As one of the most promising up-and-coming baseball players in Victoria, Genevieve Beacom is making a name for herself on the diamond.
She may only be 13 years old, but Genevieve has already made her way to state, national and even international competitions. Most recently, she became the first ever female representative selected to attend the Australian MLB Invitational, a coveted invitation and a testament to her undeniable pitching prowess. At this year’s event in Lismore, NSW, she joined 63 other talented baseball players from around the country for a week of highly competitive games under the eyes of both local and international coaches.
There, like always, Genevieve stood out from the crowd, and for good reason. Not only does she conduct herself with great professionalism on and off the field, but her accuracy and command are commendable. She says having such an opportunity, made possible through Baseball Victoria’s Development Pathway, was amazing, especially considering the rigorous training and level of competition at the Invitational. “The training was really good, and I felt like my arm got a lot stronger up there,” Genevieve said. She made herself at home and fit right in with her teammates. “I generally don’t have a problem playing with guys ever, because I always have. Most of them respect my talent and don’t really factor in that I am a girl.”
The Somerville standout pitched in two games for Team Nilsson, which finished 3rd after an exciting week of six games. She was also introduced to innovative technology, including hitting cameras that tracked bat speed and pitching cameras for arm speed. It’s not everyday that junior players like Genevieve get such access to professional tools like that, and she’s thankful for such an opportunity, especially for a young woman who is pushing for a level playing field for all. “It’s pretty amazing to be the first girl at the invitational. I feel happy that they are including girls and looking at girls and picking them,” she said. “It makes me feel proud of myself, knowing that if I did well up there they might consider other girls.”
This wasn’t Genevieve’s first time making headlines, as in September 2017 she became the first girl to play for Australia in the Carl Ripken World Series in Branson, Missouri. In fact, she was the first girl to take the mound as a starting pitcher in the tournament’s history, throwing the first four innings in Australia’s game vs. Canada. Despite the intense pressure, limelight and even TV interviews, Genevieve kept her calm composure and focused on what she loves the most: playing the game.
Genevieve, who plays first base and pitches for Dingley Baseball Club in the Dandenong Baseball Association, first picked up her bat and ball at the age of five after watching her big brother play. Now, the siblings share an obvious passion for the sport, and her brother, Sam Trend-Beacom, brings back all the tips and tricks he’s learned throughout his college baseball career and back-to-back championship titles in the U.S. to help Genevieve improve her skills. She credits her brother’s success with inspiring her. “There’s such a good pathway to keep going and play in America. My brother is my role model and I strive to be like him because he always puts in 100%.”
Since her T-Ball and rookie ball days, Genevieve has gotten a lot better both on the mound and in the batter’s box. She’s received guidance and support from local baseball legends, including Al Tanner from Cheltenham Baseball Club, who recognised her talent and worked patiently with her to develop her abilities and boost her confidence. “For me, I like having a good friendship with a coach. I find that if I can talk to them and feel comfortable, I get a lot more out of it.”
Having fantastic coaches by her side in the Aces Baseball Academy, Mariners Charter and Victorian Mavericks Women’s Academy in Japan has greatly benefitted Genevieve on her path to her baseball dreams. She says Baseball Victoria’s High-Performance Manager It makes me want to try harder than them and it gives me more of a drive to play.”
Having traveled across the world in pursuit of the sport she loves at a young age, it’s safe to say Genevieve is looking ahead to a promising future. While playing in front of a big crowd may seem daunting to other players, Genevieve takes it all in stride. “When I get to national tournaments, like in the grand final, I get a bit nervous but then I settle into the innings and I’m fine.”
This impressive approach was on full display at the Australian Women’s Championships earlier this year, where she led the Victorian Youth Women’s team to a gold medal finish with a stunning start, striking out 17 and giving up one hit and no runs. Even with all this success, she’s still a very humble teen who wants to open doors for more female players. “I think in general there needs to be a lot more womens pathways and more traveling teams.” She is a proud supporter of pushing more development programs for young girls and showing them baseball is for all genders, not just boys. Genevieve herself has felt the pressure to be the best in order to be selected, but she says her Victorian coaches have made her feel like a valuable member of any and every team.
As she continues to challenge herself with a dedicated training and exercise routine, she keeps her eyes on the prize. While she loves staying active, and has played basketball on and off in addition to swimming and horseback riding, her heart belongs to baseball. She tries to strike a balance between her schoolwork at Flinders Christian College, her friendships and baseball, but she’s always looking for more time to practice and prepare for her sport. Her teachers, family and friends are supportive of her busy schedule, and love watching her succeed. At home on the Mornington Peninsula, she has plays catch every night and focuses on her velocity and accuracy, in addition to training several times a week at Aces Academy or her local club.
Genevieve’s drive to succeed is obvious to all those who know her, and she looks up to several notable women in sports, including the hardworking and helpful women from Springvale Baseball Club and Moana Hope from the women’s AFL. “She’s a good role model for me because she’s always putting in work,” Genevieve said.
She has her hopes set high, and won’t let anything get in her way. During the odd times she’s tired or discouraged, she finds herself thinking about the future and how thankful she would be that she kept playing. “I just want to find out what baseball brings me. It’s already brought me a lot of Victorian and national teams, and I’d love to see if it will lead me to college or playing professionally in Japan.”
Genevieve’s proud father, Brendon Beacom, says having coaches like Dean Marnell and Grant Irving look after her has been a great feeling. “It’s a big thing when you go to a tournament and you’re the only girl on the side,” Brendon said. “They look after her and really care about her best interests.”