Rounding Third By Line Drive August 27th 2019

Hello and welcome to a long overdue edition of Rounding Third. It has been a very busy couple of months for Line Drive, so unfortunately he has not had enough time to watch and observe the goings on down at The Ranch. However things have slowed down a little bit and he’s now had a chance to run an eye over what has been happening.
The North Eastern Baseball 2019 season has come to an end with both Rangers sides Orange and Black making their respective Grand Finals. Unfortunately through no want of trying, neither side could not get over the line. Congratulations goes to Porepunkah Panthers and North Albury Bears for their Grand final wins. Enjoy the celebrations. More about that sort of stuff later.
This edition will be quite wide as there have been sections written over the past couple of months. Stick with it and enjoy the read.
Butts is the man…and is the game.
    There are few players that I know that give as much effort in finals as one Rob “Butts” Seymour does. Year in and year out Butts puts the Orange and Black on with pride and will always give 110 per cent out on the diamond. He continues to throw himself around like a 20 year old and many of the plays he has made at second base this year, others would not even get near. His hitting and base smarts need to be mentioned as well and many pitchers find him a nightmare to pitch against. Butts has one of the longest histories with the club and is respected by many, for the way he plays the game. Always hard, fair and wants to win. Sometimes others look to gain an edge over him and ruffle his feathers, however Buttsy’s ability to just play the game and support his team is a testament to his nature. Most players show the respect deserved to him as a player, a coach and a friend.  Another great year of diving and countless double plays! Keep playing the way you do Rob. We all love and respect what you do for the game In the North Eastern Baseball Association.
Grand Final day 2019
    As mentioned above it was a wonderful effort for both Rangers Orange and Rangers Black in making the grand final for 2019. The hired a bus and many Ranger players and supporters jumped on to enjoy the trip up the Hume to Wodonga. Coupled with others who travelled far and wide to come watch the great atmosphere on the day.
In the early game Rangers challenged Porepunkah for long periods of the game but Porepunkah proved too strong in the end to take out the 2019 North Eastern Baseball Association B Grade title.
In A grade, Rangers Black jumped out of the blocks behind some strong pitching from Bryan “Moose” Wilson and took and early 3 run lead. One thing for sure is that the Bears would not rest and would come back at Rangers strong. A few hits here and there Bears slowly clawed their way back into the game and continued to scratch and fight for runs. Rangers Black threw everything at them but could not get over the line going down 11-4 in the end. It sounds like a big scoreline but the game was much closer than that. Rangers should be proud of the way they played the game and represented the club. From juniors to seniors, we are continuing to grow and thrive with plans to enter a third senior team, and a second junior side in season 2020. This is through the committed efforts of the current committee and the many helpers the Wangaratta Rangers are fortunate to have.  Watch this space for news in the off season. There is much planning to do!
GF day 2019
View of the B Grade from the outfield. Was a busy day so only picture Line Drive got.
Junior Final day 
    A typical winters day greeted the 2019 Junior Finals day held at Wangaratta on July 14th. The weather was cold, dreary, and it threatened to rain, but the enthusiasm and the play on the diamonds under some trying conditions was hot! The car park was full. The the numbers of parents, friends, former players and members of the North Eastern Baseball community coming together to celebrate and support juniors finals day was amazing to witness. Already many of the junior Rangers have recommitted for season 2020. A big thank you to Coaches Owen Godenzi and Nathan Pool, helped by a variety of others throughout training and on game-day in season 2019. Not to mention sponsors Wangaratta McDonalds and Frasca’s Steel.
Presentation Night
    This year the Rangers night to celebrate a fantastic 2019 season will be held on Saturday September the 7th at Wangaratta Gateway Hotel. It will be sit down affair with two course feed being the order of the night. Numbers are being taken online for those who want to go along and have a night of laughs and a good time. Some of the Ranger crew and their partners have already mentioned that they are going to ‘frock up’, so get the suits and dresses out ladies and gents. A best dressed award could be in order. Brownlow eat your heart out!  Dale “Humpernickle” Stevens has been checking out the menu and is looking forward to trying the chicken or the veal. Night will kick off with the Annual General Meeting followed by presentation starting at 6:30pm. If you are interested in becoming part of a vibrant forward thinking committee drop the club a line and come along on September the 7th.
Griff and no beard
A shock to the system when wandering to get a some food from the Wangaratta Canteen a few Sundays back, was being greeted by a clean shaven Daniel Griffin. A good friend of Line Drive was rather taken aback by being greeted by a clean shaven Daniel, so much that he could not call him by his usual nickname, “Griff”. He will now be known simply as ‘Daniel’ till it grows back. One wonders what the rest of Esmond street posse would look like if they shaved their defining features off too?
Grunt the Pig makes and appearance at the Baseball
Do you remember the day that you batted a thousand for the cycle and stole three bases? No? Not really, but Grunt the pig was at Targoora Park. Yes Grunt and his owner were out for a wander a couple of Sunday’s ago and all sort his presence. Shaun “Old School” O’Neil quipped to Rob “Butts” Seymour before the game that if he had a big day, no one would remember what Buttsy did on the diamond but many would remember Grunt being at the baseball. For the record, what did Buttsy do that day? It was so long ago now that you might need to ask him. Ask Grunt, he might know.
Thursday nights in 2019
The commitment shown by all who have pulled on the Orange and Black this year is to be commended. Week in and week out this year there has been on average no less than fifteen having a throw, a hit and generally improving their all round skills and knowledge at training on Thursday nights. I know to many readers at other clubs, 15 does not sound like many but for a small club this has been a huge effort. There are few who travel from afar each week for training and their effort is recognized too. A big thank you to all those who have put their hand up to cook a meal, run training, set up the diamonds, help out with juniors among all the other little activities we all have going on in our lives. It makes the drive over always worth it.
 
