American Legion ball
Published 12:00 am Friday, July 14, 2000
pioneer still loves game
By JAINE TREADWELL
July 13, 2000 10 PM
Although W. B. Jinright never played "team" baseball, the game has been an important part of this life because his sons, Terry and Jerry, and grandsons Russ and Ross made it that way.
"My sons were very athletic and they liked to play all kinds of sports," Jinright said. "I got interested in sports because of them and baseball was my favorite. It’s a good game and the boys learn a lot from playing it. I thought it was important for every boy that what wanted to play to get a chance."
As a member of American Legion Post No. 70 in Troy, Jinright worked diligently with the American Legion Baseball League on the local and state levels.
"Ron Pierce has to get the credit for getting the league started, I just helped keep it going," Jinright said.
Jinright served on the state committee of the American Legion Baseball League for 10 years and helped to promote it in the far corners of the Alabama.
At one time, American Legion baseball was the best game going for young men outside of high school baseball programs and it even rivaled many of them.
Jinright said he is proud and appreciative of the role American Legion Post No. 70 played in offering "America’s favorite pastime" to so any young men over the years.
"I believe they learned a lot from baseball and they’re probably better men because of the things they learned," Jinright said.
Because he never played organized baseball, Jinright said he has to give the credit for the success of his sons and grandsons in the game to the outstanding coaches they had and the outstanding leagues in which they played.
"And, the American Legion was one of the best," he said.
"When I was growing up, we played baseball with a rolled up sock and our bat was a panel we pulled off the fence," Jinright said, laughing. "The bases were rocks, bushes or anything else we could find. I might have been pretty good myself If I’d had a real ball and bat."
Jinright never got an opportunity to see how good he might have been but through his leadership, that opportunity has been available to many young men over the years. He feels good about that.
"And, I’m proud the see the American Legion team back on the field," he said. "For a while, we didn’t have a team but about three years ago, it was reorganized and I’m glad to see it. It’s a good game – baseball."