Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Young Bucks donation link

Thursday, December 31st, 2015

Looking for a worthy cause

Fastpitchwest Forum Registration Open

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

Monday, January 18th, 1PM PDT – registration is open. If you’re among those who have been waiting to sign up, act quickly. Due to spammers, it will lock down shortly today.

Remember to look for the “welcome” email, forward to jim (at) fastpitchwest (dot) com with request to activate. (I need to do that manually), so please include your name and team affiliation.

Editor’s note: I received a number of emails asking me to add people to the forum – I can’t, as the process requires your confirmation when the “welcome/confirm” email comes back to your email address. Once that’s done, then I do need to activate you manually, but only after you’ve created the user name/login.

Click here to visit Fastpitchwest Forum.

Fastpitchwest Calendar

Sunday, December 25th, 2011

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Westerville Capitals

Friday, November 25th, 2011

Shown above are the Westerville Capitals, from Ohio. Click the photo to visit their team site on You’ll spot a few familiar faces in their photo galleries, pitcher Jimmy Yates, our good friend Rich Markham. Rich spent a few years in San Diego, before returning home to Ohio. No matter where he is, you’ll be sure to find some good fastpitch nearby.

Vin Scully gets the OK to return to the Dodgers in 2012 for 63rd season

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

Editor’s note: Say it again. Out loud. Sixty-third season. Remarkable.

From the Los Angeles Times

By Dylan Hernandez

The Dodgers could be even worse next season. Their ownership situation could remain unresolved and their stadium could remain half-empty.

But fans can take solace in at least this: Vin Scully will return for his 63rd season as the team’s broadcaster.

On a Friday night when Matt Kemp became the second player in franchise history to hit 30 home runs and steal 30 bases in a season, Scully shared his future plans with the Prime Ticket audience watching the Dodgers’ 6-1 victory over the Colorado Rockies.

“God’s been awfully good to me, allowing me to do the things I love to do,” Scully said on the telecast. “I asked him one more year, at least, and he said OK.”

The Dodgers issued a news release soon after, confirming the 83-year-old Hall of Fame broadcaster would be back. The team said Scully would again call all home and select road games.

Scully said he made the announcement on the air to avoid the kind of news conference he held the previous year to declare his intentions to return for the 2011 season.

“I hate to make a big deal out of it,” he said. “I’m not trying to be a Brett Favre or whoever else.”

Scully said he was lured back in part by the familiar faces at the ballpark.

“I enjoy the people,” he said. “I really like newspapermen. I enjoy talking and visiting. The winning and losing doesn’t bother me. I think it’s just the love of people. I just don’t know what I would do without it.”

Scully handles the play-by-play for all nine innings of his Prime Ticket and KCAL telecasts. The first three innings of the games are simulcast on KABC 790 AM. His 62 years with the Dodgers is said to be the longest tenure of any broadcaster in American sports history.

“He’s the face of the Dodgers,” Kemp said. “If he was to leave, I think everyone would miss that voice.”

Scully’s announcement came on the week that Times columnist T.J. Simers reported that the Dodgers asked their season-ticket holders to evaluate the Hall of Fame broadcaster.

The ensuing uproar resulted in Current TV political analyst Keith Olbermann showcasing Dodgers owner Frank McCourt on his “Worst Person in the World” segment.

Scully revealed his decision in the sixth inning, when the Dodgers were trailing, 1-0. The Dodgers scored six runs an inning later.

“Can he announce it again tomorrow?” Manager Don Mattingly asked. Click here to continue reading.

Women Win Battle of the Sexes II

Thursday, July 28th, 2011

From The Daily Herald, Chicago, IL

Bandits win “Battle of the Sexes II”
By Kerry Lester | Daily Herald
StaffContact writer

The Bandits’ Nicole Tromboli greets the Flyers players before the game Monday at Alexian Field in Schaumburg. MARK WELSH | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Girl power was in full force Monday night at Schaumburg’s Alexian Field.

Long after the Northern League Flyers had finished signing autographs, uniform-clad girls excitedly tossed bright yellow balls over the dugout of the National Pro-Fastpitch Bandits to their heroes.

“I want to be Jenny Finch!” 11-year-old Melissa Goldberg of Lake Zurich rattled excitedly, clutching a freshly signed ball inside her mitt.

“Yeah! Me too!” her 9-year-old sister, Rachel, seconded.

Around the stadium, dozens of park district and travel softball teams could be spotted in their respective jerseys watching the women take on the men in the “Battle of the Sexes II,” the local sequel to the 1973 tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs.

Attendance was so heavy that the original 7:05 p.m. game time was pushed back by 30 minutes.

The record-breaking crowd of 8,918 smashed the Flyers’ season average of 4,200.

“We thought it was the perfect end-of-season party,” said Steve Burns, coach of the 8- and 9-year-old Bartlett Park District Sidewinders, who had the chance to take the field with the Bandits during the national anthem.

The match grew out of a rivalry between Bandits President Bill Sokolis and his Flyers counterpart, Rich Ehrenreich, fueled by trash talking between the sexes.

But unlike the ’70s grudge match between the publicly sexist Riggs and grand slam titleholder King, women arguably had the upper hand. Or the underhand, to be more precise.

The “Battle” was played by National Fastpitch rules, including underhand pitching at roughly 65 miles per hour.

