USC Aiken Baseball Coach Kenny Thomas believes spectators will have a good time at the third annual USC Aiken Fantasy Baseball Game on Thursday.
“Sometimes it’s going to be hilarious, and sometimes you are going to be amazed because you will see plays made that you can’t believe,” Thomas said.
The seven-inning contest will be held at the Roberto Hernandez Stadium on USC Aiken’s campus. Players will be introduced at 7 p.m., and the first pitch will follow 10 minutes later.
The cost of admission is $5. Tickets are $35 each for the game and an oyster roast and low country boil that is scheduled from 7:30 to 11 p.m. on Friday at The Big Red Barn, which is located at 187 Chime Bell Church Road.
Proceeds from the events will benefit the USC Aiken baseball team and Carley’s Rays of Hope, which provides financial assistance, as well as emotional and spiritual support, to the families of children with brain and spinal tumors in South Carolina.
“Carley’s Rays of Hope is very special to me,” Thomas said. “I don’t think you could find a better charity to be involved with because it helps kids.”
The Fantasy Baseball Game will feature two teams made up of members of the community who pay $200 each to participate.
“It’s for those who still think they can (play baseball) and those who think they could,” Thomas said. “Their levels of skill vary. We have dentists and veterinarians and lawyers.”
Also on the teams’ rosters are former USC Aiken Assistant Baseball Coach David Brinkley and former USC Aiken baseball players Steven Spire, Mitch Hearne and Beau Hill. Brinkley played baseball for Volunteer State Community College and Tennessee Technological University.
Celebrity coaches for the game will be Tom Galardi, who was USC Aiken’s first baseball coach, and Dr. Sandra Jordan, USC Aiken’s chancellor. The pitchers for the teams will be USC Aiken Assistant Baseball Coaches DJ King and Nolan Belcher.
There will be prize giveaways during the game, and a fireworks show will follow.
In addition, tickets for a chance to win a 2014 Jeep Wrangler will be available for purchase at the oyster roast and low country boil event Friday.
For more information, call Scott McMaster at 803-292-8461 or Loren Ivey at 803-645-6261.
Dede Biles is a general assignment reporter for the Aiken Standard and has been with the newspaper since January 2013. A native of Concord, N.C., she is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.