Tag Archive | "baseball"

Whalers Win a Close One, On Track With 2-1 Victory

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By Benito Vila

“A win’s a win, no matter how it comes,” said Pierson varsity baseball coach Sean Crowley as his Whalers gathered after shaking hands with Stony Brook in Mashashimuet Park Tuesday. There was great relief in those words, Coach Crowley seeing Pierson pitchers battle out of bases-loaded jams in the both the sixth and seventh innings to send the Bears back home with a 2-1 loss.

The Pierson win was far more important than the final score, the boys having lost a league contest to Mercy on Thursday, knowing league- leaders Center Moriches, Port Jefferson and Southold are soon on the schedule. That loss makes it necessary that the boys win all of their match-ups with Stony Brook and Smithtown Christian and at least two more from the top of the league if they are to qualify for the county tournament.

It may seem a little early to think about the end of the season already with so much of the schedule remaining and the Whalers sporting a 3-1 league mark going into last night’s game at Stony Brook, but no one seems to be saying that to the opposition. Each of the three games this week has had a playoff-like intensity, Pierson winning two and losing one, each contest ending with the tying or go- ahead runs on base.

On Tuesday the Center Moriches Red Devils will likely come into the park undefeated, providing the toughest early season test yet for this year’s Whalers. The Red Devils’ series is due to continue Wednesday in Center Moriches and then come back to the park next Friday, each of the games starting at 4:30 p.m. The Stony Brook rain out Monday will be made up April 20, giving Pierson more four tough league games before non-league contests with Hampton Bays and East Hampton take them into the Port Jefferson series.

“Earned” Runs

The 2-1 Whaler win Tuesday was the kind of game coaches and players work hard in practice to avoid, but find themselves in all too often.

Both Whaler runs went into the scorebook as being unearned–that is following an error–but the Pierson runners certainly seemed to have earned their way around to score.

The first Whaler run came in the bottom of the first, lead-off batter Casey Crowley alertly taking advantage of a dropped third strike in beating the throw to first. With Gavin Kudlak at the plate, Crowley stole second and then came into score when Kudlak singled to center.

Good pitching and defense, aided by some lackluster baserunning, kept the Whalers from scoring again until the fifth. Then, with one out, Jimmy Fusco drew a walk with Dane Riva coming in to pinch run. Riva stole second and advanced to third when Crowley knocked a ground ball to the right side, scampering home on a wild pitch during a Kudlak at-bat.

The Whalers had opportunities in other innings, leaving runners at third three times, but Bear pitcher Brian Harrington held them off, scattering three hits and four walks around eight strikeouts. Pierson starting pitcher Joe Mascali matched those totals in his six innings, and kept himself out of trouble until the sixth when a bases-loaded walk forced in Stony Brook’s run and cut the Whaler lead in half.

That walk prompted a visit to the mound from a concerned Coach Crowley, who came away leaving his senior captain in control with the game on the line. Mascali made the most of the moment striking out the next batter on four pitches to close out his day.

Junior Kyle McGowin was summoned for the save and quickly took charge striking out the first batter. He overcame a misplay in the infield by cutting down that runner at second base on a sacrifice bunt attempt. A walk and another error loaded the bases with Bears and set up a dramatic last out, a sinking liner to center caught on the run by Mascali with all the Stony Brook baserunners on the move.

It’s no wonder Coach Crowley came in relieved. Afterwards, he praised both sides saying, “Harrington had a great game and pitched and hit his way through some obvious back pain, but Joe provided the same thing we got from Kyle in last week’s series opener: dominating pitching. Now we have a win against their number one pitcher and now we go there. We have to take care of business against their number two and come back after our break to take care of Center Moriches Tuesday.”

 

It’s Never Over

Pierson’s last two games against Mercy ended much the same way, the outcome in question until the final out. Last Wednesday, things went the Whalers way in a 5-3 win in the park and Thursday Mercy made the final out in the field to send the Whalers home with an 8-6 loss.

