Marion Bobcat now active with San Diego Padres. In some small fashion, Marion, Kentucky went to the big leagues
last Friday night. The ultimate beneficiary of the “call up” was
Travis Jankowski, who started in center field for the San Diego
Padres. Jankowski played for the Marion Bobcats in
2010 during the final year of the KIT league
before the Bobcats joined the newly formed OVL in
This MLB Story begins
with Gordon Guess and his beloved – yet now defunct – Marion Bobcats.
Guess, who owned and operated The Peoples Bank for many years, is a true blue baseball man. His passion for the game helped spawn a summer collegiate team in Marion for six years from 2008 to 2013. Jankowski was one of its finest stars, although for a very brief period.
Jankowski had just finished his freshman season at Stony Brook (NY) University when the Marion Bobcats got a tip about a young kid who was fast as lightning and played a pretty good center field.
“But they said he couldn’t hit very well,” Guess recalled with a chuckle early this week, recounting a conversation that Bobcats coach Steve Fowler had with one of Jankowski’s college skippers.
Of course, Jankowski proved that summation to be terribly wrong.
After hitting .262 as a college freshman,
Jankowski came of age at the plate while playing in Marion.
He led the KIT League with a stellar .484 average and stole 45 bases.
This wooden bat league allows big league scouts to see what batters can do without high performance sticks.
Additionally, no one in this league could throw him out, recalled observers of those days when the Bobcats played at Marion-Crittenden County Park’s field aptly named for Mr. Guess.
Guess recalls talking hitting with Jankowski during the drive to Marion after picking up the young ball player at the Nashville International Airport. Jankowski had flown in from his home in Pennsylvania to be part of the Bobcats’ third season. No one knew the impact he might have or the future that lie ahead for this tall, lanky outfielder.
“He’s certainly figured it out,” Guess said, pointing to Jankowski’s first few days in the big leagues, hitting over .500 and earning all sorts of praise from baseball writers and broadcasters. During a televised game
on Sunday against St. Louis, Cardinals’ broadcaster and former big league pitcher Rick Horton called Jankowski “lightning in a bottle.”
comments from OVL President. I would like to congratulate the Dubois County Bombers and their organization on winning the 2015 OVL Playoff Championship. All teams are to be commended on their dedicated play throughout the playoffs. Each round went the full allotted distance. Any of the teams could have won the Playoff Championship, but it ended with the regular season champion Dubois County Bombers battling it out with the regular season runner up Madisonville Miners for the title. The final two games were decided by a single run each night. If you recall, last year these two teams finished the season in 4th and 5th place respectfully.
It is now time to winterize the stadiums, put up the uniforms and equipment and begin looking forward to the 2016 season. My goal as president is to work with all the teams to grow our league both within and outside of it. Our future looks bright based on having received several inquiries during the season from communities that would like to explore the possibilities of becoming part of our league in 2016.
Again, congratulations to everyone associated with our 2015 season and your assistance in making this year the most successful, competitive and entertaining in our history. Good luck to all of our players and coaches as they pursue their dreams and goals. I hope to see several of them return in 2016.
Cubb R. Stokes, President
Ohio Valley Summer Collegiate Wooden Bat League
President's appreciation of league personnel.
Now that the regular season is complete and before the playoffs begin, I would like to thank and recognize the most important group of men that make our league successful. They are our statisticians. Without them and their dedication we would not be able to provide the fans the game summaries and stats in such a timely manner. They work long hours before, during and after each game to insure that all stats and box scores are correct and turned in to our head statistician and webmaster John Dunker. Those men are Brett Mills-Owensboro, Will Cox-Madisonville, Logan Sollman-Dubois County, David Snow-Hopkinsville and John Dunker-Fulton. Each night after the games are over, they send the scores to John to post and by early the next morning, John has received and posted all of the stats and summaries from the previous nights games. Also, through their coverage, at the end of the season we are able to recognize our individual award winners.
