By Jake Jeffrey
Making the jump from junior hockey to the professional ranks isn’t exactly uncommon, but going from the rink to professional baseball certainly is.
It’s been an unconventional path to the pros for Darren Smale, head trainer and equipment manager for the St. Marys Lincolns. In the spring, he will join the Rocket City Trash Pandas as clubhouse manager for their inaugural season after attending spring training in Arizona with the team’s major league affiliate, the Los Angeles Angels.
To use Smale’s own words, he’s just “living the dream.”
Smale first joined the Lincolns’ junior hockey club about 15 years ago when he was a teenager, serving as an assistant equipment manager.