— Official ULB (@ULB_Commish) March 1, 2015
June 22, 2010, History is made in Jersey City as Kenneth "The Punisher" Payne belts Home Run #700 in an 8-4 Phoenix Fire win!
— Official ULB (@ULB_Commish) November 24, 2014
Columbus Crickets outfielder Juan Pierre is known for stealing bases. Back in July, it was reported that Pierre had injured himself chopping wood at his home in Columbus. Pierre’s wife, Liz Pierre, was in California on vacation at the time. Now, facts have come to light that Pierre’s innocent wood chopping induced back injury might have not been the truth.
Pierre signed with the Eagles this offseason, and has been an excellent addition to the Charlotte franchise. Pierre was selected to the All Star Game, and has hit .283 with 132 hits. He has stolen bases for the Eagles, and is among the team’s best hitters.
Pierre has been linked to a stripper at Kahoots Gentlemen’s Club in Columbus. Pierre has frequented the club in the past with other members of the Charlotte Eagles while on road trips to play the Columbus Crickets. Pierre and his BMW, with the ultra stealthy license plate BRN2SB, was photographed outside the Columbus Hilton, as was his gal pal, who goes by the ironic stripper name of Chastity.
“I find this hard to believe. Juan has been one of the more upstanding members of this clubhouse. I think maybe there’s more to it that we haven’t heard. I stand with my teammate and friend.” said fellow Eagles outfielder Ken Griffey Jr.
Pierre has declined to comment, as has Eagles owner Michael Jordan. General Manager Kevin Parlett expressed support for Pierre outside the Eagles offices.
“I support Juan, on and off the field.”
Liz Pierre declined to comment on the story as she threw Pierre’s record collection out the window of their mansion.
Ken Payne hit Home Run #500 today against San Jose’s Brad Busbin in a 4-0 win over the Jedi at Skywalker Stadium. Payne accounted for all 4 runs. Payne went yard with number 499 off Nelson Gil Santovenia in the 7th inning to put the fire up 1-0. He came up later in the ninth with 2 runners on base. The Phoenix Star was greeted with a mixture of cheers and boos as he came to the plate with Ntema Ndungidi on 2nd and Jody Gerut on first after an intentional walk. Busbin missed wide outside on his first pitch, but the second one was right in Payne’s wheelhouse. And as he had done 499 times before, Payne crushed it, sending the ball 447 feet into the outfield for a 3 run home run. Payne’s teammates mobbed him at the plate as he made his 500th round tripper of his ULB Career. The San Jose fans, despite the crushing blow Payne had dealt their club, joined the large contingent of Phoenix fans who had made the trip to try to see history.
“It’s Unbelievable. I never thought I would be standing here, talking about this. I started out playing Independent minor league baseball, and now… Wow. Surreal. Just totally surreal.”
Busbin, now forever in the record books as giving up the Historical dinger, was nonchalant about his place in history.
“They’ll remember the homer, but hopefully, they don’t remember who threw the pitch.”
ULB Commissioner Steve Greenberg presented Payne with a plaque commemorating the event after the game and praised Payne for being a mainstay in the ULB. Payne’s Uniform and Bat were taken to be sent to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.
“Hopefully, he hits many more here in the ULB. He’s a class act, and now, he joins the greats. But not only that, he becomes the first in a new line of greats who will in time emerge as we move forward here in the ULB.”
Ken ‘The Punisher’ Payne is now 3 home runs away from becoming the first player to hit 500 home runs in the ULB. While some players have become members of the 500 HR club while playing in both the ULB and the MLB, none have as of yet made it this far while playing solely for Union League Baseball. Payne, in fact, leads all players currently playing in the ULB in HR. He hit 261 of his dingers as a member of the Hollywood Stars from 1995-2000 before joining the Phoenix Fire in 2001, where he has hit 232 out of the park.
