Brad Cesmat’s Baseball AZ: Extra Innings East Valley

“You talk about spring training and everybody has the baseball bug — all fun and games,” said Steve Scarsone, former major league baseball player. “You get the bug and want to do hitting yourself and this is the place to come down and hit.”

Scarsone is talking about Extra Innings East Valley in Mesa, Arizona.

Athletes of any age or those who just want to hit some balls are getting the opportunity to test out their skills in the state-of-the-art indoor baseball and softball training center.

“We have four coin-operated batting cages, so a family can come in and jump in that cage, find some tokens and each family member can hit a different type of pitch,” Scarsone said. “It’s automated, so you can adjust from softball or baseball and to different speeds.”

The token-operated batting cages aren’t the only thing locals and spring training visitors can experience when they come to Extra Innings East Valley.“We also have the full-size cages,” Scarsone said. “They have all the screens, balls, machines and everything there for you, and that’s when the teams really take advantage of those areas.”

The tunnels are rented out by a lot of schools or club teams looking to work on their hitting and pitching techniques.

“It’s a great, safe, clean environment to work on your game,” Scarsone said.

The training center even has a pro shop carrying top-of-the-line equipment and apparel and offers year-round baseball and softball instruction.

Scarsone, who is currently a Triple AAA manager with the Oakland A’s, gives his time to instruct those looking to perfect their game.

“We provide lessons with former major league players, old guys like me, but we know our way around the game a little bit and help the young kids all the way through high school,” Scarsone said.

This place is also a popular hangout for major league baseball players to come in and practice or just stop by and say hello.

“I think the biggest feedback I hear is folks are really complimentary about the kind of people that work here,” Scarsone said. “Whether it’s the instructors, who are very courteous to work with the players, to the people at the front desk.”

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