Joe Cobb is a 5ft-11in Left-handed pitcher from Denver, NC. He is a Sophomore at Lenoir-Rhyne University where he majors in Business Management. You can follow him on Twitter @Joe_Cobb1 and on Instagram @iJoecobb.
FAVORITE MLB TEAM: Braves
BUBBLEGUM OR SEEDS: Gum
COOKIES OR ICE CREAM: Ice Cream
CATS OR DOGS: Dogs
MORNING or EVENING: Evening
NETFLIX OR YOUTUBE: Youtube
FAVORITE MOVIE & TV SHOW: The Goonies and Blacklist
FAVORITE GATORADE FLAVOR (COLOR): Blue
SOMETHING YOU’RE KNOWN FOR (OTHER THAN BASEBALL): Doing dumb things.
NAME ONE LIFE/CAREER GOAL: Make $$$
NAME SOMETHING ON YOUR BUCKET LIST: Own my own business at the beach.
Antonio Buckley is a 5ft-11in 180lb Left-handed pitcher from the nearby destination of Centreville, VA. He is a Senior at SE Louisiana University where he majors in Business. You can follow him on Twitter @antonio_buckley and on Instagram @antoniob_13.
FAVORITE MLB TEAM: Nationals
BUBBLEGUM OR SEEDS: Seeds
COOKIES OR ICE CREAM: Cookies
CATS OR DOGS: Dogs
MORNING or EVENING: Evening
TALKING OR LISTENING: Listening
NETFLIX OR YOUTUBE: Youtube
FAVORITE MOVIE & TV SHOW: The Departed, The Blacklist
FAVORITE GATORADE FLAVOR (COLOR): Blue
WEIRD OR HILARIOUS FACT ABOUT YOU: I love CranApple Juice
SOMETHING YOU’RE KNOWN FOR (OTHER THAN BASEBALL): Being bad at MLB the Show
Hello Rebel fans! The 2021 season is here and it’s time to get to know our players and coaches a little bit better!
To start, we’re going to learn about Harrison Clifton and Paul Winland Jr.!
Harrison Clifton is a 6ft-3in 190lb Sophomore Left-handed pitcher from Richmond, VA. He is a Finance major at the University of Richmond! You can follow him on Instagram @HarrisonClifton
FAVORITE MLB TEAM: Texas Rangers
BUBBLEGUM OR SEEDS: Seeds
COOKIES OR ICE CREAM: Ice Cream
CATS OR DOGS: Dogs
TALKING OR LISTENING: Listening
NETFLIX OR YOUTUBE: Netflix
FAVORITE MOVIE & TV SHOW: Friends and Legally Blonde
FAVORITE GATORADE FLAVOR (COLOR): Red
WEIRD OR HILARIOUS FACT ABOUT YOU: I’m friends with #42 Paul Winland Jr.
SOMETHING YOU’RE KNOWN FOR (OTHER THAN BASEBALL): Exceptional Fortnite IQ
NAME ONE LIFE/CAREER GOAL: I want to meet Indiana Jones
NAME SOMETHING ON YOUR BUCKET LIST: Returning to New Market, VA
Paul Winland Jr.
Paul Winland Jr. is a 6ft-3in 210lb Sophomore Infielder from St. Louis, Missouri. He is a Natural Resources major at the University of Missouri Columbia. You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram @PaulWinlandJr.
FAVORITE MLB TEAM: St. Louis Cardinals
BUBBLEGUM OR SEEDS: Seeds
COOKIES OR ICE CREAM: Ice Cream
CATS OR DOGS: Dogs
MORNING or EVENING: Morning
TALKING OR LISTENING: Talking
NETFLIX OR YOUTUBE: Youtube
FAVORITE MOVIE & TV SHOW: That 70s Show and The Happy Gilmore
FAVORITE GATORADE FLAVOR (COLOR): Lemon Lime
WEIRD OR HILARIOUS FACT ABOUT YOU: Harrison Clifton has never beat me in golf.
SOMETHING YOU’RE KNOWN FOR (OTHER THAN BASEBALL): Known for beating everyone in MLB the Show 21.
NAME ONE LIFE/CAREER GOAL: Get drafted
NAME SOMETHING ON YOUR BUCKET LIST: Take a trip to Ireland
Fall is here, and with the exception of MLB, baseball season (at least in this country) is over. Since we have such an impressive list of former Rebels who played professionally this year, I thought I’d give you an update on how their seasons went!
