A minor league team owned by legendary baseball actor Kevin Costner is winning on the field, but they’ve become an absolute train wreck in the front office. The drama has created a “Field of Nightmares” for a horribly mismanaged ballclub.
The second-year Lake County Fielders played their first 32 games on the road, including two trips to Maui.
They were still in their first home series when Manager Tim Johnson walked out over a pay dispute, and many of the players, smarting for the same reason, showed their sympathy. The Fielders are said to have traded nine players although it is not easy tracking all of them and released 14 others. That’s virtually the entire team.
And now their play-by-play guy aired more dirty laundry, on the air! (listen to the whole thing after the jump. Once he gets going it’s great)
Lake County continued to lead the Western Division (25-16) and reported attendance has the Fielders averaging 2,182 for nine openings, which ranks fourth in the entire league. (Yes, I know that number looks very miniscule, but remember these our unaffiliated teams- a lot of these guys have no baseball future and are just putting off going to community college)
In one contest as the exodus was taking place, interim Manager Pete LaCock used pitchers at most positions and visiting Yuma, AZ skipper Jose Canseco countered with a similar lineup, including himself as the pitcher for the first six innings. The Scorpions prevailed, 8-3. New Manager Chris Arago had only 11 players in uniform for his first game, a 4-2 triumph over Chico, CA, although with veteran talent boss Nick Belmonte replenishing the roster the team web site had the roster back to 14 by Thursday
“We’re trying really hard to make it work”, said General Manager Mike Kardamis, an Independent Baseball veteran on the job for three weeks. “I’m taking it day by day.”
Again, this is a scathing indictment of the owner of this Zion based team. To quote The Matrix, “THIS IS ZION!!!!”Follow paulmbanks