Fortunate to be the recipient of some assistance – and plenty of free equipment – through his journey in baseball so far, Adam Hall wanted to offer the same to some of the young players in his community.
The Great Lake Canadians shortstop, and top position-playing prospect north of the border heading into the upcoming draft, took some time between trips with the Canadian Junior National Team this spring – after matching up against professional competition in St. Petersburg in March and before playing at extended spring training in April – to give back, in conjunction with the Canadians program and Home Run Sports in London.
Each year, Great Lake players utilize fundraising efforts to help lower program fees. Top fundraisers earn prizes, including equipment from Home Run Sports. Named a winner, the Canadian Premier Baseball League player offered his equipment back to candidates found by the local store, and together they made got the seasons of about a dozen young players started off on the right foot.
“I get a lot of stuff through baseball, so I have more than enough equipment already,” the 17-year-old infielder said. “So I was talking to my parents [Helen and Tyler] about it and we just thought we should do something to give back, and then Home Run Sports gave us an opportunity to do that and we were able to set something up with them.”
Hall’s father got the ball rolling with the baseball and softball store, whose staff was more than happy to participate and assist in the process.
“It really happened through Home Run Sports,” Hall said. “My dad talked to them to try and see if we could do anything with that, and the event came out of it. We planned it all probably about a month before the event happened.”
Added Tyler Hall: “The Junior National Team equips its players very well, and Adam received a lot of gear at different showcase events last summer. So it was nice for him to be able to donate the value of his fundraising incentive prizes. We’ve been fortunate to have assistance on many fronts over the last five or six years, so giving back is a natural thing to want to do.”
On a Saturday at the beginning of April, Hall and Home Run Sports combined to outfit 12 young players between the ages of seven and 11 years old, who left fully equipped and eager for the upcoming season.
“Home Run Sports chose the recipients,” the Bermuda-born native of London said. “They called the local programs and asked around to figure out which families would be suitable for what we were doing.
“There were a couple of groups of kids that came in. I had a meet-and-greet with them, talked to them about their baseball teams, my baseball, and what I’ve been able to do with baseball. Then I kind of took the kids around, found a glove for each of them that they liked, and I helped them with that a little bit, finding a glove that was right for them.
“Then they picked out some batting gloves, and they got to choose the colours they wanted for those, and then they also got cleats from Home Run Sports. I didn’t do that, Home Run Sports hooked them up with cleats, and then they got a package from Home Run as well, with a t-shirt, water bottle and hat.”
Watching from the sidelines, Tyler Hall was especially proud of his teenage son’s efforts and the impact he made not only in the moment but beyond the event.
“We are of course proud to see Adam thinking of others, and acting as a positive role model,” the elder Hall said. “The Great Lake Canadians and Home Run Sports were really enthusiastic about the idea, and jumped right in to make it a great event. We were also touched to learn that GLC 14U player Dylan O’Rae donated the value of his custom Rawlings glove that he earned through his fundraising efforts.”
All in all, the day couldn’t have been better for all those involved.
“It was definitely fun, especially seeing the reactions of the kids,” Hall said. “They were pretty excited about all the equipment, the hats and the cleats, and that helped a lot. Two of them even wore their cleats home from the store. It felt good to be able to help. They were excited and they were happy, and seeing that was pretty cool.”