Xtreme Baseball to debut in Sanford
Exciting concept comes to Historic Sanford Memorial Stadium May 5
SANFORD — Sanford has been the site of many important baseball events over the years with national importance.
The longest baseball game in history, at the time, was played here with the legendary Buddy Lake pitching the entire game and hitting a home run for the only score.
Jackie Robinson made his professional baseball debut here, albeit a short one, despite reports to the contrary about Daytona Beach.
Players like Juan Marichal, Felipe and Matty Alou, and Willie McCovey played some of their first professional games here.
Willie Mays was playing here when New York Giants Manager Leo Durocher made a trip down to watch him play for the first time and decided to promote him to the big leagues.
The Florida Collegiate Summer League made its debut here.
And that’s just to name a few.
Now comes word that Sanford will again be the center of world attention when an exciting new concept in professional sports makes its World Premier at Historic Sanford Memorial Stadium.
On Saturday, May 5, the National Xtreme Baseball League will make its launch with an exhibition game between the Orlando Dragons and the Miami Pythons.
The rules of the game are definitely different and will take some getting used to, but it also looks like the game will be very fast-paced and should be a lot of fun for the players as well as the fans.
Xtreme Baseball is a patent pending game that was created in 2006. This game/sport is being introduced to the public through a series of exhibition games between teams established throughout Florida as well as in other US regions and marketed as a new up and coming professional sports league.
The goal of the 2007 season is to educate the public about the game and rules along with generating the interest of fans for the 2008 Inaugural Season.
In 2008, the NXBL projects to have teams in 20-to-30 major US cities. The long-term goal of the NXBL is to have World-Wide recognition of the sport, full television coverage in the United States, and team ownership in major cities who will compete on a Regional and National level.
Xtreme Baseball uses many traditional rules of baseball which keeps the format of the game safe to play and well organized.
What makes it “Xtreme”?
The game is played with both teams on the field at the same time, two pitcher’s mounds, two home plates, ... The base lines are six feet apart, creating a double-diamond effect. This game is very fast-paced and the players must be in top physical condition.
Here is a little more explanation of the basic rules.
An inning starts like any other baseball game with the pitcher on the right side of the field, called the WEID SIDE, throwing to the batter on the same side. The batter attempts to hit the ball and if he does he then runs the traditional way (counter-clockwise) around the bases.
After the Weid Side pitcher throws a pitch and any subsequent play is over, the pitcher on the left side of the field (third base dugout), called the FLIP SIDE, throws to the batter on that side. If the batter hits the ball he then runs the field in clockwise direction (opposite of the traditional direction).
The pitchers continue alternating pitches until the inning is over.
The fielding (defensive) players for both teams are on the field at the same time.
When their team pitches the ball they are in LIVE MODE. If the ball is hit to them they field the ball to the WEID SIDE bases or the Flip Side bases depending on what side they are fielding.
As soon as the play is over the other team pitches and are placed in LIVE MODE.
As in traditional baseball, there are three outs per side, per inning.
The defensive team that gets three outs first leaves the field and continues offensively until the opposing defensive team makes three outs. When each team makes three outs the inning is over.
After each inning the teams switch sides, the Weid Side team becoming the Flip Side team and vice-versa.
More of the rules and strategy will be explained prior to the game on May 5.
The game was created by Phil Weidner who has played baseball for over 30 years. His first live experience of watching baseball came at the age of three while watching his dad play semi pro ball in his hometown of Alexandria, Virginia.
After his family relocated to Ormond Beach he followed in the tradition of most boys his age by playing youth league baseball. From that time forward he has been hooked on the game. The love of the sport as a child soon became his dream to someday become a professional baseball player.
He continued playing baseball up to the age of 16 through the city recreation department and also tried out each year for his high school team.
Ten years later he started playing again in a local men’s amateur baseball league through 2004. He now continues his involvement in the sport by introducing Xtreme Baseball to new players and fans.
His main motivation for creating the game was to even the playing field for left-handers. With this new format left-handers can now legitimately play the same positions as right-handers.
The fun begins on May 5 with a Pre-Game Party and Festivities, featuring the Hooters Girls, starting at 4 p.m. at Historic Sanford Memorial Stadium.
Game time is set for 7 p.m.
Game tickets are being sold through: Ticket Alternative at 877-725-8849 or on the internet at www.ticketalternative.com with children 12-and-Under free if accompanied by a parent or guardian.
There will also be three exhibition games played at Tinker Field in Orlando on May 26, June 16 and July 28 with more dates expected to be added later.
The league is planning on playing its inaugural season in 2008 with 29 teams in four different divisions all over the United States and is looking to expand to other countries in 2009.
For more information visit the National Xtreme Baseball League website at www.n-xbl.com.