When I lived down in Winter Haven, Florida back in 2007 as the Indians Spring Training Marketing Coordinator, I had the chance to swing by Universal Studios with my girlfriend to enjoy some amusement park fun. We were standing in line for one of the rides, I believe the “Twister” ride–if you want to call it a ride, and there was a woman eating a giant chicken leg!
It was probably the funniest thing I had ever witnessed while people watching. She was just standing in line with the big drumstick, gnawing on it like a lion gnaws on a baby gazelle. Can you picture that? She didn’t care that the sauce from the giant drumstick was smeared all over her face because she was on vacation and she was enjoying herself. Standing next to her in line, I felt like my arteries were getting clogged! To me, that was a whole lot of chicken…
The Cleveland Indians recently partnered with Tyson Foods and Lift Up America for a food drive. Tyson Foods donated over 31,000 pounds of meat (mostly chicken) to help feed local food agencies. With help from The Cleveland Food Bank, 28 food agencies swung by Progressive Field and picked up their portion of meat. Prior to the pick up, a press conference was held on Gateway Plaza to announce the news. Volunteers from the Baldwin-Wallace football team, Cleveland Metro School District as well as Indians outfielder Trevor Crowe, Pitcher Josh Tomlin and 2nd baseman Cord Phelps were on hand to help load the trucks with food.
31,000 pounds…now THAT is a whole lot of chicken!
WHAT IF last Friday night at Progressive Field, the heroics didn’t belong to the Cleveland Indians baseball team? WHAT IF the two out rally wasn’t started by Grady Sizemore or Travis Hafner? WHAT IF this time…this one time, the victories didn’t belong to the Tribe team that everyone is used to and instead belonged to the Cleveland Indians kickball team–made up of members of the Cleveland Indians front office? I’m glad you asked!
The competition was fierce that day, my friends. I’ll tell you the opposing players were 10 feet tall if they were a foot! But that didn’t matter to us. We simply looked at our enemies and smiled, because we knew–we knew we had the Cleveland Indians “bat magic” on our side. We had the likes of Dan “Asdrubal” Badders at short stop making unbelievable defensive plays to help out our pitcher Ashley “Pure Rage” Churchill. We had a core team of veterans named Machado, Walters, Janoso, Frohwerk, Sherman and Polito showing the rookies how its done. And most importantly, we had the “never-give-up/two-out-rally” attitude that has created so many memories for our fans this year on the baseball side of things.
Game 1 and 2 were easy victories for us and got the juices flowing. We knew going into Game 3 we would need great defense and even faster legs. We played smart ball, but still found ourselves down 1-0 early on. We came back to tie it up 1-1 in, what we thought would be our last ups. Time still remained and we were able to get one last at bat and that is where the magic began. In the bottom of the 3rd inning (the last inning), the Indians came back to win it 2-1! The opposing team was not happy thinking that they lost on a technicality. Umpire’s call–we win and we move on.
Game 4 was just as intense. We were again down 1-0 in the 1st inning. No matter what we tried to do, we were going down 1, 2, 3 until the 3rd inning (again). That’s when the rally began. We battled back to tie it up. Then, with two men on and two outs we kicked a solid single. Dan Badders, on second base took off to third and then tried for home to get the win. The ball was thrown and clearly the catcher did not tag our runner. The umpire had a bad angle and didn’t know what to call. She called out and then safe and the complaints piled in. There was no way for her to make it right and, because this was a game for charity, both teams agreed that a re-kick was the most fair option. The rally continued as we ended up scoring to win the game 2-1 and move on to the Championship game versus KeyBank.
I’m not even going to go into details of this game because every fan watching has their own take on how it all went down. That’s how legends are created, and that’s what this battle will go down as–legendary. Some will say we had it in our grasp from the first kick, others will say that KeyBank should have come up with the victory (those people would be wrong). Knowing the game was all for charity, the Cleveland Indians reached deep down into their guts and pulled out the greatest win of all time to became the first back-to-back kickball champions in the world!
The kickball games were played as part of the 2nd Annual “Cleveland Kicks-It”–a charity kickball tournament to raise money for an organization called Kick-It. Kick-It is a national fundraising program that raises money for children’s cancer research through the game of kickball. Cleveland Kicks-It brought local Cleveland businesses together to compete against each other at Progressive Field in a double elimination tournament. Competing teams included the Cleveland Indians, Cleveland Cavs, Rosetta, KeyBank, American Greetings, Clear Channel, Quicken Loans, K&D Group, Kalman + Pabst, West Side Challenge and Fairmount Minerals.
Due to the overwhelming popularity of this blog since I started it a few months ago, I’ve had so many request to drop people’s names in it. A couple of weeks ago, when the Tribe was playing in Los Angeles, my cousin (who lives in LA and was going to the game) asked if I could include his name in it. I had to quickly explain to Marty that this blog is for business purposes only–to promote to the world how the Cleveland Indians are helping the community through volunteer efforts, fundraising, appearances and the like. It is not to be used to plug the DeLaat family name. So I’m sorry, Marty DeLaat, but I will not be allowed to mention your name in this blog per MLB’s rules.
