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Maplezone Sports Institute’s (MSI) mission is to create a safe training environment for athletes of all ages and abilities which allow them the opportunity to maximize their athletic performance potential. MSI is committed to utilizing our expert coaches, state of the art facilities, tournament venues, and customized training programs to efficiently enhance the athletes' training and exposure experience. MSI makes you better – ON and OFF the field!!


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Athletic Training Baseball Wellness

What Makes You So Special?

September 14, 2018
I don’t intend for this to be as challenging as the title may make it seem. I would just like to make you think a little bit…   So what makes you so special?   Is it your talent? Your work ethic? Your smarts? Your grit? Your character?   Which one is it? Is it multiple? And does that trait EXPIRE?   One of these traits that I listed just now absolutely expires. Which one you ask? TALENT! At some point in your career, you will look around and every single player on the field will be as talented as you (or even more talented).   It may be Little League. It may be High School. It may be College. It may be the MLB. It honestly completely depends on the player. The only thing that I can tell you for certain is that day will come.   And that’s the day where you will have to ask yourself the question, “what makes me so special?”   If it’s only your talent, your career is done. If it’s one, a couple, or all of those other characteristics listed above, then you still have a fighting chance.   Do you really think Mike Trout is the most naturally gifted player on the planet? Heck no, however, he is still the BEST. You will find players more physical, faster, with more arm strength, and more bat speed at any level of pro baseball. So what makes Mike Trout, Mike Trout then? All the other things done repeatedly on a daily basis year after year.   Talent may work for you now, but it won’t always. Take pride in becoming a complete player AND man. Be obsessed.  Ken Spangenberg Director of Baseball Maplezone Sports Institute
Athletic Training Baseball Wellness

Elbow Up, Foot Down, & Don’t Mess Up!

September 14, 2018
I’m no dope. I know that the majority of people reading this are parents and/or adults. Sure maybe you forward it on to your son or make him read it from time to time, but not many 10u to 18u players are actually looking forward to opening an email on Monday that MAY help them with their game (if you are under 18yrs old and do that…props to you! I never would have.).   So keeping that in mind, PARENTS…this one is for you!   Now humor me for a second…   Imagine you have a really important, time sensitive document (or insert whatever work project you may have) in front of you. Now imagine that your entire work is watching you try to complete this project AND so is your family. On top of that, it’s a really tricky project, and it needs to be done NOW!   That’s a pretty precarious situation right!?   Now let’s add another level of difficultly to it! As you’re doing this super important, complexed task (let’s say that you’re doing a cost analysis for a huge merger for argument’s sake), everyone is yelling different commands at you…   “No I think you should enter 57,586 instead of 56,8475!”   “Make sure to add correctly!”   “Keep your elbow up while you’re typing!”   “Don’t mess up!”   Does this sound like the optimal conditions to perform well in? HIGHLY DOUBT IT!   So by now parents, I bet you know what I’m getting at. This is what I see literally every time I watch a baseball game.   And it’s no fault of yours….you love the heck out of your son and want to help. You just don’t realize what you’re actually doing while yelling out these commands.   Let’s strive to create an environment where players LOVE playing the game. LOVE competing. And aren’t scared of what going 0-2 or what the car ride home might look like.   Baseball is really, really hard. Let’s all remember that one. Be obsessed. Ken Spangenberg Director of Baseball Maplezone Sports Institute
Athletic Training Baseball Wellness

Pressure is a Privilege

September 14, 2018
As the fall baseball season is quickly approaching us, I want to remind everyone of one thing…pressure is a privilege!    Not everybody is lucky enough to play this game like you are right now, regardless of the level. We EARN the right to have pressure put on us. We EARN the right to be in pressure filled situations. So instead of allowing the pressure to change your game, cherish that you GET to play under pressure.   Nervous about getting an offer to play in college? Only 6.8% of high school players GET to play in college, so regardless of what colleges are talking to you, enjoy the fact that they are talking to you because thousands of other players would kill to be in your shoes.   Scared about the first week of practice with a new team? I am willing to bet other players were cut from that team and would trade places with you in a second to be at that practice. Go out and have fun playing the game.   Too often we try to be tough guys and pretend like we don’t feel any pressure…but let’s be honest, we do. We’re not robots. Don’t fight it, embrace it. Realize that you’re feeling pressure because you’ve earned the right to be in tough situations.   Pressure is a privilege. Earn it. Be obsessed. Ken Spangenberg Director of Baseball Maplezone Sports Institute
Athletic Training Baseball Wellness

The Why

September 14, 2018
“Don’t let the pressure exceed the pleasure.”-Joe Madden (Cub’s Manager)   This quote should be plastered absolutely everywhere.   There is SO much pressure placed on players anymore…both internally and externally.    Thanks to social media, we all know what every single player in the nation is doing/getting. This creates a great deal more pressure on players today…   I NEED to get an offer, make THE team, hit THAT number. The list goes on and on.   This causes players to forget why they are even playing the game in the first place! The end up playing to accomplish those things, rather than playing because they love the game.   When you feel yourself getting too stressed, remember why you decided to pick up a bat for the first time when you were 4yrs old…I bet it wasn’t to get a scholarship!   And the funny thing is, once you stop worrying about the recognition and focus on playing the game you love, you’ll be more successful.   Play because you love the game, not because you love recognition. Be obsessed. Ken Spangenberg Director of Baseball Maplezone Sports Institute


We are grateful for the experience that Ethan is getting and appreciate all you and the other coaches do for the kids. You guys are very good with the kids run a great program.

