Arizona purchases Bums’ Omahen
TRAVERSE CITY — The Arizona Diamondbacks purchased the contract of Johnny Omahen, who led the Traverse City Beach Bums in strikeouts last season. The right-hander was 8-9 with a 3.36 ERA in his lone season with the Beach Bums of the independent Frontier League. He struck out 78 in 115 innings.
This will be his second stint with a major league organization. He was originally drafted in the 35th round in the 2011 draft by the Marlins. He pitched in the Gulf Coast League, Florida State League and South Atlantic League in his stay with the Marlins.
Bums sign Benedict, King
TRAVERSE CITY — The Traverse City Beach Bums signed utility player Rob Benedict and pitcher Nate King for the 2014 season.
Benedict, 23, who can play the outfield and infield, split time in the Atlantic League and Canadian-American Association last summer. He played college ball at Wesley College, where he was named the 2012 Capital Athletic Conference Player of the Year. He ranked among the career leaders at the school in several categories — first in stolen bases (103), third in runs scored (156), third in hits (208), fifth in doubles (35), fifth in triples (8), fifth in games played (153), ninth in batting average (.356), and 10th in runs batted in (101).
King, a lefthander, is expected to vie for a spot out of the bullpen. He spent last season with the Sand Rafael Pacifics of the Pacific Association of Professional Baseball Clubs. In 2012, he was 5-3 with a 2.24 earned run average at Catawba College.
VASA to offer junior races
TRAVERSE CITY — The 38th annual North American VASA Festival of cross country ski races will once again offer junior races for those ages 5-12 at Timber Ridge Resort.
Back for a seventh year, the junior races will include classic and freestyle skiing events of one or two loops on a special course. Skiers will be grouped by ages. Racers are not timed, but a large clock is running so skiers and parents can check times.All racers will receive a custom VASA medal at the finish line.
Junior VASA races are scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 8. At 12:30 pm, there will be a single fun loop event for those ages 5-7. That will be followed at 12:40 by a single fun loop event for ages 8-9. At 12:50, there will be a double fun loop for ages 10-12.
The registration fee is $5. Junior VASA registrations are available in advance on the VASA web site, www.vasa.org, and on race day beginning at 10 a.m. in the main lodge at Timber Ridge. Parents and children should arrive ready to ski and allow time to complete the registration and waiver forms and pick up skier race bibs.