What on Earth is going on with the trip?
    The 2019 Rangers Ramble has taken many twists and turns over the past few months. At this stage it is still in a holding pattern. This has given the chance for a few Ranger trip veterans to realise they may have a chance to make the trip after all in 2019. Once determined, it will be full steam ahead for all. This does give the punters of the group a chance to continue to try raise funds and the tin is still open until those who go get on the bus. Watch this space.
Softball anyone keen?
    Softball is played on the border over the summer months and a few Rangers players travel up and play in the Albury Wodonga Softball Association. There are varying times that they play, but I do recall it is either Wednesday night or Saturday. The club is putting the feelers out there for anyone who is keen to play softball. For more information contact the club and let Kev Pool know.
Summer time is no time to rest.
    With so many plans that have come to fruition in season 2019, the club now looks to the off season to continue the revamp and resurgence of baseball in Wangaratta. A job to be completed over the coming months is to top dress the diamond to help promote more grass growth and improve overall appearance of diamond one. Diamond one had a bit of a tough winter and needs a bit of TLC. The club are looking to get together once a month over spring and summer to do work around the grounds and rooms. When plans are more solid we will update the Facebook page, Team app and web page for more details. The club are on the look for more players so would love to see new faces down at the Ranch in the coming seasons.
Cod Season
Did someone say Cods? Are we allowed to talk about Cods now? Esmond Street are you tailgating again on the weekend of March 19-22nd in Ballarat? Of course you are!
Now for the club stuff
  • Presentation at Gateway Wangaratta Saturday 7th of September $42 for a two course meal. Will be a great night.
  • Interested in Softball? Let Kev Pool know.
  • Got raffle tickets for the Rotary Wangaratta Raffle? Make sure you sell them and get them back to Kev Pool as soon as you can.
  • Working Bees will be posted online. Hope to see you there.
  • Interested in playing next season? We got spots for you! Come along and join the most progressive club in the North East!
  • Pickle ball on Tuesday and Saturdays. Message Moose if interested.
Well I think I have said enough this week. Apologies for the lack of writing over the past couple of months. I know there are many out there who do enjoy the read, and the catch up on what is going on in North Eastern Baseball. Look for another edition once presentation is done and dusted. I am sure there will be much to talk about then. Maybe I will save the big wrap up till then.
Till next time,
Go Rangers !
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Rounding Third By Line Drive June 27th 2019

