Michael “Squints” Palledorous whispered, “The legend of the beast goes back a long time … before any of us could even pick up a baseball.” That movie, The Sandlot, goes on to explain that “Heroes get remembered, but legends never die.”
Today, through baseball, two men come bearing a message not of heroes or legends ... but of a Savior sent to us before we could even pick up a baseball!
WELCOME, JASON ARNOLD AND GREG PLECKI!
These two men love God and both played professional ball. And they’ve been called to help us launch Club FCA in Brevard County. Before I tell you about that, let me tell you about them ...
COACH JASON ARNOLD was a two-time All-American at UCF, a second-round draft pick of the New York Yankees in 2001, and spent two seasons on the Toronto Blue Jays 40-man roster. He founded and coached the Brevard Aces for five seasons and coached the Evoshield Canes for the past two summers. He’s also the head coach at Satellite High School.
Previously, Coach Arnold was a NCAA Division I college coach for four years, where he cultivated a long list of trusted contacts and friends. College baseball scholarships often grow out of relationships built between an athlete's coach, college coaches and scouts.
More than that, it’s his relationship with Christ that qualifies him to be Head Coach of our FCA Club Baseball Team ...
Jason grew up in a Christian home but was unsure about his walk with Christ during his college and professional playing years. His relationship with many close friends, especially Jason Schack, helped him reopen the door to Christ. Since that time 10 years ago, Jason’s faithfulness to the Lord has grown exponentially. He is a member of Georgianna United Methodist Church in Merritt Island, serves on the Brevard FCA board and is the FCA Huddle Leader at Satellite High School.
Jason is married to Jennifer Arnold and they have three children: Sydney, Grant and Rhett.
COACH GREG PLECKI ran the Cape Coast Canes travel ball organization here in Brevard County for three years. He also coached with the Brevard Aces for three years and the Evoshield Canes the past two years.
Coach Plecki has helped countless players earn opportunities to play at the college level. He is head coach at Merritt Island High School. A former Division I and professional player, Coach Plecki's network of contacts is deep.
Greg is married to Keegan Plecki and they have three sons: Jaxon, Griffin and Kanon.
ON MISSION TO BRING CHRIST TO THE BALLFIELD
FCA is integral in bringing the good news of Jesus Christ to students, athletes and teams on campus. But it shouldn’t stop there –
There needs to be an impact off campus as well.
Of more than 36 million students ages 5-18 who participated in organized sports in 2016, a whopping 60% were involved with teams outside of school.
According to research provided to TIME Magazine, America’s youth-sports industry has grown by 55% since 2010. It’s now a $15 billion market!
Parents, coaches and start-ups are investing unprecedented amounts of time and money into developing student athletes’ skills. With an end-game in mind, families are increasingly turning to travel ball and tournament teams rather than traditional rec leagues or school teams.
However, being on the road every weekend leaves little time for church.
The TIME article says, “Only 2% of high school athletes go on to play at the top level of college sports.”
No doubt – sports promote discipline, health, comradery and work ethic. But even if 50% of high school athletes went on to play at a professional level, would it be a worthwhile investment if souls are being neglected?
Our answer: FCA Club Baseball.
Our Christ-centered, travel baseball team headed up by Coach Arnold and Coach Plecki provides a way for players to showcase their skills in hopes of playing at the next level while being encouraged to do their best on and off the field.
Outside the foul lines, players will: 1) be poured into by different Christian ministries, 2) give back through local mission work, 3) have a team chaplain and 4) work to sharpen each other as teammates at FCA youth camp.
Our goals are to help provide these competitive young ballplayers with a growing athletic and spiritual foundation built upon Christ.
Thank you for your continued support and prayers for this endeavor – for the busy, distracted and lost souls of young ballplayers who might be brought closer to Jesus Christ for the Glory of God.
Please join us in welcoming our new coaches!