Mr. Sparky

SARASOTA – The Sarasota All Stars are headed to the state championships next month.

It was a great Father’s Day gift for Tony Lujan and Jonas Guerrero, two of the team’s coaches.

“It feels great,” Lujan said.

“These guys put a lot of work in, a lot of time, you know it’s obviously paying off – we’re going to state so we’re excited,” Guerrero said. “I think we’re just as excited as the kids are.”

Tucker Schlotterback, the team’s first basemen, described what it felt like to find out he was going to the state championship.

“[It’s] really exciting, and I’m really happy,” he said.

The Cal Ripken T-ball team won three out of their four playoff games, earning themselves a spot in the state tournament in July – something a Sarasota T-ball team has not done in a long time.

“It’s been a while since one has gone to a state tournament that they qualified for,” Lujan said.

Before they make the drive to Lake City, they have some fundraising to do for travel accommodations.

“People lose days at work, so it’s not an easy feat to get everybody out there,” Lujan said, “but every little bit helps.”

It is not easy, but seeing the kids’ excitement helps.

“They work hard and do a good job, they really do,” Lujan said. “It’s amazing what these kids can do at their age.”

Fundraising on Father’s Day? No problem.

“We’re coaches but we’re parents too, so its amazing to watch these kids and see what they can do,” Lujan said.

To help the team on their journey to Lake City, you can send donations to:

Sarasota County Youth Baseball (SCYB) P.O. Box 51873, Sarasota, FL 34232.