Baseball Heritage: Part 3 (Christians, Jews, and Other Folks)

Jewish_heritage_flyer2_t7jea3z7_slv1sbkfMy previous two posts have focused on “Heritage Nights” that celebrate countries of origin, ethnicity, and other groups in society). There are additional Heritage Nights and festivals being held at ballparks across the country that celebrate religious groups and other important segments of society. These include Celtic Night at the Frederick Keys as well as several celebrations of Mardi Gras.

Clearly, religion is an important part of society, because at least seven teams are celebrating Jewish Heritage, and several teams are hosting Faith Nights and All-Faith Nights, including the Birmingham Barons who have several “Church Nights.” The Iowa Cubs are holding “Christian Night” on June 7 and the Omaha Storm Chasers are having “Lutheran Night” on June 23 and “Mormon Night” on July 8. The majority of “Faith Nights” appear to have Christian themes, including Christian rock concerts and giveaways, such as the Wise Men bobblehead giveaways on June 29, July 11, and August 9 at the Nashville Sounds.

There are also a variety of special nights for military appreciation, scouts, ladies, little leaguers, the Negro Leagues, the World Cup, families, disability awareness, bacon, super heroes, boy bands, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, zombies, and Jimmy Buffett. The Charlotte Stone Crabs even have Lawyer Night, Bankers Night, and Hurricane Awareness Night (the Jacksonville Suns also have Hurricane Preparedness Night). And these days it seems like everyone has one or more Bark in the Park nights (including the Washington Nationals, though they call it “Pups in the Park”).

Only one team seems to be having a “Baseball Anthropology Day.” On May 5, you can “learn about conservation and the diversity of baseball’s culture with this Educational Day” at the Springfield Cardinals’ “Missouri Department of Conservation Educational Day & Baseball Anthropology Day.” The following day you can learn about weather and life-changing lessons learned through sports at the their “KY3 Weather School & Life Lessons through Sports Day.”

Bobblehead Update: Indian Heritage Night (May 17) at the Bradenton Marauders includes a Rinku Singh bobblehead, and on Tuesday, June 10, the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers will give away an Adam Jones bobblehead!! Other bobbles the Timber Rattlers are handing out (or already handed out) are: Scooter Gennett (4/3), Felix Hernandez (4/5), Brett Lawrie (4/29), David Oritz (5/13), Jim Henderson (7/1), Carlos Gomez (7/20), Asdrubal Cabrera (7/29), Khris Davis (8/3), Martin Maldonado (8/12), and Shin-Soo Choo (8/28). (I’m confused because not all of these players are with the Brewers organization, nor have they ever been. Maybe they’re on their wish list.) And don’t forget the First, Second, and Third Wiseman bobblehead giveaways at the Nashville Sounds!

Here are the remaining “Baseball Heritage Nights” for 2014:


5/23      San Francisco Giants

Celtic Night:

6/11      Frederick Keys (A)

Christian Night:

6/7        Iowa Cubs (AAA)

6/23      Omaha Storm Chasers (AAA) (this is actually “Lutheran Night”)

7/8        Omaha Storm Chasers (AAA) (this is “Mormon Night”)

Jewish Heritage:

5/18      Memphis Redbirds (AAA)

5/22      Lehigh Valley IronPigs (AAA)

6/26      Wilmington Blue Rocks (A)

7/28      San Francisco Giants

8/20      Staten Island Yankees (A)

8/20      Trenton Thunder (AA)

8/31      Lake County Captains (A)

LGBT Night:

6/12      Lancaster JetHawks (A)

6/26      San Francisco Giants

Mardi Gras Night:

5/1        Birmingham Barons (AA)

7/17      Mobile BayBears (AA)

8/14      New Orleans Zephyrs (AAA) (this is actually “Halfway to Mardi Gras” Night)

8/29      Modesto Nuts (A)



Baseball Heritage: Part 2 (Countries of Origin and Other Groups)

japanese_sm (2)This year, major and minor league baseball teams have scheduled promotional nights to celebrate the racial and ethnic heritage of many Americans. Is your background Armenian, or do you want to learn more about Armenian Americans? If so, head out to Fresno California and catch the Fresno Grizzlies game on August 13.

Interested in Polynesian, Portuguese, Japanese, or Korean culture? The San Francisco Giants have heritage nights for those groups and many more. Or maybe you’re Slovenian or Hungarian. Then check out games in Lake County, Ohio, where the Lake County Captains have heritage nights for them.

Below is a list of Baseball Heritage Nights celebrating individuals for various countries and other cultural origins. Tomorrow I’ll post my final piece in this series, covering the remaining Baseball Heritage Nights.

