Sparky Anderson Field Opens at CLU

Saturday, Jan. 28, 2006 2:20 pm

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (Jan. 28) – George “Sparky” Anderson, the Hall of Fame manager of the Cincinnati Reds and Detroit Tigers and a faithful CLU supporter, threw out the first pitch Saturday afternoon at the opening of California Lutheran’s new baseball stadium before a game between the current team and alumni.

An estimated crowd of over 500 was in attendance to see the first game played at George “Sparky” Anderson Baseball Field. Ernie Harwell, legendary announcer for the Detroit Tigers and friend of Anderson, spoke to the crowd in the pre–game festivities.

"Sparky" Anderson, the third most winning manager in major league history, managed the Reds in the 1970s during the "Big Red Machine" years. After joining the Tigers in 1979, he became the only manager to win a World Series in both leagues and the first to win 100 games in a season in both leagues. Anderson received the distinction of Manager of the Year four times in his career.

A friend and neighbor to CLU for nearly 40 years, Anderson founded the Sparky Anderson Golf Tournament which is held annually to benefit the CLU baseball program. He works enthusiastically with Coach Marty Slimak and the CLU baseball team, sharing his knowledge and skills of the game. A committed philanthropist, he founded the charity CATCH in 1987 to aid underprivileged children in Detroit.

The CLU baseball team will officially start the season on Friday, February 3 at 2:00 p.m. when they host Chapman at George “Sparky” Anderson Baseball Field.