Following the success of Pete Rose and Paul O’Neil both making guest appearances as “guest managers” last year, the Bridgeport Bluefish announced on Friday, April 1, 2016, that fastpitch softball legend Jennie Finch will guest manage the team on Sunday, May 29 when the ’Fish host the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs. Finch will assist the team in the dugout for the entire game and throw out the ceremonial first pitch. She will also participate in a pregame meet-and-greet with fans.
Finch starred for the University of Arizona from 1999 to 2002, where she was a three-time All-American, won 109 games, and led the Wildcats team to the NCAA national championship in 2001 in her junior season, in which she fashioned a 32-0 record. Finch finished her collegiate career with eight no-hitters, and was the Wildcats’ all-time leader strikeouts, shutouts, and innings pitched. In addition to her success in the pitching circle, Finch, who also played first base, and finished on Arizona’s all-time top-10 list in home runs and RBIs, owned a fastball that was the baseball equivalent of 98 miles per hour, and once struck out Albert Pujols, Brian Giles and Mike Piazza in succession at the 2004 Pepsi All-Star Softball Game. Time magazine called her “the most famous softball player in history.”
After her college career, Finch competed in the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens and Beijing in 2004 and 2008 respectively, as a member of Team USA, which earned a gold medal in 2004 and a silver in 2009. She also played five seasons for the Chicago Bandits, where she was the face of National Pro Fastpitch. Finch threw her last professional pitch in 2010.
“We are really excited to have Jennie come out and manage the team,” said Bluefish General Manager Jamie Toole. “She is an incredible athlete and a wonderful person, and we hope our fans will enjoy seeing her in a Bluefish uniform for the day.”
This will be the second appearance in Connecticut for the superstar with model looks. Finch played for Team USA when they dusted the Stratford Brakettes—winners of 27 national ASA championships—in a 2008 pre-Olympic tune-up exhibition.
There will be a special pregame meet-and-greet with the softball superstar at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard beginning at 11 a.m., where fans will have the opportunity to take photos with Jennie and have one item autographed. The meet-and-greet is limited to 150 fans. The cost for the meet-and-greet is $45 per person, which includes one ticket to the Bluefish-Blue Crabs game. “I’m looking forward to coming to Bridgeport to serve as guest manager, and looking forward to meeting the fans in Bridgeport,” said Finch. “Go Bluefish!”
First pitch is 1:12 p.m. with gates opening at 12:12 pm. Tickets cost $12 and can only be reserved in groups of 20 or more, with the purchase of 2016 season tickets, or with one of the three Bluefish mini-plan options. Mini-plans cost $60 and each includes a ticket to six games—including a ticket to Opening Day. The Bluefish will open the 2016 season on the road with series in Sugarland, Tex., and Waldorf, Md., and return to Bridgeport for the home opener on April 24 vs. their new in-state rival, the New Britain Bees. For more information, click HERE.