Tevlins partner with Johnston, The Baseball Zone
By Matt Betts
Canadian Baseball Network
Baseball and two bite brownies do not exactly go hand in hand but it was certainly something that intrigued The Baseball Zone part owner Rick Johnston.
Ok, so maybe Johnston didn’t have two bite brownies on his mind when he was looking for someone to take over and own the 50% of the Mississauga based facility. What he did have in mind though was bringing in a partner or partners with a strong business background. That is where Mike and Nicole Tevlin come in, the creator of the two bite brownie. When former part owner Mike McCarthy was looking to make a change for personal reasons, Johnston was on the hunt for new owners.
“It started out as a casual conversation (between Johnston and the Tevlins) and then it turned more into a business conversation,” Johnston said. “Mike McCarthy wanted to get out for personal reasons and saw a good opportunity to do so with the Tevlin’s coming in. He was never going to just leave me out in the cold.”
The Tevlin’s are no strangers to The Baseball Zone as their boys have both been involved in the Terriers baseball program and frequent the indoor facility. Luke Tevlin (Toronto, Ont.) is currently attending the University of Binghamton on a baseball scholarship and their other son Joe Tevlin (Toronto, Ont.) is headed to Niagara University to do the same.
“We never intended to be involved in the facility,” Mike Tevlin explained. “The more involved our boys got, so did we. When we caught wind that the business may potentially be sold, we thought we could help out. Nicole and I have a lot of experience selling quality products.”
Johnston points out that with a change in ownership there is always a feeling out process as far as what both sides want to do. Knowing that, the Tevlin’s like what Johnston and McCarthy have built and the tradition they have going.
“We loved the way they did things,” Nicole Tevlin said. “Being parents we got to see some of the challenges they went through and now we have the opportunity to try and help them out.”
Mike Tevlin could not be happier with Johnston, The Baseball Zone and the Terrier program.
“They care about the kids as kids,” he said. “They care about a lot more than just baseball results. The staff sets the facility apart, they bring out the joy in the game as well. Whether a kid has a baseball career ahead or not, Rick holds the kids accountable. Nobody is better than anyone else”
Mike and Nicole Tevlin are not just good business people, they are also sports people. Nicole, born in Hong Kong, played organized sports growing up. She suited up in a women’s rugby match against France while at Loughborough University in Leicestershire, England and was a member of Great Britain’s first women’s national rugby team.
The Tevlin’s are also big tennis players/fans. They are still heavily involved with Tennis Canada. Both their children played tennis growing up so Mike and Nicole decided to try and get involved with and they have been doing charitable events ever since. They even open their homes to players who come to Toronto for tournaments and training.
Mike grew up playing baseball and Luke began playing. As in most cases, Joe wanted to follow in his brothers footsteps and they took it from their.
Joining Rick, Mike and Nicole will also be Steve Dunlop. He will help with the day-to-day business side of both The Baseball Zone and the Terriers program.
So what kind of ideas do the Tevlin’s have floating around to enhance The Baseball Zone now that they are the proud new part owners?
“We think a strong social media presence is important,” Mike and Nicole said. “Advertising could also be beneficial.”
Johnston doesn’t want to give too much away but wants people to realize what he and the Tevlin’s are going to try and continue to build.
“This is a plan and partnership for the long term,” Johnston said. “It is a wonderful thing. I had a great partner in Mike but things happen for a reason. We have brought three wonderful people on board. We want to continue to go out and spread the word and make The Baseball Zone a hot commodity. The success we have had has done a lot of good. As for the Terriers, we offer a great program where academics are first and the baseball is secondary. We want to teach the kids life skills through our program.”
Continued success is certainly on the horizon ... at least two bites worth.