The 2017 season marks coach Bob Wease’s 27th year as President and General Manager of the Turks and his 16th as Head Coach. Over that span, Wease has compiled a record of 423-248 and a winning percentage of .630%. The 2016 Turks finished with a record of 27-17. The Turk have won the VBL pennant four out of the last five years and ranked nationally by Perfect Game; 4th in the country in 2011, 12th in 2012 and 7th in 2013. Wease played collegiate baseball and football at Shenandoah University before transferring to James Madison University where he played baseball under the legendary coach Brad Babcock. His baseball career also included playing in the U.S. Army, the local Rockingham County League, and in the Valley Baseball League.
Wease was inducted into the Rockingham County Baseball League Hall of Fame, Class of 2013. As the youngest player ever in the RCBL at 13, Wease played for the Linville Patriots in 1958 until age 16. Wease then began his 7 year VBL career in 1961 for the Harrisonburg Turks, then with New Market Rebels in 1962-63. He didn’t play in 1964 due to a broken leg. Played in the US Army 1965-66. He was back in New Market in 1967, Harrisonburg in 1968 and with the Shenandoah Indians in 1969. He then returned back to the RCBL and played from 1970 to 1994 for numerous teams; Twin County, Grottoes, Linville, and Harrisonburg. He also managed the Linville Patriots and the Harrisonburg Chics, winning several championships. In 2016 Wease was inducted into the inaugural year of the Valley Baseball League Hall of Fame as a player, an honor that Wease is very proud of.
Coach Wease resides in Harrisonburg where he has owned Wease Auto Exchange for 40 years. He is married to Teresa Wease. Together the couple have worked tirelessly to build the Turks into a first class organization that the Harrisonburg – Rockingham County communities can be proud of and fans of all ages can enjoy. The couple has five children and nine grandchildren.
Eric Nieslen joins the 2017 coaching staff as the Turks Pitching Coach. Nielsen has been a member of the Wake Forest coaching staff as a Student Assistant for the 2017 season while he completes his degree in Communications. With aspirations to become a collegiate pitching coach, Niesen has assisted the Wake Forest pitching staff and served as the bullpen coach.
A third-round draft pick of the New York Mets in 2007, Niesen had a 10-year professional career, reaching as high as AAA while playing in the Mets, Mariners and Red Sox organizations, as well as independent ball. In the minor leagues from 2007-13, Niesen pitched in more than 150 games and won 21 games along with a 4.51 ERA. He spent parts of five seasons in the Atlantic League, and had a 0.93 ERA with the Bridgeport Bluefish in 2015, his last full season.
The New Boston, Michigan native stepped away during the 2016 season to be with his wife, Tina, as the couple had their first son, Gideon.
A three-year letterwinner at Wake Forest, Niesen led the pitching staff his junior campaign with a 6-5 record and 3.00 ERA in 84.0 innings, totaling 83 strikeouts. He finished his career with a 14-9 record from 2005-07.
Bench Coach Mark Klosinski is in his 10th year with the Turks organization. He lives in Harrisonburg and is employed by Rockingham County Schools. He enjoys and appreciates the chance to work with the young ballplayers who play for the Turks and who continue challenging him to keep up with them!
In his spare time Klosinski is an avid runner, and enjoys hiking and biking.
Coach Klosinski resides in Harrisonburg. He is married to Lisa Klosinski. The couple has a son Kyle, daughter Greta and son-in-law Chase and granddog Ellie.
Nic Love joins the 2017 Turks coaching staff as an assistant coach. Love concluded his playing career at nearby Eastern Mennonite University. He played two years at Patrick Henry Community College before finishing his eligibility at EMU. Love’s leadership abilities were noticed quickly, as he was named a team captain in two years of college ball. Love was also on the Dean’s List during his playing days. He recently completed his first year as an assistant coach at Eastern Mennonite. Coach Love is Virginia born and raised, hailing from Bedford, VA., before coming to Harrisonburg.
Assistant Coach Ryan Tierney
Ryan Tierney was a four year letter winner at Eastern Mennonite University as a pitcher and has just finished his first season as a coach at his alma mater. Tierney is familiar with the Valley Baseball League, as he grew up in Front Royal and watched
the Cardinals. The Turks welcomes Coach Tierney in his first season with Harrisonburg.