Alex Boshers – 2012 Rebels – Alex Boshers played this season for the Sioux Falls Canaries of the American Association. He pitched in 22 games, 21 of which he started. His record was 6-9 and he ended the season with a 6.2 ERA. His contract has been optioned for the 2020 season, so we look forward to seeing him again next year!
Trevin Eubanks – 2018 Rebels – Trevin Eubanks was a mid-season addition to the roster of the Shaumburg Boomers of the Frontier League. He appeared in 10 games for the Boomers, all in relief. He ended his season with a 1-0 record, and a 5.26 ERA.
John Cable – 2016 Rebels – John Cable was a second string Catcher for the Lake Erie Crushers of the Frontier League this season. He had 140 at bats in 43 games with 7 extra base hits and 9 RBI. He ended the season with a .221 avg.
Anthony Trovato – 2018 Rebels – Anthony Trovato was another mid-season sign this year, joining the Westside Wooly Mammoths of the United Shore Professional League. He pitched 10.1 innings of relief over 10 games, and ended his year with a nice little 2.61 ERA! Great job to Anthony!
Luke Johnson – 2017 Rebels – Some of us were disappointed not to see Luke Johnson’s name called in the draft this year, but we were happy to see him get an opportunity to play in the USPBL with the Eastside Diamond Hoppers. Luke appeared in 36 games, hitting .226 and leading his team in home runs with 10 (tied for second in the league)! Looking forward to seeing what he does next season!
Nick Cottone – 2017-18 Rebels – Nick Cottone played this season in the Empire Professional League for the Plattsburg Thunderbirds and the New Hampshire Wild. He pitched in 12 games, 6 of which he started. His record was 3-1 and his ERA at season’s end was 2.83. Congrats to Nick on what looks like a great first season!
Chase Sudduth – 2017-18 Rebels – Chase Sudduth signed with the Washington Wild Thing of the Frontier League early in their season this year. Unfortunately he did not get to stay with them long, ending up on the disabled list after just a few weeks. He did appear in 10 games and batted .161. I checked in with him a few weeks ago and he is healthy and expecting to get another chance next season! We look forward to seeing good things for Chase!
Reed Garrett – 2013 Rebels – Reed Garrett began his season in the bigs with the Detroit Tigers having been selected by them in the Rule 5 draft. He pitched in 15 innings over 13 games at that level, ending with a 8.22 ERA. Unfortunately the Tigers did not ultimately keep him and sent him back to the Texas Rangers where he was assigned to the Triple-A Nashville Sounds. He again spent his time pitching in relief and had more success with the Sounds pitching in 40 innings over 34 games, capturing 40 strike outs and posting a 4.91 ERA. Hoping to see Reed make another advancement to the MLB next season… it’s certainly a possibility!
Jimmy Kerrigan – 2014 Rebels – Jimmy Kerrigan spent the majority of his season with the Double-A Pensacola Blue Wahoos in the Minnesota Twins farm system. He appeared in 78 games for the Wahoos batting .209 with 9 HR, 11 2B and 15 stolen bases. He also did a stint in Triple-A Rochester where he batted .261 with another 6 home runs in 20 games. Hoping to see Jimmy have continued success and make it to the next level!
Kevin Woodall – 2015 Rebels – Kevin Woodall began his season fairly late with the Rookie level State College Spikes of the St. Louis Cardinals organization. Unfortunately he appeared in only one game, batting .250 before he was placed on the 60-day Disabled List. Not sure what his health concerns may be, but hoping he can recover and get another chance at the plate in future seasons!
Jacob Rhinesmith – 2017 Rebels – Jacob Rhinesmith spent his season in Class A Hagerstown with the Suns. He had a good season, batting .264 with 10 HR, 3 3B, 33 2B and 19 stolen bases. His solid performance even landed him a spot on the South Atlantic League All Star Roster. Rhinesmith was the one player I got a chance to see in action this summer, and though that particular game wasn’t a great one for him, It was good to see him, and good to know he’s had a solid season! Looking forward to the next one!
Brendan Donovan – 2016 Rebels – Brendan Donovan spent the majority of his season with the Class-A Peoria Chiefs in the St. Louis Cardinals farm system. Like Rhinesmith, he had a very solid season, batting .266 with 8 HR and 26 2B. For his final game of the season, Brendan was called up to the Triple-A Memphis Redbirds where he had the opportunity to bat 1.000 with 1 hit and 1 BB. I think Brendan Donovan is going to be fun to keep an eye on in coming seasons!
