2019 Amateur Baseball Preview
Back for a sixth season at 1390 Granite City Sports/mnbaseball.org with your weekly amateur baseball (Town Team) baseball reports, including not only game summaries, but upcoming schedules, league standings, tournament summaries and an occasional special interest feature.
The plan is to continue to include: Lakewood League, Central Valley League, Sauk Valley League, Victory League South and Stearns County teams throughout their league playoffs, regional and state tourney games. Check out the Minnesota Amateur Baseball Web site for additional information: http://www.mnbaseball.org
The Class B Teams in the Lakewood League will have the same format this season. There will be four sections and four teams from each section will qualify for the state tourney. This will have the 16 team bracket as in the past. The Lakewood League will be in Section 2; Teams Included: Brainerd Bees, Cold Spring Springer's, Moorhead Brewers, Sauk Rapids Cyclones and St. Cloud Beaudreau's, Moorhead Mudcats and a big new addition the Sobieski Skis from the Victory League. Four Teams will qualify from each of the four regions.
Manager: Brian Anderson
Manager: Tim Martin
COLD SPRING SPRINGERS
Managers: Tim Illies/Dave Hinkemeyer
The Springers are expecting to have all their players back from last season’s team. Jack Arnold is expected to be a full time player this summer. Sean Terres and Ben Etzel will be additions to the Springers this summer, these guys should definitely add to their pitching dept. Jack Steil a junior at Rocori High School will be on the roster this summer. Jordan Barth and Joey Stock are planning to be playing with the Rox of the Northwood League, both will play on a limited basis. Look for the Springers to make a run at a state title.
SAUK RAPIDS CYCLONES
Co-Managers: Paul Schlangen/Tom Wippler
SAUK VALLEY LEAGUE
The Sauk Valley League will add three teams for the 2019 season with Monticello, Big Lake and Rogers moving down from Class B but it will remain paired with the Central Valley League in Region 11C with four state tournament slots. The Sartell field formerly known as Champion Field will be now known as the St. Cloud Orthopedics Field. $600K projected, complete overhaul of the playing surface, New 8 foot fence all the way around, new scoreboard and batting cages.
Clear Lake Lakers
Foley Lumber Jacks
Sartell Stone Poneys
St. Joseph Joes
Big Lake Yellow Jackets
Rogers Red Devils
CLEAR LAKE LAKERS
Manager: Mike Smith
Manager: Mike Beier
The Lumberjacks are expecting all their players to return from last season, with the exception of Evan Warnert, he is retiring from playing baseball. Two new players from Foley High School have signed; Alex Foss and Alec Dietl.
Manager: Randy Beckstrom
The Muskies are expecting to return their complete roster from last season. The Muskies offense should be led by Tim Burns, Jace Otto and Andrew Deters. They do have a very experienced line up, that will surely support those three. The Muskies will have their top three pitchers, back; lefty David Deminsky, right hander Adam Wenker and lefty Johnny Schumer. This is possibly one of the top pitching staffs in the league as well in state Class C. They will get a number of innings from Austin Gohl, he is a sophomore at St. Cloud Tech CC. Look for the Muskies to make a strong challenge for another state berth and to make a run at the state.
SARTELL STONE PONEYS
Manager: Jeff Amann
The Poneys will not have Andy Knudson and Matt Maurer with the team this summer. Their top hitters should be back; Will Kranz the starting catcher for the U of Mary and Shawn Lindsay, Rudy Saurer and Josh Schaefer. New players joining the Poneys this season will be; Zach Overboe coming over from the St. Joseph Joes. Sean Minder lefty from the Crookston Reds, he threw 120 innings last summer. Dylan Dezurik a 2018 Sartell graduate and Austin Haugen a pitcher. The rest of the team is expected to be back.
Manager: Pat Schnieder
The Joes will have a few leaving and a number of new players to the roster this summer. Their top hitters: Alex Kendall, Joey Atkinson and Tanner Alshire will be back to lead what should be pretty balanced lineup.
They will have their top pitchers back, Alex Kendall, Greg Anderson, Joey Atkinson and Jack Atkinson. They should have very deep with their pitching staff. The Joes will have four players leaving this season, Zack Overboe, Caz Novak, Burke Tagney and Charles Vaughan. The Joes have five new players joining them this summer, Andrew Weisser, John Huebsch, Sam Schneider, Petyon Joos and Lukas Nyberg.
Manager: Mike Krempa
The Villains have one player that will not be back this summer, Steve VanVleet. All of the other players from last years team are expected to return. The Villains expect to have their top hitters, including; Mike Krempa, Keith Bistodeau, Will Berning, Kyle Hayden and Jim Althoff for the season. Kyle Hayden will be in his second season with Villains, he did a big share of the pitchers duties last summer. They are in the process of signing a couple more players for the summer.
