AwardsBaseballOrigins of the Catching Ranch™


By Eddy Rodriguez

In August ‘17 I was nearing the end of my best defensive season as a catcher in my 12 year professional playing career, but I knew it was time.  The time had come to hang up my cleats and put my playing career behind me. Although I could have continued to grind it out and make a living behind the dish, I knew that my bat was never going to be able to get over the hump I needed to become a solidified major league player.

It was time to search for what was next…..I was done.

Immediately upon my retirement I was blessed to be offered 4-5 different coaching opportunities ranging from MLB to Minors, but, for some reason I was not ready to dive back into professional baseball at the time. I was in a completely different headspace.  Seeing the evolution of where professional baseball was going towards the end of my playing career, my mindset in transition from playing was focused on the potential booming technology market in the amateur space and got started to work at a startup baseball software company with ball tracking devices. 

This tech space was thrilling to me as I learned a side of the game that was growing fast and was an opportunity to learn every day.  But something was missing.

Another opportunity in front of me was traveling around the country doing catching camps.  I loved the idea of being able to pass on my knowledge and experiences as a lifelong catcher to young catchers across the country. Although I loved the idea of developing catchers across the country, there was something about this venture that still did not satisfy my goal of giving the most elite experiences to those I am entrusted to train.  

The training environments were great.  The events were making a difference.  But I wrestled with the question of, how do we continue to develop beyond the couple of days of the event.  Instead of continuing to develop these young catchers, I was hitting the road to the next town.

This was a void that needed to be filled to become truly effective in enhancing the families that entrusted me with their catcher’s careers.  I wrestled with that question for a long time and just could not see myself facilitating development in that manner.

During this time of contemplation my dear friend and mentor, Greg Brown, invited me to help him run the Inaugural Elite Catcher’s Boot Camp (ECBC) at Ron Wolforth’s Texas Baseball Ranch in Montgomery, TX. Brownie, as we affectionately call him, had a deep relationship with Ron and Jill after coaching their son Garrett at Nova Southeastern University in 2019.  Garrett had transferred to play for Brownie, who was the head coach at the time, and blossomed under his tutelage which was highlighted by Garrett winning the 2019 NCAA DII Rawlings Gold Glove as the top defensive catcher in the country.  My experience at The Texas Baseball Ranch was exhilarating.  Everything I was missing in my hellish version of catching barnstorming was here at the ECPC.  The Ranch was an eye opening.  Seeing it firsthand, there is a RIGHT way to run an event for catchers and parents alike.  An ELITE Way.  The Ranch Way.  The forum for growth that’s created at THE RANCH is unparalleled. 

The Ranch gave the catchers and families alike The Disney Experience.

After each night at the ECBC we would spend the nights bouncing ideas off of each other.  Back and forth we would discuss theory, best practices, and dream of expanding this world class catching event.  The synergy between the established brand of the Texas Baseball Ranch and the dream I had of developing elite catchers beyond the traditional format. 

After my experience at The Ranch I realized how much bigger The Ranch was then a showcase or a camp.  It was all culture.  It was something you earned.  It was something you belonged to with pride.  It was a family.

When I returned home I had a new found focus.  I had seen the light and now I was driven to replicate the shared experiences we had at the Inaugural ECPC.  I did return to professional baseball during this time as I was hired as the Catching Coordinator for Angels and after one year I was hired to be the MLB Catching Coach for the Miami Marlins.  My experiences as a player and as a coach led me to be able to combine new methodologies with technology and blend them into the most robust training environment possible.

The results were unreal. Players were improving at a faster rate than ever before under my tutelage. Simultaneously, Brownie and I began discussing the potential of building a platform for developing catchers at an elite level remotely.  We wanted the platform to enhance the live events and continue the coach-player relationship to continue to facilitate their growth.  

The vision was for a one-stop shop for all their defensive needs that go beyond the norms.  We wanted to develop catcher specific strength and conditioning programs, high end drill databases, training tools, mental skills training, video reviews, blogs, and player-coach mentorship.  The goal is simple:  Be the epicenter of ELITE catching development.

The dream was vivid, but not a reality.  

Fortunately, we had amazing mentors in Ron and Jill Wolforth.  Over the years they guided us as to life, business, and family.  They helped cultivate our mindset.  They gave us inspiration to challenge ourselves, to develop our dream, and lead by lifting others up. 

It is with great pride that we announce that we are officially a member of The Ranch family.  We are The Florida Baseball Ranch.  We are the Catching Ranch.  And all of this is because of the faith, love, and guidance of our mentors, Ron and Jill..  

The hard work has just begun, but we have been yearning for this opportunity. A true labor of love to create a place where Catchers have access to everything they need to raise up their game

We will continue to strive and push our limits as instructors, mentors, mentees, and as a family to serve our athletes.  We look forward to growing with you all on this journey. 

Welcome to the new Florida Baseball Ranch!

Yours in Catching—-

Eddy Rodriguez


Florida Baseball Ranch

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