Frank Thomas is close to becoming a member of the MLB/ULB 500 HR club, sitting at 495. He recently hit number 248 in the ULB, surpassing his 247 home runs in the MLB. The next closest members are Ken Griffey Jr, who is playing in the first season in the ULB. He has 458, though just a mere 17 in the ULB. Jim Thome is next on the list with 415 home runs to his name. All but 57 came as a member of a Union League Baseball ball club. His 358 home runs ranks 2nd in the history of Union League Baseball. Wayne Edwards (341), Manno Wickey (317) and Ryan Keith (316) round out the top five. Salt Lake City’s Bobby Abreu should soon join the members of the 300 HR club, as he sits at 296 for his career.
The list shows that getting to 500 home runs in the ULB isn’t as easy as it sounds. Wayne Edwards entered the league in 1997, while Thome, Wickey, Keith and Abreu have all been members since 1996. Payne was here from the beginning in 1995. His level of consistency has been astounding, in 7 of his 11 seasons thus far, he played in every game.
The Punisher’s 11 year assault on pitchers could very well end, as he has a option allowin him to test the free agent market after this season, should he choose not to settle for a mere 14.5 million next season. One can only hope that if he does choose to leave Phoenix for greener pastures, that he continues to play in the ULB.
Jason Harrison has exploded for 10 HR in the early part of the season, leading him to declare that he is the best hitter in the ULB. “Yeah, of course I’m better than Payne and Edwards. Those guys can’t hold my jock.”
Harrison says that he has been overlooked because of the fact that he plays in Columbus and not a market like New York, or in the case of Payne, formerly Los Angeles.
“People overlooked me because I’m not MJ. Well, this year, MJ, he’s gone. Couldn’t play anymore anyway. I’m the next big thing here in Columbus. When I’m done here, people won’t even remember Jordan.”
When Asked about Harrison’s comments, last season’s HR champ Ken Payne reportedly responded. “Wait, isn’t he hitting like .199?”
Reports have surfaced that Hollywood Stars Outfielder Orestes Kindelan may have asked management for a trade to a contender. One of the early Stars of the ULB, Kindelan was the 1st overall pick in the 1995 Inaugural Draft. Injuries have limited him to limited playing time in the last few seasons, but the Cuban slugger is still one of the bigger stars in the ULB, and his jersey still ranks among the top sellers in the league. He has 210 career home runs, and a lifetime .31t batting average.
“I still think I can provide a team with a chance to win everyday.”
Kindelan would likely be used as a DH by any team that would be interested, and he has lost a few steps in the outfield. He could also play First Base is called upon. He has reportedly passed through waivers, and has been designated by the team for assignment. He has told the Stars he would refuse an assignment to the minors, leaving them with little choice but to trade him, release him, or put him back on the Main Roster.
The Columbus Crickets came back after an embarassing performance in Game 1 to defeat the Jedi 3-2 last night. A 3 Run HR by J.D. Drew was all the offense Kerry Wood needed to get through 8 innings. The Jedi did mount a comeback in the 4th inning, but the 2 run HR by Thurston Rockmore was all the offense Wood allowed.
If not for an error by Jim Thome in the 1st inning that allowed Jun Yamada to reach base, Kevin Gordon’s stat sheet might not record a loss. The error was followed by a single by A.J. Pierzynski that put runners on 1st and 3rd. Then after Drew fouled a ball off on the first 3-2 count, he hit the next pitch deep to right near the foul pole. The pitch was just inside the pole, and was ruled a Home Run. Gordon settled down after that, but the Jedi couldn’t manage to get to Wood, despite Rochmore’s own shot.
The Crickets will send Ramiro Mendoza to the mound for Game 3 in San Jose, while the Jedi will counter with B.J. Wallace in a matchup of 20 game winners that should prove exciting.
The ULB Award Season is now upon us. Please take a moment to go and vote!
Kenneth Payne hit #300 this week against the Brooklyn Bridges. The homer came against Stephan Defranco, who despite giving up the historic homer, managed to get the Win in the game as the Fire fell by a score of 8-2. Payne’s 4th inning homer went 408 feet and landed in the Right Field stands, where a near riot broke out over the ball.
James Harrison of the Crickets also set a record, as he broke Wayne Edwards’ Single Season Home Run record set back in 1999. Harrison then refered to Edwards as one of the all time greats, and repeated acted as if Edwards played back in the 1940’s instead of for their Division Rivals the Brooklyn Bridges.