by David Rhode
It’s February 24th, my dad’s birthday. I’m probably like most guys who developed their passion for sports through their dad. I lost my dad in 1993, but I think of him often and especially when watching sports. My brother and I have made many a late night visit to “see” dad after a big Phillies or Eagles win. I cried in 2008 when the Phillies won the World Series and partly because I knew how much it would have meant to him.
My dad loved all sports, but loved baseball the most. My brother and I played a lot of games with my dad as “steady pitcher”. He only occasionally broke out his curve ball and usually with bad results. He loved watching us play and loved taking us to games. We saw lots of bad teams here in Philadelphia, but got to share the Phillies 1980 World Series championship.
My dad would have loved Pitch In For Baseball. Giving kids in inner cities or in far away places the chance to play baseball would have brought him back to his youth playing with anything that resembled a ball or a glove.
My dad gave me my entrepreneurial spirit and without it I wouldn’t have had the courage or confidence to start the organization. In many ways he deserves the real credit for the organization’s success.
So happy birthday to Dan Rhode. We’ll throw an extra candle next to the Shabbat candles tonight.