In addition to these dedicated members of the league, I would also like to acknowledge the other" behind the scene" support staff. They are the PA announcers, play by play announcers for the radio and Teamline outlets, the color commentators, the video operators, the umpires, the batboys and girls, the concession stand workers, merchandise workers, the ticket takers, the clean up crews and everyone else that plays a part in making our games possible. I am sure that I have left out someone and I apologize if I did, but one group that I won't leave out are the ones that make sure that the players have a safe field to play on, the Groundkeepers! We experienced the second wettest summer on record this year, but each team was still able to complete their 40 game schedule. The men with the rakes did a great job!
Thanks again to everyone and good luck in the playoffs!
Cubb R. Stokes, President
Ohio Valley Summer Wooden Bat Collegiate League
Ohio Valley League Player Award Titles.
The final games of the 2015 regular season
completed last night. Each year the OVL recognizes
the top players in ten areas of performance.
This year the OVL continues that tradition. The
are those who
qualified in the regular
season and are recognized
as the best in
the OVL for 2015. Based upon a 40
game schedule the players had to quality with a
minimum of playing time in order to quality for a
title. Batters required at least 112 plate
appearances (PA) and pitchers a minimum for 32
innings pitched (IP). Stolen Bases and Saves
are exempt from these qualifying factors. Again the
was tough with several players setting high
standards of performance. Congratulations
to those players chosen. Thank you to every player and team
for their contribution
to a great season of summer baseball. Good luck in
the Playoffs and all your future endeavors.
Runs Batted In
de la Trinidad
de la Trinidad
factors: batters is 112+ plate appearances
and pitchers with 32+ innings pitched.
Bases and Saves are exempt from qualifying
factors. (post-season games not included).
County Bombers clinch 2015 Regular Season Pennant.
After last night's
Fulton Railroaders' loss to the Owensboro Oilers,
the Dubois County Bombers have clinched the
regular season OVL title. The Bombers are now the
# 1 seed for the Post Season Playoffs. The first
of three rounds of the playoffs begin this
Thursday with a single game round one between the
4th place Hoppers and the 5th place Oilers in
Hopkinsville. The best of three game series for
round two begins on Friday; the winner of
Thursday's game will host the Bombers for game
one, and the # 2 seed will play at the # 3 seed's
home field. The Miners and Railroaders seeding for
round two will be decided after tonight's two OVL
games are complete; the Bombers at Miners and
Hoppers at Railroaders. See the OVL Schedule page
for Playoff dates and updates. A complete Post
Season Playoff bracket will be posted upon the
completion of the regular season games tonight.
President comments on 2015 Regular Season.
would like to congratulate the Dubois County Bombers and their ownership group on winning the 2015 OVL regular season Championship. They began the season after the unexpected death of their GM Joe Mundy during the off season. It took them a few games to get settled in, but once they did, they remained at the top of the standings for the majority of the season. Towards the end of the season they fought off determined Fulton and Madisonville teams, but on the next to the last game of the season, they clinched the pennant and home field advantage for the playoffs. This pennant race was the closest race in recent memory and kept the fans excited and pouring through the turnstiles to support their hometown teams.
I would also like to congratulate the other teams on a very successful season. As a whole, I think that this is best group of players that the league has ever put together, both athletically and of great character. We had very few ejections and that is a compliment to everyone involved in our teams to expect the best from themselves, their teammates and staffs. Each player and organization represented themselves, their communities, colleges and families with the utmost respects.
Lastly, I would like to thank all of the fans for their dedicated support of their team and the league. Whether it be support at the game as a fan, a host family, a sponsor, a family member, a friend or a dedicated listener on the radio or Teamline, without each of you, we would not exist. When someone contacts me in person or via social media and thanks us for providing their son a place to play ball in the summer and improve his skills, makes me proud to serve as the OVL President and part of the great game of baseball!
Good luck to all the teams, players and fans in the playoffs,
Cubb R. Stokes, President
Ohio Valley Summer Collegiate Baseball League
Season Game Summaries Archive