The Syracuse Chiefs are excited to announce former New York Yankees great, Ron Guidry, as the featured guest and speaker at the 57th Annual Hot Stove Dinner on Friday, January 20th at the Nicholas J. Pirro Convention Center at the Oncenter in downtown Syracuse. Parking is free for the event in the Oncenter parking garage.
"We met Ron Guidry this summer and are very excited to bring him back for all the baseball fans in our community," said Chiefs general manager, Jason Smorol. "Most of our fans did not get to see how engaging Ron is or hear the great stories he tells about his years with the Chiefs and Yankees. He is really going to make the event special with his fan-forward personality."
The 57th Annual Hot Stove Dinner is run by the Syracuse Chiefs Charitable Foundation. The proceeds from the dinner will benefit the Syracuse Challenger Baseball League, the RBI Baseball League and the entire District 8 Little League.
The event is from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, January 20th at the Oncenter. Tickets are $75 for adults, $35 for children and will include a full dinner, silent auction, music and featured guest speakers. VIP tickets are available for an extra $125 and this provides access to a private session with Ron Guidry to get an autograph and photo with the Yankees legend. The VIP session is limited to 150 guests.
In addition to Ron Guidry, Syracuse Chiefs field manager Billy Gardner, Jr. will be on hand to recap last year's team and to let fans know what to expect this season. Other guests from the Washington Nationals organization may be added closer to the event.
Ron Guidry had a short stint in the minors and pitched in Syracuse for parts of the 1975 and 1976 seasons. Guidry recorded a 0.68 ERA in 1976 in 22 games and was elected to the Syracuse Chiefs Baseball Wall of Fame in 2007.
After being promoted to the Major Leagues, Guidry went on to have a 14-year MLB career, all with the New York Yankees. Guidry, whose nicknames are "Gator" and "Louisiana Lightning" had a career record of 170-91. Throughout his career, he was a 4x All-Star, a 2x World Series Champion, a 5x Gold Glove winner and he won the AL Cy Young Award in 1978 with a record of 25-3 and an ERA of 1.74.
Billy Gardner, Jr. has managed the Chiefs for the past 3 seasons and was named International League Manager of the year in 2014, after he managed the team to an 81-62 record and the Chiefs first playoff appearance in 15 years.
The Challenger Baseball League of CNY is the largest special needs baseball league in the United States. Syracuse Challenger Baseball League has 18 teams and 280 players with physical handicaps and developmental delays. The purpose of the program is to allow everyone, regardless of their ability, to enjoy the game of baseball in a relaxed setting that is supervised by coaches and parents.
RBI Baseball is a Major-League Baseball initiative that's mission is to revive baseball in our inner cities. Created by John Young in 1989 in Los Angeles, the RBI Baseball program now serves more than 200 communities. This MLB initiative is designed to provide young people from underserved and diverse communities the opportunity to play baseball and softball.
District 8 Little League is comprised of 25 leagues from Cortland to Oswego and has over 10,000 kids participating in youth baseball.