Category Archives: News

Select a news topic from the list below, then select a news article to read.

PRO-DAY HITTING VIDEO - "BUILDING A STRONG HITTER"

The PRO-DAY Hitting DVD is designed to teach players and coaches the proper mechanics for hitting, from T-Ball players all the way to high school and college. Matt Robinson, Florida State and PRO-DAY Hitting Instructor, will develop your swing by using a proven five-step process that has enabled great hitters like A. Rodriguez, B. Posey, along with the Drew & Upton Brothers just to name a few that he has given hitting prep instruction to over the years. This DVD is not designed to change anyone's swing, but it describes the mechanical process that Major League players follow to allow them to keep their bat head in the zone longer and generate backspin on the ball to carry it over the fence.

"Matt Robinson is one of the countries most outstanding hitting instructors. He has worked with over 10,000 hitters over the past 25-years teaching them to become a better hitter," said Jeff Gross CEO/Founder of PRO-DAY Baseball. "It's a must video to learn from one of the games best and experienced instructors."

Get your Hitting Video Today!!!

CLICK HERE - PRO-DAY HITTING VIDEO

PRO-DAY All-American headed to Faulkner University

MONTGOMERY, AL -- Former PRO-DAY All-American standout outfielder TJ Riles of Ellenwood (GA) is headed to Faulkner University in Montgomery (AL), announced PRO-DAY Baseball.

Riles visited Faulkner and Head Coach Patrick McCarthy shortly after his teams return from the NAIA College World Series, where his Eagles (54-12) finished national champion runner-up for the second consecutive season.

The 6-2/200 Riles, liked everything he saw on his visit and he couldn't turn down the offer and to be apart of a winning program that Coach McCarthy has built at Faulkner.

TJ completed his junior college career and received his associates degree at Wallace-Dothan (AL) where he batted an impressive .386 (71-184) in 57 games which also included four home runs, 43 RBI’s, 38 runs scored to go along with his 23 stolen bases.

His honors also included ranked in the “Top 10” Overall in many categories in Junior College Baseball. Batting Average: .386 (8th), Hits: 71 (3rd), Doubles: 15 (5th), Triples: 10 (1st), RBI’s: 43 (8th), Total Runs: 118 (2nd), Stolen Bases: 23 (2nd) and Slugging Percentage: .641 (4th).

Riles played last season at East Carolina University (NC) and was an everyday starting outfielder while batting .250 for the Pirates.

TJ will now finish his college career and degree at Faulkner University where he received a full scholarship at a program that has played in the championship game three out of the last five seasons, winning the national championship in 2013.

Faulkner University has had some high draft picks in the MLB draft in the past few years that included this past season's shortstop Olivier Basabe who was selected by the San Diego Padres as the 228th pick in the eighth round. The junior out of Maracaibo, Venezuela, became the first NAIA player chosen this season.

Faulkner teammates Tra'mayne Holmes and Ivan Pelaez were selected by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 11th round and Tampa Bay Rays in the 33rd round, respectively. 

Pitcher Corey Black, a fourth round pick by the New York Yankees in 2012, and pitcher Austin Adams, a fifth rounder who went to the Cleveland Indians in 2009, are players drafted in most recent years out of Faulkner.

TJ hopes his dreams can also be fulfilled at Faulkner University to get that chance to play in professional baseball.

His father (Ernest) played nine-years in the major leagues (Milwaukee, San Francisco, Oakland, Houston and Boston) and his mom (Carol) was a four-sport standout athlete in high school.

If his parents talent wasn't enough, his older sisters Kelli (basketball) and Kamri (gymnastics) received full college scholarships and were also outstanding college athletes.

Professional Scouts and College Coaches first noticed TJ at a PRO-DAY Regional Showcase at Florida State University in Tallahassee (FL). His performance from there earned him an invitation to participate in the PRO-DAY “North/South/East/West” National Showcase in Millington (TN) that helped him to be named to the PRO-DAY All-American Team.

“PRO-DAY Baseball truly prepared me for what I’m going through now. PRO-DAY was my first workout and everyone was so knowledgeable and you knew what you needed to work on to become even a better player when you left,” said Riles. “I like the fact that there were a variety of scouts (Pro/College) there to keep an eye on you as you progress through the years. PRO-DAY truly prepared me.”

