Ugandan Baseball Hopeful Rallies Twitter To Support His Dream | The Remarkable Resolve Of Kasumba Dennis

Social media and Twitter in particular can be vile and toxic place. But every once in a while, we see the power of its connectivity and humans rallying together for good.

Who Is Kasumba Dennis?

A young Ugandan baseball player named Kasumba Dennis has been posting videos of himself training and practicing his baseball skills, including stringing a seriously worn catcher’s mitt and using makeshift equipment all in the name of chasing his dream.

Dennis hopes to one day be a catcher in the Major Leagues.

According to his Twitter posts he makes his own equipment because he doesn’t have the money to afford baseball equipment and gym time consistently.

Baseball fans and Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Walker Buehler have all worked to help this young man get better equipment to chase his dream.

Seattle Mariners shortstop J.P. Crawford also offered to help.

 

Dennis’ commitment to getting better is strong. His desire to work despite the clear disadvantages is incredible.

Playing elite level baseball in America at the youth level costs tens of thousands of dollars annually between leagues, private coaching, etc.

 

A person’s economic status shouldn’t determine their ability to pursue their athletic dreams.

The videos began garnering attention last Friday. As they continue to gain traction and pitchers and catchers start to report for spring training, it’s likely MLB and some teams get involved in sending over equipment and possibly getting Dennis in an environment where he can be scouted properly.

The African continent does not have a rich history of MLB players, but if he’s good enough to make the big leagues Dennis wouldn’t be the first.

First African-Born MLB Player

In 2017 Gift Ngoepe, then of the Pittsburgh Pirates, became the first African-born player in MLB history.

Last year, Dennis’ countrymen, Ben Serunkuma and Umar Male became the first Ugandan-born players to sign a professional baseball contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Both players will began their professional careers at the Dodgers Academy in the Dominican Republic.

“The Dodgers hope the success of these three young men will continue to grow the sport and inspire a new crop of potential professionals players from the Pearl of Africa,” commented¬†Will Nolden, a Youth Development coach for the Dodgers.

Perhaps the continent can be an untapped resource of baseball talent. The sport is struggling at the MLB level when it comes to Black participation.

According to The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport (TIDES), Major League Baseball has a smaller percentage of Black players now than it has had in any year since the early 1990s.

On Opening Day 2022 38% were players of color. About 28.5 percent of those players were Hispanic or Latino, 1.9 percent were Asian players, and less than 1 percent were Hawaiian/Pacific Islander or Native American.

Black players represented only 7.2 percent of all MLB players at the start of last season.

This has been an issue MLB has supposedly taken seriously over the last several years, but the results don’t seem to be changing.

Maybe investment in nations and regions where the populations are overwhelmingly Black would help change the situation, if that’s what the people in charge of the MLB really want.

Regardless, seeing people rally behind Dennis in support of his dream is a positive sign that somewhere in this unforgiving world that people do want to see and do good.

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