Volunteers from Hamptons Collegiate Baseball (HCB), the East End division of the summer-time NCAA-sanctioned Atlantic Collegiate Baseball League, have begun a renovation of the baseball diamond in Mashashimuet Park.
Over the next few weeks the infield grass and the field dirt will be revamped, the work leaving the Pierson High School teams, community members and the HCB Sag Harbor Whalers and their opponents with a NCAA-caliber diamond to play on come spring.
Rusty Leaver, president and organizer of the HCB, estimates the value of the renovation at $25,000, proudly reporting, “The field improvements will be provided at no cost to the village or park boards. The operation began last Sunday with a targeted completion date of November 1.” The infield will be closed to play until next March.
The work is being overseen by Jeff Standish, general manager of HCB’s North Fork Ospreys and deputy director of public works in the Town of Southold. Leaver contacted the Sag Harbor Village Board and found support from people involved in other local projects, including Lenny Delalio of Delalio Sod, John Tintle of East Coast Mines and Harlin Foley of Foley’s Lawn Care.
“The field renovation is a true community effort,” added Leaver. “It’s people like these who donate their time, expertise and hard work that help make Hamptons Collegiate Baseball the organization it has become.”
Tom Gleeson and Sandi Kruel, the Whaler co-general managers, coordinated support for the project in Sag Harbor, coordinating communication between the volunteers, the park board, park maintenance director Joe Burns, Pierson athletic director Montgomery Granger and varsity baseball coach Jonathan Tortorella.
The Mashashimuet Park field renovation is the latest instance of HCB improving baseball facilities on the East End. The organization, which has found major sponsorship from Norsic & Son, Bridgehampton National Bank and the Hampton Jitney, has upgraded Westhampton’s Hite Field and the Mattituck High School field and also constructed a new ballfield at Stony Brook Southampton.
According to both Kruel and Leaver, HCB is awaiting a New York State grant to make further improvements to the fields in all five HCB communities: Mattituck, Riverhead, Southampton, Southold and Sag Harbor.