Diamond Sports Academy

Diamond Sports Academy Instructors

Angels_photo

MARK DORAN - (Hitting, Fielding, Catching, Owner)

Mark Doran is known internationally as a premier batting instructor. He played baseball and football at the University of Wisconsin, where he earned All-American award in baseball. Out of college, Mark was drafted in the first round by the California Angels in 1983 where he excelled at every level in the minor leagues.  He was on the major league roster for both the California Angels and Chicago White Sox. After learning hitting from Hall of Fame baseball player Rod Carew, Mark began teaching the proper techniques of hitting and fielding to young athletes.  Through training premier baseball athletes, Mark began meeting with top collegiate coaches in softball to learn the game of fastpitch.  As one of the only coaches nationally to train both major league baseball players and Olympic softball athletes, Mark has been known as one of the best hitting instructors in the nation. He has trained several USA Olympic softball players, Greek Olympic softball players, Canadian Olympic players, Major League baseball players, and NCAA baseball and softball athletes. Mark currently mentors coaches from national powers Washington, Florida St, Arizona St and others.

five_rings_photo

MARVIN FREEMAN - (Baseball Pitching)

Marvin Freeman is a former Major League Baseball pitcher who played from 1986 to 1996 for the Philadelphia Phillies, Atlanta Braves and Colorado Rockies. He worked as both a starting pitcher and a reliever in his career. In 1986, Marvin was the Philadelphia Phillies minor league “Pitcher of the Year.” He was the primary set-up man for the 1991 and 1992 National League Champions, Atlanta Braves. Also, he was the 1994 Denver Writers Associations “Rockies Pitcher of the Year.”  The Rockies signed Freeman in 1994, and won a spot in the Colorado rotation and turned in an impressive 10-2 record -- the best winning percentage in the NL. Also, he finished 4th in the Cy Young balloting in 1994.” Had he pitched enough innings to qualify for the ERA title, his 2.80 mark would have ranked second behind league leader Greg Maddux. Marvin is currently the head sophomore baseball coach at Rich Central High School.

Theresa_Carlton2

THERESA CARLTON - (Softball Pitching)

Theresa has been a pitching instructor here at Diamond Sports Academy since we opened in 1995.  Through the years she has also served as a coach for recreational leagues and 14U – 18U travel ball.  Last summer, she co-coached (with Ginny Posey) the 16U New Lenox Lightning to the ASA National Tournament in Texas.  She has coached and instructed girls from 7 years old through college.  You can see some of her students currently playing travel ball for various local programs and High School ball for Lincoln Way Central, Lincoln Way East, Marist, Homewood- Flossmoor, Ottawa, Andrew, Oswego East and Northside Prep.  Theresa has the unique opportunity to train with some of the best coaches and pitchers in the nation, which she uses as continued education of the game.  Theresa believes every girl can be a successful pitcher through hard work, solid fundamentals, great mental preparation and proper pitch sequencing and location.   Things you can expect from your training with Theresa are a strict focus on proper throwing and pitching fundamentals and a strong emphasis on leg drive and spin.  Without these very important elements, girls will overthrow with their shoulders, reach a plateau in speed, and possibly end their careers due to injury. 

 

Bob_Leffler2011

BOB LEFFLER (Baseball/Softball Hitting & Fielding)

A former Chicago Public League "All City" and "All Area" Baseball Player, Bob went on to compete both professionally as a free agent signee with the Kansas City Royals organization and semi- professionally with the Midloathian Mid sox.After retirement as a player, Bob dedicated himself to becoming a student of the game and has co-authored a baseball instructional training guide (Baseball Excellence) and currently participates in several internet baseball sites specialzing in instructing youth coaches on "how to" teach proper baseball fundamentals.As an ASEP/NFHS and ISHA certified Instructor, Bob has personally istructed players in both Hitting& Fielding; coached local and national travel teams at tha Junior, high school and college level. Of the last group of High school players under Bob's tutelage, 11 went on to play college baseball and throughtout his instructing and coaching career has enjoyed assisting more than 30 players to reach the college ranks

photo_jay_DSA

JAY AHRENDT - (Baseball & Softball, Hitting, Fielding and Catching)

Jay Ahrendt is a hitting/ catching instructor and was a product of Diamond Sports Academy. After being an All-American catcher at Illinois Wesleyan in 1996, Jay signed with the Baltimore Orioles in which he played 2 seasons. From there he went to Philadelphia Phillies organization and then played independent ball with the Atlantic City Surf of the Independent Atlantic League. He then signed with the San Diego Padres and finished his professional career in 2000. Through the years Jay has learned from some of the best instructors for both hitting and catching and passes that knowledge on to his students. Jay’s goal is to get each of his players to the next level thru work ethic and handling the mental approach to the game.

 

Jen_Raftery3

JEN RAFTERY - (Softball Pitching)

Jen played travel ball for the Orland Park Sparks. She also was a 4 year starter at Mother McAuley when she was in high school. While attend Saint Xavier University, she received many  awards. Since graduating she has coached at the following schools and travel teams:  Saint Xavier University, Bremen High School, Marist High School, White Sox Academy and is currently coaching the Orland Park A's. She has also worked as a pitching instructor at the following:  Chicago Bulls/White Sox Training Academy, Ballpark/BYG Sports and the Bo Jackson Sports Dome. Jen has many years of experience in the field of pitching. She works with pitchers of all ages. She focuses on proper technique and pitching fundamentals to avoid injury. Along with a strong emphasis on leg drive and proper opening/closing of the hips.