April 2016 Community Recap

With the season starting the beginning of April, the Ports visited events throughout the community, in addition to holding some of their own events at Banner Island Ballpark!

Baseball by the Books:

Splash and Kellie visited one last participating Baseball by the Books school, John McCandless STEM Charter on April 20th, to help promote their upcoming fundraiser at the game.

Additionally, the Ports welcomed students and IMG_4476teachers who participated in the program to the games on Sunday, April 10th and Sunday, April 24th to celebrate their completion of the program.

Silver Sluggers:

On Wednesday, April 13th, the Ports held their first SCAN Silver Sluggers night of the season in which all Silver Sluggers members were able to attend the game, pick up their exclusive t-shirt, and enjoy some baseball bingo!

Ports FanFest:

On Saturday, April 23rd, the Ports welcomed fans to Banner Island Ballpark for a luncheon with the Ports’ entire roster. In addition to receiving a pizza lunch, donated by Eddie’s Pizza, fans were able to stick around and watch batting practice. All proceeds benefited the Stockton Ports Anchor Fund.

Community Events:DSCN1843

In addition to the Ports’ grassroots full-force grassroots efforts at the start of the season, Splash and front office members visited the following events.

  • United Way’s 90th Anniversary Celebration – 4/1
  • YMCA Golf Tournament – 4/20
  • Fitness Fun Day, Lincoln Elementary – 4/29

Fundraising Workshop:

On Friday, April 8th, the Ports hosted their first Fundraising Workshop in which local non-profits were invited to attend the game that evening and pre-game workshop to learn about how they can raise funds with the ports. With over 20 organizations in attendance, the Ports also welcomed fundraising veterans Parents by Choice and Activate Your Summer Campaign to speak about their experiences with the program and raffled off a suite for one lucky organization. For more information on the fundraising program please contact the Ports front office at 209-644-1953.

Donations:IMG_4545

49 non-profit organizations received 4 Field Box ticket vouchers to one 2016 Ports home game including but not limited to:

  • Black Hat Foundation
  • Children’s Museum of Stockton
  • Mary Graham Children’s Foundation
  • Sierra Vista Child and Family Services
  • Tracy Sutter Community Hospital
  • WATCH

March 2016 Community Recap

As the Ports prepared for Opening Day on April 7th, Splash and the front office made the rounds throughout the Stockton and surrounding communities!

Baseball by the Books:IMG_4270

The Ports concluded their 2016 Baseball by the Books school visits on Friday, March 4th as Splash visited Merryhill Elementary School in Stockton.

Little League Opening Day Ceremonies:

Splash and members of the Ports front office visited a few leagues to jump-start their seasons and help promote their league nights at the Ports games.

  • Tracy Little League (3/12)
  • Woods Creek Little League (3/19)
  • Sunset Little League (3/19)

Other Community Events:

Splash and/or the Ports Front Office attended various
additional events in the Stockton-San Joaquin community during the month of March, including:

  • AgVenture (3/1)
  • Read Across America Day at August Knodt (3/2)
  • Rising Stars Dance Academy Ribbon Cutting (3/4)

The Ports also made appearances throughout Stockton, Lodi, and Manteca as part of their 30 Days of Opening Day promotion, when Splash handed out tickets to Opening Night to lucky fans!

Donations:IMG_4264

During the month of March, 40 non-profit organizations received 4 Field Box ticket vouchers from the Ports to one 2016 Ports home game for a fundraising raffle or auction. Organizations donated to included:

  • Black Hat Foundation
  • Relay for Life
  • Stockton Symphony
  • Sutter Tracy Community Hospital
  • Veritas School PTA
  • Wicklund CDC
  • YMCA

Additionally, the Ports granted 11 Little Leagues and softball leagues with a $250 sponsorship, courtesy of the Stockton Ports Anchor Fund. Recipients included:

  • Amador County West
  • Brentwood Pony
  • Delta Little League
  • Eastern Little League
  • Galt Youth Baseball
  • Manteca Little League
  • Morada Little League
  • Stockton Pacific Little League
  • Sunrise Little League
  • Tracy Express Tracy Little League

Alumni Update: Catching up with Jason Windsor ’05

With Ports Alumni Night scheduled for May 7th, the team wanted to recognize a member of the 2005 team and first Banner Island Ballpark alumnus to make his MLB debut. Here’s what he had to say:

1. What is your favorite memory from your time on the Ports?

Fishing on the delta.

2. What accomplishments from your days with the Ports are you most proud of?

Being a part of a great team and organization.

