Calling it a career
Lincoln’s own Mike Reynolds realizing dream as general manager of the Lancaster Barnstormers, an Atlantic League club
Longtime Patriot linebacker Rob Ninkovich ended his 11-year career with the announcement of his retirement Sunday.
Mike Reynolds doesn’t know how or why, but he has a knack for landing on his feet in the sports business world. His new gig as general manager of the Lancaster Barnstormers’ baseball franchise, a minor-league organization within the Atlantic League, the largest such Independent League in the country, offers proof.
Following several jobs on the business side of WNBA and NBA Developmental League teams over the years, the Woonsocket native and Lincoln resident decided on a whim last fall to investigate and apply for the open GM position with the Pennsylvania-based Barnstormers.
“I sent them my resume, and it didn’t take long for them to respond,” explained Reynolds, who had just jumped in his vehicle to make the short trek from Clipper Magazine Stadium to the Atlantic League All-Star Game festivities in Somerset, N.J. “That night, I had a two-hour conversation with one of the owners, and it went very well.
“They invited me out three days later to show me around, and I interviewed with the ownership group and staff; I was really impressed with the setup,” he added. “Three days after that, I was offered the job, and I love it!
“I grew up playing baseball in Lincoln, so always liked the sport. It’s a different title than the one I had with the Reno Bighorns (Vice President of Sales and Marketing for the NBA Developmental League franchise in Nevada), but I have the same job responsibilities.
“I oversee the operations of the entire organization, the facilities, the front office and working with the coaching staff. I let the coaches do what they’re great at, mentoring the guys, handling the recruiting and the trades. If they want to sign a guy, they just do it. I help manage the salary cap.
“On the business side, my main goal is to turn this organization into a profitable one, and things right now are good. We’re having an incredible year on and off the field. The Atlantic League actually has two halves to the season and two divisions, the Freedom and the Liberty. We play in the Freedom, and we finished in a first-place tie with the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs.
“We had a makeup game scheduled against them last Friday (at this writing, the second half has already begun), and the winner will take the Freedom Division firsthalf championship and gain an automatic berth in the playoffs. We’ve also had seven
LONG POND, Pa. (AP) — Kyle Busch used a bump-and-run on Kevin Harvick to take the lead and held on to snap a 36-race losing streak and win the NASCAR Cup race at Pocono Raceway on Sunday.
Busch won for the first time this season in the No. 18 Toyota and won for the first time ever at Pocono. Busch had led more than 1,000 laps this season entering the race. He was racing for the lead last weekend in the Brickyard 400 when he wrecked with Martin Truex Jr., which led to a pit road altercation between members of both teams.
Busch won from the pole and gave Toyota its 100th Cup win since its 2007 debut.
Busch, the 2015 Cup champion, had never gone a full season without winning a race. Charlotte Motor Speedway is now the only track where he's failed to win.
"I never thought this day would happen," Busch said.
He also won his 176th career NASCAR race over the Cup, Xfinity and Truck series.
"We've all been fighting all year long and just wasn't sure why," Busch said. "This is something I've been waiting for for a long, long time. It's been a frustrating year but an awesome day today."
Harvick finished second, followed by Truex, Denny Hamlin and Brad Keselowski. Harvick, who hasn't won in 34 career races at Pocono, said he had nothing for Busch down the stretch.
"There was no battle. He was way faster than we were," Harvick said.
Busch had seven top-five finishes and was runner-up to Austin Dillon in the Coca-Cola 600. All the near misses have gnawed at Busch, who won the All-Star race. He won for the first time since the 2016 Brickyard 400.
Busch earned a spot in NASCAR's playoffs. There are just three open spots and five races left before the field is set.
Other items of note at Pocono:
THE BIG ONE
An eight-car wreck on the first lap knocked Aric Almirola and Matt DiBenedetto out of the race. Matt Kenseth got loose and spun to trigger the accident.
Almirola missed two months of the season with a fractured vertebra suffered in a race at Kansas.
"Sort of a bummer not to even make a whole lap," he said.
Jimmie Johnson wrecked and did not finish for the third time in the last four races. Johnson connected with Hendrick Motorsports teammate Kasey Kahne and was spun into the wall.
The seven-time Cup champion also crashed out of the first Pocono race in June.
NASCAR held qualifying before the race instead of earlier in the weekend. Pocono had no Cup cars on the track Friday during the condensed schedule. NASCAR will try the two-day show again next week at Watkins Glen and Oct. 29 at Martinsville.
"Just thankful for the opportunity to have the two-day shows," Busch said. "We love spending time with our families, and being on the road, that is sometimes difficult."
The series shifts to the road course at Watkins Glen. Denny Hamlin is the defending race winner.
Lincoln High School graduate Mike Reynolds is the new general manager of the Lancaster Barnstormers, an independent league baseball club based in Pennsylvania. Hired by the team last November, Reynolds’ list of responsibilities include overseeing the facility where the Atlantic League’s Barnstormers play their home games and managing the salary cap.