United League's loss is GBL's All-Star gain
United League Baseball's loss turned into a game for half of the Golden Baseball League's All-Stars.
ULB and the GBL played an all-star game in Texas last year in what was supposed to be the first year of a two-year agreement between the leagues, with this year's game at Orange County.
But United Baseball folded in the offseason, GBL CEO Dave Kaval said, and the new owners picked up the names and logos without having to pick up any existing contracts.
Kaval said the league is in court with the old owners to settle the funds lost from the contract not being honored, but is looking forward to Tuesday's North-versus-South clash.
On the plus side, it let 23 extra GBL players into the game, which will be in St. George and feature two Yuma Scorpions - Emiliano Fruto and Carlos Villalobos.
Tijuana rumors false
Kaval also cleared up some recent rumors that have sprung up over the last month involving the Tijuana Potros.
Originally slated to be in the GBL this season, the Potros put their season on hold due to the swine flu epidemic in Mexico. At the time, the Potros were to start in the GBL in 2010.
But ULB posted - and then removed - from its Web site a story saying the Potros would join United Baseball midseason. That proved to be false, but rumors persisted that Tijuana would join ULB next year. Kaval said that if Tijuana is playing baseball next year, it will be for the GBL.
"They have to make sure they get their stadium back and all the ducks are in a row," Kaval said. "Everything is tracking the right way, but they hit a setback last year. (Joining ULB) was just a rumor. They played some exhibition games, but they didn't join the league - to my knowledge at least."
Arizona Summer League finding success
On the heels of the successful Arizona Winter League, Scorpions President Mike Marshall has spearheaded the Arizona Summer League, featuring 60 players searching for contracts with affiliated or independent teams.
After just a week of games, two players have already signed - former AWC and Scorpions pitcher James Kuzniak with Costal Bend (Corpus Christi, Tex.) of the United League and shortstop Steve Mays with the St. Paul Saints of the Northern League.
The league plays at the back fields at the Ray Kroc Complex and will play feature games the next three Saturdays at Desert Sun Stadium, including the championship game July 25. Admission is free and concessions are $1.
GBL names Players of the Month
Former Scorpion A.J. Valentine was named the league's Hitter of the Month, leading the league in homers and RBIs as June came to a close.
Valentine hit 22 home runs and drove in 106 runs in 129 games in Yuma over the last two seasons.
Joining St. George this year, he hit eight homers in the month, drove in 46 RBI and led the league with a .678 slugging average while hitting .372.
In addition, he is considered one of the top defensive first basemen in the league and was key to his Roadrunners winning the first half South Division title.
Victoria's Isaac Hess was the Pitcher of the Month, going 5-0 with a 2.45 ERA in the hitters' league.