Despite being born without a right hand, Jim Abbot found success at the highest level of the game, pitching for 10 seasons in Major League Baseball. Abbott pitched for the California Angels, New York Yankees, Chicago White Sox, and Milwaukee Brewers from 1989 to 1999. As a student-athlete at the University of Michigan, Abbott won the James E. Sullivan Award as the nation’s best amateur athlete in 1987, and he also earned a gold medal in the demonstration event at the 1988 Summer Olympics. Selected in the first round of the 1988 Major League Baseball Draft, Abbott reached the Majors the next year without ever throwing a pitch in the minor leagues. As a member of the Yankees in 1993, he pitched a no-hitter against the Cleveland Indians. He finished his career with 87 wins in 1999, and has since spent considerable time sharing his story of overcoming adversity with various groups across the country.
Topics Include: Motivation; Overcoming Adversity; Achieving Success; Inspiration
Billy Bean played Major League Baseball from 1987 to 1995, breaking into the league with the Detroit Tigers after he was drafted in the fourth round of the 1986 amateur draft. Bean debuted with a bang, collecting four hits in his first game, which tied a major league record. He would spend three seasons in the Motor City before being traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers. He signed with the San Diego Padres in 1993, where he spent three more seasons before retiring at age 31. In 2000 Bean grabbed national headlines when he publicly revealed that he is gay. In 2003, he wrote Going the Other Way: Lessons from a Life in and out of Major League Baseball, which chronicled his struggles as a closeted man playing at the major league level. Bean has been a prominent role model in the LGBT community for the past 15 years . He is a founding member of the LGBT Sports Coalition, and Vice Chairman of The StandUp Foundation, the largest anti-bullying foundation in the U.S. On July 15, 2014 he was appointed MLB’s first Ambassador for Inclusion. Billy is a member of the National Gay and Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame.
Topics Include: Overcoming Adversity; LGBT Inclusion and Awareness
Preceded by father Ray Boone and succeeded by sons Aaron and Bret Boone in Major League Baseball, Bob Boone’s career as a catcher is characterized by his defensive prowess and longevity. Over a 19- year career, Boone won a World Series with the Philadelphia Phillies in 1980, was named an All-Star four times and earned seven Gold Gloves behind the plate. When he retired in 1990 Boone was the all-time leader in games caught with 2,225, a record that would be broken by Carlton Fisk three seasons later. The Stanford University product spent his first 10 seasons with the Phillies from 1972 to 1981, earning three All-Star selections and a pair of Gold Gloves. In 1982 Boone was traded to the California Angels, where he would spend the next seven seasons. While an Angel, Boone caught Mike Witt’s perfect game in 1984 and won three consecutive Gold Gloves from 1986 to 1988. He earned a fourth straight Gold Glove as a member of the Kansas City Royals in 1989 before retiring after the 1990 campaign. He went on to manage the Royals from 1995 to 1998 and the Cincinnati Reds from 2001 to 2003 before transitioning to a front office position. He currently serves as the Assistant General Manager and Vice President of Player Development for the Washington Nationals.
Topics Include: Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Team Building
Bouton was a right-handed pitcher who spent the majority of his 10-year career with the New
York Yankees, where he won the World Series in 1962 and was named an All-Star in 1963. He gained
notoriety for authoring the controversial and impactful book Ball Four, an insider’s look at Bouton’s baseball career and his 1969 season with the Seattle Pilots. After his playing career Bouton continued to write about baseball and also worked to develop Big League Chew, the shredded bubble gum brand.
Topics Include: Anecdotal and Humorous Baseball Stories; Business Success
Topics include: Overcoming Adversity; Inspiration; Motivation; Achieving Success; Anecdotal Baseball
Topics Include: Domestic Politics and Economics; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Faithn
Topics Include: Motivation; Inspiration; Communication; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
After a standout performance in the 1984 Olympics and an award-winning season with the Mississippi State Bulldogs in 1985, Clark was the San Francisco Giants second overall pick in the 1985 Amateur Draft and less than a year later he debuted as the Giants starting third baseman. From there, he established himself as the gold standard among National League first basemen – from 1987 to 1992 he made five All-Star teams, finished in the top-five of the Most Valuable Player balloting four times and led the Giants to a World Series appearance in 1989. After eight seasons in San Francisco he spent five years with the Texas Rangers, made another All-Star team and appeared in the postseason two more times. He retired after the 2000 season with 2,176 hits, 284 home runs and a .303 batting average. Clark has worked for the Giants front office in community relations and coaching capacities since 2009. Topics Include: Motivation; Developing a Winning Attitude; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
One of the most exciting players of his generation, Davis elicited comparisons to Willie Mays as the centerfielder for the Cincinnati Reds. From 1986 to 1990 he averaged 30 home runs and 40 stolen bases, won a pair of Gold Glove awards and led the Reds to a World Series victory in 1990. Injuries limited his production for a handful of years before he returned to form in 1996 and won National League Comeback Player of the Year honors, but in 1997 as a member of the Orioles he was diagnosed with colon cancer. He returned to the field later that same season and hit a game-winning home run for the Orioles in their American League Championship Series matchup with the Cleveland Indians. He subsequently led Bristol-Myers Squibb’s national Score Against Colon Cancer public awareness and screening campaign in 1998. He is currently a special assistant to the General Manager for the Reds.
