Kansas City, Royals, Major League Baseball plan urban youth academy

Jeff Locke of the Pirates delivers a pitch in Thursday’s 5-4 win over the Colorado Rockies in Denver – Pittsburgh’s 10,000th career victory

The first MLB academy in Compton, Calif., already has produced major league players, including Anthony Gose and Aaron Hicks. "Major League Baseball players are fully aware of this history, and that's why today's announcement is an important one".

Phase 1 of the project is scheduled to open by the fall of 2016. It will include an indoor training facility and four diamonds and is planned for Parade Park in the city's Vine District-next door to the Negro League Baseball Museum.

In addition to providing free, year-round baseball and softball instruction and play, including hosting tournaments, coaching clinics and skills camps, the Academy will provide youth with access to tutoring programs, college prep classes, college and career fairs, financial literacy and internship programs, courses teaching math through the use of baseball statistics and MLB industry alternative career workshops.

John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports
John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Other improvements to the park will include a walking trail, new basketball courts and a playground.

"Our goal is really to capture young boys and young girls to continue to play baseball and softball", said Royals General Manager Dayton Moore.

Cleveland Indians' Abraham Almonte runs past Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Perez to score on a single by Jason Kipnis during the sixth inning of a baseball game Saturday, September,26, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. The second phase features an indoor training facility and batting cages. "The idea is to introduce baseball to every kid that we can", Royals director of baseball administration Kyle Vena told the Kansas City Star.


The Kansas City Royals clinched the American League Central Thursday night for the first time since the realignment in 1994, and their first division title since 1985.

Eric Hosmer of the Royals celebrates after hitting a homer Thursday night. The Royals celebrated more later winning their first division title in 30 years