Jonathan Bowlan – 2016 Rebels – Jonathan Bowlan split his second professional season between the Class A Lexington Legends and the Class-A Advanced Wilmington Blue Rocks in the Kansas City Royals system. He had a great season, averaging a 3.14 ERA between the 2 teams. He famously pitched a nearly-perfect no-hitter for Wilmington back in July and holds an 11-5 record at the end of the 2019 season. He’s clearly a top prospect for a reason!
Garrett Kelly – 2014 Rebels – Garrett Kelly signed as a free agent with the Cubs last year, and spent most of this season with the Class-A Advanced Myrtle Beach Pelicans. He pitched 27 innings of relief over 19 games and ended his season with a 3.00 ERA. Unfortunately his season ended in August with a move to the DL, but we hope he’ll recover to do good things next year!
Chandler Raiden – 2017 Rebels – Chandler Raiden spent most of his 2019 season with the Class A Adv. Charlotte Stone Crabs. He pitched 55 innings of relief over 37 games and posted a 2.93 ERA with 9 saves. Towards the end of the season Chandler was promoted to AA Montgomery where he appeared in 5 games and pitched 6 innings earning him a 12.79 ERA.
Justin Crump – 2016 Rebels – Justin Crump was drafted this year but unfortunately did not appear in any games. We’ll keep you posted if he pops up on any rosters next year!
Reeves Martin – 2018 Rebels – Reeves Martin was drafted this year and began his season at the Class-A Short Season Everett AquaSox in the Seattle Mariners system. He was promoted after only 4 games to the West Virginia Power. Overall he pitched 27 innings in 20 games and ended with a 3.58 ERA. Not bad for a rookie season!
Keven Pimentel – 2017 Rebels – Keven Pimentel was another 2019 draftee and spent his rookie season with the Class A Short Season Boise Hawks in the Colorado Rockies system (fun fact, part of the season he would have been teammates with local boy Colton Harlow!). Keven threw 29 innings in 22 games and ended his season with an 8.8 ERA.
Nate Pawelcyzk – 2016-17 Rebels – Nate Pawelcyzk spent his rookie season with the Rookie-Advanced Great Falls Voyagers in the Chicago White Sox farm system. He pitched in 26 innings over 21 games, threw 26 SO and ended the season with a 3.81 ERA. Another solid rookie season for a Rebel alum! Hoping to see him do it again at a higher level next year!
Jake Washer – 2017 Rebels – Jake Washer began his rookie season with the Rookie-level Arizona League Cubs 2. He was very quickly promoted to the Class-A Short Season Eugene Emeralds. He had 70 AB in 22 games and posted a .257 batting average with 9 extra base hits. Looking forward to following Jake in the coming seasons!
That about does it until next season, though if you’re itching for baseball during the colder months, you can follow Frank Gailey (2005,06 Rebels) and Tyler Thompson (2014 Rebels) who are star pitchers in the Australia league where play begins in November!
Stenberg IV will be the New Market Rebels head coach for the 2020
capped his seventh year of college summer league coaching by leading
the Niagara Power of the New York Collegiate League to their
first-ever league championship in 2019, finishing at 34-12-1.
quality of coaches I had with me, who I found after a six or seven
week search, shared my vision for a summer season, the message that
we gave to the players stayed consistent throughout the summer –
come to the ballpark with energy every day and be coachable, was the
key to winning that championship,” Stenberg said in a phone
is a graduate of the University of Tampa, where he pitched for two
years. One year of independent league and four years of collegiate
playing experience, along with six years of collegiate and five years
of high school coaching, round out Stenberg’s portfolio.
the players that Stenberg has coached, thirteen were selected in the
Major League Baseball draft, 2010-2016, and five were free agent
signees. Three of those players were on 2019 Major League rosters:
right-hand pitchers Art Warren with the San Francisco Giants and
Trevor Richards with the Tampa Bay Rays, and left-hand pitcher Travis
Bergen, who worked 19.2 innings with the Giants and is now with the
Rays AAA-affiliate Buffalo Bison.
are very pleased to have a head coach of Arthur Stenberg’s
extensive and varied experience to be our 2020 field general,”
Rebels President and General Manager Bruce Alger said. “We are
counting on coach Stenberg being instrumental in achieving our goal
of winning the 2020 Valley Baseball League championship.”
the Valley League has a reputation of having good baseball, good
athletes, and is nationally known,” Stenberg said. “It’s a
place I’ve wanted to be. New Market’s been on my radar for some
time, so I’m happy to be here. I look forward to helping all of our
Rebels players get better so they can make a positive impact when
they’re back at their schools.”
