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Latest news from Coach Prater


"News" Feb-June '03
"News" Sept-Nov '03
"News" Jan-Aug '04
"Family Life"
F A Q's
Game observations
Player Profiles
Daily News....."Family Life"

March 3rd
"You don't merely want to be considered just the best of the best. You want to be considered the only one who does what you do."  -- Jerry Garcia
Rain, Rain, go AWAY!! Does let the "rainy blues" get you down!!
I have been busy working "behind the scenes" putting together OUR FABULOUS summer program. Andy Ford from Perfect Game sent me the following e-mail a few days ago. He wrote:

What do you have for top players in the Austin area that are high level prospects?   Andy Ford - Perfect Game

Curious to know how you would answer that question?  Would you know where to start? Past stats; Projection; Last week's success; How well guys played in Select League......

I am out in California right now PROMOTING the HECK out of Baseball Solutions and the Austin Baseball Club. I am hosting workouts at Peppedine University three days this week. One of their assistant coaches, Rick Hirtensteiner, was a teammate of mine with the Marlins. He remembers the last time I was out here with a group of ABC players...... one of which was Matt Goebel. Matt was really interested in Pepperdine at the time. Tulane entered the picture and Matt chose Tulane. This past season, Mr.Goebel BEAT Pepperdine on the mound !!!! Needless to say, Coach Hirtensteiner refers to him as "The one that got away". Coach has made it REAL clear that he wants to be the first "to know" about the ABC ball players :) 

UCLA; USC; Dean Stotz, Stanford; Steve Rousy, Cal State Northridge; Robbie Moen, Loyola Marimont; Chris Johnson, LA city college; Chris Cicuto, Glendale JUCO; Skip Claprood, Citrus JUCO; etc........

Anyone interested in California baseball ?

ABC summer 2004 update

The summer schedule is coming together nicely and I would like to begin to hear any questions you might have. It is looking more and more promising that there will be a league formed for HS teams to play Tues-Thurs and then play with ABC in Showcases on weekend's. Several have mailed in their $300 summer deposit check made out to ABC. I am requesting that ALL those anticipating playing on an ABC roster do so at this time. I can speculate all I want as to "who is in & who is not". Not going "down that road". Step up to the plate and get your deposit in. Perfect Game wants their $1500 per team; Omaha $800; U of H $750; etc

At this time I am coordinating schedules for the following teams.

(1) 2007 graduate team 5 tournaments; ABC league games; Showcases 

(1) 2006 graduate team 5 tournaments; Collegiate showcases (Perfect Game, TCU, UT, TBD); ABC league games

(1) 2005 graduate team 5 tournaments; Collegiate showcases (Perfect Game, College World Series-Omaha,U of H, UT, Baylor,TBD)

(1) 2004 / 2005 mix team 5 tournaments; Collegiate showcases (Perfect Game, A&M, San Jac, Sam Houston, TBD)

St.Edward's will be hosting a couple of Showcases and ABC will be well represented. All tournaments are scheduled in June & July.

We have more players in the Baseball Solutions year round training program than we have spots for on the 4 ABC summer team rosters. The coaches and I are examining necessitating a 5th team, that decision will be driven by you. I am not going to head ache or stay up late at night wondering or worrying about who I am responsible for facilitating summer baseball. I am 100% fully committed and responsible for ANY and ALL who have the desire to play for ABC this summer. Those in the year round Baseball Solutions training program take precedence over ANYONE who is not. Individual agendas or political head aches are a thing of the past. Click on the following link to review my message from a few months ago:

Baseball Solutions & ABC together have the best programs in town and we are privileged to have you involved.


Baseball Solutions reports to Texas Scouts Association (all 30 major league teams), Perfect Game advisory committee, NCAA Association of Baseball Coaches of America, NJCAA.

Amongst your peers

The time is now gang. There doesn't seem to be a day that passes where I am not reminded of one of the biggest "WHY'S" behind why I do what I do and that is fulfilling life long COLLEGE BASEBALL DREAMS.

