what happened to the baseball program
Posted by hilinetransplant (+126) 15 years ago
Just curious what happened to the once wonderful program that miles city had!
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+12134) 15 years ago
Good lord, there are so many people chasing softballs and baseballs around here that the parks can't keep up with it! Teeball, softball, baseball, little league, all are active and busy so far as I know.
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Posted by Patrick Petroff (+65) 15 years ago
Video games.
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
Hiline - Best not to ask.
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Posted by MCGirl (+306) 15 years ago
While not getting into the debate that we all know so well, I think the decline of baseball participation has to do with kids choosing to spend their summer increasing their skills at camps (ie basketball or football), which makes it difficult to commit to baseball.
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Posted by hilinetransplant (+126) 15 years ago
what a shame! I was part of that program from little league on up through legion! looked forward to it every summer! Had a top notch program not many others could match.Again what a shame!!!!!!!
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Posted by Kevin Senger (+17) 15 years ago
Author: Amorette Allison Posted: 6/3/2007 9:55:27 AM
Good lord, there are so many people chasing softballs and baseballs around here that the parks can't keep up with it! Teeball, softball, baseball, little league, all are active and busy so far as I know.


What does that mean......?????????? Every time you get on here...it does not make any sense??????????????
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Posted by David Schott (+17679) 15 years ago
Are the Miles City Mavericks not playing this year?

Will Miles City host the Bill Newhouse tournament this summer or is that canceled?
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Posted by MCGirl (+306) 15 years ago
Not only are the Mavs playing, we have a Colts team too. As far as I know, the Newhouse is still on.
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Posted by Mary De' (+55) 15 years ago
Yes the Newhouse is still on. If go to http://www.milescitymavericks.com/ You can find out the schedule and what teams are coming to the tournament. The Colts and the Mavericks season schedule is also on this web site.
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Posted by Mary De' (+55) 15 years ago
[This message has been edited by Mary De' (edited 6/5/2007).]
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3708) 15 years ago
So I guess the answer is "Pretty much nothing?"
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Posted by Ben-wah (+69) 15 years ago
I could go into this, too, even without mentioning the word "bat", but I'll be good and just say that there is plenty of activity. I'm not sure where the numbers are from the MCYBA side of things, but I think it's safe to say that the number of kids living around here that are playing baseball is up a little bit.
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Posted by Roxanna Brush (+121) 15 years ago
David,
Miles City no longer has an American Legion team because they refuse to use aluminum bats, only wooden. There is a rebel league starting up called the "Outlaws". They play in Terry and sometimes down at Bender only they do not give the City any money to use this field and are not covered under the liability insurance. There are only two Babe Ruth teams. There are so many softball teams, tee-ball softball, little girls softball, fast pitch softball, mens, womens and co-ed softball that teams are fighting over fields to practice on. Mens, womens and coed are using aluminum bats. The city health inspector will not allow hotdogs to be sold at Bender as they do not have 4 sinks in the concession stand, but Denton was grandfathered in. It is sad.
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
It's too bad that when there was the opportunity to provide the start-up capital for a CCDHS girls softball team (and a boys cross-country squad) four years ago, the decision was made to build a shed instead.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+12134) 15 years ago
The city doesn't have a "health inspector." I suspect you mean the COUNTY sanitarian was doing his job i.e. enforcing health codes.
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr (+15214) 15 years ago
I heard they wanted to sell kosher hot dogs rather than regular hot dogs.
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Posted by Eric Brandt (+841) 15 years ago
"There is a rebel league starting up called the "Outlaws"."

What does "Rebel" league mean exactly? Are they the rebels? After reading the news articles, it would appear that the Mavericks are in fact, by definition, the rebels. Am I wrong in observing that the Mavericks are CLEARLY in the minority on this issue.

Is it true that the Outlaws are using public facilities with no insurance? What evidence is thereto show that this league lacks underwriting? What should we do to them? I was in the park just yesterday and I don't have insurance! Bring the cuffs.

It IS TRUE that the Outlaws offered to PAY to renovate an unused field (Stanley Field at the Pumping Plant) It is also true that they came to the council last fall to ask for the field and were illegally denied because of (Sorry ben-wah) Metal Bats. To quote "For the sake of our children" Then they came in this spring and the council thought it was wonderful that citizens were stepping up to the plate. They authorized them! When they went to sign their contract, there was a new clause in it that NO ONE ELSE HAD! They could use the field, so long as they didn't use Metal Bats! They are playing out of town as a result. Tally Up One For Democracy! Someone call the ACLU!

