The New York Mets invited members of the five United States military branches to Citi Field in Flushing to participate in the third annual Mets Military Softball Classic on Monday, Aug. 21.
After a meet-and-greet with Mets General Manager — and retired Marine — Sandy Alderson, members from the Air Force, Army, Marines, Coast Guard and Navy all competed in the round-robin style softball tournament to see which branch would reign supreme.
With their family and friends cheering them on from the stands at Citi Field, the teams took the field for warmups before the games began.
Kicking off Round 1 of the tournament was the Air Force taking on the Marines/Coast Guard; and the Navy/Coast Guard team versus the Army. Air Force and Marines/Coast Guard tied 1-1, while Navy/Coast Guard doubled up Army 6-3.
The second round featured Navy/Coast Guard sailing past Air Force 17-6, and Army beating Marines/Coast Guard 7-6.
The final round saw Navy/Coast Guard and Marines/Coast Guard finish in a tie 8-8, and Army march by Air Force 8-6.
After the tournament, players and their families enjoyed a ballpark buffet in the Bullpen Plaza. All participants also received an official team T-shirt and tickets to Monday night’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
“I’m really happy that the Mets are actively involved with active duty military, as well as veterans’ organizations. So this is one of our really outstanding events,” Alderson said of the tournament. “I think people love to come to the ballpark, play on a real, professional Major League surface and enjoy the camaraderie of their fellow service members, fellow services and their families. We’re very happy we’re able to host this.”