Oli Marmol launches an application to help budding athletes

ST. LOUIS — Oli Marmol’s first year in charge of the St. Louis Cardinals is also the first year of a new initiative aimed at helping budding athletes.

Marmol and his wife Amber participated in the launch of a sports education app known as Versus in March, which aims to connect with children who otherwise might not have access to such information.

The app features exclusive video content that offers mentorship and lessons from professional baseball and softball athletes. Some of the stars offering lessons include Albert Pujols, Adam Wainwright, Fernando Tatis Jr., Jennie Finch and Jessica Mendoza.

Instructions for football and other sports could be released later this year, according to a Press release from Versus. Versus, which Marmol says had been in the works for eight years before its release, is a subscription-based platform.

Marmol hopes athletes who learn from the app not only gain a better understanding of the physical and mental aspect of sport, but also learn lessons that can help them succeed in life beyond sport. He says Forbes in a recent interview that a missionary trip to Guatemala helped him realize the need for such a program, especially for poor areas.

“In my own professional career, being able to ask my mentors follow-up questions has opened so many doors for me, and we hope to do the same for the next generation of athletes,” Marmol said via the press release.

Versus offers three different pricing tiers, including a free trial that starts with one session and 10 questions per month. There are also annual plans at $199 and $299 that offer better access to education. Versus plans to donate 10% of its revenue to charities that help underserved youth in the United States.

Marmol is more than three-quarters into his first full MLB season with the Cardinals, who lead the NL Central by six games behind a 72-54 record.

Lance B. Holton