THE FINISH LINE: Kudos to International Elite, Max D for helping our baseballers get to next level


Brent Stubbs



IT’S one thing to talk about what you can do, but it’s another to actually go out there and do it.

Over the past decade, both Antoan Richardson and Albert Cartwright have talked about the day that they would be done with playing professional baseball and coming back home to give back to the sport that has helped them to achieve their ultimate goal in life - play professional baseball.

While Richardson was the only one to excel to the top of the sport, playing in the Major League, Cartwright was able to enjoy a long career in the minor league.

The two officially retired from playing last year and are now back home fulfilling the other aspect of their lives, giving back to the Bahamian community.

The two were instrumental in the formation of the Maximum Development Sports Academy, along with Geron Sands and Greg Burrows Jr, all of whom came up through the ranks of Freedom Farm and went on to play at American Heritage School in Delray Beach, Florida.

Max D, as it was affectionately called, served as the basis for providing a number of Bahamian high school players to either continue their education in the United States or earn athletic scholarships. That also led to a number of scouts from various professional baseball teams coming to the Bahamas to conduct clinics and eventually signing a number of players to professional contracts.

Just last year, Cartwright and Sands branched out on their own and formed the International Elite Sports Academy. Today, they are continuing to carry on the mandate they had with Max D in helping to provide the opportunities for more Bahamians to get into the pro ranks.

Last month, it was Keithron Moss who inked his name on a deal with the Texas Rangers and is now in the Dominican Republic in their offseason training camp.

On Wednesday, IESA helped to facilitate the signing of Courtney Smith to the Rangers as well. He too is expected to go to the Dominican Republic to get acclimatised to the pro ranks.

It’s not known why there was a split in Max D that led to the formation of the I Elite as neither parties want to fully disclose what took place behind the scenes. But without going into any details, it’s good to see that the organisation under the direction of Cartwright and Sands is still making it possible for the Bahamian players to get to the next level.

At present, there are close to 20 players in the pipeline of Major League baseball and the way the scouts have been coming here, it seems as if there will be many more players to follow suit.

Cliff Terracuso, the Texas Rangers’ scout for the South area, including Puerto Rico and the Bahamas. best summed it up after he watched Smith sign his contract.

“They understand the game, they love the players here and they do a good job of guiding and training the players here, training them what’s right and what’s wrong and how to train and how to become a professional baseball player,” he pointed out.

“So I have to give a lot of credit to Island Elite. Those guys are amazing. They do a great job for baseball here in the Bahamas.”

Kudos to both Max D and International Elite as well as Antoan Richardson, Albert Cartwright, Geron Sands and Greg Burrows Jr.

They not only talked the talk, but they also walked the talk. They should be commended for the role they played in the developments of so many young men’s lives through the sport of baseball.

Now if only we can get the new baseball stadium completed and senior baseball playing again, it will make a world of a difference in the further development of the game at both the national and international level.

Hopefully before all of these players are done playing, the Bahamas can also get to field its own national team again to compete at the international level.

The home derby organised in January by Todd Isaacs Jr and Lucius Fox Jr was just a prime example of what could be accomplished as the public got to see just about all of the current pro players on stage at Montagu.

What a treat it would be to see all of them on the baseball diamond together.

Look out for it. It’s coming.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment