Name: Ronnie Morales
9 to 5: Executive Director @ West Raleigh Baseball Association
MLB Raleigh Role: Leader of the field revitalization team on the East Raleigh Boys Club Baseball Field
Ronnie Morales is the Executive Director at West Raleigh Baseball Association, one of the region’s top youth baseball clubs. West Raleigh has produced major league talents such as former AL MVP Josh Hamilton, former A’s catcher Landon Powell (who caught a no-hitter in 2010), A’s pitcher Seth Frankoff and catcher Tim Federowicz (who has caught for the Cubs, Dodgers, Astros and is currently with the Indians organization) among many others.
When we set out on the goal to bring together the community around a movement to bring MLB to Raleigh, we knew getting West Raleigh on board would be important. What we didn’t know was just how important. After pitching our idea for MLB Raleigh, the first question from Ronnie was “Where do we sign up to help?”
One of our initiatives is to help promote baseball in every part of our city and region. Our first project is the revitalization of the Boys Club’s baseball field in East Raleigh. We knew doing this right would take a team of professionals. West Raleigh is known for having some of the most well-manicured facilities in our area and has been the leader of the youth baseball in Raleigh since the late 50s. Having them help with the field fix-up was going to be vital.
Only one week after our conversation, Ronnie informed us that he had put together a team that wanted to help make this happen. He partnered with Kevin Ennis of Eco Turf Inc, Robbie Stokes of Stokes Lawn Care and Damian Rower of P&R Property consulting. In no time they had already worked out the logistics and scheduling for scraping the former infield, leveling, grading and adding a pro-style clay mix to the field.
Not only did he and his team take the initiative in coordinating the project, but also showed amazing follow through. In less than a month, the East Raleigh field had a brand new infield that was leveled, raked and dragged.
Work underway over at the @WakeBGC baseball field in East Raleigh. Our field pros are out here leveling, grading, & adding a clay mix to the infield.
— MLBRaleigh (@MLBRaleigh) April 23, 2019
This type of community-first mentality from Ronnie and his team is what the MLB Raleigh project is all about and what we believe sets our region apart. We caught up with Ronnie to ask him more about what he does and why he answered the call to help us promote baseball in areas of need.
What is your role at West Raleigh Baseball Association and within the community?
I do work manicuring the fields, business development and literally everything in between at West Raleigh. I’m able to get it all done with the help of amazing volunteers. With as many moving parts as there is to run a very credible youth baseball organization, I rely heavily on the strength of our families and community to pull it off. That is why we jump at opportunities to help others in need. More than the fun stuff in my job description, the Board of Directors and I are all about building a positive culture for our kids to grow into themselves as great humans and not just ballplayers. Baseball is just the vehicle to raise our kids the right way here at West Raleigh and to see the bigger picture of helping others along the way.
How are you helping MLB Raleigh and why have you decided to do so?
We are helping MLB Raleigh with one of their key initiatives of rebuilding a baseball filed for the Raleigh Boys Club. The reason we decided to join in is very simple. By helping with this initiative, we get to help kids play baseball and grow the game we all love so much! It feels great knowing we are making an immediate impact with our friends at MLB Raleigh to bring smiles to the faces of many kids! Gracious & honored to be a part of it!
Why do you believe an MLB team would work in Raleigh/ the Triangle?
Without an MLB team here, this place is hungry for baseball. Being in the youth circuit, we can see firsthand from the ground up the strong roots of baseball here in the Triangle. MLB coming to Raleigh would only synergize and enhance that experience for the already bonafide baseball community.