What is DREAM Baseball?
DREAM Baseball is about one thing, kids dreaming big! Kids watch & play the game of baseball & many dream of pitching a shut out, hitting a homer, or scoring the winning run...but there's something more to baseball in that it teaches kids incredible life lessons. Dreams can & do come true, BUT baseball teaches life lessons such as discipline, focus and teamwork. At DREAM Baseball, our goal is help provide quality instruction, constructive coaching, and outstanding practice facilities & fields to help kids achieve their dreams of growing in the game of baseball.
Measured Hitting Instruction
According to the publication Popular Science, "Hitting a baseball is the hardest skill to pull off in sports" as it is (scientifically speaking) "a unique blend of physics and neuroscience [which] makes the skill astronomically difficult." Now, take the hardest skill in sports and apply that with youth baseball players; it takes time, practice, and understanding of how to break down & teach to a young player what to do to be a good hitter.
At DREAM Baseball, we use "old school" hitting fundamental techniques and combine them with "new school" optical technology including measuring Exit Speed, Total Spin, Spin Access, Launch Angle, and Exit Direction. One may say that gathering this intelligence is going "over the top," but what the data does show is what happens when a player makes contact with the ball (which is obviously the result of their bat path and overall hitting mechanics). More than anything, this helps pinpoint simple adjustments that can be made and then see results (when adjustments are made) of better back spin (which produces line drives as opposed to top spin which produces ground balls). This is just one application of using software to get feedback from this type of swing analysis. With all of this intelligence, we can track and make necessary adjustments, but again there's a balance of using the "new school" software with traditional (old school) hitting fundamentals.
From a development standpoint, the main question (as instructors) is "why would you guess when you can assess (with measurements)?" DREAM Baseball will incorporate these measurements into hitting fundamentals and (by putting it all together) make every hitting session a learning session and overall produce greater results.
Intentional Pitching & Catching Instruction
Both the pitcher and catcher in the game of baseball are crucial positions in the game and require a lot of specialized instruction. This goes without saying, but there really is an incredible learning curve for young players to go from coach pitch and then into kid pitch, mastering these crucial positions. It takes intentional instruction and a focus on good technique (along with reps) to get players more competent in learning these positions.
As mentioned in our Hitting Instruction section, DREAM Baseball subscribes to teaching "old school" pitching fundamentals, but also in leveraging "new school" software to help give measurements on the following areas:
- 12 Key Metrics - Backward Extension, Forward Extension, Arm Slot, Breaking Force Direction, Lift Force, Speed, Total Spin, Riflespin, Backspin, Sidespin, Vertical Movement and Horizontal Movement
These metrics again help with instructing pitchers in terms of looking at technique (especially with regards to extension when teaching young pitchers) and reinforcing pitching concepts that produce better overall results. However, again, pitchers must learn fundamental mechanics, and that will be a primary focus in the instruction given with gaining valuable feedback from the pitching metrics analysis.
With young players that play the Catcher's position, there are many different fundamentals that are necessary to learn and improve upon. DREAM focuses around catching fundamentals, but also pinpoints tangible tips to help improve footwork situational focus, and pitch framing.
Catching can be physically demanding so it's important that young catchers learn how to move with catcher's gear on, how to minimize pressure on their lower body, and proper throwing technique when throwing to fielders (to help preserve their throwing arm).
Comprehensive Baserunning Instruction
Baserunning instruction is somewhat of a lost art within many baseball organizations when it is such an important aspect of the game. At DREAM Baseball, there will be practices specifically designed to work on baserunning & sliding technique, conditioning, and situational baserunning.
At our Field of Dreams, we'll have bases set up for baserunning stations to work on reading pick offs, proper takeoff technique, and sliding fundamentals.
Focused Fielding & Throwing Fundamentals
Very simply, the 6 "F's" of Fielding (Feet, Field, Funnel, Feet, Fire, & Follow) set the baseline of what good fielding instruction should be. Fielding instruction is vitally important for young players to work with coaches that can demonstrate the "right" way to field the baseball (whether it be working through a grounder or centering up a pop up to make the catch) and then get reps that are supervised with a focus on proper fielding technique.
Another focus of DREAM Baseball is built around the 3 B's of Fielding (a player must): 1) play the Baseball hit to them, 2) cover a Base, or 3) Back up another fielder. Part of understanding how to run an efficient fielding practice is having practice stations that are formulated to work on these aspects of fielding and throwing.
The Field of Dreams is built for instructional fielding and fungo where our players get to learn the comprehensive skillset of being a complete fielder no matter which position they're playing.
DREAM Baseball (owned & operated by Family DREAM Center)
Family DREAM Center has been a staple in the greater Mansfield community since it was founded in 2012. Originally located at 2200 Highway 157 in Mansfield, owners Patrick & Rachel Moraw bought prime commercial property in 2019 and have invested into a state of the art, $3 million dollar property located conveniently at 1496 Heritage Parkway in Mansfield. This location is conveniently off Heritage & Highway 287 (easy to get to from nearby Arlington, Midlothian, etc.) and just minutes away from convenient shopping, restaurants, and downtown Mansfield.
ABOUT Patrick Moraw: Director of DREAM Baseball
Patrick Moraw has been around the game of baseball for his entire life. From growing up playing youth baseball and then playing competitively for Texas 5A powerhouse ('92 State Champs) baseball program Brazoswood High School (south of Houston), Patrick has played the game but has always been a student of the game. As a young man, Patrick began his love for coaching kids when he coached a Dayspring Christian Academy high school basketball team (back in 1999) and then (fast forward) when Patrick & Rachel had two sons, Patrick started coaching his two boys' teams in 2015 and has coached the Mansfield Braves for 5 years.
About Chad McElroy: DREAM Team Coach
Chad McElroy and his wife Leah live in Mansfield along with their 2 boys, Caleb (11) and Colton (8). Chad has been coaching youth sports in some capacity for the past 8 years in the DFW area. In addition to coaching, he is currently a VP at BBVA bank and also owns/operates a Holiday Lighting business. Chad has a passion for coaching baseball and showing young players how to love and respect the game!