Town ball runs in the family for the Fritzes

Like a good glove, town ball just seems to fit for some families. In Cologne, that family has to be the Fritzes.

Brandon Fritz is back for his 15th season with Hollanders, playing on the field named for his grandfather Robert and on the same diamond where his father Bob earned Cologne's first trip to state back in 1972.

"My dad played baseball in town for four decades on the Hollanders team," said Fritz. "So my goal is that I play another eight years to be four decades as well. That's my ultimate goal, want to make sure I can match what my dad did. To say that I played just as long as him."

Brandon has already drawn even with dad in one aspect: Helping the Hollanders to a state tourney berth, a 47-year gap now bookended by the Fritz family.

"We went through a lot of tough years," said Brandon. "2019 was the turning point."

There is a lot of pride in Cologne for the Hollanders and there also is a lot of pride in the Fritz family as well.

"It's about the traditions you create, the stories you can tell from generation to generation," said Brandon. "My dad tells me stories all the time of them hanging out after the ballgames, and that's half the fun. You can compete with your opponent on the field, but after the game, you're best friends, and you're having a beverage or two with them. So it's just a lot of fun."