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Escalon Youngsters Ready To Play Ball
Members of the Escalon American Legion colorguard make their way off the field with singer Marisol Diaz-Morales, left, after the National Anthem on Saturday morning at Hogan Field. - photo by Marg Jackson/The Times


Sunny skies and a brisk breeze – not to mention a malfunctioning microphone – greeted the crowd that gathered at Escalon’s Hogan Field adjacent to the community center on Saturday morning for the ‘opening day’ of Babe Ruth action.

Nearly three dozen teams were able to parade in to the field, with banners and wearing their brightly colored uniforms, with Escalon City Councilman Robert Swift providing introductions. He had to shout the team names, managers and sponsors, with no microphone to help make the task easier.

This year’s line-up includes 10 T-ball teams, five Rookie Girls, five Rookie Boys, three Minor Girls, three Minor Boys, two Major Girls and four Major Boys teams, a total of 32 teams. Sponsors range from Escalon United Methodist Church to Wright’s Petroleum, Bava Family Farms Olive Oil to Pizza Plus and the names include several drawn from the Major Leagues (Giants, A’s and more) to the Thunder, Pink Sox and Grizzlies.

Escalon American Legion Gustafson Thompson Post presented the colors and Marisol Diaz-Morales performed the National Anthem. Then it was the first pitch, from Miss Escalon Alexis Fisher to Major Girls catcher Grace Fitzgerald of the Thunder. With the formalities complete, teams hit the fields for a full day of ball, with games continuing each Saturday for the next several weeks.