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Rockets aiming to win Armed Forces softball game

HUNTSVILLE – Statistics, wins and headlines tell the history of the annual Armed Forces Celebration softball game between the North Alabama Rockets and Team Redstone.

As far back as 2017, you will find final scores like 14-11 and 16-9 alongside post-game headlines “Redstone rolls over community leaders” and “The outfield fences couldn’t hold Team Redstone.”

(City of Huntsville contributed)

Even fans from both sides admit, “Team Redstone has dominated this game the last few years,” said one fan.

“I’m not sure the community team has ever won…,” said another.

But regardless of how big and long the losing streak, the ever-optimistic Rockets cheerful refrain, “There is always next year!”

And so next year is this year and there has been significant changes in the roster for the Rockets as they try to wrest the Target Destroyed trophy from Team Redstone.

Will the team of Madison County community leaders break the losing streak when they meet June 27 at Toyota Field?

(City of Huntsville contributed)

Mayor Tommy Battle is still recovering from a foot injury and will be coaching rather than playing, and the team will be without one of their strongest hitters, former County Commission Chairman – now Congressman – Dale Strong.

But there will be some new batters in the lineup this year such as Madison County Commission Chairman Mac McCutcheon.

“The Team Redstone/Community Leaders Softball Game is a fun tradition held annually during Armed Forces Celebration Week in Huntsville,” said Mayor Battle. “As we honor the brave men and women who serve or have served in the military, we look forward to coming together for a little friendly competition June 27 at Toyota Field.

“Bring the whole family to ‘catch’ an out-of-the-park game and root for your favorite team!”

We will find out soon enough but there is one thing for certain – win or lose, there will be a lot of fun and fandom – maybe even a little laughter, at Toyota Field.

Admission is free. The gates open at 5 p.m. First Pitch is at 5:30 p.m.

(City of Huntsville contributed)

The Rockets lineup is:

  • Huntsville DEI Director Kenny Anderson
  • Madison Mayor Paul Finley
  • State Rep. Rex Reynolds
  • Huntsville City Councilman Devyn Keith
  • Madison County Sheriff Kevin Turner
  • Huntsville City School Board member Ryan Renaud
  • Madison City Administrator Steve Smith
  • University of Alabama in Huntsville Head Softball Coach and Hall of Famer Les Stuedeman
  • Jalen Williams, Huntsville Sports Commission event operations manager
  • Jeff Gronberg, CEO of decibel Research
  • Steve Thornton, vice president of the Huntsville Sports Commission

Mark Russell, Huntsville Sports Commission executive director, is coaching with Battle.

So, while the pitchers warm up their curveball in the bullpen and the base runners practice their slides, Team Redstone prepares their mantel for yet another coveted Target Destroyed trophy!

(City of Huntsville contributed)

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