11/18/2008 9:51 AM
Cape Baseball League’s Hall of Fame
Auction Features Tickets to Baltimore,
Toronto Games, plus Fenway Park Seats
CHATHAM, Mass. – Looking for the perfect gift for that sports fan in the family?
If so, check out the silent auction currently under way online at www.capecodbaseball.org and continuing on Saturday, Nov. 22, at the Cape Cod Baseball League’s annual Hall of Fame Brunch and Induction Ceremony at the Chatham Bars Inn.
“This is the most impressive selection of items we’ve ever offered,” said auction director Dan Dunn, who also serves as general manager of the Falmouth Commodores and as the Cape League’s director of memorabilia. “Our friends in Major League Baseball have made some terrific donations that should prove very popular among bidders.”
Thinking of a baseball trip next summer? Well, the auction offers VIP seating and on-field batting practice passes for four people at two of baseball’s premier locations – Camden Yards in Baltimore and the Rogers Centre (formerly Skydome) in Toronto. Closer to home, the Brockton Rox have donated a single-game package for six in Bill Murray’s Hot Corner, which includes all sorts of goodies, including plenty of food, baseballs and T-shirts for everyone and a chance to meet the Rox players and coaches.
Want to hit a home run with your youngster? You’ll want to bid on “A Day with Bobby V,” a great package of baseball and food donated by the legendary former Major League player and manager Bobby Valentine at his sports academy and restaurant in Stamford, Conn. Valentine, who played at Yarmouth in 1967 and was the Dodgers’ first-round draft choice the following spring, saw his playing career cut short by injuries, but went on to manage the Texas Rangers and New York Mets before being lured to Japan, where he has now become one of that nation’s most popular sports figures as manager of the Chiba Lotte Marines of the Nippon League.
He will personally instruct up to four youngsters in the fine points of baseball at his state-of-the-art sports academy, then take the visiting group to his popular restaurant for lunch.
For those who prefer to stay home, how about two actual grandstand seats from Fenway Park?
That’s right, the Boston Red Sox have donated two seats from fabled Fenway that you can set up in your own home. Settle back with a soda and a box of pop corn and enjoy the ball game on TV from your own “luxury seats.” These seats quickly sold out when the Sox offered them to fans late last summer at $995 a pair. But one set was put aside especially for the Cape League auction.
For the youngster starting out as a sports card collector, the auction has an incredible offer. A minimum bid of just $25 might let you take home a massive collection of nearly 20,000 cards – baseball, basketball, football, hockey and golf. This unsearched accumulation of cards has been separated and boxed by categories and is sure to include many of your favorite athletes from years gone by.
Pastime Cards & Collectibles of West Yarmouth has also donated a special, 18-card set featuring former Cape Leaguers who have reached the Major Leagues. Big-name players in this lot include recently named National League Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum (Harwich 2005) and American League Rookie of the Year Evan Longoria (Chatham 2005), Longoria’s Tampa Bay teammate and Gold Glove first baseman Carlos Pena (Harwich 1996 & Wareham 1997) and two members of the World Champion Philadelphia Phillies, second baseman Chase Utley (Brewster 1998 & Cotuit 1999) and outfielder Pat Burrell (Hyannis 1996). Several present and former Red Sox players are also included, as are 2008 CCBL Hall of Fame inductees Ben Sheets (Wareham 1998 & Orleans 1999) and Matt Murton (Wareham 2001 & 2002).
There are autographed baseballs from Major League stars, and other sensational signed items, including a genuine Patriots jersey from future Football Hall of Famer Randy Moss and an authentic Dodgers jersey from former Red Sox star Nomar Garciaparra (Orleans 1993), himself a member of the Cape League Hall of Fame.
And the Cape Cod Central Railroad has generously offered tickets for two on the famed Cape Cod Elegant Dinner Train. The winning bidder and a guest will enjoy a five-course gourmet meal during a leisurely three-hour train ride departing from the Hyannis station and including a Cape Cod Canal crossing.
The auction takes on added significance this year because all proceeds go toward supporting Hall of Fame activities, including the operation of the league’s new facility located in the John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum. “We are very proud of our new Hall of Fame Museum,” said Dunn, who helped oversee the move to Hyannis from the former location at the Heritage Museum and Gardens in Sandwich. “Part of our auction proceeds will be used to ensure its continued operation and success.”
Saturday’s event is the Cape League’s annual off-season highlight, bringing together many legendary figures from the past as it welcomes a new class of Hall of Famers. Eight men will join the league’s elite, including two present Major Leaguers – Milwaukee pitcher Sheets and Oakland outfielder Murton. Others to be inducted are Chatham A’s bullpen ace Derrick DePriest, Cotuit All-Star slugger Bob Hansen, Cotuit flame-throwing reliever Jeff Innis, versatile and durable Falmouth performer Roche Pires and former Cape League deputy commissioner and president Robert A. McNeece of Chatham.
Pires and McNeece will be inducted posthumously.
The league will also present its Executive of the Year and Lifetime Achievement awards during the event.
Also on hand will be legendary broadcaster and sports writer Peter Gammons of ESPN and Boston television personality Scott Wahle, who returns as master of ceremonies for the event, which will be carried live on the Internet by WBZ103.com and shown locally on tape delay on Comcast’s community access cable outlet, Channel 17.
A limited number of tickets remain. See the league’s web site for details. And those interested in bidding online may check out the web site or send an e-mail to auction director Dunn at firstname.lastname@example.org for a complete list of items.
Joe Sherman, CCBL Public Relations Staff (email@example.com)
John Garner, Jr.
Director of Public Relations & Broadcasting