At its Opening Day ceremonies last Saturday, the Boyertown Midget Baseball League named a ball field after Joe Stitzel, an instrumental player in the league's formation."My father would have loved this," Glenn Stitzel said. "It's fantastic."
Glenn Stitzel threw the ceremonial first pitch on the field in Boyertown Community Park, commemorrating the league's 56th season. His wife Terri, sons Casey and Corey and mother Jean cheered.
Players 5 to 18 years old from 51 teams paraded around the pool and lined the grass on the field.
Lee Mecherly, manager of the Junior Legion Bear-Cubs, received the first annual Boyertown Midget League's Volunteer Hall of Fame Award.
Organizers announced a new umpire association, which will be coordinated by Mike Fitzgerald.
After the league was founded in 1951 by Stitzel, Ralph Blank, Charles Rohrbach, Harold Reinert, Wilmer Steltz and Carl Stauffer, six teams competed on a field at Third and Franklin streets, next to Borough Hall and the Boyertown Post Office.
Glenn Stitzel recalled living across Third Street. At age 5, he would repair broken wooden bats and worn baseballs with nails and tape.
of innings I was a little wild, but then I started hitting my spots and had good defense behind me."
He also gave some insight as to what would be going through a pitcher's mind if he were to have a few hit batsmen, which Spring-Ford hurler Steve Young had when Houck and Bears second baseman Brent Ruminski were both plunked in the sixth inning.
"It kind of gets in your head a little bit, and you're thinking a lot. You're not really hitting your spots as well and it gets tough."
Houck also said that the team capitalized on Spring-Ford's mistakes by doing the little things, which they weren't doing earlier in the year. Instead, they were making the mistakes themselves.
This was a good win for the Bears, and it puts them in position to have a fight on their hands for first place in the PAC- 10 with both Owen J. Roberts and Spring-Ford. The fight has been a long one and the Bears certainly have not given up. It doesn't look like they're going to back down, either, with one week remaining in regular season.