Posted on January 8, 2013 by CJ Siewert
The 2012 calendar year is in the books and it was another memorable year for Minnesota amateur baseball. With that in mind, let’s take a look back at the highlights of the 2012 season.
Andy Gibart, Josh Thygesen and Dustin LaRue (Red Wing) vs. Hampton – May 6
Matt Neuger, Jeff Brisbos and Jeremiah Leiviska (Dundas) vs. Wanamingo – May 9
Kyle Green (Shakopee Indians) vs. Henderson – May 22
Eric Pokornowski (Cokato) vs. Dassel-Cokato – May 25
Chris Knoll (Green Isle) vs. St. Boni – May 31
Mitch Wurm (Maple Lake) vs. Buffalo – June 2
State Tourney: Kyle Collins (Avon) vs. Cannon Falls – September 1
Invitational tournament champions
Shakopee Indians – 2012 Northwest Amateur Baseball Championships (Fargo-Moorhead)
Sobieski Skis – Stearns County Classic
Lastrup Lakers – 6th Annual Omann Insurance Invite (Sartell)
New Prague Orioles – New Prague Invite
Metro Merchants – Cannon Falls Tourney
Moorhead Bluejays – Buffalo City Classic (N.D.)
Victoria Vic's - Victoria Tournament
Stockmen’s Irish – Stockmen’s Irish tournament
Elmwood Expos (Wis.) – Carver Cologne Tournament
Prior Lake Mudcats – Howard Lake Good Neighbor Days Tournament
Buffalo Bulldogs – Hinckley tournament
Midway Snurdbirds – 6th Annual Nimrod Invite
Red Wing Aces – 2012 Jordan/Shakopee Coors Light Classic
A week-long poll conducted on the MBA home and social media pages to determine the “Best Amateur Ballpark in Minnesota” brought in hundreds of votes and a top-5 was named.
1. “Jack Ruhr Field” Miesville
2. “Original Ballpark in Arlington”
3. “Mini Met” Jordan
4. “Athletic Park” Chaska
5. “Irish Yard” Green Isle
New park... The Milroy Irish opened their new home, "Irish Yard" on June 2.
The first Class C rankings were released on May 25 with the 2011 State runner-up Waconia Lakers topping the list. Seven of the initial top-10 teams reached the State tournament (Waconia, Blue Earth, Jordan, Fergus Falls, Winsted, Sobieski and Lastrup), while the Maple Lake Lakers claimed the title after receiving only one vote on May 25.
After bi-weekly polls, the final Class C rankings of the season were released on July 20 with Lastrup at the top. Reminiscent of the first rankings, seven top-10 teams made it to the State tourney (Lastrup, Blue Earth, Midway, Waconia, Jordan, Sobieski and Union Hill). At this point, Maple Lake received only a half vote.
The Class B rankings also concluded on July 20 and four of the top-10 made the eight-team State tourney (Mankato, Sauk Rapids, Cold Spring and Victoria). The Mankato Twins held the first place vote in all three polls throughout the season and finished fifth at State, while Victoria claimed its first title after being ranked No. 5.
The Millers claimed their 11th Class A State Championship at Red Haddox Field in Bloomington with an 11-5 victory over the Minneapolis Angels.
The Vic's claimed their first-ever State title with a 5-3 win in game one and 4-1 win in game two against Cold Spring in the Class B title game at Dick Putz Field in St. Cloud.
The Lakers claimed the Class C title with a 6-4 victory over the Fairmont Martins at Joe Faber Field in St. Cloud, marking the third time Maple Lake won a State title, but first since 1939.
Dennis “Soup” Campbell – Winsted
Don Giesen – Union Hill
Bob Karn – St. Cloud
Herb Kock – Loretto
Jime Peck – Excelsior
Carl “Red” Wyczawski – New Ulm
William “Mac” McGowan – Gibbon (1908-2012)
Tom Gwaltney – Lake City (1942-2012)
Gerry "Mize" Meyer of Belle Plaine received the 2012 Mike Downes Award for "outstanding service to Minnesota Amateur Baseball."