   Hello and welcome to a long overdue edition of Rounding Third. it has been about two months since the last edition or even more and the 2019 North Eastern Baseball season is progressing nicely. In B Grade the Ranger crew have been working hard on and off the field and have a very handy win/loss record heading into the final 5 games of the season. Over the past weekend in Wodonga,  a committed and solid effort with bat and glove saw the Rangers B grade run out winners 19-5. In the late game, bathed in winter sunshine, another impressive hitting display was the order of the afternoon with Rangers A getting the chocolates 17-5. The youngest Rangers got a win too making it three wins from three. A special thank you to Wodonga’s hospitality, as the pulled pork rolls and chilli dogs were a hit with all who ventured up the Hume for the day. Next week the Rangers head south to Benalla to take on Benalla Bandits in both A and B grade. First pitch will be from 9:30am. Benalla has a great canteen too, so bring your pennies and spend them wisely while watching the baseball on Sunday.
Now to what has been happening around the club. Maybe Shaun “Old School” O’Neil will get another mention this week…….
Soak is walking the Kokoda track
Very good friend of Line Drive, Cam “The Soak” Scott is heading to Kokoda in September 2019 with twelve intrepid students as part of a leadership program. In the meantime he has been trying to scramble up every hill or incline he can find around the area. So far so good in his preparation, as one of his other great enjoyments in life will be taking a backseat for the next three months. A friend of The Soak told him on Friday night, that he couldn’t call him Soak, and would have to call him Cam, as it was just not the same calling him that name whilst a soda water was in his hand. Whatever the case, The Soak is looking forward to the challenge.
The Skipper sees everything
This has been sitting under my hat for a couple of months now but Line Drive was sent a message by Mick “The Skipper” Wyatt the other day about someone looking like they were asleep during the baseball. Now one won’t divulge who it was, but they were just basking in a siesta in the Sunday sunlight on a mild early May afternoon. If you want to know who is was see Mick for more information.
Humpernickle in the house
As mentioned in previous editions, it has been great to welcome some new players to the diamond in season 2019. One played who has had an impact already, is the clubs only true left-hander Dale “Humpernickle” Stevens. He played the game many years ago and it has only taken a couple of weeks to get his bat up to speed with the game.  His running of the bases will slowly improve as more time on the diamond will help. His overall enthusiasm and willingness to learn is great to see. Welcome aboard Dale. Just be careful swinging baseball bats at home and try not to hit yourself in the back of the head with one!
Thursday night training goes up a gear
Since the long weekend break the boys and girls of Wangaratta Rangers have been working doubly as hard on the track. Over the past few weeks a variety of different drills have been put into place with a big emphasis on running and defense of a variety of plays. However after a few years of deliberation, a new pitching machine was purchased by the club. Already club members are putting it to good use. Get down to training each Thursday, have a hit, a run around and a cooked meal. See you there.
Griff and the team run a great Canteen
Travelling man Daniel “The Griff” Griffin has once again come up with the goods in the canteen. Griff and his band of merry men and women have served the masses at Wangaratta home games. From the Ranger dog to muffins supplied by Lauren Dinsdale, the canteen has had it all so far this season. However, Griff needs your help. President Nathan “Rubberarm” Pool has created a roster for home games asking all Ranger players to help with a shift. However if you fail to show up then it is up to the person involved to switch shifts with another from the club. If you want to know when your shift is check it out in the documents section on Teamapp  https://wangarattarangers.teamapp.com/. How much do you owe again Shaun “Old School” O’Neil?
The King is here
Angus “Elvis” King has become the go to man in many situations this season. Not only is he an integral member of the Esmond street posse, but has become number one on the egg and bacon barbecue at home games. Elvis has been willing to roll his sleeves up and help out wherever it is required round the club. He has shown a sure set of hands in his fledgling playing days with the Rangers and we are sure enjoying having him around the club. Plus it has given a reason Brad “Undies” Murdoch to come to training too!
Congrats and welcome to the world 
A big congratulations to the Docs of the club, Sarah and Sean Warfe on the safe arrival of son Jude. See you down at the ground sometime soon.
Rangers represent once more
The 2019 State Winter Championships are done and dusted for another year. The North Eastern boys acquitted themselves well once again. One person from the Rangers had a sensational weekend with the bat and glove. Aaron “Azza” Parker’s bat was white hot for the weekend. Line Drive’s spies in Geelong were in awe of the display Azza put together. Power, speed and patience, Azza did it all. Let’s hope he keeps his bat hot for the second half of the season.
The Slugathon continues
    Slugathon update. The brothers of mash Bryan “Moose” Wilson and Owen “The Gaffer” Godenzi have resumed their battle to be home run king in 2019. Over the past weekend in Wodonga, Moose upped the ante but slugging back to back home runs, while The Gaffer pegged one back late in the game.  This may be the weekend for Scott “Big Daddy” Jenkins to get back in the game too as the third member of the brothers of mash. A thrilling race will go right down to the final game in season 2019.
B Grade putting up the wins
    The men and women of B grade Rangers have been working hard on the track in the past couple of months and all that work is definitely starting to pay off. Managers Steve “Fernando” Peruzzo and Mick “The Skipper” Wyatt have been wringing the changes and getting the best out of the rotating squad of players. It is great to see the younger members of the squad developing rapidly with the wiser heads guiding them through all sorts of different situations that arise in a game of baseball. Put the effort in and you get the results. Great work Rangers.
Juniors looking the goods
    Line Drive had the opportunity to watch the juniors at Wodonga last weekend and one thing for sure is that the future is a bright one for Wangaratta. Coaches Owen Godenzi and Nathan Pool along with right hand man Bryan Wilson on game days, and others including Jason “Sunscreen” Jonker on training nights have the juniors developing very very nicely. It has been a lot of graft and the parental support of the juniors is to be commended. The hitting and fielding was excellent and reminded a few older players of the time they played junior baseball all those years ago. Only a few weeks to go so get down to Benalla this weekend and have a look at future Rangers.
Nice to see you Bestie
    On old Ranger made an appearance down at Wodonga over the past weekend. Shannon “Bestie” Whiting came down to have a look two of his former clubs. It has been a while since Bestie put the boots on but was once again was quick to throw a few verbal barbs at his former team mates. It has something many of the players have missed over the past few years and was a welcome return. When asked if he missed baseball he did reply… a little. Another to resurface for Wodonga was former golden puffer fish Ash “Steel Panther” Meyers who rocked the hoodie and headphones in preparation for the game. Nice to see you gentlemen.
Now for the club stuff
  • Rangers are all at Benalla this Sunday. Great canteen at Racecourse Reserve Benalla.
  • Club fees are now due see Spinner for details. EFTPOS facilities now available at the club.
  • Training Thursday nights. Juniors from 5pm, Seniors 6pm. Cage in operation.
  • Check the canteen roster on Teamapp. Make swaps where necessary please.
  • If you are unavailable please place your unavailability on Teamapp as soon as you know. If picked and something changes please let your managers know directly.
  • Follow the game? Look up Wang Rangers on gc.com
  • 14th July cent a number round robin at Wangaratta.
  • 27th July is a Saturday game.
It had been a while since the last write up so it’s nice to check in and give you,  the avid reader out there an update.
Till next time
Go Rangers

Rounding Third by Line Drive April 30th 2019

Hello and welcome once again to another edition of Rounding Third. A couple of weeks has passed since we least checked in to see what has been happening down at the Ranch. I seem to say this every time but those ladies and gentlemen of the Wangaratta Rangers are not resting on their heels during season 2019. Last weekend for the first time in around ten seasons, junior baseball returned to the diamonds of Porepunkah and Benalla respectively. Our junior Rangers looked all the part in their new jerseys and grey pants. The game ended in a 5-all draw and was enjoyed by all. A big thank you to the parents and supporters for heading up the valley to watch the game once again. In the late game Rangers Black took on Bears Green. After a rough start on the diamond the boys worked themselves into the game, but unfortunately the horse had bolted the yard and Bears came away with a 13-7 victory. This coming weekend sees games played in Wangaratta where Rangers will play host to Benalla on Sunday. Hope to see you there.
Now onto other news.
 
