Blake Thomas has spent most of his summer on the diamond.
The Winchester native will get the opportunity for a mini-vacation next week, combined with more summer baseball games when he travels overseas beginning Friday.
Thomas, is one of 17 players who will compete on a select team in the Dominican Republic, led by Indiana University coach Tracy Smith.¿
While on the Caribbean island, Thomas and the rest of his teammates will compete against other teams and distribute baseball equipment and other sporting goods to less fortunate children in the nation.
Thomas was the only player in Kentucky invited to take part in the seven-day trip.
“It’s a goodwill mission,” Blake’s father Danny said earlier this week. “They’re going to take clothes, balls, bats to the underprivileged children in the Dominican Republic.
“Coach Smith told me that (Blake’s) life will never be the same (after he visits).”
Thomas, also a member of the Kentucky Baseball Club Blue, a prestigious 16-and-under traveling team based in Lexington and is teammates with several top prospects, including University of Kentucky commit Javon Shelby, son of former Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder John “T-Bone” Shelby. Thomas played at Montgomery County last season and will be a junior this fall and also played in the Winchester Little League.
Blake also attended Shearer Elementary.
The Kentucky Club Blue is managed by Kevin Clary and Blake is the team’s starting second baseman.
Kentucky Blue won a national tournament hosted by the University of Louisville at Louisville Slugger Field last weekend and has been successful throughout the summer.
“Every player on the team is a college prospect,” Blake’s father Danny Thomas said. “They’ve won every tournament they’ve played in (this summer).”
Despite the abundance of talent, the team isn’t stocked with egos.
“Everybody likes each other,” Blake said. “We have good team chemistry and we have amazing pitching. We just play hard and we play smart.”
“The team is unbelievable,” Danny added. “The team has more talent than any team I’ve ever seen. It’s like an all-star team.”
Danny, a retired detective with the Winchester Police Department, is currently the school resource officer at George Rogers Clark High School. Thomas also is looking forward to the trip.
I’m sure it’s going to change my life too,” Thomas said.