Archive for September, 2007

2008 ISC II ToC Dates

Friday, September 28th, 2007

ISC II looking forward to return to Appleton, Wisconsin in 2008

Following two highly successful years in Kitchener, Ontario, the ISC II Tournament of Champions will be making a return to Memorial Park in Appleton, Wisconsin in August 2008.

“With the ISC World Tournament being played in nearby Kimberly for the record-setting 11th time, Appleton is the logical choice for ISC II with their fastball history and experience hosting international championships, including the 2003 ToC,” said ISC Executive Director Ken Hackmeister.

Appleton’s North Side Sizzle Softball Club will be the host for the ToC.

“We are excited about bringing high-level men’s fastpitch softball back to Memorial Park in Appleton,” said Reed Rudie, who will be the tournament director.

Games will start on Sunday August 10 with the ISC II championship game slated for Wednesday August 13. All games will be played in Appleton.

The tournament will feature 32 teams from across North America playing a three-game round robin schedule in eight pools of four teams each. All teams will then move into a single elimination playoff bracket with seeding & byes based on the round robin pool standings. The third & fourth place teams will play crossover games in the first round. Second-place teams will earn a first round bye, while first-place teams will get a bye directly into the third round.

To qualify for the ToC, teams must win or be the highest finishing ISC II team in one of the ISC’s qualifier tournaments. Team automatically become eligible for an invite berth by playing in one of the tournaments. A full list of 2008 qualifiers will be released in the next couple of months.

For more information, please contact:

Jim Williamson
ISC II Vice President

Blair Setford
ISC II Commissioner


Reed Rudie
North Side Sizzle Softball Club

Editor’s note: Appelton, Wisconsin is about a two hour drive northwest of Milwaukee, as shown in the map below.

View Larger Map

So Cal Bombers Head to Mexicali for Copa Dum

Friday, September 28th, 2007

Designated Hitter par excellence Charlie Pena will be with the So Cal Bombers this weekend in Mexicali, Mexico for the COPA DUM tournament. Charlie is shown above as a member of the Baytown Hawks, picking up the hardware at this year’s Latin tournament in Texas where he was named Most Valuable Player.

Reports have it that Rob Schweyer (currently on the cover of will pitch for the Bombers, along with Sean Whitten, while Sebastian Gervasutti and Jeremy Manley will land in San Diego today and head south east to Mexicali to suit up for a rival team. Sonny Perkins is also reported to be headed to the tournament, though no word yet on who he will be pitching/playing for. A tournament slated for the Dominican Republic was pushed back to a later date, to enable players to attend both events.

We hope to receive reports on this one and will update readers as information becomes available.

Mexicali, Mexico, is just across the US border from Calexico, about 2 hours east and a bit south of San Diego, as shown in the map below. (The Team USA Olympic Training Facility West is located in Chula Vista, just south of San Diego and also shown on map)

View Larger Map

A-1 Bombers?

Thursday, September 27th, 2007

The rumor mill is churning again. The latest, from a reliable source:


Others note the absence of the Hunt brothers, Chris and Tim, from the recently released Taylor Farms Lumberking roster and speculate about what that means.

Taylor Farms Lumberkings Unveil 2008 Roster

Wednesday, September 26th, 2007

See update below, added September 26, 2007

The California LumberKings and Taylor Farms have joined forces for the upcoming ISCII season. LumberKings Manager, Dave Weldin and Taylor Skipper, Ron Guzman has concluded talks that were started some years ago.

To continue to play at the ISC-ISCII level, we felt it was in the best interest for both the California LumberKings and Taylor Farms to combine. Without this fusion of the two teams it was doubtful that either team would be able to compete at this level.

The LumberKings looked hard into competing at the ISC level and fell short of the funding goal needed to compete. In addition to finances, both teams are losing players from their 2007 rosters for a variety of reasons.

The newly formed Taylor Farms LumberKings have finalized their roster for the upcoming 2008 season. The roster will consist of one of the top pitching staffs at the ISCII level. In addition to pitching we feel that our offense and defense has improved from the 2007. All of the players on this year’s roster come from two of the top three teams from last years ToC. Again, we would like to thank all of our players that played with us the past few seasons. Each and every one made our team a success!

