As we have already reported the Mint Hill American Legion Post 4059 senior team lost in the quarterfinal round to the Gaston Braves 3-2 in a best of five game series in the Western regionals of the state championship. However, the competition continues as North Carolina is down to the final two teams one representing the East and one club from the West to determine the state champion who will travel to Asheboro, North Carolina for the Regional Tournament beginning on August 2-6.
Real fans of American Legion Baseball might have an interest in some solid facts by the numbers.
1926 was the first year of American Legion Baseball, it all started from a proposal made by the Department of South Dakota in 1925.
60,000 Plus young athletes participate in American Legion baseball every year around the country.
120,000 Paid fans attended the 2016 American Legion World Series (ALWS) and larger crowds are expected in 2017. The crowds have increased steadily in record breaking numbers over the past six years.
71 Former American Legion Baseball players have been voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. This years three inductees into the Hall include Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Ivan Rodriguez who all played American Legion baseball.
64 Teams will qualify for the eight regional tournaments on August 2-6. The regionals will be held in Asheboro, N.C., Denver, CO., Dickinson, N.D., Leesburg, VA., Missoula, MT., Napoleon, OH., New Orleans, LA., and Shrewsbury, MA.
15 Games will be webcast on ESPN3, available online for every contest during this years ALWS, beginning on August 10-15.
9 Games to be broadcast live on national television on ESPNU.
8 Teams will eventually take the field in Shelby, N.C. for the ALWS. Each team will get to play one game on national television on ESPNU. The championship game will also be nationally televised.
208 The Direct TV channel for ESPNU.
141 The Dish Network channel for ESPNU.
The American Legion and Diamond award $25,000 in scholarships annually. If interested you can download applications at legion.org/scholarships/baseball. Also, visit www.legion.org/baseball watch for full television listings covering all ESPNU games.
Fans can also keep up with the latest game news, activities and entertainment during the ALWS and much more at www.legion.org/baseball.
Shelby is not a long drive from the Charlotte metro area, if you or family enjoy a good brand of baseball plan early and purchase your tickets ahead of time. While in Shelby you can enjoy not only the game, but all the festivities surrounding the event.