Sports News

Saturday’s Fan Fest To Include Allensworth, Haake and Taylor

GARY, IN 1-31-2011 – Time is running out to pick up your discount tickets to Fan Fest 2011 on Saturday, February 5, but the Gary SouthShore RailCats continue to add to the star-studded lineup of current and former RailCats coaches and players with Jermaine Allensworth, Steve Haake and Alex Taylor.

Discount Fan Fest presale tickets are on sale only through Friday at $15 for adults and $10 for 2011 season ticket holders and kids (age 12 and under).  Ticket prices will go up $5 at the door Saturday morning.  A ticket to Fan Fest not only includes hours of ballpark fun and the chance to meet and mingle with your favorite stars of past and present, it also comes with a ticket to Opening Day, Friday, May 20 at U. S. Steel Yard and a free commemorative poster and program (first 1,000 fans only). The first 500 adults and 300 kids will also pick up a free t-shirt as well

Allensworth, Haake and Taylor join a full slate of RailCats players and coaches, including two-time Northern League Manager of the Year Greg Tagert, hitting coaches Mick Curran and Kenny Graham, two-time Northern League Pitcher of the Year Willie Glen, 2008 Northern League Player of the Year Tanner Townsend and Tenth Anniversary Team finalists Eric Blakeley, Tony Cogan, Travis Kerber, Mike Rohde and Dan Soria. In addition, Fan Fest 2011 will be headlined by a pair of former major leaguers with Gary ties in New York Mets Pitcher and former RailCat Tim Byrdak and Gary Roosevelt High School graduate Wallace Johnson.

After spending parts of four seasons in the majors with the Pittsburgh Pirates, Kansas City Royals and New York Mets, Allensworth joined the independent ranks in 2004 before coming to the RailCats two years later. The Anderson, Ind. native had two great seasons in Gary leading the Northern League in stolen base percentage in 2006 and posting solid numbers across the board. The Purdue University graduate is the all-time best playoff hitter (.356) in RailCats history. A former first round draft choice of the Pirates, Allensworth collected 1,483 base hits over his 14-year professional career.

A member of both RailCats Championship teams, Haake spent seven seasons under Tagert including five with the RailCats (2005-09). Haake was named a Northern League All-Star twice (2008-09) and led the league in walks (65) in 2008. The RailCats career leader in doubles, triples, stolen bases and RBI, Haake is second in club history in games played (451) and was at his best in the playoffs, posting a .331 career postseason average with the RailCats.

Taylor joined Tagert in 2004 in the Frontier League and followed when Tagert took the managerial job with the RailCats the following season. Playing virtually every position for the ‘Cats, Taylor put together an impressive 2005 campaign posting a .295 batting average and helping the RailCats bring the Northern League Championship home to Northwest Indiana. Taylor was a standout at Division III powerhouse Chapman University where he was a key member of the 2003 national championship team.

For more information on Fan Fest 2011 or to buy tickets now, visit www.railcatsbaseball.com or call 219.882.2255 and talk to one of the RailCats ticket specialists. The Radisson Hotel is located at the intersection of I-65 and US-30 in Merrillville and is adjacent to the Star Plaza Theater, The Region’s foremost indoor entertainment venue.  For more information on the Radisson Hotel at Star Plaza, visit www.radisson.com/merrillvillein.