Dec. 16, 2012

Day 7

Day 6

Day 5

Day 4

Day 3

Not in Kansas Any More


The Kansas Jayhawks are spending eight days in the Dominican Republic. Kansas will play eight games during their trip, mixing in charitable efforts along the way. Head coach Ritch Price (pictured below) will check in each day with thoughts on the journey.


(Photos by Jeff Jacobsen/KAI)


Day 1 – Saturday


Early wake-up call for my guys as the players had to report to our clubhouse by 2 a.m. We loaded up over 130 bags with all the health kits and the swag bags that we’re donating to the people in the Dominican Republic. I was really proud of our managers; Tai Mitchell headed that up. We were supposed to leave at 3 a.m. – we did and we got to the airport terminal in Kansas City at 3:45, and we were the first people in line.


We left Kansas City at 6 a.m., and arrived in Atlanta around mid-morning. From there, we had to hustle to make our flight to Santo Domingo. Our plane left the United States at 10 a.m. local time and we arrived in Santo Domingo, the capital city of the Dominican Republic around 2 p.m., Atlantic Time.


After clearing customs, we went straight to the Kansas City Royals’ Dominican Academy, which is absolutely fabulous. The guys got to use a few of the practice fields to hit and get loose after what turned into a pretty long day.


I cannot thank Dayton Moore, the General Manager of the Royals, enough for what he’s done for the University of Kansas and our baseball program. By allowing us to use his facility and giving us access to the weight room, access to the training room, he’s just been awesome. Their staff has been absolutely wonderful to work with.


Day 2 – Sunday


It was a great comeback win for us today! We scored six times in the last two innings to come back and beat the Royals’ Dominican Academy team. I was really pleased with our bullpen. Drew Morovick came in and put two zeroes up, and then Frank Duncan put two zeroes up, which allowed us to come back after being down 5-0 early on.


For us to come back and put six runs up was really pleasing to see. It was pleasing to see some of our guys get clutch hits with the game on the line. Anytime you can rally and win after being down 5-0 it ends up being a great W.


However, the win was the second-most important thing we did today. Later in the afternoon our guys went to a park in San Pedro, and we held a baseball clinic for about 500 kids that live in the area. Our players went through some of the fundamentals of the game with these kids, who all eat and breathe baseball on a daily basis.


The clinic is one of the most unique things that I’ve ever been involved with. There were over 500 kids that showed up for this, and most of these kids don’t even have gloves. I feel really good about what we did there. We donated over 36 dozen baseballs, a couple sets of catching gear, a couple batting helmets and a Bomb Bat. I thought our players were great on the field with those young kids today.


Then, to cap the day, our freshmen and sophomores rallied to win in a separate game against Yuli Poso. It really was a great day to be a Jayhawk!