Now - Who are the rebels? The ones trying to follow the laws, or the ones making up the laws as they go? Should they be "criminals" because they have a different viewpoint than you? Now that's American!

I really don't want to polarize here because I support both groups. I support them because they are both serving our youth and encouraging physical outdoor activity. These activities are instrumental in preserving the American way of life, not just now, but long into the future. This issue is clouding the purpose of sport and is undermining our whole community. We seriously need to diffuse this issue a little bit and just play ball!
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+12134) 15 years ago
Oh, I LOVE Kosher hot dogs. Ever had Nathan's? Yum.
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Posted by Stone (+1593) 15 years ago
Bla, Bla, Bla.

As someone else said in a post years ago, "put a helmet on the pitcher and lets play ball". Who cares what bat they use.
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Posted by Rick Kuchynka (+4459) 15 years ago
I've thought for awhile it would be cool to get a service group together to fix up Stanley field.

The big problems would be the lack of irrigation (I think) and the long-term maintenance. We all know the parks dept is just itching for more lawn to mow though, so maybe it could just be dumped on them.

[This message has been edited by Rick Kuchynka (edited 6/9/2007).]
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
Amorette - Nathan's hot dogs! What the heck are you talking about!? Nathan's hot dogs! Jeez - you'd think we'd be talking about baseball, not hot dogs! Make sense, woman! Hehe - couldn't resist the post before The Great Radio Controversy got to you.
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Posted by Bob L. (+5103) 15 years ago
Mmmmmmmmmmmm

Nathan's Hot Dogs.

Bob will be somewhere next weekend where Nathan's hot dogs will be in abundance.
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
I prefer Fenway Franks, but Nathan's aren't bad.
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Posted by Stone (+1593) 15 years ago
Rick, officially the parks department was in favor of the Stanley Field idea. So what if they fix up a sheep pasture what is the City out.
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Posted by extreme conditions (+36) 15 years ago
eric,

I guess I would not call the league "rebel" but instead I would call it unfair. It's a league that never has sign ups and you have to be personally invited to play. Now I could be wrong but I don't recall any sign-ups in the paper or try outs. So I'm not sure if they should use the public parks because it's not a league open to the public. Now I say, use what ever kind of bat you want and go and have fun, but let it be fun for all. Miles City is too small to have two baseball leagues. This issue has divided not only us but our children too.
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Posted by Eric Brandt (+841) 15 years ago
I can't speak for their membership practices. Perhaps an interested party would contact the club and ask for an invitation. The question remains then of whether or not they should be allowed to use a public park based on membership selection practices.

This is the CORE of the park's users permit - to allow groups to exclusively use a public facility during prescribed times without interference from other members of the public. Is this a fair practice at all? The public has decided that yes it is, so long as they get a permit. Without a permit, then there is no guarantee that your group can have exclusive access.

So, should a group be open to public membership in order to get a permit?

Let's say you want to have a family reunion...
Under this schema, in order to use the park, you have to be open to the public. Should I publish my family reunion in the paper to solicit public participation?

What if the Miles City Club, a completely exclusive membership by invitation only wanted to use the gazebo for a commemorative function? Do we deny them that facility because their membership is private?

The Kiwanis Club is frequently cheerfully using the Park to raise funds by selling hot dogs and hamburgers. A practice I would like to enjoy long into the future I might add. Many service clubs have membership by invitation or sponsorship only. Should they be banned because they do not solicit public membership?

I think that a group with exclusive access is perfectly fair. Is it fair that I should be required to let anybody in my club? While that might seem fair to the ones who want in, it doesn't seem fair to the members of the club. People join "clubs" because of similar interests. Clubs are by their very nature discriminatory. Is that "unfair"?

How fair is it that one group has to travel several miles to get a field to play on because they are denied that privilege at home - despite having the field available? How fair is it that one group received a different set of rules to use the public facility? What body gave the City the right to discriminate based on bat choice? Furthermore, I find it interesting that I have not yet found an ORDINANCE that requires a Park User's Permit in the first place. I would think by the lack of such a law, anyone could use the facility at any time regardless of another groups desire.

Fair is always a funny word... I'm not sure where I would draw the line.
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Posted by Coach Brabant (+56) 15 years ago
Eric, are you talking about the payment for the use of the parks in your message?

