By Bridget Bauer
Five years ago, three men saw the need for a baseball and softball training facility in Bryant.
Doug Castleberry, Russ Milam and Chris Kinzler were the trio who noticed Bryant was lacking the means for advanced coaching, training and practice for baseball and softball players. They approached Pat Harrison, a former college coach and pro hitting instructor who was at the time at Competitive Edge in Little Rock, about coming abroad and being an owner as well as the Director of Instruction. Consequently, Diamond Sports was established five years ago during the month of February.
“At Competitive, Coach Harrison had to take care of everything,” Jessica Gillson, Diamond Sports Office Manager, said. “The guys told Coach Harrison that they would do the business part, and he could take care of baseball.”
As a thank you to the community of Bryant and its customers, Diamond Sports is offering special cage rentals on Saturday, Feb. 22, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Regularly priced at $20, 30-minute cage rentals will be $5 that day. The hours are also extended that day to accommodate the community, and the cages can be reserved or on a walk-in basis.
“We just wanted to give back to the community,” Gillson said. “Business has been going good, and we just wanted to say thank you.”
Diamond Sports is an indoor facility that offers baseball and softball training and practice from skilled instructors who have all played college ball or higher. Originally from San Diego, Harrison was an assistant coach on Oklahoma’s 1994 national championship team. He had head coaching stints at Pepperdine and Ole Miss and was also a hitting instructor for the Los Angeles Dodgers. Harrison was a two-time all-American at USC in the late 1960’s and was also drafted by the Dodgers.
“We pride ourselves on having the best instructors,” Gillson said. “Our recent biggest announcement is we will be part of Bryant Softball Association’s camps and clinics.”
The facility has started the Diamond Wall. On the wall are 41 names of players who have gone on to play college or professional ball. The 41 names represent 19 colleges and one MLB team.
For more information, contact Gillson at (501) 653-BATS (2287) or at firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.diamondsportsbryant.com