~ baseballrebecca


Armenian Heritage:

8/13      Fresno Grizzlies (AAA)


Asian Heritage:

4/25      Atlanta Braves


Black or African American Heritage:

5/27      Washington Nationals

9/26      San Francisco Giants


Chinese Heritage:

4/29      San Francisco Giants


Filipino Heritage:

5/12      San Francisco Giants

8/15      San Francisco Giants

8/22      Oakland A’s


Greek Heritage:

5/3        Charleston RiverDogs (A)

5/8        Lexington Legends (A)

5/21      Wilmington Blue Rocks (A)

6/25      Frederick Keys (A)

7/22      Chicago White Sox

8/7        Charlotte Knights (AAA)


Gullah Heritage:

8/1        Charleston Riverdogs (A)


Hawaiian or Hawaiian Luau Night:

7/3        Great Lakes Loons (A)

7/18      Helena Brewers (Rookie)

8/8        San Jose Giants (A)


Hungarian Heritage:

6/6        Lake County Captains (A)


Indian Heritage:

5/17      Bradenton Marauders (A)


Japanese Heritage:

5/15      San Francisco Giants

5/29      Philadelphia Phillies

7/30      Los Angeles Dodgers

8/3        San Jose Giants (A)

8/19      Oakland A’s


Korean Heritage:

4/28      San Francisco Giants


Native American:

6/23      San Francisco Giants

7/17      Albuquerque Isotopes (AAA)

8/26      Seattle Mariners


Polish Heritage:

5/22      Charlotte Knights (AAA)

6/9        Syracuse Chiefs (AAA)

6/13      Detroit Tigers

7/1        Chicago White Sox

8/6        Wilmington Blue Rocks (A)

8/12      Buffalo Bisons (AAA)


Polynesian Heritage:

6/9        San Francisco Giants


Portuguese Heritage:

6/6        San Francisco Giants


Slovenian Heritage:

8/4   Lake County Captains (A)



Baseball Heritage: Part 1 (the Big Four: German, Hispanic, Irish, and Italian)

Flyer for Italian Heritage Night with the San Francisco GiantsOne thing I love about minor league baseball is the teams’ creative ideas for promotions. Recently, Major League teams have followed suit by having similar promotions. The ones that caught my attention this year are those that I call “Heritage Nights.” This year, you can celebrate everything from Black Heritage to Slovenian Heritage at ballparks across the country.

Sociologists just love this kind of thing – especially the Baseball Sociologist! Someday I will analyze this more carefully, but for now I’ll just give you a rundown of the many heritages you can celebrate. For starters, the Omaha Storm Chasers held a generic-sounding “Heritage Night” on April 18. Its unclear which heritage(s?) they may have been celebrating, though it did include a pre-game parade featuring the St. Lucia Group (whoever they are) and a pre-game performance by a local Native American group. In addition, the Quad Cities River Bandits are holding “Global Cultural Night” on August 15, though they don’t explain what that entails. Maybe these celebrations are designed to celebrate everything.

Other teams are hosting celebrations that I’m not convinced are necessarily celebrating any sort of heritage. This include the many, many teams that are having Cinco de Mayo celebrations (though not all on May 5, or even in May), St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, and Mardi Gras celebrations (such as “Halfway to Mardi Gras” night at the New Orleans Zephyrs on August 14 and “Mardi Gras Night” hosted by the Modesto Nuts on August 29).  Of course, if you don’t want to profess any sort of heritage other than “American,” you can go to “American Heritage Night” on July 2 at the Wilmington Blue Rocks. (Which, I’m guessing, is likely related to 4th of July celebrations at several other ballparks.)

Today, I’m giving you the dates for the top 4 groups – those that them most teams are celebrating: German Heritage (also includes Oktoberfest), Hispanic Heritage (or Latino or Latin American Heritage), Irish Heritage (not including St. Patrick’s Day celebrations), and Italian Heritage.

Enjoy celebrating everyone’s heritage!

