Seven-time Major League Baseball All-Star and South Carolina native Bobby Richardson will speak at Faith and Family Night at Spirit Communications Park on Sunday, June 26, before the Fireflies host the Augusta GreenJackets. First pitch is scheduled for 5:05 p.m. and Richardson will deliver a faith-based speech shortly after gates open to the public at 4 p.m.
“The impact that Bobby has had, not only on the game of baseball, but on his home state of South Carolina as well, has been immense,” Fireflies President John Katz said. “He’s one of the most beloved Yankees to ever wear the pinstripes, but more importantly, he was a pioneer in bringing faith to the Yankees clubhouse and all of Major League Baseball during his playing days. We are truly lucky to have him this Sunday.”
Richardson, a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes Hall of Champions, played his entire 12-year career for the New York Yankees from 1955-1966, winning three World Series Championships. The second baseman played in arguably the best defensive infield of his era and helped the Yankees claim four more American League pennants in his career as well.
The Sumter, South Carolina, native was selected to seven All-Star games and was a five-time Gold Glove award winner. He was signed by the Yankees at the age of 17 after graduating from Edmunds High School in 1953. His ties to Columbia run deep as well – Richardson was the head baseball coach at the University of South Carolina from 1970-1976, leading the Gamecocks to their first College World Series appearance in 1975.
Richardson was known as one of the first Major League Baseball players to speak publicly about his faith. In 1970, at the request of President Richard Nixon, Richardson delivered a sermon at a White House worship service. In 1995, he officiated and preached at his long-time friend Mickey Mantle’s funeral.
Fans are encouraged to arrive at Sunday’s game early. Faith and Family Night will also feature a post-game concert from the Fresh Church Worship Band in the crescent patio. Fans will also be able to run the bases after the game and grab autographs from their favorite Fireflies players.
For more information on Faith and Family Night, please contact Scott Rhodes at (803) 888-3024 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Fans can also purchase their tickets to Sunday’s game by visiting FirefliesTickets.com or by calling (803) 726-HITS.