Monthly Archives: May 2011

Newburyport Defeats Amesbury 7-4 and Gets Share of Cape Ann League D2 Title

Newburyport celebrates winning at least a share of the Cape Ann League D2 title.

(Amesbury) This game will not be fondly remembered by AHS Coach Chris Perry and his Amesbury Indian softball team.

Why?  With a chance to win the Cape Ann League Division 2 title, Amesbury played poorly and lost to Newburyport, 7-4, on Wednesday afternoon.

The Newburyport win means that the Clippers (who won the CAL D2 title last year) have earned at least a tie for the title.  The pressure is now on Amesbury because they have a game (Thursday) at home with Triton that they must win to also share the title.

Newburyport (15-3) has now won twelve of their last thirteen games and with this win they avenge an early-season 10-9 loss at Newburyport.

The Clippers built up a 4-0 lead after 4 ½ innings and then gave all four runs back  in the bottom of the fifth.  The Indians gave up three more runs in the top of the sixth and never recovered.

Hits were plentiful (20) and Amesbury lost despite having at least one hit in every inning.  Amesbury loaded the bases twice and didn’t score either time.  The toughest was the 4th when they loaded the bases with no outs.

Let’s just say that there was plenty of offense!  It was the defenses that surprised me – “subpar,” would put it kindly because Amesbury had three errors and Newburyport five.  The “good” news for the Clippers was that theirs all happened during the Indians four-run fifth.

The Indians spread their mistakes out.  There wasn’t a single Newburyport run that couldn’t be considered some sort of gift.

Taylor Summit holds the ball high after tagging Janine Fatal for the game’s final out.

Amesbury also had, by my estimation, five costly mental mistakes.  Catchable popups dropped in between Ali French and Janine Fatal and later Erin Leary and Cassie Schultz and both runners scored.  Third baseman Anna Kate Webber fielded a grounder in the sixth and instead of getting the out at first tried to catch the runner off third unsuccessfully.  On a relatively deep fly ball to left, Ashley Valme (on third base) didn’t tag up and score.  The most grievous was the fifth one.  The Indians had a two-out rally started with a single by Janine Fatal and then another single, this time by Amanda Schell.  However, on Amanda’s hit Janine rounded second too far and Lea Tomasz’s throw to second baseman Taylor Summit nailed her for the final out of the game.

I apologize for beating on the Amesbury team with this summary but it was all so uncharacteristic of a very good team.  You certainly don’t get to be 17-2 the way they played in this one.

Maddy Stanton had a “memorable” fifth inning but recovered to score a run in the sixth and cleanly handle a grounder in the seventh.

Newburyport won this one but if all you saw of this game was them in the field in the fifth inning you would have wondered how.  After two outs things got real ugly.  Over the next six batter third baseman Maddy Stanton had three errors.  Normally sure-handed it was shocking to see grounders go off her glove as well as under her glove.  It is an unwritten rule that if someone is having trouble in the field the ball will always find them.  It sure happened to Maddy.  Pitcher Molly Rowe bobbled a grounder and there was also a throwing error to home (by shortstop Kendra Dow?).

But other than the fifth inning, Newburyport was solid in the field.  As for Amesbury, they hit very well but were out of character in the other aspects of the game.

In the Newburyport first, Lea Tomasz singled up the middle and later scored on Ashley Casellini’s sacrifice fly to center.

In the Newburyport second, Taylor Summit walked and eventually scored on Rachel Webster’s sacrifice fly to right.

In the Newburyport fifth, Eleni Kacher and Lea Tomasz  reached second and third and Kendra Dow drove in both of them with a single to right.

In the Amesbury fifth, the Indians had one hit (Erin Leary single) but benefited from the five Clipper errors.  Scorers were; Ali French, Erin Leary, Ashley Valme, and Alexis Boswell.

