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Thursday, April 1, 2010

The 1990 independent and co-op minor leaguers

Features on each of the 1990 independent and co-op minor leaguers.


  • High-A - Reno Silver Sox (31)
  • High-A - Salinas Spurs (25) 
  • High-A - Miami Miracle (52)
  • Short-Season - Bend Bucks (32)
  • Short-Season - Erie Sailors (31)
  • Rookie - Gate City Pioneers (27)
  • Rookie - Princeton Patriots (30)
To Come:
  • Rookie - Salt Lake City 

Erie Sailors (31)

  1. Jay Boyce hit big home run at Boise; Saw five seasons over decade, 11/4/23
  2. Mark Cerny got good single at Billings; Played over two seasons, 10/30/23
  3. Stan Cook proved patient in first pro season; Career spanned two seasons, 10/1/23
  4. Brian Currie credited his father for being a lefty; Played four pro seasons, 10/8/23
  5. Gary Daniels worked to beat pitchers; Played single pro season, 10/28/23
  6. Mal Fichman's remembered for in-game mascot disguise, but career was much more, 11/4/23
  7. D.J. Floyd proved quite a player in high school; Saw four pro seasons, made single-A, 9/29/23
  8. Brian Golden geared up for baseball in college by swimming; Saw five pro campaigns, 9/30/23
  9. Van Golmont played final college year on road; Saw three pro seasons, made single-A, 10/31/23
  10. Mike Holland wasn't afraid to make mistakes; Made pros in single season, 10/7/23
  11. Mike Jockish pitched well in summer league; Played three pro seasons, 11/6/23
  12. Robbie Kemper worked on confidence in pros; Saw two seasons, 10/11/23
  13. Mike Larson gave good outing at Boise; Later served as MLB scout, 10/14/23
  14. Mike Lomeli tried to keep the ball down; Saw four pro seasons, 10/7/23
  15. Darrell MacMillan drew notice in high school; Played two pro seasons, 10/2/23
  16. Greg McCutcheon saw confidence boosted in college; Played three pro seasons, 10/9/23
  17. Lincoln Mikkelsen pitched until past age 40; Played around world, 10/21/23
  18. Tommy Mitchell saw six pro seasons, never wanted to leave game, 10/4/23
  19. Andy Postema relied on his faith over two pro seasons, 10/22/23
  20. Brian Reimsnyder hit well in college with Florida; Saw brief pro career, 10/7/23
  21. Jerry Rizza saw three seasons, then turned accountant without regrets; Made short-season, 9/28/23
  22. Ruben Rodriguez knew he had to work hard as pro; Saw three seasons, 10/7/23
  23. Joe Roebuck showed promise in independent ball; Played seven pro seasons, 11/5/23
  24. Shaun Sanderson served in utility role for Salt Lake City; Played two seasons, 10/8/23
  25. Mike Songini got contract, grinned ear-to-ear; Played four seasons, 11/11/23
  26. Al Stacey had big game for Geneva in 1989; Saw two pro seasons, 10/1/23
  27. Rod Tafoya played and then continued playing, into his late-50s, 10/12/23
  28. Dave Voit played four seasons in the minors and in Australia, 10/24/23
  29. Brad Weitzel coached in college, briefly in pros and scouted, 10/10/23
  30. Steve Woide turned to construction, then got signed; Played four pro seasons, 10/15/23
  31. Garry Wurm played summer ball, then got signed; Saw three seasons, 10/17/23

