Here is a look at the Eastern Jackson County American Legion baseball teams in 2011.
Here is a look at the Eastern Jackson County American Legion baseball teams in 2011:
BLUE SPRINGS POST 499/FIKE
Top returnees: Anthony Dutcher, Stephen Montisano, Sam Morman, Jordan Oddo, Shay Parra, Josh Smetana.
Newcomers: Cody Cloughley, Jared Ginter, Dalton Engman, Dylan Farrel, Logan Taylor, Mark Montisano, Luke Nix, Ruben Paniagua, Spencer Picard, Brett Valentine.
Coaching staff: Jim Moran, manager; Matt Hagerty, Randy Keele, John Mayer, Travis Reeder, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “We will be trying to replace four very consistent and reliable pitchers, three to age and one to surgery. Our defense should be solid, while the offense is unproven at the Legion level. Last year’s success came from all of the players staying together as a team. We had no me’s and I’s. That is the key to a fun and winning summer.”
2010 finish: 51-10 overall, 25-3 and first place in Zone 2 East, state runner-up and 22nd annual Wood Bat Tournament champion.
2011 outlook: A solid returning nucleus should enable Fike to retain its winning ways. The 51-10 all-time best 2010 record may be difficult to match, though.
BLUE SPRINGS ROD’S SPORTS ATHLETICS
Top returnees: Tyler Barth, Brian Burasco, Jay Corwin, Alex Duvall, Wilson Lamb, Cole Payne, Kyle Roberts, Spencer Shewandt.
Newcomers: Brett Barbeck, Corbin Hare, Zach Lindberg, Matt Morrison, David Stoder, Jacob Schwandt, Matt Varley.
Coaching staff: Mike Rooney, manager; Phil Caldarella, Jack Gillis, Clyde Kubli, Brad Mayfield, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “This is the youngest A’s team ever with two freshmen, six sophomores, seven juniors and one college player. We should be very competitive and young but talented.”
2010 finish: 31-21 overall, 18-8 for second place in Zone 2 East.
2011 outlook: The A’s likely will extent the impressive streak of not experiencing a losing season.
HI-BOY DRIVE IN/POST 340
Top returnees: Austin Atterbury, Cody Crabb, Chance Divers, Justin Doss, Joel Frias, Spencer Gearhart, Brett Graham, Andrew Jennings, Carlos Ramirez, Devin Shores, Ryan Stick.
Newcomers: Luke Crabb, Eric Gant, Derek Pike, Darby Raines.
Coaching staff: Mike Kline, manager; Scott Cassidy, Jeff Gearhart, Gene Ryals, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “Overall depth and catching are strong points. But we lack power.”
2010 finish: 26-23 overall, 13-13 for seventh place in Zone 2 East.
2011 outlook: Eleven returnees give Hi-Boy/Post 340 a solid nucleus to make a run at the Zone 2 East title.
INDEPENDENCE POST 21
Top returnees: Tyler Bodenstab, Tanner Burkett, Josh Felz, Tommy Harris, Jamie Hayes, Donnie Hicks, Chance LaFavor, Joe Monaco, James O’Dell, Tom Ruddy, Zach Sharp.
Newcomers: Corey Biegel, Andrew Billingsley, Kyle Combs, Connor Polacek, Jake Wingo.
Coaching staff: Tom Bush, manager; Tom Noland, Byron White, Kurt Zorich, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “I like that fact we have 11 returners, in which seven were starters last year. The newcomers will play a major rule in the outcome of the season. Offensively, we should be able to score some runs. Defensively, I like the versatility of this group. Pitching depth also seems to be my biggest concern. If we do the little things such as make routine plays, pitchers throw strikes and stay healthy, we should have a competitive season.”
2010 finish: 26-17 overall, tie for second place in Zone 2 West at 17-9.
2011 outlook: Post 21 is a perennial legion standout and this summer should be no exception because of all of the returning experience. Many players of a strong 19-6 Truman team should from a solid nucleus.
INDEPENDENCE VFW POST 1000/JERRY’S SPORTS BEARS
Returnees: Rob Brockman, Jacob Douthat, Omar Herrera, Dakota Knight, Ethan Lane, Grant McCoy, Auston Mavis, Andrew Phillips, Houston Richards, Nathan Wall, Dylan Wilkinson.