Note to editors: Arthur Stenberg IV may be reached at 813.367.6046 (mobile).
“MO” WEBER, “THE LEGEND OF THE VALLEY,” HAS PASSED ON
“Mo” Weber, fondly known as “The Legend of the Valley,”
passed on July 26, 2019 at his residence in Luray, Virginia, across
Massanutten Mountain from his beloved Rebel Park, home of the Valley
Baseball League New Market Rebels.
was born June 24, 1923, in Trenton, NJ and grew up in Great Neck, NY.
His father was Max Weber, a highly regarded cubist and American
In 1930, the Museum of Modern
Art held a retrospective of his work, the first solo exhibition at
that museum of an American artist. He was praised as a “pioneer
of modern art in America” in a 1945 Life magazine
was a World War II veteran, having served with the U.S. Army in
used his G.I. Bill benefits to earn a bachelor’s degree at Winona
State Teacher’s College, now Winona State University, Minnesota.
He was baseball coach and manager for the Warriors 1946-1950 and was
inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2008.
coached in Colorado, South Dakota and Missouri before taking the head
coach position at the College iof
William and Mary.
couple of day’s after his last game as a Rebels assistant coach,
June 23, 2010, Mo was the subject of an article by Jeremy Stafford in
Virginia Daily, which
fortunate to get a job that I love in a place I love, and I’m just
sorry I have to leave,” Weber said. “I guess I thought I could do
it this year and I didn’t give it any consideration till the year
began to roll on.”…
The assistant coach tried to
speak to each player in the dugout during a game, whether they were
playing well or not. He admitted he had a soft spot for those players
who didn’t excel.
was inducted into the Valley Baseball League Hall of Fame, class of
2017, with this citation:
“MO” WEBER (Elected as Coach)
Coached baseball for over 65
years, including the final 17 as hitting coach, for the New Market
Rebels… Served as the head coach at The College of William and Mary
in 1965 and again from 1978-1981… Was later the
General Manager of the
Peninsula Pilots, a White Sox affiliate in the Carolina League… The
VBL Coach of the Year award was named after him in 2008… His #1
jersey has been retired by the New Market Rebels.
had a witty sense of humor. Among the jokes he liked tell were: “You
know how I stay sharp? I live on the edge of town;” and “When I
played in the minor leagues I told them ‘I’m a low ball hitter
and a high ball drinker’”.
was married to his wife, the former Dorothy Babbitt, for 52 years.
She passed in December, 2017.
his book, Safe At
Home: A Season in the Valley Leagueii,
an account of the New Market Rebels’ 2009 season,Austin Gisriel
devotes Chapter 3 to Mo Weber. Some excerpts, used with permission:
[At a dinner with Mo] After 20 minutes, I finally get to the first question that I wanted to ask, which is “Why baseball?’’ “I don’t know,” answers Mo immediately, “I’ve often asked myself that same question.” There is a long pause, and he tries to come up with an answer, noting that being little didn’t preclude him from playing baseball, as it did other sports. “When I was in high school, I wrestled. They used to call me ‘Rembrandt’ because I was always on the canvas,” he deadpans. “For some reason, I liked baseball better than other sports.” (p.23)
…I asked Mo for a hitting lesson for my friend Al Smith and me… We’ve already spent 45 minutes in the dugout listening to Mo discuss the most difficult art of hitting a baseball. Mo discusses the .4 seconds that a batter, on average, has to see the pitch, recognize it and its location, and then swing the bat. Calling it the “simultaneous moment of truth,” Mo is adamant about the necessity to be quick, and with an almost evangelical fervor, he tells us to eliminate “any extraneous motion that inhibits the acceleration of the bat.” Listening to Mo discuss hitting is like listening to Sir Isaac Newton and Billy Graham at the same time. (pp. 19-20)
“I’ve been a big fish in some very small ponds. Never made any money at the game. But I’ve been fortunate to just be around the game. I’ve been fortunate to have a good mentor from the start, and I’ve been fortunate to end up in New Market. They’ve been good to me,” says Mo, citing as an example the fact that, largely at the urging of Bruce Alger, the VBL created the Coach of the Year Award and named it in Mo’s honor. (p.30)
a newspaper article about Mo’s passing, Rebels President and VBL
Commissioner Bruce Alger said:
that knows Mo or spent five minutes with him, the relationship or the
talk always went straight baseball, and not only to baseball but the
hitting as well. That was his specialty,” Alger said on Monday.
