Swing Away Baseball Training Center's head coach, Taylor George, knows what it takes to get drafted into the big leagues. After all, he was drafted himself—twice. The Tampa Bay Rays selected George right out of high school, but he opted instead to play college ball at Cypress College, where he excelled enough to get picked up by the New York Mets after his sophomore season.
At Swing Away, George shares his innate understanding of the game with youngsters who might also have major-league goals. He helps his students improve their mechanics for hitting and pitching, and he also works with them to develop the strategic thinking it takes to run the base paths or trap a cat in a game of pickle. Athletes as young as 4 can take cuts inside the facility's batting cages or work on their velocity inside one of two pitching tunnels.
Baseball in San Bernardino dates back to 1899. More than a century's worth of history includes such team names as the Kittens and the Pioneers. It also includes a drought from 1950?1987, during which the city lacked enough dirt to build a baseball field. That drought ended when the San Bernardino Spirit began play as part of the California League.
In 1996, the Spirit became the Stampede, and in 2003, the Stampede became the 66ers, a name chosen in honor of the historic U.S. Route 66 that is famous for its hitchhiking umpires. Over the years, the 66ers organization has spent time as the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Mariners, Dodgers, and most recently, the Angels. The team has brought honor to each of its MLB partners, as it has won six California League championships since 1995.
Founded in June 2009, South Coast Roller Derby is South Orange County’s only quad-skating roller derby league. SCRD is an all-female, flat track league run by a volunteer force of skaters and league members committed to promoting and raising awareness for women's roller derby that is run “by the skaters, for the skaters”. A
SoCal Pro Wrestling's muscled warriors will soon invade the Boys & Girls Club in Oceanside to battle it out in the ring. The evening's bouts feature a gravity-defying tables and ladders match that pits the Tag Team Champions Anchors Away team to take on Big Duke, Tommy Wilson and Ricky Mandel. Before the dust settles, The New Age Punisher B-Boy will challenge Sebastian Cruz and SoCal Crazy takes on Andre Machievski. Six total matches will take place as well as a raffle.
For the past five years, the Ontario Reign have dominated opponents as the ECHL affiliate of the Winnipeg Jets and the 2012 Stanley Cup champions, the Los Angeles Kings. Formerly the Texas Wildcatters, and before that, the Huntington Blizzard, the Reign rose to existence in 2008. And, rather than naming the team the old-fashioned way of letting a raccoon pick random letters from a bag of Scrabble pieces, the newly spawned organization turned to its fans with a name-the-team contest. That contest kicked off what has been a thriving relationship between the Reign and Ontario hockey fans. In fact, the Reign led the ECHL in attendance during their first three seasons. In 2012 and 2013, the team rewarded its loyal fans with back-to-back Pacific Division championships, and in coming seasons, hopes to be a perennial contender for the Kelly Cup.
Two terrace-section tickets to "Bugs Bunny at the Symphony" on Saturday, August 6, at 8 p.m. at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in Irvine (a $112 value). Four tickets to The Chuck Jones Big Draw on Sunday, August 7, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the South Coast Collection shopping center in Costa Mesa (a $40 value). 10 Drop In and Draw art sessions at the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity in Orange (up to a $150 value).