Bandits pitcher Eileen Canney, with a 9-1 season record, struck out three straight in the second inning: right fielder Victor Ferrante, left fielder Jeff Dunbar and designated hitter Richard Mercado.

As ringers, the Flyers brought in Australian softball pitcher Andrew Blackshaw and Amateur Softball Association Men’s Major Fastpitch pitchers Brian Tobin and Jason Iuli. Blackshaw plays for his country’s Queensland team and was recently named a member of the 2009 Australian national team.

The game remained scoreless until the third inning when Flyers’ third baseman Tony Mansolino hit a double to drive in two runs. The Bandits scored their first run in the fourth after Blackshaw, seemingly rattled, hit first baseman Samantha Findlay in the helmet with the bases loaded, minutes after he had pegged short stop Tammy Williams.

In the fifth, center fielder Rachel Folden hit a single down the right field line to drive in two runs. An unearned run on a pitcher’s error brought the score to 4-2, where it remained at game’s end.

Maybe the game proved right 8-year-old Katrina Smith of Bartlett’s theory that “girls rule and boys drool.”

The outcome, however, wasn’t the point of the evening for many fans.

“My son plays baseball, my daughter plays softball,” Dan Murin of Island Lake said. “Everybody’s into this.”

Editor’s note: Andrew Blackshaw the new Bobby Riggs? I’m not sure which amazes me more – the size of the crowd or that the men got beat. But they did. Here’s one to ponder: Is men’s fastpitch missing the boat by not involving women’s teams in or at our events?

Comments posted with the story below the jump. (more…)

West Texas Fastpitch

Sunday, July 24th, 2011

West Texas Fastpitch Unveils New Website.

Click here.

Final Chapter for The Morning Brief

Monday, November 29th, 2010

Well, here it is. The last Morning Brief post. Post number 4,943. The final chapter for our daily news blog on men’s fastpitch. We thank all of our readers, many of whom have been with us since that first post back on March 1, 2004. We have enjoyed it, more than you could know.

-Jim Flanagan
Editor, Morning Brief


San Bernardino CA Fastpitch Reunion

Thursday, November 25th, 2010

Reunion for men’s softball league: A reunion for Men’s Fastpitch softball is planned. Players who played in the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s are invited to join fellow players for a night of music and memories. Begins at 6 p.m. Saturday, The Gents Organization, 1462 Art Townsend Drive, San Bernardino. Cost: Information: Chris Laguna, 909-991-6251 or Johnny Guillen Jr., 909-772-2727.

Read more:

Dave Blackburn

Thursday, November 25th, 2010

* Please note * All future updates are being posted here:

Dave Blackburn is at the Kaiser hospital in Los Angeles, and can see visitors, and receive mail. You can send your letters or cards to:

Kaiser Permanent Los Angeles Medical Center
4867 Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles,CA 90027
(323) 783-4011
At this time Dave is in room 6541

(click to enlarge) (Photo by Tom Mc Conville, courtesy of Ron Rupp)

Latest Update (28) on Thanksgiving day, November 25, 2010 from me

I had a chance to visit Dave at Kaiser hospital last night and am pleased to tell you that he is getting great attention and care from his nursing staff and continues to mend. Considering the situation back in August, his progress to date has been remarkable.

One of the first things I noticed in his room were all of the cards, letters and photos from family and friends taped to the wall in his room. When you consider that his world for past three months has consisted of four walls, those kind of things mean a great deal to Dave, and give him the strength to endure the long process ahead.

He has an iPad near his bed, a gift from his Maccabi teammates, though he is still learning how to use it, and with his hands still healing, it may be a while before he is able to send e-mails, though I think he is able to receive and read them, or have them read to him. He’s in pain and discomfort from time to time, but it was reassuring to see him and hear that familiar voice. On this Thanksgiving day, I am grateful for friends like Dave, and to know that all of you are making a difference for him.

If any of you in the Southern California area have been considering a visit to see Dave, I am sure he would appreciate it. The hospital is easy to get to, just North of the 101, near Vermont and Sunset. (exit Vermont, and go a mile or two north (towards the mountains) to Sunset, turn left, and the hospital is on your immediate right. Due to construction at the hospital, it is easiest to park at the “4715 Sunset” building parking, and walk over to the “4867 Sunset” building where Dave is staying. The hospital takes up the entire block, but the parking driveway for the “4715 Sunset” building is on your immediate right as soon as you make the left turn from Vermont to Sunset. (Bring your drivers license, as they will ask you for it to get a visitor pass).

If any of you would like to record a message to be relayed to Dave, you can leave it on the Fastpitchwest voicemail, 562-726-3004, and I will play it for him at one of my next visits.

Likewise, if any of you would like to video a greeting for Dave, and send me the file, I will play it at one of my visits. Email to: jim (at)

Map of/to Kaiser Hospital:

View Larger Map

There is now a website set up for Dave Blackburn. Click here to view.

Note that you can sign up for email updates, and post notes in Dave’s guestbook as well.

We’ve tucked our earlier updates below the jump. (Rather than multiple postings, we’ll keep it all here in one, so that people with the link can return to it easily)

Editor’s note: We’ve set up an email address for friends wishing to pass along a note to Dave and/or Ronnie:

Yourfastballfriends (at)

(Send your email to that address, and we’ll pass the notes along to them. We’ve already mailed off a good size batch from many of you who took the time to write, something I am sure will lift their spirits, so keep those cards and letters coming)

If you are on Facebook, you can post a note here. (and we’ll pass it along)