PLAY Ball Returns for 18th Season July 19
(COOPERSTOWN, NY) – Seventeen years after his Hall of Fame induction, the Wizard is still creating magic in Cooperstown.
Ozzie Smith, the Education Ambassador for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, will host PLAY Ball with Ozzie Smith on Friday, July 19, from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. in Cooperstown. Ozzie will welcome fellow Hall of Famers Trevor Hoffman, Jim Thome and Alan Trammell as his guests during a fun-filled morning that gives fans a unique chance to experience on-field moments and stories with Hall of Famers.
Now in its 18th season, PLAY Ball is a Museum fundraiser that supports the Hall of Fame’s educational mission and internship scholarships. Participants in PLAY Ball each receive on-field round-robin interaction with the Hall of Famers, along with special mementos to commemorate their experience.
Call 607-547-0385 to secure your spot in the line-up today. This experience is an amazing opportunity to connect with Hall of Famers and create new memories that you will cherish for a lifetime.
The event will begin at 8 a.m. July 19 with an exclusive morning reception in the Hall of Fame Plaque Gallery with Ozzie and his Hall of Fame friends. Following the light breakfast and photos in the iconic Plaque Gallery, PLAY Ball participants will receive a commemorative gift to be autographed by all four Hall of Famers, before hitting the field at a Cooperstown-area diamond. Here participants will receive non-stop interaction, featuring stories and instruction from some of the greatest players the game has known.
The event will begin at 8 a.m. July 19 with an exclusive morning reception in the Hall of Fame Plaque Gallery with Ozzie and his Hall of Fame friends. Following photos, stories and interaction with the Hall of Famers, PLAY Ball participants will hit the field at a Cooperstown-area diamond, where they will receive two hours of instruction along with non-stop interaction from some of the greatest players the game has known.
PLAY Ball is a Museum fundraiser that supports the Hall of Fame’s educational mission and the Ozzie Smith Diversity Scholarships for the Museum’s Frank and Peggy Steele Internship Program for Youth Leadership Development. Since 2002, the program has raised more than $200,000 for the Museum’s initiatives.
Smith, known through his 19-year career as The Wizard of Oz, won a record 13 Gold Glove Awards at shortstop and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2002.
Hoffman, elected to the Hall of Fame in 2018, recorded 601 saves over 18 seasons with the Marlins, Padres and Brewers, earning seven All-Star Game selections. He led the National League in saves twice and posted a record-tying nine seasons with at least 40 saves.
Thome, a five-time All-Star, hit 612 home runs – eighth on the all-time list – during 22 seasons with the Indians, Phillies, White Sox, Dodgers, Twins and Orioles. Elected to the Hall of Fame in 2018, Thome is one of only five players in big league history with at least 500 home runs, 1,500 runs scored, 1,600 RBI and 1,700 walks.
A six-time All-Star and four-time Gold Glove Award winner at shortstop, Class of 2018 electee Alan Trammell spent his entire 20-season big league career with the Detroit Tigers. His 2,139 games at shortstop rank 11th on the all-time list, and his .977 fielding percentage ranks sixth among shortstops with at least 2,000 games played.
PLAY Ball is part of the July 19-22 Hall of Fame Weekend activities that will be highlighted by the July 21 Induction Ceremony when Harold Baines, Roy Halladay, Edgar Martinez, Mike Mussina, Mariano Rivera and Lee Smith will be inducted as the Class of 2019.
A limited number of spaces for PLAY Ball remain, and a reservation is required. Event pricing is $750 for Members, $1,000 for non-Members. Reserve spots now by calling 607-547-0385. For more information on Membership, please click here.
The Museum maintains the following Hall of Fame Weekend hours: Friday, July 19: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Saturday, July 20: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, July 21: 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Monday, July 22: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. For Hall of Fame Members, doors open at 7 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday and at 8 a.m. on Monday. As always, Hall of Fame Members receive free admission.