IMG_1958

Windsor signing autographs for a young fan, as the Ports honored him with a commemorative t-shirt giveaway.

3. What favorite memory do you have about your teammates?

The ping pong tourneys we would have.

4. Who was the most memorable character from your Ports team?

Vic the clubby.

5. How involved were you and your teammates in the community?

When we had time.

6. What was your favorite ballpark in the Cal League to play in?

Stockton for sure.

7. Who was the toughest opponent you faced?

San Jose (in the Cal League)

 

8. During your time with Stockton, was there a Major League baseball player that you looked up to? Modeled your playing after?

Not at the time.

Since then…

9. Where do you currently reside?

Southern California

10. What major league team do you currently follow?

Angels

IMG_1867

Windsor and his son during pre-game ceremonies on May 1, 2015.

11. Spouse/children/grandkids

2 sons and wife

12. Did you ever make it back to Stockton after you were finished playing for the Ports?

Yes, recently

13. Have you followed the Ports at all since you were on the team?

Not really, no time

14. Do you keep in touch with any of your teammates? If so, whom?

Yes, Braden and Robrett

15. What are you doing now after baseball?

Handle N.A. sales organization

16. What has been your biggest success in your career following your time with Stockton?

Breaking into the MLB, graduating college with a Business degree.

17. If you could give any piece of advice to current Ports players, what would it be?

Educate yourself in something other than the sport. Never let yourself be content with where you are.

Alumni Update: Catching up with Douglas Norton

WebTo honor the 30th anniversary of the 1986 California League Champions Stockton Ports team, we got a chance to catch up with a member of the team, Douglas Norton, to reflect on the memorable year. Here’s what he had to say:

1. What is your favorite memory from your time on the Ports?

The guys and stories that were created.

2. What accomplishments from your days with the Ports are you most proud of?

Winning the Championship.

3. What favorite memory do you have about your teammates?

All the great stories that were created with the guys.  I used a lot of them in my professional life after ball.

4. How involved were you and your teammates in the community?

Very involved and enjoyed it!

5. What was your favorite ballpark in the Cal League to play in?

The old stadium [Billy Hebert];  it was a pitchers ballpark – nice!

6. Who was the toughest opponent you faced?

Myself.

7. What was Stockton like when you were with the Ports?

At the time it was a great venue that supported the team.

8. Have you followed the Ports at all since you were on the team?

No, once my career was over life needs to move on;  however I have some  great stories that I am illustrating in My book,  “The Rooster”.

9. What has been your biggest success in your career following your time with Stockton?

Becoming a partner in a software firm.

10. Do you keep in touch with any of your teammates? If so, whom?

Yes Jamie Brisco and Craig Henderson.

11. During your time with Stockton, was there a major league baseball player that you looked up to? Modeled your playing after?

Not really  – One needs to be one’s own man.

12. Were there any events at the time affect your team at all?

Not really; all we wanted was to play in the sandlot and make it to the next level.

13. What was the best part about winning the 1986 California League Championship?

Winning a championship  at any age or level of play is a memory one will cherish for a life time.  But the real benefit is all the stories and life lessons one learns between the lines!

14. If you could give any piece of advice to current Ports players, what would it be?

Life is too short and one needs to enjoy the moment, work diligently and pray to the Baseball Gods that you will have the opportunity to move up in the organization.

15. What major league team do you currently follow?

The Brewers!

16. Name a fun fact that most people don’t know about you?

They call me Rooster!

On Saturday, May 7, 2016, the Ports will be honoring the 1986 team at their annual Alumni Night. For more information, contact the Ports front office at 209-644-1900.

Get to Know the Ports Front Office: Christa Leri

Christa Leri: Office Manager

Bio-Christa-0314

1. What is your first baseball memory?

Tailgating in the parking lot with my family before entering a game and hearing the foghorn go off after a home run was hit at Candlestick Park.

2. If you were stuck on a deserted island, who would you want on the island with you?

Steph Curry.

3. If you could pick a super-power, what would it be? What would your name be?

I would either want to be able to teleport from place to place or read people’s minds.  However, I have no idea what I would want my name to be but I am open to suggestions.

4. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I love living in California but if I had to pick somewhere else to live, I would want to live in either Italy or Hawaii.

5. Do you have any hidden talents?

I have hidden my talents so well that I cannot find them.

6. If you had one million dollars, what are the first three things you would do with it?

I would pay for the rest of my schooling, travel the world and share the rest with my parents.

