The baseball season for the Missoula PaddleHeads was wiped out last summer because of COVID-19. And even with a lost season there was plenty of action as the team wondered what their future relationship with Major League Baseball would look like. It turns out that there isn't much of a future at all after Missoula and a bunch of other teams around the country were eliminated from being members of Minor League Baseball and the Pioneer League will operate as an independent. The move means the PaddleHeads are no longer a minor league affiliate for the Arizona Diamondbacks as they were before.

But MLB affiliation or not, there's baseball to be played this summer and the PaddleHeads were missing one important piece of the puzzle - a manager. Come to think of it.....that would make for a great motivational movie! Picture a group of ball players coming off of a lost season because of the pandemic. They get the word they're no longer in the pipeline to the big leagues because the team lost their MLB affiliation. For reasons we'll write into the script later, they play the year without a manager. Against all odds they grow closer than brothers as they navigate a season and prove that true winning doesn't come from a manager - it comes from within. I don't know.....it's a rough draft.....we'll work on it.

As I was about to say before I laid out details of the next Hollywood blockbuster - the PaddleHeads held a virtual press conference today and announced the hiring of a manager for the team. Michael Schlact has spent most of his life either playing or coaching baseball and that includes 10 seasons as a player in the minors followed by coaching positions since 2015.

An story on the PaddleHeads website has full details of the hire along with some thoughts from the team's new skipper:

“I am incredibly honored, humbled, and blessed to be named the Manager of the Missoula PaddleHeads.” Said Schlact. “This is a first-rate organization & a community that people across the country & within the baseball world speak very highly of. My family & I couldn’t be more thankful to Peter, Matt, and the rest of the organization. We look forward to spending our summer in Missoula & getting to know the wonderful people both at the ballpark & in the community. Our goal from day one is to have a team that is professional on and off the field while competing for a championship year in and year out. We’re thrilled to be bringing an exciting baseball experience to Missoula all summer long.”

 

The PaddleHeads will start their season on May 22 and tickets are available online.

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