February 7, 2011

Meet Hall of Famer Phil Niekro at Softball on April 9th

DAHLONEGA, GA – Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Phil Niekro is set to make an appearance this spring at North Georgia College & State University as the knuckleball legend will throw out first pitches at the baseball and softball games on April 9, 2011.

In conjunction with Parent-Alumni weekend at North Georgia College & State University, Phil Niekro will spend the day at the baseball and softball fields as a pair of Peach Belt Conference doubleheaders are slated for Saturday afternoon.

Niekro will throw at the first pitch at Bob Stein Stadium for baseball's 1:00 p.m. doubleheader against Francis Marion, and then will head down to Haines & Carolyn Hill Stadium and toss out the first pitch for the 3:00 p.m. softball doubleheader against Armstrong Atlantic.

He will also be available for an autograph session at the baseball and softball complex from 2:00-2:30 p.m., so come out for two crucial Peach Belt Conference doubleheaders and meet one of the greatest legends in the history Major League Baseball.

During a 24-year career, Phil Niekro relied not on velocity but on a fluttering knuckleball to frustrate Major League hitters. His lifetime record of 318-274 propelled him into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame in 1997

Knucksie twice led the National League in wins and propelled the Atlanta Braves to the National League West title in 1969, when he recorded 23 victories, 21 complete games and a 2.57 ERA. A five-time All-Star, he no-hit the Padres on Aug. 5, 1973, and recorded 3,342 strikeouts for his career.

A five-time Gold Glover Award winner, Niekro won 121 games after the age of 40, and had a lifetime earned run average of 3.35, playing in 864 games for four different organizations. He spent 21 seasons as a member of the Atlanta Braves organization, before playing for the New York Yankees, Cleveland Indians, and Toronto Blue Jays.