One in we all in
    Porepunkah Panthers are the team of the Ovens Valley. They are situated 8km from Bright right next to Porepunkah primary school. The ground is one of the most picturesque grounds you could play baseball at through Victoria with the Autumn leaves, colour and the mountains as a backdrop. In recent seasons they have struggled for numbers, but the determination of a small band of baseball die-hards has kept this great little club afloat. On Sunday it was great to see that they have pulled some juniors together to form a team to play this year in the junior competition. If not for the work of the Porepunkah faithful this would have not been the case.  Porepunkah Panthers Baseball Club is the towns only sporting team and this writer feels that many may not even know it is there. After a quick search online, via various sites shows that there is limited knowledge of their existence. But exist they do. This is not just a call for players but a call for anyone out there who would like to get involved or reconnect with baseball with a down to earth club who want to keep the game alive up in the valley. In the past few years a couple of sporting clubs have either folded or merged with others down the valley. Come down and have a look at Porepunkah Recreation Reserve next home game, say hello and help support a great club of the North Eastern Baseball Association.
IMG_5103
Where else can you play in such a picturesque location? Thanks to Lauren Scott for the image
Old School punting.
    There are a few down at the Ranch who like to have a little flutter from time to time. Over the past weekend Shaun “Old School” O’Neill declared he had the winner in the Ranger Ragtag Punters. After the poor start to the game and Old School not having one of his better days along with Cam “The Soak” Scott, he thought they were on a winner with Carlton out to a big lead at half time over Hawthorn. However in the second half the optimism for the punt diminished like Carlton’s lead and the Hawks won in a thriller. Maybe more luck next week, hopefully Kelsey “Dropsy” Burder might turn it around.
Fernando and Skipper: The mower men
    A couple of weeks back Orange managers Steve “Fernando” Peruzzo and sidekick Mick “The Skipper” Wyatt went for a road trip up to Sydney to pick up the clubs new purchase. A mower to help keep the upgraded Ranger number one diamond in tip top condition. From what my spies have heard, the boys did enjoy themselves on the trip and are very chuffed with the mower. This purchase will help improve the quality of the surface at Targoora park as the club are looking to continuing to improve their facilities. Thanks for your efforts gentlemen. Now who is going to drive it first?
 
Thursday night training
    This Thursday will see Cam “The Soak” Scott and Lauren “Mrs Soak” Scott provide dinner for the masses. Now when we talk masses in baseball speak, we refer to the 15-25 members who come down to training week in week out. It does not sound like many but for us at the Ranch this is a healthy turn out, and it’s getting healthier by the week. On the menu is pumpkin soup with scones. Now many of you will be thinking Mrs Soak will be doing most of the preparation but don’t be fooled. Mrs Soak says Cam can cook. Rain hail or shine dinner will be on Thursday night after training for $10 and includes a drink too. Head down earlier to watch the junior Rangers put through their paces, then warm-up from 6pm. See you there.
Rangers Junior News
    Photos from the past weekend are now up online on the Junior Rangers page. A big thanks to Brendon French for taking the photos throughout the first game in Porepunkah. The link is  https://www.facebook.com/wangarattarangersjuniorbaseball/ More photos to come over the coming weeks. If interested, come down to the club on Thursday nights from 5pm and see what it is all about. One thing is for sure, exciting times lie ahead for Wangaratta.
We will keep it short this week so now to the club stuff
  • Players if you are unavailable please place it on teamapp. Download the app and look for Wangaratta Rangers.
  • Rangers play host to all games this week
  • Rangers Orange play Bears Gold from 9:30am
  • Rangers Black play Benalla A from 2:15pm
  • Committee meeting after training this Thursday for those who are interested
  • Punters club is back once again see Cam for details
  • Merchandise is available from the club. Just ask and we hope we can accommodate your wishes
More to talk about next week. In the mean time….
Go Rangers !!

Rounding Third By Line Drive April 15 2019

Hello and welcome to the round one and two edition of Rounding Third.  Season 2019 in the North Eastern Baseball Association got underway for the boys and girls of Wangaratta Rangers Baseball Club. The first round saw a return to the two division system, for the first time in over five years. Rangers Orange who play in B grade had the early game against Benalla B. Rangers Orange proved to be too strong for the newly reformed Benalla B, running out winners 26 to 5. In the late game, Rangers Black took on Benalla A. Rangers jumped out to an early lead and were in control for long parts of the match eventually winning 12-3.
    Week 2 and warm weather greeted all the clubs to sunny Wangaratta. In B grade, Rangers Orange and Porepunkah played out an 8 all draw as time had run out, while in A grade, Rangers Black welcomed Wodonga Warriors White. It was a tight struggle early, with the Rangers eventually gaining some momentum after leaving many early base runners to grind out a win by the score of 11-0.  Once again a very good crowd was in attendance for both games and the club thanks you for your continued support to start season 2019. This is going to be a big edition so let’s get into the news!
French Jonker and Sons
Over the first two rounds it has been pleasing to watch both Jason “Sunscreen” Jonker and Brendon “Frenchy” French get the opportunity to take the diamond with sons Nick Jonker, Heath and Damien French respectively.
It was seen on their social media pages that both men were wrapt to be playing the game they have played for many years, and have passed on their love of the game to their sons too. Congratulations gentlemen, hope you both have an enjoyable year of baseball with your sons in 2019.
Jenko begins season with a bang
Scott “The Beard” Jenkins is a busy man these days. With a young family to look after, and to his time as an apprentice plumber. What else can Jenkins add to his bow? Pitching is something Jenkins has identified as something he would like to do more over season 2019. He got his chance in week 1 down at Benalla where he threw two innings to get the Rangers over the line against Benalla A. He woke up a bit bit battered and bruised come Monday morning, but by Thursday night he was coming good. On Sunday against Wodonga, he let his bat do the talking. He sent a towering shot over left field to open his home run account for season 2019. Could this be the year of Jenkins?
 