"We wish TJ the very best this season. For him to get his college degree, stay healthy and put up some good numbers and help his team get back to the College World Series," said Jeff Gross, Founder of PRO-DAY Baseball.

"TJ has a solid family supporting cast," said Gross. "He will be successful in whatever field he chooses, although I see him continuing playing baseball after this season."

-30-

For information on how to attend PRO-DAY events, visit: www.pro-daybaseball.com

Frazier signs w/Arkansas-Monticello


PINE BLUFF, AR -- Aaron Frazier has signed a letter of intent to play baseball this fall for the University of Arkansas-Monticello.

Frazier, a three-time All-State Baseball standout at Watson Chapel High School made it official today with the signing at his high school with his coaches, teammates, family and friends looking on.

The 6-1/190 right-handed pitcher was vital on Coach Chad Cope's staff at WCHS throughout his high school career. He pitches 84-86 and can reach the upper 80's.

Aaron attended PRO-DAY Baseball Showcases and caught the eyes of College Coaches and Professional Scouts.

"Aaron did well by attending our events and caught our attention and others," said Bill Earnhart, Hall-of-Fame Scout and member of the 2001 World Champion Arizona Diamondbacks, who is the National Scouting Director for PRO-DAY Baseball. "Especially at our event in Pine Bluff, he really stood out. I wish him much success."

Frazier had several offers and much interest, according to Jeff Gross, Founder of PRO-DAY.

"He had the opportunity to receive scholarships at two-year and four-year colleges," said Gross. "I think UAM is going to be a great fit for him and he will get great tutelage under Coach Harvey and Coach Jelks."

Frazier's deciding factor was, "My interest in the schools agriculture program, as well as the teams success in the last few seasons.

"I have heard nothing but good things about Coach Harvey and Jelks. I think playing for them will benefit me in the present as well as in the future," said Frazier.

Frazier continued, "Attending the PRO-DAY events definitely benefited me. From the advice given from multiple coaches as well as current players, it is very easy to learn how to better yourself mentally as well as physically.

"I would definitely recommend PRO-DAY to any high school player that is seriously interested in playing at the collegiate level," said Frazier.

"PRO-DAY Baseball wishes Aaron much success on the baseball diamond and in his career after baseball," said Gross.

Aaron is the son of Alan and Frances Frazier of Pine Bluff.

-30-

More information on PRO-DAY, visit: www.pro-daybaseball.com or call 1-888-224-6150.

Little commits to University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff


PINE BLUFF, AR -- Brandon Little of Pine Bluff High School (AR), a right-handed pitcher/infielder has committed to play baseball this fall at the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff during his announcement ceremony at Historic Taylor Field.

Little was a four-year starter, who was named all-state and all-conference for the Zebras.

Brandon batted .387 (24-62) with a home run, six doubles, 14 RBI's, 15 runs scored and 11 stolen bases his senior year.

He recorded three wins on the pitching mound, striking out 41 batters in 26.1 innings of work.

Pine Bluff High Head Coach Ryan Stinson said, "It's been a pleasure coaching Brandon these past four years. He's a fine young man and attribute to our team. I wish him only the best in the future."

Little will be playing for UAPB Head Coach Carlos James, who was a former Zebra himself and a teammate of Stinson's in high school, college and professional baseball.

"Coach James showed an interest in me from the beginning," said Little. "They have a very successful program that I grew up watching and wanted to become a part of, plus it was close to home."

Little continued, "I believe that it will be very fun and a great experience. Coach James is a good coach and I hope to learn even more than I already have."

UAPB Golden Lions Coach Carlos James, said. "He comes from a good baseball family. He's a good academic person and we hope that will translate from the classroom to the ballfield so he can help us early on to get some innings for us in relief and later on in his career hopefully to become a starter."

Little attended PRO-DAY Showcases and was on its' radar throughout his high school career.

"PRO-DAY was a great experience and it was a great way to make new friends and learn new things about the game," said Little. "If I was encouraging a future high-school prospect, I would highly recommend participating in PRO-DAY, that is one of the best ways to get recruited."

