Center in Ridgefield, CT 06877
16 East Ridge Drive
Ridgefield, CT 06877
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Welcome to Joe Espinosa’s Baseball Plus! We are dedicated to helping baseball and softball players of all ages and abilities get to the next level through first-rate instruction and positive reinforcement. Joe Espinosas Baseball Plus is a family owned indoor Baseball and Softball training facility located on Route 7 in Ridgefield, CT. Joe Espinosa has run baseball camps for the past twenty-five years in New York City, Nyack, NY, Oneonta, NY, Elmsford, NY, and Miami, Florida. He has run his summer baseball camp in Ridgefield for the past seven years. Baseball Plus opened its doors in September, 2002. Joe is a member of the American Baseball Coaches Association. Baseball Plus adheres to the ABCAs policy of placing its highest priority on teaching and modeling the moral and ethical values of HONESTY, INTEGRITY, RESPECT, DISCIPLINE, PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY, FAIRNESS, AND LOYALTY. Baseball Plus strives to provide excellent baseball and softball training in a safe and friendly environment.Baseball Plus also has practice areas which are used for private lessons and clinics and can also be rented for individual and team practice use.
Baseball Plus is open for clinics, lessons, hitting leagues, and team rentals. Baseball Plus offers programs for players from kindergarten to adult. We hope you will join us for a great baseball and softball experience.
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I think we all agree that sports are meant to be fun. This basic, fundamental concept is too often forgotten as we pursue our athletic dreams of team and individual success. In my opinion, a clinic, class, team practice or game is only successful if the participants leave with a positive feeling and sense of well-being. Smiles and laughter are a greater measure of our success as instructors than are runs, hits and errors. Does this mean that we don’t care about athletic achievement, that we don’t strive to be the " best baseball teachers in the baseball world?" No, it does not. It is just a matter of perspective and emphasis. The odds of our players becoming professional or even collegiate future stars is overwhelmingly small; The chances that our students will leave our lessons, clinics, and camps feeling like stars on a particular day are as high as the odds of Barry Bonds drawing a hundred walks this season. Baseball logic dictates that we play the percentages. We strive to teach- to teach to the best of our ability-with a smile and sense of humor!
Does this mean that we are more concerned with our students as individuals than as ballplayers? Yes, it does!
It is also true that most players have more fun playing when they have acquires a level of proficiency and a feeling of self-confidence. This brings us to the teaching aspects of our philosophy.
My teaching philosophy is to keep things simple, easy to understand, and fun to practice. I think it is important for anyone learning a skill to first view the movements as a whole, understand the relationship between those movements and success and physical safety on the diamond. It is often helpful to show students pictures of the greatest players who have played the game. Emulation has always been a great teacher.
Once the students understand the whole, it is time to break the movements into small units, and advance through a series of progressions, until the skill becomes easy and natural to perform. Multiple repetitions of the small units burn in proper muscle memory. We then take the new skill and “game test it,” through the use of simulated games and situations. Mental aspects of the game, such as two strike hitting are worked on within the context of a live game. Many a Red Sox-Yankee game has been played out in cage #4 this past year!
Our staff is trained to use positive reinforcement as the powerful teaching tool that it is. People like to know that their efforts are appreciated. Young athletes, in particular, need encouragement every step of the way. Our goal is to create a learning environment that is fun, rewarding, and challenging.
It is my belief that an instructor of young children should serve as a positive role model as well as being a knowledgeable and competent teacher of technique. The principles of honesty, integrity, and fair play, and good citizenship are the real lessons to be taught and learned. This is not to say that we do not teach our students to play hard and to compete. It is the spirit of the competition that we must constantly address and help the players understand. Poor sportsmanship is rampant. It is easy to criticize, easy to argue and to complain. Players can fall into the trap of blaming others for their shortcomings. It is up the coaches and instructors to help players through difficult times and keep them practicing. A few hundred extra swings, unlike a thrown bat or helmet, can bring a player out of a slump and into a “happy zone.”
Baseball Plus, our indoor facility, is the natural outgrowth of my twenty-five years of running camps, leagues, and clinics outdoors. It is a place where everyone is respected and valued. We are happy to have all who want to better themselves as players and those that just want to come in and whack a few balls. Baseball Plus is in its second year of operation. We have had many students make great progress here and take it to the field with them. We’ve had countless numbers of children come in for a birthday party and leave smiling and happy. We have players ranging from five year- old kindergartners to retirees venturing out to Fantasy Camps. Little League, Babe Ruth, AAU, High school and college players pass through our doors. Fast-pitch and Slow-pitch softball players, over-30 and over 40 baseball players and 60+comeback kids come to Baseball Plus to practice and to play. It is all great fun!