Frankford Baseball
Frankford starter Luis De Las Cruz during pregame festivities. | PHOTO: Patrick Gordon
Juan Namnun is a man fueled by a profound commitment to raise awareness about the often-overlooked issue of breast cancer in men. 
 
Driven by this dedication, he found himself at FDR Park on Monday, spearheading the inaugural Coaches vs. Cancer High School Baseball Fest. With the participation of eight Public League clubs, the event aimed to amplify breast cancer awareness and fundraising endeavors, ultimately rallying close to $10,000 for the American Cancer Society. 
 
"Two years ago I was diagnosed with a rare form of male breast cancer," Namnun shared. "Obviously it was a really long battle for me, and throughout the process I was thinking of ways that I could combine my love for baseball and my new role as an American Cancer Society ambassador, so we came up with this one day baseball fest with some great teams to raise some money for the American Cancer Society."
 
Beyond his commitment to cancer awareness, Namnun embodies the quintessential spirit of Philadelphia. A proud native of Frankford, he injects the diamond with boundless energy and a commanding vocal presence. Renowned for his tough-love coaching style, Namnun isn't hesitant to deliver feedback loudly and passionately. However, it's unmistakable that he has earned the respect and admiration of his players. 
 
Perhaps it's that balance of tough-love and respect that's earned him and his Pioneers seven Public League titles since he took over as head coach in 2008. 
 
Frankford dominated Lincoln in the main event on Monday, cruising to a 7-1 victory in a game shortened due to time constraints. 
 
The Pioneers wasted no time taking the lead in the opening inning, as Yuniel Ramirez's single drove in Gabriel Perez, who had reached base after being hit by a pitch. Lincoln managed to tie the game in the third inning when Sebastian Perez scored on a wild pitch. However, Frankford quickly regained the lead in the bottom of the third when Fralin Maldanado crossed the plate on a passed ball. In the fifth inning, Frankford capitalized on Lincoln's reliever Aedyn Schmidheiser, scoring five more runs to secure their victory decisively. 
 
Luis De Las Cruz secured the victory for the Pioneers, tossing three frames while allowing one unearned run. He whiffed five. Emmanuel Roman was sharp in relief, collecting five strikeouts over two innings while not allowing a hit. 
 
The win improved Frankford to 3-0 on the year, while the Railsplitters fell to 1-5. 
 
"Just having these guys out here, playing this game, it's incredible," Namnun said. "I'm proud of what we've done here, but there's so much more to do." 
 
You can still help the cause by donating here
 
In Other Action 
Franklin Towne 15, Mariana Bracetti 7 
MaST Community 5, String Theory 1

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