A four-run second put Pierson up early last Wednesday. A pair of walks to McGowin and Riva and a sacrifice bunt by Tyler Gilbride set up an RBI single by Kudlak, with the Whalers keeping the pressure on when Crowley stroked a two-run double after an infield error.

The Whaler lead went to 5-0 in the third, McGowin singling and stealing two bases before coming in on a Gilbride RBI single. Mercy made its way back into the game against Mascali, an infield error in the midst of three hits, making the score 5-3. A long fly ball to left with two runners on was flagged down by Fusco, who made over-the-shoulder catch on the run to keep the Whalers in the lead.

Ed Schall came in to relieve Mascali and earned the save, but not before a slick double-steal moved Mercy runners to second and third with two outs in the top of the seventh. A comebacker to Schall seemed to end the threat, but it was only Mascali’s quick reflexes at first that nailed down the final out, Schall’s too hard throw nearly sailing into right field.

Errant throwing was the key culprit in last Thursday’s loss at Mercy to end that three-game set. Five errors behind pitcher Brandon Kruel put Mercy up 7-1, Kruel undermining his own day further by walking three in the fourth before a bloop hit knocked him from the game.

Determined to get back in the game, Pierson scored three in the top of the fifth, a Kudlak double and walks to Crowley and Ryan Miller setting up an RBI single by Mascali and an RBI double by McGowin. Unfortunately for the Whalers, another infield throwing error gave one of those runs back in the bottom of the fifth and made for an frantic top of the seventh.

The Whalers came up for their last at-bat down 8-4, the top of the line-up set to hit, Crowley leading off with a double. A called strike three, a walk and a force play, put the pressure back on Pierson, but Gilbride came through with an RBI single, Kruel walked and Kudlak singled to drive in another run, loading the bases and putting the tying run on second. The on-field drama became ever more intense as the count grew deeper on the next Pierson batter, but a swinging strike three sent the boys back to the bus disappointed.

Beyond the never-say-die effort, the other bright spots on Thursday were the pitching of senior shortstop Ryan Miller, who relieved Kruel with two-and-a-third innings of one-hit relief, and the hitting of sophomores Kudlak (three hits) and Gilbride (two hits), the pair adding punch and speed to the Whaler offense.

It’s All Whalers

The Whaler baseball JV played a pair of one-sided contests this week, game two against Mercy last Wednesday ending 18-1 after five innings and game one against Stony Brook Tuesday finishing 15-1 after four. The rain outs against those opponents have not yet been scheduled, but will be when school re-opens next week.

JV coach Henry Meyer was happy “to see everyone in and see almost everyone hitting.” He had his team practice slow rollers during indoor sessions this week and then saw his team successfully execute those quick pick-ups and releases for outs on Tuesday.

 

Whalers Open League Play With Come-From-Behind Win

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By Benito Vila

There’s a moment in every contest when the outcome could go either way. Most often, the winner is determined by who can make the most of their opportunities and come through at a crucial time.

That timely combination of luck and skill allowed the Pierson varsity baseball Whalers to open League VIII play with a 6-3 win over Mercy on Tuesday. Down 3-0 after two innings, a hit batsman, heads up baserunning and an infield error brought the boys within two in the top of the third.

Still down 3-1 in coming to bat in the top of the sixth, the Whalers’ made something out of a Ryan Miller walk when, after Joe Mascali forced Miller at second, Kyle McGowin launched a right centerfield home run to tie the score. The pressure was suddenly on the Monarchs when Tyler Gilbride drew a walk to follow McGowin and Dane Riva stroked a two-out single to left.

The contest now on the edge, the outcome tipped the Whalers’ way when Joe Dowling’s swinging third strike rolled away from the Monarch catcher and the throw to first for the putout pulled the first baseman off the bag. Gilbride, who had taken off from second on the swing, alertly rounded third on the throw to first and headed home, sliding in safely with the go-ahead run.