In the Newburyport sixth, the Clippers loaded the bases and Rachel Webster scored on Lea Tomasz’ fielder’s choice.  Eleni Kacher scored on catcher Laura Kaminski’s throwing error and Maddy Stanton reached home on Cassie Davis’ sacrifice fly to center.

AHS coach Chris Perry had a lengthy, and heated, discussion with the umpiring crew.

Another memory from this game was the extended delay in Amesbury’s 4-run fifth when AHS Coach Chris Perry argued for the longest time on a ruling that gave his Indians two runs.  That the umpires didn’t end the discussion and resume play had me believing that they weren’t sure that they had it right.

The weather was shocking.  Who expects a game played under sunny skies with temperatures in the 70’s in April/May in these parts??

Both Lea Tomasz and Eleni Kacher had two hits and scored two runs.  Kendra Dow had two RBI.

Laura Kaminski, Erin Leary, Ashley Valme, and Janine Fatal all had two hits for Amesbury.

Prior to this game with Newburyport, Amesbury had allowed less than two runs per game over the last ten games.

Both teams have qualified for the state tournament.

(I keep track of things myself and take my own pictures.  Mistakes are not uncommon.)

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Newburyport Downs Ipswich 7-0 to Win 14th

Taylor Summit, Beth Castantini, and Kendra Dow are all smiles after Win #14.

Maddy Stanton scores on a wild pitch as pitcher Katie Glaubitz covers.

(Newburyport) The Newburyport Clippers (14-3) are on a big-time roll.

On the last regular-season home game, the Clippers defeated Ipswich, 7-0, on surprisingly warm (for spring 2011) Tuesday afternoon at Cashman Park.

The red-hot Clippers have won eleven of their last twelve games and now get to play Amesbury (Wednesday at Amesbury) and sort out which of them is the best team in Division 2 in the Cape Ann League.  Amesbury won the first meeting, 10-9, at Cashman Park.

The loss eliminated Ipswich (7-11) from any chance of making the post-season.  In this one the Tigers did themselves in early in the field and didn’t have the hitting against Beth Castantini (four hitter with eight K’s) to recover as the innings went by.

Liz Glavin – Tiger slugger was intentionally walked twice.

A key piece of strategy kept Tiger Liz Glavin (CAL’s most dangerous hitter?) from hurting the Clippers.  In the first and third innings Newburyport intentionally walked Liz even though there already were runners on.  The batters after Liz (Sam Wideberg and Rachel Glaubitz) couldn’t deliver.

In the fifth,  the Tigers had runners on first and second when it was Liz’s turn.  Newburyport, with a 5-0 lead, opted not to walk her.  This strategy also worked as Liz hit a hard grounder to third that Maddy Stanton fielded and stepped on third to retire the side.

Liz will be continuing her softball at Wentworth Institute in 2012.

The opportunistic Clippers took full advantage of some low-light film defense by the Tigers in the first.  Newburyport gathered four runs on just two hits (Maddy Stanton & Ashley Casellini).  Ipswich committed three errors and had two wild pitches.  It wasn’t pretty stuff if you watching from the Ipswich sidelines.

Pitcher Katie Glaubitz (allowed five hits in five innings) fielded a one-hopper hit by second batter Lea Tomasz and went for the force-out at second.  Good idea except neither second baseman Becca Dunlop nor shortstop Carolyn Lynch covered second.  Katie’s throw went into centerfield.

Before the inning ended, catcher Liz Glavin had a bad throw to second and Carolyn Lynch had bobbled a grounder.

Ashley Casellini drove in the only earned run of the first with a single to center.

Newburyport added a single run in the second as Cassie Davis tripled (to center) to drive in Maddy Stanton.

In the fifth, Cassie Davis put herself into a rundown past first and Lea Tomasz (who had singled) slipped home from third for Newburyport’s sixth run.

Lea Tomasz’s single in the sixth inning drove in Rachel Webster with the Clippers’ seventh, and final, run.

Lea Tomasz starts the play in which she will throw Rachel Glaubitz out at 3B in the sixth inning.