Crissi, MSI Parent

We just wanted to thank you for all your help with Jonathan. Today on Super Bowl Sunday Jonathan verbally committed to the Golden Rams of West Chester. Their coach was very excited about his commitment and sees him as one of his top guys for the next four years. The MuckDawgs program has been a great experience for Jonathan right from day one, verses where we came from. Jonathan has worked hard right from the start when you told him to fill out his jersey. You have given him the tools he needs to be successful on the field and in life. We are very thankful for all your help!

Alan & Gretchen, MSI Parents

Brooke is throwing her change-ups and they are working big time! The girls were way ahead of the pitch. Brooke could not stop smiling!
Nice work coach!

Scott, MSI Lesson Client

I wanted to thank you again for putting on a great winter lacrosse league. This was our first year in your league, and it was the best winter league we have played. We will definitely be participating next year.

Jeff, MSI Lacrosse League Client

The instruction and guidance offered to Michael by Corey during a batting session is truly appreciated. Just to see Michael’s expression when he gets that “ha-ha” moment after Corey improves his swing or stance is priceless. Everyone at MSI is truly wonderful. Please convey my Thank you!

Teresa Eze , MSI Parent

We couldn’t be happier, Rizz is a great instructor!

Tom Gartland, MSI Lesson Client

My son Ryan Beyer just completed his 8th pitching lesson with Todd Rizzo last Thursday, and I just wanted you to know how much Todd did to help Ryan improve. I was really impressed with how Coach Rizzo explained things to Ryan in an adult way, but a style that was easy for a kid to understand. He gave Ryan a lot of confidence and re-assurance as to his delivery mechanics and his abilities. I have to say that I was amazed and impressed by Coach Rizzos ability to spot even the smallest mechanical flaw and explain how it impacted his pitches in both location and velocity. Ryan has a pretty decent arm for a 10 year old kid, but last year, he really struggled with his control. He used to walk more than he struck out. This year, his first game at BYC, he threw 33 pitches, 28 of them were strikes, and he struck out the first 9 guys he faced. Needless to say, he was walking around on 3 feet of air after the game. I’ve never seen my son so happy and proud. So, I just wanted to let you know, since you are the general manager of MSI, that Todd did an outstanding job with my son. Cant say enough good things about the guy!! The lessons were super helpful and effective. Thanks

Brad Beyer, MSI Lesson Client

Chris, Just wanted to say you did a hell of a job getting everybody 3 pool play games. I’m sure it was a scheduling nightmare. That’s why you’re the best!!

Tom Hunter, MSI Tournament Client

Andrew did a great job with Daniel, he really liked his lesson. We will be putting him on schedule for lesson every week till the start of the season in March.

Paul Jacobs, MSI Parent

Coach Ty is an amazing coach. He provides great insight to the game inside the game. He develops the player physically as well as mentally. My son has been going to Coach Ty for years. I am amazed how much knowledge he has about the game as well as his demands in each session. He is the main reason why we have joined the MSI Team this year.

Dexter Felder, MSI Parent

Thank you very much for allowing me and my teammates to use your facility, it’s the perfect place to get everything we need done to get ready for the upcoming season!

Edwin Lee, Goldey-Beacom College 1B/OF

Our sessions with Ty Gainey have been outstanding. Ty really cares about my son and his baseball progress. We will continue to seek out sessions with Ty as my son progresses through high school.

Joel Lang, MSI Lesson Client

We had a wonderful first session with Ty. He was very informative, patient and humorous with my son. My son really enjoyed his lesson, thought it was very helpful and is looking forward to next Monday.

Shannan Roberts, MSI Lesson Client

Our MSI experience has been amazing. My daughter is about to start her 3rd year of softball. Michelle has been incredible with her. She is very new to catching and her first 2 lessons have helped her gain some confidence. She is so excited for her next lesson! We will definitely continue with lessons and clinics.

Julie Bossler, MSI Lesson Client

Session was great. Todd Rizzo was excellent with my two boys.
The 2 player small group package is a good fit. I plan to roll them through batting, fielding, catching and then back to pitching.

Ray Lewis, MSI Lesson Client

I cannot say more about how wonderful Cory is with my son!! He has made such a positive impact on my son’s hitting and is always kind and respectful of him. I constantly recommend him to my many baseball mom friends!!!

Julie McHugh, MSI Lesson Client

My son Cole raved about his experience with Carlos. This is his first year in little league and he has been very intimidated with batting. We are hoping the lessons will give him more skill and confidence so he can enjoy his experience to the fullest. So far, things seem great.

Lori Captain, MSI Lesson Client

I am so happy with MapleZone especially with Todd Rizzo. He has worked with my son so much this past winter and Jackson is off to a great start of his high school season and is direct reflection of the work with Coach Rizzo. Thank you so much!

Ian Kelly, MSI Lesson Client

Nick did a great job instructing my son Patrick. He took the time to teach him the proper mechanics and build his confidence at the same time… I was very impressed with Nicks ability to get through to my son and get him to respond much better than I could.

Rick Godfrey, MSI Lesson Client