East End Park ball field renamed for Dave Fritz Sr.

The 2011 Tri-Cities Kids League season opened with a special ceremony at East End Park on Saturday morning. The ballpark was renamed the David L. Fritz Sr. Memorial Field in honor of longtime TCKL board member, coach and volunteer David Fritz Sr. Fritz Sr. passed away last August at the age of 82. Three of David Fritz Sr.'s five children - Mike, Cindy and Dave Jr., were in attendance, with Mike and Dave Jr. throwing out ceremonial first pitches before the Boys Instructional contest between the Knights and the Mudcats.
Matt DeYoung
Jun 7, 2011

 

“All the time Dad put in coaching, it’s fitting,” Dave Fritz Jr. said. “He was retired, but he was always there, always involved.”

“It’s really an honor. He’s smiling down on us right now,” Cindy Fritz added. “Dad always put the kids first.”

Mike Fritz recalled his early days of little league when games were played on the tannery field, not far from the current diamond at East End Park.

“All we had was wool uniforms, so Dad went out and got us all uniforms,” Mike said. “He was also instrumental in getting Tigers players to come out here.”

Unable to attend the ceremony were Bill Fritz, who now lives in Carsonville; and Teresa Fritz, who lives in Kalamazoo. David Fritz Sr.’s  wife, Joyce, preceded him in death in 2010.

According to TCKL board member Ken Baumgardner, a total of 70 teams are competing in baseball and softball this summer.

More than 850 youngsters make up those 70 teams.

Saturday, every league except T-ball kicked off its season at ballparks across the Tri-Cities.

 

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