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Former Crab Scott Heinig Dies

ARCATA (April 18) — It is with great sadness that the Humboldt Crabs announce the passing of Scott Heinig, a Crabs pitcher in 2009 and 2010. He was 22 years old.

Heinig, who was named the Crabs' co-Pitcher of the Year in 2009, was at a gathering at a friend's home in Davis on Saturday evening when he apparently fell and hit his head, according to police reports. He was rushed to the hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries just after noon on Sunday.

"Scott was a great young man," said Crabs Head Coach Robin Guiver, who was in Davis on Saturday and had watched the Aggies play Cal State Bakersfield with Heinig hours before the tragedy. "Everybody not only liked him, but really respected him. He was a kid that positively impacted a lot of lives."

Heinig's death marks the second time in four years that the Humboldt Crabs community has lost a recent alumnus to a head injury. In 2007, pitcher Kevin Morsching died after falling while skateboarding at home in South Dakota weeks after the season ended.

Humboldt Crabs President Matt Filar issued the following statement about Heinig's death:

The Crabs have been in existence since 1945, so it's a fact of life that we would hear of the passing of one of our own over time.  It's especially heartbreaking, however, when we hear of the tragic loss of one of our young members.  Scott Heinig was a special member of the Crabs when he was here for the 2009 and 2010 seasons, and I'm still in shock after hearing of the accident that took his life. The news of Scott's accident brought back the still painful memories of Kevin Morsching, who died in 2007 soon after the end of the season of a similar injury. As President, and being nowhere near the age of our players, I don't get the opportunity to get familiar with most of the athletes that come to Arcata for two months out of the year, but Scott was one whom I felt close to. Thoughts go out to his friends and family, not only mine, but those of the entire Crabs family.

Heinig was a popular figure both in his time with the Crabs and in the Davis baseball community. With the Crabs, he had been a solid and versatile pitcher, posting a 7-2 record and a 1.23 ERA in two seasons and sharing the 2009 Crabs Pitcher of the Year honors with John Austin.

He had also been a standout at Davis High School and UC Davis, and after graduating college last year, had gone back to serve as the pitching coach at his former high school. His death sent shockwaves through the Davis community.

The baseball field at Davis High School, where Heinig had led his team to two league titles and been named the 2006 Monticello Empire League Player of the Year, became a memorial site for those who knew him to gather, and UC Davis canceled its scheduled game Sunday upon hearing of the accident.

"Scott was elected a team captain his senior season, which speaks to how well respected he was by his teammates and to his work ethic and positive attitude," said Aggies head coach Rex Peters in a statement. "He had an infectious smile and put his teammates in front of himself."

Friends and former teammates also took to the Internet to express their grief. Two-time Crabs MVP Jeff Giacomini, posting on the team's Facebook page, said, "Scott was a fierce competitor, he played with his heart and extreme compassion. He was a great team mate (sic) and a great friend. Scott will be missed and remembered everyday."

A memorial service will be held at Freedom Hall on the UC Davis campus on Tuesday, April 26 at 6:30 p.m. Anyone interested in attending should contact the Crabs here or by calling (707) 826-2333.

Scott Heinig Career Stats with Humboldt Crabs

Year           ERA   W-L APP GS CG SHO/CBO SV    IP   H  R ER  BB  SO   AB B/Avg
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2009*.......  0.94   5-2  12  4  2   2/0    1  47.2  36  5  5  12  58  169  .213
2010........  1.75   2-0   8  3  1   0/2    0  25.2  16  7  5  16  23   89  .180
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total.......  1.23   7-2  20  7  3   2/2    1  73.1  52 12 10  28  81  258  .202

*Named Crabs co-Pitcher of the Year

On the Web

Original Crab Reco Pastori Passes Away

ABOVE: Reco Pastori, left, with fellow original Crab Wally Scott, center, and current Crabs manager Matt Nutter.

Editor's note: Original Crab and Humboldt County baseball and football legend Reco Pastori passed away this week. Reprinted with permission below is part of Neil Tarpey's April 9 story in the Times-Standard, with a link to the rest of the story. 

Visitation will be at Sanders Funeral Home, 1835 E Street in Eureka on Sunday, April 10 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. A Celebration of Life will follow at the Eureka Wharfinger Building, One Marina Way, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

by Neil Tarpey
The Times-Standard

 

His high school football team did not allow a single point all season.

His daring base running exploits on the diamond drew comparisons to Ty Cobb.

