Thursday, September 4, 2014

Little League World Series Autographs

School has started and we've been really busy with homework and fall baseball, but we're finally getting around to updating our autographs from the Little League World Series.  It is really fun walking around the complex and seeing all the players and the ESPN personalities.  

Little League World Series 2014

There were 2 girls in this years Little League World Series and they were good!  It was cool to meet Mo'ne Davis and Emma March and get them to sign for us.  We also got to meet Barry Larkin and he was really cool.  He stayed and signed for everyone and posed for pictures.  

Barry Larkin, ESPN, Hall of Fame 2012
We were able to get team signed balls from several teams and our favorites were Australia, Mexico, New England, and Mid Atlantic.  

Czech Republic

Mid Atlantic

Emma March, Canada

Rhode Island

Mid Atlantic

Gavin also was able to get a photo of him and Karl Ravech signed that he had taken with him last year.  
Karl Ravech, ESPN
It was another great Little League World Series and we can't wait to get back next year!  

Today's Autographs: 79
2014 Autographs: 244
2014 My Donation $12.20

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Little League World Series Photos

You know it's the end of summer when the Little League World Series comes around.  We got to go back up to Williamsport for the 2nd straight year and watch a couple of days of good baseball.  Today will be pictures from the weekend, and tomorrow we will post the autograph section from the weekend.  The cool thing about going to Williamsport is the different teams you get to meet and know their stories.  There were many great stories this year...Coach Dave Belisle's inspiring speeches, Jackie Robinson West as an all African-American team, and Mo'ne mania! We got to see a little bit of everything and that's what makes Little League great!  So here are a few pictures from the weekend with more pictures and autograph updates coming tomorrow.

We've arrived

Gavin pitching in the Kellog's tent

Blake talking with some players from Australia

Gavin with the Mexico team

The boys from Philly!

The other girl in the tournament from Canada, Emma March

Go Taney!

Gavin with Jaheim Benton and Brandon Green from Chicago

Walk off win for Rhode Island!

The Orange guy

Hall of fame shortstop and ESPN broadcaster Barry Larkin

Blake throwing a strike at the dunk tank

Dad in the dunk tank

Beautiful day and packed house!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Fish and Monkeys in Minor League Baseball

A few weekends ago, we got to catch up with our friend Luis Lopez and the Bridgeport Bluefish.  We always look forward to the Bluefish coming to town and getting to see Luis.  With our busy baseball schedule, this is the first time we got to see him this season.  We also took Kyle tonight so he could see the Cowboy Monkey.  He was so excited!  The Cowboy Monkey is on of the most popular acts in Minor League Baseball right now and is definitely worth seeing.  It was a fun night of friends, baseball, autographs, and monkeys!  You never know what you'll see at the ball park!  The Barnstormers won the game 11-3.

Blake, Kyle, Luis, and Gavin

Luis signing Kyle's glove

"Look at the monkey!"

Cowboy Monkey Rodeo

Today's Autographs: 18
2014 Autographs: 165
2014 My Donation $8.25

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Card Set, Candy Drop and Thunderstorms

The Barnstormers were having a big game last Thursday.  It was a big game for kids!  This was the night they would be giving away their 2014 team card set and they also had a helicopter that was going to do a candy drop for kids after the game.  I was at some friends playoff baseball game but Gavin and dad went to the Barnstormers.  Gavin was looking forward to the candy drop.  

Gavin got a ball!

Jason Richardson signing for Gavin
They got there early to get their card sets and were able to get lots of them signed.  About the 3rd inning the skies opened up and a huge storm hit.  Dad even got a picture of Barnstormers manager, Butch Hobson, helping the grounds crew with the tarp.  

Butch Hobson helping the grounds crew
The game went into a looooooong rain delay and so they left.  Because of the storm, the candy drop was also cancelled.  It was a cool idea and they did reschedule it for August 15.  Oh yea, they did resume play about 10:30 and the Barnstormers won 9-5 when the game finally ended!