Goggles Returns
Good to see Sam “Goggles” Grigg return to the diamond to play. He had made a deal with his fellow Esmond Street comrades that he would play some games this year. This has come about after Kelsey “Dropsie” Burder (who again lived up to his nickname in round 1 vs Benalla) said to him he could not buy into Ranger Ramble VIII to be held later in 2019. Grigg was his usual busy self on the diamond getting on base and speeding his way around the base paths. His coach Mick “The Skipper” Wyatt was impressed with his speed on the diamond,  but was bemused by his lack of it, off it. He was telling Line Drive that Sam was the first one there and getting organised for warm up but one of the last to actually get out to warm up. Save the speed for the game Goggles!
Rangers 2019
Let’s win this! 
The King is here
Great to have Angus King on board in season 2019. Gus has watched a game or two and been seen with the Esmond Street band at numerous Ranger functions. Now Gus has put the glove on and is having a crack out on the diamond. There are a few new faces down at The Ranch this year. A big welcome to Jimi “Winner” Wingrave who made his debut for Orange on Saturday with Dale “Lefty” Steven and Marcus Therkelman. Great see new players, welcome aboard!
Parker picks it perfectly
Aaron “Azza” Parker took to the hill against Wodonga Warriors and after a little bit of an unlucky start, found his groove. With the spluttering Ranger offense in the early innings Parker did a masterful job on the mound to keep the Wodonga bats subdued. Eventually the Ranger bats woke up and started giving him some run support. Once he had finished his stint on the mound, it was difficult to keep Parker out of the game at short stop. A great “eye open” short hop to get an out at first. This was followed by a loose ball that got away from Owen “The Gaffer” Godenzi, to stop a run scoring at home plate. This had the Ranger supporters in full applause for his efforts. Not to mention another supply of top notch lollies! Azza really did have a great day.
Juniors begin in Porepunkah on 28th of April
In what is definitely a step forward for the association, for the first time in ten years, junior baseball is back. After a power of work behind the scenes by all clubs, an under fourteen competition will commence a ten week season to be played at 12-1:30pm on each game day. Coaches Nathan “Fomo” Pool and Owen Godenzi are very excited and pumped about the next generation of ball players who will be wearing the Rangers colours. Training for juniors has moved to Thursday nights from 5pm at Targoora Park. All seniors, if available, are encouraged to head down early before their training and lend a hand to help run drills and teach the basics of baseball. The following Thursday night will see the juniors be presented with their playing tops following training and a good old fashioned pie night will be the order of the night too. These are exciting times for baseball in the North East, and all clubs are to be congratulated on working hard to ensure they have a team ready to go in season 2019. Good luck to all juniors out there. Hope you enjoy the game as much as I have for the past 25 plus years.
Teas on Thursday nights
After an amazing Spag Bol last week catered by Shaun “Old School” O’Neil, Azza Parker steps up this week for his famous steak sangas. Always a crowd favorite, no one will go home hungry with that on the menu. The club now has EFTPOS and for $10 includes a meal and a drink….. and maybe seconds if you are lucky. So now no excuse for not having cash. No cash, no worries. Look for the poll on the Rangers Facebook for more information.
 
Want to know what is going on? Multiple ways to do so! 
Just a friendly reminder of where you can find Ranger information out there. Check out http://www.wangarattabaseball.com for game reports, courtesy of game changer. A link will be available to this report Team app and Twitter. There is always the Facebook site and of course this little blog if you really really want to know what the characters of the Wangaratta Rangers are up to. I hope to write this fortnightly during the season to get a real idea of who is doing what and all the other exciting things we have planned for the year.
Gilly and the Tin; to put your fines in
The tin is back and already the change is flowing into it. From strike outs to Mick Wyatt saying about a batter that, “he doesn’t want to hit it” , proceeds to hit a home run, wrong coloured socks on home days, to leaving a piece of uniform on the ground, there are plenty of ways that Gilly is looking to fill the coffers. Now we all know it is all in good fun, it’s always good to have a laugh about it after the game each week. So keep working hard at training on Thursday nights and then maybe, just maybe, you may not have to contribute as much as others…..Maybe.
 
