Lugnuts hosting Legends Celebrity Softball game Friday
The game will be held at Jackson Field and will raise money for local area non-profits.
LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Members of the News 10 team will join well-known past athletes from Detroit and Michigan State for the first-ever Legends Celebrity Softball Game on Friday night.
WILX Meteorologists Andy Provenzano and Justin Bradford and Stephanie McCoy and Holly Harper of Studio 10 will take part in the game held at Jackson Field, home of the Lansing Lugnuts. The game will raise money for local area non-profits.
“I am looking forward to playing alongside and against many great athletes and people in our community!” said Harper. “It will be fun to be a part of this inaugural event that will bring our community together and provide some much-needed fun.”
Bradford is excited to play with co-workers but is the only member of the WILX family on Team Cardinal.
“I’m very excited to be a part of an event that is both entertaining and dedicated to a good cause,” he said. “Interesting that I’m on the Cardinal Team and everyone else is on Silver… My coworkers must’ve thrown me on the other team to balance out the talent fairly!”
Gates open at 5:30 p.m. for a Celebrity Meet & Greet. Batting practice starts at 6:30, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:30.
Former area athletes that will be playing include:
Sims was a running back for the Detroit Lions from 1980 until 1984. Sims won the Heisman Trophy in 1978 and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1995. He is the owner of the Billy Sims Barbecue restaurant chain.
Cleaves, a native of Flint, led the Spartans to the national championship in 2000 where he was named the NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player. He is the school’s only three-time All-American and was also named Big Ten Player of the Year twice in his college career. Following the championship season at MSU, Cleaves was selected 14th overall in the 2000 NBA draft by the Detroit Pistons.
Best known as a member of the second incarnation of Detroit’s “Grind Line” alongside Kris Draper and Kirk Maltby, McCarty played for the Detroit Red Wings from 1993-2004 and again from 2007-2009. McCarty was a pivotal player in 1997′s Fight Night at the Joe. He helped lead the Wings to win the Stanley Cup with the game-winning goal over Philadelphia in game four. McCarty won the Stanley Cup a total of four times with Detroit (1997, 1998, 2002, and 2008) before retiring in 2009.
Robertson took the mound for the Detroit Tigers from 2003-2009. In 2006, he pitched five shutout innings against the Oakland Athletics in game 1 of the American League Championship Series, which the Tigers swept and went on to win their first pennant since 1984. He is part-owner of the Wichita Wingnuts.
A native of Kalamazoo, Duckett played running back for the Spartans from 1999-2001. In Michigan State’s victory over Michigan in 2001, he caught a touchdown pass from Jeff Smoker as time expired to upset the Michigan Wolverines 26-24. His record of 29 touchdowns is the sixth-best in MSU football history. Duckett was drafted 18th overall by the Atlanta Falcons in the 2002 NFL Draft. He went on to play for the Detroit Lions in 2007.
Galarraga is best known around the state as the Tiger that threw a perfect game... before being robbed of the honor. In what is widely known as The Imperfect Game on June 2, 2010, Galarraga almost became the 21st pitcher in Major League history to throw a perfect game. Facing the Cleveland Indians at Comerica Park, Galarraga retired the first 26 batters he faced. His bid for a perfect game was ruined - one out short - when first base umpire Jim Joyce incorrectly ruled that Indians batter Jason Donald reached first base safely on a ground ball. Instead of having the prestige of throwing a perfect game, Galarraga finished with a one-hit shutout in a 3–0 victory. Galarraga was forgiving and understanding of Joyce’s mistake. Without meaning any irony, he told reporters after the game, “Nobody’s perfect.”
“As a big baseball fan, I think it’s cool that we’ll get to share the same field with former Detroit Tigers, Armando Galarraga and Nate Robertson,” said McCoy ahead of the game. “I’m also looking forward to seeing how far Billy Sims, Andy Provenzano and Ralph Shaheen can hit the ball! The weather is going to be perfect and I hope lots of people can come and watch.”
The rosters will be split into Team Silver and Team Cardinal for the Friday night game. The rosters are posted at the end of this story.
“If I get a former Tiger or a Lion out, I WANT IT ON TAPE!” Harper pleaded.
Other celebrities taking the field include Trevor Penick from the band O-Town, Ralph Shaheen and Jason Cords of Shaheen, Paul Kuhan of the Lugnuts, and DAve “Mad Dog” Demarco.
Hear from some of the celebrities that will be taking the field in a clip HERE.
Tickets for the game can be purchased HERE.
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