Reno Celis was inducted to the 2013 class of the CNMI Sports Hall of Fame last night during the NMASA Annual Sports Banquet held at the Kanoa Resort.
Celis joined the prestigious group of Commonwealth athletes and officials for his consistent and outstanding plays in both baseball and softball for decades.
The Sablan Termites shortstop won was the Saipan Major League MVP in 1988 and 1989, the same years he led the league in batting average (.535 in 1988 and .465 in 1989) and triples, homers scored, and RBIs.
Celis, who also competed in track and field events with Mt. Carmel School in the 1960s, played in the SML for 16 seasons and has been competing in baseball tournaments for more than 30 years. In the 1980s and early 1990 SML seasons, he made it to the Top 10 of almost all statistical race, making him a marked man in every game at the Francisco “Tan Ko” Palacios Ballfield.
The 58-year-old Celis also joined slow- and fast-pitch softball leagues for three decades and notched various individual awards, including MVP citations.
“He is of the greatest baseball and softball players in the CNMI. He is respected in the CNMI sports community as an athlete, coach, and an official of both baseball and softball. His presence in any athletic contest was a sight to behold and he always makes athletes around him better,” NMASA Hall of Fame Special Committee chair Dr. Kurt Barnes said in his letter of nomination for Celis.