Capital District Baseball Hall of Fame is Here
In the past few years, Capital District football and basketball hall of fames have sprung up.
Now, it’s baseball’s turn.
On Nov. 6, the first class of the Capital District Baseball Hall of Fame will be enshrined at the Crown Plaza in Albany.
Rene LeRoux, the architect behind the Capital District Basketball Hall of Fame, has started up another Hall of Fame, which will honor local players who shined on the diamond.
Former professionals like Johnny Podres, Don Pepper, Dale Long and Glen Barker (below) and current pros Casper Wells, Tim Stauffer and Brendan Harris will all be among those who are honored.
In addition to those former pros, two members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame — Troy native Johnny Evers and Cohoes native George Davis — will also be enshrined.
The Hall of Fame will be housed at Joe Bruno Stadium in Troy, home of the Class-A Tri-City ValleyCats, an affiliate of the Houston Astros.
Stauffer (below), a graduate of Saratoga Catholic, enjoyed the most successful season of his big league career in 2011, with the San Diego Padres.
The 29-year-old finished 9-12 on the mound, but had an ERA of 3.73.
Stauffer also had more than twice as many strikeouts (128) as walks (53).
Wells (right) spent the majority of the year in the bigs, playing with both Detroit and Seattle.
The Schenectady High grad finished 51-for-215 (.237) and hit 11 home runs.
Harris spent much of the season at Baltimore’s Triple-A affiliate in Norfolk, finishing with a .225 average (116-516) and 10 home runs.
Harris had spent the previous three seasons with the Twins, before being part of a trade in December of last year.
Podres, a native of Queensbury, was chosen as the 1955 World Series MVP Award, as a member of the Brooklyn Dodgers. He was on the mound in Game 7, when the Dodgers defeated the Yankees, 2-0, to clinch Brooklyn’s only championship.
A lifetime achievement award has been named in Podres’ (left) honor and will be awarded to George Rogers, founder of the South Troy Dodgers amateur baseball program that has helped produced pros, such as Wells and Stauffer.
Just this past August, the South Troy Dodgers, who were coached by Rogers, competed in the Connie Mack World Series, in Farmington, N.M., for the fifth time in the organization’s history.
In addition to Rogers, two local college coaches will be honored — Siena’s Tony Rossi and the late Bob Bellizzi, who coached at The College of Saint Rose.
The 1954 Schenectady team, which won the Little League World Series, will be honored with the Team Legacy Award.
Tickets are priced at $75 and can be purchased by contacting LeRoux at 877-5170 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.