ALTON - Baseball fans will share their favorite stories and hear some new ones firsthand, as former Cardinal third baseman, Ken Reitz, hosts “Hot Stove Baseball” live at Alton High School Auditorium on Friday evening, July 27th at 7:00 pm.

Reitz was nicknamed "Zamboni" for his skill at scooping up hot shots on the artificial turf of Busch Memorial Stadium. In 1973, he replaced Joe Torre as the Cardinals' starting third baseman. In both 1973 and 1974, he led all National League third basemen in fielding percentage. In 1975 he won a Gold Glove Award at the position, breaking Doug Rader's streak of five consecutive Gold Gloves. In 1977 he set a National League record - only committing nine errors.

“Hot Stove Baseball with Ken Reitz” precedes the Illinois State American Legion Baseball Championship – July 28, 29, 30, 31at AHS’ new sports complex. On Friday, July 27th, players, coaches, and sponsors will be treated to an evening of celebration at a Tournament Banquet. The fundraiser, open to the public, features Ken Reitz live on stage with Legion players and open mics for questions from the audience. All proceeds benefit the local Legion program and tourney costs incurred by host team Alton Post 126. Tickets are $20 per person in advance and $25 at the door. Doors open at 6:30 with program beginning at 7:00.

For tickets and more information contact: Dennis Sharp, (618) 920-8938 or Nick Paulda, 618-604-8209, or post126baseball@yahoo.com.

“The tournament is affordable at $5 per person per game, and only $10 per person per day for 3 games,” Dennis Sharp, Alton Post 126 General Manager and Tournament Director exclaimed. “The quality of this competition is as good as it gets!”

The American Legion has considerable social impact throughout America, having won hundreds of benefits for veterans and produced many important community programs for children and youth. MLB professionals like Don Mattingly, Albert Pujols, Alex Gordon, and retired Cardinal pitcher, Chris Carpenter will tell you about the Legion’s impact on their lives.

“I tell the players regularly that the reason we’re here today may be baseball, but never forget the men and women serving in our Armed Forces that earned our freedom to play baseball,” General Manager Sharp noted.

Local sponsors include: Roberts Motors, RiverBender.com, LogoIt, St. Peters Hardware, and Confluence Business Advisors.

The American Legion was chartered by Congress in 1919 as a patriotic veteran’s organization. Focusing on service to veterans, service-members and communities, the Legion evolved from a group of war-weary veterans of World War I into one of the most influential nonprofit groups in the United States. Today, membership stands at over 2.4 million in 14,000 posts worldwide.

$10 for $20 Half Price Deals at deals.riverbender.com

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