Doug Scopel Wins Minor League News (MLN) 2006 Ralphie Award as PR Director of the Year

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Doug Scopel of the Triple-A Pacific Coast League Nashville Sounds tops four of the best media relations directors and broadcasters selected for a Ralphie Award by the editors of Minor League News (MLN) (http://www.mlnsportszone.com) from over 700 professional sports teams in minor league and independent baseball, hockey, basketball and football. Carmen Molina of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays wins the major league Ralphie.

Media relations director Doug Scopel of the Nashville Sounds, a Triple-A club in the Pacific Coast League of Minor League Baseball (MiLB), topped the list as the editors of Minor League News (MLN) announced their selections for the 2006 MLN Ralphie Awards™.

The Ralphies are presented to the top media relations personnel and broadcasters selected from more than 800 people working at more than 700 professional sports clubs in minor league and independent baseball, hockey, basketball, and football. In addition, one major league media director is selected for their contributions to the minor league side of the game.

"The Ralphies represent a unique opportunity to showcase the exceptional people who drive the largest attendance increases year-over-year in professional sports," noted Brian Ross, senior editor of MLN Sports publications. "The media people working the minor side of the business don't get nearly enough respect for the work that they do. In our Ralphie picks the editorial staff tries to highlight the work of exceptional professionals who are pointing the way in media relations."

Ralphie awards were presented in five categories: PR Director of the Year, Major League Media Director, League Media Director, Broadcaster of the Year, and the "CHEWY" Rising Star Award.

Doug Scopel, the media relations director for the PCL Nashville Sounds was named as the PR Director of the Year, for his work in building a national media system for Triple-A baseball.

Jack Carnefix of the ECHL, a Class-AA professional hockey league, was selected as the League Media Director of the Year for the league's exceptional media system and for developing a centralized system on the internet for media outlets to grab PR materials.

Carmen Molina of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays was tapped as the Major League Media Director of the Year for her exceptional work at promoting the D-Rays minor league farm system players.

Mike Capps of the Round Rock Express, a Class AAA affiliate of the Houston Astros in the Pacific Coast League, was selected as Broadcaster of the Year for his many years filling the nights in the metro Austin, Texas area with great baseball.

Zack Bayrouty of the Stockton Ports in the Class A California League was awarded the "CHEWY" Rising Star Award, named in honor of Steve "Chewy" Cherwonak, the gifted VP of Media Relations for the Central Hockey League, for his work expanding the regional and national awareness of his ballclub.

The full article on this year's Ralphie Awards appears in this month's edition of MLN Sports Zone, a minor league news magazine online at:

http://www.minorleaguenews.com/features/articles2006/12/11/00.html.

Since 2000, Minor League News (MLN) has been the leader in minor league and independent sports news. In its eighth year, MLN Sports Group LLC now publishes the three leading four-sport publications in the minors. MLN Sports Zone (http://www.mlnsportszone.com) is the flagship magazine with original features and photography on minor league and indy sports; MLN - The Raw Feed (http://www.mlntherawfeed.com) was the first national RSS newswire for minor league sports. The MAJOR BLOGS of Minor League News (http://mlnsportszone.squarespace.com) serves up the first sports critics focused on the minor league beat.

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BRIAN ROSS
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