South Jersey Baseball:
Thursday, May 20, 2004
By Dan Loney
The Trenton Thunder, the Double-A Affiliate of the New York Yankees, have announced that Baseball Hall of Famers Whitey Ford and Rollie Fingers, will be making appearances at Waterfront Park this season. The New Jersey Lottery presents Whitey Ford in Trenton on June 7 while Rolaids presents Rollie Fingers visiting Waterfront Park on August 25.
Whitey Ford, a sixteen year veteran of the New York Yankees, will be appearing in Trenton on Monday, June 7. The eight time Major League All Star will throw out a ceremonial first pitch and be available on the concourse for autographs. Ford compiled a career record of 236-106 and ERA of 2.75. In 1961, Ford had an amazing season by going 25-4 with a 3.21 ERA en route to the Cy Young Award, World Series MVP Award and a fifth place finish in the regular season MVP Award voting. Ford appeared in 11 World Series with the Yankees and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.
The New Jersey Lottery, has developed a new game entitled “Winning Legends.” The $2 ticket features Ford and former Yankees Reggie Jackson and Yogi Berra. The top prize for the game is $30,000.
June 7 is Arm & Hammer Mini Bat Night with the first 2,000 fans receiving a Thunder Mini Bat. Rider University Head Baseball Coach Sonny Pittaro will be inducted into the Trenton Baseball Hall of Fame in a ceremony prior to the game. The Thunder will play the Portland Sea Dogs at 7:05.
Rollie Fingers, who pitched for the Oakland A’s, San Diego Padres and Milwaukee Brewers over the course of his 17 year Major League career will be in Trenton on Wednesday, August 25. Fingers had a career record of 114- 118 but made his mark as one of the premier relief pitchers in the game. He collected 341 saves in his career and led the league in saves three times. He is currently 7th on the all-time career saves list. Fingers collected numerous awards during his career including the 1974 World Series MVP, 1981 AL MVP, and the 1981 AL Cy Young Award. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1992.
On August 25 the Thunder will give out bobblehead dolls featuring Derek Jeter in a Trenton Thunder uniform to the first 2,000 fans ages 6 and older. The Thunder take on the New Britain Rock Cats at 7:05.
“We are thrilled to be able to provide our fans with a chance to meet these two baseball legends,” said Thunder General Manager Rick Brenner.
Ford and Fingers will join Gary Carter, Orlando Cepeda, Bob Feller and Gaylord Perry as members of the Baseball Hall of Fame who have visited Waterfront Park for Trenton Thunder games over the years.
The Thunder will play the final game of a four game series with the Altoona Curve (Pittsburgh Pirates) tonight at Waterfront Park. Tickets are available for all Thunder games by calling 609-394-3300 or online at www.trentonthunder.com.
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