Big League World Series almost here

By Jason Evans
Staff Reporter

Easley also hosting Southeast regional tourney this weekend

EASLEY — Easley is gearing up to host the Big League Baseball World Series later this month.

The tournament will be held July 26-Aug. 2 at the J.B. “Red” Owens Recreation Complex.


Tournament director Jon Humphrey spoke about the series during Easley City Council’s July meeting Monday night.

“The championship game Aug. 2 will be televised once again on ESPN,” Humphrey said. “So the whole world will be watching us.”

Eleven teams will be coming in from around the world to play ball, he said.

blws logo“(There will be) five international teams and six U.S. teams,” Humphrey said. “We already know that Puerto Rico will be coming. We do know that Curaçao won the Latin America tournament. That’s their first time coming here. That’s an exciting thing for us, to have a newcomer coming here.”

He said Chinese-Taipei just won the Asia Pacific tournament.

“So Chinese-Taipei will be coming back,” Humphrey said. “We also know that we have our local team, South Carolina District 1, skippered by Gregg Powell. He’s got a good team.”

But you don’t have to wait until the end of the month to see tournament action.

Easley is stepping up to the plate to offer Little League International some assistance — by hosting the Southeast regional tournament this weekend.

The tournament had to be moved from Florida, and its original site in Tennessee fell through, city administrator Stephen Steese said. Little League International officials then contacted the city to see if Easley could host the regional.

“I think it’s going to work out just fine. We’ll have teams from six states, including South Carolina, coming in to play,” Steese said. “The winner of that will be the Southeast representative in the Big League World Series.”

“I know that Little League appreciates that the city of Easley stepped up to host that tournament,” Humphrey said.

Games begin in the regional tournament Friday morning at the Alice Mills park.

Humphrey thanked city officials and employees for their support of the tournament over the past 10 years.

“We can’t run this tournament without your support,” he said. “I just wanted to say thank you to all of you.”

Mayor Larry Bagwell asked Humphrey if hosting the regional tournament would take some of the luster off the BLWS.

Humphrey said the extra event will tax some of the volunteer base.

“It does a take a little out of that,” he said. “But we have a very giving community.”

The tournament is a success every year thanks to the efforts of “hundreds of volunteers,” Humphrey said.