Baltimore Orioles Spring Training Report 2-17-19

New Orioles GM Mike Elias talks about the Sarasota Spring Training Facility and his new Manager Brandon Hyde

Baltimore Orioles Announce Sarasota Spring Training Opening Day Schedule and Promotions

(Sarasota, FL) The Baltimore Orioles have announced plans for Opening Day of the 2019 Spring Training season on Saturday, February 23, when the Orioles host the Minnesota Twins at 1:05 p.m. ET at Ed Smith Stadium. The game launches an historic season in which the Orioles will reach the milestone of one million fans attending Orioles Spring Training games in Sarasota.

Within the first three games, the Orioles will celebrate the “One Millionth Fan” to attend an Orioles Spring Training game in Sarasota. The ballclub will select one fan at random on the day the milestone is reached to represent the one million fans. The Orioles “One Millionth Fan” will receive a $5,000 shopping experience at Diamond Vault in Sarasota, two Spring Training season tickets for five years, and more.

Following long-standing tradition, all fans in attendance on Opening Day will receive a 2019 Spring Training schedule magnet, presented by Visit Sarasota. Additionally, the first 1,000 female fans (ages 15 and over) in attendance will receive a Birds of Paradise flower, courtesy of Beneva Flowers.

On Opening Day, the Orioles will highlight the Orioles Health & Fitness Challenge, a partnership with Sarasota County Schools that teaches middle school students to “eat, train, and live like the pros” by focusing on the importance of healthy eating, tobacco-free living, and physical fitness. Sarasota Middle School’s Joyful Voices Honor Students will perform the national anthem before the game and “America the Beautiful” prior to the seventh-inning stretch. Hundreds of Fitness Challenge participants and their family members are expected to attend the game, and selected students who participated in the Challenge will take the field with the Orioles for the national anthem.

The Orioles will continue their popular Birdland Community Heroes program at every weekend home game this spring by recognizing local community heroes who inspire us through their spirited commitment to extend a hand in charity, service, hope, and harmony. These heroes will be recognized during a ceremony at the conclusion of the fifth inning, with Lynn Bonnett receiving the honor posthumously at the spring opener. Bonnett was a dedicated community volunteer supporting the Sarasota YMCA and Sarasota High School baseball. He helped establish the long-running Sarasota Baseball Classic and facilitated many other youth tournaments in Sarasota County. He also coordinated parking at Ed Smith Stadium for many years to benefit the Sarasota YMCA.

Fans can enjoy fun activities, special events, and giveaways all season long. Every Sunday home game, Applebee’s presents “Kids Run the Bases”, when fans ages 4 to 14 will be invited to run the bases after the game. On February 26 and March 5, fans ages 60 and over will be invited onto the field for “Seniors Run the Bases”.

On March 14, the Orioles will celebrate Heroes Day, featuring a demonstration by the U.S. Special Operations Command Parachute Team, “The Para-Commandos,” presented by Cheney Brothers.

On March 17, Go Green Day, the first 3,000 fans (ages 15 and over) will receive a “Go Green” tote bag, courtesy of MLB Network. Orioles players will wear specially designed green caps that will be autographed, authenticated, and auctioned online to benefit conservation education programs at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens in Sarasota.

On March 19, the first 3,000 fans (ages 15 and over) will receive an Orioles pashmina scarf. On March 23, dazzling fireworks will light up the night sky after the game as the Herald-Tribune presents Fireworks Night.

Youth Baseball Day presented by Sun-N-Fun Resort will be March 24. Pre-registered youth teams will parade around the outfield. The first 4,000 fans (ages 15 and over) will receive a Trey Mancini bobblehead.

Throughout the season, ballpark gates will open two hours prior to the scheduled first pitch. Season plan members will be able to access the ballpark 20 minutes early through a dedicated entrance at the Home Plate Gate for all 17 home games, including Opening Day.

OPENING DAY TIMING (GATES OPEN AT 11:05 a.m.; 10:45 a.m. for season plan members)
10:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Orioles Batting Practice
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Twins Batting Practice
1:05 p.m.
Play ball!

Tickets for the Orioles Spring Training home opener are still available and can be purchased at the ticket box office at Ed Smith Stadium from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET., online at, or by phone at 800-745-3000.

