Special needs baseball league hopes to start in LaGrange
By Jenna Oden
Taylor Duncan of Dallas, Georgia, couldn’t find a baseball team that would allow him to play baseball when he was younger, and it inspired him to create Alternative Baseball.
The nonprofit, developmental baseball program for teens and adults with autism and special needs has teams across the country and is looking to expand into LaGrange.
“We have received lots of interest out of LaGrange for players to start. We need to find a coach manager to steer head it,” Duncan said. “We are actively looking for a coach to help set up a team. All you have to do is go online and fill out a form. There is something for everyone.”
There are no specific qualifications to be a coach, according to Duncan, except a background check and a passion for others.
“We go and do what we can to improve both the players physical and social skills,” Duncan said. “I am on the autism spectrum myself and started this in 2016 because I realized there is a need for more resources everywhere. Once you graduate from high school, there really is nothing.”
Newnan, Columbus, Phenix City and Auburn currently have teams.
Duncan said the main goal is to serve to the community and make America’s past-time available to those who have never had the opportunity before.
“This is for players ages 15 and older. All players play independently and with all disabilities,” Duncan said. “This is a good outlet for them, and everyone is welcome to try.”
According to Duncan, the time of the baseball season can be up to the coach’s discretion whether spring, summer or fall.
“I was diagnosed with autism at the age of 4, and after I played one year in the youth league, the coach the next year cut me from the team because they thought I didn’t belong there,” Duncan said. “Some of our players want to do things and are capable, we just need to give them the opportunity.”
To apply to be a coach or start an Alternative Baseball club in the community go to alternativebaseball.org/expansion to fill out an application or call (770) 313-1762.