Clinton, IA - The non-profit Friends of Riverview Stadium group raised over $1,700 during another successful Hot Stove Banquet last Saturday night. The event, held at Eagle Point Lodge in Clinton, included the formal introduction of 2011 Clinton LumberKings' field manager Eddie Menchaca, a silent auction and a catered dinner provided by Hy-Vee of Clinton.
Menchaca spoke to the eager fan base about his experience playing in the Seattle Mariners' minor league system and his rapid rise to the coaching ranks. He also weighed in on his successful season as the manager of the Pulaski Mariners in 2010 and gave fans insight into what they can expect from his LumberKings this year.
Other speakers included LumberKings' General Manager and 2010 Midwest League Executive of the Year Ted Tornow, Assistant General Manager Nate Kreinbrink, Director of Operations Mitch Butz, Friends of Riverview Vice President Judy Dennis and the Mayor of Clinton, Rodger Holm.
The most touching moment of the night came during Clinton Baseball Club President Paul Schnack's speech, when he awarded an inscribed front entrance brick and lifetime season ticket to retiring board chairman, Don Roode. Roode recently stepped down from the board after 17 years of service, including 12 as the chairman.
An autographed bat from legendary Chicago Cub and Hall-of-Famer Ryne Sandberg was the headline item of the auction, but signed photos from 2010 Midwest League All-Stars Nick Franklin and Erasmo Ramirez and a signed baseball from former Clinton Giant and 17-year Major League veteran Matt Williams were also big sellers. Autographed photos of 2010 LumberKings James Jones, Vinnie Catricala and Tom Wilhelmsen headlined the raffle prizes.
The 2011 season begins on Thursday, April 7 as the LumberKings host the Burlington Bees at Alliant Energy Field. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 PM. For season tickets, group outings, merchandise and more, call the LumberKings at 563-242-0727 or visit www.lumberkings.com.