Coach Brabant
Miles Community College Pitching Coach
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Posted by Tina Bean (+412) 15 years ago
Eric,
I for one would love to thank you for your support of our REBEL team. I guess I would describe "rebel" as someone who breaks the law doing despicable and illegal things. (Like breaking into someones vehicle and stealing things from it that don't belong to you... readers talk to your children) The Outlaw team was formed FOR kids to play ball. Why can't we just play ball. My son loves ball just as much as the other kids do. Just like the travelling soccer and basketball. As far as being invited... people who expressed a WANT and DESIRE to play baseball were approached. Nothing was done to hurt anyone or be UNFAIR and discriminatory. My wish is that everyone in every sport have a great season. If you or your child wish to be considered for next years team try calling someone involved in the program. I'm sure they'd love to have you. Good luck to all sports lovers and sport players!!!
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Posted by Roxanna Brush (+121) 15 years ago
Eric,
I am talking about the 2 million dollar insurance policy the solfball players had to pay. "OutLaws" should have sign-ups to be fair to all children. I watched some youngsters last night practice fast pitch softball and they did a great job. Besides Eric in my 33 years of playing softball I have never seen you near the field so you may be over qualified on this subject.
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Posted by Pluto (+92) 15 years ago
If we could first know where we are, and whither we are tending, we could better judge what to do, and how to do it," Abraham Lincoln.

What is the five year plan for baseball in Miles City? Is the Outlaw program one team, of kids of a similar age, or a league? Ego aside, isn't it in Miles City's best interest to have one successful program?
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Posted by Roxanna Brush (+121) 15 years ago
Touch'e!!
I do understand that the "Outlaws" three teams and parents are just trying to be competative. Not all kids are welcome as they want to be able to control their numbers. The softball teams playing at Bender are using Metal Bats (not all are aluminum). There is a chance that anyone playing ball could get hurt or die at any time because of a freak accident. I have seen quite a few get hurt and they always come back, except Brandon. If Brandon would not have died and was only injured, would he have loved the sport so much that he would of played the next day? I think so, and his team, his parents and his home town would have been there to support him. Please Miles City support all of our children in whatever they do in their lives. That means all of them. My friend Mae played softball till she was 72 years old. She was a good player and loved the game but for some reason I don't think that she was picked first for any team. It is about the love of the game and good sportsmanship. Play Ball.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3708) 15 years ago
Hebrew National 1/4 Pound All-Beef Franks are the best hot dogs I've ever had. Only 350 calories per dog
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Posted by Eric Brandt (+841) 15 years ago
"Touch'e!!"
Touché? Quoi? Merci quand-même, mais il ne faudra jamais me toucher. ça va toi?
I wasn't fencing? I was simply making observation.


"Besides Eric in my 33 years of playing softball I have never seen you near the field so you may be over qualified on this subject."
Huh? Maybe you haven't seen me because I do all my staking from behind the brush... ROFL LOL

Actually, I don't watch softball because I can't follow that little yellow ball over the net.

What exactly are you trying to say? How does my participation in some sport change the facts of this subject?


"Not all kids are welcome as they want to be able to control their numbers."
That sounds strange, could you supply us with some sensory-based evidence that this group is trying to limit their numbers?

"The softball teams playing at Bender are using Metal Bats (not all are aluminum)."
That is part of the issue here. Why can your park users' permit say nothing about metal bats, but the Outlaws contract specifically prohibited them? Unless a law is passed banning metal bats (or aluminum specifically) then I don't think it is appropriate to micro-manage that aspect of free citizens' lives. Furthermore, our law structure should be protecting us from fascist behaviors.

Aux armes citoyens!
Formez vos bataillons,
Marchons, marchons!
Qu'un sang impur
Abreuve nos sillons.

---- La Marseillaise

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Posted by Eric Brandt (+841) 15 years ago
Coach Brabant:
I hadn't addressed payment of a fee. I think a fee is perfectly appropriate, but until there is a law addressing it, then it seems pretty hard to request one, let alone enforce it.

I don't think there should be any permit required for any group unless reserved exclusive times are requested. But that group then needs to understand they are sharing with the public at that time.

If a group wants exclusive time, then I would support an appropriate ordinance providing specific, standard and consistent permit language - with an appropriate fee.