BIG LAKE YELLOW JACKETS
Manager: Loren Holthaus
The Yellowjackets return nearly their entire team back from a 24-7 season. This was mostly against Class B foes, so look for them to be very competitive in the Sauk Valley. Their top two pitchers will be back; Mason Miller, when he completes his season at St. John's, he is a junior there and Taylor Giving both logged many innings last season. They had eleven players that hit over 32 last season, they are hoping to have a very balanced and potent lineup thru the order. They should make a strong bid for one of four state tournament bids.
Managers: Cole Hanson/Kevin Krenz
The Bandits top hitters, Ryan Hess (.312), Connor Rolf (.310) and Matt Krenz (.302). Their top pitchers will be returning; Cole Hanson, Jon Crowley and Dalton Fouquette. New players expected to join the Bandits; are Zach Wenner, Cam Fischer, Luke Eigen, Weston Schug, Ryan Groskreutz, Matt Eigen and Mitch Louden. The rest of the Bandits team are expected to be back for this season.
Manager: Joe Kounkel
The Polecats will have everyone back with the exception of one of their pitchers, Zack Zwack is staying at Xavier for the summer. Look for the Polecats to led by: Aaron Hanson, Michael Olson, Joe Tupy and Greg Holker to led the Polecats offense. They did maintain a good team batting average of .298. The Polecats top pitchers for the season include; Tanner Eckhart, Andrew Manning an Wyatt Morrell. The Polecats did have a good team ERA of 3.43.
ROGERS RED DEVILS
Manager: Bryan McCallum
The Red Devils are expecting their team to be returning for this season. Look for David Jorgenson, Caleb Reese and Bryan McCallum to lead their offense. Luke Selken and Nathan Ehnsrom are the Red Devils top pitchers from last season that will be returning
CENTRAL VALLEY LEAGUE
The Central Valley League and Sauk Valley League teams will all enter the Region 11C tourney, to compete for one of the four state births. The regional to be held in Sartell over three weekends. The new divisions are listed below.
St. Augusta Gussies
Cold Spring Rockies
Pearl Lake Lakers
St. Nicholas Knicks
Eden Valley Hawks
Manager: Corey Wenz
The Brewers are expecting everyone to return from last years state tournament team. They gave last years Class C state champions their toughest game of the tournament. They have signed two new players for the upcoming season, Troy Schroeder did play for the Brewers ten years ago and recently with the Cold Spring Silver Springers and Brady Kenning, he is a sophomore at St. Cloud Tech.
Manager: Matt Geislinger
The Clippers area expecting all their players to return for the upcoming season. They have signed a new player, Carter Block from Litchfield. Brock Humbert is the only player, they are not expecting back. The Clippers are expecting to have two left handers pitching for them this season.
Manager: Adam Bonoit
The Gussies will have their top two pitchers back for the upcoming season, Travis Laudenbach and Zack Laudenbach. They will be looking to log the bulk of the innings. Adam Gwost and Nate Laudenbach will be their primäry offensive leaders. The Gussies will have all the roster back from last summary, with no new players. Look for them to have a a very solid lineup both on defense and offense. They will give anyone a strong challenge in the Central Valley League and in the regional.
COLD SPRING ROCKIES
Manager: Mike Ficker/Dave Jonas
The Rockies will have everyone back from last years team and they have added two new high school players. Brock Humbert and Luke Humbert will see some playing time for the Rockies this summer. Look for Jordan Neu and Austin Dufner to lead their offense, however they do have several that are veteran players. They should have a very solid line up, thru out the order. The Rockies should have a very deep pitching staff with lefty Jake Brinker and those that are all getting time on the mound in college. Brandon Gill (U of Mary) Calvin Kalthoff (NDSU), Eli Backes (SCTCC) and lefty Ryan Hennen (UNC Greensboro). The Rockies will be looking to be in the hunt for one of four state tournament births.
Manager; Tom Marquardt
The Express will pretty much have all of the veteran ball players back for the season. Three new additions to the team includes; Michael Hoffman and Nick Gustafson 2018 Kimball Area High School graduates and Litchfield junior Cade Marquardt. The Express have made State tourney appearances the last four of five years. After a .500 regular seasons last summer, they put together a run.
PEARL LAKE LAKERS
Manager: Tim Voigt
The Lakers do expect all their players to back for this season, with the exception of Gus Botz, Craig Pfannenstein and Isaak Blitvich. They have signed three new players for the season; Blake Kunkel, Ryan Heslop and Tyler Stang. The Lakers top pitchers include Mitch Wienke, Mitch Ergen, Alex Miller and Justin Kunkel. Their top hitters are back, including: Chadd Kunkel, Ryan Wieneke, Colton Fruth Justin Kunkel and Tommy Linn.
ST. NICHOLAS NICKS
Manager: Robert Lutgren
The Nicks will have back their top pitchers and their offensive leaders will be back. Travis Hansen and Derek Kuechle did most of the pitching for the NIcks läst summer. Andrew Bautch and Matt Schindler should add a lot of depth to their pitching staff. Andrew Bautch and Matt Schindler should be of their offensive leaders along with the addition of Chris Wehlser, coming over from Farming and Tanner Anderson should bolster their offense.
EDEN VALLEY HAWKS
Manager: Robert Geislinger
Sunday April 28th
Cold Spring Rockies @ Luxemburg Brewers (2:00)
STEARNS COUNTY LEAGUE
The Stearns County Teams will compete for three state tournament berths in the Region 15C. Top four teams from both North and South Stearns qualify for the region tournament. The regional tournament will be hosted by the Richmond Royals for the 2019 season.
Meire Grove Grovers
New Munich Silverstreaks
Spring Hills Chargers
Lake Henry Lakers
St. Martin Martins
Manager: AJ Hadley
The Saints will have their roster intact for the upcoming season. They will expect Ethan and Aron Vogt to anchor the pitching staff again this season. Cody Eichers one of the top Saints hitters, is also the anchor of their pitching staff, as their catcher. The Saints have one of the top center fielders in the league in Kevin Kuefler and a great second baseman, that was in his rookie season last season Jackson Peter. Those expected to lead the offense includes: Kevin Kuefler, Matt Schmitz, Cody Eichers, Ethan Vogt, Jackson Peter and James Kuefler.
Manager: Nick Rademacher
MEIRE GROVE GROVES
Manager: Doug Meyer
NEW MUNICH SILVERSTREAKS
Manager: Paul Sand
The Silversteaks are expecting all the players to be back with the exception of Neil Anderson. The Silverstreaks will have their top hitters back, Logan Funk, Will Funk, Jacob Hinnenkamp and Joe Stangler. They have a pretty balanced lineup back. Their top pitchers with tons of experience are Jimmy Thul and Nick Stangler. Lefty Ty Reller had elbow issues last summer, but he appears to ready. The Silverstreaks strive on their defense and good pitching. If the Silverstreaks can produce some offense on a regular bases, they could challenge for one of those top spots in the region.
SPRING HILL CHARGERS
Manager: Gordan Barten
The Chargers expect to have all their players from back from last season. The signed three new players from Melrose High School; Ben Welle, Joshua Hemmesch and Reegan Nelson.
Manager: Dale Schroeder
LAKE HENRY LAKERS
Manager: Keith Lieser
The Lakers will have most of their team back for the season, Weston Brinkman one of their top pitchers did move out of the area. Jason Kampsen, Aaron Savelkoul and Carter Wessel should log the bulk of their innings on the mound. Shane Kampsen should be one of their key leaders from his catcher position and on offense. Matt Quade, Shane Kampsen and Adam Jaeger should give those great offensive leaders, this should give them great support from a very balanced lineup. The Lakers are looking for big seasons from three of their young players; Grant Ludwig, Sam Hopfer and Max Weidner. Look for the Lakers to be in the hunt for one of those three state tournament births.
Manager: Kirby Hemmesch
The Royals will have their top pitchers back for season, DJ Schleicher, Eli Emerson and Alex Budde are expected to log the bulk of the innings. Their top three hitters, Trent Gertken, Cole Schmitz and Alex Budde are expected to lead the offense, with good support from what should be a very balanced lineup. The Royals did add a veteran left handed pitcher from Atwater, Justin Schroeder. They also added two Rocori High School players, Max Hansen and Blake Miller. Those that not returning or are retiring are: Adam Backes, Dan Hansen, Andy Bauer, Luke Jokela and Brent Reugemer. The Royals will be looking for a return trip to the state tournament, they should be in the hunt for one of the three state births.