I am suddenly reminded of a crazy cousin of mine who, growing up, used to take the RTA down to then Jacobs Field during Indians games and get a bunch of autographs from the players. Being the business savvy kid that he was, he would then go on and sell a lot of those autographs to help keep his cash flow going. It was a great idea, completely legal, and kept him out of trouble.
Cleveland Indians Charities does a similar version of what my cousin used to do; however, we take a slightly different approach with it. For one, all of the money made from sales goes straight to Cleveland Indians Charities. We also get the items from the Indians Clubhouse, so they are authentic items (most were actually worn/used by the players) and not replicas.
We call these items Clubhouse Collectibles and they are sold in our Progressive Field Team Shop. Not all of the items are autographed, but we sell anything from bats (broken or just used), signed player photos, old player jerseys, signed baseballs, helmets, etc.
So the next time you come to a game, or are in the Cleveland area and are looking for some cool team issued/team used memorabilia, swing into the Team Shop and check out the Clubhouse Collectibles. Or, if my cousin from California is back in town you can just buy something off of him. We’d prefer you go through us, though!
The beginning of June is finally here. After months of dealing with crazy Cleveland weather where it is 90 degrees one day and 40 degrees the next, we are officially free from cold weather for at least a month! Heck, I can’t even remember what a Nimbostratus cloud looks like! To the lay-person, Nimbostratus clouds are low-lying clouds that produce rain, ice and/or snow.
With June also comes the final days of school for many kids. Seniors in high school have their last summer at home to look forward to before opening up the next chapter of their life in college. Seniors in college have their last summer of freedom before they have to get a job and live in the real world–although, the way the job outlook is, they may have a couple of years of freedom before finding a job!
What else does June bring? Well Indians baseball, of course! Yes, I know the Tribe has been playing for two months now, but there are a ton of events coming up that are exciting to learn about! Here is what the Cleveland Indians and their Community Relations department has coming up in June:
June 3: Major League Baseball Player Alumni Association (MLBPAA) auction at the ballpark–auctioning off former and current MLB player memorabilia (Pete Rose autograph baseball, Nolan Ryan autograph photo, etc.)
June 5: Signature Sunday for first 100 High Achievers who check in during KeyBank Kids Fun Days
June 8: Fill the House for Charity benefiting Berea Children’s Home. Portions of ticket sales from the June 8 game will go directly to Berea Children’s Home!
June 17: Indians in the Community event: Members of the Indians front office and some players will help serve lunch at La Sagrad Church.
June 18: MLB Pitch, Hit and Run competition at Progressive Field. Local Pitch, Hit and Run winners square off to decide who will be the champion and move on to the Finals held at the 2011 All-Star Game in Arizona!
June 19: Cleveland Indians Charities “Play Catch” fundraiser. Fans can buy tickets to “Play Catch” on the field with their dad after the game. All proceeds go to Cleveland Indians Charities.
June 21: PLAY Clinic. 40 local youth are invited down to Progressive Field to participate in the clinic. The clinic is put on by the Cleveland Indians trainers.
June 22: Fill the House for Charity benefiting Special Olympics. Portions of ticket sales from the June 22 game go directly to Special Olympics!
They say that newspapers are a dying breed. I don’t know who “they” are, but they are probably the people who are no longer subscribing to newspapers. When I asked the morning newspaper what it’s thoughts were on this, it just sat there on my doorstep without a response. We’ll just mark that down as a “no comment.”
Yesterday, the Cleveland Indians and The Plain Dealer partnered together to put on the annual Tribe Reporter for a Day event here at Progressive Field. This event has been an annual thing since Chris Perez last had short hair. The purpose of Tribe Reporter for a Day is to give high school students the chance to be, well, to be a reporter for the Tribe for a day. We are very creative with our event names.
High School students were asked to submit essays to The Plain Dealer telling why they are interested in sports writing and how taking part in this event would further their future career plans. Out of about 200 essays, the top 25 were chosen and those kids were brought to Progressive Field on May 10, 2011. The day began with them sitting in on an actual press conference with Manny Acta and the local media. After the press conference, Plain Dealer sports writer, Paul Hoynes, spoke with the young reporters. He gave them some insight on his world as well as some tips on how to make it in the business. After a few questions/answers, they were taken to the stands to watch the Indians take some batting practice. During this time, they were looking through their media guides and getting some notes/questions together for their own press conference with some of the players.
Shortly after batting practice, the reporters were brought to the Press Interview Room under the ballpark where they had the opportunity to interview Chris Perez, Adam Everett and Vinnie Pestano. The players seemed to enjoy the questions, which I should add were pretty intense questions at times. The session ended with a group photo and will be followed by stories from each reporter of their experience during the event.
Special thanks to The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Chris Perez, Adam Everett, and Vinnie Pestano for making this another successful event.