Newcomers: Andy Anderson, Matt McCulloch, Justin Murray, Michael Payne, Michael Thomason.
Coaching staff: Ron Phillips, manager; John Anderson, Brian Thomason, Mike Williamson, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “We have 11 returning players. They played well at the end of last year and started winning. Pitching endurance and accuracy hurt us last year. The players have worked on this in the off season.”
2010 finish: 8-34, 2-22 and eighth place in Zone 2 West.
2011 outlook: The Bears return their most experienced team. Thus, a first winning season could be obtained. Pitching again will be the big key.
LEE’S SUMMIT POST 189 PIRATES
Top returnees: Colton Brockmeier, Marty Chamberlain, Bobby Diekmann, McKinley Duke, Brandon Dulin, Dayton Fossey, Justin Givens, Luke Jarnevic, Brandon Schwaller, Jared Simmons, Blake Studer, Eric Yotter.
Newcomers: Willie Brown, Corey Marcks, Josh Norris, Raymond Powell, Austin Yotter.
Coaching staff: Matthew Carpenter, manager; Andrew Diestel, Brian Flattenger, Matt Hoarc, James Taylor, Luke Warner, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “A lot of returning players should enable us to repeat as a solid offensive team. We have more depth at pitching than last year, which should help as the summer goes on. But we will miss Jarrett Erskina as our closer. Added pieces will hopefully improve on defense, which was our weakness last season.”
2010 finish: 28-22 overall, 12-14 and sixth place in Zone 2 West.
2011 outlook: An improved season is likely because of 12 returning players.
LEE’S SUMMIT POST 189 AUXILIARY OUTLAWS
Top returnees: Jeff Bock, Zach Bradford, Trent Evenson, Trevor Evenson, Nick Johnson, Pat Mercer.
Newcomers: Quentin Bradford, George Brandecker, Brad Conrow, Kyle Foster, Nick Howe, Tanner Stewart, Dallas Woods.
Coaching staff: Mike Gailey, manager; Tom Schelp, Tom Ulrich, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “We are not very deep in pitching and not sure about defense. Hitting should be strong.”
2010 finish: 21-22 overall, 14-10 and fourth place in Zone 2 West.
2011 outlook: The Outlaws will be one the most inexperienced teams in the league. Pitching could be the key to rebounding from last season’s losing record.
OAK GROVE POST 379
Top returnees: Tanner Eastabrooks, Logan Harrison, Tyler Johnson, Derek Kelton, Thad Madsen, Taylor Robinson, Zach Shaw, Chris Swearingen.
Newcomers: Alex Brown, Nathan England, Dakota Graham, Dwight Ridley, Jake Ruskey, Jackson Schneiders, Jesse Snyder, Vincent Walrath, Lucas Williams.
Coaching staff: Dave Richards, manager; Ryan Dickson, Travis Johnson, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “We have a good mix of young and old. I think we will be deeper in several areas. We should be able to be competitive. It will need to be a complete team effort. The young ones are going to have to make an impact.”
2010 finish: 31-22 overall, 17-10 and third place in Zone 2 East.
2011 outlook: Post 379 is on the area’s most successful programs. A losing season is rare. The returning players and promising newcomers should result in another successful season.
RAYTOWN POST 596
Top returners: Michael Babbitt, Tyler Kobel, Tyler Nash, John Nead, Gabe Swope Jesse Watson, Matt Ybarra.
Newcomers: Nick Bisignano, Matt Burnaugh, A.J. Salinas, Tyler Smith, MIchael Villarreal, Jarrett Wesley, Josh Wilmore.
Coaching staff: Mike Meany, manager; Will Babbitt, John Doughty, coaches.
Manager’s comments: “Overall, (we) should be competitive this season. Our strengths are defensive play and pitching depth.”
2010 finish: 40-25 overall, 18-8 and first place in Zone 2 West.
2011 outlook: Post 596 comes off its most successful season. Seven returnees and several newcomers off a successful 17-12 Raytown team could result in another banner summer and a run at a repeat Zone 2 West title.
Note: The Lee’s Summit Robert L. Clour Post 189 Bulldogs did not respond to repeated requests for information.