Kingsport Times-News from Kingsport, Tennessee on June 20, 1989 · 16
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Kingsport Times-News from Kingsport, Tennessee · 16

Kingsport, Tennessee
Issue Date:
Tuesday, June 20, 1989
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f - ( 8B Kingsport Times-News Tuesday June 20 1989 Despite losing Mets still should have good team About half way through the Kingsport Mets’ opener with the Bristol Tigers on Monday night Mets’ scorekeeper Bruce Tranbarger looked up from his scorebook and commented: “I think we’re going to have a pretty good team” My first reaction was “How can he say that they way this team is hitting” But the more I watched the Mets play the more I agreed with him For Kingsport it was good pitch good field and almost literally no hit The Mets had two hits only one of them a no-doubter But the same could be said for Bristol The Tigers got just enough hitting to scratch out two runs Six hits is nothing to write home about Both hitting performances could be somewhat blamed on last week's weather Neither team was able to hold batting practice from Tuesday through Friday because of persistent rain “It was hard for us to get in some batting practice” said Kingsport manager Jim Eschen “But their pitching had something to do with what happened tonight It was outstanding It was just their good pitching and out lack of hitting That put together spells shutout “But we’re certainly far from pushing the panic button We made some errors but you can’t fault the players because the infield was real wet” Despite three errors the Kingsport defense looked sharp Shortstop Tim Buhe showed a rocket arm The error he made came when he lost' his grip on a wet ball then threw wildly He made several other sparkling plays But perhaps no one in the game made a better defensive play than did Met second baseman Alberto Diaz He raced from his position half way between first and second to field Mike Rendina’s slow roller in front of second and threw off balance to get Rendina at first in the seventh inning “That was a nice play” said Eschen “He’ll be a good player for is And I think Buhe will be a good shortstop” Buhe was the All-Big Ten shortstop this past spring while playing for Northwestern University Eschen said when you get good pitching and good fielding you’re in good shape “We’ll find a way to score runs” said Eschen If it’s any consolation last year’s Appalachian League champions started off 1-5 but snapped back to win the title notes 1988 manager Bobby “ Floyd who was on hand to receive his championship ring along with four returnees from last year’s squad president and general manager Dottie Elsea and some senior members of the Mets’ Boosters Club “We didn’t know what we had in those early games” said Floyd who is now the Mets’ minor league coordina-tor v “That might be” said Eschen when told “but I certainly hope we don’t start out 1-5 this year” Eschen said he was generally hap py with his pitching which struck out 9 Tigers batters and walked just 5 Bristol pitching struck out 8 and walked just 2 “I was happy with Andy Fidler” said Eschen “And I thought Ed Vazquez did a decent job Hector Carrasco threw a few more pitches than we’d have liked but he’ll be fine too” Carrasco showed some fire He struck out seven batters in the 4 2-3 innings he pitched Mike Lehnerz the Mets’ No 9 draft pick last year will be the starter tonight for Kingsport when the teams meet again A large banner that reads: “1988 Appalachian League Champions” was presented to the Mets before the game It was flown from the center field flag pole during the game and will be flown there all season a reminder of last year’s success Elsea was upset with the lighting situation Despite promises to make improvements on the field Elsea noted that not one burned-out light bulb was replaced at J Fred Johnson Stadium for the opener Elsea had refused in May to sign the contract with the city until a promise was made to improve the lighting situation So far all that has been done to improve the lighting is that the bases for the lights have been measured Not a single bulb has been replaced — which would seem to be the most logical first step “I even asked if they could take bulbs from the two light poles at the end of the stadium that weren’t being used and replace the burned-out bulbs on this end and they refused” said Elsea adding: “I’m embarrassed to have the Bristol Tigers come in and -see the field this way You need a flashlight between the third-base du-gout and home” Floyd says as bad as the lighting might be here he thinks it’s worse some other places in the league — particularly in Pulaski “I was surprised to see Dale Long say the lighting in Kingsport was the worst” said Floyd “One time in Pulaski Dale was taking a reading with his light meter and I asked him if he’d like a flashlight so he could read it” Ron Bliss is executive sports editor of the Times-News Times-News Photo — David Orace Appy Champs Kingsport Met returnees James Harris (34) and Alberto Castillo (33) and batboy Tyler Hobbs look at their 1988 Appalachian League championship rings which they received before Monday night’s opener Bristol defeats Mets in opener P5WB Boxsco Bristol 2 Kingsport 0 Continued from page 8B Kingsport’s only threat of the night was mounted in the seventh Tim Buhe and Alberto Diaz drew leadoff walks but Harris fanned Minnifield went out with a infield