“And the number of young men that he touched far exceeded even the
numbers that I thought, because the emails and text messages and
phone calls that I’ve received from coaches that he coached with
here and throughout his college coaching career, I mean it’s just
been enormous. They just keep coming and keep coming and keep
It has been a New Market Rebels tradition to celebrate Mo’s birthday during the home game closest to his birthday, serving cake to all in attendance. The Rebels will continue this tradition to honor Mo.
In 2015 when Mo was elected onto the New Market Rebels “Wall of Fame”, I spoke to several former coaches and players who reflected on their memories of Mo. I put these memories into a book for Mo at that time, but we will also share some of them here for you:
” I will never forget his wit and sense of humor. One of the many memorable moments I had with him was when he accompanied Spencer Clifft and I to McDonalds for a pre-game snack (don’t know what we were thinking haha). Well Spencer got a large sweet tea and noticed there was a fly in it, so the first thing Mo says is “Look, that fly is doing the backstroke!” We all laughed for the next several minutes and whenever I think of Mo, I think of that story. I will also never forget his sayings, such as “that’s as reliable as a screen door on a submarine”. I thoroughly enjoyed my 3 years with Mo in New Market!” Jake Geungerich 2009-20011
“I’ll always remember Mo’s love for baseball, love for people, and amazing sense of humor. He has a new joke to tell in every conversation. 2 years after I played at New Market when I was playing in Harrisonburg, I was so excited to see that Mo was still coming out for the games. He remembered me right away and we talked again about that summer in New Market. God has blessed him with a long life full of baseball and laughs, and I’m just happy I could be a small part of it. ” Ryan Brown 2010
“Mo always told us to hit it on the “sweet” part of the wood, being the barrel. He always took such good care of his convertible car too. He was the happiest man alive when he was around the ball diamond. I will always remember him.” Ryley Westman 2006
” My best memory of Mo Weber would be how after every practice he’d put the top down on his little Sebring and go get a milk shake at Burger King” Ben Crowell 2004-2005
“Coach Weber taught me how to belly hit. I don’t know how many else got this guidance but it definitely made me better. Mo is the best! ” Kevin White 2003
“Manny being Manny was a phrase stolen from Mo Being Mo. What can you say about a guy that has literally seen it all in baseball. What I will remember about my time with Mo will certainly be all the stories he tells and times he has encountered but for me it’s Mo the person. He is so kind and genuine. There is never a moment where it is not ALL about the players and their experience when you are with Mo. He has helped me realize that through my career. He also helped me loosen up by his laughter and love for the game. I owe Mo so much, he doesn’t even realize the impact Mo Being Mo had on me. I love his passion and I love him.” Coach Lucas Jones 2009
“I started off my summer in the Valley very poorly and it was really the first time I struggled so bad. When I wasn’t playing in the games Mo was always there sitting next to me in the dugout and telling me an amazing story. I learned a ton from Mo and I would like to share my favorite Mo Weber story… It must have been about the sixth inning at Rebel Park and I wasn’t playing. Instead of sulking on the bench and thinking about how I missed home and why the heck I wasn’t in the game, I decided to make the most of my night and pick the brain of the “Legend of the Valley”. I asked him everything from the best players he had seen, the worst places he played at, every school he ever coached at….and there were a lot. We were having a great conversation and I got to be honest with you I nearly lost track that there was a ballgame going on until I heard that cracking sound of a hard foul ball and the alarming hissing of the ball coming towards us. Instinctually I knew I had to help this old man so I lunged myself between Mo and the incoming ball but the ball was moving too fast and hit just above us, and like a pinball it ricocheted off of the bat rack, the ceiling, and the back wall of the dugout, before it magically landed in the open hands and lap of a sitting Mo Weber. Everyone in the dugout was shaken up making sure nobody had been hit and without hesitation Mo turned to me and said in his slow drawn out tone, “These are the fastest hands in the Valley.”
