05/06/2011 4:39 PM
The Rockford Foresters Baseball Team announced today its promotional schedule for the 2011 season which includes giveaway items as well as select theme days. "During our second season at Historic Marinelli Field, we wanted to have promotions that were executed well and that people actually wanted to go to," said Majority Owner/President Joe Stefani. "So many times sports team put on promotions and they are either not executed well or have no meaning. We wanted to do the right promotions the right way and I think our fans present and future will see that this summer at Historic Marinelli Field."
Highlights of the 2011 promotional schedule include Military Appreciation Night on Friday, June 24 where all Military members past and present get in the game for free. Pre-game color guard will be presented by the Marine Corps League and there will be a special first pitch before the game as well. Friday, June 3: Pink Drawstring Bag Giveaway for Ladies sponsored by Hinckley Springs Saturday, June 4: Rockford Sharefest Night (100% of ticket sales go to Sharefest) Sunday, June 5: Rockford Sharefest Day (100% of ticket sales go to Sharefest) Friday, June 17: Keychain Giveaway sponsored by Miller Lite Sunday, June 19: Logo Baseball Giveaway for Dads and Pre/Post-Game Catch on the Field Friday, June 24: Military Appreciation Night (all Military members get in for free) Friday, July 8 (11am) game: Enjoy a daytime game at Historic Marinelli Field Friday, July 8 - Sunday, July 10: Christmas in July sponsored by Oriental Trading (bring a new toy for Toys For Tots and get in the game for free) Saturday, July 16: Senatorist Night, come meet Democratic State Senators from Wisconsin (union members get in for free) Friday, July 22: Decal Giveaway
After every game, run the bases and get autographs Single game, group tickets, and season tickets are all on sale right now by visiting http://www.RockfordForesters.com or by calling (815) 312-2115.
About the Rockford Foresters: The Rockford Foresters are a member of the Midwest Collegiate League, which is a summer collegiate wood bat league that is based in Northern Illinois and Indiana. Going into their second season, the team comes off winning the league's championship. The Rockford Foresters play at the historic 2,300 seat Marinelli Field, which is owned by the Rockford Park District. The Rockford Foresters are owned by majority owner Joe Stefani, in addition to a group of shareholders.
ROCKFORD Nobody said it would be easy. Or always pretty.
And in Fridays season opener for the Rockford Foresters, it certainly wasnt quick.
The Foresters continued to find an answer, including the 15th-inning game-winner, during a 6-5 victory in a four-hour-and-10-minute Game 1 of the day-night double-header against the Southland Vikings at Marinelli Field. They then returned for the finale, which didnt go nearly as well as they were swallowed up by an 11-1 tally.
Though they left with a bad taste in their mouths, because of their grit and determination in Game 1 the Foresters can still take the series with a win in Saturday nghts home game.
It wasnt always pretty, but to get the win in an opener like that helped a lot, second-year head coach Rene Valdez said. Its kind of funny because before the opener, we were talking about how much depth we have this year. I didnt expect to have to use it this early, but it really came through.
Last year they won the first Midwest Collegiate League title, knocking off Southland in a three-game series. But this Forester team had only one practice together before Fridays opener, and that was on Thursday. It showed a bit early in Game 1, and even more in Game 2.
Opening-game starter Luke Ingersoll struggled early, giving up two runs on two hits (and a throwing error) in the top of the first. He then settled down, and left with a 2-2 tie intact with one out in the ninth.
Rockford didnt get its first hit of the season until the bottom of the third, and they squandered that one with a base-running gaffe. The Foresters did muster two runs with the help of three consecutive errors by Viking pitcher Keith Greer in the fourth, with outfielder Ryan Adams hauling in the first Forester hit of the season a seeing-eye, infield grounder and the teams first run of the year.
He finished the game 3-for-5 with two runs scored, including one on Daryn Streeds RBI-single to tie the game up at 4-all in the bottom of the 11th.
Then in the 15th, down 5-4, the Foresters put it away.
What a long game; jeez. It really does feel good to get that first win, though, no matter how it comes, said shortstop Regulo Moy, whos lined shot to left proved to be the walk-off winner. We were pretty tired, but we held it together and came through. We showed a little something in that opener.
They also showed something in the night game, but it wasnt what Valdez wanted to see.
In this one, we just got our butts kicked. We definitely didnt come to play in that second one, Valdez said. It was a roller-coaster today. Overall it was good to see. We saw the fight this team has with 15 tough innings early, then we saw the other side, which was maybe some overconfidence. We saw how quickly it can turn around.
Rockford had just seven hits in the second game, and starter Marc Ulloa left after five innings of work with his team down 7-1. It only got worse.
Valdez expects another about-face Saturday.
We sure better have one, he added. You have to have a real short memory in this game. We need to come out, forget about this mess, and win this series.
First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. back at Marinelli Field.
The Foresters defeated the Chicago Zephyrs, 3-0, behind a few impressive pitching performances last night. Rockford is now 3-2 in conference while Chicago is 1-3.
The Foresters star of the night happened to be Rockford native Ziggy Vanderwall. He started on the mound and pitched 5 strong innings, striking out 10, giving up only 3 hits, and walking none. His replacements faired just as well, Dan Hutcheson and Brian McCabe combined to pitch the final 4 innings for the shutout. Hutcheson gave up only 2 hits in his 3 innings of work and McCabe shut the door on the Zephyrs earning the save.
Ryan Adams paved the way offensively for Rockford, going 3-3 and driving in the game-winning run in the 4th inning. Garrett Gee went 2-3 driving in shortstop Regulo Moy as insurance run in the 5th.
As well as Vanderwall pitched, he was nearly matched inning for inning by Chicago starter Ryan Hudspeth. The Chicago hurler went 8 solid innings, scattering 9 hits, only one extra base hit, and gave up 3 runs. The best chance for the Zephyrs came in the 8th with 2 out and runners on 2nd and 3rd, Hutcheson got Chicagos Will Fuentes to end the inning on a line out to second base.
Rockford returns to action tonight, first pitch scheduled for 7 against the Will County Crackerjacks at Marinelli Field
Since 2010, Marinelli Field has been home turf for the Rockford Foresters, which plays in the Midwest Collegiate League. The district notified the Foresters in November its lease would be terminated. In January, the Park District requested proposals from organizations interested in renting Marinelli. The Foresters sent an email to fans announcing that they'll play 2013 games on the road.
"When we approached the Rockford Park District about renting Marinelli Field back in 2009, they were desperate to get someone to rent the facility," Foresters General Manager Joe Stefani wrote in the email. "This facility became a drain of taxpayer funds because the Rockford Park District let this facility remain unused/not to its potential as well as go into disrepair."
Stefani detailed a series of complaints about the district in his email, including bursting pipes, mold and failing equipment in public restrooms. Park District officials say the lease required the Foresters to handle field and facility maintenance.
"With problems not being fixed as we highlighted to them ... our revenue suffered not only at the box office, but with rentals from youth baseball tournaments," Stefani wrote.
The Foresters paid the Park District $12,500 for 2010 and about $14,000 for 2011 but owe the Park District about $16,000 for 2012, according to the district. The Park District is negotiating a payment plan with the Foresters, officials said.
Dimke said the Foresters notified the district in September that they would no longer use the stadium.
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