LEWISTOWN - Rebuilding is not the word that most Babe Ruth managers want to hear.
But for most of the teams in the Mifflin County Babe Ruth League, that is the main word in most camps this spring.
The 58th season for Mifflin County will start today with a five game slate.
Defending league champion Lewistown travels to Beaver Springs at 3 p.m., while Strodes Mills is at Burnham, also at 3. Two games are set to start at 4 p.m., Belltown at McVeytown and Belleville at Reedsville. At 7 p.m., Milroy hosts Yeagertown.
Each team will play 27 games and the regular season champion will be determined from those games. The Bob Reigle Memorial tournament will be played at the end of the regular season.
Lewistown has held a firm grip over the league title the last four years and it should be no different in 2012. Last spring, the West was picked third and still managed to win the league despite losing seven starters from the year before.
Beaver Springs doesn't rebuild, but just reloads. It did, however, lose its first two three-time All-Stars last summer. This will mark the Springs' fourth season since coming into the league in 2009.
The other contender will be Reedsville. Last season Reedsville was 13-14, but it only lost three 15-year-olds and only one of them was an All-Star.
The other seven teams will be in some form of a rebuilding stage. Yeagertown (20-6), McVeytown (15-11) and Belleville (15-12) all had winning seasons, but lost a total of sixteen 15-year-olds and are starting over.
The only new manager in the league is Justin Yoder in McVeytown. He, however, is not completely new as he was an assistant coach at McVeytown from 1997-2005.
Bill Corbin is back for his 30th year in Belleville as manager and he has an overall record (counting All-Star play) of 562-290. Yeagertown's Fred Zook will be in his 25th year with a record of 459-277.
Reedsville's Scott Reigle is starting his 15th season with a mark of 316-151, while Butch Bender also is starting his 15th year as a manager in the league at Belltown. Bender was a manager in Burnham from 1982-1986 and he has an overall record of 175-203.
Lewistown's Bernie Howard is now in his 13th year and his record is 328-86. Scott Wright starts his seventh year at Beaver Springs. Wright coached in Belltown in 1990 and 2001-2003 and he has an overall record of 80-56.
Milroy's Ted Rhoades begins his fifth campaign in Milroy (31-74), while Butch Larson, Strodes Mills (14-40) and Tom Heller, Burnham (17-19) are now into their third years in those respective towns.