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Diamond Baseball marks one year


Diamond Baseball Simcox Academy, 144 West End Ave., is celebrating its one-year anniversary with plans to expand.

“It’s turned out better than I could have possible imagined,” owner Jeff Senzel said.

“You start out a business with the hopes that the location is good, that it will catch on, that it’s something people will use,” he added.

Diamond Baseball is an indoor baseball and softball training facility, and Senzel said he hopes to add outdoor fields off Snyder Road in the next year.

“We’re right in the process of building four outdoor fields. They’re going to be … at Campbell Station and Snyder.

“We’re hoping to start construction this spring and should be done, hopefully for late fall, definitely for spring next year,” Senzel said.

In the past year, Diamond Baseball has become a resource for local high school baseball teams looking for indoor practice space. In addition, Diamond Baseball runs teams of its own out of its West End Avenue base of operations.


“The other great thing is, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes approached us and we do a fellowship here the first Saturday of every month.

“Guest speakers have included, [The University of Tennessee] grad Nick Hernandez [and major leaguer] Brett Carroll out of Bearden High School,” Senzel said.

“Having showcased guys like that come speak to these kids is pretty incredible,” he added.

Anyone can reserve time for batting cages or pitching mounds. Senzel also rents out the facility for an entire night.

“We’ve probably done 15 of those in the first year we’ve been open,” he said.

Senzel is proud of the fact the entire facility is heated and air-conditioned, and that Diamond Baseball offers a waiting area for families, complete with comfortable chairs, tables, televisions and even video games.

Diamond Baseball also regularly holds baseball or softball camps.

“We try to do as much for the community as we can,” Senzel said.

“I think the best thing is when you get that letter … or that call that says, you know, ‘Jim made the high school or middle school team, and it’s just really a tribute to all the hard work your guys put in here.’

“I know it’s a business, and I know you want to do well and make money, but I think that’s the biggest thrill of all,” he added.

Senzel works with former UT assistant baseball coach Larry Simcox, now director of instruction at Diamond Baseball.

The two are joined by a host of instructors including Nate Henderson, Jeremy Kemp, India Chiles, Danielle Pieroni, Brian Hochevar, Megan Rhodes, former major league pitcher Atlee Hammaker, Farragut High School grad Kyle Waldrop, Michael McHenry and Jordan Czarniecki.

“We’ve been blessed with some great instructors,” Senzel said.

“It’s been phenomenal. I love doing this,” he added.

Winter hours are 3 to 9 p.m., Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturdays, and 1 to 6 p.m., Sundays.

Visit www.diamondbaseball-tn.com or call 865-288-3624.

 

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