Bob Goughan Already Has Eight Championship Rings, But Another Would â€˜Mean a Lotâ€™ to Bridgeport GM
Bob Goughan is anything but a rookie in baseball even though this is his first season as general manager at Bridgeport, and even though he has eight previous championship rings it would have extra meaning if he could add one with the Bluefish.
â€œIt (championship) would mean a lotâ€, says Goughan, who is in an Independent league for the first time.Â For one thing, it would deliver what Owner Frank Boulton asked of the longtime baseball executive.Â â€œWhen Frank hired me, he said he wanted to see a quality team on the field.â€
General managers have lots of responsibilities with the primary one usually thought of as putting the organization in the black, which has been a problem in Bridgeport, one of only three franchises (Newark, Somerset) still active from the initial season in 1998.Â Â They are not always hands-on in daily player recruiting, though Goughan has been, working in tandem with Manager Willie Upshaw in building the Bluefish into a second-half power that put together a marvelous August (25-6) to sweep into first place in the Liberty Division and virtually lock up a postseason berth for the first time since 2006 and only the second time in the last nine years.
Goughan was a general manager for 25 years in Triple-A, 15 at Colorado Springs and 10 at Rochester, NY and he has overseen a number of other teams in dual-ownership situations.Â Goughan earned his eight previous championship rings between 1984 and 2000.Â He was assistant sports information director when Eastern Michigan won the California Bowl in â€™87.Â His seven baseball rings were with Little Falls, NY (New York-Penn League) in â€™84, Rochester in â€™88, Albuquerque in â€™90, Colorado Springs in â€™92 and â€™95 and as president and general manager of Idaho Falls in â€™98 and â€™00.
Boulton Sells Part of Ducks
I wonder how many people realize Frank Boulton sold a piece of the Long Island Ducks earlier this year to longtime friend Seth Waugh, who is CEO of Deutsche Bank Americas. Waughâ€™s involvement is not a secret since he shows up in the Ducksâ€™ yearbook.Â Â If there is more to this story it will have to be unearthed later.
Sparky Gets to 902 Wins, Trailing Only One Other Manager
Considerable attention was drawn earlier this week to Somersetâ€™s 900th franchise victory, in part because Sparky Lyle has been at the helm for the entire time.Â Perhaps more important is the fact the red-hot Patriots now have a four-game lead in the Freedom Division, the same margin they enjoy over Long Island should York rally in the last 17 days and require the wild card to come into play.
Lyle has managed more victories with one team than anyone else in the 18 years since Independent baseball started, but he has one remaining hurdle.Â Doug Simunic of Fargo, ND in the Northern League has a 976-902 lead over Lyle in total wins although the former New York Yankees closer is gaining ground year by year since the Atlantic League has a 140-game season, 40 more than the Northern.
(These are excerpts from the Atlantic League Notebook. Subscriptions to the full Notebook are available via www.AtlanticLeagueBaseball.com or www.WirzandAssociates.com.Â Bob Wirz also writes a weekly column, the Independent Baseball Insider, as well as a blog, www.IndyBaseballChatter.com. The author has 16 years of major league baseball public relations experience with Kansas City and as chief spokesman for two Commissioners and lives in Stratford, CT.)