Spring, even wet springs, mean two things: First, that summer is not far away and that ball fields will once again be full of kids playing baseball. And second, that on Lopez, the local baseball program has once again had a successful season where over 65 local youth were able to play ball.
Lopez Island Baseball had four teams this year including t-ball (ages 4-6), rookies (ages 7-8), minors (ages 9-10) and majors (ages 11-13). This year’s softball program, which traditionally serves girls from ages 10-13 suffered from the same problem as the high school baseball program and simply didn’t have enough players.
This year’s teams were excited to welcome some new coaching as well as a new league coach, Jeff Malinoff who made a career in baseball including being a professional scout for such organizations as the Seattle Mariners and the Anaheim Angles. Malinoff’s vision and experience were a valuable asset to the league this year as he was able to work with not only the kids with the coaches as well and help standardize teaching principles across all of the teams.
Games this year consisted primarily of away games. Friday Harbor was gracious enough to host numerous games at their facilities. Orcas Island, who opted to play little league this year on the mainland, invited the teams to come and play with them on Orcas for an early season game.
Holding to a long-standing tradition, Lopez teams also hosted a day of baseball at Odlin Park where Orcas teams came to play, eat and enjoy one of the unique baseball experiences available anywhere. With a field only steps away from the beach, spectacular views, parking to accommodate four teams worth of families and players, and fantastic picnic facilities this venue has become one of the leagues favorite stops.
The Lopez Island Baseball organization has been serving the community for over 10 years and now more than ever needs the communities help. Opportunities including coaching, board members, fundraising and parent/player organizers are always being filled, so if you have a passion for baseball or simply want to see baseball continue to have a place on Lopez, find out how you can help by visiting lopezislandbaseball.com.