I am thankful I was a Rebel and I am grateful to have met and learned from Mo Weber. He is a great man with a wealth of knowledge. Thank you for every thing Mo, the best coach I ever played for!” Kevin Brown 2010
“One memory I have of Mo is his great sense of humor. I’m sure it hasn’t changed. I was never sure if he was serious or not, but he pronounced the “Jose” in “San Jose State” as “Josie” like the English phonetic. It always made me laugh” Tim Adinolfi 1999
“Coach Mo Weber in my mind had the heart of a 21 year old baseball player who was upbeat and full of positive feedback. I remember my first encounter with him like yesterday. When I arrived to meet staff and coaches he was decked out in his full gear with those gleaming half-Sunday-slippers-half-cleats. The first thing he said was “Welcome Sandy”. I mean really this guy already knew my name, which made me feel he took time to know each players name before we even met. To say the least Mo has had an everlasting effect on my life knowing the importance of living like you are young and building relationships with others. This guy is the full package and has touched many lives along the way. Here is to you Mo. I know your still dancing away like it was yesterday in the dugout while we played extra innings against Luray at 11:30pm. Love you Mo!” Sandy Jacobs 2004
“I’ll always remember several of the “Mo-isms”. “I was a boxer once, now I’m a cocker spaniel” and “When I started to struggle they sent me down to the salt and pepper league for a little more seasoning.” Coach Corey Paluga 2009-2011
“I vividly remember Coach Weber talking to us about partying. He said that every night you go out and party, you waste two days of training to get back to where you were. That stuck with me over ten years later.” Matt Keller 2005
“The memory that stands out for me the most from Coach Weber was the time I walked out of the locker room wearing nothing but a jock strap. He looked at me and said “I got a peanut shell and a rubber band if that one breaks.” Of course I’ll also always remember Coach Weber for his kindness and positivity. He is always on the brightest side of the ball park.” Gerard Haran 2006
“The things I will always remember is that he was a very positive coach who was great to have around the field and was always able to put smiles on peoples’ faces.” Michael Mooney 2008
“Besides the basic awesomeness that Mo Weber epitomizes, here’s what he did for me: My first season with the Rebels was a good one, but I didn’t make the all-star team even though I was hitting .345 at the break. So my next season I was obviously counting on making it. Unfortunately, I was hitting something like .115 and didn’t have a chance. I was trying everything to get a hit, but I just kept digging myself deeper and deeper into a hole. Finally Coach Weber came up to me and said “Do you want to hit?” and by that point I felt like I was at rock bottom. I was willing to try anything. So I did! Coach Weber hung around as I took batting practice and he implemented some small changes (bat on my shoulder without moving until I made contact). At first I didn’t trust it because it felt so weird, but I remember him telling me to stick with it.
I remember what became the first of many hits; a line drive over third. I went on to lead the Rebels that season with a .302 batting average. Mo saw that I wanted to help the team, and it wasn’t my work ethic that was the problem. He saw that I didn’t trust myself, and he moved the accountability from myself to him and helped me gain confidence. It really was an awesome swing adjustment!” Chris Beck 2005-2006
“We were taking batting practice on the field one day and in between the pitches Dan Rollins was hitting grounders to the shortstops. Mo starts walking out towards center in the middle of BP (still don’t know why he did that) and was not even paying attention. It somehow came up that he was a ball magnet and always has been. It seemed almost immediately after someone had said that Dan went to hit a grounder to shortstop and accidentally hit a line drive. DRILLS Mo right in the arm. All he does is say “damnit” and kept walking. Like nothing even happened! Like someone bumped into him and it was as common as him filling up his gas tank. Couldn’t believe it. Then we just continued with batting practice and acted like it never happened.” Jay Lively 2009
“Mo Weber, I bring your story to the top of the Freedom Tower! I tip my cap to you! I am a carpenter now and attached is a photo I took before Freedom tower opened to the public” Mike Roth 2009
“Mo, 1st of all I think it was awesome that you wore spikes everyday. You are a genuine baseball person and you taught us the difference between being a “prospect” and a “suspect” and how to be a grinder and how to play hard and how to play the right way. Way back in 2001 I told you I was studying to be a teacher. You yourself were an educator and you gave me a great piece of advice once that I think about very often. You told me to teach my heart out and to love my students and care about them, but you also said something baffling to me that makes a lot of sense now. You told me “always keep your hands in your pockets when standing near a student”. I didn’t understand that advice then, but now as an educator of 12 years, I understand what you were saying and I always remember and abide by what has become known in my mind as “Mo’s rules”. Thank you! You are a great man!” Chris Turco 2001
