Carson Wentz’s AO1 Foundation
Tonight Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz hosted his first annual softball game to support the AO1 Foundation. The night consisted of several fun events, culminating with the home run derby and the softball game. The game took place at Citizen’s Bank Park across the street from the Eagles usual home field.
Before the game, Wentz announced that he will be presenting a check for $520,000 to Mission of Hope: Haiti for an athletic center. Wentz matched the $260,000 he raised through donations to the AO1 Foundation. At the beginning of the event, the Eagles quarterback also addressed the crowd. He mentioned how when putting the event together, it was suggested to him to use a 10,000 seat venue. Although this would have made more sense, Wentz refused because he knew the Eagles fans would support. He was right. This is the most crowded I’ve seen Citizen’s Bank Park in a while, and definitely the loudest it’s been in years.
Before the festivities started, the team took some batting practice, showing off their baseball skills, or lack thereof. Corey Clement, Nate Sudfeld, and Dallas Goedert all showed promise, but Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles appeared to struggle. The Eagles top pick in this years’ draft, Goedert, also spent some time with fans signing autographs and taking pictures.
The home run derby
The first event was the home run derby, however, only some players participated. The derby included Clement, Rasul Douglas, Richard Rogers, Zach Ertz, Jalen Mills, Jake Elliott, Jason Kelce, Stefan Wisniewski, Sudfeld, Fletcher Cox, and Jeffrey Lurie. With each player allotted five outs, only Ertz, Rogers, Elliott, Kelce, Wisniewski, and Sudfeld could hit any home runs. And although other players showed promise, some looked downright unathletic. You’d also think that the Eagles owner wouldn’t be able to keep up with these young athletes. However, Lurie was much closer than Cox and actually looked more athletic than the pro bowl defensive lineman when taking part in the derby.
The top three scorers were Ertz with five home runs, Elliott with five, and Wisniewski with seven. With three outs alotted in the next round, Wisniewski earned the home run derby title with three home runs. Although Ertz appeared to have the hot hand at the beginning, the lineman prevailed.
The picks might surprise you
Next was time for the schoolyard pick to select the softball game teams. With his first pick, team captain Wentz selected Ertz. And with his first pick, team captain Jordan Hicks selected Elliott.
In the order they were picked, here were the final rosters:
A recap of the game
Team Hicks jumped out to an early lead through the first 1.5 innings, which caused Ertz to subsequently get frustrated with his teammates.
Whom ever is at the @AO1Foundation charity game currently… please motivate my teammates!! I can only do so much
— Zach Ertz (@ZERTZ_86) June 1, 2018
However, almost immediately after, Team Wentz notched five runs in the bottom of the second and held Team Hicks scoreless in the third, while tallying four more runs of their own. Team Wentz batted around the order scoring 10 runs in the fourth. Team Hicks tried to battle back, but the 10 run inning put them in too big of a deficit to overcome. Wentz’s team won the game with a score of 23-12.
The most impressive players were Wisniewski, Rogers, Elliott, Goedert, and also Sudfeld. Not only were these guys absolutely smashing the ball, but they showed some talent on the defensive side as well. It was a great night; The bell rang after every home run, the players appeared to have a good time, and it was fun and also entertaining from a fan perspective as well.
A good tradition that Wentz has started
One of the best things about this team is they feel like family to the fans. Also, it appears as if they feel like family to each other. Even players that weren’t participating in the game were here including Alshon Jeffery, Jason Peters, and Jay Ajayi. This shows a lot about Wentz as a person and also as a leader. Furthermore, this team supports each other and the majority of the players were in attendance tonight. However, those who were not present congratulated Wentz on social media.
Wentz has done a tremendous job with the AO1 Foundation and also with bringing his teammates and the city together. He’s precisely the kind of guy you want leading your team.
Unbelievable night tonight at the @ao1foundation charity softball game. The support from everybody was incredible and I can’t thank y’all enough! Already excited for round 2 next year! #AO1leaveyourmark pic.twitter.com/xOgxn0P5ex
— Carson Wentz (@cj_wentz) June 2, 2018
Featured Image provided by Jessica Towne