APRIL 17, 1961: Ron Ramie tests the limits of Lanakila Field

Bob Matias, Ron Ramie, John Matias and Mike Lum all earned professional contracts in the same year.

For all aspiring baseball players who look over the expanses of Joey DeSa Field and imagine hitting a ball to the farthest reaches of center field, know this: Former Farrington star Ron Ramie has been there.

On this day in 1961, Ramie hit a 400-foot home run and John Matias added two more dingers as Farrington beat Kalani 12-2.

The Governors did the damage against Dick Watkins, who was one of the premier pitchers in the league and led the circuit in strikeouts. He fanned 10 Governors in the game, including seven in a row.

Ramie was a member of Farrington’s celebrated American Legion team in 1962, and his greatest value was with his glove in spacious center field. He went on to play pro ball but returned home after just two years. He played in local leagues for the next two decades.

Lanakila Park was built in 1934 and was the Ewa Beach Golf Course of its day, immaculately kept with a surface baseball players described as ‘velvet.’ Leagues from all over the city lined up to play there. It was renamed Joey DeSa Field in 1994 after the Damien and Puerto Rican League legend died in a car crash.


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