Reco Pastori, a legendary and popular Humboldt County athlete, passed away on Wednesday, April 6 at the age of 92.

"He was a very well-liked kid, very well respected,” said Jack Walsh in a phone interview. “And he was such a great athlete. He was just a natural.”

Walsh, 93, who worked for decades as a physician in Eureka, was one of Pastori's teammates on the “Wonder Team.” That's what they called the 1935 Eureka High School football squad coached by Jay Willard.

Pastori, considered a great all-around athlete, played left end on that EHS Hall of Fame team that shut out all eight of its opponents and outscored them by a combined 283-0.

The 6-0 victory over Grant Union of Sacramento in the Northern California championship game on November 28, 1935 was the pinnacle of a memorable season.

One account described the championship contest “as being one of the hardest fought, most interesting, and best played games in Albee Stadium. The crowd was the largest of the season, and probably the largest in the history of the school ...”

In addition to Pastori's football talents, he was an avid hunter and golfer and enjoyed out-of-town sports trips.

But many North Coast sports fans will recall Pastori for his exploits for the Humboldt Crabs.

Read the rest of the story at Times-Standard.com.

Crabs Legend Wally Scott Passes Away

Editor's note: Wally Scott, who played for the Humboldt Crabs from 1946-1948 and again in 1951, passed away last week. We have decided to reprint the following article, written by former Crabs boardmember Jim Gould, from our 2008 program in his memory...

WALLY SCOTT – RADIOMAN, GUNNER, SHORTSTOP

On June 6, 1944 Wally Scott flew over bloody Normandy in his B-17 on the way to drop bombs on the Germans. He remembers looking down, seeing all those ships and wondering: “Damn, what’re all those boats doing down there?”

The Japanese, the last of the Axis Powers, surrendered 14 months later when Staff Sergeant Wally Scott of Blue Lake, California was in Clovis, New Mexico training for B-29’s. Nine months later, Wally had traded in his radio and headphones for a bat and glove; his sergeant’s stripes for a uniform with the Humboldt Crabs.

Introducing Crabcasts!

The Humboldt Crabs are proud to introduce a new fan-friendly feature on our website: Crabcasts!

 

Crabcasts are just what the name implies. They are downloadable audio podcasts about the Crabs. We hope to bring you various types of content, from interviews with former players to round tables about the team to replays of a few classic Crabs moments.

 

Crabcasts can be downloaded at http://www.humboldtcrabs.com/crabcasts/. You'll find a link for Crabcasts in the "Fan Zone" menu at the top of our page. To make sure you are alerted when new Crabcasts are added, be sure to follow the Crabs on Twitter and Facebook.

 

Crabcasts are available in two formats: iTunes(m4a) and mp3. Download them and play them in your favorite media player. For those of you who like your iTunes libraries super-organized, the m4a files include Crabcast artwork, and the artwork is also available as a separate download.

 

The first two Crabcasts are available right now, featuring radio voice Hoke Holcomb interviewing Crabs president Matt Filar and past president Jerry Nutter, and manager Matt Nutter. We've got more in the pipeline as we move towards our 67th season. We hope you enjoy them!

 

 

Crabs Dominate Sac State All-Decade Team

When the Sacramento State Hornets compiled their 2001-2010 all-decade team last year, the Crabs were well represented, with fully one third of the team — four out of 12 — having spent time at the Arcata Ball Park.

The four former Crabs honored were Everet Rincon (shortstop), Aurelio Jackson (outfield), Chris Kinsey (utility) and Matt Wilson (catcher).

Rincon, who played for the Hornets from 2002-2006 was an and a wizard with the glove. He holds the school record with 34 sacrifice bunts in his career and is one of only a handful of players in Sacramento State history to record five hits in a game.

"Everet was a pleasure to watch play shortstop," said Crabs manager and former player Matt Nutter. "Great range for a hard-working, fundamentally sound player who enjoyed the game and played it the right way."

Jackson was a speedster who terrorized on the basepaths and roamed centerfield from 1998-2001. He holds three Hornets career records: hits (229), runs (138) and stolen bases (85).

"A.J. was one of the most exciting players I've ever seen come through here," said Nutter. "If he got on first base, you knew he was going to turn it into a double if not a triple. He was running on every pitch."

Kinsey was a dangerous foe both on the mound and at the plate. As a senior he led the Hornets staff in appearances, innings pitched, strikeouts and opponents' batting average, and his career marks in home runs and doubles are second-best in school history.

"Kinsey was a great talent," said Nutter. "Kind of an Adam Carr/David Popkins type of guy."