Topics Include: Overcoming Adversity; Motivation; Inspiration; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
time All-Star and World Series champion – with the Anaheim Angels in 2002 and the St. Louis Cardinals in 2006 – he was a walk- on player at the University of Florida before later earning an athletic scholarship. Eckstein began his career with the Angels in 2001, where he was the starting shortstop until 2004, when he became a free agent and signed with the Cardinals. He garnered back-to-back All-Star selections as a Cardinal, and won World Series Most Valuable Player honors in 2006, after they defeated the Detroit Tigers in the Fall Classic, 4-1. Since retiring, Eckstein has focused his energy on Her Universe, a company he and his wife Ashley founded that produces fashion and accessories for female Sci-Fi fans.
Topics Include: Motivation; Inspiration; Faith; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Endurance and Perseverance; Overcoming Setbacks and Failures; Being a Man of Impact; Christian Messages; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
games, a National League record that still stands today. From 1974 to 1981 Garvey made eight consecutive All-Star Games, won four Gold Glove Awards at first base and earned NL Most Valuable Player honors in 1974. He carried the Dodgers to a World Series victory in 1981, and is the team’s all- time hits leader in the postseason with 63. Garvey signed with the San Diego Padres in 1982 and led them to their first-ever World Series appearance in 1984. He retired in 1987 with 2,599 hits, 272 home runs and 10 All-Star appearances. He has been involved in the Dodgers community relations department since his retirement, and after being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2012, he has dedicated time and resources to prostate awareness as well.
Topics Include: Inspiration; Motivation; Overcoming Adversity; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
1989 to 1997, then returned for a second stint at the helm for Toronto from 2008 to 2010 before officially retiring from the game. Over his managing career, Gaston collected 894 wins. In 2008, Gaston was presented with a Negro League Hall of Fame Legacy Award. He is also enshrined in the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame, the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and owns an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Toronto.
Topics Include: Motivation; Overcoming Adversity; Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Teamwork & Leadership
off it, Doug Glanville is one of the most well-rounded men to ever play the game. A nine-year major league veteran who spent the majority of his career with the Philadelphia Phillies, Glanville was valued for his defense and timely hitting. Primarily a center fielder, Glanville enjoyed his best offensive season in 1999 when he batted .325 for the Phillies and set career marks with 204 hits, 38 doubles and 34 stolen bases. In 2003 Glanville appeared in the postseason with the Chicago Cubs and in game 3 of the National League Champion Series he came through with the game-winning triple in the 11th inning. Glanville retired as a Phillie at the beginning of the 2015 season, finishing his career with 293 consecutive games played without committing a fielding error. Glanville earned a Bachelors Systems Science and Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania, and since his retirement he has stayed busy in both the business and media realms. Over the years he has served as managing partner for Chicago- based Metropolitan Development, a real estate development firm; and is currently President of GK Alliance, LLC, an Illinois-based company that provides intellectual capital for start-ups. At GK Alliance Glanville is responsible for seeking and promoting new business initiatives. On the media side, Glanville has been a full-time force for ESPN as well. He contributes to Baseball Tonight, ESPN Radio, ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine, and has also been a guest columnist and contributor to The New York Times and the Atlantic, and in 2014 he released The Game From Where I Stand, a book that reveals the human side of baseball and the men who play it. Glanville currently resides in Connecticut with his family.
Topics Include: Importance of Higher Education; Business Development; Media and Broadcast Journalism; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Business Success; Technology; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
KEN GRIFFEY SR.
