Special Opening Ceremony for the City’s Inner City Youth Baseball and Softball Tournament

Communications Director

Eric Vreeland
evreeland@knoxvilletn.gov
(865) 215-3480

400 Main St., Room 654A
Knoxville, TN 37902

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News item

Special Opening Ceremony for the City’s Inner City Youth Baseball and Softball Tournament

Posted: 04/28/2016
City officials, along with special guest and Major League Baseball legend Graig Nettles, will host an opening ceremony for the City’s Inner City Youth Baseball and Softball Tournament on Friday evening at 5:30 p.m. at Caswell Park softball complex, 620 Winona St.

The event is part of a Major League Baseball initiative called “Play Ball,” a nationwide campaign to encourage urban youth to engage in the sports of baseball and softball. Mayor Madeline Rogero committed Knoxville to join the initiative through the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

The Inner City Youth Tournament is an annual event involving approximately 40 teams from all over Knoxville in four categories: boys baseball age 6 and under, 8 and under, and 10 and under, and girls 14 and under softball.

Graig Nettles, who now resides in Loudon County, set the American League record for career home runs by a third baseman. In 1977, he won the Gold Glove Award and had 37 home runs and 107 RBIs to help take the Yankees to the World Series.

He also played for the Minnesota Twins, the Cleveland Indians, the San Diego Padres, the Montreal Expos and the Atlanta Braves. 

In his 22-season career, he played 2,700 games in the Major Leagues, hitting 390 home runs.

Nettles will speak to the tournament players Friday and sign autographs following the opening ceremony.