NANAIMO — The Mid-Island Pirates are well into their winter baseball training program.
All three age levels from Bantam to Junior to Senior are heading out to sessions in Nanaimo's Centennial Building or at Chemainus Secondary Wednesdays and Saturdays.
Winter training began in November and will continue until local fields, primarily Serauxmen Stadium, are in good enough condition to play on.
The Pirates hope that's in February but it could be later depending on what mother nature has in store for the last weeks of winter.
Practicing in the Centennial building is not perfect but Rogers says other than fly balls there isn't much else the team can't work on indoors.
"We've hung a cage in there, and we have portable mounds in there. It gives us ample room and ability to do just about anything. We'll go through foot work drills, throwing mechanics, so basically anything we do on the field we can do indoors," said Rogers.
The flagship program of the Mid-Island Pirates is the Senior team and Rogers has high expections for a squad that was young and inexperienced last year.
The coach says even though there were some struggles in 2017 it was still fun to watch that young group grow.
"Now they've had that full year and there's no excuses anymore for the coaching staff or the players. We're mainly a Grade 11 team, but a pretty skilled group of Grade 11's.
The 2018 schedule is in the works right now with the Senior Pirates playing all of their games at Serauxmen Stadium.
The BC Premier Baseball League is moving to a 48 game schedule this season, up from 44 last year.
Rogers says the full schedule should be released in about a week.
On twitter: @danmarshall77
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