The price of such a fee should not be more than the cost of administering and maintaining the facility though, and needs to be consistent.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+12134) 15 years ago
Albertson's had Hebrew National dogs last summer. I'll have to check and see if they still do. You need a real hoagie bun for them 'cause they are longer than those 'hot dog' buns.
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Posted by extreme conditions (+36) 15 years ago
Eric,(Did you mean staking or stalking?)
You wrote many different scenarios about the use of public parks. Most of them involved use of a general recreational park that is not used for scheduled sports events.Which is a totally different situation. The occasional use of a park for private gatherings is perfectly acceptable in my opinion.
Roy Slusher fields where made for softball and should be used for that purpose. Even an occasional private game of softball is ok when no other scheduled team softball event is going on. But to move in and take over the fields for your own "private" league is not acceptable.
Tina and Eric,
I certainly need no other proof that the "OutLaw" league is discriminatory then my own son's hurt feelings. Most of the kids on his 2006 baseball team were "invited" to play in the "Outlaw" league at the end of the regular league's season and he was not.I also stand behind my comment that Miles City is to small of a town to have to baseball leagues.
I am also very sorry Brandon Patch was killed while he played baseball but he died doing something he loved.I also truely believe metal bat or not Brandon would have been called to heaven that day.

I truely believe the metal bat versus wood bat issue is a non-issue. In girls fast pitch they use metal bats and the pitchers stand 30 feet from the batter and end up in a position that leaves them completely vulnerable to a line-drive.I think the real reason the "outlaw" league was created was so that the "stars" could all play togther and not have to share playing time with others.
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Posted by J. Dyba (+1346) 15 years ago
"I think the real reason the "outlaw" league was created was so that the "stars" could all play togther and not have to share playing time with others."


That sounds about status quo for the Miles City I love and remember. Of course, that's how the real world works too. The question that needs answered I guess is if you want kids learning that fact at such a young age?
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
Back before it wasn't strictly verboten to compete in high school track AND Mavs baseball, I remember having to make the choice between the two sports - I went with track because it was far less elitist. You didn't have to part of a certain crowd in order to run (or throw) track and the best times/distances won out. I would have loved to have continued playing baseball in high school, however.
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Posted by Eric Brandt (+841) 15 years ago
extreme:
Yes, I definitely meant "stalking" - sorry about the mispelin :-)

Regarding the use of fields / parks. Where does one draw the line on which group is required to have a park users' permit?

I think the only time a permit should be enforceable is when a group is demanding EXCLUSIVE access to the resource. If no one is scheduled for a field and my buddies and I want to play softball (yes Roxanna, I actually CAN play softball, and FYI I bat equally poorly with the either hand), then do I need a park users' permit to use the field if no one else is scheduled at that time? If someone else wants to use the field, then well, there isn't much I can do about it other than be civil. Just like if some one wants to use a tree in the park for a picnic next to where my nephew and I are playing catch.

Now, someone with a PAID PERMIT has, of course, been given the authority to kick me off my toad stool and use it.


---------------------- SO

What if my band of merry men and I decide to meet weekly at the field (where no one has reserved it) and play, and we call ourselves "The Men In Tights". Does that change anything?

Now, lets say Dumble Dork wants to join our group. Dumble isn't one of our friends and we won't let him play with us. Does that really change anything? (of course, we can't stop Dumble from playing catch with himself somewhere on the field)

Now, The Men In Tights decides to whack balls against The Tinkerbells... Same field, same lack of reservation... Does that change anything?

At what point do we REQUIRE the permit? Again, I purport that the permit is only necessary when one group wants EXCLUSIVE access and the groups are not yet mature enough to work things out on their own.

How does the scenario change for some league?
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Posted by Bishop (+39) 15 years ago
Brian,

As someone just a few years older than you, I disagree with your statement that baseball was an elitist sport. When I played baseball in the early 1990's, players off our teams were from a variety of socioeconomic backgrounds. Unlike many team sports in Miles City, baseball does not cut players.

It is not taxpayer subsidized, so there was a cost to play. But the cost of feeding a teenager isn't cheap either, and the team provided many meals and motels stays for our expense of playing.

Our coach, Jon Plowman, allowed members of the track team to play for the Mavericks. I teamed with a few such athletes. In addition, players from other towns were encouraged to play for the Mavericks. These players (from Broadus, Baker, Terry, Forsyth, and Colstrip) practiced only during the weekends til school was out. Often, these players were only able to practice on Sundays because they ran track for their respective high schools.