7. If you could trade places with one fictional character, who would it be?

I would want to be Gina from Brooklyn 99 or Jess from New Girl.

8. If you didn’t work in sports, what would you want to do?

I would want to be a preschool teacher.

9. What is the best concert you’ve ever been to?

I have been to two concerts that are tied for the number one spot on my list.  I loved seeing Justin Timberlake in concert and The Kick the Dust Up concert at Levi Stadium.  The artists in that concert included Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Thomas Rhett, Dustin Lynch and Randy Houser.

10. If you could take a road trip with any three people, who would it be?

Ellen DeGeneres, Jimmy Fallon and Shaq

11. If you could try out any job for a day, what would it be?

I would want to be a digital media production manager for the San Jose Sharks.

12. Who was your favorite singer/band of the 90’s?

There is a lot of great music from the 90’s but my top three choices were always NSYNC, Backstreet Boys and the Spice Girls.

13. What is your karaoke song?

I have never done karaoke before but if I did, I would probably choose “This is How We Do it” by Montell Jordan.

14. What was the last song to play on your iPod/phone?

“Rather Be” by Clean Bandit featuring Jess Glynne

15. If you were a professional athlete, what sport would you play?

I would probably want to be a swimmer or play volleyball.

February 2016 Community Recap

During the month of February, Splash and the Ports front office kept busy with visits in the local community.

Baseball by the Books:Rosa Parks

During the second month of the Ports’ Baseball by the Books reading program, Splash made visits to five schools for their kick-off assemblies. Schools included:

  • Monroe Elementary (2/1)
  • Aspire Port City (2/5)
  • Aspire Rosa Parks (2/19)
  • Harrison Elementary (2/24)
  • Oakwood Elementary (2/29)

Community Appearances:

In addition to Baseball by the Books, Splash attended various community events, while the Ports front office visited local schools to prepare for Dr. Seuss’ birthday! Community appearances included:

  • Glenbrooke by Del Webb (2/5) – Ports front office members and Splash visited the 55 and over community for an information session on the Ports’ SCAN Silver Sluggers program.
  • Joseph’s Medical Center’s Health Faire (2/10) – Splash visited the Ports’ Pink Night sponsor for their annual Health Faire, which provides information for the general public on various health programs.
  • Alexander’s Furniture Ribbon Cutting (2/13) – Front office members and Splash wanted to welcome the Ports’ newest sponsor to Stockton for the Chamber of Commerce’s Ribbon Cutting ceremony.
  • Families Reading Together (2/22) – Splash was invited to stop by the Cesar Chavez Library for Stockton Unified School District’s Families Reading Together event.
  • Great Valley Elementary and August Elementary’s Read Across America Day (2/25) – The front office stopped by both schools to read some of their favorite books to students to get ready for Read Across America week.
  • Merryhill Preschool’s Literacy Fair (2/27) – As part of Read Across America Week, Merryhill Preschool invited the front office to join them, where staff members had the chance to read to students and families.

Donations:

26 non-profit organizations received 4 Field Box ticket vouchers to one 2016 Ports home game for benefit fundraisers during the month of February. Organizations included but were not limited to:

  • Friends of the Calaveras LibraryIMG_4233
  • Heritage Performing Arts Boosters
  • Italian Catholic Federation
  • Lodi Swim Club
  • Port City Roller Girls
  • Relay for Life
  • Tracy Sunrise Little League

In March, make sure to keep an eye out for Splash in the community! With the Ports’ 30 Days of Opening Day in full-swing, the Ports will make appearances in Stockton and surrounding areas to give away tickets for Opening Night on Thursday, April 7th!

A Closer Look At The A’s Top Prospect, Fanklin Barreto

In 2013, it seemed destined that the Ports’ shortstop and current Chicago Cubs rookie Addison Russell would be the future middle infielder for the Oakland Athletics. After a midsummer trade in 2014 involving former Ports Billy McKinney, Dan Strailey, and Russell being traded to the Cubs for Jason Hammel and Jeff Samardzija, that outlook quickly changed.

After the trade, Daniel Robertson quickly took over the A’s number one overall prospect spot, a position he thrived on. Robertson finished the season hitting .310 with 15 home runs and 60 RBI and appeared to be the next shortstop of the future for the A’s.

The Athletics, however, had different plansRV3A7805. Once again another big
trade occurred that had A’s fans all over the country surprised. All-Star third baseman and former Stockton Ports star Josh Donaldson was dealt to the Blue Jays for four players including current Ports shortstop Franklin Barreto.

