With Hall of Famer Eddie Murray on hand, the Charlotte Knights (Class AAA; International League) will pay tribute to the 1976 Charlotte O’s. The reunion at BB&T Ballpark is set for September 4.
In all, 17 former Charlotte O’s players, along with former manager Jim Schaffer, will be on hand for the celebration. A highlight of the evening will take place on the pitcher’s mound as Murray will throw out the ceremonial first pitch to Schaffer, his 1976 Charlotte O’s manager, just before first pitch of the 7:05 p.m. game against the Gwinnett Braves.
As part of Sunday’s festivities, the Knights will also commemorate the 85th Anniversary of Jim Crockett Promotions, thanks to the help of the Crockett Foundation. Appearing on behalf of the Crockett Foundation to be honored on field before the game will be the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express (Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson), fan-favorite referee Tommy Young, and “The Perfect 10” Baby Doll.
The Knights will also honor the legacy of the Crockett family in a pre-game on-field ceremony featuring Frances (shown above), Jim Jr., David, and Jackie Crockett. The current “Voice of the Gwinnett Braves” Tony Schiavone, a Charlotte O’s broadcaster and announcer for Jim Crockett Promotions, will also be on hand for the event. Former Charlotte O’s shortstop Cat Whitfield will perform the National Anthem on his electric guitar before the game.
Gates will open at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, September 4th and the first 3,000 fans through the gates will receive a two-sided commemorative poster highlighting the players and professional wrestling personalities appearing at BB&T Ballpark on Sunday. Fans will have a chance to obtain free autographs from the former O’s players on Sunday with a special autograph session taking place from 6:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on the BB&T Ballpark concourse. Please note: Eddie Murray and the professional wrestling personalities appearing will not be signing autographs on the concourse.
The former Charlotte O’s players appearing at BB&T Ballpark and signing autographs on the concourse will be: John Buffamoyer, Kurt Beamsderfer, Kenny Dixon, Jeff Doerr, Buddy Flesh, John Flinn, Tim Graven, Rick Mayo, Scott Murphy, Victor Rodriguez, Jeff Schaefer, Nate Snell, John Stefero, Sammy Stewart, Vern Thomas, and Cat Whitfield.
Image courtesy Charlotte Observer.