Archive for the ‘ Memphis ’ Category



Hope you all have had a long and restful offseason. The officers have had some time to discuss the 2020 season and wanted to get out some important information with spring training right around the corner.

In the next couple of days, will be contacting all current member players confirming that you will be playing in the 2020 season. We will be have our current member draft on Friday, February 28th. This is before spring training starts. We want to go ahead and get players placed so that coaches can start to prepare for the 2020 season.

Spring Training practice officially starts on Sunday, March 1st at 9am at Tobey Park. everyone will practice together. The remaining practice/scrimmages will be more team based if possible. We will try to have two Spring Training games after the Rookie Draft.

On Sunday, March 22, we will be holding a Rookie Open Tryout for news players to be evaluated by coaches and officers with a Rookie Draft immediately following the tryout. Let Rookies that you know want to play that they must participate and pay a $50 NONREFUNDABLE Tryout Fee if they want to join the league. This $50 will go towards their $175 dues on the Mandatory Due Date.


Contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

-HDL Board

40 Days and Counting – Tobey Update

[Field Update Report at bottom of Previous post]

News and updates from the Hernando DeSoto Men’s Baseball upcoming season has been quiet.  But that does not mean nothing has been going on.   Since October the activity at Tobey Legion Baseball field has been feverish.

Last fall the HDL officers committed to making major changes at Tobey, especially the infield playing conditions.  Here was the original “plan”:

  1. Add new high quality Bermuda grass sod to each base path – Home to First and Home to Third.

  2. Add new infield quality clay dirt material to existing infielder position dirt surface. ( First to Third)

  3. New dirt will be added to eliminate any major drop-off between existing grass infield and dirt playing surface.

      Note: Area at First Base is similar to progress at 3rd Base.

Additional needed improvements are on the priority list but their priority has been downgraded:

  • Replace batting cage net;
  • Repair cage frame posts to make them stronger,
  • Repair dugout roof system metal roofing,
  • Add fertilizer to Tobey field grass,
  • Remove excess food condiments and old equipment from storage box,
  • Renovate ground erosion in front of first base dugout,
  • Paint dugouts.

So what is the status of all these grand plans? 

With any project of this magnitude, progress depends on manpower and resource materials.  On Sunday November 10th a crew of 7 (officers and volunteers) came out and installed 2 pallets of sod that had been delivered.

Since the base path areas had been prepared in October, prior to the sod laying, the sod was installed with great success. After the Sod was installed the new sod was treated with winter Rye seeds to help it blend-in with the existing infield sod.

I am happy to report that this project goal is “Done”.

For the past 69 days, I have been working on moving baseball field dirt that we already had on-site.  I am referring to the pile of dirt that was was dumped next to the double gate outside the batting cage area.  This dirt was purchased in September, 2016 with the intention of using on the field but only a few wheel barrel loads was ever applied, mostly for repairs during field prep after rain damage. The amount of dirt that we have is less than 1/2 of a truck load.

After the sod was installed in November, the HDL officers had planned to have one, or two, full truck loads of dirt delivered to the field. However, fall rainy weather has continued to occur on a weekly basis.  The “ideal” scenario for dirt delivery is to have the dump trucks deposit the dirt directly on the infield when they arrive.

However, when the baseball field is “soft”, that delivery alternative would cause excessive damage to the field and has been determined to be unacceptable.

As the days have passed, since end of November, the rains continue to hinder our “preferred” option for dirt delivery.  In the meantime I have continued to manually move small yard wagon loads of our existing dirt to fill-in three primary areas (First Base, Third Base, Home Plate) to demonstrate how the goal of adding dirt to the infield will transfer Tobey into a playing surface that is on-par with many elite baseball fields in the Memphis area.

All we need is:

One full truck load of dirt, a bunch of volunteers with shovels, tampers and wheel barrels to make this happen. Oh, and of course, favorable dry field conditions for at least one complete weekend.  (If a Tractor with a front-end loader or a Bobcat was available, that would reduce the manual labor required.)

Resource funds are not an obstacle. Our challenge is “weather” and “volunteers” who will be available when conditions are favorable.

We have one other obstacle – TIME and 2020 SEASON START.  With our tentative start date for HDL practice proposed for March 8th, that date might not happen, or if it does, we run the risk of the field being in a state of disrepair making use of field as a safety risk.

I am posting this report to let everyone know that we have a problem and “YOU” may be needed to solve the problem.

If you have suggestions or ideas to help us accomplish this project before March, please share with us.