After the trade, Robertson was traded to the Tampa Bay Rays along with teammate and 2014 Port Boog Powell for Ben Zobrist and Yunel Escobar, making Barreto the next shortstop the A’s had big plans for.

At just 19 years old, Franklin Barreto was arguably the key piece to trading Josh Donaldson to the Toronto Blue Jays, a player deemed as “untouchable” around Oakland A’s inner circles.

At only 5’9″, Barreto was on international scouts’ radars before signing in July of 2012 with the Blue Jays organization at only 17 years old. In Barreto’s first full season of Minor League Baseball, the shortstop put up a slash line of .311/.384/.481 playing in the Northwest League for the Vancouver Canadians. In 328 plate appearances, Barreto also put up solid power numbers with a total of six home runs and 61 runs batted in.

Known as a natural hitter by scouts all around Major League Baseball, Barreto has a knack for getting on base and even complimented his high on base percentage with a total of 29 stolen bases in 2014.

Barreto has also proven to have a solid glove in the infield, with many executives believing he could serve his role as either a shortstop or a second baseman for the A’s. While many see the young star as a player with raw talent, Barreto is still very young with a possible MLB arrival by 2017.RV3A2211

His inexperience in professional baseball certainly showed at the beginning of the 2015 season. While Barreto at times was able to make amazing plays in the infield, the young prospect struggled to be consistent and committed unnecessary errors, which quickly changed as Barreto has continued to show improvement with his glove and was one of the Ports’ best infielders at the half-way point of the season. However, just as his fielding was progressing, a bruised wrist sidelined Barreto in late July and during the entire month of August.

Barreto’s bat was another piece to his game that was slow to come around this season as he spent most of the first month batting below .200. He turned this around in during the month of May when he had three-hit games and a two home run and 5 RBI night on May 18th against the Modesto Nuts. While Barreto ended the first half of the season batting .271, he excelled in the second half with an astounding .367, as he batted .444 following his return from the Disabled List in September.

With another season under his belt, the young infielder will be looking to stay healthy in 2016 and continue to work on his fundamentals as he may have a promotion to Double-A Midland where he can be an asset to the back-to-back Texas League Champions.

Ports All-Time Home Run Duo Looks to Lead Nashville in 2016

2015 was certainly an exciting ride for Ports fans. What started out as a team that struggled early on, ultimately ended with a thrilling run to the playoffs and a clinching of the second-half championship in the North Division with an overall record of 72-66.

As impressive as 2015 may have been, just the year before in 2014, the Ports had one of the best regular season teams in franchise history. Led by a plethora of top prospects, the Ports finished 85-55 and clinched a second-half championship as well. Although the result ended in a first round playoff loss, fans were treated all season long to impressive on-field play, including remarkable performances from stars Matt Olson and Renato Nunez.

Known as the “Bash Brothers 2.0”, Olson and Nunez led the power surge for the Ports that season and finished with a combined total of 66 home runs, the most in MiLB that season as well as all-time in the Ports’ record books. Olson finished just shy of the Ports’ all-time regular season home run record set by Chris Carter at 39, with two short at 37. Olson finished with 97 RBI that season as well as a total of 117 walks.

Nunez, on the other hand, got off IMG_2265to a bit of a slow start in the first half of the season but then turned it around and had one of the hottest second-halves in all of Minor League Baseball. By year’s end, Nunez finished with a .279 average to compliment his 29 home runs and 96 RBI.

For a lot of players in the A’s organization, making the transition from the hitter-friendly California League to the pitching-friendly Texas League can prove to be a difficult challenge. Olson and Nunez, however, proved otherwise.

For both players, their impact was certainly not as high as many would have expected in the early stages of the 2015 season playing for the Midland RockHounds. For a large part of the season, Olson could not seem to replicate the success he had in Stockton the year prior and was down in all areas. However, he continued to move forward and by season’s end, finished with 17 home runs, 75 RBI, and again surpassed 100 walks by finishing with 105, a feat that an organization like Oakland, continues to value in their players.

Olson continued to be a threat at theIMG_4526 plate all season long and fought through early inconsistencies to finish as one of the best offensive players on the squad.

Nunez had a much different path during the 2015 season with Midland. As opposed to Olson’s 133 games played in 2015, injuries early on in the season kept the Venezuelan born prospect out for several games and he ended up playing in just 93 total games. Nunez, however, was able to capitalize by putting up remarkable numbers.

