Norworth to be honored Sunday

When festivities for the 2010 Major League Baseball All-Star Game in Anaheim get underway this weekend, Laguna Beach Little League and the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach will be a part of the fanfare.

On Sunday, several members from Laguna Beach Little League, including President Jennifer Sweet, will be on hand for a dedication honoring the late Jack Norworth. The former Laguna Beach resident, who died in 1959, penned the America's Pastime classic, "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" in 1908. Norworth, who is buried outside of Angel Stadium at Melrose Abbey Memorial Park, will be honored with the unveiling of a new monument at his gravesite beginning at 10 a.m. Former Major League pitcher Rollie Fingers will deliver remarks at the dedication.

Sweet said she will "show off" the Jack Norworth Trophy that Laguna Beach Little League hands down each year to the regular-season winner in the Majors division. She said it is the original trophy that the Cracker Jack Co. presented to Norworth and the league in 1958, a year before Norworth's death.

Fantasy Designs won this year's Majors title. A list of previous year's Majors winners are engraved on the perpetural trophy.

"Jack Norworth lived in Laguna Beach and brought the idea of Little League from the east coast to the city," Sweet said. "He had a vision to bring baseball to the youth in our city and started Laguna Beach Little League in 1952. He was the honorary president until his death in 1959.

"Jack Norworth is a big part our Laguna Beach Little League history and I am proud to be a part of it. Thanks to the vision of Jack and others, Laguna Beach Little League is 58 years strong."

At 10 a.m. Monday, members of the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach will take part in the Boys & Girls Club Baseball Clinic and T-Ball Home Run Derby hosted by State Farm. Major League Baseball Hall of Fame member Cal Ripken Jr. and U.S. Olympic softball gold medalist Jennie Finch will conduct a baseball hitting clinic for Orange County area Boys & Girls Clubs.

The T-Ball Home Run Derby will follow the clinic with Ripken Jr. and Finch giving batting tips to youngsters in the derby. Three rounds of competition will determine the derby winner. Both the Baseball Clinic and T-Ball Home Run Derby will be held at the Major League Baseball Sponsor Zone located in the parking lot on the west side of Angel Stadium.

The Gatorade All-Star Workout Day and All-Star Home Run Derby will be held inside Angel Stadium at 5 p.m. Monday.

The 81st Major League All-Star Game is 5 p.m. Tuesday at Angel Stadium.

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