Larry Rutledge


Progress as of Tuesday January 28, 2020


Since posting the original article on Sunday, January 19th, the following work has been accomplished:

  • last of the infield dirt that was available at Tobey was installed in Home Plate circle.

     Home Plate Changes

  • Dirt supplier is being contacted to coordinate possible delivery date. To Be decided.

  • We are exploring feasibility of hiring some independent workers to handle the project to install the new infield dirt when it is delivered.  We can’t promise this will happen but even if it does, we still may need HDL volunteers to help dress up the installation.

           Need more dirt.

  • In the meantime, existing infield area behind bases, is being de-grassed.  Since the field was treated with Winter Rye grass, the dirt infield has become overgrown with rye grass and a few weeds.  This are will be weed-eat and sprayed with Round-up grass killer.

  • First and third base foul lines are being weed-eat.

Players asked to check back frequently as this project moves forward.

2019 HDL Banquet Recap

The 2019 HDL Player Awards and Hall of Fame Banquet was held Saturday night, November 23rd, at the Central BBQ Party Room.

Approximately 50 players, players spouses or partners, and invited guests took advantage of free BBQ meal and free drinks.  The program was slow getting started as many attendees were late arriving, around 7:00 PM, just in time to get into the Buffet line.  The estimated 100 attendees never materialized, for a variety of reasons.  Based on our initial estimates of people who indicated they would be attending, the HDL ordered excess food.  (In the future we will be more conservative with our food commitment budget estimates)

This was the first time the HDL has scheduled the annual banquet downtown at Central BBQ.  With the low attendance, there was plenty of room for those who attended. The Central BBQ Staff did an outstanding job of attending to our group’s event.

While the Audio-Visual accommodations were less than ideal, we were able to work with what was available.  The main deficiency was a proper sound connection to the overhead projector.  This prevented the prepared Slideshow sound track from being audible.  Larry Rutledge played a couple of prior year slideshow videos, as well as a new video that recapped the 2019 Season.

In an attempt to add some music to the slideshow finale, Rutledge played John Foggerty’s song, “Centerfield”, over a Tailgate Sound Box that helped achieve an adequate replication.  In the end, it all worked out thanks to the patience and understanding of the audience.


HDL 40th Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

Two candidates were approved by the Hall of Fame Committee for this year’s 40th induction ceremony.

The first Inductee was Outfielder Johnny Houghton who played in the HDL from about 2002 to 2016.  Johnny’s career batting average of .334 and almost 1000 Plate Appearances, as well as his infatuation with the HDL Baseball format, were valid reasons to justify his induction into the Hall of Fame.  Johnny was deeply appreciative of the honor of joining the HDL Hall of Fame.

The second candidate to be inducted was Team Manager and HDL Sponsor/Player, Don Hinkle. Don started his career in the HDL about the same time as Johnny Houghton.  As a player, Don compiled almost 700 Plate Appearances with a career batting average of .231. During the last 10-12 years of his career he has set an example by offering to manage any HDL team that needed him.  This unselfish service to the HDL is not reflected in his Stats because he actually participated as a Manager for an additional 200 games where he made sure his roster of players were treated fairly.


2019 HDL Player Awards

Bo McMinn, Jake Hatchett and Travis Hill conducted the introduction and presentation of trophies to 2019 players who were selected or earned a variety of award categories.

Trophies were presented to the following: 


Gold Glove Catcher:  Carlos Bello

Gold Glove First Base:  Shane Petty  

Gold Glove Second Base:  Carlos Gotera

Gold Glove Third Base:  Brandon Poyner 

Gold Glove Shortstop:  Freddie Colmenares 

Gold Glove Outfield:  Cody Dunn 

Gold Glove Outfield:  Jason Nilsen 

Gold Glove Outfield:  Carlos Canelo 

Gold Glove Outfield:  Oscar Zamudio 

Gold Glove Utility:  Alex Vivas 


Rookie of Year:  Tyler Dunn 


Charlie Hustle Award:  David Calhoun  (No photo)

Special Hustle Award:  Calvin Moore 


Cardinals MVP: Jake Hatchett

Royals MVP: Tyler Dunn

Yankees MVP: Jodie Wolfe 

Mets MVP: Wes Hill 


Best Pitcher:  Jodie Wolfe 

League MVP & Batting Champ: 


Sponsor Awards (Gold):  Prudential Ins. (Don Hinkle) 

Sponsor Awards (Gold):  MBAA (Andy Cook)

Sponsor Awards (Silver):  JH Auto (Jake Hatchett)

Sponsor Awards (Bronze):  Thompson Trucks/Equipment (Robert Miller) 




Final Remarks

Special recognition went to Beth Hatchett for creating the Baseball theme table decorations that were donated.  They really added to the purpose of the evening.

Also, the HDL Officers were pleasantly surprised when 2014 Hall of Fame Inductee, Jodie Wolfe, attended the 2019 Banquet for his first time “ever” to attend the HDL banquet.

All players were reminded to check the HDL Blog for off-season updates and announcements.  There are some  significant changes in progress at Tobey park that will make Tobey Baseball experience much different in 2020.  When extra help is needed, the Blog and Facebook will solicit your assistance.

The Banquet was concluded and, hopefully, everyone made it home safely.




2019 HDL Awards Banquet and Hall of Fame Induction



6:00 PM – 7:00 PM      –  Social Hour

7:00 PM – 7:45 PM      –  Dinner – Buffet Style

8:00 PM   –    Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

8:30 PM    –    2019 HDL Season Award Presentations

We will be using Central BBQ on Butler for this year’s banquet and awards ceremony. It will on Saturday, November 23rd from 6pm – 9:30pm. This will be a buffet style event and they will have a bar for you to buy drinks. The Buffet will cost $13 for non HDL members. We will be collecting money immediately so that we have a head count on how much food we need to order. You can pay three different ways: Cash, Check or PayPal on this page. For Multiple tickets needed, PayPal $13 x the number of people you are bringing to

2019 Banquet Ticket


Two 2019 Banquet Tickets



HDL Royals Holds Off HDL Cardinals For Victory

Cont’d from rain delay 7/14 – 9AM – 8.11.19 – Royals 9 – Cardinals 8

Despite seeing its seven-run lead whittled down by the end, the HDL Royals still held off the HDL Cardinals for a 9-8 victory on Sunday. HDL Cardinals scored seven runs in the failed comeback on a double by Cesar Cabrera in the fifth, a single by Brandon Poyner in the fifth, a double by Calvin Moore, Sr. in the fifth, a groundout by Tim Wallenstrom in the fifth, a double by Carlos Cabrera in the fifth, and a single by Cabrera in the sixth.

HDL Cardinals scored six runs in the fifth inning, but HDL Royals still managed to pull out the victory. HDL Cardinals offense in the inning was led by CabreraPoyner,Moore, Sr.Wallenstrom, and Cabrera, all sending runners across the plate with RBIs in the inning.

HDL Cardinals opened up scoring in the first inning. HDL Cardinals scored one run when Jake Hatchett doubled.

HDL Royals pulled away for good with seven runs in the third inning. In the third an error scored one run for HDL Royals 2019, Judson Belote drew a walk, scoring one run, Chris Pegues singled on the first pitch of the at bat, scoring two runs, Carlos Gotera singled on the first pitch of the at bat, scoring one run, an error scored one run for HDL Royals.

Cody Dunn got the win for the HDL Royals. He surrendered one run on two hits over three innings, striking out five. Emmanuel Avila and Alex Vivas entered the game out of the bullpen and helped to close out the game in relief.

Hatchett took the loss for HDL Cardinals. He lasted four innings, allowing six hits and eight runs while striking out three.

HDL Royals tallied eight hits on the day. Gotera and Tyler Dunn all had multiple hits for HDL RoyalsDunn and Gotera each collected two hits to lead HDL RoyalsHDL Royals didn’t commit a single error in the field. Vivas had the most chances in the field with one.

HDL Cardinals saw the ball well today, racking up 12 hits in the game. HatchettSteve Mitchell, and Cabrera all collected multiple hits for HDL CardinalsHatchett went 3-for-4 at the plate to lead HDL Cardinals in hits.

HDL Royals Falls To HDL Cardinals After Fifth Inning Score

Week 14 – 8.11.19 – 10AM – Cardinals 11 – Royals 5

Sunday’s game against the HDL Cardinals was a heartbreaker for the HDL Royals, as they lost the lead late in an 11-5 defeat. The game was tied at five with the HDL Cardinals batting in the top of the fifth when Calvin Moore, Sr. singled on the first pitch of the at bat, scoring one run.

The HDL Royals struggled to put runs on the board and had a tough time defensively containing HDL Cardinals, giving up 11 runs.

The HDL Royals got things moving in the first inning, when Carlos Gotera singled, scoring two runs.

Brandon Poyner took the win for the HDL Cardinals. He lasted five innings, allowing eight hits and five runs while striking out one. Jake Hatchett threw one inning in relief out of the bullpen.

Nick Harris took the loss for the HDL Royals. He lasted five innings, allowing ten hits and 11 runs while striking out seven.

Harris led the HDL Royals with two hits in three at bats.

The HDL Cardinals tallied 11 hits on the day. HatchettPoyner, and Jason Nilsen each managed multiple hits.

WEEK 13 Recap

The Royals Hold Onto Victory As The Mets Almost Erases 5-Run Deficit

The Royals built a five-run lead in the second inning and then held off The Mets charge for a 7-5 victory on Friday, August 2nd. The Mets scored two runs on a double in the fourth inning.

The Royals fired up the offense in the first inning, when Nick Harris doubled, scoring one run.

Johel Fumero was the winning pitcher for the Royals. He went three innings, allowing five runs on four hits and striking out three. Alex Vivas threw three innings in relief out of the bullpen. Vivas recorded the last nine outs to earn the save for the Royals.

Travis Hill took the loss for the Mets. He surrendered seven runs on 12 hits over six innings, striking out three.

The Royals had 12 hits in the game. Ramon MoretaChris PeguesRamon Urdaneta, and Carlos Varela all managed multiple hits for the RoyalsVarelaUrdanetaPegues, and Moreta each managed two hits to lead the Royals.

The Mets tallied seven hits on the day. Kevin High and Orville Nevels all had multiple hits for the Mets. The Mets didn’t commit a single error in the field. Travis Hill had the most chances in the field with one.


SUNDAY, August 4, 2019 Surprise:  Cardinals 7 – Yankees 6



The game was a battle between 2 pitchers who matched each other pitch for pitch.

Jake Hatchett went 8 innings allowing 6 runs, (5 ER) 6 hits, 8 K’s, and 9 walks.  Fernando Edio equaled Jake with 8 innings pitched allowing 7 runs (6 ER), 8 hits, 8 K’s and 8 walks.

The game winning hit came in the bottom of the 8th with bases loaded and 1 out off the bat of Rene B.

Other players having productive at bats were Jose Navarro (2/2), Juan Castillo 2 RBI’s for the Yankees. Cardinal hitters who stood out were Kevin Latham (2/4), Freddy Henriquez (2/2)

The Cardinals had been struggling during the first half of the season and desperately needed something positive. They had lost too many games in the late innings when victory was so close.  Maybe they can build on this accomplishment to turn around a frustrating season. (Same could be said for the St. Louis Cardinals)


Cardinals Fall Short To Mets, 8-4

Sunday – 7.28.19 – 9AM – Mets 8 – Cardinals 4

After the Mets scored two runs in the top of the sixth, the Cardinals answered with two of their own. Mets scored when Jason Mayrena singled on the first pitch of the at bat, scoring one run and an error scored one run for HDL Mets 2019. Cardinals then answered when Cesar Cabrera doubled, scoring two runs.

The Mets took the lead for good with two runs in the fourth inning. In the fourth Kevin High tripled, scoring one run and Barry Cummins singled on, scoring one run.

Wes Hill was the winning pitcher for the Mets. He allowed three hits and two runs over four innings, striking out four. John Hardin and Travis Hill entered the game out of the bullpen and helped to close out the game in relief.

Ben Eldred took the loss for the Cardinals. He went five innings, allowing five runs on 12 hits, striking out six and walking one.

Cabrera led Cardinals with two hits in three at bats.

The Mets collected 15 hits. Cory MorganMayrenaHillJose SanchezHigh, and Hardin all managed multiple hits. Morgan went 3-for-4 at the plate to lead in hits.

Yankees Can’t Catch Up To Royals

Sunday – 7.28.19 – 11:30AM – Royals 13 – Yankees 3

The Yankees fell behind early and couldn’t come back in a 13-3 loss to the Royals on Sunday. The Royals scored on a single by Alex Vivas and a single by Ramon Urdaneta in the second inning.

The Yankees struggled to contain the high-powered offense of the Royals, giving up 13 runs.

The Royals pulled away for good with two runs in the second inning. In the second Vivas singled, scoring one run and Urdaneta singled scoring another run.

The Royals scored five runs in the eighth inning which was led by VivasRamon MoretaUrdanetaJuan Palima, and Cody Dunn, who all drove in runs.

Vivas earned the win in which he allowed six hits and two runs over four innings. Nick Harris threw four innings in relief out of the bullpen.

Juan Castillio took the loss which he went six innings, allowing eight runs on 14 hits, striking out two and walking zero.

The Yankees tallied eight hits in the game. Carlos Bello and Castillio each managed multiple hits and Castillio and Bello each collected two hits to lead the Yankees.

