Monday, April 16, 2007

Salem makes right choice

The Dugout doesn't live anywhere near Blacksburg, Va. and has no ties to Virginia Tech, but it couldn't let the events of the day pass without notice. As of this moment 33 people were slaughtered today when a yet-to-be identified man for some yet-to-be identified reason pulled out a gun and started firing.

Watching the death toll climb throughout the day was almost unreal. It went from one to ten to 22 to 33 and may still go higher if some of the wounded don't make it out of the hospital. It is said to be the largest mass shooting in our country's history.

The Carolina League's Salem Avalanche, the Single-A affiliate of the Houston Astros, play their home games about 30 minutes from the Virginia Tech campus. They were scheduled to host Potomac tonight, but chose to postpone the game in the wake of the tragedy.

"The Salem Avalanche felt that playing baseball tonight would be a disservice to those who have lost loved ones, friends and acquaintances in the tragedy at Virginia Tech today," John Katz, Avalanche VP / General Manager said in a release posted on Salem's Web site. "A moment of silence is not enough to honor these young men and women who have lost their lives in Blacksburg today."

The teams will play a doubleheader today starting at 11:07. The delay of sixteen hours won't be enough to allow the Salem community to comprehend the events of Monday morning. Still, sometimes it really is the thought that counts. It seems this is one of those instances where baseball, and particularly the Salem organization, can help bring the community back together.

The Dugout commends Salem’s efforts and offers its deepest condolences to all those affected by the acts of a mad man.

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