Valley community remembers Valley Baseball League’s Bruce Alger

Many who knew Alger said the impact he made can be felt not just in the Valley Baseball League but throughout the Valley itself.
Published: Oct. 8, 2021 at 11:30 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 9, 2021 at 12:15 AM EDT
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SHENANDOAH COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) - Commissioner of the Valley Baseball League and president of the New Market Rebels baseball team Bruce Alger has died after his battle with cancer.

Many who knew Alger said the impact he made can be felt not just in the Valley Baseball League, but throughout the Valley.

“Everyone who came in contact with Bruce is going to always remember him for what a great guy he was, great friend. Everything about him was good,” Bob Wease, owner and coach of the Harrisonburg Turks said.

Bruce Alger spent many years leading the New Market Rebels organization.

Mike Bocock, coach of the Woodstock Riverbandits, began his coaching career with the team.

“When I think of New Market Rebels, I think of Bruce. He was the New Market Rebels,” Bocock said.

Alger could be heard over the PA system in the Rebels ballpark, and Bocock said Alger’s announcement of the number of people in attendance at games would bring smiles to the crowd.

In 2018, the Rebels won the league championship against the Charlottesville Tom Sox. Zac Cole, current coach of the Waynesboro Generals, was head coach of the Rebels at the time.

Cole said Alger’s confidence in the team in the years prior helped them reach that goal.

“I don’t think I can think of anyone that cared about the league and their team and honestly all the teams in the league more than Bruce,” Cole said.

As commissioner of the league, Wease said Alger was a fair and strong leader.

“Bruce was a very, very good listener. No matter what the problem was. He would listen to you and try to work it out,” Wease said.

Many said Alger has left big shoes to fill.

“He was a great human being. A good person for our league. A good leader for the Valley Baseball League. That is going to be a hard position to fill,” Steve Cox, general manager of the Staunton Braves, said.

Off the baseball field, Alger’s passion for the community could be seen by the list of organizations he was a part of, and those who knew him to add that he was a family man.

“It was mind-boggling. I’m not sure there is a civic organization in New Market that he didn’t belong to. Not only did he belong to the organizations, but he worked hard in them,” Jay Neal, executive vice president of the league and president of the Strasburg Express, said. “I don’t know when the guy slept. He was an amazing man.”

Wease said Alger will be missed in the Rebels ballpark, but his presence will still be felt.

“I just think that every time we go to Rebel Park, Bruce is going to be on our minds,” Wease said.

George Laase, head coach of the Strasburg Express, said there will never be another person like Alger.

“The Shenandoah Valley didn’t just lose a commissioner/owner, we all lost an amazing friend. There will never be another Bruce Alger,” Laase said.

Funeral arrangements will be held in the coming days. For more information, click here.

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