Campbell Roche (2004 - St.Andrew's HS) and I have been working closely on his "short list" of schools. I have been on the phone with Harvard Baseball head coach, Joe Walsh, recommending the HECK out of Campbell and his character, academic standing, and baseball ability. Coach Walsh makes a point to see ABC play twice a year at the Perfect game events and is always very complimentary of the boys (thanks guys!) Campbell and his family have been taking a practice role in this process for two years now visiting college campuses that he has expressed interest in as well as helping ME HELP THEM.

Mike Hancock (2005 - Stony Point) recently sent me over the names of several schools he is corresponding with and I am following up with them by writing recommendation letters and making phone calls. PROACTIVE !!

I will be sending updated profile information and summer baseball schedules to our network of collegiate coaches and scouts. Updated SAT or other academic info would be appreciated to get everyone's profile up to speed.

Have you been keeping up with the steroids stuff in baseball ?
FREAKING STAY AWAY FROM STEROIDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Enough said and that's all I have to say about that.
This weeks schedule
Beginning in March the weekly SWINGTHERAPY schedule adjusts slightly to work around Tuesday game nights.
Monday's will remain the south SWINGTHERPY night (6:30 &  7:30) with Wednesday as a make-up class night.
Wednesday's have become the north SWINGTHERAPY night (6:30 & 7:30) with Monday's as a make-up night.
BOTH FACILITIES ARE OPEN Mon-Thurs or unlimited hitting
Click here to see the updated March activity breakdown:
This Sunday we will pick up with week 3 of 6 week "Velocity / Throwing program"
first 30 min.: Active warm-up (upper and lower body / ab's)
next 30 min: station work ; 3 stations ;  10 minutes each
  1. Station 1 - Thera band tubing drills
  2. Station 2 - Throwing drill in cage w/ coach
  3. Station 3 - Throwing drill in cage w/ coach
last 30 min: application drills specific to position
P / C / INF / OF
SOUTH workout - 1:00-2:30
North workout - 3:30-5:00
**cages will be open early and late for extra swings
"Family Highlights"
  • Jake Walls (Austin High) had an awesome game against Pflugerville. Jake gunned down two runners & was "textbook" as a parent of another Austin High player put it.
  • Monday night Bowie catcher, Nick Spears, went 2-3 with a single and a double.
  • Westlake freshman, Geoff Ellis, hit a double and walked twice in his last game.
  • Reed Woytek was impressive in an 8 inning performance on the mound over Abilene Cooper. 63 out of 85 pitches were strikes
  • Jordan Danks was 10-14 with a homerun in the Rock Hardball Classic
  • Garrett Blount was lights out on the mound in relief - 6 K's in three innings
  • David Stratton hit a home run down at the Humble tournament
Now I know there is a LOT MORE going on out there so..........send me some stuff :)
Thursday Jan 15
Rain is going to wash out the Saturday skills testing. Check your e-mail for updates.
We will be meeting over at the south warehouse.
Monday Jan 5th
Our annual "Scout Day" yesterday was a huge success !
The following people were part of our advisory staff at the workout:
Tom Allison - scout Milwaukee Brewers
John Bonafay- scout Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Bill Price- scout Pittsburgh Pirates
Andrew Prater- scout Milwaukee Brewers
John Danks- 1st round draft Texas Rangers, former ABC
Mamon Tucker- 1st round draft Baltimore Orioles, former ABC
Ty Davis- Vanderbilt Univ RHP, former ABC
Matt Goebel- Tulane Univ RHP, former ABC
Jimmy Thoma- Dallas Baptist Univ, former ABC
to name a few..........
Thank you GUYS !
Over 90 ball players were on hand for the workout and seminars.
Thursday Dec 11
Hope your week is going well. What a TREMENDOUS time we had at the annual Christmas fellowship! We planned for over 100 people and we had just enough food and rinks. Thank you to everyone wo brought goodies !
Check the December activity schedule for updates.
Thanks for allowing me to have the opportunity to get to know you and your family :)
Friday Dec 5th
The phone just doesn't seem to stop ringing......regardless of the time of
year. I just hung up the phone with Jaime Mabe of Wake Forest University and
on my voice mail right now is a message from Stanford University coach Dean
Stotz. A few weeks ago I sat down with Tommy Harmon, University of Texas.
Coach Kingston, Tulane University, recently chatted about '05 & '06
prospects. My former college roommate, now scouting with the Philadelphia
Phillies,  inquired about the ABC family earlier today as well as the staff
at Baseball America / Perfect Game. If you have not visited the Perfect Game
website yet, take a minute now

