MILWAUKEE/WAUKESHA (WITI) -- We're still months away from winter's end -- so it's hard for some to think about baseball. But that's starting to change as America's pastime becomes a year-round sport in Wisconsin.
"I've seen a lot of kids as they're walking in today saying t'his is really neat. This is really cool,'" Shawn Kramlich said.
When winter is in full swing, baseball players in southeastern Wisconsin haven't always had a place to take their swings.
"For the youth, third-grade to eighth-grade kids, there's really no place to go in the winter," Kramlich said.
But that's beginning to change. Kramlich has partnered with Milwaukee Brewers Third-Base Coach Ed Sedar to open the Ed Sedar Baseball Academy.
"I was fortunate enough to get to know Eddie many years ago, and we just started doing a little bit here and there with day camps. It just kind of grew and evolved into what we have here today," Kramlich said.
"People are always asking when we do the summer camps can we, do you guys want to do something in the winter? I would go 'I don't have any facility or any way to do stuff in the winter.' So this is kind of like giving back," Sedar said.
"We offer hitting classes, pitching classes, fielding, catching. We have speed and agility and strength training," Kramlich said.
"If something's being done wrong, we're going to stop and correct it. We have small classes so we get a lot of one-on-one, you know, instruction," Sedar said.
The Ed Sedar Baseball Academy is located in Waukesha. In Milwaukee, there's the Milwaukee Baseball Academy.
"We have six months, at least, of winter here every single year and people need a place to go," David Casey said.
Casey is the owner of the Milwaukee Baseball Academy, and along with the pitching, hitting and catching classes, he offers something unique to the area.
"We also have just implemented our new simulation system here. Milwaukee Baseball Academy simulation system. It's different. It works a lot like a golf simulator. But when you hit the ball it gives you, the data's stored in the system," Casey said.
Nicolet High School baseball player Daniel Schiff has been able to take advantage of the academy's simulator and classes and he says he can't wait for spring to see where it has taken him.
"Indoor facilities help improve the mindset of the game because the game is more of a mindset than physical. But it helps me prepare for the season more than not playing all winter," Schiff said.
"I've never seen kids so drawn to coming in and swinging in an off-season. I've never seen kids so drawn to wanting to get better. This system makes them want to hit more. It makes them want to get better," Casey said.
Getting better is the reason players are hitting, pitching and catching all year round -- even with the winter weather.
"Just the idea that you can have baseball 365 now in Wisconsin is great. You can come indoors and work on your game and you know, work on pitching and hitting or fielding and all that with good quality instructors. And then you're ready for the next season when spring rolls around," Kramlich said.
CLICK HERE to learn more about the Ed Sedar Baseball Academy.
CLICK HERE to learn more about the Milwaukee Baseball Academy.