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DHS baseball camp Saturday

With the annual Demopolis Baseball Camp now only a day away, DHS head coach and camp organizer James Moody says this year’s edition will have an added feature it hasn’t had for years: good weather.

Although the Weather Channel’s official forecast calls for a “Mostly Cloudy” day, the precipitation chances are only 20 percent and if any rain does fall, it is expected well after the camp finishes at noon.

“The weather is going to be decent,” says Moody. “This will be the first time in a few years we’ll be outside.”

Being outdoors does more for the camp, Moody says, than just giving participants a dose of fresh air.

“There’s so much more you can do outside,” he says, adding that with all the bats and balls involved, the chances of minor accidents is also reduced.

“We’re excited,” he says. “We’ve had a good response. We’d like to have a big crowd, since we feel like we really have something to offer the kids.”

Moody had several other important bits of information related to the camp which parents and participants should be aware of:

* Atlanta Braves second baseman Marcus Giles will unfortunately not be able to attend as previously expected, but another professional baseball player from the San Diego Padres organization will likely be on hand in his place.

* The camp is open to any ballplayers between the ages of six and high school age. If younger participants have bats of their own, they are strongly encouraged to bring them. If they do not, however, equipment will be provided.

* Participants are not required to pre-register. They are encouraged, however, to arrive between 7:30 and 7:45 a.m. Saturday at the Demopolis High baseball field for registration, in order for the camp to get underway at its scheduled 8 a.m. starting time.

In addition to several former Demopolis players who will be helping administer the camp, three professional baseball players will also be taking part: Jake Peavy, Scott Sullivan, and Jeremy Brown.

San Diego Padres ace Peavy led the National League in earned run average in 2004 and built on that season in 2005, when he led the league in strikeouts, had a 2.88 ERA, and started 5-0 on his way to an All-Star appearance. The Cy Young candidate is a native of Mobile and attended St. Paul’s Episcopal High School before being signed by the Padres.

Sullivan is a graduate of Pickens Academy in Carrolton and attended Marion Military Institute as well. He graduated from Auburn in 1993 and is a 10-year veteran of the Major Leagues whose most recent Major League experience was as a relief pitcher with the Kansas City Royals. He has a career record of 40-28 and has appeared in more than 500 Major League games.

Brown is a native of Birmingham who was a two-time All-SEC catcher at the University of Alabama before being signed by the Oakland A’s organization. When healthy, he has been the regular starting catcher for the Double-A Midland Rockhounds for the last three seasons.

Cost for the camp is $30 per participant. The camp will run from 8 a.m. to noon. Campers will need to bring a pair of tennis shoes in case of rain.

Moody wished to thank Toxey Haas of Mossy Oak and Chris Hawley of Mossy Oak Properties, the camp’s corporate sponsors, for their support of the event.

For more information, contact James Moody at Demopolis High, 289-0294.