Orioles Pitcher Alex Cobb Enthused About Getting Ready for the 2019 Season

“Book Talk” guest Julie Bogart author “The Brave Learner: Finding Everyday Magic in Homeschool, Learning and Life”

UCF Defeats USF 78-65 in Orlando Ending Bulls 5 Game Winning Streak

(Orlando, FL) Tacko Fall scored 21 points and grabbed nine rebounds and UCF snapped USF’s five-game winning streak with a 78-65 victory Wednesday evening at CFE Arena.

David Collins scored 20 points for his fourth consecutive game with at least 20 points. Justin Brown added 12 points and made three 3-pointers, and Laquincy Rideau finished with 10 points, five assist and five steals.

UCF (18-5, 8-3) scored the first 13 points of the game and held USF without a field goal until the 14:26 mark of the first half when T.J. Lang hit a three-pointer to cut the Knights’ lead to 13-4.

B.J. Taylor gave UCF its largest lead of the first half with two free throws at the 3:37 mark to put the Knights ahead 33-14. A basket from Alexis Yetna and a three-pointer by Brown in the final two minutes pulled USF within 10 points, 35-25, with 59 seconds before halftime. Yetna had a game-high 12 rebounds in his return from a two-game absence due to injury.

UCF used one free throw and a three-pointer from Terrell Allen at the buzzer to push its lead back to 14 at halftime. The Bulls shot just 28.6 percent from the field and 18.2 percent from three-point range in the first half.

UCF lead by as much as 26 points in the second half and shot 61.1 percent from the field in the final 20 minutes. USF closed the game on an 8-1 run to trim the margin to 13 points.

The Bulls continue league play Saturday at 6 p.m. when the Bulls host Temple on ESPNU at the Yuengling Center.

Orioles Pitcher Dylan Bundy talks about getting ready in Spring Training in Sarasota, FL

“Book Talk” guest Julie Schwartz Gottman co-author “Eight Dates: Essential Conversations For a Lifetime of Love”

New Orioles Manager Brandon Hyde on Getting Ready for Spring Training in Sarasota

39th Annual Sarasota Jazz Festival Returns March 3 through 9th

(Sarasota, FL) The 39th Annual Sarasota Jazz Festival returns from March 3 through 9 with over 120 performers and 48 jazz related activities.

The schedule this year features five styles of live jazz (straight ahead, blues, Latin, classic and contemporary), a movie starring Dexter Gordon, and a new play with music about Louis Armstrong and Lil Hardin Armstrong, the wife who helped make him a star. In keeping with the theme “Generations of Jazz,” artistic director Ken Peplowski teams established musicians with rising stars, to create never-before-heard combinations of talent.

Sarasota’s Hyatt Regency Hotel is the festival’s home venue this year. Thirteen other venues are also participating during the week.

The festival has grown exponentially, from seven events in 2018 to 48 this year. “We’re bringing more jazz, and more styles of jazz, to more places,” said Jazz Club president Ed Linehan. Besides the Hyatt, other festival locations in Sarasota include Phillippi Estate Park, 5500 S. Tamiami Trail; Burns Court Cinema, 506 Burns Lane; St. Paul Lutheran Church, 2256 Bahia Vista Street and ten area clubs participating in the pub crawl by trolley.

On his return engagement as music director, Peplowski has assembled nationally and internationally prominent musicians for “Generations of Jazz,” teaming established performers with rising stars: Dick Hyman, Bill Charlap, Shelly Berg (piano); Randy Brecker, Randy Sandke, Jjames Suggs (trumpet); Houston Person, Roxy Coss, Aaron Johnson (saxophone); John Lamb (bass) and Mary Stallings and Charles Turner (vocals).

In addition to the mainstage performances, this year the Jazz Club introduces afternoon concerts on Friday and Saturday featuring four bands playing concurrently on four themed stages, allowing festival-goers to move among them.

Admission to Sarasota Jazz Festival events ranges from free to a peak of $55 for single tickets, with discounts for Jazz Club members and buyers of combination tickets. Packages including hotel and other VIP offers provide admission to private musician meet-and-greets and preferred seating at some events. The Sarasota Jazz Festival website offers a one-stop approach for information and tickets at

Interviews: Sports, News, Authors, Celebrities, Politics