Beaker where are you?
Rob “Butts” Seymour and Cam “The Soak” Scott were discussing past players and were wondering where Rob “Beaker” Barbour is hiding. Last year we were able to flush him out for an appearance at a Rangers home game and by writing about him, so hopefully once again it might just be enough to get him down to watch his beloved Rangers. I am sure your read this Beaker, and it would be great to see you and other past players down at Targoora Park over the course of the season.
Beaker and Bunsen 2
Where are you Beaker??
Now for the club stuff
  • Junior training from 5pm Thursday. Senior to follow on Thursday after the completion of juniors. All are welcome.
  • Want to know all that is happening in the juniors? Check out  https://www.facebook.com/wangarattarangersjuniorbaseball/ for all your information and needs
  • EFTPOS facilities available to pay your fees and merchandise. Available each Thursday and game day
  • After each home game dinner is on at our great sponsor Cafe Martini from 5:30 pm. All are welcome.
  • Punters Club returns. Interested? See The Soak for details
  • If you are unavailable place it on Team App of when you cannot play. Just let us know!
  • Rangers u/14 vs Porepunkah at Porepunkah April 28th
  • Rangers Black vs Bears Green at Porepunkah 2:15pm Sunday April 28th Rangers Orange have a the bye
Wow that was a big edition. Exciting times ahead. Till next time you avid readers (Jonno from Wodonga) out there and others……
Go Rangers!

Rounding Third by Line Drive April 3rd 2019

Hello and welcome to the ‘Post Cods’ edition of Rounding Third. The North Eastern Baseball Association season is only a few weeks away. Training is back in full swing for the good folk who play for Wangaratta Rangers. The coaches have been putting the players through their paces and it has been good to see some new young fresh faces out on the diamond the past couple of weeks. The draw has been finalised and opening weekend will be Sunday the 7th of April. Rangers will be heading down the Hume to take on Benalla Bandits at Racecourse Reserve. More about that later. Now onto some news about what has been happening with the Cods.
Cods show plenty of fight
    This year the Cods had a bit of an interrupted preparation for their 6th trip to the Victorian Masters baseball Championships. It seemed every week there was a new challenge to put a Cod 35 and 45’s team on the park. However to the credit of the team managers, fellow Cods, and word of mouth, two teams proudly put the teal and black on in 2019. The Cods’s 35’s had the bare nine for the weekend, while the 45’s had one less. However both teams still did the North East proud. The 35’s had their best weekend on the diamond to date winning three and losing one over their four games, while the 45’s had their chances to notch a win but unfortunately fell just short. From all accounts from Line Drive’s spies in Ballarat,  all who suited up had a great time once again. Many have put their hand up for next year already. A big thank you to Ballarat Royals Baseball Club for putting on the weekend and the Alfredton Baseball Club who had very comfortable chairs to watch the game. A massive thank you to  Kingsley Collins who once again made the weekend run like clockwork. One thing for sure is that every Cod who does the four hour plus drive down from the North East to Ballarat and back again each year, continue to do so for the hospitality, camaraderie and a chance for a laugh, a drink and a bloody good weekend. Line Drive will return next year that’s for sure!
Cod banter
    The banter form the Cods was a little more subdued than past years. Maybe with the Shaun “Old School” O’Neil omission, the trip down was pretty tame. Enter Porepunkah’s Matty Shennan. The Punkah boys were running a little late and head Cod Nathan “Rubberarm” Pool was wondering where they were. Shennan was the first to pipe up and take on Pool on the chat. Shennan gave as good as he got on the chat and was asked to make sure he put his money where his mouth was on the diamond on Friday. From all reports from a Cod who was there, Matt Shennon gave a fine tribute to the sponsors with an epic Ice cream catch at left field. Not only did he play the two games for the 35’s, he was asked to bat nine and play right field for his third game of the day in the 45’s. A big first 24 hours, Shennan went on to have one of the more impressive rookie weekends many Cods have seen for a long time. Maybe a smoky for the pufferfish?
 
Socks maketh the uniform
    There have been many trends over the years with baseball uniforms. From the Knickerbocker look to the hemmed pant. From the hemmed pant to the un-hemmed baggy pant,  these have been quite subtle. The one area of the uniform that can make it stand out are under the pants, the humble sock. This year the Cods did some research and were able to get their hands on some old school style stirrup socks to jazz up the uniform. Five initial pairs were ordered and they have been a hit. Stirrup sock old timer,          Ash “Steel Panther” Meyers was suitably impressed with the colour and how it added to the complete package. Have a look for yourself below. Stirrup socks are back!
socks
Socks look pretty good 
The Pufferfish
    It has been a long operation for chief bean counter for the pufferfish award, Nathan “Fomo” Pool.  He has been tallying the votes and just generally waiting for those who went to Ballarat to get back to him. Meanwhile past winners Rob “Butts” Seymour, Ash “Steel  Panther” Meyers and Heath “Heater” Anders, are wondering if they are going to get their name engraved on the lump of wood for the second time. But the time has arrived to crown the 2019 Pufferfish winner. A rookie, Matty Shennan. Question is it silver or gold?
Thursday night training.
    Senior training is back for season 2019 and the Wangaratta Rangers encourage old and new players to come along, say hello and stay for a chat and a meal. Last week was a good old fashioned pie night and this week hot dogs are on the menu. During the year the players take it in turns to cook up a meal of their choice to the masses. One thing is for sure, the out of town travelers enjoy the meal. Remember $10 is all it costs and you always get plenty of food and drink for that amount. Hope to see you at training from 6pm Thursdays.
Season starts this weekend
    This weekend Wangaratta will head down the Hume to open their season against Benalla Bandits. Benalla have been very active over the summer time and it will be a good test to start the season. B-grade is from 11:30am while A-grade begins at 2:15pm at Racecourse Reserve Benalla. Drop in for a look if you are in the area on Sunday.
 
