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 Thursday, September 10, 1992




Tri-County League inducts 8 into “Hall”

Of The Morning Call

Eight new members were inducted into the Tri-County Baseball League Hall of Fame during the recent annual dinner in the West End Youth Center, Allentown.

Modern Era (after 1964) inductees Joe Kemeter, Dominic Motolese, Tom Prosser and Bill Wieder as well as Original Era (pre-1964) inductees Jerry Beck, Sr., John Kandel, Vince Miller and Richard Shook joined the previous 16 Hall of Fame members (eight Modern, eight Original) in the third year of such inductions.

The event, attended by about 150 persons, also included the awarding of the league championship trophy to Gilbertsville as well as the handing out of 16 other awards.

A look at the inductees (honorees must have played or managed for a total of seven years and have been out of the league three years):

* Joe Kemeter formed the Allentown A's in 1971 before moving the team to Limeport in 1972. There, the team won championships in 1976- 77-78. Kemeter was instrumental in reviving the league after its hiatus in 1969.

"I'm happy to see the league as strong and powerful as it is today," said Kemeter. "This is the premier league in the Lehigh Valley and I see nothing but blue skies ahead."

* Dominic Motolese, a hustling infielder, played seven years for manager George Horn's North Parkland team. He tallied a lifetime batting average of .342 and a slugging percentage of .552. He garnered 188 hits in 549 at bats and scored 110 runs. Motolese also clubbed 23 homers and 32 doubles while driving in 104 runs. His best year was 1980 when he hit .435 with 8 homers and a .841 slugging percentage.

* Tom Prosser played second base and shortstop for Silver Creek for eight years, earning a lifetime batting average of .354 with 187 hits in 528 at bats. He also hit 17 homers, six triples, 28 doubles and knocked in 54 runs while earning a slugging percentage of .539. Prosser's best year was 1981 when he hit .490 with nine doubles and four home runs. Before joining the league, Prosser played Legion ball for the Bethlehem Wanderers and also played in the Pocono Mountain League.

* Bill Wieder was another infielder/shortstop who played seven years for Delaware Valley. The one-time all-star earned a lifetime batting average of .323 with 164 hits in 508 at bats. He also had 23 doubles, 12 triples, and 10 homers with 94 RBI with a slugging percentage of .474. In 1982, he hit .421 with five homers and a slugging percentage of .737.

* Jerry Beck was a pitcher/first baseman who also managed for Richlandtown. He also played for Quakertown in the old East Penn League. While at Richlandtown, Beck got into the Tri-Co playoffs on several occasions and played into the 1960's. Beck is deceased and his award was accepted by his son, Jerry Beck, Jr.

* John Kandel also played for Richlandtown and had a reputation as one of the best fielders around. The southpaw was also a powerhitter.

* Vince Miller was a pitcher for Emmaus and also managed Limeport at one point. He played for the 1947 Tri-County League champion Emmaus squad (21-7). He had two of the team's eight hits in that 7-3 victory played before 1,200 fans in Emmaus. He helped the team make it to the finals by pitching both ends of a doubleheader and adding a grand slam. When manager for Limeport, Miller won the Tri-Co title for the late Howard Fegely.

* Richard Shook played for Leo Williams' Hellertown team beginning as a junior in high school -- playing under the name Andy Makarchuk to be able to get into the first game. He was one of the best relief pitchers in his day and could also handle the catching chores.

Besides the overall trophy, Gilbertsville accepted the award for winning the Southern Division (27-3) and the Lehigh Valley Championship against Banko's of the Blue Mountain League.

Limeport (20-9) took the Northern Division championship award while Dave Snyder of the Haviland Mudcats (14-15) took Manager of the Year honors.

The league MVP was Ray Thompson, who hit .414 with 13 extra base hits, six homers and 35 RBI for Silver Creek. Thompson also tied with Gilbertsville's Jeff Evans and Silver Creek's Matt Smull for the home run title (six apiece) and led the league in RBI (35).

Cetronia's Todd Grebb had the highest batting average with 43 hits in 94 at bats (.457) and added five homers. Gilbertsville's Chris Ludy was named the MVP pitcher after amassing an 8-1 record with a 0.99 ERA and 29 strikeouts in 56.2 innings pitched.

Quakertown's Bill Myers was the strikeouts leader with 65 in 63 innings of work while fellow hurler Tom Hartman (7-1, 1.58 ERA), of Gilbertsville, was recognized for tossing a no-hitter.

Gilbertsville's Greg Gilbert was given an award for being MVP of the All-Star game while teammate Chris Mackey was honored for being the L.V. Series MVP.

Herb Hemerly of the Allentown Angels earned an award for being the league's first 20-year player. Hemerly is first in all-time at bats (1,403), fourth in runs (229), third in hits (421), third in homers (44) and seventh in RBI (225).


From The Morning Call -- September 10, 1992

Copyright © 1992, The Morning Call