Rick Bishop


[This message has been edited by Bishop (edited 6/13/2007).]
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
Hi Rick - perhaps elitist was the wrong word. Cliquish might have been a better choice. There was definite feeling that if you were a certain someone, was related to a certain someone or were friends with a certain someone, that you would be welcome to play. If you weren't, then ... there was always track. That's nothing against those certain someones, but it wasn't the most welcoming atmosphere. I remember hearing in rather certain terms that if you were going to be in track, you were going to be in track and if you were going to play baseball, you were going to play baseball - one or the other.
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Posted by Janel Larson (+134) 15 years ago
Brian -
I will be zipping up my flame suit before I write this but.... Did anyone come flat out and say that if you were not a certain someone you were not welcome to play? Don't get me wrong I wasn't there I am just wondering how much perception has come into play with baseball in Miles City. Everyone talks about how you have to be rich, or popular to play. Is this something that has been said or is a personal perception from people on the outside looking in? (That is a question, not a statement.)
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
Hi Janel,

I remember it being said to me, and I remember the feeling at the time. Keep in mind that this was 16 (yikes!) years ago.

Nothing I said was intended as a slap at any of the players, and the majority of the players who played for the Mavs at the time (Bryan, Joe Baker, Dustin Frize, the Wagners and Regans, etc. - we weren't in the same group of friends, but we did play football together, adn things were just fine there) were ever stand-offish in that manner. Some others on the team were, however.

I just recall an in-crowd and not-in crowd when it came to baseball.

[This message has been edited by Brian A. Reed (edited 6/13/2007).]
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3708) 15 years ago
16 (yikes!) years ago.

Those numbers just keep getting more and more disturbing don't they? I did that just the other day counting backwards to some event that happened while I was in high school and dang, it doesn't seem like that long ago.
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
I was thinking as I was typing, "16 years...half my life...WHAT THE HECK!?"
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Posted by Janel Larson (+134) 15 years ago
Brian -
Please know I was not trying to pinpoint you and the rest of the mavs players at the time. The fact that I was married to a coach actually doesn't play into any of this. It's just that you are not the only one to have mentioned something about it and I am just wondering if this was a part of baseball back then (boy, now I feel old) or if it is Miles City thinking in general.
I know that I have felt out of place in many social situations in Miles City but no one ever did or said anything to me, it was more just my perception of what people thought. I guess I am just curious to life in general, just so happens it was brought up on a baseball blog.
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
No worries, Janel.
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Posted by Mayor (+134) 15 years ago
Last night, after a public hearing without protest, the City Council unanimously passed Ordinance #1169: An Ordinance Requiring Permits for Exclusive Use of Parks or Other City Facilities and Providing a Penalty for Violation Thereof, a copy of which may be viewed or secured at City Hall by request.

This ordinance was introduced for three reasons:
· To allow the City to control its exposure to liabilities associated with recurring youth sports activities on city property,
· To resolve scheduling conflicts between sports organizations over our finite number of playing fields,
· To provide a process whereby the City may determine the reasonable use of its facilities related to location, duration and impact upon public property and safety.

Each of these provisions requires the use of a lease administrator to consider permits on a case-by-case basis. Not all City facilities are the same, not all recurring schedules are the same, not all youth sports organizations are the same, and the impact of recurring activity on public property and safety can vary widely. The whole of the community is invested in city facilities and attached liabilities and its interests necessarily outweigh the enthusiasms of a few. Judgments must be made on behalf of the entire City.

Fortunately, this ordinance was designed with an inherent appeals process so that an applicant may take his/her case to the City Council for final remedy if the lease administrator or mayor denies approval or if the applicant finds the terms unacceptable. Because our local government is a representative democracy, the City Council's decision in such appeals speaks for the will of the people.

RE: Eric Brandt on Fairness and Fascism

Eric was not present during my meeting in the mayor's office in April with the spokesmen of the Outlaw Baseball Club when we discussed the terms of their park user permit application. He was not present when the City's offer of a park user permit was presented to the Outlaw Baseball Club. He was not present when the Public Safety Committee recently met to discuss Ordinance #1169 and its relationship to the activities of the Outlaw Baseball Club. And he's not visited with either our lease administrator or myself to better understand why their park user permit was designed as it was.

He simply decided to publicly broadcast his assumptions as fact and the City's process as "fascist behaviors". Does that sound fair to you?