Even though the Whalers left the bases loaded, Gavin Kudlak singling before the final out, that one-run lead was enough, McGowin going back to the mound enthused by his first-ever fence-clearing “dinger”. That extra shot of confidence was more than Monarchs bats could handle as McGowin added yet another zero to the home line in the bottom of the sixth.

 

Basepath Mayhem

 

In the top of the seventh, Mascali and McGowin posted a pair of runs to put Pierson up 6-3. Mascali started the rally with a one-out double, moving to third on a McGowin single. All the pre-season planning on both sides broke down when McGowin found himself picked off first and being chased to second; it was then that Mascali broke for home, coming in ahead of the throw, McGowin taking third when all the attention went elsewhere. The dust wasn’t quite settled when McGowin stirred it up again, taking home on a passed ball.

The Monarchs did not go easily in the seventh, a pair of singles putting runners at the corners with two outs. McGowin’s final pitch was hit sharply to third and fielded there by Eddie Schall who fired to first to earn the Whalers their first win of the season.

In completing the game, McGowin scattered eight hits and struck out eight, walking only two, the pitching highlight coming in a nine-pitch three-strikeout fourth inning that was key to keeping the Whalers close. The only notable defensive lapses behind McGowin came in the second, an infield error leading to Mercy’s first two runs and a mental hiccup sending one more home without a throw.

 

A Good Feeling

 

After the game McGowin said, “The home run felt nice. It was fun to finally hit one over a fence. It felt really good because when I went back out to the mound, the only thing I had to worry about was pitching.”

Whaler coach Sean Crowley praised both his team and his pitcher in saying, “We got down, we got tough and we came back strong in the later innings. That was nice to see and it’s a good feeling to get that first win.”

Going through his scorebook knowing the Whaler bats were quiet on Saturday in a 5-0 non-league loss to Southampton and then again early on Tuesday, Coach Crowley wistfully noted, “We have to find our groove with our hitting. We’re not there yet.” He brightened a bit in adding, “I hope this becomes one of those never-say-die teams.”

The Mercy series continued yesterday afternoon in Mashashimuet Park and concludes Friday at Mercy in Riverhead at 4:30 p.m.

On Monday, the Whalers travel to Stony Brook for a 4 p.m. start to open the next three-game set. On Tuesday the boys are back in the park, hosting the Bears at 4:30 p.m., and on Wednesday they are back at Stony Brook, first pitch at 3:30 p.m.

 

Pre-season Wrap-up

 

Whalers finished up their pre-season preparations last week with a scrimmage against Hampton Bays in the park on Wednesday and the non-league contest at Southampton.

The Whalers took it to the Baymen, taking a third-inning 8-0 lead and outscoring their visitors 11-5. The timely hitting of Dowling and Riva backed the scoreless pitching of Mascali and Brandon Kruel in the early going.

Kruel figured more prominently in the final outcome as a third baseman, cooling a rally by catching a runner in a rundown between first and second while also keeping a runner from advancing from third; that heads-up play kept the score 8-5 and sparked a final Whaler surge at the plate.

That feeling of goodwill seeped away Saturday as Mariner pitcher Chris Pike threw a masterful one-hit complete game, striking out 12 Whalers in the process. The only two Pierson rallies of any sort were cut short by over-aggressive baserunning, Southampton making the plays they had to make.

Mascali and McGowin split the game for Pierson. Mascali took the mound for the first three innings, giving up two earned runs, and McGowin the last three, surrendering one earned run before a defensive lapse allowed a pair of walks to become unearned runs.

Coach Crowley said afterwards, “Pike threw a nice game, especially for this time of year. Joe and Kyle had good early season accuracy and velocity and were able to throw a variety of pitches. That was all we were looking for.”

 

Heartbreak and Happiness

 

The Whaler baseball JV closed up their pre-season by outscoring Hampton Bays in their final scrimmage last Wednesday and then losing a close contest at home to Southampton on Saturday. The loss to the Mariners saw the game get away in the top of the seventh inning, a bases-loaded misplay in the outfield turning a 3-1 advantage into a 4-3 deficit.