Jeff Gross, founder of PRO-DAY Baseball said, "I've known Brandon and his family for many years. Seeing his progress first-hand over the years, it was no doubt that he could play baseball at the next level after high school."

"Brandon had other offers and interest, but at the end of the day, he wanted to stay home and play for his hometown school," said Gross. "I wish him much success in baseball and also in life."

Little was named the first recipient of the John David Barfield Memorial Scholarship, in honor of the former 1983 PBHS state champion pitcher, that went on to pitch with the Texas Rangers, who passed away prior to the beginning of this season.

Brandon is the son of Randy and Toni Little of Pine Bluff.

-30-

More information on PRO-DAY Visit:
www.pro-daybaseball.com

Join PRO-DAY's Fall Showcase Team

*UODATE - Players need to report to Ouachita Baptist University Baseball Field in Arkadelphia (AR) on Saturday, September 23rd (Rain or Shine). Come dressed in baseball pants (white or gray), bring all equipment along with Tennis Shoes and cleats. Morning session will be evaluations with ball game scheduled in afternoon.

PRO-DAY COMING TO OUACHITA BAPTIST UNIVERSITY (SEPT. 23 - ARKADELPHIA), THREE RIVERS COMMUNITY COLLEGE (SEPT 30 - POPLAR BLUFF, MO), LYON COLLEGE (OCT. 7 - BATESVILLE) and UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL ARKANSAS (OCT 21 - CONWAY)


PRO-DAY Fall Showcases will be held at four college baseball sites in September/October located in Arkansas and Southeastern Missouri announced Jeff Gross, CEO/Founder of PRO-DAY Baseball.

High School prospects (Classes 2018-21) will play in games and go thru professional workouts while being evaluated by professional scouts and college coaches.

Since 1989, PRO-DAY has taught the game of baseball to players of all ages and in 2001 PRO-DAY started expanding into over 14-states with State, Regional & National Showcase events.

PRO-DAY has helped over thousand players receive scholarships to go off to college and sent over hundreds of players into professional baseball.

From last years World Champion Chicago Cubs Pitcher Travis Wood, who came to PRO-DAY as a freshman in high school to most recent Cleveland Indians "Top Prospect" Bobby Bradley, who also started with PRO-DAY as a freshman, a former PD All-American and Home Run Derby Champion, who was headed to LSU before signing with the Indians after being selected in the 3rd round of the Major League Baseball Player's Draft.

PRO-DAY's staff has over 100-years of experience in professional baseball either as a scout, coach or player led by PRO-DAY National Scouting Director Bill Earnhart, a Hall-of-Fame Scout and member of the 2001 World Champion Arizona Diamondbacks.

World Series Champion Boston Red Sox Scout Danny Watkins, has been scouting at PRO-DAY's events for over a decade.

"I've been to lots of showcases and workouts over the years, one things for sure PRO-DAY Baseball does it has good as any.

"PRO-DAY will give you a true evaluation and will follow your progress to help you have an opportunity to get to the next level,"said Watkins.

Former San Francisco Giants World Series Champion Scout Hugh Walker, who played for Gross in the Minor Leagues, echoed Watkins remarks in the past.

"If you want to have a chance to be seen by college coaches and scouts,"said Walker. "I encourage you to attend PRO-DAY."

The PRO-DAY Fall Showcase will be held on four Saturdays in September/October. "Opening Weekend" - Players will report at 10 am. for professional workout and evaluations.

Sept. 23 - Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, AR

Sept. 30 - Three Rivers CC in Poplar Bluff, MO

Oct. 7 - Lyon College in Batesville, AR

Oct. 21 - University Central Arkansas in Conway, AR

REGISTER

Players need to register in advance. Additional information contact PRO-DAY Baseball at 1-888-224-6150 or email: prodaybaseball@yahoo.com

-30-

PRO-DAY Baseball Camp set for June 26-27 in Woodville (MS)

WOODVILLE, MS – PRO-DAY Professional Baseball will conduct a Baseball Camp for players in grades 5-12 on June 26-27 at Wilkinson County Christian Academy, announced Jeff Gross, CEO of PRO-DAY.