Reno Silver Sox (31)
  1. Barry Blackwell got off to a strong start at high-A in 1990; Saw three pro seasons, 11/27/20
  2. Mike Brown believed in his players over five seasons as manager; Also played, 12/18/20
  3. Felix Caraballo began as a baseball player, made high-A; Later settled in new job, became street sweeper, 11/19/20
  4. Joel Chimelis watched over Pete Alonso at AAA as a coach; Made bigs for two days as a player, 11/24/20
  5. Keith Charbonnet came through in clutch over 12 pro seasons; Made AA, played in independent ball, 11/22/20
  6. Gerry Clark had a live, young arm in college; Played four pro seasons, made high-A, 12/5/20
  7. Chris Cole showed good location in 1990 start; Saw two pro seasons, made high-A, 11/24/20
  8. Tim Donahue stayed positive over three pro seasons, made high-A; Later saw his son turn pro, 11/21/20
  9. Mike Easley hit go-ahead single in 1990 game; Saw four pro seasons, made AA, 12/20/20
  10. Tom Eiterman credited his college coaches for his quiet approach; Saw four pro seasons, made AA, 12/15/20
  11. Alex Ferran had a strong arm in outfield, later tried pitching; Made high-A, later played softball, 11/20/20
  12. Ben Gallo played seven seasons, then turned  coach at Reno, worked on pitcher concentration, 12/19/20
  13. Milt Harper worked to win over decade as pro, made AA, Taiwan; Died in Taiwan in 1993 at age 31, 11/20/20
  14. Todd Karli served as top-notch radio broadcaster for Reno, has since done same in TV sports, news, 11/21/20
  15. Jerry Maldonado earned Bronze Star in Vietnam, served as teacher and, for a time, with hometown baseball team, 12/16/20
  16. Carlos Mota took pride in his defense over 12 pro seasons; Made AAA, saw independent ball, 12/12/20
  17. Gary Nalls got off to slow start in second pro season; Played in six total, made AA, 12/6/20
  18. Jack Patton won executive of year honors in Cal League in 1989; Saw Reno, Riverside, Bakersfield, 12/19/20
  19. Greg Paxton threw strikes, let his defense work; Saw two pro seasons, made high-A, 12/5/20
  20. Cecil Pettiford helped Salt Lake to 1992 division title; Saw seven pro seasons, made AA, 12/15/20
  21. Clyde 'Pork Chop' Pough played in front of plenty over 16 pro seasons; Nickname proved memorable, 12/2/20
  22. Tad Powers played in four minors seasons and in Australia; Became a baseball entrepreneur, 11/26/20
  23. Rich St. John served as an Indians minors trainer two seasons; Started in college, 12/25/20
  24. Keith Shepherd got noticed by two stars, saw time in four ML seasons, 11/24/20
  25. Mike Soper threw sinkerballs and saved games; Saw six pro seasons, made AAA, 12/4/20
  26. Dean Treanor once served as an undercover police officer; Later served as major league bullpen coach, 12/9/20
  27. Bill Wertz made major league debut in hometown; Saw time over two big league seasons, 12/1/20
  28. Ken Whitfield wanted the chance to see if he was a major leaguer; Briefly made AAA, not bigs, 11/30/20
  29. Jeff Whitney returned to play after injury, year away; Saw three pro seasons, made high-A, 12/4/20
  30. Kaha Wong helped club to 1990 win, later helped his sons Kolten and Kean to bigs, 12/24/20

1990 Salinas Spurs (25)
1 - Paul AlegreKarate made Paul Alegre a more disciplined hitter, enough to play as a pro. He only played 17 games.
2 - Bill CarlsonA Giants scout gave Bill Carlson confidence. He played five seasons as a pro, never made AA.
3 - Carlos CarrascoCarlos Carrasco played eight seasons as a pro. He never made AA.
4 - Koichi EmotoKoichi Emoto had good experience in Japan, he then got experience in America, in the California League.
5 - Brent HahnBrent Hahn took advantage of his Japanese manager's coaching. He only played two seasons as a pro.
6 - Wayne HousieWayne Housie didn't care how he made the Red Sox, all that mattered was he was there.
7 - Scott JasterScott Jaster concentrated and spent nine seasons as a pro. He never made the majors.
8 - Hide KogaHide Koga's task with Salinas in 1990 was to mold his team of American and Japanese players into one unit.
9 - Takayuki KonoTakayuki Kono took lessons from his 15 seasons in Nippon Professional Baseball to years as a coach.
10 - Ed LandphereEd Landphere helped his Cal State-Santa Barbara team to a 1988 win. He played just 18 games as a pro.
11 - Quinn MarshQuinn Marsh helped break record streak of home state team. He played five seasons, never made the bigs.
12 - Seiichi MurakamiSeiichi Murakami saw time in 1990 on both sides of Pacific, at high-A in the U.S. and in Japan.
13 - Kenichi OtsukaKenichi Otsuka saw time in three Nippon Professional Baseball seasons, for a game apiece.
14 - Yoshiki OtsukaYoshiki Otsuka got into 4 NPB games in 1994, but hit two home runs. He played in eight seasons.
15 - Greg PageGreg Page did his part in a college tourney win. He played three seasons as a pro, never made AA.
16 - Corey PaulCorey Paul took four seasons off, then returned. And then he played in Japan.
17 - Jose PegueroJose Peguero took time off from baseball, he then returned and found independent ball.
18 - John ReilleyJohn Reilley was an absolute key for USC. He later played four seasons as a pro, but never made the majors.
19 - Pete RoweAll Pete Rowe wanted was a fair shot. He got it, but it didn't pan out and he never made the majors.
20 - Shigeki SasakiShigeki Sasaki picked up his second 1990 win in a July game. He only got three on the year, to 14 losses.
21 - James ShevlinJames Shevlin shared a name with a major leaguer. He didn't share the title major leaguer.
22 - Sean ThompsonA Giants scout thought Sean Thompson's future was at second base. Thompson only played two seasons as a pro.
23 - Kenichi UchiyamaKenichi Uchiyama spent time as the Salinas Spurs closer in 1990, he then pitched briefly in Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball.
24 - Kenichi YamanouchiKenichi Yamanouchi once hit three home runs over a two-game span. He made Nippon Professional Baseball for seven games.
25 - Shikato YanagitaShikato Yanagita got his strikeouts under control. He then made Nippon Professional Baseball over nine seasons.