Unfazed, the young Whalers came out to the park Tuesday and posted five runs in their first at-bat on their way to a 16-3 win over the Mercy JV. Jake Weingartner started and pitched five innings with Sean Romeo tossing the last two frames; all of the Monarch runs came early in the game and were unearned.

JV coach Henry Meyer was glad “to get everyone in and see some good two-out hitting.” Sean Romeo and his brother Frank were both four-for-four to lead the attack. Weingartner was also strong at the plate, going three-for-four while Jim Fusco and Emet Evgen were each two-for-four, those five batters going a collective 15-for-20.

Not Quite Right Yet: Teams Struggle in Scrimmages

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By Benito Vila
The word “twitterpated” wonderfully describes the eager promise of spring; it’s a sudden, enjoyable excitement brought on by feeling free of winter and seeing brand new possibilities. With being twitterpated though there comes an awkwardness that makes the simple impossible and the difficult unimaginable.

And so it was this week as the Pierson baseball Whalers and softball Lady Whalers opened their pre-seasons, optimism and befuddlement sharing one moment with the next. That jittery start behind them, all the teams are now intent on settling into a groove, scrimmages complete for the most part, a set of non-league games scheduled for Saturday and league openers scheduled for Tuesday.

JV baseball opens the non-league action Saturday hosting Southampton in Mashashimuet Park at 10 a.m. Varsity and JV softball are also in the park, each playing Rocky Point at noon. Meanwhile, varsity baseball is away in Southampton Saturday, first pitch there is set for 11 a.m.
League VIII play opens for all the Pierson teams Tuesday against Mercy, the softball teams and JV baseball in the park and varsity baseball away. The softball games are scheduled for 4 p.m. and the baseball games for 4:30 p.m. The baseball teams switch sites on Wednesday, their match-ups with Mercy continuing, the varsity home at 4:30 p.m. and the JV away at the same time.

Too Long Innings
Varsity baseball opened their season in the park last Friday afternoon, finding their fielding giving way to long innings and their hitting falling prone to short at-bats while scrimmaging Southampton. That unbalanced baseball continued again Saturday morning in East Hampton, the Bonackers making the most of extra at-bats and the Whalers letting opportunities get away.

It was at the end of the Saturday’s play, when sophomore pitcher Gavin Kudlak completed a clean and scoreless inning and junior Kyle McGowin drove home the day’s first earned run that last week’s high hopes showed merit. After the scrimmage, Pierson varsity baseball coach Sean Crowley told his team, “We ended on a good note and now we know what we need to work on.”

The positives in the two scrimmages was the work put in by all the prospective Whaler pitchers: T.J. Arreguin, Casey Crowley, Tyler Gilbride, Brandon Kruel, Gavin Kudlak, Joe Mascali, Kyle McGowin and Ryan Miller. Crowley, Gilbride and McGowin also showed poise behind the plate and in the batter’s box, Crowley, notably, finding his way on base four out of six times.

The failure to roll up routine plays on pop ups, slow rollers and force-outs prolonged the Whalers’ time in the field in both scrimmages, early season inconsistency too often taking hold. At the same time, Whaler baserunning broke down several scoring chances and kept the offense from sustaining any pressure on the opposition.

Experienced in the jitters of the pre-season, Coach Crowley seemed unfazed on Tuesday, encouraging his squad after practice, pointing out, “We’ve worked on the things we fell short on this weekend and now we get on the field again tomorrow [hosting Hampton Bays in a scrimmage yesterday] and Saturday [in a non-league contest at Southampton]. We have what we need to win and there’s nothing keeping us from making those our games.”

More Work Together

Lady Whaler varsity coach Melissa Edwards saw her squads’ on-field strengths and weaknesses for the first time in scrimmages against Centereach and Longwood on Saturday. In breaking down the action, she described both, noting, “We were relaxed and just played. We put some kids on base and moved them around. We have speed on the basepaths and that was amazing to see. But, we need to finish. We need to score the runners; we left too many on base on Saturday.”