Now for the club stuff
  • Insurance for the season is now due. Check Teamapp and Wangaratta Rangers website for login details
  • Juniors Wednesday night from 5pm Come down and have a look.
  • Seniors training Thursday from 6pm and tea!
  • A and B grade both at Benalla Sunday from 11:30am
Thanks again and till next time,
Go Rangers

Rounding Third by Line Drive February 19th 2019

Hello and welcome to a February edition of Rounding Third. The heat has been well and truly on here in the north east of the state over the past four weeks. However with the heat, the busy committee at Rangers HQ have been working away feverishly behind the scenes to help improve the profile of the club and to make 2019 another extremely successful season. Now onto what has been going on. Line Drive went down to have a look last night and came away excited and encouraged by what is happening down at the ranch.
Junior Baseball back in full swing
    Junior coaches Nathan “Rubberarm” Pool and Owen “The Gaffer” Godenzi were very encouraged with the turnout for the first night Rangers Juniors 2019. From what I hear around the grounds, nineteen in the 8-14 year old range turned up for baseball drills while another twelve in the 5-8 year olds for T-ball. It was great to hear that Ranger senior players, Tetsu Kamiyama, Shaun “Old School” O’Neil, Kelsey “Dropsie” Burder,  were there to help out while Ranger legend Kevin Pool and Jamie Samuels ran the 5-8 year old with some parental help.
    In week 2, the boys and girls were put through their paces with a variety of hitting fielding and running drills. The three way rotation worked amazing and the smiles on both the kids and their parents faces was fantastic to see first hand. The talk after training and online has been extremely positive in how the nights are run with many participants now telling others to come along and have a go. The club is encouraging all players and supporters to come down, have a look, help out, see what all the hype is and get on board with what could be an exciting future for our club.  It will be on again over the next few Wednesday nights from 6pm at Targoora Park, Murdoch road Wangaratta.
Juniors look to return to the diamonds of the North East.
    The North Eastern Baseball Association are looking to run an under 14’s competition this coming winter season. The competition is proposed to be run on senior match days during term 2 of the school year which is from 28th of April till the 7th of July from 12:15pm-1:45pm. The Wangaratta Rangers are looking for any players interested aged 8-14 years old to be part of the new era of junior baseball in the north east. Spread the word and come along. In the mean time come along Wednesday nights to Targoora Park from 6pm. More information to follow.
Cod Season update
    The Cod season is well and truly upon all those who pull on the mighty teal and black of Cods Baseball. There has been a lot of back room talk about who is going to pull of the boots to go to Ballarat for the 2019 edition of Victorian Masters Baseball Championships. In the last edition of Rounding Third, it was noted that Cam “The Soak” Scott will not be making this years trip but since then a couple of other Ranger regulars have become unavailable too. One of the most prominent absentees will be perennial Golden pufferfish runner up and key Cod 45 player Rob ‘Beaker” Barbour. Fellow Cod Cam “Showtime” Rogers has declared the race extremely open this year with Beakers absence. Who is going to eat the extremely hot butter chicken this year Cam? Another front runner for the award was Shaun “Old School” O’Neil; who has also pulled the pin on his chance to take home the award. Could this give Rob “Butts” Seymour a free run at a second title?
    With the absence of some key cods in the 35+ category has seen an opportunity for some new Cods to earn their teal and black colours. New Cods this year sees Matt Shennan from Porepunkah, Aaron Holloway and Jono Rogers from Ringwood join the muddy bottom of the river environment that the Cods thrive in. Fellow Ranger Ross “Rossco” Johnson gets his Cod on this year for the first time. Welcome to the Cods men. Line Drive looks forward to hearing from his spies on the ground. Maybe “Cuts in the Cage” may be around to run their eye over the weekend as well
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Butts on a bike
    Speaking of Butts, it was good to see man about the northeast Rob “Butts” Seymour has joined the growing list of Ranger bikies! There have been a few posts popping up on social media of Butts enjoying his weekends on his new machine. It looks to be a very nice piece of machinery, and we all know Butts likes the best of the best.
Frosty Congratulations
    It was great to see over the summer that two of the coolest Rangers out there, got married in sunny beautiful Bali. A huge congratulation to Travis “Iceman” Frost and his wonderful bride Caz on their nuptials in front of their nearest and dearest. From all of us at Rangerland, Congratulations!
Muster night and training.
Muster night is fast approaching and the Wangaratta Rangers are on the lookout for new players. If you are interested in playing head down to Targoora Park on Wednesday 27th of February from 6pm onwards. All are welcome.
Ranger Club stuff
  • Working bee on final Friday of February from 5pm.
  • Muster night 27th February
  • Juniors Wednesday nights from 6pm.
  • Cods may have a run at some stage too!
Till next time
Go Rangers
Go Cods

Rounding Third By Line Drive Summer 2019 edition.

Hello and welcome to the summer edition Rounding Third. It feels like it has been an eternity since we last had a chat. However the time is right to let you know what has been going on around the Wangaratta Rangers Baseball/Softball Club. The season is long past in the memory and a new committee has taken over the reins. Well not brand new. Just a few people have been shuffled around into new portfolios. The Ranger Ramble was another highlight and well there has been a plethora of birthdays. But we will get to all of that later. Hope you enjoy the read.