Gross, has over 30-years experience in Professional Baseball as a Scout and as a college coach. He scouted with the Texas Rangers and Chicago Cubs for several years, a former Minor League Baseball Club President and Founder of PRO-DAY Baseball, which has conducted Professional Baseball Camps since 1989, teaching the great game of baseball to players of all ages will be conducting the camp along with his staff.

“PRO-DAY Baseball is very excited to come to Woodville and the surrounding area to put on a baseball camp,” said Gross. “Players will get to take in lots of information in a short time from some outstanding instructors to take back home with them to improve in their game.”

Since 2001, PRO-DAY has conducted High School Showcases in over 14-Southeastern States to “Help Players Advance to the Next Level”, whether that would be professionally or collegiately.

Veteran Major League Scout Bill Earnhart, member of the 2001 World Champion Arizona Diamondbacks, a Hall-of-Fame Scout and former professional players will be working with campers in all areas of hitting, fielding, pitching and base-running during the Clinic.

Jack Cockrum, a catcher, who played professional baseball with Schaumburg Boomers in the Frontier League will be working with the campers. Jack had an outstanding collegiate baseball career at the University of West Alabama where he was an All-American.

Players in grades 5-8 will attend morning sessions on both days from 9 am - 12:00 noon and grades 9-12 afternoon camp session is from 1 pm - 4 pm daily. The two-day cost is $75 per camper with a $10 discount ($65) to each other household family member.

The camp registration is “Limited", so sign- up early by calling Wilkinson County Christian Academy Head Baseball Coach Mac Newcomb at (601) 248-1234.

Make checks payable to:
WCCA Baseball Camp

Send to:
Wilkinson County Christian Academy
Attn: WCCA Baseball Camp/
Coach Mac Newcomb
2420 Hwy 61 South
PO Box 977
Woodville, MS 39669

* Include Players Name, Grade, Age & Session they will attend.

Ralph Gross Memorial Baseball Camp set March 4th at Scrapper Dome in Nashville

NASHVILLE, AR -- PRO-DAY Baseball will host the Ralph Gross Memorial Baseball Camp on Saturday, March 4th from 9 a.m. – 12 noon at the Scrapper Dome Indoor Facility on the campus of Nashville High School, announced Jeff Gross, Founder of PRO-DAY Baseball and son of the late Ralph Gross.

Player’s ages 8-15 years of age will learn hitting, fielding, pitching and base-running from former Texas Rangers/Chicago Cubs Scout during the three hour session.

Gross has worked in baseball on both the professional and minor league levels along with coaching college baseball at the University of Arkansas/Monticello and Pensacola Junior College.

Since he & his late brother (John) founded PRO-DAY Baseball in 1989, they have helped hundreds and hundreds of players advance into professional baseball and with thousands going on to receive scholarships to play college baseball.

Current/Recent Major League players he has been associated with includes: 9-time Gold Glove Winner Torii Hunter (Minnesota Twins), Travis Wood (Chicago Cubs), Justin Upton (Detroit Tigers), BJ Upton (Atlanta Braves), John Buck (Atlanta Braves), Stephen Drew (New York Yankees) & Billy Sadler (San Francisco Giants) to name a few.

"This is a great opportunity for baseball players of all ages to listen to a person who has been in baseball on all levels as a professional scout and a collegiate coach," said Kyle Slayton, head baseball coach at Nashville High. "The knowledge that they will receive in this short time is remarkable and the money that is raised goes to an outstanding cause."

The camp is named in memory of the former 1952 Nashville High graduate who was a five-star athlete in baseball, basketball, football, track and tennis. The money raised for this camp helps go to a student-athlete each year at Nashville High who plans to go off to college to continue their education while playing sports. The Ralph Gross Athletic Scholarship Award has been presented annually since 2003.

The cost of the camp is $50. Visit: www.pro-daybaseball.com to register, email prodaybaseball@yahoo.com or call: 1-888-224-6150 to reserve you a spot.

REGISTER HERE

5x All-Star & 9-time Gold Glove Winner, Hall-of-Fame Football Star, Texas Rangers Pitcher & Scouts, Pay Tribute to MLB Pitcher John Barfield

By: PRO-DAY Baseball Media Services

12//29/16

Pine Bluff, AR – On New Year's Eve, family, teammates and many friends will pay their respects to John David Barfield who lost his life on Christmas Eve in Little Rock (AR).

Barfield, a 1983 graduate from Pine Bluff High School who went on to pitch in the Major Leagues with the Texas Rangers (1989-91) after being selected in the 11th round of the MLB Draft in 1986.

After leading his Pine Bluff Zebras to the 1983 State Championship, which started a four-year “Arkansas High School Baseball Dynasty” title run (1983-86), Barfield signed to take his talents to Crowder Junior College (Neosho, MO) and then to Oklahoma City University when he was selected 267th overall by the Rangers.

“I remember when the Rangers drafted John David,” said former 45-year major league scout Bill Earnhart, who is the National Scouting Director for PRO-DAY Baseball. “Sandy Johnson (Rangers Scouting Director) asked me to fly into Little Rock from Arlington right after the MLB Draft and I met with John David and his father (Jack) at the coffee shop at the airport.

“He and his father were so nice to me when we met,” said Earnhart, “We visited for a little bit and then I signed him to a professional contract there at the Coffee Shop inside the airport.

'John David was excited to get started,”added Earnhart.”He was above average college pitcher when we drafted him and then worked to become a good “Big League” pitcher. I hate to hear this news, John Barfield was a good guy.”

Five-time All-Star Torii Hunter, a 1993 Pine Bluff High standout, who played with the Minnesota Twins, Anaheim Angels and Detroit Tigers during his career (1997-2015) that led to winning two Silver Slugger Awards and capturing nine “Gold Glove” titles was shocked to hear the news on Barfield.

“Awww man, I can't believe it, “said Hunter, who was celebrating Christmas with his family at his home in Prosper (TX). “He use to come back to Pine Bluff High and throw batting practice to our team, before he would leave for spring training.

“Everyone liked John,”Hunter said. “I really hate to hear this.”

Mike Jeffcoat, a 1977 PBHS graduate was a teammate with Barfield during Johns days with Texas and current Head Baseball Coach at Texas Wesleyan in Fort Worth reflected back during his time being a teammate with him.

“John was the type of teammate you liked to have, always positive, happy and enjoyable to be around,” said Jeffcoat. “He was liked by all of his teammates.”

Jeff Gross, a teammate and member of the 83-84 state championships at Pine Bluff was a Ranger Scout (1989-1993) along with his brother John.

“JD was a great teammate and fun to be around,” said Gross. “I remember when we did our first-ever PRO-DAY Baseball Camp in 1989 at Legion Field in Pine Bluff.

“Mike Jeffcoat, my brother, JD and myself worked with about 50 young kids teaching the fundamentals of the game. JD was so wonderful with the players, he stayed and talked to everyone until it was time to lock up the gate.

“Later on when visiting him at a game in Arlington, I was talking to Nolan Ryan waiting on JD to come out of the clubhouse,” said Gross. “JD came over to me and whispered, can you believe I'm playing with Nolan. He was still young at heart while playing a kids game and that's why so many people loved him. Thanks for being a teammate and friend.”

Hall-of-Famer and 11x All-Pro Football player Willie Roaf of the New Orleans Saints (1993-2001) and Kansas City Chiefs (2002-2005) and a 1988 grad of Pine Bluff High School was saddened to get a call while visiting family in Atlanta (GA) before heading back to his Miami (FL) home.

“My condolences goes out to the family,” said Roaf. “We lost one of the great Zebras (PBHS mascot) to ever wear that uniform, a great person, who will be greatly missed.

“I know things weren't always easy for him, but now he's in heaven with our Lord and is in a better place,” said Roaf.

Funeral Services will be held on Saturday, December 31st at Ruebel Funeral Home in Little Rock (AR). Visitation will be at 1 pm. and service to begin at 2 pm. Burial will follow at Roselawn Cemetery.

In Leau of Flowers, the family request donations sent to: Zebra Baseball Club, C/O John Barfield, PO Box 3141, Pine Bluff, AR 71601.

PRO-DAY Fall Showcase ends w/Players Receiving Offers & Underclassmen on Radars

The 2016 PRO-DAY Fall Showcase & Games concluded recently with players participating at Junior College, NAIA & Division I Colleges and at a former Minor League Stadium during the month of September and early October.

Players represented High School Classes 2017-2021 that played in games and went thru professional workouts that were held at Three Rivers Community College in Poplar Bluff (MO), Lyon College in Batesville (AR), University of Central Arkansas and the Ole' Professional Park (Taylor Field) that once was the Home of the St. Louis Cardinals Minor League Club and most recently the Locomotives in Pine Bluff (AR).

These prospects were evaluated by College Coaches and professional scouts with their grades being sent off to three colleges of the players choice.

Green County Tech High School Prospect Preston Hart of Paragould was the fastest in the 60-yard dash with a 6.84. Garrett Dennis of Watson Chapel High School had the Best "Pop-time" for a catcher at 2.01 and his high school teammate Aaron Frazier was 85 mph off the mound to record the Top Velocity.

Several Players received offers and many others are now on colleges follow list, said Jeff Gross, CEO of PRO-DAY Baseball. "Many of these players that attended was the first time they had went thru a professional workout, evaluated by college coaches and scouts," said Gross. "We had a very outstanding Freshman Class that attended and they are on several radars now, which gives them a chance to get their name out early in their high school career.

"We had seniors who may have not had offers to play at a college and now they do so," said Gross. "PRO-DAY Baseball looks forward to watching these players progress and seeing them advance to the next level."

List of PRO-DAY Prospects that attended:

2017 Arkansas Class - Preston Hart (Paragould), Dylan Montgomery (Greenwood), Chris Bass (Vilonia), Colby Boyd (Paragould), Andrew Cooper (Paragould), Marshall Roberson (Mountain Home), Tripp Cheney (Fayetteville), Hunter Gautreaux (Benton) & Aaron Frazier (Pine Bluff),

2018 Arkansas Class - Bryce Dodd (Fox), Leighton Curry (Banks), Caleb Boyd (Pine Bluff), Gage Reep (Warren) & Garrett Dennis (White Hall),

2018 Mississippi Class - Caleb Baldwin (Clinton).

2019 Arkansas Class - Lain Millerd (Warren), Chris Cobb (Pine Bluff) & Kendall Pope (Banks).

2020 Arkansas Class - Beau Young (Corning), Jackson Henfling (Piggott), Cole Guthrey (Corning), Noah Burton (Harviell) & Michael Palmer (Rector).

2020 Missouri Class - David Dell (Campbell), Dalton Reed (Ellsinore), Carson Webb (Poplar Bluff), Luke Becker (Poplar Bluff), Seth Jones (Harviell), Dawson Hanner (Poplar Bluff) and Noah Burkey (Poplar Bluff).

2021 Arkansas Class - Brayson Smallwood (White Hall).

For more information on PRO-DAY Baseball, visit their website at www.pro-daybaseball.com or call 1-888-224-6150.

PRO-DAY Fall Showcase Starts After Labor Day on Sept. 10

ORANGE BEACH, AL- PRO-DAY Fall Showcases get underway after Labor Day beginning on September 10, according to Jeff Gross, CEO/Founder of PRO-DAY.

The Fall Showcases will be for four consecutive weekends beginning on Sept. 10th with the first event to be held at Three Rivers Community College in Poplar Bluff (MO) with the other dates/locations running thru Oct.1st.

"We have moved the start back to after Labor Day weekend to give families one last vacation weekend before getting deep into their school year," said Gross."We are excited to get started and Coach Burkey (Three Rivers CC) is looking forward for us kicking off at his college field."

Players on the Missouri Team will report at 9 am on Saturday, Sept. 10 at Three Rivers Community College Field for the Professional Workouts/Evaluations.

If you are a out of state player on another team you have the option to go thru the workout as well, you just need to report by 9 am, otherwise you will have your professional workout in your home state location the following weekends.

All other players will check-in at 11:30 am at the field. Players will receive their game shirts/caps upon arrival. Come dressed in white baseball pants and bring all equipment needed.

Games get underway at approx. 12:15 pm with the 14U Teams with 18U to follow.

Players who haven't completed all their paperwork need to do so now.

REGISTER

Questions call 1-888-224-6150 or email prodaybaseball@yahoo.com