Tuesday’s non-league opener in East Hampton saw the Lady Bonackers make off with a 9-0 win, two home runs powering their attack. Meanwhile, the Lady Whalers were kept off the basepaths for the most part, totaling just two hits as a team. Coach Edwards said afterwards, “We’ll be working on our offense the rest of the week. Our bats have to come alive if we want any chance of winning the league.”

Coach Edwards also plans on “working with our pitchers and catchers. They need to learn one another a bit better, and hone their skills whether it be pitching or catching.” She remains sure of her team adding, “I know all these kids have it in them. They can all do big things.” When asked whom she has relied on to lead the team, Coach Edwards said, “Sam Federico always steps up and Megan Pintauro has a great persona and the ability to fire everyone up. Lindsay Warne has also stepped it up through her playing ability.”

Inside the JVs

Saturday’s JV baseball game with Southampton will be a re-match of last Friday’s scrimmage that ended in a 5-5 tie. In that contest, Whaler pitchers Donald Doran, Hunter Leyser and Sean Romeo saw their first action of the spring; a Jake Weingartner single scored a pair and a Sean Romeo RBI single kept the game close.

JV baseball coach Henry Meyer likes that his team is “improving everyday on the fundamentals and getting to know what’s going on inside the lines. What we need to keep doing is sustaining our focus for all seven innings in games and all two hours in practice.”

JV softball coach Kathy Amicucci summed up her team’s scrimmages by saying, “We fielded pretty well. We were a little hesitant at the plate and we need to work on our baserunning which we’ve had some trouble doing since we only have 12 on the team.” That lack of practice didn’t slow her girls down Tuesday in East Hampton, Jessica Warne, Kerianne FitzPatrick and Chelsea Freleng all successfully stealing bases.

But that ability to move ahead on the basepaths wasn’t enough Tuesday, one eight-run inning in the field allowing the Lady Bonackers to put the game away, 13-2. Coach Amicucci felt her team “played well in the beginning and the end, but not so much in the middle”. She praised the pitching and composure of Lindsay Duran who “kept her head the whole game, despite what was going on around her. She never looked frustrated or showed emotion. She just kept on pitching, which is what we needed her to do.”

Whaler Boys Look to Return to Playoffs

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By Benito Vila

 

Abundance is a good thing for the most part, but unexpectedly having more of something often means having to make changes. So it was for Pierson varsity baseball coach Sean Crowley on Monday as he planned the team workout in Mashashimuet Park.

Setting up a drill to prepare all his pitchers on how to best handle plays to different bases, Coach Crowley said, “I’ve never had eight pitchers before. This will be different.” Finding a way to rotate everyone through Monday came easy enough and that should also be the case this weekend, with scrimmages back-to-back Friday afternoon and Saturday morning.

The pre-season opener is set for the park tomorrow at 3:30 p.m. against Southampton; Saturday’s first pitch is scheduled for 10 a.m. in East Hampton. The team is due to back home Wednesday to host Hampton Bays in a final scrimmage at 4 p.m. and takes on Southampton again in a non-league match-up next Saturday morning. The Whalers open league play away Tuesday, March 31 at Mercy.

Last year’s team learned some hard-luck lessons through a series of one-run extra-inning losses, going 9-12 in league play and 10-12 overall. Back from that squad are seniors Casey Crowley, Joe Mascali and Ryan Miller. Also returning are juniors Joe Dowling, Brandon Kruel and Kyle McGowin. New to the varsity this spring are juniors T.J. Arreguin, Jim Fusco, George Hoglund, Mark Mahoney, Dane Riva, Eddie Schall and Jeff Schimmer and sophomores Tyler Gilbride and Gavin Kudlak.

Coach Crowley likes what he’s seen so far from his three senior captains, finding them bringing a purposeful determination to drills and seeing them taking on new positions in the field.

“We’re a bit deeper than we’ve been of late, and not just on the mound,” said the coach. “We have players this year that can play a variety of positions and that will help us as we get into our schedule.”