Over the course of the past few weeks, as you know, I took the time to host
a college recruiting workshop for anyone interested in attending. A large
percentage of the ABC family attended and some invited friends and guests.
The fruits of that meeting are beginning to show. Families have begun to
empower themselves in with task of finding "life" after high school
baseball. For example, Coach Mabe (Wake Forest) and I talk and exchange
information on several occasions a year. Today, he specifically called in
response to a letter that one of the ABC players recently wrote to convey
his interest in playing for the Demon Deacons. They are looking for a 2004
graduate third baseman or 1st baseman. This ABC player plays 3rd base......
Because this ball player is at the field workouts, hitting workouts, and
game opportunities each week I can openly and honestly speak of his skills,
work ethic, talent level, attitude, improvements, drive, and his passion for
the game.

Some of you heard Sean Casey (All-Star 1st baseman for the Cincinnati Reds)
tell his college recruiting experience in person down in Florida. Others may
have heard me tell it at one of the recent work shops. In summary, he began
his senior season of baseball without ANY interest from collegiate
institutions. Near the completion of his senior year, upon the suggestion of
his HS coach, he hand wrote about 15-20 letters to schools he was interested
in. Two responded. One was the University of Richmond (Division 1), the
Spiders. They had seen him play during the summer and offered him a small
partial scholarship (annual tuition was in the $20-30,000 range) He enrolled
in the fall and went on to be a 3rd round draft pick for the Cleveland
Indians. Now he plays in the Big Leagues and makes millions of dollars a
year !

To be apathetic and remain ignorant about the processes that help get
athletes from one level to the next is inexcusable. Unless you have a
passion for something, it is difficult to accomplish anything. This applies
to what ever you want it to, but especially baseball. Coaches have a PASSION
for what they do. It is their life. Coaching, recruiting, winning
championships, trips to the world series, field maintenance, reputation,
etc...... They demand passion out of those around them.
A passion that prompts a college coach to pick up the phone and call others
to inquire about an athlete that might help strengthen their team. A high
school coach who spends extra time on a mower or tractor so that come the
first day of practice the facilities represent the integrity he instills
both on the field and off. There is a constant tone OF

Many people ask HOW to do something. I am happy to tell them, teach them,
give them instruction, etc... The longer I am involved with developing high
school ballplayers I realize that regardless of how many times I tell or
offer to tell anyone HOW (in training sessions, recruiting workshops, parent
scout workshops) they often do not do it or even take advantage of the
I am beginning to realize that it's not the HOW TO, it's the WHY I do
something that is more important. It is the WHY that inspires you to do the
Without a strong enough WHY even the easiest HOW TO can be to hard.

HOW TO improve your batting skills
HOW TO improve your fielding skills
HOW TO improve your arm strength
HOW TO improve your technical skills (what to do when)
HOW TO see your ball player through the eyes of a scout
HOW TO get involved with the college recruiting process
HOW TO better understand the recruiting process
HOW TO get an honest evaluation of my ball players skills

All these HOW TO examples must be driven by a strong enough WHY.
The reason WHY the ball player I mentioned in my opening paragraph does
these HOW TO's is because he wants to play Division 1 baseball.
Why has he found a "home" where the education and development process is
provided year round ? Because he understands the nature of the "Baseball
World" he lives in. The climate, the competition, the fact that no one else
out there is going to "want it more" than him. The odds are stacked against
him....less than 6% of seniors enter the NCAA to play baseball as freshman.
His WHY is answered by his effort.

Why is baseball a year round activity for you?
or better yet,
Why not?

Coach Prater
Wednesday Nov 19 4:00pm
Updated activity breakdown has been posted. Please review game times and assignments.
Hope you re having a GREAT DAY !
see you @ practice
Monday 11:00pm
Just wanted to touch base regarding the Wednesday workout.
I have been watching the weather really close and it looks like the cold front will not move through until late Wednesday or possibly Thursday.
Workout times are 5:30 & 6:45.
We are scheduled to play a game @ 6:45. 