~ baseballrebecca

German Heritage and/or Oktoberfest:

4/24      Charlotte Knights (AAA)

6/16      Lehigh Valley IronPigs (AAA)

8/7        Akron RubberDucks (AA)

8/13      Wilmington Blue Rocks (A)

8/28      Tulsa Drillers (AA)

8/29      Tri-City ValleyCats (A)

9/6        Cincinnati Reds

9/19      Los Angeles Angels

9/19      Tampa Bay Rays

9/20      Oakland A’s

9/25      San Francisco Giants

9/26      Arizona Diamondbacks

9/27      Seattle Mariners


Hispanic/Latino/Latin American Heritage:

5/4        Round Rock Express (AAA)

5/5        San Jose Giants (A) (this is “Mexican Heritage Night”)

5/22      Fresno Grizzlies (AAA)

6/14      Kannapolis Intimidators (A)

7/10      Charlotte (AAA)

7/18      Great Lakees Loons (A)

7/23      Buffalo Bisons (AAA)

7/27      Toledo Mud Hens (AAA)

7/31      Toledo Mud Hens (AAA)

8/3        Charleston Riverdogs (A)

8/14      Texas Rangers

8/27      Syracuse Chiefs (AAA)

8/27      Wilmington Blue Rocks (A)

9/7        Cincinnati Reds

9/13      Seattle Mariners

9/13      San Francisco Giants

9/20      Houston Astros

9/23      Washington Nationals

9/26      Chicago White Sox


Irish Heritage:

4/24      Lehigh Valley IronPigs (AAA)

4/30      San Francisco Giants

5/4        Charleston Riverdogs (A)

5/7        Quad Cities River Bandits (A)

5/17      Reading Fightin Phils (AA)

5/19      Memphis Redbirds (AAA)

6/4        Wilmington Blue Rocks (A)

6/12      Akron RubberDucks (AA)

6/24      Buffalo Bisons (AAA)

6/26      Charlotte Knights (AAA)

7/17      South Bend Silver Hawks (A)

7/18      Columbus Clippers (AAA)

7/23      Peoria Chiefs (A)

7/31      Brooklyn Cyclones (A)

7/31      West Michigan Whitecaps (A)

8/7        Trenton Thunder (AA)

8/9        Lakewood BlueClaws (A)

8/12      Tri-City ValleyCats (A)

8/14      Charlotte Stone Crabs (A)

8/23      Lake County Captains (A)

8/27      San Francisco Giants

9/5        Cincinnati Reds


Italian Heritage:

5/14      Wilmington Blue Rocks (A)

6/24      San Francisco Giants

7/5        Hudson Valley Renegades (A) (this is “Sicilian Saturday” to be exact)

7/10      Charlotte Knights (AAA)

7/11      Lake County Captains (A)

7/18      Chicago White Sox

8/1        Tri-City ValleyCats (A)

8/1        Oakland A’s

8/2        San Jose Giants (A)


Buck Misses Arguing

DSCN4907According to Ben Standig and, Buck Showalter misses arguing with umpires.  Standig states: “The introduction of instant replay this season has curtailed the manager-umpire argument. That’s a bummer for O’s skipper Buck Showalter. … Showalter has yet to use the challenge rule this season, though he’s ventured onto the field at times to discuss matters with umpires — including during Saturday’s 2-1 win. ‘I got out there and I said [to the first-base umpire], How is this working for you? I really miss arguing with you guys,’ said Showalter. ‘He said, ‘We don’t.'”

Standig also notes that Showalter said to O’s catcher and current broadcaster Rick Dempsey, “‘Can you imagine Earl not being able to vent that frustration? … Never being able to argue all year.'”

So far, the use of instant replay certainly seems to be frustrating some managers, but we’ll have to see how it goes throughout the year. But Buck is probably right, Earl Weaver would be having no part of it!

~ baseballrebecca




So Much Baseball …

keep-calm-and-watch-baseball-13…so little time.  I know I complain about this every year, but there is SO much going on right now it’s really hard to get anything accomplished at my day job. Here’s a rundown of what’s happening this week:

  • Gio Gonzalez – Gio Gonzalez (my favorite Nats’ player) – is signing autographs TONIGHT at the Modell’s in Capitol Heights, Maryland (from 6 pm to 7 pm – get there by 5:30ish to get a number in line, or however they are doing it).
  • The Frederick Keys home opener is TOMORROW night. They are giving away not only a magnet schedule, but a calendar as well (this seems to be happening throughout the week). For a donation of $10, you can also pick a Mystery Ball – autographed by “minor leaguers, Major League Baseball Players and more!”
  • The Potomac Nationals‘ home opener is also tomorrow night. Even if I had the time off to go to the games, I couldn’t see both!
  • RIGHT NOW the Orioles are playing the New York Yankees in New York.  Tomorrow, the game also starts at 1 p.m. Why are the Yankees torturing me this way?
  • That Nats are in town playing the Marlins, Tuesday through Thursday.  And Gio’s pitching tomorrow. The Nats are taunting me with emails advertising “$1 Dogs.”
  • The Baysox are in town today through Wednesday. And they’re 4-0 so fare on the year. (Actually, they just announced that the game is postponed because of rain.)
  • The AFI Silver Theater and Cultural Center in Silver Spring continues their baseball film series through April 16.

