Kim Nuxhall, right, and Doug Coates, author of "Pitching for Success: Character Lessons, The Joe Nuxhall Way," talk to students at Linden Elementary school in Hamilton, Wednesday, May 14, 2014. Coates in March 2020 published his second book, “Riley’s Winning Catch,” and portions of the proceeds will benefit the Joe Nuxhall Miracle League and the Down Syndrome Foundation. GREG LYNCH/FILE
Photo: Greg Lynch/File
Photo: Greg Lynch/File

Butler County author publishes second children’s book to help Miracle League

Doug Coates published his second book this spring — “Riley’s Winning Catch”— that highlights traits the late Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame pitcher and announcer Joe Nuxhall coveted: good character. 

Coates published his first book, “Pitching for Success: Charachter Lessons the Joe Nuxhall Way,” in March 2014. 

The idea of being an author wasn’t foreign to Coates, who had been working on other children’s books and have been shelved for the time being. But his editor, the late Coleen Armstrong, knew his involvement with the Joe Nuxhall Miracle League and convinced him to write a character education book.

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“Joe was big on getting into the classrooms and talking to the kids about their options about developing good character, and starting them off early as possible about making good decisions and wise decisions,” said Coates. “That just sprung an idea.” 

Both books address the importance of good character and sportsmanship through stories about baseball and softball.

Coates’ involvement began in 2012 when the Joe Nuxhall Miracle League field was under construction. When it was completed that year, he joined the board as its treasurer.

“I had never been exposed to activities for special needs children and adults,” said the former baseball and softball coach. “I saw there was a whole population of kids that couldn’t be on the local team, like my son and daughter were, yet they needed a place to play baseball.”

Before the first book, Coates had sat with Nuxhall’s son, Kim, who is the Miracle League’s volunteer executive director. For his latest book, he sat down with former Cincinnati Reds batboy and author Teddy Kramer and his family to talk about Down syndrome. 

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Coates is working on a third children’s character education series book, which could be out as early as next year.

Both books are available on Amazon and local book retailers, and personalized copies can be purchased from Coates by emailing him at

A portion of the sales from both books will go to the Joe Nuxhall Miracle League, and a portion of “Riley’s Winning Catch” will also go to the Down Syndrome Foundation.

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