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Red River Adult Baseball League, 45+ Division
'Re-tooled Scorpions Post Successful Season, Make it
Submitted by Charlie Cavell, Scorpions manager
It was a big transitional year for the Shreveport
Scorpions. At the beginning of the year, I spoke with Red River Adult Baseball
League (LA) president David Pratt. He was deeply concerned about the solvency of
45+ division. The Shreveport Scorpions, which had won the division nearly every
years since its inception, was expected to disband. Longtime manager Max Hahnel decided to retire as did a number of the players. No one was volunteering to
take over the team. At the same time there were rumors that the Elysian Fields
Hawks were disbanding as well. This was disturbing news to me. I saw my days of
playing baseball going away.
I had been playing for years with the Shreveport
Tigers, but upon hearing this news from Pratt I told him that for the
betterment of the division and the RRABL I’d be willing to take over as the
manager of the Scorpions. It was not an easy decision because I’m a fiercely
loyal person and because I knew I’d receive some pushback from the Tigers’ manager and some players. Also, I didn’t know if any of the "old guard”
returning Scorpions would want or play for me as their manager. Despite my
trepidation, I volunteered to take over the team.
I contacted all the returning players seeking their
approval and much to my delight all were okay with me being their new manager.
I then had to seek out and find new players, which I was fortunate to find a
solid group of players to join the Scorpions.
With the cast of veterans and new players it took the
team a while to jell. It also took me a short time to be comfortable in my new
role as player/manager. We also were hampered a bit with injuries to some of
our key players. As the season progressed, so did the Scorpions. The more we
played the better we became. Even though we didn’t finish where we had hoped in
the division, we made the playoffs and were fortunate enough to defeat Elysian
Fields in the first round.
As a player, all you can ask for is a chance to play
for a championship. Despite our early struggles, the Scorpions were back in the
championship game. The Ruston Dawgs were arranged for the championship game to
be played at Louisiana Tech University’s J.C. Love Field at Pat Patterson Park.
A couple of years ago the park had a beautiful new artificial grass surface
installed. Playing at this beautiful facility to decide the championship of theRRABL 45+ Division made the whole environment special.
Left-hander Bobby Malmay started on the mound for the Scorpions. This is the same man whose future was uncertain, not just regarding baseball,
but life. A week or so before the season started Malmay had a pace maker
installed. Originally, he was just going to be my assistant manager. However, a
month or so into the season he received clearance from his physicians that he
could start pitching again. Malmay kept us in the game until I had to lift him
in the fifth.
Despite being down three runs heading into the
eighth, we managed to tie the game and ultimately take the lead in the top of
the ninth. Ruston’s Joe Lockhart, who’s the head baseball coach at Quitman High
School, came on in relief of Darrien Dukes in the ninth, and kept it at a
one-run advantage for Shreveport. In the bottom of the ninth, Ruston had tied the
game 8-8 and had runners on second and third. We intentionally walked Scott
Heirs, who had homered and doubled, to set up a force at any base. Lockhart
laced a single down the left-field line giving the Ruston Dawgs a 9-8 walk-off
win and the championship. Lockhart was voted the MVP as he pulled off the
incredible feat of delivering the game-winning hit and RBI as well being the
Despite the heart-breaking loss it was a good year
for the Shreveport Scorpions. We hope to come back and reclaim the title in