Find a League In Your Area
By Steve LaMontia, Director of Communications
Richard ‘Dick’ Prue is a 67 year old roofing contractor who is still
going strong in the business world while living in Pennsylvania and playing with
one of the most successful MSBL World Series entrants of all time. The Lehigh Valley Moondogs have been making the trip to Arizona since the early nineties under the guidance of long time MSBL veteran Turk Starniri. Dick has been involved with several teams since 1991 but the most successful has been Turk's Moondogs. For Dick's efforts and dedication to the World
Series, MSBL Founder and President Steve Sigler has inducted him into the 2017
class of the MSBL World Series Hall of Fame.
"We are primarily made up of players from our local league, where I have
been personally fortunate to have earned
a couple of MVP awards and one pitcher of the year honor, and that’s what makes
it so special,” explained Prue. "Yes, we
pick up a guy here and there but we have been able to win six rings over the
years and are very proud of that. There
were some years we have been 100% from the league.”
Dick has been married for 47 years to his sweetheart and biggest
supporter, Karen. Between all of Dick’s
baseball heroics, he and Karen have been able to produce a son and daughter and
eight grand children. "Karen has been by
my side at every World Series. That
makes me very happy.”
Dick’s pitching resume stands tall in Arizona, as he has amassed 19 wins
throughout the years. They won their
first championship in 2003, though by his own admission he was a middle of the
pack hurler by then after his 1997 surgery. "I never won a championship game as a pitcher. Some guys were just better, but I can still
look at the ring!”
Is there a special achievement that sticks out from the World
Series? After a moment or two of
silence, Dick thoughtfully explained, "It took us 12 years to win our first
championship and our first two years down there we were 0-6. That 2003 championship was in the 40-over
division. There are many wonderful
memories but the first championship has to be the highlight.” In 2017 Turk and the Moondogs will be trying for ring number seven as entrants in the 60-over and 65-over divisions.
Beyond all of the on-field accomplishments, has there been a personal
moment that stands out above the rest? This answer came much quicker. "We
were playing in 1994 and were playing at the Arizona State stadium and on our
team was Jon Furillo, Carl Furillo’s son,” started Prue. "Guys our age, of course, remember Carl from
the old Brooklyn Dodgers. Jon knew I was
a big Dodger fan and as I looked up in the stands I noticed a large guy
watching our game and asked him who it was. He said ‘It’s Joe Black’, who was a great pitcher for the Dodgers back
in he day.
"In 2012 Hurricane Sandy hit our area back home while we were in Arizona, which was certainly a tough time for the players and their families. As a team we concluded that we should finish the tournament but decided to offer a prayer after every game. It has become a tradition and something we continue to this day," said Prue.
Added Prue, "MSBL is a great
organization and I’m thankful that it’s a vehicle for old guys to continue to
play. Everybody says it but it’s
true. We wouldn’t have come every year
since 1991 if we didn’t appreciate their efforts.
Any time you get an award you are
appreciative of it but you think someone else is more worthy. Baseball is a team game and you don’t win
with just one player. So many people
have contributed to this honor. You need
all the pieces to gel and our players over the years have been the conduit that
has kept us together.’
Concluded Dick, "I want to thank the Lord for giving me the opportunity to
play baseball almost my whole life and without injury 'till the last several
years. He has given me a great life here and assurance for the life to come.
The personal relationships that have been developed through our MSBL teams have
grown into true friendships that I value greatly."