Smoltz, Foxworthy team up for charity
Comedian to host event on Nov. 9 for pitcher's foundation
ATLANTA -- If you can count Tiger Woods and Jeff Foxworthy among your best friends, you wouldn't exactly be a redneck. But if you didn't take advantage of these friendships, you definitely wouldn't be smarter than a fifth grader.
Fortunately, John Smoltz appears to have passed the latter test.
Foxworthy, the popular comedian, who is currently the host of FOX's "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?" will be providing some of his classic redneck jokes and throwing jabs at Smoltz during a fun-filled event aimed toward raising money for the John Smoltz Foundation, which has supported numerous charitable endeavors in the Atlanta area over the past decade.
"An Evening With Smoltz, Foxworthy and Friends" is scheduled for Nov. 9 at the new Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre at Encore Park in Alpharetta, Ga. The show, which will begin at 7 p.m. ET, will be highlighted by the comedy of Foxworthy and include appearances by Smoltz and some of his teammates, both past and present.
"We're just going to have a lot of fun with this," Smoltz said. "I love to laugh, and that's what we all plan to do that day. Trying to raise money at this time isn't exactly easy. But we have a lot of neat things that we're offering."
Tickets for the event went on sale on Tuesday. There are also still some sponsorship opportunities available. Those interested in serving as an event sponsor should visit JohnSmoltz.org.
The top two sponsorship packages, which cost $29,000 and $15,000, provide the opportunity to enjoy a private pre-event reception at Smoltz's house, which includes multiple golf holes, a basketball court, pitching mound and football field.
When once asked what he'd done the night before, former Braves first baseman Adam LaRoche said, "We took the kids to Smoltzie's house. It's like taking them to Six Flags."
"This event will be informal and fun," Smoltz said. "It will be up to [Foxworthy] as to what he wants to do. It's his show, and I'm just thankful that he agreed to help me with this."
Foxworthy and Smoltz met while their kids attended the same suburban Atlanta school, and they've since developed a good friendship. They've regularly attended Bible study sessions together and enjoyed the opportunity to compete against each other in numerous sports.
"He's very competitive at everything he does," said Smoltz, who has been described in the same manner. "Whether we're bowling or shooting hoops or whatever, you can see that fire he has."
So how does Foxworthy fare when you challenge him on the golf course?
"He can't golf and it's best that he doesn't," Smoltz said.
Smoltz, who underwent season-ending shoulder surgery in June, remains hopeful and seemingly confident that he'll be able to pitch again next year. The 41-year-old hurler hasn't had any problems while playing catch over the past few weeks. But the true test will come when he throws off a mound, and he likely won't be cleared to do that until January.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.