Troy residents welcome Opening Day

Published 2:35 pm Saturday, March 27, 2010

The biggest day in Troy Parks and Recreation’s sports year took place on Saturday, as the baseball and softball seasons got underway at the Troy Sportsplex.

“It was a beautiful day,” Parks and Recreation director Dan Smith said.

“This is out favorite time of the year. We are proud of all of our leagues, but there is just something about the spring, baseball and softball and Opening Day.

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“Today is a very special tradition in Troy and I think all of the seasons got off to a great start,” Smith added.

There were 54 different teams playing in the sunshine across the different diamonds as

20 baseball games from T-Ball to Dixie Youth leagues took the field.

But as those games were going on, 14 softball teams were also getting their seasons in all three of the different leagues.

At any given time, four games were going on – something that can be a bit hectic for families that have more than one player.

Vicki and Jimmy Robinson were one of those families.

The Robinsons had two children playing on Saturday, Addy, who was playing softball for the Tigers and Payton, who was playing for the Braves in the Dixie-Minors.

“It’s been a long day,” Mrs. Robinson said with a laugh. “But it’s still a lot of fun.”

The Robinsons had been at the Sportsplex from 8:30 a.m. until around 1 p.m.

“Coming out here is a good way to socialize, have some family time and also get some exercise – for all of us,” she said.

Mr. Robinson added that it is always fun to watch the kids play and have fun.

“That’s what it’s all about,” he said. “It’s been a good day.”

While the Robinsons were watching Payton and his Braves comes from behind to tie its game against the Phillies, Billy Little was watching his son, Tate Knighten and the Nationals in a Farm League game against the Diamondbacks.

“We are all having a good time,” Little said.

“It is a lot of fun to come out here and watch the youngins play ball – and I know Tate is having a great time (on the field) as well.”

Parents weren’t the only ones supporting and celebrating the day however.

Lillie May was out cheering for he nephew, Wynton Brundidge, during his T-Ball game against the Red Sox.

“(Coming to the games) is a great way for everyone to spend time with each other,” she said.

“Plus, I am having a great time watching these kids have a great time,” May added.

Across the street from the baseball games, softball was in full swing.

On every opening day, there are always going to be some first timers on the field.

Crush head coach Larry Sanders was one of them.

“This is the first year I have coached softball. My daughter (Molly Kate Sanders) asked me to do it and I said yea,” he laughed.

The Crush is made up of mostly nine-year-olds but that doesn’t mean the team isn’t ready to play.

“They are all anxious to get out on the field,” Sanders said.

“It’s a great time of the year. We have practiced hard leading into the games, so hopefully we have a good season.”

Before becoming a softball coach, Sanders was a baseball coach and when asked what the biggest difference between coaching the two, he had an easy answer.

“It’s a lot more relaxing,” he said with a smile.

For pictures of all the teams from Opening Ceremonies and well as team action from Saturday, check