In today’s ballpark news, Steve Degler moves to the TV booth for Lehigh Valley and Reading games; the Defenders announce all opening-night ticket revenues will go to a local Extreme Makeover family; the Miners schedule an exhibition at Cape Girardeau; and Andrew Aguilar is the new GM of the next iteration of the Alexandria Aces.In today’s ballpark news, Steve Degler moves to the TV booth for Lehigh Valley and Reading games; the Defenders announce all opening-night ticket revenues will go to a local Extreme Makeover family; the Miners schedule an exhibition at Cape Girardeau; and Andrew Aguilar is the new GM of the next iteration of the Alexandria Aces.
Long-time Reading Phillies (Class AA; Eastern League) radio broadcaster Steve Degler will leave the booth to join Service Electric Cable TV2 Sports television broadcasts for both the R-Phils and the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Class AAA; International League).
Also announced were new television deals for both clubs with Service Electric and that former R-Phil and Major Leaguer Ricky Bottalico will join Reading’s TV broadcasts and stay as an occasional broadcaster for the IronPigs.
Degler had been the R-Phils primary radio voice since 1992 but also has done extensive TV work for the club, most recently on Service Electric broadcasts in 2008. He was the longest tenured broadcaster in the Eastern League. In his new role he’ll handle analysis for all 76 televised IronPigs games and play-by-play for all 20 televised R-Phils games.
Degler will team with returning members Mike Zambelli, Troy Hein, Matt Provence and Meredith Marakovits on the IronPigs TV Network. Jon Schaeffer completes the crew and joins Provence in handling radio duties on the IronPigs Radio Network.
The Connecticut Defenders (Class AA; Eastern League) have declared Opening Day on April 16 as Extreme Project 615 Volunteer Appreciation Night. The Defenders will be donating 100 percent of ticket revenue specifically generated from this project 615 to the Girard family, the beneficiary of a renovated home courtesy of TV’s Extreme Makeover.
“With the support of the community, a capacity of over 6,500 seats and tickets priced at $8, we as a community can help raise some major funds that will drastically benefit the Girard Family for years to come,” said Defenders General Manager Charlie Dowd.
Along with the ticket sales donation, the Defenders will be recognizing the numerous volunteers throughout the night, including pre-game festivities, an in-game check presentation to the Girard family, and a post-game tennis ball toss to raise some extra monies. Volunteers are encouraged to wear their blue volunteer shirts from the project, as photos will be a big part of the night.
For the first time in team history, the Southern Illinois Miners (independent; Frontier League) have scheduled a game in Cape Girardeau, Mo. The preseason exhibition game is scheduled for Saturday, May 9 at 7 p.m. at Capaha Field, home of the Southeast Missouri State baseball team.
“We want to reach out to our fans in Cape Girardeau who can’t always make it to Marion to see a game and give them the first look at this year’s team,” Miners General Manager Tim Arseneau said.
Proceeds from the game will benefit Capaha Field and Cape Youth Baseball. The game will be against Southern Illinois’ Frontier League rival Florence Freedom and will be the Miners first exhibition match of the season. A week later the team will be in Paducah’s Brooks Stadium for a preseason game against Evansville.
The Alexandria Aces (independent; Continental Baseball League ) announced the hiring of Andrew Aguilar as general manager. The 33-year-old Laramie, Wyoming native brings more than eleven years of professional baseball experience to the new Aces’ ownership group. Alexandria’s team is in its first year with the eight-team CBL.
Aguilar was assistant general manager (AGM) for the Alexandria Aces of the United League last season and was also AGM for the Jackson Senators of the Central League from 2002-2005. He has worked for the Jackson Diamond Kats of the Texas-Louisiana League and the Southern Oregon Timber Jacks of the Northwest League. Aguilar, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications/Broadcasting from UW, the school that produced broadcasting legend Curt Gowdy, began his professional baseball career as a radio broadcaster. Andrew even managed to broadcast games during his first several seasons as AGM, until deciding to focus his career on the front office.
“Andrew is a hard worker who loves baseball and knows what it takes to produce a successful organization,” said Eric Moran, Alexandria president and CEO, noting that three of Aguilar’s teams have won Organization of the Year awards. “I am excited to see the style and brand of baseball that the CBL will bring in here this season, as it should be fun for the fans of the Aces and again for the community.” Gorum, a Pineville, Louisiana native joins the Aces staff as Director of Group Sales and Ticket Operations. The 2009 season marks his first full year working in professional baseball. From 1998 – 2001 Ryan served as one the teams batboys and returned to the Aces organization in 2006 and assisted with the clubhouse duties.