Here’s a classic Dusty Baker statement, as reported by the Washington Post yesterday:
More scenes from around baseball: http://m.mlb.com/news/article/183689876/baseball-community-saddened-by-orlando-tragedy
Just a few more MLB and MiLB tweets and Instagram posts honoring Muhammad Ali…
The Kansas City Royals and the Baltimore Orioles got into a fight on Tuesday. Of course, many folks have offered their two-cents on the topic. For example, the Sporting News stated Manny Machado was wrong for charging the mound while the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has tired of Yordano Ventura’s antics. ESPN noted that this can be a positive turning point for the Orioles, and NBC Sports just mused that it was all in tribute to Muhammad Ali (though see my take on that below). Adam Jones, of course, felt Machado was more than justified in his actions.
Meanwhile, the Chicago Cubs’ Joe Maddon and Anthony Rizzo apparently loved the whole thing.
I’ll let you judge for yourself (just don’t let that little skip of Manny’s as he heads to the pitcher’s mound cloud your opinion):
I was watching the game, but I’ll decline to take sides (Manny Machado doll on my dresser notwithstanding). Actually, I think they both should be ashamed of themselves. After all, the photographic evidence is quite telling – clearly neither Machado nor Ventura know how to fight. The still photos of their punches clearly show them each missing the mark:
Jet Blue as the official sponsor of David Ortiz’ retirement? Regardless of whether it makes sense, this is great both in English and Spanish! I especially like the cupcake swipe at around 0:18…
Muhammad Ali passed away on Friday, June 3, 2016, at the age of 74. The sports world and many others took the time to honor his memory and thank him for his contributions. The outpouring of support from the baseball world was impressive. Below are just of the baseball-related tweets and Instagram posts about the passing of “the Greatest of All Time.” More to come later this week…
June is a month for many things – including: Caribbean-American Heritage Month, African American Music Appreciation Month, National Oceans Month, and Great Outdoors Month. June also is recognized as LGBT Pride Month, with many cities hosting parades and other celebrations. MLB is slowly jumping on the bandwagon. In fact, both the Red Sox and the Dodgers are hosting Pride Night tonight.
The Washington Nationals have been advertising their June 14 “Night OUT” event on their scoreboard during games. However, it may not always be easy to determine which teams are hosting LGBT events. Occasionally pride nights are listed under “Promotions and Giveaways” on team websites, but more often you have to search for them under “Tickets” as group tickets, special events, or theme nights. In a few cases, no mention is made on the team website, but on the website of a sponsoring organization. In all cases, any promotional giveaway is obtained only through the purchase of a special ticket.
Nonetheless, more teams are recognizing this important component of their fan base. For example, this year, the Mets will be the first major New York sports team to host an LGBT event. The Phillies, too, are sponsoring their inaugural Pride Night. While similar events were held at both teams’ stadiums last year, they were not sponsored directly by the team like they are this year. In addition, earlier this year MLB announced a new partnership with the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, which would provide opportunities for LGBT businesses to bid for MLB contracts and other opportunities.
Both this year and last year, there have been issues and controversies surrounding LGBT events at MLB ballparks and not all teams have sought out the LGBT fan base. However, below is the list of 2016 events that I was able to find by searching team websites and other internet sites:
|Date||Team||Event||Ticket Info and Sponsors|
|May 21||Padres||Pride Night||The first 2,500 fans to purchase special ticket package received a limited edition Padres Pride Night Rally Towel. Tickets available at three price levels, one of which includes a pregame buffet. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to San Diego Pride.|
|June 3||Red Sox||Pride Night||Special ticket package includes Red Sox Pride Flag; VIP package includes pregame meet and greet with Billy Bean; proceeds to benefit Boston Pride.|
|June 3||Dodgers||LGBT Night||Special ticket package includes exclusive Dodgers LGBT Night t-shirt.|
|June 7||Tigers||Pride Night Detroit||Special tickets had to be purchased through chamber website (deadline was 5/31). Sponsored by the Regional LGBT Chamber of Commerce.|
|June 10||Braves||LGBT Night||Special ticket package includes pregame patio event with live music from the Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus, a special Braves hat, and $5 donation to Lost-n-Found Youth.|
|June 14||A’s||Pride Night||Special ticket package includes Oakland A’s Pride rainbow headband and pregame party. Partial proceeds benefit local LGBT non-profits: AIDS Project East Bay, Our Space, and Rainbow Community Center. Sponsored by Wells Fargo.|
|June 14||Nationals||Night Out||$7 of each ticket purchased through special events ticket page will benefit Team DC’s scholarship fund.|
|June 17||Rays||Pride Night||Special ticket package includes t-shirt.|
|June 24||Giants||LGBT Night||Special ticket package includes access to the LGBT Night pregame party in Seals Plaza and a limited-edition LGBT/Giants trucker hat. Partial proceeds from each special event ticket will be donated to local non-profits in the LGBT community. Community Partners: Team SF, Federation of Gay Games, San Francisco Lesbian/Gay Freedom Band, San Francisco Pride, and Horizons Foundation|
|July 9||White Sox||Out at the Sox||Tickets must be purchased through Equality Illinois, a higher ticket package rate includes pregame events. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the event sponsor Equality Illinois.|
|Aug 13||Mets||Pride Night||A portion of each ticket sold through the special offer will benefit the LGBT Network and its Safe Schools Initiative to stop bullying in Long Island and Queens.|
|Aug 19||Mariners||LGBT Night||Special ticket package includes t-shirt and pregame event (with light food and beverage). Sponsored by the Greater Seattle Business Association.|
|Aug 29||Phillies||Pride Night||First 500 people to purchase tickets through the promotion will receive a limited edition Phillies Pride-themed giveaway.|
As you prepare for Memorial Day weekend and summer travel, keep in mind this great scene that happened at Dodger Stadium on Monday:
In February, Emirates airlines entered into a partnership with the Los Angeles Dodgers and signed an agreement to be the “official airline sponsor” of the Dodgers. The airline also put its name on a club level lounge at the ballpark and the Dodgers put their name on a Dubai Little League team. The Dodgers also announced that they plan to send Adrian Gonzalez and other Dodgers personnel to visit the Emirates’ headquarters in Dubai and conduct a baseball clinic for local Little League teams. During the February press conference to announce this partnership, Peter Gruber, a member of the Dodgers’ ownership team, stated:
“The Dodgers provide emotional transportation for [their] audience, [their] fans, and of course Emirates provides physical transportation. The idea of this combination is one that is born because great brands like to associate with great brands.”
Emirates will begin a second daily flight between Dubai and Los Angeles beginning July 1st. Hence, their recent on-field promotion.
Today at the White House, First Lady Michelle Obama will be treated to a talent show featuring students and mentors from the Turnaround Arts program. Among others, the program will feature recent music school graduate and former New York Yankees star, Bernie Williams.
Turnaround Arts is a program of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities. The purpose of the program is to transform struggling schools “through the strategic use of the arts.” According to the program’s website, “Turnaround Arts brings arts education programs and supplies to a group of the lowest-performing elementary and middle schools in the country. These resources help schools improve attendance, parent engagement, student motivation, and academic achievement.”
Now that he’s a college graduate, Bernie will be serving as an ambassador for the Turnaround Arts program and will be working with Jettie S. Tisdale School in Bridgeport, CT. In conjunction with his visit to the White House, he will be visiting members of Congress to discuss the Turnabout Program.
This may not necessarily be a case of where baseball and politics work together, but it is definitely a case of a baseball player sharing his other passion – music – for the good of the community.