I was present at all of those meetings and I'm the person responsible for adding the clause that prohibited the use of all metal bats during practice and home games and I'll tell you why.

1. The Outlaw Baseball Club proposed to rehabilitate Stanley Field at little cost to the City and I thought it was a sound idea. They worked through the proper channels to make it happen but were derailed by strong opposition by members of the Public Safety Committee and City Council due to sympathy for the Patch family and expressed concern in the community over the use of metal bats by the Club.
2. I was assured that initial irregularities regarding insurance and organization structure had been corrected in their application.
3. The spokesmen for the Outlaw Baseball Club expressed to me that it was "a non-issue" for the Club whether or not wooden or metal bats were used.
4. There was nothing in our Code of Ordinances prohibiting the Outlaw Baseball Club from taking the field, only the "paper tiger" tradition of asking youth sports organizations to complete a park user permit before each season. Some complied, some did not but securing a park user permit was clearly preferable to the City from a liability standpoint.

So, given that Stanley Field had turned into a "dogtown" and needed the rehabilitation, that members of Council representing 3 of 4 wards had expressed opposition to the use of metal bats on public parks, that the Club had secured insurance and a more stable list of contacts, that the use of wooden or metal bats was a stated non-issue to the Club, and that there was nothing in the Code to prevent the Club from taking the field - I offered a park user permit granting the use of Stanley Field to the Outlaw Baseball Club with a metal bat prohibition clause attached as a means of improving Stanley Field, securing liability protection for the City, providing several youngsters with a new ballpark, and satisfying the expressed concerns of members of Council believing that no reasonable person could be unhappy with that kind of compromise.

The response to the offer from the spokesmen?

"No one tells the Outlaw Baseball Club what to do!"

That's when we started work on Ordinance #1169. The Outlaw Baseball Club may now carry their appeal to the City Council.
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Posted by Eric Brandt (+841) 15 years ago
Careful.

"He simply decided to publicly broadcast his assumptions as fact and the City's process as "fascist behaviours""

My physical presence at a given meeting cannot justify your false claim that I merely made "assumptions". I stated FACTS. The RECORDINGS, MINUTES and DOCUMENTS I observed support my FACTS 100%. Your "justification" posted here only validates my previous observations.

OBSERVE:
I shall make my observations based on the following available EVIDENCE:
> Public Safety Committee Minutes
> City Council Minutes from several Meetings
> Audio Recording of Public Safety Committee Meeting
> Video recordings from TWO City Council meetings regarding this issue
> Copies of Park User's Permits indicating discrimination
> Copy of Ordinance #1169
> Mayor Whalen's trite post on this forum

Fact:
Mayor Whalen produced a park user's permit specifically denying ONE group the right to use LEGAL sports gear.

Fact:
Mayor Whalen has not publicly demonstrated evidence regarding the safety of specific, germane, legal sports gear during public meetings on the issue.

Fact:
Mayor Whalen disclosed that "sympathy" was considered in his decision to prohibit legal sports gear.

Fact:
The Ordinance #1169 just passed re: Park User's Permits
No clauses prohibiting specific gear, much less bats.

Fact:
Ordinance #1169 has a clause containing:
"...such issuance ultimately being in the the SOUND discretion of the City Council"

=========================================
Comments:

"They worked through the proper channels to make it happen but were derailed by strong opposition by members of the Public Safety Committee and City Council due to sympathy for the Patch family and expressed concern in the community over the use of metal bats by the Club."

What concern is valid in this case? Safety? Close the pool, and drop the idea of an ATV park. If you are genuinely concerned about safety, observe that those activities have killed more people in Custer County in the last several years alone than EVER from metal bats.

Pointing out that the OUTLAWS "...worked through the proper channels but were derailed..." is making the OUTLAWS seem more like IN-LAWS at every turn.

We hired you to make SOUND, RATIONAL and EVIDENCE-BASED decisions. We didn't ask for Kleenex(r), we asked for SOUND DISCRETION.

-------------------------

"...that members of Council representing 3 of 4 wards had expressed opposition to the use of metal bats on public parks..."

THEN MAKE A LAW THAT SUPPORTS THAT POSITION. You CAN make law. You CANNOT break it! (And there are LAWS on MAKING LAWS)

-----------------------------

"I offered a park user permit granting the use of Stanley Field to the Outlaw Baseball Club with a metal bat prohibition clause attached as a means of improving Stanley Field"

Translation: "You can invest in the City's public assets so long as you give up your rights."

