Kody Trujillo, Infielder
Columbia International University
I was a really late addition to the pride this summer and I can not thank the team enough for being so welcoming. I have never had an experience like this in my life, nor did I ever think I would be in a position like this if we are being completely honest. I can not thank Levi Parker enough for pushing me to join the team and go on this journey to the Dominican, because this has truly been the most eye opening journey for me in my entire life. I did not really know what I was getting myself into, but it has been the best decision I have ever made in my life. Coming to a close at the Dominican tonight, I can take a lot of things back with me to the United States. I have grown in my faith, including growing as a person in my 2 weeks here. I will never take anything for granted when I get back to the states after seeing how some families are living here in the villages. I can also take away from the trip how happy everyone still was even though they might be living in harsh conditions and were so content with what they have. It was truly unbelievable. Some people in the states can pay for anything they want and can still be miserable. That can tell you a lot about the culture here. We’ve done many of things here while playing baseball against some Dominican teams that were filled with a ton of talent. However that was not my favorite part of the trip. My favorite thing we’ve done is attending the boys and girls orphanage, we played games with them to interact. The girls orphanage everyone was so loving and so competitive with one another while playing kick ball with them. It was amazing watching their eyes light up while kicking the ball and seeing their smiles after they kicked the ball. The girls did not want us to leave and they were begging us to stay with them. I can speak for everyone when I say, it was very sad to leave the girls orphanage. With the boys at their orphanage, we had two games going on basketball and baseball. Some of these kids were playing barefooted and sliding all around the field. I have never seen anything like it in my life. They were so competitive and were flying all around the field giving it their all with holes in their gloves and were content with what they had to play with. All the needed was a field, a ball and a bat. The love these kids have down here for the game of baseball was even better in person than what you hear and see in the documentaries. I really hope we have made an impact on their lives, as much as they have made on my life. I am so grateful to be a part of this with all my teammates, because we may have been tired during some events but we picked each other up. I can’t thank them enough. Lastly, I would like to thank Coach Hudak for challenging me on this trip and impacting my life forever. This has truly giving me a different perspective on life and on baseball. It can bring people together from all around the world to learn about our savior Jesus Christ.