By Steve LaMontia, Director of Communications
Jim Tamarack has been a card-carrying member of the Savannah Adult Baseball League for nearly 30 years and is also the founder of Baseball 4 Africa, a charitable organization whose goal is to further enhance and promote the baseball experience in Africa with a series of annual instruction sessions and league formation. Jim reached out to us with a 2021 update of his work and a plea for some additional volunteers or equipment.
As mentioned, Jim is one of the original members of the Savannah league and also frequents MSBL national tournaments, most recently the 2019 MSBL Fall Classic in Florida. Below is Jim’s plea to his fellow MSBL members in his own words.
I started Baseball 4 Africa in 2004 and except for 2020 I have been back every season since to Kenya. There are two older programs in Africa. Major League Baseball has supported an effort in South Africa and Richard Stanley in Uganda, a couple of years before me. There seems to be some new growth of baseball in Ghana, Nigeria, Tanzania, Ethiopia and sometimes with players sharing from the embassy staff from USA and Japan.
I also have an excellent partnership with ‘Pitch in for Baseball and Softball’, a warehouse size equipment recycler outside Philadelphia.
After more than 15 years I can tell you the one thing I always thought would be great was to have an MSBL group of players go to Africa for a week or so together and play and instruct, as many of my schools could fit in a week or so. Hopefully with their wives/partners they could also stay and do a wildlife safari. I have had a few young men volunteer and they have had a wonderful time and experience.
I admit I am not much into marketing or hustling to make this idea happen before and my season is dictated by the Kenya school year, which is our summer and it interferes with MSBL League schedules. The 2021 season revolves around a two-week training period prior and hosting the Kenya National Baseball Showcase Tournament on July 31. If ever a group of nine players or so from USA and or Canada was to join me, that would be a terrific effort in spreading baseball at the grass roots level in an emerging market.
You can contact Jim directly at 732-306-7118 or email email@example.com
You can visit their Facebook page at https://m.facebook.com/Baseball4Africa/
You can also view a YouTube video of their work by clicking on the picture below: