Red Berry’s Baseball World closes its doors at the end of March. Those parents are starting their search for a new place to play and Danny Berry hopes they will look his way.
“I have been getting calls from people who were at his facility,” said Danny Berry of Danny Berry’s JCC Baseball, based at the Dave and Mary Alper Jewish Community Center. He’s been at the JCC for almost 20 years. Prior to that, he worked at Red Berry’s facility for nine years.
Berry wrote a letter to Red Berry congratulating him on his career.
“We both have the philosophy about baseball,” Danny Berry said.
Berry said he can handle an influx of children who are seeking a new baseball league now that Baseball World is closing.
“I can take in more. I’d basically spread them out throughout the week. My goal is to get 500.”
In fact, the timing of when Red Berry’s program ends and Danny Berry’s next one begins is good.
“His season goes until the end of March,” Danny Berry said. “My next program starts at the end of April.”
That’s when he begins his Little League season and his Intro to Baseball Program for 3- and 4-year olds.
Danny Berry said he and Red Berry run similar programs where parents are involved but the teams are coached by guys who played in college or the minors. He makes sure they coach positively and encourage the kids instead of yelling at them. His program always has been respected and now he has added an official Little League program as well.
“I do have parents coaching in my Little League,” he said. “But I’m here all the time. My job, as the president of the league, is to make sure the parents are talking to the kids, not yelling and screaming at them.”
Danny Berry believes that playing baseball should be fun for children, without the pressure that they’ll feel if they play high school or college ball.
“It should be the best time of their lives, right now,” Danny Berry said. “It builds their self esteem. It rubs off on other things at school. A coach is like a hero to the kids for six months.”
He said being in a good baseball program can build character and teach good sportsmanship.
“We make it a non-pressured fun environment for the kids,” he said.
That’s one of the reasons he brought in Little League, because its philosophy meshes with his philosophy.
Danny Berry’s Little League team of 11- and 12-year olds made it to the state championship last year, just one game from going on television. They lost the championship game but he’s confident he is going to have another good team this year.
“I think we’re going to have a pretty good team with the 11 and 12’s,” he said. “The 9 and 10’s have a good team, but they can only go as far as state.”
He is a fan of the system because Little League demands positive coaching.
“You see the coaches in the World Series, you don’t see the yelling and screaming,” Danny Berry said. “Little League stresses the fun and the positive.”
Danny Berry’s has an academy setting in the fall, Little League starting Apr. 30 and running for six weeks, then summer camp. He also runs an Intro to Baseball program for 3 and 4 year olds. His program accommodates children through age 12.
For more information, call 305-271-9000, ext. 241, or go online to <www.dannyberry.com>.