Manager: Ben Moser
Ben Moser will be in his first year as the manager for the Rangers, he did play as an eight grader until he was twenty-three. He took some time off and he then realized he really missed the amateur ball atmosphere. The Rangers will have a number new guys in new positions. Some of their top players will be Brent Heinen and Russ Leyendecker, they should be their key leaders for this young team. Jordan Schleper, Josh Mackedanz and Brent Heinen will be their top pitcher, as their top pitcher Jordan Roos has moved out of the area to take a teaching job. Jordan also played a very good shortstop when he wasn’t of the mound. Look for some of their young players to have a good season, Zack Mackedanz, Spencer Evans and Devon Savage. The new ball players joining the Rangers Roster will Bryce Vanderbeck a 7th Grader is Chris’s son, Gavin Stanger and Nic Gabralson from Regal are both 20 years old
ST. MARTIN MARTINS
Manager: Carl Lieser
The Martins will not have one of their top pitchers for the upcoming season. Ben Schroeder will be in Hawaii for the summer. The Martins will have one of the top shortstops in the region, Kyle Lieser and a very good catcher Bryan Schlangen. Those two will likely led their offense. Michael and Matthew Schlangen can play multiple positions and they were starting to hit for a pretty good average last season. Nathan Schlangen can also play most positions on the field, he had a off year with his offense last summer, look for him to come back with a big season on offense. Scott Schlangen is a very good third baseman and very good at putting the play on a very consistent bases. Derek Stroeing had a great start to his season last summer, but hurt his hamstring, look for him to have a good season. Chas Hennen, primarily the Martins DH had several big hits last summer.
Josh Stangler a long time player for the Martins plans to retire this season and Ben Schroeder be gone, but plans to return next summer. The Martins top two pitchers returning from last season are Jaylyn Arceneau and Scott Schlangen. Coming back out of retirement will be long time veteran Ryan Nett, the lefty has thrown many big innings over the past few years. Scott Lieser will join the Martins, he hasn’t played for a couple years, but he was a good pitcher in college and he played some for the Milwaukee Brewers organization. A pair on young high school players, Tanner Arceneau and Avery Schmitz, got some playing time last summer as freshman in school. Another new addition, Dan Sargent is a very good defensive player and he has hit a a pretty solid average. Brady Goebel and Ryan Messer two high players at Albany high will join the Martins this summer. Look for the Martins to make a challenge for one of those state tourney births with a solid additions they have made.
Elrosa Saints @ Greenwald Cubs
Spring Hill Chargers @ New Munich Silverstreaks
Meire Grove Grovers @ Lake Henry Lakers
Roscoe Rangers @ Richmond Royals
St. Martin Martins @ Farming Flames
VICTORY LEAGUE SOUTH
The Victory League consists of 18 teams; four divisions. Two teams from each division qualify for the Region 8C tournament. Four Teams qualify for the state tournament from the 8C Tourney. Pierz will be hosting the first weekend of the regional and in Avon the final two weekends. The Cuyuna Range team will not field a team this season and the Sobieski Skis moved up to Class B.
Freeport Black Sox
St. Stephen Steves
St. Wendel Saints
Manager: Reed Voit
The Lakers are expecting all their players to be back from last season. The Lakers expect these guys to lead their offense: Caleb Curry, Riley Voit and Taylor Holthaus. Matt Pickelmann and Kyle Collins are their two pitchers, look for them to throw a lot of innings.
FREEPORT BLACK SOX
Manager: Rob Mettenburg
The Black Sox will have good pitching depth this season, their top two starters, a pair of leftys, Mitch Reller and TJ. Frericks. They will have good support in the bullpen with veterans Craig Meyer and Nate Winter and another lefty Cody Rose. A pair of short relievers include Edwin Zambrana and Bryce Stahlboerger. The Black Sox’s offense should be led by Brandon Sawyer, Carter Sawyer and Jake Braegelman. They should have great support from Bryan Benson, Ike Sawyer, Nate Mettenburg and Trevor Sawyer. The Black Sox’s should have a very solid defense to back that veteran pitching staff. Brandon Sawyer a veteran catcher and Ike Sawyer and Nate Mettenburg to anchor the middle infield. They will have Bryan Benson, Carter Sawyer and Trevor Sawyer roaming the outfield.
Manager: Scott Binek
The Bears are looking forward to an exciting season with a young team, many will be in their 2nd to their 4th season. They are excited about the return of Derek Thielen being back from a knee injury last season. Austin Gerads will be one of the Bears leading hitters. Isaiah Folsom a graduate from Holdingford at be available full time. Sam Butler is planning to return, he should add a great deal to their pitching dept. Zack Bialka had a great season last summer, looking forward to another good season.Taylor NItz and Isaiah Folsom should give the Bears some added punch to their offense. Alex Lange a senior to be at Holdingford will be joining the Bears as a catcher. John Pilarski will retire from the baseball this season, he will missed roaming the outfield. The Bears are in a very tough division, but they are in high hopes to turn some heads this season.
ST. STEPHEN STEVES
Manager: Ben Omann
Manager: Tyler Huls
The Saints will have a new manager and just two players returning from last years team. Tyler Huls and Jack Opatz are the on ones that are returning. Long time veterans; John Pogatchnik, Greg Pogatchnik, Lee Maciej, Beau Maciej, Grant Pierskall, Trevor Van Heel have played for several years. They are looking for Jake Ethen, Jon Ethen, Steve Benkowski, Jordan Gombos and Brandon Bomgaards to join the Saints this season.