Whether it's been Brian Cole, Kedrick Martin or Kenny Roberts, Meridian has an impressive list of baseball players who grew and honed their skills within its neighborhoods. One youth sports program celebrating the end of summer games aims to keep it that way.
Over 200 young athletes, coaches and parents filled the third floor of Meridian city hall for the award ceremony of the third annual Magnolia Baseball Association. Commissioner Gregory Baylor says the organization aims to bring baseball to the magnolia area.
Baylor says the program is there in hopes it be able to help some young child that doesn't have the opportunity to play baseball.
"To bring some character in them," says Baylor. "Let them know about discipline, not only about baseball, but about discipline as well."
Before the youth received their trophies, they listened to a guest speaker, former Meridian little leaguer and pro baseball player Kedrick Martin.
"Ah man, it's amazing... just to watch them grow up and develop these talents... the great gift that God gave them."
Before getting drafted by the Miami Marlins in 2006, Martin set the record for most strike-outs in a game at both Meridian High School and Meridian Community College. He's now the CEO of K' Zone, a club that will teach young baseball and softball players in the Queen City what Martin believes to be the most important part of the game.
"They need the fundamentals. They really need the fundamentals."