More than 50 young ballplayers participated in a free youth clinic Sunday afternoon at Point Stadium on the eve of the 73rd annual AAABA Tournament.
The Johnstown Oldtimers, City of Johnstown and The Tribune-Democrat hosted the fun day of activities with the assistance of an all-star cast of coaches, former players and others who have been a part of the AAABA Tournament tradition.
AAABA Hall of Famer Dee Dee Osborne, a former manager of the Johnstown Pepsi-Cola and Principle Development tournament teams, oversaw the onfield activities, which included multiple stations where kids learned a wide variety of skills involving hitting, fielding, pitching and base running.
Former major league pitcher Gene Pentz of Johnstown and former Pittsburgh Pirates World Series-winning third baseman Richie Hebner each participated in the clinic. Hebner, the featured speaker during the 24th AAABA Hall of Fame banquet on Saturday, addressed the group of youngsters near the end of the clinic.
The New Orleans Boosters team joined the clinic to offer tips to the young players.
Former AAABA Tournament standouts Rick Roberts, Ross Kott, Quenteen Robinson and Garry Wurm were instructors. So were Pitt-Johnstown coach Todd Williams and Mount Aloysius coach Kevin Kime.
Martella’s Pharmacy manager Jesse Cooper and GM Chris Pfeil also stopped by for the clinic.
Eric Dinyar, inducted into the AAABA Hall of Fame Class of 2017 a night earlier, offered his expertise to the youth ballplayers.
After the clinic, a celebrity softball game was played to raise money for The Santa Fund, which provides gifts at Christmas for area children whose families are facing financial hardship. Donations were accepted at the stadium’s main gate during the clinic and softball game.