Ipswich killed a developing big inning in the 6th when Clipper left fielder Lea Tomasz threw out Rachel Glaubitz at third on a Carolyn Lynch single.

There were balloons attached to the Newburyport bench for their six seniors: Cassie Davis, Taylor Summit, Shannon Brunault, Rachel Webster, Eleni Kacher, and Corrie Benton.

Jill Lombard recorded the Tigers first hit (infield grounder) with two out in the 5th.

Lea Tomasz had two hits, scored two runs, and had an RBI to pace Newburyport’s hitters.

(I collect my own stats and take my own pictures.  Any mistakes are unintentional.)

senior Corrie Benton

senior Eleni Kacher

senior Rachel Webster

senior Taylor Summit

senior Cassie Davis

senior Shannon Brunault

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Newburyport Softball Defeats Masconomet 7-3 for Thirteenth Win

Centerfielder Eleni Kacher relaxes after catching the final out in Newburyport’s win over Masco.

Molly Rowe – retired eleven of the last twelve batters in a complete game win.

(Newburyport)  The Newburyport softball team defeated Masconomet, 7-3, on Monday afternoon at overcast Cashman Park in Cape Ann League action.

Newburyport (13-3) continues to roll along.  They’ve won ten of their last eleven games.  Masconomet (4-12) continues to roll along as well but unfortunately for them it is in the opposite direction – they’ve lost eight of their last nine games.

The Clippers stacked up five runs in the second inning to recover from a 1-0 deficit and that was enough as Molly Rowe limited the Chieftains to four hits over the last five innings.

Molly had five strikeouts and retired eleven of the last twelve batters she faced.

Newburyport was hitless in their first inning but erupted for twelve hits off of Masco pitcher Molli Marshall the rest of the way.  Other than the five-spot in the second, the Clippers had solo runs in the third and fourth.

Masco picked up two runs in the 4th and then their bats were nearly silent the rest of the way.

Kendra Dow – Clipper shortstop had three hits and scored two runs.

Kendra Dow led the Newburyport attack with three hits while scoring two runs.  Cassie Davis, Shannon Brunault, and Rachel Webster each had two hits.

Julia O’Reilly and Kiki Brown collected half of Masco’s eight hits between them.

Julia’s first hit in the top of the first was a well-placed bunt that attracted the attention of pitcher Molly Rowe and first baseman Rachel Webster.  Unfortunately, for Newburyport, no one was covering first and it turned into a hit.  Two hits later the Chieftains had a run (RBI by Molli Marshall) and runners on second and third with one out.  However, Molly Rowe K’d Taylor Evans and handled Lissa Rescigno’s grounder to get out of the jam.

In the Newburyport second, the Clippers mixed five hits together with a throwing error by third baseman Julia O’Reilly.  Newburyport batted around in the five-run outburst.  Shannon Brunault, Rachel Webster, Maddy Stanton, and Lea Tomasz had RBI.

The Clippers picked up their 6th run in Inning #3. Kendra Dow singled, went to second on a wild pitch, and to third on Taylor Summit’s single.  She came home on shortstop Taylor Evans’ throwing error.

Julia O’Reilly – two hits and RBI

Kiki Brown – two hits and run scored

Masco tallied two runs in the fourth inning.  A walk (Lissa Rescigno), a hit (Kiki Brown), and a sacrifice bunt (Courtney Gotts) put runners on second and third with one out.  Third baseman Maddy Stanton decided to go home with Samantha Martin’s grounder and was too late to get Lissa Rescigno.  Julia O’Reilly’s single to left brought Kiki Brown home with the second run.  Still threatening with runners on second and third, Molly retired the next two hitters to limit the Masco damage.

Newburyport got a gift run in the bottom of the fourth.  Cassie Davis singled, went to second on a passed ball, and reached home on third baseman Julia O’Reilly’s 2-base throwing error.

