The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Other Sports

January 22, 2014

P-Rays manager set for symposium

Danny Sheaffer doesn’t have a specific message to convey when he speaks at this weekend’s coaches symposium at Upper Deck Training Center.

“I mainly want to be a resource for questions and answers in all aspects of the game, whether it’s offense or defense,” the Princeton Rays manager said Tuesday. “I want to share the experiences I had from over 30 years of professional basebal and try to aid amateur coaches from the state of West Virginia who might be there.”

Sheaffer will be one of several coaches and former players on hand at the four-day event that begins Friday.

Other speakers include Houston Astros pitching coach Brent Strom; Josh Newman, a former All-Big Ten pitcher at Ohio State and former Colorado Rockies hurler who was recently hired as pitching coach at Marshall; Jeremy Cummings, a Charleston native who pitched for Team USA’s bronze-medal winning team in 2008 and is currently in the Tampa Bay Rays organization; Blake Herring, pitching coach/recruiting coordinator at Carson-Newman; Steve Crosier, former batting coach for the West Virginia Miners who is now the strength and conditioning coach for the Princeton Rays; Miners assistant coach and former longtime Independence head coach Joe Goddard, who played for the Padres in the early 1970s; Danny Flores, head instructor at Upper Deck and Miners first base coach; and Miners manager Tim Epling, who worked as a minor league umpire for six years.

Sheaffer was a first-round draft pick of the Boston Red Sox out of Clemson in 1981. He played in the Major Leagues for parts of seven seasons with Boston, Cleveland, Colorado and St. Louis before retiring in 1997. The catcher was a .232 lifetime hitter and drove in 110 runs.

He eventually spent five seasons as manager of the Memphis Redbirds (St. Louis’ triple-A affiliate) and one as manager of the triple-A Round Rock Express (Texas).

Sheaffer was the minor league roving catching instructor for the Houston organization for six seasons before going to Princeton last summer.

“I was much more prepared for that level of baseball than I was when I stepped off the playing field at 38,” Sheaffer said of last season’s experience. “Baseball is important, but there are so many other things that go into rookie ball. Eventually you hope they become better citizens and not just better baseball players.”

Sheaffer, who lives in Mount Airy, N.C., in the offseason, was in Mercer County on Tuesday, helping with the baseball team at Concord. He’ll get another chance this weekend to run into acquaintances from 2013.

“To people who have not been there, it may not seem like the best place in the world, but I actually loved it,” Sheaffer said. “It’s close to my home. It will be fun to see people I am familiar with.”

The four days will be divided into two for players and parents and two for coaches.

Player and parent passes will be available for Friday and Monday for $25.

Saturday and Sunday are reserved for coaching clinics. Each day will end with a question-and-answer session. Fee for these days is $50 per coach.

Today is the last day to preregister at the discounted rate for the symposium. After today, the fee is $75.

“This clinic will be great for the high school player to be a part of,” Epling said. “It will give them a chance to get an idea of what to do to be better prepared for college, and they can have information for themselves. Plus, they will be able to meet college coaches across the state.”

For more information, call Epling at 304-673-2519. Information is also posted on the Upper Deck website,

— E-mail: and follow on Twitter @GaryFauber.

Text Only
Other Sports
  • Herd staffer completes Boston Marathon

    As Travis Epling watched the events of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings as they were unfolding, he couldn’t help feeling a connection.

    April 23, 2014

  • Beckleyan completes Boston Marathon

    Of the more than 32,000 people who ran in Monday’s Boston Marathon, 59 were from West Virginia.

    April 22, 2014

  • 042014 old white Happy birthday to The Old White

    As Greenbrier owner Jim Justice proudly stood behind the podium on the first tee box addressing a crowd at the 100th anniversary of the historic Old White TPC Course, a surprise guest emerged from the bushes by the tennis center.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 042014 bubba VIDEO: Watson becoming a West Virginian

    Greenbrier owner Jim Justice was glued to the television a week ago today, watching Bubba Watson try to chase down his second green jacket at Augusta National Golf Club.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 041914 old white Old White to celebrate 100 years

    The home of The Greenbrier Classic will be having a birthday today, and the celebration should be something special.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mullens, Pineville to meet in Anderson Memorial

    After many years away from the sideline, legendary Mullens High School coach Don Nuckols is returning to the game of basketball.

    April 19, 2014

  • 041914 D'Antoni Lakers mum on D’Antoni

    Mike D’Antoni was still the Los Angeles Lakers’ coach when he left their training complex to spend the Easter weekend out of town with his family.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • D’Antoni’s Lakers future still unclear

    With the Los Angeles Lakers season officially over — the Lakers beat the Spurs 113-100 Wednesday but finished 27-55 overall, the most losses in the club’s history and the franchise’s worst winning percentage since the Minneapolis Lakers in 1957-58 — Marshall fans will be keeping a close eye on what’s going on in Tinsel Town over the coming days.

    April 17, 2014

  • McClung moving from mound to dugout

    Seth McClung was getting his daughters Madison and Fallon inside and ready for their baths when his phone rang. He’s said before that he enjoys the role of “daddy day care.”

    April 15, 2014

  • First stop Waffle House; next stop The Greenbrier

    Bubba Watson decided to keep his post-Masters victory more low key this year. Instead of going to New York for a media tour, he headed home to Orlando, Fla., and kept plans for a five-day vacation with his wife.

    April 15, 2014