A.J. Vukovich hosts baseball camp for the next generation

Professional baseball player, A.J. Vukovich teamed up with Wilmot High School to instruct local kids
Posted at 6:30 PM, Nov 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-22 19:30:05-05

WILMOT, Wis. — It feels like yesterday that East Troy native A.J. Vukovich was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks.

"It's been really good. They say the first couple of years you're going to learn the most in all your years of baseball," says Vukovich.

Comprehending those lessons, A.J.'s bat has made its mark in the minors. This past season, A.J. broke eight batting records while playing for the Hillsboro Hops, plus a new record for stolen bases.

"Probably the biggest thing I've learned so far is how to deal with failure becaus, we are playing so much, and you are playing against so many good guys, that you will fail. I've just learned how to deal with them, sort of learned how to pace myself, and learn the ins and outs of my swings. So, when I'm not doing well, I can get by and try and be the best player I can be," says A.J.

So when A.J. decided to host a camp with Wilmot High School for the next generation of sluggers, spots filled up fast.

"To be able to do something like this is awesome. I want to teach them to love the game at a young age. I know my parents put me in things at a young age that helped me love the game. I think if they can learn something here and figure stuff out that maybe I told them or one of the other guys, it could stick with them for a long time. Then they will stick with it for a long time," says A.J.

Wanting to make the most of the day, A.J. invited mentors of his own.

"I'm not a big guy where I don't want it to be all about me. I want to share experiences with the guys that got me here, like my buddy Trevor with the Blue Jays. He's been a great mentor for me since I got into pro baseball, and he's taught me a lot. So to have him here helping out means a lot because we've built a great friendship, and we do a lot of these things together," says A.J.

Not just an athlete, but an advocate for the game, A.J. gave plenty of tips to become a great hitter. But his most important message was only swing if you enjoy it.

"I tell them to come to the field every day with a smile. I think it will change their perspective on baseball. Hopefully, I have a positive impact on them," says A.J.

As for A.J., he'll be around until January, working hard himself. Looking forward to the day he gets to step up to the plate in the big leagues.

"I'm doing well where I'm at now but I want to keep getting better so when I get that call, I'll be ready. I'm just going to take things one day at a time. I'm good where I'm at now, and it's honestly given me more drive to keep seeing where I can take this thing," says A.J.

When A.J. takes those swings, you can bet he'll be back to tell these kids all about it.

*Special thanks to the Wilmot HS baseball program for allowing the camp to be held at their facilities and help with instruction. Registration fees from this camp were donated to the team to help them succeed this upcoming season.*

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