We have two bits of personnel news today: Greg Seyfer is the new president of the Cedar Rapids Kernels (Low Class A; Midwest League), while Zach Fraser will be the GM of the Yakima Valley Pippins (summer collegiate; West Coast League).
Seyfer succeeds Gary Keoppel as president. In addition, Greg Churchill was elected Vice President.
“The Board of Directors thank Gary for serving as the club’s president for the past five years,” Seyfer said. “He has done a tremendous job in leading the implementation of the organization’s strategic plan of supporting the community, building a solid financial foundation, and preserving and promoting the game of baseball.”
“I’ve enjoyed my time as President of the Cedar Rapids Ball Club and look forward to continuing to contribute and support the organization,” Keoppel said. “I am confident that Greg Seyfer will do a great job of leading the club.”
In addition to the changes on the Board of Directors, the club also announced organizational changes in the front office. Doug Nelson has been named Chief Executive Officer of the Cedar Rapids Ball Club and will oversee the organization’s three operating divisions: Cedar Rapids Kernels, Waterloo Bucks (summer collegiate; Northwoods League) and Kernels Concessions. Scott Wilson has been promoted to General Manager of the Cedar Rapids Kernels and Dan Corbin will continue to serve as the General Manager of the Waterloo Bucks.
“I’m going to be the GM,” Fraser said. “I thought we had a guy lined up, but ultimately it seemed like he didn’t want to be in Yakima as much as he wanted the position. And we have too much invested, and not just cash-wise but regarding connections and emotional prospects. We couldn’t afford to go that route.”
So Fraser, who also serves as chief operating officer of the Pacific Baseball Ventures ownership group which runs both the Pippins and the WCL’s Walla Walla Sweets, chose to step in. He had been heavily involved in launching the franchise, and oversaw day-to-day activities after the team’s first director of operations, Noel Zanchelli, was let go at mid-season.