**In the event of rain Wednesday, the workout will move south to the warehouse for SOUTH players (5:30 & 6:45)
North players will have defensive workout Thursday @ 5:30 @ the north facility in the event of rain. 
You may wear red or blue tops with grey pants. Hint: sleeves !
I look forward to seeing you & thanks for letting me hang out !

Sunday Nov 9th 9:00am - NO GAME
More drizzle and rain throughout the night will not allow us to play out at St.Andrew's today.
2:30 workout @ the south facility or you may stop by the north facility @ 5:00 for batting only.
See you son !
Dress warm :)
Coach Prater
Saturday Nov 8th 4:00pm
The weather does not seem to be cooperating. I do not want to call the game off tomorrow just yet.... what you will need to do is check back HERE tomorrow before you head out to St.Andrew's. I will post HERE whether or not we will workout @ the SOUTH warehouse at 2:30.
Check back tomorrow .
Thanks for your flexibility :)
Thurday Nov 6  9:00pm
Date :  Thu, 06 Nov 2003 16:37:09 -0600
I feel compelled to remind you that participation and maximization of the programs I coordinate demand 100% cooperation and participation year round. I refuse to run a "buffet" or provide a "country club".
My efforts do not begin at 5:30 with the first training session and do not end on days when there are no classes scheduled. I constantly have you on my mind and thinking up strategies and "mediums" to better educate, teach, instruct, and prepare each player.
In today's baseball climate players are excelling and maturing at a pace that will leave many on the outside looking in.

Last year ABC beat the odds by having 10 ballplayers commit to Division 1 schools. Statistics say that less than 6% of high school seniors play Division 1 baseball as freshman. This year we have two already:
LHP Brady Robbins - Taylor HS; C Todd Gilfilan - Westwood.

Quit "tip-toeing" around with me and look YOURSELF in the mirror. Are you in or are you out ?
I wish every ball player the best and tremendous success, but please respect my efforts to concentrate on those who "have it in there blood" to be the best they can be and "ENJOY the RIDE" ever far it takes them. This program is not about professional or collegiate baseball or "how many times..." or "how far" or whatever. It's about life and the lessons that America's Pastime can teach us. It's more than a hitting session or defensive training and games once a week. If you have'nt picked up on that by now you're not breathing. I want to look into the eyes of people who I know I'm going to see every week for the next few YEARS not months. If I wanted it any different I would design it that way. Get into more conventional "lessons". Rent batting cages. Take a job with a major league organization full time.....or what ever.

This is not directed at "attendance" or "how many times" you must show up. That's for you to decide.
I just find it incredibly amusing when the words "burn out" come out of ball players who "take their game seriously". Talk to your high school coach about "burn out" or bring up "burn out" to that college coach you are trying to impress. Those guys are baseball 24/7. Take a minute to ponder what they go through to provide the quality of baseball experience that you enjoy or hope to someday.
FYI- one of the top 5 questions I am asked by HS coaches, college coaches, and scouts are who's workng when no one else is ? Who's down at the shop in Nov & Dec on a Thursday night ?
Actions speak louder than words.

Someone that I respect and who is very wise reminded me recently as he quietly listened to a frustrating situation in front of me and said "remember, you are in this and involved with others because you choose to be. With that comes responsibility and a willingness to serve. BUT, you DO have a choice and a say in who those people are".
A bit "harsh", but I took it to heart.

All is well with PRATERBALL. Just looking for a few good men.

thanks for listening
Saturday Nov 1 2:30 pm
Please take a minute to review the November and December activity breakdowns. Please advise of any conflicts regarding the scheduled weekend games. The rosters are set at 11 players per so if you have a conflict we need to be able to make some adjustments.
Thanks so much :)
Tuesday Oct 28 4:30 pm
Perfect game was a HUGE success ! Look for my game notes and recap.
Please review familiarize yourself with when & where you are to be for tomorrow's (Wed) workout. Enjoy your weekend off ! GO HORNS !!!!!
Monday Oct 20 5:00pm
The weekend Showcase at Texas Tech was OUTSTANDING ! Abc was well represented and I am extremely PROUD of the boys !!!!!!!
Pease take a minute to review the following info from Perfect Game.
ABC has had the pleasure of participating in Perfect Game events through the years..... WE'RE  IN  GOOD  COMPANY !!!