NHS coach Peter Murray was heavily into landscaping the Cashman Park field when I arrived early.  He made the usual puddles disappear.

What can you say about the weather!  The good news during this game was that there was no wind and it didn’t actually rain.  Bringing an umbrella to a game this season has been almost as important as trying to guess which of the three home fields the Clippers will be playing on.

Molli Marshall – Masco pitcher

Molli Marshall was just about the most relaxed pitcher I’ve seen.  She was carrying on conversations even while she was pitching!

After a missed popup by her third baseman Julia O’Reilly, who was wearing a mask, Molli said, “Take off the mask and let them see the dye job!”  Comedy Central material!

Clipper shortstop Kendra Dow continues to impress with her strong, accurate throws.  I learned that she grew up throwing a baseball rather than a softball.

I’m still looking forward to Wednesday’s game at Amesbury between the Indians (16-1) and the Clippers (13-3).  The Indians were beaten by North Reading on Saturday.  The Clippers lost, 10-9, in their earlier non-league meeting with Amesbury.

Both teams have qualified for the post-season.  At stake could well be a share of the CAL Division 2 title.

(I collect my own information and take my own pictures.  Mistakes happen.)

Shannon Brunault heads for third

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Filed under Cape Ann League, Masconomet, Newburyport

Pumping Blame

Where should the blame go for Newburyport's high gasoline prices?

“President Obama rose in approval ratings following the raid which killed bin Laden at his hideout in Pakistan after years of intelligence gathering.  The terrorist was brought to justice thanks to waterboarding, wiretapping, and targeted assassination.  It’s funny how the one time President Obama should have blamed something on George W. Bush, he didn’t.”  Argus Hamilton

We are a generation of blamers.  In fact, we do it so routinely that we are experts on what causes our problems.

I would love to take that “blame game” to any Newburyport gas station and ask customers to place blame for the high gas prices.

We’re all getting impacted by the price hikes on gasoline.  I took my truck in to buy gas recently.  The tank was half empty when I went in and my wallet was half empty when I went out!

I’m trying to imagine the financial toll on local schools districts as they add in transportation costs for those gas-guzzling school buses at the high gas prices we now have.  How about Triton with students in distant Salisbury?  Are they headed for four-day school weeks at longer hours to save on travel costs?

On April 6th in Langhorne (PA), the President was asked by someone in the crowd if there was anything he could do about the high gas prices.  His answer was that increasing oil production was neither a short-term nor a long-term solution.  He added that the answer to the problem was more efficient cars, especially electric cars.  He advised the questioner that if his car got low gas mileage he should trade it in.

Let’s get this straight.  High gas prices are the problem and I’m asking for help.  The President’s advice ignores my plight and suggests I spend money, I’m short of, on another vehicle.  The vehicle he’d like me to drive costs way beyond my current means.  Someone here is detached from reality!

Gasoline prices in the US have risen noticeably and in my opinion the President has a lot to do with it.

(1) He has gotten us into trouble in the Middle East where much of the oil we get is produced.  His “leadership from behind,” as one of his advisors called it, has been embarrassing.  He has encouraged regime change in areas where those who will take over idolize the departed bin Laden.  He has made getting present and future oil from this region difficult and costly.

(2) He has spent us into immeasurable debt causing the value of the dollar and our savings to decline.  It now costs a lot more of our dollars to buy what we need, including gas.

(3) He has restricted the production of oil off our coasts.  His apologists cite environmental reasons but why was he interested in investing with Brazil in drilling off their shores?

After last year’s BP disaster caution made sense for future drilling.  However, that was a year ago and the studies and recommendations that were to be released are long overdue.

According to a recent CNN poll, 69% of Americans now favor increased offshore drilling.  Folks want something done and the President is again leading from behind.

A bill was passed on May 6th by the House of Representatives called HR 1230 (Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act).  As the title suggests, the bill forces the administration to move ahead toward offshore drilling.

The bill passed, 266-149.  Most Republicans supported it as well as thirty-three Democrats.

