Bonadonna calling it quits on summer league?

The Duluth News Tribune has a rather unfortunate news item regarding Illini secondbaseman Joe Bonadonna who was stationed up in the Minnesota town to play for the Duluth Huskies in the Northwoods League. 

The upshot of the story:  Bonadonna was so disappointed about not being selected in last week’s baseball draft that he signed his release waiver from the Huskies. 

Apparently, his coaches told him to sleep on it but Bonadonna was adamant. 

Bonadonna has been with the Duluth Huskies for four years.  Not only has been one their best players having broken a few team career records but arguably has been one of their most popular.  It was with the Huskies last summer when Bonadonna caught fire.  He won multiple NWL awards that season.  He never slowed down when he came back to the University of Illinois when he had a breakout year in the Big Ten.

Bonadonna already regrets his decision. 

“I definitely wish I would have been made inactive for a couple weeks to clear my mind, but I wasn’t thinking anything about that at the time,” Bonadonna said. “Now I can’t come back, and that’s too bad because I already miss the guys.”

Unfortunately, there’s not a lot that can be done.  According to league rules, once the waiver is signed and turned in,  Bonadonna cannot return to play for the Huskies for this season. 

“Once that waiver gets sent to the league office, the wheels have already been put into motion,” (Duluth Huskies GM Craig) Smith said. “You can’t just make a phone call and make it go away. Some wars you fight and some you don’t. We’d love to have Joe here, but we don’t want to ask the league president to make a decision that likely wouldn’t go our way anyway. The rules are the rules and we’re going to live by the decision Joe made.”

Bonadonna made a rash decision and he will have to pay for it, there’s no doubt about it.  Joe’s been one of my favorite players and I have no doubt that somehow he’ll get back on his feet and get on track.  He’s too good of a ballplayer. 

I’m two states away and don’t know all of the details.  That said, it’s my feeling that the Huskies’ management could have taken his signed release waiver and sat on it until Bonadonna was thinking straight.  Then just tore it up. 

Good luck to Joey B. 

Thanks to Andrew from Summer Ball for pointing me to the story. 

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