Ripken, Mets' Nomo to team on Dec. youth camp in Hawaii International studies and baseball will be focus

September 17, 1998|By Jon Morgan | Jon Morgan,SUN STAFF

You've gotten your kid the finest Louisville Slugger bats, the most expensive fielder's glove, and season tickets to Orioles games. What's left?

How about five days in Hawaii with Cal Ripken and New York Mets pitcher Hideo Nomo learning how to handle line drives and chopsticks?

Ripken was expected to announce plans today to hold the first "international baseball camp" with Nomo Dec. 25-30. Nomo is the first player to be named an All-Star in both Japan and the United States.

The camp will accept boys and girls ages 10 to 16 from the United States and Japan, where Nomo, 30, began his career and is as revered as Ripken, 38, is in America.

Baseball will be blended with international studies at the camp, which will cost $2,450 including airfare, uniforms and lodging at the Outrigger Hotel in Honolulu.

Ray Clark, general manager of The Marketing Arm, a Dallas-based sports marketing and athlete representation firm, said thousands of sports figures conduct such camps, which can be lucrative.

"It's not a huge money-maker compared to what they earn on the field but can be a significant source of off-field income for a player," he said.

Ira Rainess, general counsel for The Tufton Group, which handles Ripken's commercial endorsement work, said Ripken and Nomo will probably lose money on the camp debut, but will get a chance to test the market.

Daily baseball schooling will be shared by Nomo and three Ripkens: Cal; his brother Bill, a former infielder for the Orioles, Rangers, Indians and Tigers; and their father, former Orioles manager Cal Sr. Japanese-English interpreters will be on staff, said Rainess.

Attendance will be limited to 250 campers on a first-come, first-serve basis, with 100 slots each for mainland American and Japanese students, and 50 for Hawaiian youth. For information, call 888-747-8536.

Pub Date: 9/17/98

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