YOU took it upon YOURSELF to add that clause? Like it or not, that is a fascist behaviour.

-----------------------------

"The response to the offer from the spokesmen?
"No one tells the Outlaw Baseball Club what to do!""


Honestly, what did you expect? You just violated their rights with no LAW to back yourself up. I would have refused to sign the agreement too.

------------------------------

I'm not sure a public official calling out a citizen by name, especially when that official is wrong, is the wisest of behaviours.

If you don't like doing fascist behaviours, then don't do it again. It is appropriate to learn from this mistake and move on.

Listen, I'll give it to you that it was just a simple mistake. Some mistakes are forgiveable. You generally do provide good democratic leadership, but when you are wrong, which we all are, just take your hit, fix yourself, and put it behind you.
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Posted by Rick Kuchynka (+4459) 15 years ago
Must be cage-match week on MilesCity.com

Eric, I know where you're coming from, but you need to put yourself in these guys' shoes. This is a very difficult subject for anyone who lives here, and using the "F" word (fascist ) isn't going to help the dialog. I hope we can keep the local politics stuff more polite than I've been doing with the bigger-picture political stuff. Obviously we need to be more careful because I think our tone must be contagious.
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Posted by Joshua Rauh (+4) 15 years ago
I want to address the entire MC baseball community, but I will go in turn.

Brain A. Reed,
You need to be very careful with the word elitist when talking about Maverick Baseball. I'm sure that there are many former Mavericks who would love to hear themselves referred to as elitists. I can imagine the Saylors, Smothermans, Hubbles, Hawks, Lancasters, Tonkaviches, and Larsons going around with an elitist attitude. Brian, you had every oppurtunity to play Maverick Baseball. If you would have made the team you would have been given every oppurtunity to play. Part of me, a whole lot of me, thinks that there were other reasons you didn't come out for the team. You were one year ahead of me and I don't remember you ever trying out or getting shunned by us "elitists." Coach Plowman, who was coach when you were of age, had some faults, but one of them was not playing kids because of their elitist status. Now I could be painfully honest here on this issue, but I'll decline.

To the rest of Miles City, there was a time not to long ago that kids played for the Mavericks for the thrill of playing the game for a city that adored them. I'm pretty sure that I remember this fairly well. It's only been 11 years that Miles City Baseball was supreme in Montana. Now everyone wants to jump on the bat issue as the fault for the decline in Maverick Baseball. Well, the problem started before that tragic night in Helena. Numbers declined years before metal bats were even an issue. Too many video games and too much apathy. Kids didn't want to sacrifice their entire summer to play for the Mavs. It's much easier to create yourself on a Playstation game than it is to actually be out there doing it. The kids in MC and everywhere need to get off their butts and go play the game. You learn more about yourself playing in a tight game than you ever will flexing your thumbs on a video game. Careful, you might actually become a man, fighting through pain and adversity instead of resetting the game console.

On the metal bat issue, for those of you who think that the Patches and MCYBA ruined MC baseball by sticking to their guns, you can go to a hot and dreaded place. Miles City, for once is being a progressive community in dealing with metal bats. Aluminim bats should have been outlawed the moment they were created. Besides the safety factor which I'll get to in a minute, they have ruined youth baseball across the country. By giving a kid a metal bat you are giving them a tool to succeed when they shouldn't. All metal bats do is inflate stats. Heaven forbid that a kid should learn to get his bat around on a fastball with a wooden bat. Heaven forbid that a kid is taught to sacrifice bunt or be a situational hitter rather than just try for the long ball. A metal bat allows this same kid, who doesn't want to learn how to hit, to get Texas League singles off the handle of an aluminum bat, that if made of wood shatters in his hands and he is thrown out at first like he should be. Any kid who can hit 400 with metal should pick up a wooden bat and see if they can duplicate that stat. He'll probably hit 250. George Will cited this problem back in the 80's in his book "Men at Work." NCAA pitchers have quit throwing inside because it does them no good throwing against metal bats. They throw junk outside all day because any 120 lb. joker can fist a ball to right center with a metal bat when they have been beaten by a fastball. Sadly, a fastball pitcher would have better chances at success by forgoing college and entering the ranks of professional baseball. That is a fact sad as it may be.