From: "World Wood Bat Newsletter"


To: Coach Prater

Subject: World Wood Bat Association Newsletter

Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 22:50:22 GMT


The Big One starts October 24 in Jupiter Florida. The Big One, of course, is the World Wood Bat/Perfect Game/Baseball America World Championship. This is the 6th edition of the World Championship and the event gets bigger every time.


 This year, 75 teams and over 1,500 players will be competing on the 13 fields at the Roger Dean Stadium Complex in Jupiter. There will be 3 teams from Puerto Rico, 2 teams from Canada and a team from the Dominican Republic represented, along with teams from 22 states and players from at least 43 states. If history is any guide, over 60% of the high school players to be selected in the top 10 rounds of the 2004 will be playing at the World Championship! It might be even more this year.

 That does not include the estimated 500-600 professional scouts, college recruiters and agents who will descend on Jupiter to watch the players perform.

  History also shows that the nationally assembled select teams have the best chance of winning the championship. Baseball America has won the title 2 of the last 3 years and returns with another outstanding group of prospects. But no one will forget 2 years ago when the Miami Sluggers stormed through the championship bracket on their way to an upset win. Nor the Puerto Rico Raiders last year, whose run to the semi-finals last year was backed by both a enthusiastic group of fans and a huge group of previously unrecognized talent.


 Adding to the competition this year is what Perfect Game USA officials are calling their best collection of talent ever. Perfect Game teams are assembled from prospects around the country who do not already play for teams competing in the event.

Saturday Oct 11th    7:30pm
Due to the rain today and the past several days we will be unable to get out
onto the field to play tomorrow (Sunday 12th)

The workout has been moved to the north training facility. Pitchers will throw
bull pens and we will work on situational hitting in the cages.

If you were scheduled to play at 2:00 tomorrow, you will report at 1:45
If yo were scheduled for the 4:00 game or the 6:00 workout you will report at

1:45 workout group
Brown Presley
Buchanan Reese
Cmerek Robbins
Danks Spears
Davis Stratton
Engstrom Thell
Gembler Victor
Hancock Williams
Imani Woytek R
Knight Woytek W
Lenz Zente
3:15 workout group
Aclin Raesz
Blount Roth
Blume Schneider
Crenwelge Smith
Davila Smith T
Dubose Stewart
Ellis Truesdale
Fowler Turner C
Green Wallace
Macinnes Walls
Matthews Warner
Purkhiser Wright

North facility is located on Anderson Mill rd.
Take 183 north and exit Anderson Mill. 1st light is Pond Springs and the
warehouse is on the NW corner behind Northwest Christian Church.

*Sunday games will be made up Wednesday. 18U game will be from 5:30 - 7:45; 16U game 7:45 - 9:45.

See you tomorrow
Wednesday 10/8  11:30am
As long as it is not RAINING at your designated workout time at NW Pony (5:30 or 6:30) we will have our workout there. In the event that it is raining at your designated time:
south players head to south warehouse at scheduled time
5:30 group
6:30 group
north players we will workout tomorrow (Thurs) at north facility during same workout times
5:30 group
Buchanan,Danks,Engstrom,Gembler,hancock,Woytek R, Woytek W,Zente
6:30 group
Wednesday 10/1 4:00pm
the October activity schedules and game schedules were e-mailed out. You may review online here
Tuesday 9/30 4:00pm
the Oct activity schedules are out.
Monday 9/29 5:00pm
you should have recieved the Wed practice schedule in your e-mail
18U TCU schedule has been e-mailed. Contact me with any questions
ABC Fall Showcases:
University of Texas
University of Texas San Antonio
St.Mary's University
Baylor University
Baseball America / Perfect Game
Dallas Baptist University
Texas Tech University
University of A&M Corpus Christi
Sam Houston State

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