Wilson is best known in recent Crabs history as an assistant coach under Nutter until 2009. But as a catcher for both the Hornets and the Crabs, he excelled as well.

"Matt Wilson was the guy you wanted behind the dish if you were pitching," said Nutter. "Hard-nosed, hard-working catcher who had some pop at the plate. He was a complete player, and was a great coach for us as well."

The official Sacramento State release can be found here.  

Crabs Schedule Out, Tickets (And More) On Sale

It is officially less than six months until the 2011 edition of the Humboldt Crabs hits the diamond, and the team has just unveiled its schedule for the upcoming year.

The Crabs' 67th season begins with the annual opening dinner on Friday, June 3, and the on-field action begins the next day with a day-night doubleheader against the traditional opening day rival Fairfield Indians.

The first of two games against the local rival Steelheads is Wednesday, June 8th, and that is followed by the Crabs first series in Far West League play against Fontanetti's Athletics.

The team will hit the road twice in 2011, first taking a six-game trip to Chico and Medford to play the NorCal Pirates and Southern Oregon RiverDawgs, respectively from July 13-16, then travelling to Redding for a three-game set against the Redding Colt .45s

The weekend after that, the Crabs will play host to the inaugural Far West League Playoff Tournament. More details about the tournament will be forthcoming. The full 2011 schedule is available on http://www.humboldtcrabs.com.

Season tickets for 2011 are on sale now at Ray's Food Place in McKinleyville, Arcata, Eureka and Fortuna, as well as Solo Sports in Arcata, the Eureka and Arcata chambers of commerce and both Big Pete's Pizzeria locations. Ten-ticket strips will also be available. For more information or an printable ticket order form, visit http://humboldtcrabs.com.

The Crabs will also be selling tickets and merchandise at Arcata Main Street's office in the Jacoby Storehouse during Arts! Arcata on Friday, December 10 from 6-9 p.m. Crabs gear and tickets make great gifts so come on down and say hi!

Steelheads looking for a coach

The Humboldt Steelheads are searching for the right applicant to fill the position of Manager/Head Coach for the 2011 season. The Manager/Head Coach position is a paid part-time management position created by the Board of Directors of Humboldt Crabs, Inc. The Manager/Head Coach serves at the direction of the Crabs Board of Directors and provides over-all leadership to the Humboldt Steelheads baseball program and represents the values and mission of the Humboldt Crabs organization and the mission of the Steelheads program.

It is expected that the Manager/Head Coach will maintain a positive stature both on and off the field, during and between seasons of competitive play so that the community in general, recruited players, collegiate coaches, summer collegiate baseball team opponents will continue to see the Humboldt Crabs Steelhead’s program as a positive and important part of baseball in Humboldt County, with a strong focus on developing young local talent.

The Manager/Head Coach, in coordination with the Humboldt Crabs Board of Directors, will be responsible for all on- and off-field aspects of Steelheads program, including, but not limited to, the following: local player recruitment, scheduling, positive player relations and game management, Humboldt County community and media involvement, coordination with opposing teams/leagues, and for maintaining a positive relationship with the Humboldt Crabs and Board of Directors.

In order to maintain the highest standards of the Humboldt Crabs and the Steelhead program, we will give preference to applicants with collegiate and/or professional playing and/or coaching experience, knowledge and experience in Humboldt County, and good interpersonal skills. Compensation will be determined based on experience and within a range set by the Humboldt Crabs Board of Directors.

Interested applicants please email a cover letter, resume, and 3 references to Dan Duke, Humboldt Crabs Baseball at dduke06@hotmail.com. All applications must be received by Monday, December 6, 2010.

 


 

Announcing the Far West League

In a move that could shape the West Coast summer collegiate baseball landscape for decades to come, the WCL Tri-State and the Pacific West Baseball League have announced that they are merging, beginning in 2011.

The new Far West League, as it will be called, will include 11 teams competing in two divisions, the North and the South.

The six-team North Division will include three of the teams that were in WCL Tri-State — originally co-sponsored by the West Coast League — including the Humboldt Crabs, Redding Colt .45s and the Southern Oregon RiverDawgs. Joining them are the PWBL's California Seals and newcomers the NorCal Pirates and the Reno Aces.

Three other former PWBL teams — the California Glory, Atwater Aviators and Fresno Cardinals — will join Fontanetti's Athletics and the Neptune Beach Pearl in the South Division.

The new league's goal is a lofty but worthy one.

