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Donations from the diamond

Spring is almost here, and for the South Lexington Babe Ruth League that means baseball is near, too. With the new season comes new gear like gloves, bats, and especially baseballs, but that also leaves a lot of older gear from the last season.

So the league decided to hold a drive to collect the used gear for the youth leagues in towns like West Liberty that were damaged by the round of deadly tornadoes earlier this month.

"My son moved from 12-13 year-olds, and there's equipment he can't use," said Mark Bowling a coach who donated equipment, "you realize these kids [in West Liberty] lost everything."

"Baseball is getting ready to kick off and everyone is going out and buying new stuff and wondering what to do with their old stuff," explained Joe Cox, the Equipment Manager for the South Lexington Babe Ruth League, of the idea behind the drive.

Cox organized the weekend drive, "They're on the mend of getting things cleaned up and things like that, so we're just trying to contribute that way."

As these baseball fans know, sports has a way of bringing healing, and they hope their drive helps these ravaged areas.

"In between the lines or inside the fence, I can overlook a lot of things and some things I can just ignore," described Bowling adding, "you get away from where you're trying to repair a house or rebuild a house. [Instead] You can go to a park one day and just be able to go play. It's a few hours of forgetting what's left behind."

"We dodged a bullet, unfortunately, they didn't," said Cox of the deadly storms, "but at the end of the day we're all Kentuckians."

This equipment drive did not strike out.

"This might be a little thing, but hopefully it will make things easier on them just for a little while," Bowling said.

As the clean up in Eastern Kentucky continues, this South Lexington league is looking to inspire hope on the diamond, even in the middle of the debris.

If you have gently used sports gear (from any sport) to be donated, a second drive will be held this coming weekend, March 24-25th at Shillito Park. For more information contact, Joe Cox at 502-803-7873.


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