Academy notebook 1/4/2019

The Texas Rangers MLB Youth Academy at Mercy Street Sports Complex, Presented by Toyota, is in the business of big dreams. For Erin Ledesma, that includes the softball fields and classrooms of her dream school, Stanford University.

January 4th, 2019

The Texas Rangers MLB Youth Academy at Mercy Street Sports Complex, Presented by Toyota, is in the business of big dreams.

 

For Erin Ledesma, that includes the softball fields and classrooms of her dream school, Stanford University. 

 

While the junior at Irma Lerma Rangel Young Women's Leadership School is preparing for college applications by studying for the ACT and SAT, she's also spending time at the Academy honing her softball skills. 

 

"Dream big. I like school," Ledesma said. "I have to put in a lot of work studying, as well as softball. If I want to be the best and play for the best, I have to put in a lot of time and work."

 

Ledesma's skills on the diamond were on display around the country this summer, as the shortstop represented the Academy at the 2018 Elite Development Invitational in Vero Beach, Florida, in early July; the inaugural Jennie Finch Classic in Washington D.C. during All-Star Week; and the RBI Southwest Regionals in Austin at the end of July.

 

"I really liked Vero Beach, going to Florida. I got to learn from the best coaches. And having the opportunity to be able to do that was amazing," Ledesma said. 

 

While she appreciated the opportunity to work with coaches including Olympic Gold Medalists and members of the USA Softball Women's National Team during the Elite Development Invitational event in Florida, the value of the coaching staff right here at the Academy isn't lost on Ledesma.

 

"I love the community and the coaches. They're really sweet and they help you with anything you need help with, as well as college and school. It's really everything," Ledesma said. "I got close to some of the coaches, so we have a connection. It's really fun."

 

Texas Rangers Director of Youth Academy & Youth Baseball/Softball Programs Juan Leonel Garciga served as Ledesma's coach for the Jennie Finch Classic and RBI Southwest Regionals and had good things to say.

 

"Erin shined throughout the Jennie Finch Classic tournament this past summer. She opened quite a few eyes with her play making ability at shortstop, laying out for balls in the hole and showing off her strong arm. She's a five tool player who, despite being a natural short stop, will play anywhere on the diamond if it means helping the team," Garciga said.

 

The 16-year-old has been playing softball for 11 years now, and coming out to the Academy for over a year of that time. 

 

"It's given me a lot of opportunities to train more, workout more, and be the best I can be," Ledesma said of her experience.

Planning to Camp

 

The Winter Academy Training Session is slated to begin this month. 

 

Starting Monday, January 14, training will be available for baseball and softball players ages 13 through 18. Camp for the 18U athletes will run on Monday and Wednesday nights from 6:00-8:00 p.m. 

 

Starting Tuesday, January 15, training will be available to baseball and softball players ages 7 through 12. Camp for the 12U athletes will run on Tuesday and Thursday nights, also from 6:00-8:00 p.m.

 

The Academy Winter Training Program runs through Wednesday, February 27, for the 18U campers and through Thursday, February 28, for the 12U campers.

 

Registration is now available at https://texasrangersya.leagueapps.com/camps