Here is the 2008 roster for the Taylor Farms LumberKings:

P-Mike Egerdeen
P-Darren Strang
P-Dave Drotzman
C-Jeff Twist
INF-Eddie Martin
INF-Greg Hicks
INF-Pat Fuentes
INF-Shawn Ching
INF-Greg Oliver
INF/C-Troy Parker
INF/OF-Chris Baker
INF/OF-Ron Guzman
OF/C-Jon Nimmo
OF-Shawn Mandolesi
OF-Brian Teeters

Update: September 26, 2007

An observant reader provided us with this analysis of the new roster, and which team they played on in 2007:

From the Lumberkings
P-Mike Egerdeen
P-Darren Strang
OF/C-Jon Nimmo – All-Tournament DH – 2007 ISC II T of C
INF/C-Troy Parker
INF-Greg Hicks
OF-Brian Teeters

From A-1/Taylor Farms
P-Dave Drotzmann – All-Tournament Pitcher – 2007 ISC II T of C
C-Jeff Twist – All-Tournament Catcher – 2007 ISC II T of C
INF-Eddie Martin
INF-Pat Fuentes
INF-Shawn Ching
INF-Greg Oliver
INF/OF-Ron Guzman
OF-Shawn Mandolesi

New Addition

INF/OF-Chris Baker

3 Nation Tournament in Saskatoon

Tuesday, September 25th, 2007

3 Nations Cup Tournament July 4,5,6, 2008


Saskatoon will be hosting a 3 Nations Cup Tournament July 4,5,6, 2008. (NOT JUNE 4-5-6)

Teams participating will be Team Canada, Team Japan and Team USA. More information will follow in October.


Keith Mackintosh
Fundraising Manager N.SK.
Ducks Unlimited Canada
Saskatoon SK.
PH# 306 665 7355
Fax# 306 931 4108


Legends of Fastball Classic 2008

Tuesday, September 25th, 2007


The Legends of Fastball Classic is scheduled for May 30, 31and June 1, 2008 at the Woodstock and District Community Complex, Woodstock Ontario

Entry fee : $500

Travel award : $3000 ( 1st ) , $1500 ( 2nd) and $500 ( 3rd and 4th )

This is a 2 division round robin format tournament with a single knock-out playoff round. The tournament has attracted some great teams in the past 4 years including Broken Bow, Patsy’s, Orillia, Kitchener,St.Thomas, Jarvis, Heflin, Midland and Innerkip to name a few. The competition is always first rate and the Legends ceremony on Saturday afternoon honours those players and softball people who have made significant contribution to the sport on and off the field.

The Woodstock complex is a diamond in the rough that has drawn rave reviews over the years for its beauty and ideal back drop for world class fastball.

Woodstock is ideally situated between Detroit and Toronto and is only one and a half hours from Buffalo. It is just 20 west of Kitchener on highway #401.

Interested teams should contact : Larry Lynch, 206 Moore Avenue, Kitchener Ontario N2G 4G7
( 519 ) 579-2903. Llynch9(at)

Ed. note: I always hear that Crosby Stills Nash & Young song when I read about this one…..”By the time we got to Woodstock…..”


International transfusion

Tuesday, September 25th, 2007

via Member of the Sun-Times News Group

International transfusion

Its popularity waning in recent decades, fastpitch softball teams like Dolan and Murphy use recruitment of international players to keep the sport alive in United States

September 23, 2007
BY JOHN SAHLY Staff Writer

Jonas Mach, a 23-year-old softball player who throws a fastball hitters have less than four-tenths of a second to react to, lives in a pink room.

Not just pink; suffocating pink. Pink tulips in untouched parts of nature aren’t this pink.

To top it off, the light-switch cover includes a pastel-colored bunny painted on it, matching the banner that crawls across the room.

For the Czech Republic-native Mach, this pink room is not home. Neither is the more spacious but just as messy room where his Argentinean teammate Juan Potolicchio spends his time.

Both young men are international fastpitch softball pitchers who play for Aurora’s Dolan and Murphy team. They are part of a large contingent of foreign players who, for various reasons, come to the United States and Canada to play softball in the summer.

Mach’s room — cluttered with clothes, softball equipment and a single mattress — can’t fit more than a handful of people comfortably. The bedroom once belonged to a young girl. For Mach, it’s a place to sleep and a place to hang out with Potolicchio and teammate Jason Iuli — who all live together in the Aurora house during their summers in the U.S.

“At first, when I walked in and I saw the pink walls I thought it was a joke,” Mach said.

But the fastpitch community knows Mach’s fastball and Potolicchio’s riser are no laughing matter.

The two are a major part of the sport’s biggest trend. Two pitchers in a pitchers’ game; two international players in an increasingly-international game; two young competitors in a game desperate to get younger.

Two players who represent how fast-pitch softball — a sport few in the public know about and even fewer pay attention to — not only survives, but thrives in its own small way.

Ken Vierling Named New ISC II Umpire in Chief

Tuesday, September 25th, 2007

Ken Vierling of Fridley, MN has been appointed the new ISC II Umpire In Chief, replacing Rick Havercroft who resigned last spring.