And I’m sure there’s much, much more!  Right now, it’s a little too hard to “Keep Calm and Watch Baseball,” as the sign says… but I shall ATTEMPT to remain calm and stick to my regularly scheduled activities.

~ baseballrebecca

Gio Gonzalez, Spring Training 2012

Gio Gonzalez, Spring Training 2012


2014 Minor League Bobbleheads

Baysox' Machado GnomeIn honor of Opening Day at most minor league ballparks, I’ve put together a list of bobblehead giveaways in the International League (AAA), Eastern League (AA), Carolina League (A), South Atlantic League (A), and the New York-Penn League (A). (Admittedly, these are the teams that I would be most likely to go see, since the farm teams of the Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals are in these leagues. The rest you’ll just have to figure out yourself.)

The minor leagues often have an interesting take on things, including bobbleheads. The Akron RubberDucks, for example, have several Rock ‘n’ Bobble giveaways, which include DEVO, Joe Walsh, and Chrissie Hynde. The RubberDucks are also doing a salute to women in baseball and giving out a Sharon Hargrove bobblehead. Several teams are giving away bobbleheads of their mascots, local sports figures, and people I don’t know. The Charleston RiverDogs have a few good ones, including Bill Veeck.

And, in case you didn’t get one at Bowie last year, this year you can pick up a Manny Machado Gnome at the Delmarva Shorebirds on July 18.

4/3 Reading Fightins (AA) Chase Utley
4/9 Lehigh Valley IronPigs (AAA) Cody Asche
4/10 Lehigh Valley Jonathan Pettibone
4/12 Hickory Crawdads (A) Andrew McCutcheon
4/12 West Virginia Power (A) Starling Marte
4/19 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (AAA) Jon Zuber SWB Red Barons Statue
4/28 Lehigh Valley Ethan Martin
5/5 Bowie Baysox (AA) Mystery Bobblehead
5/9 Portland Sea Dogs (AA) Brandon Workman
5/9 Trenton Thunder (AA) Tony Clark Mini Bobblehead
5/10 Akron RubberDucks (AA) Sharon Hargrove
5/10 Wilmington Blue Rocks (A) Kayla Miller
5/10 Charleston Riverdogs (A) Tony the Peanut Man
5/14 New Britain Rock Cats (AA) Miguel Sano
5/17 Altoona Curve (AA) Geritt Cole Garden Gnome
5/17 West Virginia Don Nehlen and Bob Pruett
5/24 Akron DEVO
5/30 Trenton Mark Teixeira
6/3 Portland Will Middlebrooks
6/7 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Dave Miley SWB Yankees Statue
6/7 Gwinnett Braves (AAA) Mike Minor
6/9 Lehigh Valley Cesar Hernandez
6/12 Reading Jim Bunning (who will also be there signing autographs)
6/14 Akron Joe Walsh
6/14 New Britain Ted Williams
6/14 Potomac Nationals (A) Jayson Werth BobbleBeard
6/14 Asheville Tourists (A) Mr. Moon Bobble (mascot?)
6/19 Lehigh Valley Darin Ruf Garden Gnome
6/22 Lowell Spinners (A) Tooth Brush Holder Bobblehead
6/26 Wilmington Cowboy Monkey Rodeo Bobblehead
6/26 Lowell Pedro Martinez
6/28 Akron Chrissie Hynde
6/28 Potomac Bryce Harper
6/28 Gwinnett Chopper BobbleBank (mascot)
6/30 Reading John Kruk Garden Gnome
7/5 Akron The Black Keys
7/5 Altoona Pedro Alvarez
7/5 Potomac Anthony Rendon MLB Debut
7/5 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Derek Jeter SWB RailRiders Statue
7/5 Gwinnett Julio Teheran
7/5 Charleston Ghostbusters Bobblehead
7/9 Reading Domonic Brown
7/10 Lowell Canaligator (mascot) Military Bobblehead
7/11 Trenton Hideki Matsui
7/18 Richmond Flying Squirrels (AA) Chipper Jones
7/18 Lynchburg Hillcats (A) Evan “El Oso Blanco” Gattis
7/18 Delmarva Shorebirds (A) Manny Machado Gnome
7/19 Akron Jake Taylor
7/19 Pawtucket Red Sox (AAA) David Ortiz
7/19 Gwinnett Ron Gant
7/19 Charleston Bill Veeck
7/20 Wilmington Wil Meyers
7/21 Portland Xander Bogaerts
7/21 Tri-City ValleyCats (A) Johnny Evers
7/25 Trenton David Robertson
7/25 Rome Braves (A) Freddie Freeman
7/26 Frederick Keys (A) Nick Markakis
7/27 Reading Cole Hamels
8/2 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Media Bobblehead
8/4 Lakewood BlueClaws (A) Darin Ruf “Made the Phillies” Bobblehead
8/7 Bowie Travis Pastrana
8/7 Lowell Dave Roberts “The Steal” Bobblehead
8/8 Trenton Boomer (team mascot)
8/8 Aberdeen IronBirds (A) Bill Ripken
8/9 Akron Bernie Kosar
8/9 Asheville Russell Wilson
8/9 Hagerstown Suns (A) TBA
8/11 Aberdeen Cal Ripken, Sr.
8/12 New Hampshire Fisher Cats (AA) Fungo (team mascot)
8/12 Portland Daniel Nava
8/15 Norfolk Tides (AAA) Ron Johnson Gnome Figurine (manager)
8/16 Potomac Jayson Werth Wolf-A-Rine
8/19 Charlotte Knights (AAA) Jordan Danks
8/21 Lowell Johnny Boychuk Lock Monsters Bobblehead
8/23 Buffalo Bisons (AAA) ‘Chicken Wing’ Bobblehead
8/24 New Hampshire (AA) Ted Williams
8/26 Lakewood Greg Legg (manager)
8/28 Lexington Legends (A) Jose Altuve Mini Bobblehead
8/29 Trenton Player (TBD) Statues
8/29 Rochester Red Wings (AAA) TBA
8/29 West Virginia Gregory Polanco
8/30 Frederick Matt Wieters

