Alaska League teams take the field
June 7, 2000, Daily News-Miner
By RICHARD LARSON
The Alaska Goldpanners are still seven days away from their first game of 2000, but Alaska Baseball League action gets under way today.
The Mat-Su Miners will be the first of the six ABL teams to take the field when they face the Anchor Town Sports All Stars tonight at Hermon Brothers Field.
The Anchorage Glacier Pilots play Athletes in Action on Thursday at Mulcahy Park; the Kenai Peninsula Oilers play an exhibition game against the Kenai American Legion All-Stars on Friday; and the Anchorage Bucs play the Seattle Studs at Mulcahy Park on Friday.
The Panners begin their season on June 14 against the Fairbanks Adult Men's Baseball League Amateur Stars. The Midnight Sun game is June 21 against the Santa Barbara Foresters and the ABL season begins on June 23 against the Mat-Su Miners.
The Hawaii Island Movers return to the ABL after a one-year hiatus. A scheduling conflict between ABL games and the Island Movers schedule against teams from the Orient kept Hawaii out of league play last year. However, the Island Movers are back and play five games in four days against the Panners at Growden Memorial Park on July 7-10.
Kenai won the ABL title last year and the Anchorage Bucs finished second. The Goldpanners were third. The top two teams qualify for spots in the National Baseball Congress World Series at Wichita, Kan.
"I think Kenai is the team you have to shoot at," said Alaska Goldpanners General Manager Don Dennis. "(Field manager Gary) Adcock seems to have most of the pieces of the puzzle."
Adcock is in his second year with the Oilers.
Manager Dan Cowgill will be starting his third season with the Panners. Each of the remaining four field managers in the league will be experiencing their first year with their teams.
"A real killer in this league is a change of managers," Dennis said. "Continuity is really important, now more than ever. Having returning players and returning coaches is key."
The Goldpanners also expect to have at least five players return from last year's team after having only one returning player in 1999.
Catcher/third baseman Greg Sain, second baseman Brooks Conrad, shortstop Arik Van Zandt, outfielder Jonah Martin, and pitcher Sean Timmons are all expected to return to the Goldpanners lineup.
For the third straight season the ABL will be using wooden bats. The Baum Bat is the official bat of the ABL, but players have the option of using their own wooden bats. This year for the first time wooden bats will also be used during the NBC tournament.
2000 Goldpanners Schedule June 14--Fairbanks Adult Amateur Stars, 7 p.m. (Army Day)
June 15--Athletes in Action, 7 p.m.
June 16--Athletes in Action, 7 p.m.
June 17--Athletes in Action, 7 p.m.
June 19--Santa Barbara Foresters, 7 p.m.
June 20--Santa Barbara Foresters, 7 p.m.
June 21--Santa Barbara Foresters, 10:30 p.m.
June 22--Santa Barbara Foresters, 7 p.m.
June 23--Mat-Su Miners, 7 p.m.
June 24--Mat-Su Miners, 7 p.m.
June 25--Mat-Su Miners, 2 p.m.
June 26--Kenai Peninsula Oilers, 7 p.m.
June 27--Kenai Peninsula Oilers, 7 p.m.
June 29--at Anchorage Bucs
June 30--at Anchorage Bucs
July 1--at Mat-Su Miners
July 2--at Kenai Peninsula Oilers
July 3--at Kenai Peninsula Oilers
July 4--at Kenai Peninsula Oilers (2)
July 5--at Anchorage Glacier Pilots
July 6--at Anchorage Glacier Pilots
July 7--Hawaii Island Movers, 7 p.m. (Odom Night)
July 8--Hawaii Island Movers, 7 p.m.
July 9--Hawaii Island Movers, 6 p.m. (2)
July 10--Hawaii Island Movers, 7 p.m. (Bank Night)
July 11--Fairbanks American Legion
July 12--at Mat-Su Miners
July 13--at Mat-Su Miners
July 14--Anchorage Glacier Pilots
July 15--Anchorage Bucs
July 16--Anchorage Glacier Pilots (2)
July 18--Anchorage Bucs, 7 p.m.
July 19--Anchorage Bucs, 7 p.m.
July 20--Anchorage Bucs, 7 p.m.
July 21--Anchorage Bucs, 7 p.m.
July 22--Anchorage Bucs, 2 p.m. (Golden Days)
July 23--Bay Area Stars, 2 p.m. (2) (Golden Days)
July 24--Bay Area Stars, 7 p.m. (Kids day)
July 25--Bay Area Stars, 7 p.m.
July 26--Bay Area Stars, 6:30 p.m.
July 27-31--Anchorage Bucs Invitational
Aug. 3--NBC Tournament
Note: All homes games will be played at Growden Park.