Miami Miracle (52)

  1. Dave Alexander impressed as college walk-on; Saw two pro seasons, made high-A, 3/28/22
  2. Joe Beaulac signed his first pro contract by car headlight; Saw two seasons, made high-A, 4/2/22
  3. Bruce Bielenberg tried to be full of surprises as independent Miami GM; Iowa, NBA, 4/8/22
  4. Tommy Boyce had big night for Salt Lake in 1988; Saw three seasons, made high-A, 4/10/22
  5. Miah Bradbury waited to sign, then got drafted - by the Miami Miracle, 11/22/23
  6. Matt Cakora progressed enough to make AA in four pro seasons, 11/23/23
  7. Paul Carey put on hometown show in bigs; Saw 18 ML games, 11/25/23
  8. Sherri Clemans served as the Miami Miracle office manager, a member of the team's 'office personnel', 4/5/22
  9. Ben Creed started as Miracle sales director, later moved up to roles with the Marlins in bigs, 4/7/22
  10. Greg D'Alexander played to win, get noticed; Saw six independent seasons, 11/17/23
  11. Clay Daniel worked to make bigs over six seasons; Later turned scout, 11/26/23
  12. Tim Delgado pitched good ballgame after AA promotion; Saw six pro seasons, and Taiwan, 4/13/22
  13. Marty Durkin he had the green light in Legion ball; Saw five pro seasons, made high-A, 3/26/22
  14. Mike Easler helped Mo Vaughn become top hitter; Turned from long playing career to coaching, 4/15/22
  15. Mike Ericson helped his teams over five pro seasons then turned scout, 11/29/23
  16. Seth Fogler worked hard as a trainer in college, then worked hard as trainer over his career, 3/20/22
  17. Bob Fralick's playing career ended on Peleliu in WWII; His coaching, scouting career continued a lifetime, 3/26/22
  18. Librado Garcia helped Helena with 1987 win; Saw four seasons, 12/3/23
  19. Ed Garczyk hit a game-winning sacrifice at Salt Lake; Played two pro seasons, made high-A, 3/23/22
  20. Marc Giordano helped his college team to World Series; Later saw three pro seasons, made high-A, 4/22/22
  21. Pierre Gomez hoped to get back to pros after brief minors stint; He didn't return, 4/23/22
  22. Fredi Gonzalez showed work ethic early, took that to bigs as coach, manager with Marlins, Braves, 3/31/22
  23. Brad Gregory threw enough to make Florida State, pros; Saw two seasons, 12/11/23
  24. Jackie Gutierrez took his defense to time in six ML seasons; First Columbian regular in bigs, 3/27/22
  25. Lance Hudson played over a decade, sometimes got tagged a hot dog; Made AA, 4/19/22
  26. Jericho the Bat Dog got his break from Mike Veeck, became among team's most popular members, 4/2/22
  27. Anthony Kelley struck out Bo twice at AA; Saw eight pro seasons, made AAA, 4/2/22
  28. George Kerfut kept his independent team close, got win; Saw five pro seasons, made high-A, 3/22/22
  29. Dennis Kidd saw his speed as his strength; Took it to three pro seasons, made high-A, 3/26/22
  30. Tito Landrum felt like Ali after Orioles home run; Saw 9 ML seasons, 11/15/23
  31. Mike Lansing used mental approach to see nine ML seasons, 12/11/23
  32. Angel Lugo played his game over four pro seasons; Later turned youth instructor, 3/26/22
  33. Tim MacNeil turned solid reliever in college; Saw three pro seasons, made high-A, 4/16/22
  34. Javier Magria pitched well in high school, later turned pro; Injury slowed career, made high-A, 3/21/22
  35. Tim McKinley helped his pitchers in college and in the pros; Saw four pro seasons, made AA, 3/19/22
  36. Tom Michno proved himself in college, played six pro seasons, 12/9/23
  37. Billy Miller broke up a double play in college; Played two pro seasons, made high-A, 4/20/22
  38. Rhonda Miller helped welcome back an injured bat boy in 1992; Served as account executive, in promotions, 4/4/22
  39. Angel Morris made the majors late, as a bullpen catcher; Saw 12 pro seasons, made AAA as player, 4/1/22
  40. Jorge Pascual got out of jam at short-season; Saw four pro campaigns, made high-A, 3/29/22
  41. Kevin Ponder showed confidence on the field; Played four pro seasons, made high-A, 3/21/22
  42. Tommy Raffo paid his dues, missed bigs; Then turned college coach, 11/21/23
  43. Mike Reitzel had to wait after strong first spring; Saw three pro seasons, made high-A, 3/20/22
  44. Tim Rigsby kept up bigs hopes; Saw three seasons, made high-A, 11/27/23
  45. Charlie Rogers' fastball worked well in 1990 game; Saw six pro seasons, 11/18/23
  46. Rich Sauveur returned from college injury to see long pro career, 12/7/23
  47. Harry Shelton showed enough potential to turn pro; He made high-A, then turned scout, 3/20/22
  48. Chad Smith turned pro after high school no-hitter; Saw five seasons, 5/21/23
  49. Lee Smith hoped there was room for her; Went from assistant to independent GM to the NHL, 4/3/22
  50. Dave Taylor hit a late home run in college game; Saw two pro seasons, made high-A, 4/17/22
  51. Pat Varni hit well in college series; Later turned pro, saw two seasons, made high-A, 4/17/22
  52. Mike Veeck got his start in the bigs, then came disco, and success in minors with help from a dog and a pig, 4/9/22

