Five Things

* Brent Stenman’s in Reno for a regional Babe Ruth meeting and he’s reported that Robert Faherty, the Babe Ruth commissioner who visited Kitsap earlier this week, had some good things to say about North Kitsap’s bid to bring the 2012 World Series for 13-year-olds to the Fairgrounds.

Stenman said Babe Ruth CEO Steve Tellefson congratulated him for the excellent impression the local folks made on Faherty. And Faherty said the group was close to being awarded a World Series.

“It sure seems to be looking good,” Stenman wrote in an e-mail.

* Bree Schaaf’s heading to the other Washington next week. The Bremerton bobsledder and other U.S. Olympians will be feted by the White House and others on Capitol Hill during a three-day visit (April 20-22). Schaaf doesn’t have an itinerary yet, but is pretty sure the  bobsled team is going to the Baltimore Ravens headquarters. Coach John Harbaugh and an assistant came out to Park City, Utah, and spoke at our congratulatory Olympic Team dinner prior to going to Vancouver for the Games.

* June 17. Mark the date on your calendar. That’s the night of the Kitsap County Sports Banquet, which will honor the area’s top male and female athletes from our high school area and Olympic College. Top coaches will also be recognized. The event will be at the Kitsap Golf & Country Club and there will be a new format. It’ll be announced shortly. Bree Schaaf’s tentatively scheduled to be the featured speaker.

* Randy Johnson, who threw out the ceremonial first pitch on Monday at Safeco Field, was asked about the 1998 season when he was locked in a contract dispute with the Mariners. Fans accused him of not giving his best effort. He was 9-10 with a 4.33 ERA in Seattle, and after being traded to Houston, he was 10-1 with a 1.28 over the final two months of the season.
“Admittedly, the six inches between my ears were a little clouded in ’98,” he said. “Being in trade talk and all that was a major distraction.”

Johnson said it was simply a “business,” deal. He was 35 and had no idea that there would such a market for him at that age. Of course, Johnnson went on to pitch another 10 years. He reached 300 wins and will be a first ballot Hall of Famer.

* Poulsbo’s Ryan Villopoto is on a roll. He’s won seven main events on the Supercross circuit, and the Kawasaki rider has closed within 12 points of Ryan Dungey for the overall points lead with four races left. Villopoto will be in Seattle next week, trying to defend his title at Qwest Field.

* Just came across a 1989 edition of the Kitsap Sun, which included a feature on Bremerton High basketball coach Casey Lindberg, then a senior with a picture-perfect jump shot. His coach at the time, Larry Gallagher, told him: “If you were 6-2 or 6-3, you could write your ticket anywhere.” Lindberg was 5-9. Les Eathorne, his stepdad, was quoted in the story: “We don’t care about him being All-American. We just want him to be all-Bremerton, just be as good as you can be.”

* Bob Kelly’s back at the Kitsap Gofl & Country Club, working as an instructor. Stop by and say hello. He’s one of the good guys in golf. Kelly was the club pro at KG&CC years ago. His sons, Ryan and Troy, are probably the top two golfers the area has produced in the last 20 years. Troy Kelly is aching to get back on tour. He lost his PGA Tour card and has been waiting to get fulltime status on the Nationwide Tour.

Update on Troy Kelly. He’s playing in this week’s Fresh Classic in the Bay Area. He shot a 2-over 72 on Thursday. It was an up-and-down round with three birdies, an eagle and a bogey on the front side (32) and two double bogeys, two bogeys and a birdie on the back (40).

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