North Carolina Central Sports Information
DURHAM, N.C. – Boston Red Sox historian Gordon Edes will be the special guest and Major League Baseball umpire Joe West will be the keynote speaker at the eighth annual North Carolina Central University First Pitch Dinner and Silent Auction on Saturday, Feb. 2, at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park in Durham, North Carolina.
The fundraising event to benefit the NCCU baseball program will begin with a meet-and-greet from 6:00-7:00 p.m., followed by a sit-down dinner. There will also be a silent auction with authentic autographed memorabilia, including many items from Baseball Hall of Fame inductees, as well as a raffle. Guests will also have the opportunity to meet members of the 2019 NCCU baseball team.
Edes is in his third year as the Boston Red Sox historian and strategic communication advisor after spending 43 years as a journalist with the Los Angeles Times, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the National Sports Daily, and the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel before returning home to Boston in 1996 to cover the Red Sox. He spent 12 years with the Boston Globe before becoming a national baseball writer for Yahoo Sports, and then covered the Red Sox for six years for ESPN.com before taking the position as historian for the Red Sox in November 2015.
West has been a Major League umpire for 32 years after working his first MLB game in 1976 at age 23. Last season West umpired his 5,164th major-league game to move him into second all-time among umpires. He is ninth all-time with 88 postseason games worked, and currently serves as the president of the World Umpires Association. West is also a North Carolina native, born in Asheville, and was a three-year starting quarterback at Elon, where he led his club to three Carolinas Conference Championships.
For the eighth straight year, local radio legend, avid baseball fan, and Durham Bulls public address announcer Tony Riggsbee will be the emcee for the evening.
Individual tickets for the sit-down dinner and silent auction are $75.
A VIP Table Sponsor package is also available, including eight tickets for the sit-down dinner, as well as program recognition, eight complimentary raffle tickets, public address announcements at NCCU home baseball games, signage space availability at the Durham Athletic Park for NCCU home baseball games – all for $1,500.