Unfortunately, our representative (John Tierney) chose to vote against it.  Our elected official appears oblivious to the reasons I gave for the high oil prices and instead wants investigations to see if individuals could be manipulating the price of oil upward.  Meanwhile the gas prices are high and threatening to go higher.

Next time you’re at the pumps, remember the connection the current President and our US Rep have to the high price you end up paying.  Blame them.  They deserve it.

(This article appeared in the May 20th edition of the Newburyport Current.)

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Filed under Barack Obama, John Tierney, Newburyport Current

D’Agostino and Fecteau Lead Triton Past Amesbury 7-1

Rich Fecteau rounds third during a 3-run homer in the sixth inning as Matt Enaire watches .

Cam D’Agostino – complete game three hitter

(Rowley) Cam D’Agostino’s complete game 3-hitter and Rich Fecteau’s three-run homer led Triton past Amesbury, 7-1, on Friday afternoon at Eiras Park in Cape Ann League baseball action.

Cam held the Indians hitless over the last 5 2/3 innings as the tourney-bound Vikings recorded their eleventh win of the season.

Rich Fecteau’s blast over the right field fence in the bottom of the sixth inning gave Cam a nice six-run cushion going into the final inning.  That “cushion” was just three runs going into that inning and Tim Cashman did warm up but wasn’t needed in the seventh.

Plenty of accolades for Cam and Rich but anyone on hand was marveling at two outfield plays by right fielder Asa Knowles.  JC Collette was on the wrong end of both catches.  In the fifth, it was a running catch toward the fence that could well have been a triple for JC if it had gone over Ace’s outstretched glove.  In the seventh, Asa ended the game by making a diving catch on a blooper into short right.

Asa also singled in a run in the fourth.  Someone in the Triton dugout opined afterward, “Did he just have the game of his life??”

Asa Knowles makes a diving catch to end the game.

Amesbury (7-8) scored its lone run in the first as JC Collette’s double to left delivered Tyler Lay.  The Indians loaded the bases in both the second and fourth with two outs but each time Cam D’Agostino retired Tyler Lay.  The first time on a fly to center and the second time on a grounder to short.

Triton picked up two runs in the first on Blaise Whitman’s double to right.  Tim Cashman and Rich Fecteau scored the runs.  Tim fell down rounding second on his hit to right center and then fell down rounding third on Rich’s hit.  Later he was getting his wrist taped.

Tim drove in Jarrod Mullen with the first run in the sixth on a grounder to left.  Rich Fecteau followed with the 3-run blast over the fence in right.

Cam D’Agostino struck out seven and gave up six walks.

Tyler Lay scores Amesbury’s only run in the first.

Sean Ward went the distance for Amesbury.  He had five strikeouts but gave up eleven hits including a 3-run homer.

Rich Fecteau had three hits, three rbi, scored two runs, and had two errors.  Nice job of filling the stat sheet!

It was indeed a remarkable weather day.  There was no rain and no wind.

Eiras Park has bleachers on both sides and convenient parking.  It also has the police station handy in case fans get rowdy!

(I collect my own stats and take my own pictures.  I make an occasional mistake.  Bear with me.)

JC Collette waits at home to tag out Dmitri Hunt.

Asa Knowles

Rich Fecteau

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Filed under Amesbury, Triton

Poor Defense Dooms Haverhill 10-2 Against Newburyport

Cassie Davis reaches third as NHS Coach Peter Murray watches.

Lea Tomasz scores in the first on Rachel Webster’s rbi single.

(Newburyport) Newburyport defeated Haverhill, 10-2, on Thursday afternoon at Perkins Field in a non-league softball game.

The Clippers (11-3) have won eight of their last nine games and the contrast between them and visiting Haverhill (1-15) took a while to become evident.

I went anticipating a blowout and even tried, before the game, to get up to speed on softball’s mercy rule.  But this wasn’t one of those kinds of games, in fact the Hillies led 2-1 into the bottom of the 4th.

