Delegation to promote baseball arrives in Ghana

2/2/2007 - MLB

ACCRA, Ghana -- A delegation headed by Hall of Famer Dave
Winfield and former Chicago Cubs and San Francisco Giants manager
Dusty Baker arrived in Ghana on Friday for a goodwill trip aimed at
promoting the sport in a region where little is known about it.

The delegation also includes New York Mets general manager Omar
Minaya, Major League Baseball vice president Bob Watson and former
major leaguers Reggie Smith an Al Jackson.

"I believe it's never too late to begin introducing the
American game [baseball] to our Ghanaian youth, and others in
Africa just as we've done in soccer. It is never too late to learn
anything," said Joshua Benamba, a final year university student.

The delegation is expected to donate baseball equipment,
organize baseball clinics and visit schools in Accra. It also will
tour the coast and meet with President John Kufour on Monday before
returning to the United States the next day.

"I feel good about the purpose of this trip, which is also to
promote a game that unites and strengthen people," Minaya said at
the welcoming reception. "I feel the enthusiasm in these young
guys to adopt the game. They are serious and we are ready to go to
limits with them."

Daniel Morde, a soccer fan from Ghana, looks forward to the
period when there will be Ghanaian baseball stars.

"We should not only regard it as a strange game, but who
knows," Morde said. "It could sooner than later become a hard
currency earning opportunity for us."