When the Stars moved to Huntsville in 1984, home-town hero Don Mincher was the obvious choice to become the team's first General Manager. Through his work, Mincher established the Stars as a staple in the Tennessee Valley. Friday night, the Stars honored Mincher by retiring the number he wore as a Major Leaguer in a pre-game ceremony.
Stars' General Manager Buck Rogers invited Mincher, his wife Pat, and former GM Bryan Dingo on field to recognize Mincher and announce the retirement of his number.
"If you will notice on the banner," Rogers said as he directed the fans attention to banner in right field that features a picture of Mincher and the number five, "it says 'PLAYER,' 'GM,' 'OWNER,' and 'MENTOR.' Notice it does not say League President. Because he truly is a mentor. Shortly after I took this job in February, I learned that there is not a day that goes by that I can't pick up the phone and call Don and ask for his help. Mr. Mincher has meant so much to this team, this organization, and this city, and tonight we would like to thank him for everything that he has done by retiring the number five."
Rogers, with the assistance of Matt Price presented Pat Mincher with a dozen roses and a bottle of champagne to thank her for her support and contribution over the years. "Trust me, for every successful man in this business, there is a strong, supportive women, and the Stars would not be where we are today without Mrs. Mincher's support," Rogers said.
Mincher wore the number five as a Major Leaguer in the 1960s and '70s. In his 13 year career he compiled 200 career home runs, two All-Star selections, and a World Series ring in 1972 as a member of the Oakland A's.
He was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame (ASHOF) Saturday night in Birmingham.
Second baseman Michael Bell currently wears the number five, and he will be the last Star to ever do so. As Mincher took the microphone to thank the fans in attendance for their support, he jokingly addressed Bell.
"Michael, I wish you the best for this season, but I also hope you get called up to Nashville or Milwaukee tomorrow so I can have my number."
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.