‘TOUCHING THE GAME ALASKA”
I was in southern California a few years ago and watched my first “summer league” baseball game. I was familiar with American Legion and Babe Ruth ball, but never heard of this level baseball and wanted to see what the hubbub was all about. And so the Palm Springs Power (be sure and watch the video on their website, played to the tune “Boys of Summer“)was my introduction to College Summer Leagues. They’re a member of the Southern California College Baseball Association. The first game we went to was a night game and in Palm Springs in the summer it was a great experience with a lot of music, entertainment and great food. Only thing missing was a big electronic scoreboard at mid-field and I suppose they’ll have one of those next time we visit. We really did have a good time and returned for another game the next night.
Last week I received my new 2011 Baseball America Almanac and was surprised to see it had an extensive chapter on College Summer Leagues, listing not only the leagues, but the stats on the players from each team, just as it does for the Major League and Minor League players and teams. I love my Almanac! It gets pretty mangled from over-use each year and a new one arrives just as the finish is coming off the cover on the old one.
If you live in a city that has summer league baseball you might want to consider attending a few games. It’s where a lot of the college kids go to maintain and improve their skills during the off season so they can be in good condition when they return to their college baseball teams. Take a look at the Wikipedia Website College Baseball Summer Leagues and find a game or two next summer. You’ll be surprised! Which brings me back to the video shown above.
Honestly, I get some of my best stuff from fellow bloggers and this is one of them. It’s the movie called “Touching the Game Alaska” and tells about the history of the Alaska League and has some of the most beautiful scenery…..( it IS Alaska!) The surprise was the names of some of the big league players that have gone through their system, i.e., Tom Seaver, Dave Winfield, Mark McGwire, Randy Johnson, etc. I loved this movie! In fact, I liked it so much I’m seriously considering touring up there in the next few years just so I can watch that big game they talk about in the “land of the midnight sun”!
One more thing ~ the movie ends with a really, really great R&B baseball song, (you can preview it here) “The Ball Game” by Sister Wynona Carr. I bought the CD and have spent the past 4 months trying to get permission from the publisher to play it here for you, but alas, so far nothing. When I contacted the producers of the movie to inquire about it, they said it took them two years to buy the rights and cost a fortune, so you’ll have to settle for the preview here. But if permission ever comes through, I’ll be sure and share it with you. If any of you’ve had an experience with the Alaska League, please drop me an email. I’d like to hear about it!
- College Baseball Tournament Could See a Shake-Up in Near Future (bleacherreport.com)