For Immediate Release:
Contact: Jim Weyermann
Golden Baseball League Signs Rickey Henderson
Man of Steal returns to the West Coast to lead the San Diego Surf Dawgs
SAN DIEGO, CALIF May 9, 2005: The Golden Baseball League announced today that former major league all star and MLB all time stolen base leader, Rickey Henderson, known to many as "the Man of Steal", has reached an agreement to play the 2005 season with the San Diego Surf Dawgs. "The GBL brand of baseball will be characterized as a combination of speed, power, endurance and heart," said Kevin Outcalt, GBL Commissioner. "Rickey brings a unique mix of these attributes to the Surf Dawgs and our league. His passion for the game is shared by our fans and his many on-field accomplishments set a standard for our younger players."
Henderson, a future Hall of Famer, reports today to Spring Training with the Surf Dawgs in Mesa, Arizona. He is one of eight former Major Leaguers joining 150+ players with professional experience on the GBL rosters.
"Rickey always plays with an intensity that represents his passion for the game," said Terry Kennedy, Surf Dawgs Manager and four-time Major League All Star. "He expects the best out of himself and his teammates every time he steps on the field. This orientation to the game will shape the competitive nature of our team and challenge us to leave it all out on the field, every game."
"I wanted to be apart of something special and contributing to the launch of a new league was very exciting to me," said Rickey Henderson. "I love playing this game and every spring training feels like the first, I am ready to go. Terry Kennedy's wide open style of play works for me and I think my talents will fit in well. Let's get this started."
This will be Henderson's 30th season in professional baseball since he was first drafted in the 4th round out of high school in 1976. Twenty-one of those seasons have been playing for West Coast teams. His record setting career achievements are well known during his 25 year major league career that has included 10 selections to the All Star team and playing in two World Series championships with the Oakland A's and Toronto Blue Jays. He is a favorite by San Diego sports fans, having played three seasons for the San Diego Padres in the past decade (1996, 1997 and 2001) that included playing on the 1996 National League West Champions.
The San Diego Surf Dawgs begin spring training on May 9, 2005 in Mesa Arizona and the team's home opener is scheduled for May 26th, 2005 against the Long Beach Armanda.
About the Golden Baseball League
The Golden Baseball League, Presented by Safeway Inc. /VONS, is a professional baseball league operating under a single-entity ownership model, with the League owning all the individual teams. Charter Golden Baseball League teams include the Chico Outlaws in Chico; CA, the Fullerton Flyers in Fullerton; CA, the Long Beach Armada in Long Beach; CA, the San Diego Surf Dawgs in San Diego; CA, the Mesa Miners in Mesa; AZ, the Surprise Fightin' Falcons in Surprise; AZ, the Yuma Scorpions in Yuma; AZ and the Japan Samurai Bears which will be the traveling team. The season will consist of 90 games per team and will begin late May and end in early September. Each team will have a 24-player roster.
For general information, please visit our League web site at www.goldenbaseball.com or for the Surf Dawgs visit www.sdsurfdawgs.com or call (619) 282-HITS (4487).
Safeway Inc. is a Fortune 50 company and one of the largest food and drug retailers in North America based on sales. The company operates more than 1,800 stores in the United States and Canada and had annual sales of $35.6 billion in 2003. The company's common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol SWY.