Ohio MSBL Pioneer Skip Riser Passes Away at 77

Submitted by Joe Sidor, Ohio MSBL League President

We are sad to learn of the passing of our teammate, opponent, and friend Skip Riser.  Skip was one of the founders of the Ohio MSBL.  He handled the finances and registrations for most of the first 12 years of the league’s existence and was inducted into the national MSBL National Hall of Fame in 2018

Here is an excerpt from Skip’s obituary: Age 77, of Canton, passed away at home surrounded by his loved ones Monday, Feb. 28, 2022.  He was born Dec. 23, 1944 in Allegheny County, PA, a son of the late Roy and Carrie (Hobson) Riser, and had been a Canton resident most of his life.  Skip was a 1962 graduate of Lehman High School where he played baseball with Thurman Munson.  He was retired from First Energy after 10 years as a computer operator, and previously worked for Republic Steel 35 years.  He never complained about his eleven-year battle with Parkinson’s Disease.  He especially loved his feline rescues.  Skip has loved baseball his entire life, and then started playing on the Canton Masters, a 50-over team. (Read more)

I’m sure everyone knows about Skip’s baseball accomplishments, all well deserved.  But the thing I will remember most about Skip was his kindness. I can’t remember a single incident in the years I have known him when he was mean or unkind to anyone. He was a competitor on the ballfield. But without fail, he would turn to me from the mound around the sixth or seventh inning and ask…”where are we going to go after the game for a beer?”. Those times with his friends and teammates were the real joy in the sport for him.

Also, any stray animal that ended up at our Stadium found a home with Skip. He and his wife Jane rescued countless lost kittens. One of our duties every morning before cutting the field grass was to fill all the food bowls we had placed around the grounds for Skip’s rescues.  I am so glad to have known Skip, and I will miss him.

Skip also had a long history playing in the MSBL World Series. “I have played throughout the years with the 60-over and the 65-over Ohio Classics,” explained Skip.  “My personal highlight is winning the 2012 MSBL World Series in Arizona. That was special and something I’ll never forget.”

Skip has grown this remarkable league to 26 teams in five divisions and into one of the premier leagues in the country.

The following link is a great write-up from Skip’s 2018 MSBL National Hall of Fame induction story: