Archived Material

Click on past months to check out all of the Mitten State Sports Report's archived material!

Friday, May 31, 2013

West Park Renovation Photo Album

The renovation project at West Park is complete!  West Park officially reopens tonight!

The ball diamond at West Park has never looked better!

This photo was taken last summer before the construction project began!

The diamond at West Park now has a professional look to it!

The finishing touches on a garden area are being completed near the parking lot!

This photo was taken last year!  It shows the early developments of the new garden area at West Park!

The historic stage where legends like Jerry Garcia, and Iggy Pop performed remains intact!

The entire park was under construction!

This photo was taken last year!  The last of the construction equipment was removed about a month ago!

West Park is open again!

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West Park Ready To Reopen!

West Park in Ann Arbor officially reopens tonight!

     The renovation project in, and around West Park (in downtown Ann Arbor) is complete, and West Park officially reopens tonight to host community recreational baseball leagues that have called West Park home for several years!  For weeks, the park has been partially open to the public, but has remained cluttered with construction equipment, which has taken up most of the parking since the construction project began last fall.  The equipment is gone, and the finishing touches on a garden area near the parking lot are being completed. West Park is located in downtown Ann Arbor and is accessible through various entrances.  The main entrance is off of Chapin Street near Miller Avenue.  The same leagues that use Veterans Memorial Park, also use the ball diamond at West Park in somewhat of a backup roll.  The ball diamond at West Park has always been a great place to play, but the field has always done a poor job retaining water, even long after the rainfall has ended.  One of the goals of the renovation project was to solve this problem, along with the constant flooding that has been an ongoing problem in and around West Park for years.  Although the diamonds at Veterans Memorial Park (located on the corner of  Maple, and Dexter west of downtown Ann Arbor) have always been superior to the diamond at West Park (specifically Vets #5), the recreational attributes, and history of West Park make it the better park to visit for lounging, walking the dog, or various activities including plays at the historical stage which is quietly tucked away beyond the ball diamond.  Throughout the years, several famous entertainers have performed for free on the stage in West Park while visiting Ann Arbor.  Some of the more well known artists known to perform there include Jerry Garcia, (from the Grateful Dead) and Iggy Pop.   West Park also features a boardwalk style bridge that crosses over a pond, quiet trails through a beautiful part of downtown Ann Arbor, and large hills perfect for blankets, and birds eye views of the peaceful sights, and sounds of nature.

The historical stage at West Park where Jerry Garcia, (from the Grateful Dead) and Iggy Pop once performed!

Behind the stage at West Park where famous performers have entered!

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Friday, May 24, 2013

Vets Park Renovation Photo Album

Vets Park was far from finished three weeks ago when this photo was taken!

Vets #5 just three weeks ago!

Vets #5 earlier this week!

Bleacher seating will be placed on top of the cement!

The ball diamonds have never looked better!

Vets Park will officially reopen next Friday (May 31st)!

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Vets Park 1 Year Later!

The renovation at Vets Park in Ann Arbor is almost complete!

     Veterans Memorial Park (Vets Park) in Ann Arbor is set to reopen next week after a year long renovation project that brought several new improvements to the baseball, and softball fields.  The i's are getting dotted and the t's are getting crossed as the final touches are being added.  The pool is scheduled to reopen tomorrow, while the baseball, and softball diamonds will officially reopen next Friday.  The entrances to all of the fields are blocked off until next Friday, and signs letting everyone know are posted everywhere.  New sod has been added, along with a paved parking lot, and the dimensions for Vets #5 have been slightly altered.  The new dimensions are 344ft to center field, 300ft to the left field corner, and the right field corner is 288 ft.  Check out last years posts to compare photos and dimensions.  Vets Park is located on the corner of Maple, and Dexter just west of downtown Ann Arbor.
     Cement pads were poured for all the benches and bleacher areas, but dugouts were not installed as previously planned by the renovation committee. The baseball and softball diamonds have never looked better however, as new dirt, and grass have given the fields a professional look.  Vets Park is home to several baseball, and softball leagues, including an adult 'wood bat' league which features top ball players from the area.  Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor competes in the adult 'wood bat' league against the Ann Arbor A's, the Michigan Tigers, and several other sponsored teams from the Mitten State.  The baseball, and softball leagues help support the community, and the city of Ann Arbor benefits from the money generated by the leagues.  It's refreshing to see the city of Ann Arbor giving back to its community by investing in its parks and recreational system.  Community baseball and softball leagues will remain a staple of Ann Arbor for years to come. 

New sod, dirt, and cement have been added to Vets Park 

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Flat Rock Week 4 Photo Album

The action never stops in a 250 lap Enduro!

No caution flags, just non stop racing!

Robb Remick and the #3 car won the 250 Lap Enduro!

The MCR Dwarf Cars race around the track at Flat Rock Speedway!

Steven Bobek and the #7 car won the MCR Dwarf Car 25 Lap Feature!  Bobek then proposed to his girlfriend!

The Figure-8 Boat Race is always a fan favorite!

Look out!

It takes time to clean up the devastation!

For more info on Flat Rock Speedway click on

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Remick Rallies To Win 250 Lap Enduro!

Once the dust settled, Robb Remick and the #3 car claimed victory at Flat Rock!

     Last Saturday, Robb Remick claimed victory in the 250 Lap Enduro at Flat Rock Speedway.  It was Remick's first victory ever recorded at Flat Rock Speedway, and he celebrated by giving the fans a show as seen in the photo above.  The weather was the warm, and the grandstands were full for a racing schedule that also included Dwarf Car racing, and Figure-8 Boat Racing! 


Steven Bobek and the #7 car claimed victory in the 25 Lap MCR Dwarf Car Feature at Flat Rock! 

     Although the cars were tiny, the engines were powerful on the MCR Dwarf Cars.  Steven Bobek and the #7 car took the checkered flag in the 25 lap feature.  The small cars zoomed around the track, and it was unbelievable to see the speed, and capability of the mini machines.  After the victory, Bobek got down on one knee and proposed to his girlfriend.  Judging by the crowds reaction she said yes.

Troy Brehmer and the #42 car survived the Figure-8 Boat Race to claim victory!

     Troy Brehmer and the #42 car survived the Figure-8 Boat Race and claimed victory in the fan favorite event that resembles a demolition derby.  Of the six vehicles that competed, only two were able to finish the race.  Most of the vehicles that competed in the Figure-8 Boat Race also competed in the 250 Lap Enduro.  There were no serious collisions that occurred during the race, but four boats did become dislodged from their vehicles. 

Watch out for boats in the road!

For more info on Flat Rock Speedway check out

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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Home Run Derby II The Return of the Long Ball!

Manning Park in Redford will host the festivities for the second consecutive year!

     In just over three weeks, Manning Park in historical Redford Township will host the 2nd Annual Mitten State Sports Report Home Run Derby for the second consecutive year.  The date has been set for Sunday June 9th, and the event is once again scheduled for prime time with an official start time at 7:00 pm.  Pre-registration for participation will be required this year due to the heavy volume of participants during last years event.  Anyone wishing to participate can pre-register at  by emailing your name, and putting Home Run Derby as the subject.  You will then receive a confirmation notice via email, and once you confirm your participation by responding to the confirmation email, you are registered, it's that simple!
     Manning Park is located on the corner of Glendale, and Marion, just three blocks east of Beach Daly!  Gates open at 6:00, Derby begins at 7:00.  Enjoy refreshments, meet celebrities, hit some home runs, shag fly balls, or just sit and enjoy the action from your favorite spot at Manning Park.  There will be no cash prize, but one lucky winner will be featured on the Mitten State Sports Report!  Several will compete, but only one will win!  Here are the rules:

                                                    Home Run Derby Rules

-  Wood, or wooden bats must be used.  If you do not have a wooden bat, one will be provided for you.  If it is ruled that a competitors bat is corked, that competitor and his bat will be immediately disqualified from the Derby.

- Must be 18 and over to compete.  Youngsters can shag fly balls.

-  Pre-registration is required!  Pre-register at  Participants who register first will hit last, participants who register last will hit first.

-  Both competitors, and fans will have the opportunity to shag fly balls and possibly rob batters of home runs.  Please be courteous, and respectful to other fans who are chasing down fly balls.

-  Each round consists of 27 outs.  Each swing that does not result in a home run is considered an out.  The amount of rounds will be determined by the number of participants.  The maximum number of rounds to be played will be three.  Home run totals will not transfer from round to round.  

-  Have fun! Have a good attitude!

Several will compete!  Only one will win!

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Thursday, May 16, 2013

2013 Plymouth Whalers Photo Album

Pete Krupsky "The Krupper", and Sean Baligian called the action at Compuware Arena for another Whalers season!

#25 Vincent Trocheck was a great addition for the Plymouth Whalers!

Alex Nedeljkovic played outstanding in net for the Plymouth Whalers!

#28 Connor Carrick, and #10 Tom Wilson celebrate a Whalers goal against Jordan Binnington and the Owen Sound Attack! 

The Whalers lit the lamp against the Brampton Battalion!

The Whalers celebrated several victories along their journey to the Western Conference Finals!

#13 Michael Whaley, #23 Connor Sills, and #7 Austin Levi congratulate their goalie after a win!

#22 Matt Mistele celebrates with his teammates!

#16 Garret Meurs takes the faceoff in a game against Niagra!

The Whalers against the Spitfires!

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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Poll to Poll

Justin Verlander should accumulate several wins for the Detroit Tigers this season!

     In case you haven't noticed, and judging by the response you haven't; the month of May has brought with it another intriguing poll question for you to ponder while viewing the Mitten State Sports Report.  Before we get into May's question, here are the results from the first ever Mitten State Sports Report's Poll Question held back in March.  The question was:  Will Michigan, or Michigan St. advance further in the NCAA men's basketball tournament?  The results were stunning!