Today's Autographs: 42
2014 Autographs: 147
2014 My Donation $7.35

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Independence Day Baseball!

I was away with a friend over the July 4th weekend, but Gavin was able to catch a Barnstormers game.  My cousins Brooke and Garrett were in from Tennessee so he was able to go to the game with them.  Gavin was able to get a few autographs before the game, even though it was packed!  It was the 3rd largest crowd in Barnstormers history...8,294!  It probably helped that it was the cross town rival York Revolution and a great 4th of July fireworks display!  One of the things that the Barnstormers bullpen does is line up somewhere different every game for the National Anthem.  Tonight, they stretched along the infield grass and all held American flags! The Barnstormers won 4-3 but Gavin spent much of the night just catching up with cousins.

Today's Autographs: 11
2014 Autographs: 105
2014 My Donation $5.25

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Providence Friars Coach Ed Cooley

This past week we got a really cool box in the mail.  We get to see a lot of Big East basketball and had been watching some Providence games.  I noticed that Friars Coach, Ed Cooley, had a bald spot on his head and wondered if it could be alopecia areata.  We wrote a letter to Coach Cooley and told him of what we are doing in trying to raise awareness for alopecia areata. So back to the box... in the box, coach sent us an autographed photo, Providence backpack, 2 t shirts, a hat, and a water bottle.  Better than all of that was a hand written letter from Coach Cooley stating how proud he was of what we were doing and that he was glad to help.  We are hoping to catch the Friars in action next basketball season when they are in the Philly area.  Thanks Coach!  We appreciate it!

Today's Autographs: 1
2014 Autographs: 94
2014 My Donation $4.70

Monday, July 7, 2014

Games 3 &4: Blue Crabs @ Lancaster

We were able to make it back to the ball park last weekend and couldn't wait to see the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs.  We are huge Luke Murton fans and he just joined the Atlantic League a couple weeks before.  Luke is our Uncle and Aunts nephew and we've got to see him play different times since he was at Georgia Tech. We got there early on Friday and got to see Luke and catch up with him.

Lance Burkhart is the manager for the Blue Crabs now after spending 8 of the last 9 years in a Barnstormers uniform as player and then hitting coach. Before the game, Lance was inducted into the Barnstormers Ring of Honor as part of the 10th season celebration.

Sunday we got to play catch on the field and then we were asked to be the "Play Ball" family.  After the National Anthem we got the say "Play Ball"  Gavin and Kyle went on the bumper boats and Kyle fell into the pool.  He was wearing a life jacket, but dad had to dive in and get him.  At least it was a hot day so they could cool off.  Dad had some of our cards in his pocket so they are a little wrinkled and not in the best shape, but we did get them dried off. Kyle just said "I sinked" but he does want to ride the bumper boats again, so that is good.  The Blue Crabs took both games we were at and Luke played great!

Today's Autographs: 21
2014 Autographs: 93
2014 My Donation $4.65

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Kershaw's Challenge: Stikeout to Serve

Two years ago we teamed up with Clayton and Ellen Kershaw and their Strikeout to Serve project.  Clayton donates money for each strikeout he gets...and he gets a lot! We matched our donation to NAAF in 2012 and were able to donate $112 to Kershaw's Challenge.  So for every autograph we get during the 2014 year, we will once again be donating $.10 to Kershaw's Challenge.

Clayton and Ellen in Zambia Africa 2013

The "Challenge" is to use whatever you have been blessed with-talent, passion, or purpose-to give back to others. The Kershaws are adamant about serving hands-on throughout the year, and being invested in the non-profits we partner with.

Clayton is by far the best pitcher in baseball, throwing a dominant No Hitter just last week.  As good as he is on the field, he is even better off the field.  Clayton and Ellen use their gifts to help others.  After traveling to Zambia in 2011 they were able to open an orphanage for children called Arise Home.  They continue to do work in Africa as well as here in the states.

No Hitter

We are happy to be able to once again contribute a small amount that will help give children hope!  Check out their website and read all about the difference they are making around the world!