Griffey, Sr. was an outfielder for the vaunted “Big Red Machine” teams the Cincinnati Reds fielded in the 1970’s that won back-to-back World Series in 1975 and 1976. Griffey also spent five of his 19 MLB seasons in New York with the Yankees. He made three All-Star teams over the course of his career, and in the early 1990’s he and his son, Ken Griffey, Jr., both members of the Seattle Mariners at the time, became the first father-son combo to play together at the major league level. Griffey, Sr. retired after the 1991 season with more than 2,000 hits and 350 doubles. In 2006 he overcame prostate cancer and subsequently became a spokesperson for Kimberley-Clark’s prostate cancer awareness campaign. He currently works for the Cincinnati Reds in an advisory role.
Topics Include: Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Overcoming Adversity; Leadership & Teamwork
88,000 square foot elite training facility and developing Bo Bikes Bama, an annual cycling trip in Alabama that unites cyclists in support of the state and assists in its efforts to recover from tornado damage.
Topics Include: Finding Success Outside your Comfort Zone; Importance of a Higher Education; Motivation; Business Success; Anecdotal Sports Stories
Topics Include: Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Humor; Baseball Development; Faith
Topics Include: Philanthropy; Motivation; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Motivation; Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Developing a Winning Attitude
Topics Include: Anecdotal and Humorous Baseball Stories; Sports Broadcasting and Analysis
Topics Include: Overcoming Adversity; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Leading and Managing Change; Leadership and Team Management; Peak Performance; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Philanthropy; Importance of a Higher Education; Motivation; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
2004, Leiter won ten or more games and never lost more than he won. In the 1997 World Series, Leiter started and won Game 7 over the Cleveland Indians, helping Florida win its first Fall Classic in franchise history. Leiter was traded to the New York Mets after this, where he spent the next seven years of his career. He won a career-high 18 games in 1998 and then led the Mets to a World Series appearance in
2000 against their cross-town rival New York Yankees. He finished his career in 2005 with 162 wins and over 2,000 strikeouts. Leiter was honored by MLB with the Branch Rickey Award in 1999 and the Roberto Clemente Award in 2000, both honors bestowed upon a player for their philanthropic efforts in the community. Since his retirement, Leiter has worked as a studio analyst at MLB Network and as a color commentator for the YES Network. He is also a board member at Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association.
Topics Include: Philanthropy; Inspiration; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Sports Broadcasting and Analysis
Topics Include: Motivation; Inspiration; Integrity; Overcoming Adversity
1983, making him the youngest player to ever win it in consecutive seasons. Widely regarded as one of the greatest players of his generation, Murphy made seven All-Star teams, took home five Gold Glove Awards and won four Silver Sluggers from 1980 to 1987. At the time of his retirement in 1993, he ranked third on the Braves all-time leader board in hits, home runs, runs batted in, runs scored and walks, trailing only Eddie Mathews and Hank Aaron. As a mark of his character, Murphy also won the Lou Gehrig Memorial Award in 1985, which honors the baseball player who best fits the image and character of The Iron Horse on and off the field. He also won the Roberto Clemente Award a year later, awarded to the player with high character and who makes charitable contributions to the community. Murphy, a father of eight, is also active on Twitter and broadcasts part-time for the Atlanta Braves.
Topics Include: Faith; Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Philanthropy;
over his 20-year career, all with the Baltimore Orioles. The right-hander led the American League in wins for three straight seasons from 1975 to 1977, and was selected to six All-Star Teams. In 1966 as a 20- year-old, Palmer became the youngest pitcher to ever throw a shutout in a World Series game, and he is also the only pitcher to win Fall Classic games in three different decades. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1990 on the first ballot. Since his retirement, Palmer has worked on broadcasts for ABC and ESPN, and is entering his 20th season as an analyst for MASN, the Orioles broadcast partner. Palmer has also appeared in various advertisements over the years, including for Jockey brand men’s briefs, The Money Store and Nationwide Motors Corp. He has been regarded as the “perfect gentleman” by journalists and broadcasters.
Topics Include: Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Humorous Stories; Achieving Success
Topics Include: Inspiration; Motivation; Faith; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
CAL RIPKEN JR.
Topics Include: Keys to Perseverance; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Series over his 20-year career, most notably in 2004 with the Boston Red Sox, breaking the “Curse of the Bambino” and ending an 86-year championship drought the franchise had endured. In 2001 Schilling won the first World Series of his career with the Arizona Diamondbacks, when he and fellow starting pitcher Randy Johnson were named co-Most Valuable Players in the Series win. In 2007, his final season in the majors, Schilling won a third World Series, again with the Red Sox. He retired with 216 regular season wins, 3,116 strikeouts and six All-Star appearances. Over his postseason career Schilling was 11-2 with a 2.23 ERA, the best of mark of any pitcher with at least 10 decisions. After stumping for John McCain in his 2008 Presidential run and Scott Brown for Massachusetts’ vacant Senate seat in 2009, Schilling joined ESPN as a baseball color analyst. Throughout his career and into his retirement, Schilling has raised money and awareness for the ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) Association through his own organization, Curt’s Pitch for ALS, and other avenues. In February, 2014, Schilling revealed that he had been diagnosed with mouth cancer. Six months later he announced that the cancer was in remission, and by the middle of September, he returned to the airwaves as the lead analyst on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball. Schilling remains active and engaging on Twitter and on his personal blog when he is not broadcasting. He currently resides in Massachusetts with his wife, Shonda, and their four children.
