Legends On Deck

Off-season with Big Game James

Off-Season with Big Game James

Off-season with Big Game James; Off-season breaks are sometimes rear for a first-year minor league player. This Saturday, November 23rd, I caught up with minor leaguer James Big Papi Rolle (ask) “Big Game James” at the Freedom Farm baseball park watching a game where he grew up.

Playing in the Dominican Summer League

I asked him, James; How was your first minor league season? Not too bad, he said. I had to adjust and learn how to act like a ballplayer at that level. How? The first time I hit a fly ball, I got a cramp and jogged to first base. The second time I did that, was a fifty dollars fine. He said I never did that again; Eventually, told that you always run to your position, and you must run out every ball you hit.

Every day at that level of baseball was hard work; It was a daily grind. And I had to learn how to get tough fast and adapt to the new culture of baseball in the Dominican Summer League.

Late Start to my Season
Off-season with Big Game James

Orioles Minor Leaguer James Rolle:

Getting into the league a month and nine days after the season started, saw James assigned to the DLS Orioles1 July 8th, 2019, where he got one at-bat before moving to the DLS Orioles2 the next day.

The Baltimore Orioles signed free agent 1B James Rolle to a minor league contract on April 24th, 2019.

On July 9th, 2019, James started his first game for the DSL Orioles at first base, where he went 1 for 3.

Hungry and Egar to learn:
Baltimore Orioles signed free agent 1B James Rolle to a minor league contract

Big Game James Rolle:

I ask James how he was able to go down the DSL and start hitting the ball so quickly? He said his preparation at IElite Baseball Academy and his play in the Freedom Farm league along with the many showcases he went too.

Every day in the DSL was different; Furthermore, the pitchers threw the ball hard with good secondary pitches; they could hit spots. Hence, as a hitter, I also had to adjust my approach to the ball.

Off-season with Big Game James:
Off-season with Big Game James

Big Games James .286 Batting Average

 

James Rolle led his team in home runs with five and finished the season with a .286 batting average, which third on the DSL Orioles2. Whiles at home these few days, James gets in his work at IElte and spends Saturdays at the park watching baseball.

Finally, next up for Big Game James. The Don’t Blink 242 Home Run Derby in Paradise, January 4th, 2020. See you all in Paradise to the Big Show.

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Jeff Francis

Office Assistant at Wynn Bahamas Ltd
Jeffrey was born on April 29th, 1961, in Nassau, Bahamas to Rejoiner Ann Rolle and Jerome James Francis Etienne.

Married to Andrea G. Rolle-Francis, they have two daughters; Janae Latoya Francis, a graduate of Allegany College of Maryland, and Jessica Lee Francis a graduate Potomac State College West Virginia University in Kyser West Virginia.

Jeffrey was coaching the sport of baseball from 1980 at the age of 18 years old because he loved the sport as a kid. He started listening to the game over the radio out of Miami Florida in the late 60s and in the early 70s started playing the game locally in various local leagues right up to the premier senior league; a league where all of the current Bahamian minor leaguers played.

In 1982, Jeffrey had an invite to a three day tryout with the New York Yankees in Hollywood Florida, which was an awesome experience that is lasting a life time memory for him.

Jeffrey has been following the Bahamian baseball players in the minor leagues since 1999 with Angelo Burrows, but found greater interest with the signing of Antoan Richardson in 2005. He also writes a year end review on their play on his Facebook page, Baseball Bahamas, and he has a website with the same name. He has a great following and would love to expose the baseball players to a bigger worldwide audience.

He has a good relationship with all the players because he personally coached most of them.

His favorite MLB Team is the Detroit Tigers from 1969.
Jeff Francis
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