Ken has an extensive and varied background in both softball and life. An umpire since 1975, he has umpired at the highest levels of both ISC and ASA including three ISC World Tournaments, one ISC II Tournament of Champions and eight ASA men’s nationals. He is a Division I NCAA umpire in both the Big Ten and Missouri Valley Conferences. Administratively, he is a Board member of the largest collegiate umpire association in America. He also has extensive experience as a tournament and league Umpire In Chief.

The 51 year old Vierling is employed in the printing business and handles both sales and estimating for Gopher State Litho of Minneapolis.

Ken is a performer with an impressive resume’ as a stand up comedian, actor and singer. He is actively involved in ten-pin bowling and currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Minnesota State Bowling Association. His current personal bowling average is an impressive 205.

As the ISC UIC, Ken will work closely with ISC UIC Bruce Bierman and ISC DUIC, Les Novak is overseeing the ISC umpire program. These three individuals meet annually in January to select the umpires for the upcoming season’s ISC World Tournament and ISC II Tourament of Champions. They are also responsible for all playing rule interpretations, including oversight of the ISC approved bat list provided by the International Softball Federation (ISF).

Ken’s appointment to this very responsible position is endorsed by both Bruce Bierman and Les Novak as well as the ISC Executive Committee.

We welcome and congratulate Ken Vierling as the new ISC II Umpire In Chief.

Ken can be reached at

I. S. C. World Tournament Video Archives Now Available

Sunday, September 23rd, 2007

I. S. C. Video Archives Now Available

The Streaming and Broadcast Committee of the International Softball Congress is proud to announce that video archives of 37 ISC World Tournament fastball games are now available for on-demand web viewing. Starting with the championship game in the 2004 ISC World Tournament from Fargo, ND, the archival video library includes three games from the final day of the ISC World Tournament in 2005 from Eau Claire, WI., and continues through games from the 2007 World Tournament.

The expanded coverage of World Tournament games began in 2006, made possible by the design and procurement of a live video tele-production system, and by the subsequent launch of ISC-TV. Fifteen games are archived from 2006, and eighteen games are archived from the recently completed 2007 ISC World Tournament in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada.

To view the games in the archive, go to the ISC Home Page,

and click the Sportsjuice / ISC icon at the bottom of the page.

To select a game from the video archive library, either select the most recent archive listed above the archive window, or click the down arrow in the archive window, and select the game of your choice. Viewers must have the Microsoft Windows Media Player installed on their computer, to play the ball game videos. To change between Full Screen mode, or other selectable video sizes, right click in the video image and then select. Once the game starts, to scroll to any point in the video, just click, hold, and drag the video progress slider button to any desired point in the time line.

The best news of all is that the on-demand archives do not appear to suffer from any of the buffering issues that plagued some fans during the streaming of ISC’s live broadcasts from the annual ISC world tournament.

“This public video archive of elite men’s fastpitch softball games is the largest collection in the history of the sport”, said Dave Blackburn, ISC-TV Producer. “It is the result of the hard work and collaborative effort of numerous dedicated ISC commissioners, specialists, and volunteers.”

“Our dual objectives are to satisfy the interests of fastball’s existing fan base while also exposing the sport to those who have not seen elite men’s fastball games of ISC World Tournament caliber”, Blackburn stated. “Hopefully, this exposure will help inspire a new generation of young male athletes to participate in the great sport of fastball,”

ISC Executive Director Ken Hackmeister was equally delighted. “The ISC is very happy to be able to provide this extensive video access to World Tournament games from 2004 through 2007. We are grateful to Dave Blackburn, and we commend his professionalism and dedication in making these archives a reality. In addition to greatly expanded sport exposure, these archived games could and should be utilized by teams as an outstanding player recruitment tool.”

In a related note, Dave Blackburn has announced that the number of hits for this year’s live broadcasts of I.S.C. World Tournament games totaled 58,963 a substantial increase from the 45,000 such hits during the 2006 World Tournament.

Comments, questions, or suggestions should be sent to

Ontario Challenge Cup

Saturday, September 22nd, 2007

For our ISC II fans, the 5th Annual Ontario Challenge Cup is underway this weekend in Innerkip.

For all the scores and stats, see our brother blog The Deuce.

Past winners of the Challenge Cup have included Norwich Razorbacks, Port Elgin Blue Devils, Toronto Champion Indians and Kitchener Outlaws.

ISC Regional Commissioner Joe Todd is on site along with Kyle Smith and Jim Marr. There are 12 teams from 8 leagues across southern Ontario competing for a berth in the 2008 ISC II Tournament of Champions in Appleton, Wisconsin.