Topics Include: Overcoming Adversity; Philanthropy; Inspiration; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Philanthropy; Motivation; Inspiration; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
Topics Include: Inspiration; Motivation; Philanthropy; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
– 1990), New York Yankees (1995 – 1999) and Los Angeles Dodgers (1991 – 1993) over his 17-year career. An eight-time All-Star and four-time World Series champion (1986, 1996, 1998, 1999), Strawberry and Bobby Bonds are the only two players in Major League Baseball history to amass both
150 home runs and 150 stolen bases over their first six seasons. Strawberry struggled with substance abuse and depression during and after his career, and he has also overcome cancer. Since turning his life around Strawberry has become an ordained Christian minister and he spends a majority of his time spreading his motivational and inspirational message. Topics include: Overcoming Adversity; Faith; Motivation
Topics Include: Faith; Anecd
1990 he was an All-Star-caliber third baseman, hitting 33 home runs and leading the National League with 122 runs batted in. He would go on to eclipse the 30 home run plateau five more times in his career. After an exceptional 10-year stint with the Giants that featured four All-Star selections, three Gold Gloves, an NL home run crown and a World Series appearance, Williams was traded to the Cleveland Indians, where he brought them to the brink of a World Series win against the Florida Marlins in 1997. In 1999, with the Arizona Diamondbacks, Williams made his fourth All-Star team and finished third in the NL’s Most Valuable Player voting after hitting 35 home runs and driving in 142 runs. In 2001, Williams won a World Series with the Diamondbacks when they defeated the New York Yankees in seven games. Williams retired as a player following the 2003 season with 378 career home runs, which at the time were the fifth-most of any third baseman in the modern era. Williams returned to the Diamondbacks organization in 2010 as a coach under manager Kirk Gibson. Following the 2013 season, Williams was named the fifth manager in Washington Nationals history, following Davey Johnson’s retirement from the position, and led the team to its second-ever National League East Division title. Williams returned to the Diamondbacks as a coach for the 2016 season.
Topics Include: Anecdotal Baseball Stories; Developing a Winning Attitude; Team Building;
Topics Include: Motivation; Philanthropy; Team Building; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
College World Series as a pitcher and was then drafted number one overall by the San Diego Padres. Winfield spent the first eight seasons of his career with the Padres before signing with the New York Yankees during the 1980 offseason. In his prime years, Winfield made 12 consecutive All-Star teams, through his age 36 season in 1988. He was not only a force at the plate, as noted by his five Silver Slugger awards, but Winfield also excelled in the outfield, earning seven Gold Glove awards too. Later in his career, Winfield drove in the winning run of the 1992 World Series for the Toronto Blue Jays and then returned to his native Minnesota two seasons later and reached the 3,000-hit milestone as a member of the Twins. He retired at age 43 after 22 major league seasons under his belt with 3,110 hits and 465 home runs. In 2001, his first year of eligibility, Winfield was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame with 84.5 percent of the votes. Long-known for his philanthropic endeavors, Winfield became the first professional athlete to create a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation while still an active player – something that has been copied by fellow professional athletes since. The Winfield Foundation provided healthcare services, nutritional counseling, scholarships, computer literacy, and holiday dinners to children and families in need across the country. In recognition of his longstanding work throughout the community, both during and after his playing career, Winfield has received honorary Doctorate of Laws from both Syracuse University and Thomas Jefferson School of Law. In recent years Winfield has focused his efforts on assisting organizations reach their business and charitable goals through keynote presentations and lectures. Winfield is also an accomplished author – he has published numerous books, been a syndicated columnist, and is also a frequent contributor in the New York Times and Los Angeles Times. He currently serves as Special Assistant to Tony Clark, the Executive Director of the Major League Baseball Players Association.
Topics Include: It’s a Game, a Science and your Business: Your Winning Game Plan; Live a Hall of Fame Life: Your own Pathway to Promise; The 5 Levels: From Aspiration to Achievement
Topics Include: Motivation; Team Building; Anecdotal Baseball Stories
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