EOBL All-Star Game set for Memorial Day
The prep baseball season is winding down.
The regional pairings are set, graduations are being held and all-star games are being staged.
The first area all-star game happens Monday when the East Ohio Baseball League’s Kyle Rose Classic unfolds at Mazeroski Field in Cadiz with first pitch slated for 1 p.m.
“It’s a good game and a good time for the kids,” EOBL organizer Dane Morgan said. “Whether the kids are freshmen or seniors, they’ll all be recognized, but only seniors play in the game.”
This is the final season for the EOBL as it currently stands. Morgan announced a handful of changes, which he believes will strengthen the league for the forseeable future.
“We had to find a way to work (a few) things out,” Morgan said. “It took a couple of weeks of thinking, but the league’s for the kids and nothing more than that. I appreciate the schools’ efforts and willingness to make sure the EOBL is around a lot longer than I probably will be.”
First and foremost, the EOBL is expanding next season. St. John Central is back into the league after withdrawing for a few seasons. Monroe Central has also been accepted into the league. Both the Irish and Seminoles will begin competing in the league in 2015.
“I think it’s good for everyone to see St. John back in (the league) and Monroe’s association with River and the fact they already play Shadyside, along with the rewards we offer made it a good option for them, too,” Morgan said.
With the addition of the new members and the changing in the Buckeye 8 as it prepares to break into two divisions for the upcoming school year, the EOBL has realligned as well.
There will no longer be a big and small division, but instead, there will now be three divisions, based more on geography.
The EOBL North will be comprised of Buckeye Local, Harrison Central, Linsly and Martins Ferry; the EOBL West will include Barnesville, Bellaire, St. Clairsville and Union Local, while the EOBL South will contain Bridgeport, Monroe Central, River, Shadyside and St. John.
“We didn’t want to lose any of the teams, so we had to do something because Buckeye Local was going to be a tough fit because of its need to add teams like East Liverpool, Indian Creek and Beaver Local for two games,” Morgan said. “Plus, with gaining St. John and Monroe, this just seemed like the best option.”
Each team in each division will play twice, and, according to Morgan, it doesn’t appear there will be a league title game with an odd number of divisions. The Kyle Rose All-Star Game will continue, but the exact format of the teams hasn’t been determined yet, either.
“The all-star game for 2015 is another bridge we still have to cross,” Morgan said.
The complete EOBL All-Star squads are as follows with the names in bold, indicating they’re seniors and eligible to play in Monday’s game:
St. Clairsville – Michael Jacob, Daulton Freeman, Malik Gummer, Lewis Mitchell.
Harrison Central – Nick Staten, Dalton Rutter, Brennan Graves, Ian Saho.
Bellaire – Nick Patrone, Spencer Badia, Wyatt Back, Brendon Ross, Tyler Ramsay, Hunter Westlake.
Buckeye Local – Jonathan Borkoski, Chase Hopkins, Eric Williams, Eric Banal, Jared Moore.
Union Local – Tristan Bruce, Travis James, Eric Dunfee, Cody Bennett, Shane Smolenak.
Martins Ferry – Robert Vargo, Marcus Sutton, Seth Scott, Lucas Lloyd.
Linsly – Jameson Murray, Arien Seymour, Colton Coss, Dillon Curtin.
Barnesville – Auston Hannahs, David Brown, David Stewart, Mitchell Wells, Jacob Keiser.
Shadyside – Zack Frizzi, Colton Campbell, Travis Fulton, Cole Crow, Luke Nardo.
Bridgeport – Bailey McGrath, Q.J. Williams, Andrew Hadzima, Bradley Pritchett, Parker Dyson, Colt Charlton.
River – Eric Dierkes, Cole Isaly, Wes Smith, Zach Dennis.