I’m involved in the National Baseball Congress World Series the next couple of weeks and I thought that I would post a couple of notes on this tournament that would be of interest to some here. For those of you that are unfamiliar with the NBC World Series, it is the National Championship for summer collegiate baseball. Unfortunately, leagues like the Cape, Northwoods and TCL aren’t involved, but there is still a lot of talent around. It is a huge deal here in Wichita, since they have hosted the tournament since the 30’s, it has a huge following and the feature game usually has a packed house (Lawrence-Dumont Stadium, former home of the Wichita Wranglers) each night.
The most interesting note for most of those here is who can be found in the dugout of the Liberal (KS) Bee Jays. Former Ranger great and the manager of the Seattle Mariners opening day of 2007, Mike Hargrove is at the reigns for the oddly named Bee Jays. The story goes that he played for the Bee Jays when he was in college and stayed fairly close with some of the people in the community and when he decided to “retire,” they called him up and he said yes.
There are several people with Rangers ties involved in the tournament.
2008 43rd round pick Brian Feekin, a left-handed pitcher from Iowa Western Community College, is on the roster for the Beatrice (NE) Bruins. On the summer, in 43.1 innings he allowed 32 hits and 22 walks, while striking out 56 and posting a 1.05 ERA.
2001 6th round pick Ben Keiter, a right-handed pitcher from Wichita State, is with the Community Bank Cowboys (a WSU alumni team). There are no age restrictions as Keiter was released in 2004.
2007 22nd round pick Donnie Ecker, who was recently released, is a member of the Maxim (CA) Yankees.
2007 42nd round pick Jason Sowers, a first baseman/catcher from Cowley County Community College, is with the Newton (KS) Rebels after his release this season. In limited action with the Rebels this summer, Sowers posted a line of .286/.342/.429.
Local college players include
Baylor: Howell Finch, INF (Austin Gold Sox)
Texas A&M: Shane Minks, RHP (Beatrice (NE) Bruins), Darby Brown, INF (Beatrice),
Texas: Lee Johnson, RHP (Beatrice (NE) Bruins); Travis Tucker, INF, (Beatrice); Tant Shepherd, INF (Beatrice); Jordan Danks, OF (Beatrice); Cameron Rupp, C (Santa Barbara (CA) Foresters); Kevin Keyes, OF (Santa Barbara)
Rice: Jimmy Comerota, INF (Clarinda (IA) A’s); Mike Ojala, RHP (Santa Barbara (CA) Foresters); Matt Evers, RHP (Santa Barbara); John Hale, C (Santa Barbara); Chad Mozingo, OF (Santa Barbara)
Texas Tech: Tanner Rindels, OF (El Dorado (KS) Broncos)
Anyway, if you want you can follow the tournament, you can do it here. The team I coach is the Park City (KS) RANGERS.