 

To make the county playoffs, the Pierson boys must post a better-than-.500 mark. Coach Crowley expects Center Moriches, Port Jefferson and Southold-Greenport to be the toughest teams in league play and recognized that private school opponents Mercy, Smithtown Christian and Stony Brook could have added new talent.

When asked to name the key leaders for the season, Coach Crowley quickly replied, “The three seniors, Dowling, McGowin and Kruel. They’ve been out there before and they know what’s expected of them. I know they’ll bring the rest of the team to where it needs to be.”

 

Bad break

The JV team lost one of its most enthusiastic players during practice Saturday, freshman Michael Heller breaking his foot in a slide into second base. Out for the season, and perhaps even summer league play, Heller is hoping to be with the team for its first scrimmages this weekend.

 

Making up the full JV roster are sophomores Donald Doran, Frank Romeo, Jake Weingartner and Lukas Wheeler and freshmen Canaan Campbell, Harley Decker, Paul Dorego, Emet Evgen, Sean Hartnett, Brendan Hemby, Hunter Leyser, Jeremy Pepper and Sean Romeo.

Former Bonac and Pace University standout Henry Meyer is leading the team as a first-year Pierson coach, with Paul Dorego and John Romeo serving as full-time assistant coaches. Coach Meyer plans to use the pre-season “to see who can pitch and will get everyone to throw a little bit” in trying to set up his rotation. He’s also looking to fill his outfield slots by finding “who will go and get it.”

 

It Won’t Be Long: Practices Open, Scrimmages Next Week

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By Benito Vila

The snow started to come down late Monday afternoon a week to the day after a nor’easter closed schools and made for a wild white start to March. Throughout Pierson these flakes were not quite as welcome, baseball and softball players looking out windows, holding their gloves and heading for the gym for their first practices of the spring.

Incredibly enough, their teams are scheduled to play outdoors for the first time next week. The Lady Whalers open up their pre-season scrimmages next Thursday in Mashashimuet Park, the varsity and JV squads hosting Westhampton at 4 p.m. The Whalers scrimmage Southampton next Friday, the varsity at home in the park at 4 p.m. and the JV away at 3:30 p.m.

The boys are due to continue scrimmaging the very next day, the varsity heading over to East Hampton for a 10 a.m. start that Saturday and the JV meeting the Bonackers in the park. The girls have a non-league match-up with the Lady Bonackers away Tuesday, March 24 and are back in the park the next day to scrimmage Riverhead.

 

A Lucky Start

The Lady Whaler varsity will be led by Melissa Edwards, a 2001 Riverhead graduate and a 2005 Springfield College graduate who has previously coached softball at Suffolk University and at Brandeis University. The JV will once again have Kathy Amicucci at the helm.

Coach Edwards saw 26 players turn out for her first official practice practice Monday, and is looking to keep 14 on varsity. Having seen the girls throw in open gym sessions during the winter, she said afterwards, “I am very pleased with the core that we have returning. All the kids want to play; they are showing up, they’re working hard, and they all want a spot. When you have everyone there wanting it as bad as these kids do, you can’t not be happy with what they are bringing to the program.”

In describing what she wants to do in the next week, Coach Edwards added, “I am looking to see who wants the nine starting spots out there. I am fortunate to have more than one player at each position, and on top of that more than one player that can play the position well. I just need to sit back and watch who is going to run with it.”

Coach Edwards’ concern for her team goes beyond the field, noting, “These kids all like one another, so as a staff we are lucky. However, they sure can chat it up. They need a little more focus, because when these kids are focused their play improves tremendously. I would like to see all of them doing the little things, and that’s what this coaching staff is here to do: make these girls the best ball players we can, while making them great people. I want to see the girls to play instinctively and trust their stuff; I always want them looking ahead to the next play. Being a student of the game is a huge part of succeeding as a program.”

 

Ball in the Sky

Sean Crowley enters into his 22nd season as Whaler varsity baseball coach, looking to notch his 200th Pierson win and secure another berth in the county playoffs. The Whaler JV will be led by Bridgehampton history teacher Henry Meyer, a former Bonac baseball player and coach, who played catcher for Pace University.