Bend Bucks (32)
1 - Kelly Ahrens, Family Decision, 12/28/17
2 - Steve Avent, Game Winner, 1/10/18
3 - Bob Blankenship, Unusual Situation, 12/30/17
4 - Mike Bubalo, Unique Perspective, 1/7/18
5 - Bucky, Next Chicken, 1/4/18
6 - Bonell Chevalier, Improved Confidence, 12/26/17
7 - Gene Dusan, Something Different, 12/29/17
8 - Pedro Frias, Learned From, 12/20/17
9 - Jim Gibbs, Like This, 12/18/17
10 - Dan Henrikson, In Command, 12/23/17
11 - Shannon Hunt, Many Levels, 1/2/18
12 - Marty Hunter, His Approach, 12/21/17
13 - Mickey Hyde, In Play, 12/24/17
14 - Joe Klonoski, Praise Heaped, 12/19/17
15 - Sean Krokroskia, Top Competitor, 12/25/17
16 - Jason Lundgren, Bat Boys, 1/14/18
17 - Mario Lyons, Picked Off, 1/13/17
18 - Glenn McCormick, Early Success, 1/3/18
19 - Audy Mesa, His Tools, 1/12/18
20 - Russ Miller, Hurt Him, 1/14/18
21 - Lonnie Potter, Playoff Win, 1/9/18
22 - Amner Reyes, Let Him, 12/31/17
23 - Jose Reyes, Starting Adjustment, 12/27/17
24 - Pedro Roa, Run Scored, 1/8/18
25 - Gary Ross, In There, 12/17/17
26 - Matt Russell, Bat Boys, 1/14/18
27 - Todd Russell, Good Stuff, 12/18/17
28 - Lee Sammons, Played Ball, 1/11/18
29 - Doug Twitty, Prepared To, 1/13/18
30 - Dan Varnell, Came Through, 12/29/17
31 - Darrell Wagner, Unexpected Curves, 1/1/18
32 - Chuck Wanke, That Doubt, 12/22/17

