The Reading Phillies had one of the best winning records at home in 2012, and it turns out they played on one of the best fields in baseball.
Dan Douglas, the Fightin Phils' head groundskeeper for the past 22 years, has been named the Sports Turf Manager of the Year at the Double-A level. The award is sponsored by the Sports Turf Managers Association.
Douglas, who will accept the award at the Baseball Winter Meetings awards luncheon in Nashville, Tenn., on Mon., Dec. 3, made it known that he didn't earn it on his own. He recognized his staff of Jason Boone, Dan Carl, Jeff Cuthbertson, Michael Gurcsik, Jake Leadbetter, Edward Harbaugh, Jonathan Raymond, Jeffrey Reigner, Todd Reinert, and Raymond Werts for their care and maintenance of the FirstEnergy Stadium field in 2012.
"This award confirms the dedication and resilience of the grounds crew," Douglas said. "I’m proud of the way the crew fought through challenging weather conditions and unique extra events to consistently provide a quality playing surface."
Douglas was recognized with the same award in 2009. He has also won the Eastern League Diamond Pro Sports Field Manager of the Year in 1993, 1997, 2000, 2009 and 2012.
In 2001, Douglas received the Harry C. Gill Award from the Sports Turf Managers Association, which is the organization’s highest honor.