Young Māori assist with development of Baseball in NZ

By Wikitōria Day
  • Auckland

Baseball has been on the rise here in NZ for the past couple of years.  Young Māori players such as Riki Paewai and Boss Moanaroa have assisted with the development of baseball here and continue to offer their encouragement to baseballers across all age levels. 

It's the game these men are passionate about.

Former Boston Red Sox player Boss Moanaroa has recently returned home to play alongside Baseball NZ's pitching coach Riki Paewai. 

Moanaroa says he has come home, "Just to help these guys out because they are so new to the game and to spread my experience with them and to show them how to play the game the right way."

Despite the short amount of time baseball has been played in this part of the world, the talent is evident amongst our Māori youth.

"It's just one of those things where the country is getting exposure to the game and it's really showing," says Moanaroa.

New Zealand has finally had the chance to showcase their skills on an international stage and now our own players can look forward to their respective Baseball World Cup events as well as the World Baseball Classic in 2017.

New Zealand Baseball pitching coach Riki Paewai says, "Since baseball has been taken out of the Olympics, it's the premier event for baseball around the world.  Last year, we went in unranked with our first ever men's team at 119th and came out 27th."

Moanaroa has his own plans.  He'll travel around the world to various baseball events - the perfect way to improve his playing skills.

"I'm looking at going to independent ball in America first to get a couple months of baseball there and at the end of the year I'll be going to Japan to play professionally," he adds.

With experienced Māori like this duo, baseball in NZ is set to reach new levels.