Johnny Bench, Don Sutton Speaking at Valley Fundraiser Tonight

Baseball Hall of Famers Johnny Bench and Don Sutton will talk baseball in Rancho Mirage Thursday night to raise money for construction at Palm Valley School.

The event includes ballpark-style food, photos and a Q-and-A session with Bench and Sutton, and memorabilia signings for an additional fee.

Proceeds from the 6 p.m. event at Thunderbird Country Club will go toward the construction of a new high school for students at the private college preparatory school, which was formed in 2005 when Marywood Country Day and Palm Valley Schools merged.

"We are excited about Johnny and Don joining us for this special event," said Robert Graves, head of the school. "Fierce competitors during their stellar careers, their willingness to share their baseball stories to benefit Palm Valley speaks volumes about their support of the community."

Bench, a catcher for the Cincinnati Reds, was named National League Most Valuable Player in 1970 and 1972 and World Series MVP in 1976. In 1980, he set an endurance record for catching in 100 or more games for 13 consecutive seasons.     He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1989 and worked as a sportscaster after retirement. He hosted the Emmy-winning instructional show "The Baseball Bunch," which aired in the 1980s, and has supported several charities, according to his website.

Sutton, who spent most of his 23-season major league career with the Los Angeles Dodgers, won 324 games, tied for 14th on the all-time list with Nolan Ryan. He lost 256 times.

Sutton's 58 shutouts are the 10th most all-time. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1998. Sutton is now a broadcaster with the Atlanta Braves.

Palm Valley serves students from preschool through the 12th grade.

Tickets are $100 for adults and $50 for those ages 3-18. The fundraiser is limited to 300 people. For tickets, call (760) 328-0861 or go to www.pvs.org.

– City News Service.


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