Baseball league a ‘labor of love’ for Granger – The Evening Sun
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Carroll Granger has always had a message for young baseball players that get upset when they strike out.
The best in the business only succeed three out of every ten times.
Since 1973, Granger has run Morning League Instructional Baseball for childrenÂ in Hanover. During that time, his goal has been simple: To help kids develop their skills while stillÂ havingÂ fun.
“There’s a very laid back atmosphere, and I think as much as you can in any organized sport thereâs no pressure on the kids,” Granger said. “Eventually as you progress itâs a different atmosphere, and you’ve got to adjust to competition but when youâre 6 or 7, itâs fun to learn the basics.”
In his 43 years running the program, Granger has overseen many changes. The local youth leagueÂ â which runs during the summerÂ for kids ages 6 to 9Â â used to be just for boys and had eight teams sharing two fields. While the increase of developmentalÂ leagues has cut the number of teams to four, girls are now eligible to play and there are four fields to share.
There isn’t any aspect of running the league that Granger doesn’t take part in. He organizes the teams, sets up the schedules and helps instruct the players. It’s a lot of work, and the 73 year old admits it’s gotten hard in recent years.
“It’s a labor of love,” Granger said. “Iâve always been fortunate to do what I love, andÂ Iâve always loved sports and teaching kids.”
A longtime teacher who spent 20 years as the head boys’ basketball coach at South Western, Granger has maintained relationships with many former players. In fact, he now relies on high school players who’ve gone through the instructional league to coach the current kids.
According to Anthony Lippy, a 2014 New Oxford graduate who now pitchesÂ forÂ Elizabethtown College, Granger helps kids improve by showing them techniques rather than just telling them.
“âI think he’s as interactive as a teacher can be,” Lippy said. “He doesnât look to get praise; he does it because he loves the kids.”
After 43 years, GrangerÂ still takes pride in helping kids improve and learn the game.
“One of the things Iâve come to enjoy is not just working with little kids but working with the high school kids,” Granger said. “ItÂ gives me the opportunity to continue that kind of relationship with great kids.”