During those 93 games, Nunez put up 18 home runs, 61 RBI and finished with a .278 batting average and continued to be a hot bat for the RockHounds during the playoffs.

The duo’s success they shared in Stockton ultimately carried over in Midland as the RockHounds finished as the 2015 Texas League Champions, their second title in as many years.

As both Olson and Nunez are almost certainly destined to begin 2016 with Triple-A Nashville, both players will be taking another big step towards reaching their final destination in Oakland.

With the A’s currently in a rebuilding mode and a look towards the future, both players certainly have a chance to not only make some noise at the Triple-A level, but the big league level as well next year.

November 2015 Community Relations Recap

El Concilio Food Basket Collection

The Ports front office is currently collecting food donations for El Concilio’s food basket collection. Members of the Ports front office, along with Splash, will be in attendance at the basket distribution on Saturday, December 19th.

CHiPs Toy Drive

The Ports are also collecting new, unwrapped toys for the CHP’s annual toy drive. Fans may drop off their donations at the ballpark for the distribution which will be held on Friday, December 18th.

Silver Sluggers

The Ports front office has two speaking engagements planned at retirement communities and local Lions clubs to further promote the program in December. IMG_3743

Baseball by the Books

The program will kick-off on January 13th for schools in San Joaquin County. In December, the Ports will announce the bookmark design contest winner.

Donation Requests

The Ports donated four Field Box ticket vouchers for the 2016 season to 18 local non-profit organizations for raffles, auctions, and door prizes.

Organizations who have received donations in October include but are not limited to: Boys and Girls Club of Manteca and Lathrop, District 8 Little League, Family Resource and Referral Center, Healings in Motion, Linden Athletic Boosters,  and Second Harvest Food Bank.

Community Involvement

11/7 – Go Foundation/United Way Bowling Tournamentimage1

The Ports purchased a lane for front office members to attend the event. Additionally, the Ports donated memorabilia and a suite as raffle items.

11/24 – Hospice of San Joaquin Tree Lighting at Delta College

Splash was a guest of honor at this year’s tree lighting in Stockton. The Po rts donated tickets to the child who was selected as this year’s program cover designer.

11/26 – Run & Walk Against Hunger at Banner Island Ballpark

In conjunction with the holiday, members of the Ports front office assisted with the yearly event, benefiting the Emergency Food Bank. Splash was also on-site to greet  the runners at the finish line.

Get to Know the Ports Front Office: Jessica Due

Jessica Due: Office ManagerBio-Jessica-1112

1. What is your first baseball memory?

My father was a catcher in a local league and I remember going to his games when I was a kid.

2. If you were stuck on a deserted island, who would you want on the island with you?

My family. They’re the best people in the world and we make each other laugh even when times are tough.

3. If you could pick a super-power, what would it be? What would your name be?

To fly. So I could travel everywhere fast and not have to worry about winding roads. I’d make my name Buffy, to honor my favorite super-heroine. It has nothing to do with flying, but that’s what my name would be anyway.

4. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I love California. I’ve lived here my whole life and I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. Living within such close proximity to the coast, the mountains, and big cities is fabulous.

5. Do you have any hidden talents?

I write poetry/lyrics. I’ve been writing since I was 10. I am also skilled in origami. Not really, but wouldn’t that be cool?

6. If you had one million dollars, what are the first three things you would do with it?

Pay off my debt, give to my family/friends, and give to animal shelters/women’s shelters.

7. If you could trade places with one fictional character, who would it be?

Ariel from The Little Mermaid.

8. If you didn’t work in sports, what would you want to do?

Be a professional actor.

9. What is the best concert you’ve ever been to?

That is a tough question since I’ve been to about 100 concerts in my life so far. I’d say at the top of the list is Bruno Mars. What an extraordinary performer!

10. If you could take a road trip with any three people, who would it be?

Sarah Michelle Gellar, Joss Whedon, and Neil Patrick Harris.

11. If you could try out any job for a day, what would it be?

Radio DJ.

12. Who was your favorite singer/band of the 90’s?

Oh boy, I’m going to have to say Hanson. “Mmmbop” is a classic. Yes, I still follow their music and yes, they are still writing and performing today and fabulous.

13. What is your karaoke song?

Honestly, I don’t karaoke. If I had to though, I’d say anything by Taylor Swift because her songs are just fun.

14. What was the last song to play on your iPod/phone?

“Sam Hall” by Johnny Cash.

15. If you were a professional athlete, what sport would you play?

Volleyball.

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