fly and Castillo sat down on strikes “That was our shot” said Eschen Bristol took a lot of shots at ‘Houdini’ Carrasco for three innings The Tigers stranded two in the first two in the second and one in the third The Kingsport righty showed his character by making some good pitches when he had to Finally- in the fifth the scoreless tie was broken Ken Lewis walked and stole second and scored on Carlos Maldonado’s single to center In the sixth Bristol made it 2-0rKasey McKeon doubled to right and moved to third on a wild pitch McKeon scored when Juan Reyes’ liner hit just inside the leftfield line and went for a triple Bristol Ibarger ss Mdonado 3b Rendina lb Pmberton rf Kinyoun c ' Caines if McKeon dh Reyes 2b Lewis cf Davis cf Totals Kingsport abrhbi 5 0 0 0 Thornton cf 5010 Guzlk cf 3 0 0 0 Buhe ss 3 0 2 0 Diaz 2b 4 0 0 0 Harris dh 4 0 0 0 Mnnfieid If 3 12 0 Cstilloc 3 0 10 Davis lb 3 10 0 McClinton rf 0 0 0 0 Opowicz rf Hartman 3b 33 2 6 2 Totals ab r h bi 2 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 3 0 10 3 00 0 3Q10 2 0 0 0 1 O 0 0 3 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 21 2 0 000 011 000-2 McKeon Carnes Bristol J Rodriguez (W 1-0) E Rodriguez Kingsport Carrasco (L 0 1) Vasquez Fidler Sample 5 4 AV) IVi 2 1 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 WP— Vasquez PB— Castillo A— 1352 Lopez sparks Braves 13-6 From staff reports Mandarich headed for ring? Associated Press MILWAUKEE — Boxing promoter Don King and billionaire Donald Trump have shown new interest in a proposed fight between Tony Mandarich the Green Bay Packers’ top draft pick and heavyweight champion Mike Tyson an agentsays — Agent Vern Sharbaugh who represents- Mandarichsaid he-met for more than two hours last week with King at the boxing promoter’s Orwell Ohio headquarters “I was encouraged simply by the fact that we met” Sharbaugh said in a Milwaukee Sentinel interview publilshed Monday “If King wasn't at all interested we never would have met” — Bill- Cay ton -Tyson’s-said in estranged manager New York Monday that “there’s not a chance the fight will happen It’s ridiculous He can’t fight He’s never fought” Tyson is in litigation to break' his managerial contract with Cayton but as of now Cay-ton must approve Tyson’s opponents - — PULASKI — Javier Lopez a rookie catcher from Puerto Rico hit a grand-slam homer in the first inning to start the Pulaski Braves on their way to a 13-6 victory Monday night over Wytheville’s Cubs Four Pulaski pitchers including former David Crockett High School ace Greg Arnold combined efforts for a five-hit ter Bluefield 8 Princeton 2 PRINCETON W Va — Tom Martin pitched a two-hitter and struck out nine batters in the first six innings and teammate Keith Schmidt led a nine-hit Bluefield attack with two homers to drive in five runs in an 8-2 victory over Princeton Schmidt hit a solo homer in the second inning and finished off the Pirates with a grand slam in the seventh Reliever Bob Wheatcroft finished up for Bluefield enabling Bluefield pitching to turn in an opening-game three-hitter Delby Santiago first of two Princeton pitchers was the loser Burlington 6 Martinsville 0 MARTINSVILLE — Nolan Lane went 3-for-5 including a double and Mike Davis and Jesse Levis each homered to power the Burlington Indians to a 6-0 win as three pitchers — Andy Baker Scott Neill and Roberto Rivera — collaborated on a three-hitter Davis had a three-run homer Cummins currently enjoying discovery of ‘new’ sports Continued from page 6B Cummins was ranked seventh on the list of winningest active coaches in the nation when he retired from the gridiron after the 1987 season He still coaches volleyball and tennis “These are sports” he said “that I should have discovered years ago” The man who was honored in 1987 as National Coach of the Year is equally proud of the 21 district sportsmanship trophies won by Clintwood during his ca- reer His fatherly advice for any young man who plans to enter coaching is quite simple "Take a job buy a house join the church and a civic club or two and get yourself a cemetery plot That should tell the town your outlook is long-range” ( The World War II paratrooper proved to be a strong influence on the athletes he developed After an outstanding high school career as a slender end at East Stone Gap US Army boot camp was a breeze for him Cummins almost landed the Gate City football job ahead of close friend Harry Fry but was lured away from his Blue Devils assistant position to become the Green Wave’s head coach in 1953 In his first seven seasons Cummins’ teams lost only 11 games In coaching two generations of players he turned out many stars The one who stood out above the rest was Johnny McFall the guy who took the late Roy Mac Mullins’ place after his tragic death McFall scored 70 touchdowns passed for four others kicked 103 extra points and 10 field goals made 193 tackles and averaged 412 yards as a punter and 533 yards on kickoff returns McFall also blocked three punts intercepted eight passes recovered six fumbles and all the while was working on an A-average in the classroom His total point production was 609 points including 309 in one season and be had 5558 total career yards On Nov 1 1975 McFall romped for 50 points in a 62-6 win over arch-rival Appalachia Every member of Cummins’ coaching staff during the golden era of 1974-76 had played on a championship squad at Clintwood Cummins 64 lives practically