I’ve been thinking about getting a dog lately and if I do decide to go through with it, I would probably adopt one from a shelter or something along those lines. I don’t really care what type of dog I get, but to be able to “save” one would mean more to me than buying one from a breeder or the next door neighbor whose Poodle just had a litter and a half.
The problem I face is that, if I get a dog, I would have to keep it at my girlfriend’s house because I don’t have room for one. She isn’t too excited about the idea and has turned me down numerous times when I’ve asked her about it. I always thought that if I propose to her it would be fun to adopt a dog , put the engagement ring on his paw, and have him walk in her house with it on. I could then yell, “Surprise!” That way, if she told me I had to give the dog back I could say that the ring and the dog are a package deal–take it or leave, toots. Plus, in the future if she was ever upset with me over something else, I can say, “remember when I proposed to you by adopting a dog?” She would reflect back and think it was such a cute idea (this would be years down the line) that she would no longer be upset with me.
Either way, I still want to adopt a dog and what better place to find out more about adopting animals than through the Cleveland APL?! This Wednesday, April 27 is our Fill the House for the Cleveland APL night at Progressive Field. If you are interested in learning more about adopting an animal, they will have a table set up in the concourse behind section 155.
As a reminder, the Cleveland APL will get $1.00 for every paid ticket at the game (so if 15,000 people buy tickets, they will get a check for $15,000). So come out to watch the 1st Place Cleveland Indians take on the (tied for)2nd place Kansas City Royals and make the money you spend on a ticket count! The Cleveland Animal Protective League’s mission is to foster compassion and end animal suffering through adoption, human investigations, spay and neuter, and education.
I’ve always considered myself a “glass half full” kind of guy when it comes to just about everything thrown at me in life. The rare exceptions are 1.) when I run out of gas and 2.) when I finish a glass of water.
This Wednesday night, April 6, Indians fans can’t be “glass half full” fans. They have to be “glass overflowing” fans. In a very roundabout and confusing way, I’m trying to tell you to come to the game so that we can Fill the House (the house in this case being Progressive Field) because the more people who come to the game–the more money gets donated to the Diabetes Association of Greater Cleveland. For every paid ticket, the Cleveland Indians will donate $1.00 to the Diabetes Association.
I know what you are thinking, “$1.00? That’s it?” Picture a paid attendance of 43,000 and $1.00 for each paid ticket going to the Diabetes association. That’s a check for $43,000! Let me say that again, that’s a check for $43,000! Are you seeing how I am a “glass half full” kind of guy yet? So let’s get out there and buy a ticket to tomorrow night’s game and help support this great organization!
For 13 Wednesdays throughout the 2011 season the Cleveland Indians will team up with a Northeast Ohio non-profit organization to provide much-needed funds and the opportunity to raise awareness for their specific cause. Launched in 2009, this program has raised more than $1,100,000 in monetary and in-kind donations for 13 Northeast Ohio non-profits.
The Indians will donate $5 from each ticket sold by the participating non-profit organization back to the charity. Also, $1 from every overall ticket sale for Wednesday games during the 2011 baseball season will be donated to the designated charity.
The Diabetes Association of Greater Cleveland’s mission is to ensure that Greater Clevelanders affected by diabetes have the support they need to live well with the disease.
Day 2 of Cleveland Indians Fantasy Camp is here. Today’s high temperature is supposed to be 79 degrees. The high temperature in Cleveland at Progressive Field, a sweltering 15 degrees and snow.
We’ll keep today’s entry short, only because I don’t have a lot of time today.
Last night at our “end of the night” meeting we paid a special tribute to Mr. Bob Feller. A tribute video was shown following Bob’s life in the majors up until his last year at Fantasy Camp (January 2010). All of the campers received special t-shirts for the occassion and a few other personal moments and tributes were shared. I won’t discuss those, because those are the types of things that need to only be known to the campers and staff here. It was a very nice night and I think Mr. Feller would have enjoyed it. Actually, he probably would have been upset that all the commotion was for him when we could have been spending our time playing baseball.
As promised, I have the Pros’ names and the teams that they are managing for the week. The games are going on as I type this.
Team #1: The Big Saguaros are managed by “Super” Joe Charboneau and Rick Manning
Team #2: The Killer B’s are managed by Scott Bailes and Lenny Barker
Team #3: The Rhomburba’s are managed by Dave Burba and Kevin Rhomberg
Team #4: Azcue’s Miscues are managed by Joe Azcue and Rick Waits
Team #5: The Swindlers are managed by Mike “Grover” Hargrove and Greg “Zeke” Swindell
Team #6: The Rapid CD’s are managed by Dave Nelson and Chad Ogea
Team #7: B.A.T.S are managed by Brian Anderson and Pat Tabler
Team #8: Feller’s Fans are managed by Max Alvis and Cory Snyder
The Camp’s Overseers/Judges/Jokers are Gary Bell and Jim “Mudcat” Grant
So those are your Pros, ladies and gentlemen. In addition to the former players being team managers, they will also play the campers at the end of the week in the Pros vs. Campers game. I’ll try and get a picture or two of that catastrophe when I can!