A few months ago, I did a Q & A with the Executive Director of Baseball Operations for the United Shore Professional Baseball League. Today, the league issued a press release announces their three managers for the 2016 season.
UNITED SHORE PROFESSIONAL BASEBALL LEAGUE NAMES MANAGERSLeadership brings Vast Major, Minor League Experience to Inaugural Teams, SeasonROCHESTER, Mich. – Feb. 8, 2016—The United Shore Professional Baseball League (USPBL) today announced Managers for its three inaugural teams: The Utica Unicorns, Eastside Diamond Hoppers and Birmingham Bloomfield Beavers. The USPBL managers bring more than 80 years of combined professional baseball experience to the new league.Manager Greg GrallUtica UnicornsGreg Grall has been involved with Major League Baseball (MLB) and Minor League Baseball (MiLB) since 1993, bringing more than twenty years of experience as a player and coach. He has been an instrumental coach at every level along with consulting and coaching internationally for the MLB World Games from 2004 to 2006. Over the past ten years, Grall had worked primarily in AA & AAA for the Pittsburgh Pirates, Boston Red Sox, Baltimore Orioles and Cincinnati Reds. Throughout his career Grall has had the privilege of working with some of the biggest names in MLB, including: Cy Young Winner Jake Arrieta; All-Star Closer Mark Melancon; B.J. Ryan; Andrew Miller; Adam Dunn; and Corky Miller to name a few. Grall is a native of Chattanooga, TN.Manager Chris NewellBirmingham-Bloomfield BeaversChris Newell has served in professional baseball since 1997 as a player, manager and scout. After a successful college career at Northwest Missouri State University, Newell played professional baseball in 1997 and 1998, earning a Gold Glove as a second basemen for the Kalamazoo Kodiaks in the Frontier League. After retiring as a player, he began his scouting career with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, spanning from 1999 to 2005. In 2003, Newell made his professional managing debut with the Kalamazoo Kings of the Frontier League, making him the youngest manager in professional baseball that year. Since 2006, he has scouted for the New York Yankees. Through his private instruction, Newell has trained 44 players who have either been drafted professionally or signed professional contracts, including: MLB All-Star DJ LeMahieu; and 2015 Tampa Bay Rays Draftee Jacob Cronenworth. Newell is a native of Waterford, MI.Manager Paul NoceEastside Diamond HoppersPaul Noce has been actively involved in the game of baseball for over 33 years, including two stints in the Major Leagues with the Chicago Cubs (’87) and Cincinnati Reds (’90). In 1986, Noce was selected as a Topps All-Star shortstop for his play with the AA Pittsfield Cubs, a MiLB affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. A proven winner, he was a member of the AAA World Series-winning Indianapolis Indians (a Cleveland Indians minor affiliate) in 1988 and the 1990 World Series Cincinnati Reds. After a successful career as a player, he served as a minor league instructor and manager with the Pittsburgh Pirates organization before moving on to the collegiate ranks. In 1994, he took the reins as Head Coach at Hillsdale College in Adrian, Mich. Over the next 20 years, Noce would win nearly 350 games. In 2012, he was inducted into the Peninsula Sports Hall of Fame in San Mateo, Calif. Noce is a native of San Mateo, CA.Also named:Throwing / Pitching Coordinator Justin OrenduffJeff Orenduff is the founder of the Delivery Value System (DVS) and creator of the DVS Scoring System. DVS, which stands for Delivery Value System, is the first bio-mechanically based model that is statistically proven to predict the relative risk associated with any pitcher’s delivery. The model utilizes a proprietary scoring system based on six components of a pitcher’s delivery and establishes a validity with a Cox Proportional Hazard Statistical Analysis.In 2004, Orenduff was a first round draft pick of the Los Angeles Dodgers and, later, a member of the 2003 USA Collegiate National Team, pitching alongside MLB stars Jered Weaver and Justin Verlander. This followed a collegiate career as an All-American pitcher at both George Washington University and Virginia Commonwealth University.About United Shore Professional Baseball LeagueDuring the summer of 2015, General Sports and Entertainment announced the creation of the United Shore Professional Baseball League (USPBL), an independent professional baseball league in Metro Detroit. The league, headquartered in Rochester, Michigan, initially will be playing in a brand new state-of-the-art $12 million ballpark named Jimmy John’s Field, which is located in downtown Utica, Mich. First of its kind for Metro Detroit, USPBL will provide a fun and exciting family atmosphere while showcasing top baseball talent to fans of all ages. The inaugural season, which begins this Memorial Day 2016, will feature three teams—the Utica Unicorns, the Eastside Diamond Hoppers and the Birmingham Bloomfield Beavers. Additional teams and ballparks will be forthcoming each year.
Also, I know many players have been asking about tryouts. Here is the information we have so far.
The United Shore Professional Baseball League (USPBL) inaugural season tryout/showcase will be held May 16th – 19th. Players will be evaluated by all USPBL Managers and members of the USPBL baseball advisory committee. The USPBL has reserved an indoor & outdoor facility to assure all participants have an opportunity to showcase their skills and receive a thorough evaluation.
May 16th: Light workout consisting of batting practice and infield/outfield.
May 17th: Professional Player Evaluation drills.
May 18th: Players will be placed in game situations as well live games.
May 19th: Situational baseball and live games.
The cost per player to attend will be $200 dollars. Registration will open soon. A $50 non-refundable deposit is required with final payment due by May 15th, 2016 in order for players to participate.
For the 2016 inaugural season, players must be at least 18 years old and have been born on or after January 1, 1990 to be eligible to play in the USPBL. No player or player may have attained twenty six (26) years of age prior to January 2016. Please note that players with college eligibility remaining should check with their school compliance office before registering.
At the end of the showcase, players will be signed into the USPBL. A draft will be held in the following days and teams / rosters will be announced May 23rd.
Spring training will commence the week of May 23rd.
The United Shore Professional Baseball League will host its inaugural season at Jimmy John’s Field in Utica, Michigan. Our season will start May 30th and concluded September 11th, 2016. Players will have access to a state of the art facility, customized strength & conditioning programs and our USPBL Hitting and Throwing Program during the course of the season. Our 2016 All-Star Game will be held September 9th followed by Championship Weekend.
For more information on the United Shore Professional Baseball League, you can visit their official website HERE.