By BRENT STUBBS
Senior Sports Reporter
GREG Burrows Sr, founder of Freedom Farm Baseball, has ascended to one of the top positions of the prestigious Babe Ruth organisation as the Commissioner with responsibility for the Caribbean.
With immediate effect, Burrows Sr will have jurisdiction over the Bahamas, Curacao, Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, St Kitts, Mexico and Bermuda.
Burrows Sr, a former senator in the Progressive Liberal Party, has revealed that he has already identified a commissioner to serve in Curacao, who will assist him in the development of Babe Ruth Baseball in the region.
Additionally, Burrows Sr will be looking at possible candidates to fill the role as commissioner in the rest of the member countries, including the Bahamas, with the view of forming a body for the further development of Babe Ruth in the region and ultimately to serve a Caribbean Championships.
“It gives me the opportunity to not only develop baseball and players in wholesome activities in the Bahamas, but to also interact with foreign leaders in baseball and bring together as plans to formulate and execute the way forward for baseball in the Caribbean,” Burrows said.
By virtue of sending teams off from Freedom Farm, the Junior Baseball League of Nassau and Grand Bahama to the Babe Ruth Tournament, Burrows Sr said the Bahamas is in a better position to help spread the brand throughout the other countries in the region.
And with the Bahamas government on the verge of completing the new national baseball stadium at the Queen Elizabeth Sports Centre, Burrows Sr said he intends to take advantage of the sports tourism and turn it into a baseball mecca in the country.
“We have little leverage to host these types of tournaments so that we can showcase our kids right here at home,” Burrows Sr said. “So there is a lot of potential for the sport moving forward.”
With no term of tenure in office, Burrows Sr said his mandate is to get the Babe Ruth Baseball as a household brand just as it is in the United States, honouring one of the greatest players to ever play the game.
Babe Ruth, whose real name was George Herman Ruth, died on August 16, 1948 at the age of 53. He was an American professional baseball player whose career in Major League Baseball (MLB) spanned 22 seasons from 1914 through 1935.
Nicknamed “The Bambino” and “The Sultan of Swat”, Babe Ruth began his MLB career as a star left-handed pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, but achieved his greatest fame as a slugging outfielder for the New York Yankees.
Among his list of achievements were two-time All-Star, seven-time World Series champion, American League most valuable player and batting champion. He produced a ,342 batting average with 2,873 hits, 714 home runs, 2,213 runs batted in (RBI) with a 94-46 win-loss record and an earned run average (ERA) of 2.28.
Burrows Sr, who has helped to mentor and groom countless numbers of Bahamian players who went on to continue high school or secure athletic scholarships to colleges and universities in the United States and even become professional baseball players, said he’s honoured to be serving as the commissioner for the region of such a legendary player.
Freedom Farm was founded by Burrows Sr in 1989 to help develop the skills of young baseball players. They now cater to players from the coach pitch to senior league.