

This past weekend, Austin’s MLB Reviving Baseball in Inner-Cities affiliate — RBI Austin — hosted the MLB RBI Southwest Regional where teams from four organizations — Houston Astros RBI, New Orleans RBI, Texas Rangers RBI, and RBI Austin — competed for the opportunity to advance to the 2018 RBI World Series in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Regional included three divisions: 15U Baseball, 18U Baseball, and 18U Softball.

RBI Southwest Regional Champions

RBI Austin’s 18U Regional team defeated Houston Astros RBI 4-0 on Sunday, July 29th at Dell Diamond to win the tournament.  After securing three wins in the previous games over the weekend, the Austin boys pulled off this final victory to land them an all-expenses-paid trip to Minnesota to compete against other RBI teams from around the United States as well as Uganda, Curacao, and Puerto Rico.

Eric Worden (McCallum High School ‘18) pitched a complete game shutout on Sunday, leading RBI Austin to its 4-0 Regional championship game victory. Outfielder Harrison Lee (LBJ/LASA High School ‘18) competed at the plate throughout the weekend with three triples. First baseman Aidan Martinez (Hays High School ‘19) set the tone in the first game of the Regional with a walk-off single in extra innings over Houston.

Prior to RBI Austin defeating Houston on Sunday to earn its first 18U RBI Regional championship in program history, Houston had won the 18U RBI Southwest Regional championship in 10 of the past 11 years. Houston Astros RBI alumni include MLB players Anthony Rendon, Chris Young, Carl Crawford, and James Loney.

MLB RBI Regionals + World Series

Over the past several weeks, more than 110 RBI baseball and softball teams competed in Regional tournaments across seven U.S. regions and one World region.

The 26th annual RBI World Series will be hosted by the Minnesota Twins in Minneapolis, Minnesota on August 5-10 and includes tournament games, workout days, banquets, community service events and more. During this five day competition, the RBI Austin team will participate in a showcase where they can further demonstrate their skills.

The MLB RBI program is designed to promote the games of baseball and softball to young men and women in underserved and diverse communities where, often times, sports programs and initiatives are lacking or unobtainable.

MLB Clubs have drafted more than 200 RBI participants throughout the program’s 30-year history, and many others have been given the opportunity for higher education through baseball and softball scholarships. RBI currently serves young men and women in over 300 programs in approximately 200 cities worldwide. MLB and its Clubs have designated more than $40 million worth of resources to the RBI program, and all 30 Clubs support RBI leagues (https://www.mlb.com/news/more-than-110-baseball-softball-teams-in-to-compete-in-rbi-regional-tournaments/c-286514254).

Sweet Glimpses of Transformation

Sweet Glimpses of Transformation

Whether you see it or not, your time as a volunteer is making an impact on the kids you serve.

They are watching you.

They are learning from you. 

Coach Sharon Thomas and her husband Kentrell have been leading their RBI Austin softball girls for the past 4 years with an intentional focus on developing both strong softball players and strong, Christian women. 

Their steadfastness is impacting the young women on their 16U Softball Dodgers team. 

The team’s three leaders — their captain, assistant captain, and team chaplain — are volunteering as umpires this summer for our Jr. RBI Softball divisions.

Coach Sharon shared about one experience of witnessing her girls developing into strong women. 

“One Saturday, I walked up to the game they were umpiring, and there they were huddled on the field praying together — just the three of them.”

“This is what we are helping them to learn. We do this as a team before our own games, and to see them doing this together on their own was really special.”

Sometimes the Lord is sweet and He shows us glimpses of transformation in one short summer. 

Sometimes He is sweet and gives us those glimpses after several years of being faithful to the relationships He’s put in front of us. 

Sometimes the Lord is just as sweet, and we never see the impact that our time, efforts, or prayers have in the lives of those we’ve cared for and invested in. 

Please know that whether you’ve seen it or not, your faithfulness as a volunteer is impacting future generations of inner-city Austin youth. 

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Events

Have you been running around all summer? Slow down, throw on your ball cap, grab some concession stand food, enjoy America’s favorite pastime, and see your impact in action at the ballpark! Attend one of our upcoming events. We’d love to see you there!

MLB RBI Southwest Regional Tournament

Cheer on our 15U + 18U RBI Austin Regional teams as they compete against RBI programs from across the southwest region — New Orleans RBI, Rangers RBI, and Astros RBI!