"The WCL Tri-State and the PWBL are joining forces to form a highly competitive league," said volunteer commissioner and Crabs boardmember Roger Lorenzetti, "and to continue to attract the very best collegiate players."

Steven Cannady of the Athletics echoed that sentiment.

"I believe the Far West League will be the premier all-colligiate league on the West Coast," he said, "and will be comparable on the national scene to the Cape Cod league, Northwoods League, and Alaska League within the first 2-3 years of operation. Our goal is to be the best All-Collegiate baseball league in the country."

Each team will play three league games against every other team — regardless of division — for a total of 24 league games per team. At the end of the league season, the top eight teams will compete in a round-robin tournament to determine the league champion. Most teams in the new Far West League are done or nearly done with their 2011 playing schedule.

The venue for the tournament will rotate from year to year, with Humboldt hosting the inaugural event on August 4, 5, 6 and 7. League play across the Far West League will get under way the weekend of June 10 - 11- 12.

Season 66 is in the Books

ARCATA (Aug. 8, 2010) — Well, it's official: time flies when you're having fun.

The Humboldt Crabs survived a late rally by the Humboldt Steelheads to win 5-4 at the Arcata Ball Park on Sunday, marking the end of a highly successful season that seemed to whizz by.

How successful, you may ask? Of all Crabs teams to play more than 50 games, this team's 43-9 record ranks fifth in team history. They ended the campaign on a 10-game winning streak, accomplishing the goal manager Matt Nutter had issued to keep the losses to single digits after a three-game slide in mid-July left them at 33-9.

Coming off a thrilling victory in the WCL Tri-State Tournament title game on Saturday, Sunday's affair had almost a festival air to it. Home run derby (Todd Eagle won it), half-priced concessions, banner presentations, awards, kids running the bases, and of course, great baseball.

Thanks largely to the work of starter David Popkins, the Crabs were cruising along with a 5-1 lead heading into the eighth, but three-time former Crabs MVP Jeff Giacomini uncorked a bases-clearing double with two outs and it was suddenly 5-4. But Derrick Dingeman once again came in and preserved the 43rd and final victory of the 2010 Crabs season.

After the game, the traditional postseason awards were handed out. Popkins was named the team MVP for his accomplishments both on offense and on the mound; Andrew Ayers and Garrett Yrigoyen (#GarrettYrigoyen) were named best offensive and defensive players, respectively; and Bryson Rahier was honored with the Kevin Morsching "coach's award."

The Steelheads also gave out some postseason hardware. Spencer Duggan received MVP honors; Giacomini was the top offensive player; Kevin Ayers was the best defensive player; and Justin Yslas received both top pitcher and coach's award.

Thanks to all the fans who came out to make Season 66 one of the best yet!

Crabs Claim WCL Tri-State Title

ARCATA (Aug. 7, 2010) — If you could write the script to a Saturday afternoon at the ballpark, this might be how you'd write it.

On a beautiful warm sunny day before a raucous crowd at the Arcata Ball Park, the Humboldt Crabs broke a scoreless tie in the ninth inning to beat the Redding Colt .45s 1-0 on Saturday to claim the inaugural WCL Tri-State Tournament championship.

David Popkins got the hit that finally broke the seal, poking a single past first base to drive in Ryan Barnes from third base. Barnes had walked to lead off the top of the ninth (the Crabs were the "visiting" team in the game) and advanced to third when Redding first baseman's Aarason Perry threw the ball down the line on a sacrifice bunt by Scott Heylman. Popkins, hitting from the left side, got just enough wood on the ball to squeeze it between Perry and first base, eliciting a huge roar from the crowd that hadn't had much to cheer about for the first eight innings.

That was because Redding starter Brandon Andrieni dominated the Crabs for most of the afternoon. He only allowed one hit over the first seven innings. But Crabs starter John Austin and reliever Jesse Moore matched him zero for zero — with the help of some great defense, most notably a major-league caliber play from Heylman at shortstop in the fifth. Heylman ranged far into the hole to snag a grounder from Andrew Trepel and all in one motion leapt and threw across his body to first, ending the inning and leaving two Colt .45s stranded.

Sidewinder Derrick Dingeman came on in the ninth with the task of locking down the championship. Andrew Lassen hit a one-out single, but Dingeman induced pinch-hitter Matt Alton to ground into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.

The Crabs celebrated by spraying "Champagne" (Cook's sparkling cider) around on the field, and Crabs boardmember Randy "Banana Man" Robertson presented the team with a well-earned championship banner.

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