The story behind the story of North Pole’s name

I got an e-mail from Neil Davis the other day. The son of homesteader Bon Davis, Neil is well-known in his own right, but his father is one of the reasons North Pole is North Pole.

He said that while it is true that investors Dahl and Gaske originated the idea of the name–thinking it would draw toy manufacturers to the area–and it is true that in 1952 Bon Davis petitioned the U.S. District Court to change the name from “Davis” to North Pole, there is more to the story. Continue reading

Replacing ping! with crack! for Alaskan summer

Linda Douglass
Alaska e-Post online

The boys of summer are back, and Alaska baseball fans’ winter-long dreams have finally become reality.

The sharp crack of the wooden bat connecting with the leather ball, the muffled slap of the ball hitting the pocket of the glove, the fans cheering their team and booing the umpires, homeruns, spectacular catches, well-executed double plays, stolen bases and occasionally even a triple play – all are signs that it’s baseball season once again. Continue reading

Tim Gloyd (87) Named Alaska Goldpanners 2007 Skipper

“”He has the unique fit to work summer baseball” Alaska League style,” Goldpanners GM Don Dennis said in an e-mail. “The Alaska League is no show league like the Cape Cod has become. It is a down and dirty competition among the cities, and the players get infected with that.” “I am extremely excited that Tim was available to take the position. I felt he was the right guy from the moment the position opened.”

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Chad Kretuer (83-84) Settles in as USC Head Coach

By Dave Albee

As if replacing his successful father-in-law as head baseball coach at USC isn’t motivation enough, Chad Kreuter has found an even greater source of inspiration right next door.

The former major-league catcher and Marin native is embracing the chance to coach and work in the Los Angeles Coliseum-sized shadow of USC football coach and fellow Redwood High graduate Pete Carroll. Kreuter has one goal in mind, and it’s essentially the same one Carroll had when he arrived on campus. Continue reading

Sports Illustrated: The Alaska Baseball League – A major league pipeline

“A police officer pulled in there saying, `I know you guys are from somewhere where it’s nighttime, but you need to get to bed,”’ Luis Gonzalez said.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) -There are so few fans in Mulcahy Stadium this summer evening that a heckler’s game-long monologue carries clear to the pitcher’s mound. It’s the eighth inning. The hometown Anchorage Bucs are tied with the Peninsula Oilers, 2-2.

“Hit it right at him, see how his reflexes are!” he urges the batter.

The man’s voice cuts easily through the quiet chatter of about 300 people lounging in the bleachers at this Alaska Baseball League game, between teams made up of college players from North Carolina to Hawaii to Taiwan. The park holds 4,500 people, but the average turnout for a game is several hundred. Continue reading

2006: Chad Kreuter moves to USC

By Brian VanderBeek

Chad Kreuter stepped down Friday as the Nuts’ manager and will take his father-in-law’s spot at USC.

When Chad Kreuter took over as manager of the Modesto Nuts in December, he spoke of having two career goals. He said he either wanted to manage in the big leagues or be the head coach of a top-notch college program.

The Colorado Rockies had Kreuter on a path that eventually could have given him a shot at the major-league half of that dream. But the University of Southern California had a fast-track plan, and it took only a few hours to convince Kreuter which path to take. Continue reading

2006: Andy Stankiewicz joins ASU coaching staff

 Andy Stankiewicz has been named an assistant coach for Arizona State University baseball, Head Coach Pat Murphy announced today. Stankiewicz joins Turtle Thomas, who was also named to the ASU coaching staff today, as the newest members of the baseball staff.Stankiewicz spent 2005 as the manager of the Staten Island Yankees, the New York Yankees Class A affiliate. Stankiewicz led Staten Island to the 2005 NY-Penn League championship. He managed in Staten Island for two seasons before becoming the Yankees Southwest Scout this past off-season. Stankiewicz also spent two seasons as a defensive coordinator and roaming infield instructor for the Yankees minor league system, in addition to one season as the hitting instructor for the Rookie League Gulf Coast Yankees. Continue reading

2006: North Pole Nicks’ Steve Finley (86) joins 300-300 club

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -Joe DiMaggio never gained admission to this exclusive club. Nor did Mickey Mantle, Hank Aaron, Stan Musial and Babe Ruth.

Until this month, only four players in major league history had. Then, within days of each other, two well-traveled friends – Kansas City’s Reggie Sanders and San Francisco’s Steve Finley – quietly expanded the group to six members. The admissions policy is demanding: 300 career homers and 300 stolen bases. Continue reading

2006: Luis Gonzales Not Ready to Retire

PHOENIX (AP) – Luis Gonzalez wants to finish his career with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

But the 38-year-old outfielder’s future is uncertain as enters the final year of his three-year, $30 million contract. The Diamondbacks hold a contract option for 2007, and there’s already speculation that he’s not in the team’s plans beyond this summer. Continue reading