LAKEWOOD, NJ - Despite wintry weather pushing the Phillies Winter Tour stop in Lakewood back six days, the event, held Tuesday night at Woodlake Country Club, was a success and raised money for BlueClaws Charities and their Community Partners grant program.

The event featured appearances by Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro, hitting coach Greg Gross, former pitcher and current special assistant Dickie Noles, and Phillies first-round pick and possible 2011 BlueClaw Jesse Biddle.

Click here for interviews and media reports from the event.

Fundraisers at the event included Jesse Biddle signed replica baseball cards and raffle items provided by the BlueClaws and Phillies, such as a bat signed by Raul Ibanez and another signed by Chase Utley.

Wrote the Asbury Park Press:

"The first pro scout to talk to me was from the (Washington) Nationals," Biddle said. "He spoke to me during my sophomore year. He said, "You look real good. You have a lot of work to do.' At the age of 12, I had dreams of playing for the Phillies. I took those dreams seriously."

Biddle last year pitched for the GCL Phillies of the Gulf Coast League at the rookie level in Clearwater, Fla., and the Williamsport (Pa.) Crosscutters of the short-season New York-Penn League, a Class A circuit.

The Philadelphia resident went 3-1 with a 4.32 ERA with the GCL Phillies, appearing in and starting nine games and tossing one complete game. In 33 1/3 innings, he allowed 35 hits, struck out 41 and walked nine.

With Williamsport, Biddle went 1-0 in three games — all starts — and posted a 2.61 ERA. In 10 1/3 innings, he surrendered five hits, whiffed nine and walked 11.

"I use the Little League approach," Biddle said. "Go out and have fun."

Also appearing before an estimated 150 fans at the event, a fundraiser for BlueClaws Charities, were ex-Philadelphia players Dickie Noles and Greg Gross. They were teammates on the Phillies' 1980 World Series championship club. Noles is a special assistant with the Phillies. Gross is their hitting coach.

The next major BlueClaws Charities fundraising event is an April 5th exhibition game between the BlueClaws and Monmouth University. First pitch is at 6 pm and admission is just $5.

- BlueClaws Charities -

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