MLB RBI Southwest Regional Tournament: Featured Pool Play
July 28th at Concordia University
11400 Concordia University Drive, Austin, TX 78726

MLB RBI Southwest Regional Tournament: 15U + 18U Baseball Championship Games
July 29th at Dell Diamond (8:30am and 11am games)
3400 East Palm Valley, Round Rock, TX 78665

View the full regional schedule.

Triple-A for a Day

The Round Rock Express brings their big league environment and gameday crew to our Jr. RBI playoff games! Join us as we celebrate the end of the season together!

Jr. RBI Playoff Games with the Round Rock Express
August 4th at North Austin Optimist (5pm and 7:30pm games)
1105 Morrow Street, Austin, TX 78757

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. 

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.

RBI Austin Baseball Players Awarded for Successful High School Season

RBI Austin Baseball Players Awarded for Successful High School Season

Congratulations to some of our RBI Austin 18U Fall Academy Team players for their successful school season. We couldn’t be more proud that these young men are a part of our program.

Awards don’t define our success, but these guys are great ball players, even better people, and they each worked hard to earn these accolades.

  • Luis Adame, Lanier HS, 25-5A 1st Team All-District Pitcher
  • Sam DiCarlo, LBJ/LASA HS, 25-5A 1st Team All-District Pitcher
  • Walker Kohler, LBJ/LASA HS, 25-5A 1st Team All-District Catcher
  • Harrison Lee, LBJ/LASA HS, 25-5A 1st Team All-District SS
  • Victor Mendoza, Austin HS, 25-5A Newcomer of the Year
  • Nate Moore, LBJ/LASA HS, 25-5A 2nd Team All-District OF
  • Oscar Zamorano, Del Valle HS, 14-6A 1st Team All-District Pitcher

We’re looking forward to see what the upcoming summer season has in store for them.

Summer Volunteer Roles

Summer Volunteer Roles

You’ve heard it before, “Teamwork makes the dream work.”

This couldn’t be more true for RBI Austin’s summer leagues.

As we’ve grown from 118 kids to more than 1,171 kids, so has our need for gameday volunteers.

So whether you are behind the scenes assisting with gameday logistics, helping keep score on the sidelines, or in the thick of the action with the kids in the dugout, our summer volunteers are invaluable.

If you’ve been on the fence about serving and wondering just exactly what our various volunteer opportunities look like, check out of summer volunteer roles below.

HEAD COACH

A day in the life: You’re leading the charge for your RBI Austin team. You’re working with your assistant coaches to make sure that practices have a plan, that kids are having fun, and that families are engaged and invited into the team. Typically, head coaches have been involved with RBI Austin before and/or are familiar with RBI Austin’s mission + culture.

Time commitment: 1-2 games a week plus one practice a week

ASSISTANT COACH

A day in the life: You’re helping your head coach run the show. This can entail corralling kids, running drills at practice, being in charge of the batting lineup in the dugout. Head coaches cannot coach a team alone, and you play an essential, supportive role in the experience that RBI Austin players and parents have during the summertime. No baseball or softball experience is required, and we will make sure you get trained to do your role well.

Time commitment: 1-2 games a week plus one practice a week

SCOREKEEPER

A day in the life: Do you prefer to be more on the sidelines with a little less commitment than coaching? Scorekeepers help us make sure that games are running smoothly and being documented. You will be posted up behind home plate watching the game, keeping the “book”, and enjoying some summer sun at the ballpark. No experience is required, and we will make sure you get trained to do your role well.

Time commitment: We ask that Scorekeeping volunteers serve at least 5 games during the summer!

UMPIRE

A day in the life:  You keep our games moving — literally. Umpires will be trained in specific divisions and will be provided with all of the rules, regulations, and information they need to make sure that RBI Austin games are running smoothly and according to league rules.

Time commitment: We ask that Umpires serve at least 5 games during the summer!

SOUND/ATMOSPHERE  

A day in the life: You’re responsible for bringing the gameday environment! Who doesn’t love the ballpark atmosphere with music and hearing players being announced as they walk up to the plate? Sound/atmosphere volunteers assist with queuing walk-up music and announcing players and teams.

Time commitment: We ask that Sound/atmosphere volunteers serve at least 5 games during the summer!

FIELD MAINTENANCE  

A day in the life: A lot goes on behind the scenes to ensure that our RBI Austin kids have playable fields during the summer season. You’re responsible for helping maintain field quality that gives our players a sense of pride in where they get to play. Typically field maintenance tasks include clearing weeds from the infield dirt, building the mound, clearing trash, mowing, and edging.

Time commitment: As needed throughout the summer!

Attend a volunteer orientation

Ready to learn more? Attend one of our upcoming volunteer orientations: