Posts Tagged ‘Longfellow Park’


Washington D.C.The White House is once again attacking the news media claiming we are reporting stories that are not based in truth. PlayBall! – Alameda’s Sandlot Blog takes exception to this false claim as our stories always follow tried and true investigative reporting practices while pursuing the highest journalism standards.

Now to set the record straight on a 1971 story reported by our predecessor – who shall remain nameless lest we be sued in courts of law. The original PlayBall! supplement headline read as follows: Ray Snyder Shuts Out Indians 11-0. The article further claims that the pitcher played for the Longfellow Tigers of the ARPD’s PeeWee League. Unfortunately, this piece of reporting was made in error.


The local sports editor, must have been pressed for a print deadline following a long night at the Driftwood and allowed his typesetter, Scoop Thomas, to set the storyline. Forty-seven years later, we want to set the record straight once and for all. Here’s the real scoop…

Ray Snyder, was actually the losing pitcher as his Edison Indians were shut down by  Longfellow Tiger hurler Gabe Ponce who also struck out 14 Tribesmen in the win. Also, this was a PeeWee League contest, not a Midget game as reported.

Another victory for truth in journalism! Sorry Ray.


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The legend of Bob “Rocko” Rhodes, who by the way remains an Alameda fixture, started back in his youthful days with the ARPD. Bob began in the department’s employ as an umpire following graduation from the Sam Spear School of Umpiring in 1972. After two years on the circuit, Bob upped his game and paycheck by joining the ranks of the hallowed ARPD park directors. Many also recall Bob as the proprietor of “Rocko’s” on Park Street, a friendly establishment where he dispensed a weekly sermon from his watering hole pulpit to many former park rats.

Tours of Duty: Rittler (1973), Lincoln (1974), Krusi (1975) , Longfellow (1976), Woodstock (1977)

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Did you miss me? Silly question. OF COURSE YOU DID!

Well fellow park rats, even if you didn’t notice my absence here on PlayBall! Alameda’s Sandlot Blog, I know for certain you’ve all missed the legendary Alameda T-Shirt Baseball League. Guess what? Like this blogging pundit, the league is back!

Thanks to the PlayBall! Advisory Committee, chaired by Kevin Kennedy, and in conjunction with Alameda Recreation and Park Department, Friends of the Parks, Alameda Theatre & Cineplex, and the original t-shirt league sponsor, Alameda Elks Club, kids will once again take to the baseball diamonds of Alameda for FREE supervised league play in the park!

The Advisory Committee, consisting of Alameda legends like Lil’ Arnerich, Adrienne Alexander-Chaix, Kyle Conner, John Costello, Eric Cross, Kevin Kearney, Cindi LaCroix, some character named Robles, and Bill Sonneman, joined Kevin to lead the charge in making this happen. It’s been a true labor of love for this crew working with the ARPD, now under Amy Woolridge, and ARPD Supervisor, Pat Russi (Rittler Wildcat).

A gala First Pitch Benefit Party is slated for the Alameda Theatre & Cineplex on Thursday, March 20, 2014. You won’t want to miss it. Some Longfellow Tigers are already growling how they will be best represented that night. We’ll see about that!

Stay tuned park rats because once again it’s time to PlayBall!!!

The mighty Franklin Eagles have already hijacked the big screen at historic Alameda Theatre!

The mighty Franklin Eagles have already hijacked the big screen at historic Alameda Theatre!

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All-Star pitcher Tanya Esposo represents the Longfellow Tigers in the 1973 Jr. Girls North South Classic.

All-Star pitcher Tanya Esposo represents the Longfellow Tigers in the 1973 Jr. Girls North South Classic.

Park Affiliation: Longfellow Tiger

Career Highlights: Tanya pitched in the 1973 Girls All-Star Game for the victorious North team winning 10-0.

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Park Director

Rick contacted PlayBall! to let us know that he’ll be returning to his old Washington Park domain for the All-Parks Reunion. And he did! Rick is male park director #100 on our all-time roster!

Rick coached the 1972 Little Coast Nationals All-Star squad, along with Steve Weiss. Rick’s brother Gary, is also on the all-time park director roster.

Tours of Duty: Washington, Longfellow, Edison, Krusi, Franklin

Rick Fenstermaker in 1972 (J. Johnson photo)

Rick minus the sideburns in 2010 (Photo by Mina)

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With the much ballyhooed addition of Dan “Cranky Pants” Bullock to the All-Time Edison Roster, the Indigenous Band of Ballplayers is now up to 199 members!

Also close to reaching the prestigious 200 Member Club are the following parks:

Longfellow Tigers – 194

Woodstock Seals – 187

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Park Director

John King holds the distinction of coaching three ARPD baseball championship teams in one season. During his assignment to Longfellow Park in 1972, the Tigers won the league crown in the PeeWee, Midget, and Little Coast divisions. John, with the help of his PD associate Doug Bertson, ascended to the throne as “King of all Managers” during that one amazing summer.

Tours of Duty: Longfellow (1972)

The King sports his RayBans along with Gabe Ponce and Gordon Smith

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