Remember that all dates are subject to change and I may have gotten stuff wrong. Here are a few more notes:

  • The following teams have no bobbles, gnomes, or figurines listed on their schedules: Durham Bulls (AAA), Binghamton Mets (AA), Erie Seawolves (AA), Harrisburg Senators (AA), Carolina Mudcats (A), Myrtle Beach Pelicans (A), Salem Red Sox (A), Winston-Salem Dash (A), August Greenjackets (A), Charleston Riverdogs (A), Greensboro Grasshoppers (A), Kannapolis Intimidators (A), Savannah Sand Gnats (A), Staten Island Yankees (A),
  • The following teams list several giveaway dates as TBA (so, who knows? Maybe one of those will become a bobblehead day!): Syracuse Chiefs (AAA), Charlotte Knights (AAA), Hudson Valley Renegades (A).
  • The Greenville Drive (A) and most of the New York-Penn League have no promotions listed yet.
  • Sat. 8/9, Baysox at Trenton Thunder – “Win a Dishwasher” night (ok, so this is really a “note to self” since mine broke over a year ago)

Happy Minor League Baseball Season!

~ baseballrebecca


Baseball Proposals

Graphic of MLB proposal costs


In honor of Opening Day yesterday, posted a graphic of how much it costs to propose at each Major League Baseball stadium. The MLB average proposal cost is around $300, with prices ranging from $38.50 to $2,500, depending on where and how extravagant you want to your proposal to be.

For a rock-bottom price, propose in Pittsburgh. There it costs $38.50 to put your proposal up on the scoreboard. In Oakland, the same type of proposal will run you $85. The Yankees, of course, charge a little more – $100 for a scoreboard message. But they allow up to 10 proposals per game. The Twins limit the number of proposals per game to one (at $209).

Of course, some stadiums let you go bigger – in Miami for $500 you get a message on the scoreboard, a shot of you and your sweetie on the video screen, a PA announcement, and a dozen roses delivered by the team mascot, Billy the Marlin. (In 2012, a guy snuck onto the field and proposed to his girlfriend after she sang the National Anthem – I wonder if the Marlins sent him a bill.) For $450, the Phillies give you four tickets to the game, feature your proposal live on the video board, provide a champagne toast, and give you a commemorative DVD of the occasion.

The Dodgers offer two options. For a mere $75 you can have a message displayed on the scoreboard, or you can shell out $2,500 to have your proposal shown live on the video screen. Of course, only one such proposal per month is permitted. (Some teams limit proposals to zero per month – the Orioles, Angels, Blue Jays, Royals, and Mets just don’t bother with such non-baseball silliness.)

Interestingly, it costs less than $200 to propose at a San Francisco Giants game ($175 if you choose a weekend or “premium” game, $145 for other games). Unless you’re Kanye West, then you forget the game altogether and just rent out the whole stadium for $200,000.

~ baseballrebecca