an open letter from OVL president cubb stokes

July 31, 2017

From the President’s Desk

What a great season we have had in 2017!  This year we had a record high eight teams in the league and for the first time in our history, we had divisional play: four teams in the East and four teams in the West.  This format created our first divisional playoff schedule and what a playoff we had.  Both #1 seeds advanced to the Championship round with the Dubois Co. Bombers defeating the Hopkinsville Hoppers.  Both teams lead their respective divisions from opening night throughout the entire season.  In all we had seventeen playoff games.

We had our second annual All Star game in Huntingburg, Indiana, on July 9th with the East All Stars defeating the West All Stars on a walk off sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth.  It couldn’t have ended any other way!  All the players and coaches seemed to have a great time and enjoyed playing with players that they had played against all season.  I want to give a big thank you to the host Dubois County Bombers and organization for putting on a great venue for all to enjoy.

I want to thank all of the workers behind the scene, the scorekeepers, PA announcers, radio announcers, concession stand workers, merchandise table workers, grounds crew, ticket takers, ushers/Peaches, video personnel, bat boys/girls, statisticians, host families and all others that make it possible to provide quality baseball to our local region and to the nation via the internet.  I can’t leave out our Webmaster, Zach Bulliet who stayed up late every night to post all of the games and box scores, maintained the leagues stats and also designed and built our new webpage.

Thanks to all of the managers and coaches who spent their summer helping to develop our players into better players and to help them understand the importance of why they were playing summer ball.

I want to thank all of the umpires.  They did a tremendous job this year in making each game go smoothly and without any serious incidents.  I look forward to working closer with this group of professionals in the years to come so that our league will be recognized as one of the premier summer leagues in the nation.

A big thanks goes out to all of the fans, sponsors and advertisers.  Without each of you, we would not be able to have an Ohio Valley League!  Whether your team was winning or losing, you were always there to give your full support.  Also, I want to thank the sponsors that helped make the All Star game a success, BSN Sports of Martin, TN., Russell Athletic Wear, Diamond Baseball Co., Old Hickory Bat and The Game cap company.

How could I close without thanking all of the coaches across the nation that sent us their players for us to assist in developing them into better players and young men.  Also, thank you to mom, dad and family members!  For some, it is the first time that their son/relative has been away from them in the summer and they are sending them hundreds of miles away to an unfamiliar town to play baseball.  It also gave them a new place to vacation and get some fine Southern Hospitality!

Finally, I would like to thank our newest team in the league this year, the Henderson Flash.  They were a great addition to our league and brought in a new group of fans and exposure to the nation for our league.  I know that they are already planning for a great 2018 season.  Their owner and team did a fantastic job in their first season.

I want to leave you with one last comment.  Please remember that baseball is just a game and we owe it to all of you and the players to provide the best possible environment to participate in and to build lasting memories for a life time.

Respectfully yours for better baseball,

Cubb R. Stokes, President

Ohio Valley Summer Wooden Bat League