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First off I would like to congratulate the Dodgers Lifestyle team on winning the tournament with a hard fought victory over Next I would like to thank all the players and teams who attended the event. Some for the first time and many others who have played before. It is you who help make this event happen and I’m very grateful that all of you give up your time to come out.

I want to tell you about my experience when I dropped the food off at the Los Angeles mission. I was not prepared for what I saw when I arrived there. In the past someone has taken the food to the charity for me. This time since the food donations were not so much I decided to do it myself. As I entered the area of skid row. My heart just broke seeing all of those people living on the street.

The reason for this event is because one time I ended up homeless after having a bad reaction to some prescribed medicine. When I entered the shelter here the nicest people I have ever met where the ones who had nothing. They helped me stay warm since it was the middle of winter here on the east coast and got me through a very rough time in my life. Though it was only for a week till I was able to find a place to stay. I will never forget their generosity. As I walked to a friends house I passed a minor league stadium here and paused to look inside from the outfield gate. Seeing the grass not covered with snow gave me hope that baseball will be back soon and things will get better in my life. I made a promise to myself that when I am able. I will pay back the kindness showed to me by the homeless people here and the members of my site who also helped me. That is why I do the tournament and why it means so much to me to help those less fortunate.

There will be a fourth tournament I promise. But there will be some changes made for the next one. I was disappointed in the food collected for this tournament. Some teams really shined and came through for me and others did not bring a single can of food for the charity. In the past we collected an entire full size truck bed full of food to the point the springs on the truck were overloaded. This time the collections fit into the trunk of my rental car. I know everyone gets excited to play but please remember that this is what the event is truly about. That brings me to my second little peeve about the tournament.

Teams and players not showing up. This time there was a site who had entered two teams. Three players showed up out of almost forty players registered for those teams. In addition to those players. Several other teams were short a few players. I did my best to fill those teams for them but there is only so much I can do. I started this months in advance so we don’t have this issue. There is plenty of notice for the date and I update all the teams rosters once they start to fill. All I ask is for those sites who want to play is promote the event on their sites and get their players signed up and paid. This makes my life a lot easier and less stressful. Remember I have a team also and in the past I’ve had three. It takes more of a commitment than just posting the tourny info one time and showing up to play. So for the next one the deadline will be final. No exceptions for any team or player. All players and teams must have full paid rosters before the event. I will help some teams if I can but there has to be some help from the other end as well. A lot of headaches can be avoided by just getting your players signed up and paid. If the players pay they will show up. Trust me on that.

Again I want to thank everyone who did come out and I’m sorry to those teams who got effected by the no show teams and lost out at a playoff spot. I promise that will never happen again. I look forward to doing it all again with you soon. I just need a little break right now.


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