1990 Gate City Pioneers (27)
1 - Keiji Abe, American Game
Keiji Abe knew it was important for his players to learn the American game. He coached in the U.S. and in Japan.
2 - Gary Adams, Needed Runs
Gary Adams turned pro out of high school. His pro career lasted three seasons.
3 - Itsuki Asai, Came Through
Itsuki Asai came through when Hiroshima needed him, 154 times as a pinch hitter over 13 seasons.
4 - Buck Atwater, Perfect Record
Buck Atwater helped his high school to a perfect record. He helped himself to three seasons as a pro.
5 - Eddie Bonine, Baseball Guy
Eddie Bonine was a baseball guy, a player and a coach. His son was a baseball guy in the majors.
6 - David Carter, Really Helped
David Carter had a brief playing career, but has had a long career as a coach in college.
7 - Keith Casey, Stayed In
Keith Casey stayed in the game after his brief career, became an instructor and a coach. 
8 - Akihiko Chiyomaru, Four Seasons
Akihiko Chiyomaru played in four NPB seasons in Japan. He got 16 at bats, no hits.
9 - Chris Emerick, All Around
Chris Emerick was a good all-around athlete in high school. He played baseball as a pro.
10 - Carlos Espinoza, Ended Up
Carlos Espinoza started his career in Mexico, and that's where he ended up. He never made the majors.
11 - Mike Fier, Back Out
Mike Fier got back on the field with an amateur senior league, after two seasons as a pro.
12 - Kelly Frederiksen, To Perfection
Kelly Frederiksen executed a pickoff fake to third to perfection. He played just a single season as a pro.
13 - Jim Heilgeist, Came Together
Jim Heilgeist had success on the football field in high school, then turned pro on the baseball field. He played two seasons.
14 - Tyrone Horne, Homer Cycle
Tyrone Horne hit for the home run cycle in 1998. No one had ever done it before and no one has done it since.
15 - Paul Hutto, Pretty Impressive
Paul Hutto impressed in high school. He played just two seasons as a pro.
16 - Hector Ortega, Knows What
Hector Ortega had confidence in the Cubs' Carlos Zambrano. He spoke as a scout and former player.
17 - Takashi Maema, Got There
It took Takashi Maema into his eighth pro season, but he finally made Nippon Professional Baseball.
18 - Tony Marabella, Natural Thing
Tony Marabella signed with his hometown Expos. He later appeared on Unsolved Mysteries after a fainting spell.
19 - William Martinez, Held Them
William Martinez came into a 1990 game, then held them enough for a win. He played four seasons, never got above single-A.
20 - Hideki Mizusawa, Did Play
Hideki Mizusawa never made it into a Nippon Professional Baseball game, but did play a season in the U.S.
21 - Doug Noce, College Success
Doug Noce helped his college team win the Division 2 World Series. He later played two seasons as a pro.
22 - Hector Rivera, Own Piece (Outfielder)
Hector Rivera the outfielder had a brief career, brief enough to miss one of his only shots at his own baseball card.
23 - Hector Rivera, Slowed By (Pitcher)
Hector Rivera pitched well at West Palm Beach, but, slowed by injuries, he couldn't keep it up at AA.
24 - Perry Sanchez, Two and Out
Perry Sanchez helped his college to its first College World Series. He played two seasons as a pro.
25 - Angelo Santiago, Triple Crown
Angelo Santiago held the South Jersey high school home run title. Until a guy named Mike Trout came along.
26 - Hiroyuki Satoh, Stopped Him
Hiroyuki Satoh robbed the batter of a hit in a 1990 game at Gate City. He then saw time in seven seasons in Japan.
27 - Trey Wilburn, Treated Rudely
Trey Wilburn was greeted rudely in an April 1990 game. He played just three seasons as a pro.

Princeton Patriots (30)
1 - Joel Adamson, Proved Himself, 7/25/17
2 - Ron Blazier, Schedule Set, 7/24/17
3 - Luis Brito, Good Living, 7/18/17
4 - Pat Cheek, Career Day, 7/8/17
5 - Jerome Edwards, More Aggressive, 7/28/17
6 - Sam Edwards, Top Priority, 7/10/17
7 - Jesus Garces, Young Age, 7/12/17
8 - Mario Garcia, His Goal, 7/17/17
9 - Eli Grba, Grew Up, 7/12/17
10 - Jeffrey Gunn, Supplied Offense, 7/11/17
11 - David Hammond, New Title, 7/13/17
12 - Brad Hassinger, Awesome Experience, 7/22/17
13 - Ramon Henderson, His Losses, 7/19/17
14 - Steve Hollins, Another Added, 7/23/17
15 - Brent Leiby, Entailed More, 7/15/17
16 - Bobby Llanos, Hot-Hitting, 7/9/17
17 - Ron Lockett, Didn't Stop, 11/1/15
18 - Bryan Manicchia, Got Noticed, 7/29/17
19 - Jeff Repoz, Fatherly Advantage, 7/16/17
20 - Troy Rusk, Fun Ride, 7/11/17
21 - Chad Silver, Wonderful Adventure, 7/23/17
22 - Terrell Smith, Another Sport, 7/22/17
23 - Chris Snyder, Next Starter, 7/15/17
24 - Jose Sosa, Those Numbers, 7/17/17
25 - Mark Steffens, Local Team, 7/16/17
26 - Bill Stohr, First Win, 7/13/17
27 - Francisco Tejada, Lead-Off Double, 7/9/17
28 - Julio Vargas, His Chances, 7/14/17
29 - Juan Villareal, Best Of, 7/14/17
30 - Matt Whisenant, Track Record, 7/8/17

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