Pool is the new President.

    Local rubber-arm and world traveller Nathan “FOMO” Pool has taken over the top job at Wangaratta Rangers Baseball/Softball Club. Now regular readers know about Nathan’s credentials to be the top dog. 300 games, son of club legend Kevin Pool, a regular at Vic Winter carnivals for North East and regular attendee for CODS masters. Former president Tony “Spinner” Smith has moved over to become the treasurer. All other positions remained the same. A big thank you to Spinner and his work in the past four years as president and to Scott “Daddy Mack” Jenkins who now moves back into general committee from treasurer. Already the club are looking forward to season 2019. The next meeting will be this Friday the 11th of January from 7pm at the clubrooms. All are welcome.

30 is the new forty or is 40 the new 30?

    This year down at the club there has been a plethora of milestone birthdays. This year has seen Nathan Pool, Cam Scott and Mick “The Skipper” Wyatt all celebrate the big 40, while Scott “Big Daddy” Jenkins, Kyle “Thrillmore” Gilmore have celebrated 30. Over the past couple of months, the club has welcomed a couple more with Kelsey “Dropsy” Burder and offsider Sam “Goggles” Grigg joining the 30 brigade. Welcome to your respective clubs gentlemen.

Ranger Ramble VII run and won.

    In 2018 The Rangers end of season trip was another roaring success. The theme was western, and what a theme it was. From gunslinger Scott Jenkins, to Brad Undies Murdoch and Woody, Sam Grigg as Jesse, Jamies Samuels and Rob Seymour as Indians, Cam Scott and Lauren Dinsdale as bar staff, Nathan Pool and Daniel Griffin riding inflatable horses, it seemed everyone had a pair. We not everyone. Kelsey “Dropsy” Burder thought outside the square and came as a Western Bulldog footballer. Pretty inventive the writer thought. Anyhow the trip was to Phillip island and it was a great trip down. Once at San Remo and having the stretch of the legs the crew were met by a Ranger from afar Daniel “Hank Scorpio” McCullough who had flown in from Canada the night before. One thing is for sure Daniel “The Griff” Griffin is a great trip planner and this year did not disappoint. Who won best dressed you ask? Word has it Cam “The Soak” Scott took home the chocolates a source down on the trip tells me. Hope all who ventured down had a wonderful time.

Cod Season    

    Yes yes I have been very quiet since the end of the past winter season but now as the weather is warm our attention turns to the 2019 Victorian Masters Baseball Carnival. Once again hosted by those wonderful folks in Ballarat from 15th to 17th of March. Once again the Cods are looking for players for their 35 plus and their 45 plus line ups. There will be a couple of changes this year and one notable absentee will be Line Drive’s close friend Cam “The Soak” Scott. Due to a clash of dates he will not be making the trip. Fear not he will be still soaking it up! However Line Drive’s travelling fans may make another appearance. One knows for sure the Esmond Street boys like a trip to Ballarat for the weekend. Sorry Kelsey you will not see Line Drive and The Soak in the one place once again. For more information on Cods Masters Baseball and if you are interested on donning the Cods uniform check out https://www.facebook.com/Codsmastersbaseball for all your Cods needs.

Wangaratta Rangers juniors

 T-ball has been an exceptional success leading into the Christmas break with on average 30 kids having a crack at t-ball and now into junior baseball. Coaches Nathan Pool, Owen “The Gaffer” Godenzi are impressed with how the kids have taken to the game we all love. Looking at the posts online there has been many positive reviews of how the club is going about the development of baseball in Wangaratta. In the past week a new site has been set up for Junior baseball information. https://www.facebook.com/wangarattarangersjuniorbaseball/ is the link and there will be more content added to the site as we move towards the commencement of t-ball and junior baseball in late January early February. If you are interested in playing please email the club wangarattarangers@hotmail.com. We hope to see you soon down at Targoora Park.

Pickle Ball what is it?

    Now here is something that is completely different to the usual baseball news. Wangaratta’s favourite Canadian import Bryan “Moose” Wilson has been hard at it getting another game he loves off the ground in Wangaratta. The name of the game is pickle ball. The sport combines elements of tennis, badminton and table tennis. It can be played using wooden or composite paddles in singles or doubles configuration. It is played on a court similar to the size of a badminton court and from all reports is a lot of fun. For those who are interested in having a hit for something different check out https://www.facebook.com/Wangaratta-Pickleball-494957764332723/

It’s been a while

I know a few of you out there has been wondering what had happened to Line Drive. He has a quiet few months on the information front. It was another good year for the club where many plans turned into achievements and there are many more good things in the pipeline in 2019. Come to think of it, he just suffered from the curse that was writers block and a little self doubt over whether or not do people like reading about what’s going on in North Eastern Baseball. That has now passed and is now looking forward to getting back into what is going on around the traps. Hope all out there has had a wonderful Christmas and new year period and looking forward to an enjoyable 2019.

Now for the club stuff

  • Committee meeting Friday 11th January from 7pm all are welcome
  • Junior baseball to fire back up late January Early February. more information to follow
  • Cods Masters March 15th to 17th if interested let the Codsters know via their page
  • Know anyone interested in playing drop us a line at wangarattarangers@hotmail.com
  • Check us out on Facebook the web, Twitter and on teamapp.
  • Anyone for golf? Might be time for a hit. Who is keen? Let Cam know

That’s it and till next time

Go Rangers