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Eric Peterson, Published July 03 2013

Summer has already been full of sparks

Before fireworks get set off tonight to mark the Fourth of July, here are some notable summer story lines, using fireworks terms as analogies

Bottle rocket

Minnesota Twins outfield prospect Byron Buxton

The 19-year-old Buxton is skyrocketing to the top of most Major League Baseball prospects boards with his performance this summer. The Twins drafted Buxton No. 2 overall in the 2012 MLB Draft, and he’s lived up to the billing to this point, being selected to this summer’s All-Star Futures Game. Fox Sports North even televised one of his minor league games with the Cedar Rapids Kernels.


Minnesota Twins opening-day starter Vance Worley

Worley was acquired in an offseason trade with the Philadelphia Phillies, but has fizzled with the Twins. The right-hander posted a 1-5 record with a 7.21 ERA in 10 starts before being sent down to Triple-A. Opponents were batting .381 against Worley before he was sent down to the minors.


Former North Dakota State javelin thrower Riley Dolezal

Dolezal exploded onto the national scene, winning the men’s javelin at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, which were recently held in Des Moines, Iowa. Dolezal won the event with a toss of 273 feet, 11 inches to beat his previous personal best by 30 feet, 5 inches. Dolezal, who is from Stanley, N.D., will represent the United States at the World Championships, which are set for June in Moscow.


Roger Maris Celebrity Golf Tournament

The event has burned bright for three decades, turning 30 years old this summer. In its previous 29 years, more than $1.7 million has been raised to benefit the Roger Maris Cancer Center, Shanley High School and Hospice of the Red River Valley. While Roger Maris (who hit 61 home runs in 1961) died in 1985 due to Hodgkin’s lymphoma, the tournament has endured. “To run this tournament for 30 years is incredible,” Roger Maris Jr. said at this year’s tournament.

Grand finale

Memphis Grizzlies head coach Dave Joerger

The former Minnesota State Moorhead and Concordia men’s basketball player recently ascended to the pinnacle of his profession, being named the head coach of the Memphis Grizzlies. The 39-year-old from Staples, Minn., started his professional coaching career in the International Basketball Association in Bismarck in 1997 as an assistant for the Dakota Wizards. He won five minor league titles as a head coach before joining the Memphis staff in 2007. Joerger was an assistant for the Grizzlies the past six seasons before he took over as head coach.