“Favorite memory of Mo was when we were talking baseball at a post game dinner and I asked what he was most proud of in his baseball career. His response was that he enjoyed all of the wins, never the losses. Also “I hold one record that has never been beaten. I stole the most gloves in a single season.” I thought that was one of the funniest things I’ve ever heard around a baseball field.” Derek Peterson 2013
“It was the usual pregame batting practice and Mo was always on top of his game with jokes and stories from early last century. During BP, he was always trying to get me to hit home runs to my pull side. I preferred to work on my opposite field hitting. Mo was asking why I always hit the ball to right field (as a RH batter). “You got power, you don’t need to hit the ball to that side”, he said. I told him I still pull the balls in the game. He still didn’t like it. After batting practice and about an hour before first pitch, he ordered me out beyond the left field wall to conduct an unusual drill to “get the most out of my power”. I grab my bat and head past the wall with “The Legend” to the open field with trees and shrubbery in the distance. He says “take a swing as hard as you can and let go of the bat”. I did this for 15 minutes: just hurling my bat, fetching it, and hurling it again. Until finally, I launched the bat deep into shrubbery. After laughing for a minute, I told Mo, half-jokingly, that was my favorite game bat. Boy did he feel bad! He was on a mission to get that bat buried deep in the shrubs. He entered the tangled trees, constantly getting poked with thorn and tree branches. I was entertained to say the least. After a bit, I told Mo that the game starts in 20 minutes and not to worry about it. He told me to go get ready and he’ll bring the bat when he finds it. After the first half-inning, Mo finally comes back, my bat in hand. He had worked to get that bat for over 45 minutes!! I appreciated his perseverance, especially of a man at his age. Mo was complaining and itching and scratching his body the whole game (…kinda funny to watch). Sure enough, the next game day he shows up with poison ivy type rash on his arms and neck. This story still makes me laugh when I think of it, and it is one of the many memories I have from that summer in 2006.
Mo was one of my favorite coaches and people I’ve been around in baseball. He made it fun to show up to the park every day. ” Bryan Shaughnessy 2006
It is no doubt that Mo will be missed by us all, but I know that we will continue to treasure his memory! Feel free to share your own memories as we will continue to love hearing them!
■ Anna Lawrence.
Additional Photo Credits: Melissa Dodge, Anna Lawrence, Austin Gisriel
I think most of us can agree that our 2019 team was a special one, but even beyond their fun personalities and exceptional playing ability, our 2019 team had one other interesting attribute in common. Most adults who work in the world observe various documents, notes or reports that contain handwriting, and in many cases that handwriting isn’t always easy to read. If it is easy to read, it still might not be particularly neat or interesting to look at. At the beginning of the season, and after new players report to the Rebels, they fill out a questionnaire for the purposes of you Rebel fans getting to know them. You all saw me post these player profiles here on the blog all season long. What you didn’t see was the handwriting that filled them out! After each entry was handed to me this season, I continued to be surprised and impressed at the neatness of these boys penmanship! It’s truly a phenomenon.
Here’s an example of my own name printed on a report at work.. just for an example:
Can you read it? Because I barely can, and I wrote it! As someone who regularly sees notes jotted down by adults in the general population, this kind of sloppy lettering is the norm. This is what makes this grouping of handwriting so unique to me!
I wanted to provide you Rebel fans with some of these examples so that you can be as amused and impressed as I have been!
Here you can see Pitcher Kelyn Fox’s neat lettering. These small neat letters seem to be a common theme among the team.
Nic Nolan’s handwriting is not quite so neat, but his characters have kind of an artistic void that makes them interesting to look at. It’s also still very easy to read.
Blake Ebo’s lettering is a little bit larger and more bubbly. It has a youthful feel, but continues to be very neat and even.
I think Jeremiah McCollum and Davis O’Brien may be tied for neatest handwriting overall. They could have own fonts! I’d use them!
A few of our players had more elegant penmanship. These examples come from LT Pare, Jonah Seagears and Logan Morrison. They add a few flourishes to their words, and I appreciate the art of it!
These are just a few examples for you to enjoy. I can’t show you them all, but believe it or not, they were ALL very neat and easy to read, with the possible exception of Sam Prince who’s penmanship I’d describe as “normal”.
It will be interesting to me to see what kind of writers we get next year!
While I have been a casual record keeper and historian of modern era Rebels baseball, and I enjoy keeping tabs on what our alumni are doing, I am first and foremost a fan of these college athletes. I would not be involved in Rebels baseball if it weren’t for the magic on the field and the relationships built off the field. It is for this reason that it is always so exciting to me when my favorite players get the chance to continue their careers professionally. I hope other fans feel the same joy and excitement for these career updates that I feel!
