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Pitching Leads Adult Quakertown Panthers to Victory
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer
2020-07-29

            Tim Simkiss utilized a yoga session Tuesday to work out the soreness from his last outing. On Thursday, he will throw his weekly bullpen session against a brick wall.

Michael Marchand, left, and Steve Kolowicz converge

on a fly-ball during Quakertown's win Sundat.

Simkiss, a 45-year-old CPA, says he's throwing overhand for the first time in years.

            "I feel stronger than ever," he said.

            Last weekend, Simkiss and Mike Kreider pitched Quakertown to a 5-1 victory over the Schwenksville Indians in the Mid-Atlantic Division of the Bux-Mont MSBL Baseball League. Simkiss made the start, allowing just one run over five innings. Kreider tossed four shutout innings in relief to post the victory at the Central Perk Complex in Limerick Township.

            Chris Motts' RBI single in the top of the seventh inning snapped a 1-1 tie and highlighted a two-run rally. Michael Marchand's two-run single in the top of the eighth inning capped the scoring for the Panthers (3-1), who notched their third straight victory.

            The team, in its third season, plays every weekend against teams from Hilltown, Reading, Pottstown, Perkasie, Harleysville, West Rockhill and Warrington. Its 18-man roster includes eight players who played at Quakertown High School or in upper Bucks County, and 13 returning players, according to player/manager John Meyers.

            The Panthers, who are scheduled to host the Pottstown Pirates at 9 a.m. on Sunday, have a mix of players who competed in college and those who didn't play beyond high school. Meyers hadn't played since graduating from Quakertown Community High School in 1995 when he joined the team a few years ago.

            "This team is very competitive," said Simkiss, who pointed out that pitchers and catchers begin indoor workouts each January. "It's fun to get out here and compete, but winning makes it more fun."

            Simkiss, who lives in Plymouth Meeting, allowed just one run the second inning. The right-hander says he feels strong enough to pound the strike zone, rather than nibble around the edge.

            "The strike zone seemed a little tight," Simkiss said. "But I battled."

            The pitcher, who graduated from Archbishop Wood High School in the early 1990s, pitched briefly at Philadelphia Textile. A torn labrum in his throwing shoulder ended his career.

            However, Simkiss couldn't give up the game. Beginning in 2011, he competed in Greater Philadelphia Men's Adult Baseball League after reinventing himself as a "junkballer."

            Kreider, a lefthander, registered seven strikeouts to earn the mound victory. The Hatfield native, and 1988 graduate of Upper Bucks Christian School, played four years at Liberty University, but could not give up the game.

            "I love it," said Kreider, who lives in Quakertown and works as a support assistant at Merck and Co., Inc.

            During his first two seasons with the Flames, he worked out of the bullpen as a left-handed specialist. Kreider became their regular centerfielder during his final two seasons.

"Playing every day was much more fun," he said.

            As a senior at Liberty, Kreider was named the team's most valuable player. He batted .346, led the team with 66 hits and notched 35 RBI.  Despite attending a few major league tryouts and speaking with scouts, Kreider never signed a professional contract. However, he never stopped playing.

            Kreider spent 15 years competing for the Souderton Warriors in the Perkiomen Valley Twilight League. He has made multiple appearances in the Roy Hobbs World Series, an annual adult league tournament held each fall in Fort Myers, FL.


 

 

 

 

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