Sportress of Blogitude

Minor League Baseball

Tiny tot ‘Coach Drake’ visits mound during Kalamazoo Growlers game

Mound visits from managers and pitching coaches can often be a tedious affair, but that was not the case by any measure when “Coach Drake” made one during a recent Kalamazoo Growlers game.

The Growlers, based in Kalamazoo, Mich., play in the Northwoods League, a summer collegiate outfit. During a recent tilt with the Kokomo Jackrabbits, the tiny tot took a determined stroll to the mound during the third inning with the Growlers sporting a 2-0 lead.

While obviously a gimmick typical of lower-level league baseball teams — and the Growlers are not averse to such bits — “Coach Drake” clearly takes his duties seriously, as evidenced by the way he patted the rears of each player to alert them to disperse once his mound visit was over. The manner in which he rubs down the ball while coaching up the players is another phenomenal aspect of the “Coach Drake” routine.

How the announcers cover the mound visit like it’s the real deal only makes the scene that much more adorable, as is the case when “Coach Drake” gratefully tips his cap to the appreciative crowd.

All in all, great stuff. Even better? “Coach Drake” kept things headed in the right direction. Growlers starter David Toth ended up pitching four innings, giving up two hits while striking out four in the team’s 6-0 victory.  Now that’s coaching.