American Legion prepares for Mid-South Regional Baseball Tournament
Published 8:09 am Thursday, July 7, 2022
By MICHELLE LOVE | Staff Writer
PELHAM –The Alabama American Legion will host the 2022 Mid-South Regional Baseball Tournament at Pelham High School on Aug. 2-7.
Seven teams will participate in the tournament, which will take place at Bobby Hayes Stadium. The open ceremony will take place Aug. 2 at 7 p.m., and it involves Legion Riders, active-duty military, first responders, fly-over and a Parade of Flags ceremony. Games will begin at 10 a.m. Aug 3-6. The final championship game will start at 2 p.m. on Aug. 7. Each game will have an opening prayer and a presentation of the National Anthem.
The tournament will feature players under the age of 19 from seven Mid-South Region American Legion championship teams which include Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma and the Post 555 team from Shelby County. The Regional winner will advance to the American Legion World Series at Keeter Stadium in Shelby, NC from Aug. 11-16.
This marks a major milestone for the Legion in that it will be the second consecutive year for them to host the tournament.
This year, the Legion is aiming to provide a “Freedom Chair,” which is an all-terrain 6×6 wheelchair, to a disabled veteran.
Alan Philips, the assistant director of Alabama American Legion Baseball, said the tournament is just one of the ways the Legion tries to bring the community together to honor those who have fought for our country.
“We’ve done our best to be good stewards of all the men and women that we work with and as we honor them with how we play the game,” he said. “We try to honor the men and women who have fought for freedom, and we felt [the chair] was a great way to give a disabled veteran a semblance of the freedom that they fought for for us.”
At its meeting on Tuesday, July 5, the city of Pelham signed a service agreement with the American Legion to provide funding of $3,000 for the tournament, along with services from the Pelham Police, Fire and Public Works departments.
“We are hopeful that the community will come out to support us playing baseball and honoring our God and country.”
Applications for the Freedom Chair are due by Friday, July 15. The application is available at Alabamaamericanlegionbaseball.com, and the chair will be presented to the chosen winner at the closing ceremony on Sunday, Aug. 7.