New Germany Dutchmen amateur baseball
The New Germany Dutchmen amateur baseball team is a member of the Crow River Valley League, and has a strong tradition in the New Germany community.
In 2012, the Dutchmen had a very good season, finishing with a 7-13 record in the CRVL North Division.
New Germany took the Glencoe Brewers to three games in their best-of-three playoff series, but just missed advancing to the Region 7C Tournament. Glencoe beat the Dutchmen in the final game of the series.
Managing the Dutchmen in 2012 were league-veterans Jeff Kohls and Ron “Gus” Wischnack Jr.
Returning in 2012 to the line-up was long-time Dutchmen Tim Wischnack.
Fathers Day pork chop feed at New Germany
The Dutchmen host an annual Fathers Day pork chop dinner every year, and it has become one of the more popular baseball attractions during the summer.
A strong tradition
Baseball has been an important part of New Germany’s history since the early 1900s, and is to this day.
New Germany baseball legend Gerald “Beans” Roepke noted that in the early 1900s until 1955, baseball in New Germany was played in Fred Hein’s pasture, which is now Lindstrom Park.
In 1955, a new ballpark was built on District 77 school land, and dugouts and the grandstand were built with the help of volunteers.
In 1956, the New Germany city fathers organized a team, and with manager Harry Zellmann, joined the 7-Hi League, consisting of Excelsior, Hopkins, Hutchinson, Long Lake, Mound, Richfield, Winsted, and New Germany.
The ballpark was dedicated May 6, 1956. Later, the village of New Germany purchased the property.
Changes took place at the ballpark, and in 1970, the grandstand and dugouts were rebuilt.
In 1980, a chain link fence was installed and dedicated in memory of Dean Hensel, son of Loren and Dorothy Hensel, according to the New Germany Centennial Book.
In 1959, New Germany entered the Crow River Valley League with the teams of Glencoe, Green Isle, Hamburg, Lester Prairie, Mayer, Norwood, Plato, and Young America.
In this same year, the New Germany baseball team became known as the “Dutchmen” as its official name, by which it is still known today.
In 1987, the Crow River Valley League (CRVL) was split into two divisions, the North and the South. New Germany was placed in the North Division.
The Dutchmen were Crow River Valley League Champions in 1964, 1967, 1968, and 1971. In the past 15 years, the Dutchmen have been league champions aabout five more times, noted former manager and player Mike Schrupp.
The Dutchmen have made five state tournament appearances; 1967 in Alexandria, 1968 in Springfield, 1970 in St. Cloud, 1971 in Brownton, and most recently in 1997, when they beat Buckman 7-5 in the first game, and lost to Le Sueur, 4-3, in the second game.
In 1971, the Dutchmen had their best showing at state, placing third.
Hall of Famers
The New Germany Dutchmen have one member in the Minnesota Baseball Amateur Hall of Fame.
That member is Gerald “Beans” Roepke, inducted in 1993.
After 29 seasons of playing baseball, and before retiring from the Dutchmen, Roepke posted some impressive accomplishments.
In 1961 and 1980, he was voted the team’s most valuable player; in 1980, 1981, 1982, and 1986, he had the Dutchmen’s highest batting average; in 1981, he won the Crow River Valley League batting title, with a .446 batting average.
That same year, 1981, he was selected the most valuable player in the Crow River Valley League all-star game.
Beans continues to stay active in amateur baseball, currently serving as the Region 7C commissioner.
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