Revere student participates in elite baseball club

Photo courtesy of Jackie Klonowski. Used with permission.
Klonowski steps up to bat.

Michael McKee, Staff Reporter

Revere freshman Nathan Klonowski steps up to home plate. He is batting against the Southeast All American team in the first inning. The ball is thrown; it is a curveball that results in a strike. As a seasoned baseball player Klonowski knows what is going to be thrown, a fastball. The ball comes straight down the middle, a strong swing reaches across his body and strikes the ball dead on. Home run. For Klonowski, a nine year veteran of baseball, this is not an abnormal experience.

Klonowski is a catcher on the Diamond Boys 15U showcase team, which is an elite travel team that travels across the nation to play some of the best club teams in the United States. He plays with and against other players from all over the country. Klonowski’s coach, Casey Wilson, described his position on the team.

“Nathan is a legitimate defensive catcher who can also swing the bat. Behind the plate his skills are one of the best in Ohio, he has a 2.01 pop time, which is average for a college player and Nathan is only 15. At the plate he also has a lot of pop, and can drive the ball gap to gap,” Wilson said.

Klonowski explained the selection process for trying out for the elite team. The process began with Klonowski participating in a combine in Columbus, where baseball players go to exhibit their talents. Klonowski has been selected for the team because he had an extraordinary performance at the combine. He then traveled down to Florida to play with the team.

Wilson discussed the concept of the travel team, and where they plan to travel this year.

“We are a elite travel team that travels the country to play the best club teams. Last year we finished in the top twenty-five qualifying for the World Series in Florida in August. This year we will play in Georgia, Indiana, Wisconsin and Alabama,” Wilson said.

Klonowski’s mother, Jackie, mentioned who has had the biggest impact on Klonowski and his baseball career.

“His coaches have been amazing with the Player Development Program, they offer [off-season]  training. They are a very positive and encouraging influence, while always wanting him to do better,” Jackie Klonowski said.

Jackie Klonowski also described the commitment her family has to the team and Klonowski’s baseball career.

“Playing baseball has impacted the whole family because it is such a great commitment for a long season. We start practicing in October and play until August,” Jackie Klonowski said.

Klonowski explained the relationships he has created through the team.

“We all [just] clicked together really well and were all friends through social media. We talk to each other every once in a while just to see how each other is doing and how baseball is going for them. They all live in different states. I would say the relationships I made were very long lasting,” Klonowski said.

Klonowski also talked about what makes the Diamond Boys Baseball Club unique.

“Baseball and football are similar, but I like baseball just a little bit more because of how many more games we have. The position I play in baseball is very important and our team is really good,” Klonowski said.

Klonowski has a lot of aptitude as a baseball player and through the team has become an even more skilled player along with the help and support of his coaches and parents.