The Royals racked up 20 hits on the day. VivasUrdanetaCarlos GoteraHarrisMoretaKurt Atkinson, and Dunn all managed multiple hits.

“Powered by Narrative Science and GameChanger Media. Copyright 2019. All rights reserved.” Any reuse or republication of this story must include the preceding attribution.

Using TeamSnap for the 2019 Season – Please Read

We will be using TeamSnap as our main source for communication and info this season. It is a tool meant to make life easier for everyone. I know that it is new to most, but after a little usage and playing around with the app, you will see how it is a convenient tool for coaches and players alike. This app will help coaches and officers get info out without having to track everyone down individually or create a team text on there phone everytime we need to get info out. Remember, these coaches and officers are spending their free time away from families and work to get you the information you need for every Sunday. Please download the app and play around with it and you will find out how easy it is. Click on the TeamSnap Logo at the top for Help with Account Setup.

There are 3 main sections on the phone app that are very important for getting out information to teams:

The SCHEDULE section has your teams season schedule loaded on to the app. This has important information about the day that you play, the time you play, whether you are the home or away and any special notes needed for that specific day. Coaches and/or Officers will be able to send out a cancelled game or event at the click of a button. Any changes to games or events will automatically send out a message telling you the change that was made.

The ROSTER section has everyone on your team’s name, number, email and info about that person. Please go to this section and fill out your information. You can also upload a photo of yourself for coaches to recognize new players faces with names.

The MESSAGES section is the most important. This is where coaches and officers can send teams information or messages and receive feedback or answers to any questions they might ask. Please respond back so that we know that you are receiving messages.

Last Thoughts….

Coaches should not have to track down players for every Sunday. The only time you should have to say anything to a coach about attendance is when you are not going to be there. It takes a few seconds out of your day to message your coach saying “Can’t make it this weekend.” You are expected to be at every game unless you tell the coach otherwise. It is as simple as that.

And Lastly….

There shouldn’t be any excuse for not knowing what is going on in the HDL universe. We are now using FOUR different ways to get info out to players. The HDL website will always have information about everything the HDL has to offer. Twitter and Facebook are both great tools for alerting league members about changes and info. TeamSnap is used for your individual teams information. Please use them all to stay informed.

One More Thing….

Have a Great Season and See You on the Field!!!

Judson “Judi” Belote

Indoor Spring Training – 3.10

Thanks to Memphis Baseball Academy and to all those who made it possible for us to be able to train last sunday. We were able to hit in batting cages, pitch off mounds and use the open turf room for drills and ground balls. It is always a great opportunity to be able to utilize a facility like this one with the wet and cold weather in Memphis around this time of year.thanks to all those who came out to train. We had a group of about 20 current members show up plus 4 potential rookies.

Rest up and work out the soreness that we are all living through after a day of baseball. Have a great week and we will see you on sunday for our 1st Annual St. Patrick’s Day Scrimmage!!!

Here are a few photos for your entertainment:

One Month In Counting

We are one month away from Spring Training. I hope all of you will be well rested and ready to get back on the diamond. It is always a long offseason which leaves most of us a bit antsy to get back out there. One thing you realize during this waiting period is that life without baseball is needed. We have time to spend with our loved ones and can concentrate on those jobs around the house that are long overdue for attention. I ask all of you to spend as much time with your families as humanly possible. We might call ourselves the tough ones playing a difficult game every weekend but it would not be for the love and support from our families and friends for were that strength comes. Tie up any loose ends you have, finish those winter projects, go take that last weekend trip somewhere and relax. This is what offseasons are for.

That being said, it is always tough at any age to prepare for the long grilling season that we put ourselves through. I hope that most of you have at least looked at a baseball over the offseason. I know I haven’t trained as much as I wanted to and I am sure most of you have not either. Start moving around a little bit more and maybe watch a couple MLB games on tv to get your mind thinking about the game. To end this off, I give you my secret 5s/5s list to finish the last month before we start back. Here are 5 DO’S and 5 DO NOT’S for the remainder of the offseason:




  • Don’t be rude to the waiter/ waitress/ barista/ cashier/ cleaning lady. IT IS NOT VERY NICE!!!
  • Don’t cut your own hair….
  • Don’t shake hands limply. NOBODY LIKES A DEAD FISH…
  • Don’t worry about the dishes, until you absolutely have to. THIS ONE IS VERY EASY TO DO…
  • Don’t be ashamed to admit you totally rocked to Justin Timberlake’s “I’m Bringing Sexy Back” (what, just me?).




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