This month we had a record breaking 7 Rebel alumni hear their names called in the MLB First Year Players Draft. Those players were Nate Pawelczyk (2016-17), Brandon Parker (2018), Jake Washer (2017), Reeves Martin (2018), Oraj Anu (2018), Keven Pimentel (2018), and Justin Crump (2016). Let me give you a quick update on where these players are at right now.
Nate Pawelczyk pitched for the Rebels in 2016-17, coming to us from Winthrop University. He was drafted in the 10th round of the MLB draft by the Chicago White Sox. He has since signed with the White Sox and is currently pitching for the Great Falls Voyagers, which is an Advanced Rookie League team in Great Falls, Montana. He has appeared in relief in 4 games so far for the Voyagers and has posted a 5.4 ERA.
Brandon Parker was an outfielder with the Rebels for the beginning of our 2018 season, coming from Mississippi Gulf Coast Junior College. He was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 10th round of the draft. He signed with the team on June 17th and is currently playing for the Danville Braves in Danville, VA. So far he’s accumulated 5 hits in 7 games for the Braves and holds a .192 batting average.
Reeves Martin pitched for our 2018 Rebels coming from the University of New Orleans. He was picked by the Seattle Mariners in the 21st round of the draft. He signed quickly and was sent to Everett, Washington to play for the Class A Short Season Everett Aquasox. He has so far pitched in 4 games and holds a 6.23 ERA.
Oraj Anu was a hard-hitting outfielder on our Championship 2018 team, and was drafted for the second time this year in the 16th round by the Boston Red Sox. Oraj has not signed with the Red Sox, and is currently playing for the Cotuit Kettleers in the Cape Cod League. Most reports indicate that Oraj will not sign with Boston, but will keep his commitment to playing for the University of Kentucky this fall. If this is how things turn out, we won’t be surprised to see Oraj drafted yet again in 2020 and/0r 2021.
Keven Pimentel was an All-Star pitcher for the Rebels in 2017. He played for the 2019 Championship-winning University of Tampa this year. He was selected by the Colorado Rockies in the 28th round of the draft. He has since signed with the team and is currently pitching with the Class A Short Season Boise Hawks in Boise, Id. He currently has a 5.4 ERA after appearing in just 2 games for the Hawks.
Jake Washer was a catcher for the 2017 Rebels coming from Eastern Carolina University. He was picked by the Chicago Cubs in the 29th round of the draft. He just signed the contract with the Cubs this past week and has not yet been assigned to a minor league team. We look forward to seeing where he ends up!
Justin Crump pitched for the Rebels in 2016, coming from UNC Wilmington. He was selected by the San Francicsco Giants in the 30th round of the draft. He signed his contract on June 16th and was assigned to the Arizona League Rookie Giants. This league has not yet begun play, but their season starts tomorrow on July 1st.
While it was truly a joy to see seven Rebel names called during the draft, there were a few names this Rebel fan was disappointed not to hear. Happily, in the time since the draft, we have had some of these players sign contracts with Independent League teams. The opportunity to play in the Independent Leagues is the opportunity to continue living the baseball dream, and maybe even regain the notice of MLB affiliated organizations, so we’re truly happy to have our alumni sign with these teams! The players we’ve noted so far in the transaction listings are Luke Johnson (2017), Nick Cottone (2017-2018), John Cable (2016), and Chase Sudduth (2017-18).
Luke Johnson was a catcher for the Rebels in 2017. He played for Hartford Community College, Lander University and ended his college career at Wilmington University in DE. This month he signed a contract with the Eastside Diamond Hoppers of the United Shore Professional Baseball League in Suburban Detroit, Michigan. Luke is having a good season so far batting .324 in 34 at bats with two home runs!
John Cable was a catcher/infielder for the 2016 Rebels. He played for the University of Georgia as well as the University of New Orleans. He recently signed a contract with the Lake Erie Crushers in the Frontier League. He has so far appeared in 9 games for the Crushers and holds a .229 batting average.
Nick Cottone is a pitcher from Elmira College who played for us in both 2017 and 2018. He recently signed a contract with the Plattsburg Thunderbolts in the Empire League, and has since been traded to the New Hampshire Wild in the same league. He has not yet appeared in a game, but we’re really excited to see his career continue!
Chase Sudduth is an infielder from the University of North Georgia who again played for us in both 2017 and 2018. On June 21st, Chase signed a professional contract with the Washington Wild Things of Washington, PA in the Frontier League. So far Chase has had just one hit for the Wild Things, but he has only appeared in three games, so we fully expect to see that change in the near future!