Safety. You have got to be kidding me that there are parents in MC that think their kids baseball futures are ruined because of wooden bats. I caught for the Mavs for 2+ years and another year in college and I am amazed that we have had only one casualty in 80+ years of Maverick Baseball. That sickeneing thud off a pitchers chest, thigh, ankle, whatever, should turn your stomach. If not for luck, the national media could have been doing stories on a Wagner, Larson, Johnson, Lockie, Toepke, or any other Mav pitcher. They all had comebackers go flying past their heads, or hitting them in non-vital places in almost every game we played. The fact is the ball comes off a metal bat faster than it does off a wooden bat. The metal bat companies in this country have the same moral base as the tobacco companies. Watch the College World Series this year, and you will see numerous ads about the power and speed generated by the next great thing in aluminum bats. Go to a court hearing about the dangers of aluminum bats and you will hear these same companies vowing, under oath, that there is no difference between a metal bat and a wooden bat. A common argument is that wooden bats cost more due to replacement issues. Most bat companies that make aluminum bats also make wooden bats, i.e. Louiville Slugger and Easton. If this is so, wouldn't they stand to make more money if the whole country used wood as opposed to the inexpensive metal. Their argument dosen't hold water, because it's full of BS.

I played with aluminum bats. I was an average hitter with an aluminum bat. I should have been a dreadful hitter had I used wood. I played because of defense and the fact that I could bunt. I know the benefits of an aluminum bat when it comes to getting cheap singles or beating an outfielder when I shouldn't. That doesn't make it right. Those of you who think your kids are being cheated by MCYBA's stance on metal bats should really ask yourselves, "What is success for my kid in baseball." If it is making the major leagues, MC is doing him a favor by playing with wood. If it is playing in college, I think Coach Bishop and other college coaches have apretty good handle on who is hitting because they are a hitter and who is hitting because they are fisting the ball with an aluminum bat. If your goal is having your kid compete and have a good time while being safe on the diamond, MCYBA has their ducks in a row and you should be proud to have your kid be a part of a great Montana Baseball tradition.

To the Outlaws, I've heard strange and troubling arguments about the way baseball is taught in MC. For instance, "everyone throws like a catcher or third baseman." Do you mean that everyone in MCYBA has a quick release and a rocket arm. Things are looking good in MCYBA. Stop being part of the problem and start being part of the solution. Metal bats have no place in youth baseball.

Just some thoughts from an old Mavericks catcher.
Joshua Rauh
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Posted by Brian A. Reed (+6116) 15 years ago
Josh - I changed elitist to cliquish. Baseball is cliquish, especially in a small town. Any sport is, but it's more of a salient issue with a non CCDHS-team. I meant no offense, and I wasn't trying to make a personal issue out of the matter. I was just stating that, at the time at least, an air of exclusivity existed with the team. Not being on the team, I don't know if it was intentional or not. Maybe there's an air of exclusivity with every team, and I just didn't notice it from the inside of the teams I was on. Again, I meant no offense to you, or anyone that I previously mentioned by name, Josh.

For the love of all that is good, please don't let this thread turn into another discussion about bats.
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Posted by Art Jacobsen (+49) 15 years ago
Eric:

On June 9th you posted on this thread "We seriousely need to diffuse this issue a little bit and just play ball!"

On June 12th your post alludes to fascist behavior by our city government.

On June 13th you post about fascist behavior by our Mayor.

I ask you to take your own advice of June 9th and diffuse this issue.

You are capable of expressing your opinion and contributing to constructive dialog.

Thank you
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supporter
Posted by Cindy (+383) 15 years ago
I'm wondering - does anyone know who the Board of Directors are for MCYBA? If anyone does, could you post the names here for me? thanks!
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Posted by JJC (+85) 15 years ago
My kids are playing T-ball and minor softball in another town in Montana. The coach of the team pitches to their own players. As I was sitting and watching, I got a great idea. Why don't coaches pitch to the older players, too. That way if a ball hit by a metal bat hits the pitcher, it isn't a kid that gets hurt. Maybe when it is the adults who put themselves in front of projectile missles, things might change. Just a thought.

PS- Even North Dakotan high school baseball teams aren't dumb enough to use metal bats anymore!
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supporter
Posted by Bridgier (+9389) 15 years ago
"I think the real reason the "outlaw" league was created was so that the "stars" could all play togther and not have to share playing time with others."

I'm starting to think that some people here don't really understand how club teams work.
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