Gulf Coast Rays host fundRAYser

Published: Monday, January 13, 2014 at 12:43 PM.

Sports teach kids how to be a team player, how to communicate and how to be accountable. They also cost a lot of money.

For the past several years the Gulf Coast Rays, formally Florida Rays, have been giving boys 8-years-old and younger from Destin to Panama City the chance to play America 's favorite past-time. This year, the coaches are hoping to make the sport even more accessible.

"It can get expensive pretty quick," said Assistant Coach Mike Jersey. "The spring and summer season could cost anywhere between $1,200 to $1,400 for one player. The cost eliminates so many kids right away."

To help offset costs, the team is hosting a fundraiser, Jan. 18 at the Seascape Golf Club, where Jersey is the golf professional.

"The goal is to go out and fundraise so mom and dad don't have to pay so much out of pocket," Jersey said. "The more money we raise, the more opportunities."

Jersey has an evident passion for sports. He played baseball in college and assists coaching the South Walton High School baseball team. He's passed that talent on to his son Skyler, 8. He has been coaching his son's various teams since he first started playing.

"I knew early on he was going to be a little athlete," Jersey said. "He's loved playing baseball since he was born."

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