A. Michigan                                                             0%

B. Michigan St.                                                        60%

C. Both will be eliminated in the same round          40%   

     Just to refresh everyone's memory, the Michigan Wolverines advanced further in the NCAA men's basketball tournament.  If you didn't vote, there is redemption in the form of another poll question.  Here is how to vote!

1.  Log onto the Mitten State Sports Report!

2.  Click on your favorite post!

3.  Scroll down, locate the poll question!

4.  Vote!

     Many people feel that Justin Verlander will accumulate the most wins for the Detroit Tigers this season.  The Tigers have a solid starting rotation to follow Verlander, including Max Scherzer, Annibal Sanchez, and Doug Fister.  Rick Porcello is the fifth starter in the Tigers rotation, but did not earn a spot in our poll question.  This months poll question is:  Which of the following starting pitchers will win the most games in the regular season this year for the Detroit Tigers?  The three choices are Max Scherzer, Annibal Sanchez, or Doug Fister.  Vote!

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Saturday, May 11, 2013

Error Stats For Umpires?

     I was watching the Tigers game a couple of weeks ago during their west coast trip to Los Angeles when I noticed a blown call at second base.  Omar Infante was called out on a force play at second, and it was clear while watching the play live that Infante should have been called safe.  Jim Leyland came out to argue the call to no avail, and several instant replays showed that Infante was clearly safe.
     I'm sure that the umpires review controversial calls after the game, and when Jim Joyce blew the call that robbed Andres Galarraga of a perfect game a few years ago, Joyce owned it the following day.  This is rare in the game of baseball, and rarely do umpires admit fault, especially at levels where there is no instant replay.
     The game of baseball keeps statistics on everything.  Every pitch, every catch, every out, and every error are recorded, and even when a player doesn't make the spectacular play, he can still be charged with an error.
     I propose that error stats should be tracked for umpires at the Major League level.  This could also be enforced in the minor leagues, and in the SEC division of college baseball.  Basically, error stats on umpires could be tracked only when there is access to video review after each game.
     The point of keeping error stats on umpires is not to degrade umpires, or to somehow lessen the smug attitude that some umpires have developed.  The point is to hold umpires accountable to their mistakes, while improving the game by allowing the umpires with the fewest errors to work the most important games, like the post season, and the All-Star Game.  The umpires' union protects its bad umpires, and by keeping track of error stats, the umpires union could promote their better umpires by letting them work the games that matter most. 
     Many people insist that adding more instant replay is the answer, but the human element, along with the occasional mistake is the way baseball has always done it.  Slowing down the game, and asking managers to officiate the game like the NFL does by issuing challenge flags is not the answer.
     Anyone who as ever played the game knows that plenty of double plays occur where the second baseman never touches second base before throwing to first.  Sometimes the runner beats out the double play ball at first, but if the double play looks good, the umpire will credit the defense with the out.  My point is, where do you draw the line when reviewing or challenging calls?  Catchers will sometimes frame a pitch, meaning they take a pitch thrown outside the strike zone, and pull it back into the strike zone and hold it.  Should these plays be reviewed?   Adding more in game reviews is not the answer for baseball, but maybe adding error stats for umpires is?  Tell me what you think?  Leave a comment!  Or email the Mitten State Sports Report directly at

Friday, May 10, 2013

Trocheck Named OHL's Most Valuable Player

Vincent Trocheck played for the Saginaw Spirit, and the Plymouth Whalers!

     Vincent Trocheck was named the Ontario Hockey League's (OHL) Most Valuable Player (MVP)
today after leading the league in scoring during the regular season.  Trocheck recieved the Red Tilson Trophy, which is awarded to the OHL's Most Valuable Player just weeks after recieving the Eddie Powers Trophy, which is awarded to the OHL's leading goal scorer during the regular season.  Trocheck played three and a half seasons with the Saginaw Spirit, and became the Spirit's Captain before being traded to the Plymouth Whalers this season at the trading deadline.  Trocheck scored 50 goals, and added 59 assists during the 2012-2013 regular season, and should be a welcome addition to the Florida Panthers.  The Panthers selected Trocheck in the third round of the 2011 NHL draft. 

Trocheck should become a welcome addition to the Florida Panthers!

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Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Flat Rock Week 2 Photo Album

An up close look at Eric Lee's #5 car which won the Late Model 50 lap feature on Saturday!

Eric Fitzpatrick and the #05 car are loaded up!

Frank Jiovani and the #45 car pack it up for the evening!

A look from behind!

The Figure-8 race experienced a spin out but no serious crashes occured!

Greg Studt stood alone before, and after the race!  Studt claimed victory in the Figure-8 20 lap spectacular!

Scott Selmi took the checkered flag in the Street Stock 25 lap race!

For more info on Flat Rock Speedway click on

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