Year-round practice brings baseball strength

Kamm Kojima, Staff Writer

Championship and state games have ended, bringing winter sports to a finish. Now, spring sports are up and running. But Mid Pacific’s baseball program has been in season all year round. 

Consider baseball’s history: one major league player and former players now working as coaches. Teachers who learned from him. Earning at least one ILH championship at all levels. Last year, they finished 9-9 and came in fifth place. 

The statistics are a result of hours of practicing.

“In order for us to compete in the ILH, we have to be physically fit, conditioned to play in the ILH,” said head coach Dunn Muramaru.

A majority of the players work out year-round while some participate in multiple sports. Kennedy Hara said four hours of his day is spent training without the team during the offseason. 

An estimated 90 baseball players, from both middle and high school, will try out for the team. Only 22 athletes made the team, reported Scott Wagner.

 “It’s a team, not the 25, 24, 23 players. It’s 24 guys that make the best team,” said Muramuru.

Selecting their team, coaches observe the dedication, techniques, and effects the players have on the team said Craig Hayashi, coach for 20 years plus and former player. 

“Now they can focus on something else, sometimes it might be a blessing in disguise,” said Muramaru, when asked about cuts. 

Dunn said the Mid Pacific team is young this year as 11 graduated last year.

“A lot of the other teams have returning players,” said Muramaru. 

Seven players graduated from Punahou, while 11 Mid Pacific players graduated last year.

Losing but gaining players, Mid Pacific baseball coaches helping them play in the ILH league. In which, Dunn notes that other schools have the best of the best and recruit. 

“My main goal is to have the students work on their approach. Make sure they’re in the right mindset,” said Hayashi.

“We will give them keys and just use our experience and try to input that to the kids. The quicker they adapt to those situations; sometimes it takes a year, sometimes a week. It depends,” said Dunn.

The one constant will be the coaches and the working ethic.

“His coaching style has stood the test of time and is still respected and sought after till this day,” said Brandon Kameko, an employee of Hawaii Baseball Association.

Despite the competitiveness, the baseball team is ready as the season begins. 

“We have a good mixture of team members from sophomore to senior class, and I think we have all the components this year to do really well,” said Christopher Wong, junior baseball player.

“I try to emphasize to my pitchers just take one step at a time. Try and focus on doing the job, if we win that’s great, try and build on that, if we lose sometimes that’s good too,” said pitcher Hayashi.