WINTER 1 REVIEW
At one of our Tuesday night practices I split the boys into two teams and had a competition. Each Moondog was assigned an opponent on the other team to compete against in all of our hitting and movement competitions; the winner earned a point for his team. The tally was kept on a whiteboard, updated live, and the energy was great! As the competition was winding down I saw the direction the final score was headed. Team A had a significant lead and the final hitting pair wouldn’t be able to change the outcome. So, while nobody was watching, I made a slight adjustment to the projected final score and suddenly we were tied. Everything came down to the final two Moondogs swinging it. And with the whole game on the line (or so they thought), the pair rose to the occasion and set combined four personal hitting records! I told them all the real score before I sent them home but I made sure to highlight that they are ALL capable of exceptional growth and performance, even when the pressure is on. Here’s just how much the average Moondog grew over the Winter 1 Season:
From their first game of Quality Hit to their last, the average Moondog increased his maximum batted ball exit velocity by 8.3 mph and his maximum batted ball distance by 42.2 feet. That's a huge improvement! One Moondog even jumped 19 mph in his exit velocity, while another added 107.3 feet to his max distance! It’s hard not to get excited about the boys’ hard work getting rewarded like that.
Improvement wasn’t limited to just hitting, as the Moondogs made huge strides in their movement training and increased their average Olympic Score by 8.9 points. The top performer even leaped up the leaderboard by 19.1 points!
Outstanding work Moondogs! More records and improvements are just around the corner in the Winter 2 season.
Moondogs Baseball began in 2014 to fill a need in the baseball community.
Recreational baseball was on the decline - enrollment was down and volunteer coaches were hard to find. Parents had discovered that travel baseball was not a better experience. There were plenty of issues there - travel and the associated costs, constant last minute schedule changes, entire weekends lost to one tournament, non-competitive games, poorly run practices, unstable team environment just to name a few.
Parents and players had no place else to turn for a better baseball experience. They had to either find a team or create their own. They
There was a need for something better. Something that offered a stable, local situation with plenty of well-structured practices and games that were fun and competitive. An environment that provided a great experience for the player and the parents without turning the family upside down.
A different brand of baseball.
So Dan Kopitzke, founder of K-Zone Academy, created Moondogs Baseball. It fills the middle ground between rec and travel. It takes the best elements of rec (local and convenient) and travel (higher level of play) and adds in so much more for an unparalleled experience.
Fun and challenging practices AND games
Enthusiastic, knowledgeable coaches
A focus on skill development
A sense of community and belonging
A player prepared for the next level
Moondogs Baseball is for the 7th to 9th grade baseball player that enjoys baseball and wants to be his best. It’s a league designed to develop the skills of the player using tested and validated methods. Our professional and knowledgeable staff will guide and instruct the players on the fundamental aspects of the game and more.
Each practice is geared toward improving the player’s skills and understanding of the game.
Each player is evaluated in all areas (throwing, catching, hitting, speed, agility, etc.) identifying their current level of performance.
The appropriate level of training/practice is then assigned.
Their performance is objectively measured with immediate feedback provided.
Individual progress is properly tracked and assessed.
The Moondogs experience is about the boys.
They will learn to play the game of baseball as it is meant to be played. We strive to have a positive, lasting impact on them as players and as young men. Parents should support this by being a quiet yet consistent, source of encouragement, delivering them on time, rested and well nourished, and just enjoying watching them develop.
Safety, is always priority. We track he number of throws, swings, and other training exercises ensuring no-one is over-using their body. We encourage communication and help them to "listen" to their bodies.
Fun is crucial to learn. The complicated physical and mental aspects of the game are much easier to grasp in an enjoyable environment. Regardless of how far into the future their baseball careers extend we want them to look back fondly and with pride on their time as a Moondog.
Player development is maximized. Game days are designed to maximize player development, in large part by increased at bats and increased field play. Specifically we do this by eliminating certain factors that hinder rather than help in developing quality skills and good habits: Game day machine pitch- at this age these young men are still learning to throw. Having them pitch is counter-productive as it translates to few hits, very little field play, lots of standing around, With our structure, at bats result in a ball in play 95% of the time, providing batter, baserunner and fielder enormous opportunities to learn and develop their skills.