Tuesday, June 25, 2013

A Champion on and off the Field

Last fall I got an email from Emil Coccaro who is the clubhouse manager for the Long Island Ducks. He introduced himself and told me that he had found my site. We have a couple of things in common... our love for baseball, and alopecia areata.  Emil told me how he had alopecia as a boy and that he loved what I was doing and wanted to help.  We met at a Barnstormers game last September and he said he would get something for us.  The Ducks seem to always draw big names and former MLB players and this season is no different During the off season we stayed in touch and he was going to be in Lancaster again June 15.  We had planned to meet early and get some of the things he has collected for us but those plans changed do to an emergency.  My dad and Gavin were able to meet up with him after the ball game and talk to him for a while.  So here is what we got...
Official Atlantic League baseballs signed by:  Dontrelle Willis, Bill Hall, Ian Snell, Timo Perez, Former Met Bud Harrelson, and another ball for each of us.  This one hurt a little but was still cool to have...we each got a game used ball from the 2012 Ducks game 5 championship...against the Barnstormers!  Emil also made a donation to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation in the amount of $100 through Autographs 4 Alopecia!

Emil with the 2012 Championship trophy

We are planning on making the trip to Long Island this summer and catch a game on his turf.  Thanks Emil for the balls, letter, and donation!  Can't wait to catch up!

Dontrelle Willis, Bill Hall, Timo Perez, Game ball,
Bud Harrelson, Ian Snell

Today's Autographs:  7
2013 Autographs: 142
2013 My donation: $7.10

Other Donation: $100.00

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Sugar Land Skeeters

The past couple of seasons we wrote letters to different minor league and independent baseball teams.  2012 was the first season for the Sugar Land Skeeters and we love watching them when they come to Lancaster or York to play.  Last season they made national news when they signed Roger Clemens to play with them. This season they also have one of our all time favorite players, Adam Godwin.  When the Skeeters were in Lancaster over Memorial Day weekend, Adam came out and played catch with us on the field for a while.  They are well on their way to making the playoffs in just their 2nd year!

They recently sent us a package that included a few programs, schedules, and stickers.  We are looking forward to seeing them again and getting the programs and schedules signed.  Thank you Skeeters for your help!

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Sandlot 20th Anniversary

Our favorite baseball movie is The Sandlot.  My favorite part is when the kids from the Sandlot were playing the other team that was really good.  Gavin's favorite part is when Squints was pretending to drown and the lifeguard had to save him and he kissed her.

This summer they are celebrating their 20th anniversary and doing a tour visiting different minor and major league ballparks.  When we checked the schedule they weren't going to be anywhere near Lancaster but we did manage to get a nice package in the mail. 

David Evans is the Director and Writer for The Sandlot and sent us a signed 20th Anniversary DVD, a Sandlot card set, and a signed photo for each of us.  He also sent a signed DVD and some signed photos for our silent auction.

Thanks Mr. Evans!  If you haven't seen The Sandlot, you are missing out!

Today's Autographs:  8
2013 Autographs: 135
2013 My donation: $6.75

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Games 8 & 9: Let's Play 2! Reading Fightins and Harrisburg Senators

Bonus baseball!  My Uncle Joe had tickets to the Reading Fightin Phils for Saturday night against the Harrisburg Senators but with all the rain we had on Friday it ended up being a double header.  The best part was the pitching.  Jesse Biddle is the Phillies #1 prospect and he would be starting game 1.  Carlos Zambrano signed a minor league deal with the Phillies and would be making the start in game 2.  We got there early and were hoping to get Zambrano but didn't know if he would even come out before game 2.  He came out before game 1 and signed autographs and was really nice to the fans. 

Carlos Zambrano

Zambrano signing my card
We did pretty well on Fightin Phils autographs and wanted to get some Senators before game 2.  We went down and got several Senators cards signed.  We got to get Jimmy Van Ostrand who played for the Sugar Land Skeeters last year before getting signed by the Senators.  He also played for Canada in the World Baseball Classic in March.  Last season he emailed me and liked what I was doing with my autograph project. He was really nice and signed a card and took a picture with me on his way out for game 2.  He then greeted Carlos Zambrano with a solo HR!  We also got to see former Barnstormer Matt Lecroy who is now in his 2nd season managing the Senators. 

Blake with Jimmy Van Ostrand

Senators Manager and former Barnstormer Matt Lecroy

Gavin and Screwball

As for the baseball, it was a great night to be a pitcher as the Senators won game 1, 1-0 and the Fightin Phils won game 2, 2-1. 

Anthony Hewitt

Today's Autographs:  17
2013 Autographs: 127
2013 My donation: $6.35

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Game 7: Gone Fishin!

If you've followed our site for the past few years, probably the Bridgeport Bluefish have gotten the 2nd most coverage to our hometown Lancaster Barnstormers.  Bridgeport has always been our "other" team in the Atlantic League mostly because of Luis Lopez and Adam Greenberg.  They were in town this weekend and dad and Gavin were going over Saturday night.  Gavin was  really excited to get to see Luis again and was even sporting his all star shirt from 2011!  They got there early and Gavin had his Bluefish cards out to sign.  Adam Greenberg is on the DL and didn't make the trip but we did have other Bluefish cards to get signed. 

Gavin with Luis Lopez

2011 All Star shirt

Gavin got to talk to Luis for a while and fill him in on our seasons and hear about how the Bluefish were doing too.  One of our other favorite former Barnstormers, Iggy Suarez, is now with the Bluefish so it was fun catching up with him as well.  All the other guys signed and were really nice, especially Alexis Gomez.  He introduced himself to Gavin and talked for a couple of minutes while signing some cards.  After we went home we did find some more cards of him too!  We can't wait to see the Fish again and are excited because they will have a team card set this year for the first time since 2008! 

As for the game, it was a great pitchers duel that the Barnstormers won 1-0.  Post game fireworks shot off from the field ended a great night of baseball and catching up with some of our favorite ballplayers.  Luis gave Gavin his wristband after the game too...he has finally taken it off.  :)

Gavin with Luis' wrist band

He wore his new wrist band to bed!

Today's Autographs:  21
2013 Autographs: 110
2013 My donation: $5.50