The baseball Whalers were in the gym Monday and outside Tuesday, 30 strong, with the team assignments in flux. Coach Crowley said he expects “to use the first ten days to get the arms in shape, let the boys see the ball fly in the sky and set the focus on hitting so that we can take it to the opposition.”

With most of last year’s varsity pitchers returning, Coach Crowley admits he has “high expectations for the new season. Whenever a team returns with pitching, it should have high hopes.” Even with that seasoned talent, making for the playoffs will take some extra effort this spring, the Section XI (Suffolk County) rules committee recently requiring all qualifiers to have a better than .500 record; in years past, .500 was sufficient.

Coach Crowley likes the mood of both squads, having watched them come together in some informal winter workouts, which he said were “enough to prepare, but not so much that they aren’t fresh and enthused about a new season.”

 

There’s More

Softball and baseball are not the only options for Pierson students this spring. Lacrosse, track and tennis are also available through a “shared sports” program involving Ross, Shelter Island and East Hampton.

Pierson girls are the majority of the Ross girls’ JV lacrosse team, those Lady Whalers donning Ross blue to play with their Lady Raven and Lady Indian teammates. Pierson boys are also making their way down 114, delighted to be a part of the first Ross boys’ varsity lacrosse team.

Ross will also have Pierson boys and Pierson girls on its track teams, while East Hampton will have four Whalers coming to play tennis.

 

 

Old Time Baseball Returns

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While NASCAR is gaining popularity in some quarters of the country, baseball is still the Great American Pastime here. And Bridgehampton’s history with the sport will be underscored this weekend with an old-fashioned baseball game played by 1864 rules.

The Bridgehampton Historical Society will host the game on the broad field behind their headquarters on the corner of Corwith and Main streets this Saturday, September 20, beginning at 11 a.m.

“Bridgehampton has a long and rich history with the game,” said Stacy Dermont, program director for the historical society, and she has been going through old records and reports for information about the many teams who called the hamlet home.

One article she recalls reported on Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders playing an exhibition game against a local nine at the end of the 19th century.

The Rough Riders lost, she said, but the report noted they had a handicap: “They were sick and wore boots,” said Dermont.

The game this Saturday will be between the Brooklyn Atlantics and the Bridgeport Orators, two teams that compete in a league of other clubs that play by vintage rules and in period costumes. For example, the players do not wear mitts, despite the fact they play with hand-stitched balls that are just as hard and travel as fast as the ones used today.

The original Brooklyn Atlantics, organized in 1855, were recognized as national champions in 1864, and played through the 1881 season. Reformed in 1997, they have had a home field at the Smithtown Historical Society grounds since 2000.

The original Orators, led by the versatile Hall of Famer James H. O’Rourke, who was player, manager and owner of the team, won their league pennant in 1904. Recreated in 2007 the team plays home games in their city’s Seaside Park.

Dermont also pointed out that Bridgehampton was home to one of the most celebrated players in the history of the game, Carl Yastrzemski, who played on one of several traveling teams in the days when each town had their own. Noting that many of Yastrzemski’s own family played the game as well, Dermont said it was quite possible his father may have been the better ball player.

“He turned down a chance to play pro ball because it was during the war and he had to work on the farm,” said Dermont.

She said she has been “digging and begging for information” about Bridgehampton’s baseball past, and said the game was played there as long as any other local village.

“Games like rounders and other stick and ball games were played for centuries,” she said.

In addition to baseball, the society will have a blacksmithing demonstration and will also bring a vintage ice cream truck to the game for refreshments.

“This is entertaining for us, and it was entertainment for them,” she said, “in the days when there was no MTV.”

Dermont hopes the day will spark some enthusiasm from the crowd, “We’d love to see Bridgehampton be able to field its own vintage baseball team.”

Photo above shows the Bridgehampton playing fields at the end of the 19th century.