Bob Wease sells Harrisonburg Turks after 32 years of ownership
HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Bob Wease one of the Valley’s baseball legends is set to step away from the sport. On Wednesday, Wease announced that he had sold the Harrisonburg Turks of the Valley League, a team he has coached and operated since 1990.
“I’ve been in the Valley League since 1960 as a player, I played as a 15-year-old kid. I’ve been around 60 some years so I think maybe it’s time, I’m 79 years old now and my wife wants me to get out,” said Wease.
Wease and his wife Theresa, who he called the backbone of the Turks, have owned and operated the team for 32 years. In that time he has coached over 200 college baseball players who went on to make the pros.
“Guys like David Eckstein, the most valuable player in the world series, he played for me in ‘95. Juan Pierre, Jon Rauch, Mike Menichino, it just goes on and on,” said Wease.
Having been involved with the Valley League for over 60 years, Wease leaves behind quite an impact on both the Turks and the League as a whole.
“Bob and Theresa have been involved in the league a long long time and they’re going to be missed,” said Valley League Commissioner Robert Bowman. “I think what Bob brought to the league was stability, a pillar in the community, I don’t think he’s ever met a stranger.”
Wease sold the team to Gerald Harman, a lifelong Valley League fan who has worked as a recruiter and General Manager with several teams in the league since 2003, most recently with the Waynesboro Generals.
“It’s been a dream all my life when I got in the league to eventually step into the president/ownership role of a team. I’m really excited to have full control,” said Harman.
Harman said he and Wease talked about the deal during the summer and after the season ended they eventually hammered out a deal. Wease will coach the team for one final season in 2023.
“I’m looking forward to having him as my coach next year and just learning, seeing, and observing how Theresa and Bobby have run the Turks and made them one of the premier franchises not just in the Valley League but in summer college baseball nationwide,” said Harman.
As he prepares to coach his final season next summer Wease said he is really going to miss it.
“A piece of me has died but hopefully I’ll get it back after a while, but I know I’m going to miss the Turks and I think about it every night when I go to bed did I make the right decision? I pray to God that I did,” said Wease.
Wease said he’ll miss forming relationships with the players most of all.
“I’ve had guys call me up, and these are major league ballplayers, call me up and say ‘Bob I want to tell you, I want to thank you for the great summer you gave me in Harrisonburg and I was riding down 81 and I was thinking about you and wanted to call and say hello’ that means everything to you,” he said.
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