Clovis News

Word on the Street: Baseball training center

A new 15,000-square-foot indoor baseball and softball training center opens at 10 a.m. Saturday in Clovis.

TNL Diamond Academy -- TNL stands for "the next level" -- is at 788 Sierra Ave., near Clovis Avenue. It features 11 batting cages and eight bullpens for practicing pitching.

In November, a video analysis machine will be added to help pitchers and hitters train their eyes to respond quicker to the ball.

Longtime area youth softball coach Gerry Gresham and his wife Sherri have partnered with their daughter and son-in-law to open the business.

Lexi Gresham Davisson is a former softball pitcher for Clovis West High School who also played for the University of Central Florida. She is married to Corey Davisson, a Bakersfield native and pitcher who spent a season in the Arizona Diamondbacks minor-league system.

They will act as instructors, in addition to several other current and former professional baseball players, including Jameson Smith and Mike Colla.

Walk-ins are welcome, but the center operates on a membership basis with appointments for instruction. Individual memberships cost $50 and family memberships are $75.

More details are available on the business's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/tnldiamondacademy.

It joins other businesses with hitting and pitching practice areas, including Fresno World of Baseball (founded in 1999) on Fresno Street just north of Shaw Avenue and the nonprofit Central Cal Baseball Academy.

A sporting start

Big 5 Sporting Goods will open a new store this week in Coalinga, moving into part of a former Save Mart grocery store site at the corner of Polk Street and Highway 198.

Signs on the building announce that the store will open Tuesday, and the Coalinga Chamber of Commerce will hold a ribbon-cutting on Wednesday, said Alyssa Gowitt, the chamber's office assistant.

Big 5 will become the only full-line sporting goods store in Coalinga, although the nearby Kmart store also carries a selection of sports supplies, Gowitt said.

"Up until now, everybody's had to go to Hanford or Fresno for sporting goods," she said.

The store will hold a grand opening Sept. 8 with a sale, contests and prize drawings.

El Segundo-based Big 5 was founded in 1955 and operates nearly 400 stores in 12 Western states. The Coalinga store will be the chain's 203rd in California.

Nurture via nature

Vitamin store Nature's Nutrients is the newest store at the Pavilion West Shopping Center at Bullard and West avenues in Fresno.

The store was scheduled to open Saturday.

It sells vitamins, digestion aids, herbal supplements, immunity boosters and other products. The store will offer health-related classes, too.

Owner Liz Herzog is the former owner of B-Alive Vitamins at Cedar and Herndon avenues.

Nature's Nutrients joins other stores selling vitamins in the area, including Kristina's Natural Ranch Market, Tower Health & Diet Foods and Ounce of Prevention Nutrition Shoppe.

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