within a touchdown pass of the CHS campus which is adorned by a $1 million football facility Not far up the street the Hardee’s restaurant decor is dominated by murals of Green Wave teams in action Sixty-nine of his former players have entered the coaching field Cummins always rewarded his youngsters’ efforts with playing time "If we had 60 boys to come out for the team” he said “they all would get to play Usually all 60 would be still in uniform at the end of the season unless they got injured” The community showed its appreciation of Cummins by donating $137000 toward construction of the 6000-square-foot fieldhouse by naming the stadium in his honor and by purchasing him a green Cadillac Before Cummins Stadium was built in 1959 his teams played on the old Clintwood Fairgrounds where clay sand and rock made life rather tough on game nights Reflecting on his career Cummins underlined the many friendships he has cultivated in coaching as his greatest satisfaction “It’s been the human relationships — with players coaches game officials and members of the news media — that I treasure most” He will retire from the faculty after the 1989-90 school year Cummins authored a book “Attack and Pursue: 50 Defense” and has had several articles on techniques published He coached in three VHSL All-Star games and was a respected clinician ( He applied many of the things he’d learned at clinics around the country to reshape in the bleachers Switzer frustrated over NCAA rules 3B— Reyes SB— Castillo Lewis Bristol Kingsport E— Carrasco Buhe Diaz DP— Kingsport 1 Bristol 1 LOB— Kingsport 3 Bristol 9 ‘2B— IP HRER BB SO in the eighth Levis hit a solo shot J Chris Lowe a Johnson City native got two of the Phillies’ three hits Neill in relief of Baker who struck out six batters picked up the win The Phillies did not get a hit until the sixth inning Martinsville starter Charles Hurst got tagged with the loss — Levis and John Cotton each contributed to the 11-hit Burlington attack with two apiece ’BetsyJohnson City ppd JOHNSON CITY — The Eliza-bethtonJohnson City Appalachian League game was postponed because of rain and will be irtade up July 25 as part of a douhleheader the style of play in the Lonesome Pine District “I picked up a little” he said “here and there” One of his favorite coaches was Oklahoma’s Bud Wilkenson Cummins played at Milligan College and Emory & Henry College and furthered his education at Union University Appalachian State University and the University of Virginia Cummins is past president of the National Federation of High School Coaches and served on its board of directors for eight years Cummins twice presided over his town’s Kiwanis Club and was selected Kiwanian of the Year in 1972 He helped organize the $200000 Happy Valley recreation complex near Clintwood Formation of the VHSL Hall of Fame has been in the works for several years Continued from page fi f “lather dies many miles away and the son has no money for a plane ticket home to the funeral?” Switzer was under fire even before the action by the NCAA !n 4"2"st a' book by former Sooner linebacker Brian tsoswortn Ujajxj plavprs cainp and fired guns at the football players’ dormitory Bosworth who left the team after the 1986 season also referred to NCAA violations and said the Oklahoma football program bordered on anarchy Switzer naa eaneu uosworui s plat m cpncoliqwolipm iir The state’s largest newspapers called for Switzer’s resignation after five of his players were charged with felonies earlier this year Switzer said he was resigning wih great sadness He said no one asKeu iiniru leaigu “It -Is m decision- I tnougnt what is best for the program is what I am doing today” “I leave with pride in our football program but my greatest pride is in the young men who have come through this program who uovu woi Jvcd dO lldiU Davis turns in impressive numbers in spring outing “OK from now on anything hit in the water is a ground-rule double ” Continued from page 6B expect down there” said Davis “The fact I was the only first base-man taken by New York in the draft helped take some pressure off me" Still Davis struggled He hit just 212 with a solo home run He’d been known as a power hitter in high school belting nine home runs batting in 35 runs and batting 350 while leading his team to a third-place finish in the state tournament and a 28-4 overall record Davis showed improvement in extended spring training batting 300 and belting four home runs “I learned a lot last year and one year’s experience really does help” says Davis The short fence in right field at J Fred Johnson Stadium is inviting to Davis but he’s trying to keep things in perspective “I like that fence but I’ll have o try to keep it out of my mind” he says Davis says the biggest thing he needs to work on is his defense He made 11 errors lat year Football was the big sport in Merritt Island and Davis’ baseball coach was also the football coach at the school He pressured Davis to come out for football but Davis declined “My dad told me to stick to just one sport” said Davis “He thought if I spred myself out I would hurt my chances” Davis wasn’t the only player drafted off his high school team Carl Hanselman signed with the San Francisco Giants Both are hoping to add to the Merritt Island tradition by putting their names alongside the James Perdues and Hurdles of the sports world S

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