Today is Hamilton Joes Day! Team recognized for back-to-back championship wins

Hamilton City Council officially declares Aug. 11, 2022 as Champion Hamilton Joes Day

The Hamilton Joes were recognized at Wednesday’s Hamilton City Council meeting after the team won the second championship in a row in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate Baseball League.

“[The] Hamilton City Council and city administration would like to recognize the Hamilton Joes for their success and character after winning back-to-back Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League championships,” Hamilton Mayor Pat Moeller said.

The back-to-back champions were represented at the meeting by the team’s staff and the club founders Darrel and Jill Grissom, a married couple who have managed and operated the Joes since the team’s inception in 2008. Darrel, or “Coach Grissom,” spoke before the meeting’s audience.

“We have had over 50 kids drafted from the Joes in 14 years and five [of them] have played professionally on a Major League team,” Coach Grissom said. Brent Suter, a current pitcher for the Milwaukee Brewers, was with the Joes from 2009-10.

The Joes recorded 21 wins and 17 losses in the 2022 summer league and endured several late-season injuries before going 4 - 1 in the playoffs and defeating the Lima Locos 8 to 3 in the championship game at Foundation Field here in Hamilton in late July.

“When you get a chance to win on your home turf, it’s the first time we’ve done that. It’s more special to win at home, and we just wiped them out,” Coach Grissom said.

“That was a packed crowd,” Moeller said. “That was great to see, it was good for the program, and a lot of folks came down from Lima and they left unhappy.”

The Council officially proclaimed Aug. 11, 2022 as “Champion Hamilton Joes Day.”

Joes’ players are collegiate athletes from across the country that come to play in Hamilton during the collegiate offseason. Here, they stay with volunteer host families for two months.

“Host families are the backbone of our team, basically. Without them, we can’t have these kids come here and play. So, if anybody has an open bedroom, I’m looking for open bedrooms,” Coach Grissom said.

Coach Grissom said he could tell early on that there was an integral cohesion within the team. Individual performances on the team led to 11 Hamilton Joes to be selected for the league’s All Star Game.

“That’s normally what it takes if they want to stick around to the end of July and try to win a championship. These kids had what it took to do that,” Coach Grissom said.

“To win it all… I just haven’t got over it yet. We haven’t got over it. It was a great run, and we look to do a three-peat,” Coach Grissom said.

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