Newburyport got it’s run in the first on a double to right center by Lea Tomasz and 2-out bloop single to center by Rachel Webster.

Haverhill took the lead in a wild third inning after going runner-less in the first two innings.  They loaded the bases with one out on a Ellie MacArthur single to right, a hit batsman (Liz Murphy) and late throw to 3b by pitcher Molly Rowe on Kayla Pellot’s bunt.  Second baseman Taylor Summit took in Kallie Suplinskas’s liner and nearly picked Ellie MacArthur off of third for what would have been the last out.  Then Taylor dropped Casey Birch’s infield popup to let in the Hillies first run and Theresa Ross singled up the middle to bring home Liz Murphy.  However, Kayla Pellot also tried to score and was thrown out at the plate for the final out of the inning.

Haverhill’s Kallie Suplinskas was victimized by poor defense.

In the bottom of the fourth it was Haverhill’s chance to get “generous.”  It was a harmless start with two unassisted putouts by first baseman Haley DeRoche.  However, a couple of walks and Liz Murphy’s drop of a third-out infield popup and Newburyport’s Shannon Brunault crossed home with a run.  Ashley Casellini’s infield single drove Taylor Summit home with another run.

Newburyport led 3-2 going into the bottom of the 5th.  This was when Haverhill showed why it has lost twelve straight.  Lack of defense.  Three of the first four Clippers reached on errors.  Two routine fly balls to center were dropped and later an infield popup was dropped at first.  These miscues gave the Clippers two undeserved runs.  Shannon Brunault singled another run in and later a fielder’s choice by Taylor Summit brought home a fourth run.  All four runs were seriously unearned and put the Hillies down, 7-3.

The Clippers added three more in the sixth.

Except for the glitch on the infield popup in the third inning, the Newburyport defense was excellent especially against bunts.  The Hillies bunted often but had little to show for it because of solid infield defense by the Clippers.  Bobbles are infrequent and throws are usually strong and accurate.

Haverhill bunted often but the Newburyport infield defense reacted well.

Bad weather.  You just can’t get enough of it this season.  Cloudy and drizzly with a chance of serious rain at any moment.  Ink on paper never holds up well under those conditions.  My camera manual takes a dim view of dampness.  Point?  I lead the way to the exits when rain seems likely!

A game to look forward to is next Wednesday (May 25th) at Amesbury with Newburyport.  Amesbury is cruising along undefeated but in an earlier meeting (at Newburyport) the Indians barely won (10-9).  The Clippers had runners on 2nd and 3rd in the last inning with one out and couldn’t get either run in.  The game should be worth seeing.

(I collect my own information and take my own pictures.  Mistakes happen.)

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Filed under Haverhill, Newburyport

My Visit to the New Hampshire Fisher Cats

The view from the warning track at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium in Manchester (NH) the home of the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.

Fisher Cats Adeiny Hechavarria (left) and Joel Carreno (right)

(Manchester NH) I visited the home of the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Blue Jay farm team) on Wednesday morning for a 10:35AM game with the Portland Sea Dogs (Red Sox farm team).

This was minor league ball at the Double-A level.  Most of the players were under 25 with plenty of prospects in the mix.

The Fisher Cats won the game, 3-0, as three pitchers combined for a one-hitter.  The only hit was an off-field blooper to left by Chih-Hsien Chiang in the fourth inning off of pitcher Joel Carreno.

Joel pitched seven strong innings striking out seven and picking up his first win at the AA level.  First baseman Mike McDade’s 2-run, line-drive shot to right center in the fourth inning gave Joel all the runs he needed.

This was my first visit to Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.  The team has used the 6500-seat park since 2005.

Fisher Cats dugout

The park was clean even though there had been a game played there the night before.

Media Relations Manager Matt Leite graciously allowed me access to the field before the game.  This gave me a chance to walk around the outside of the field.  I really like viewing a park from the warning track.

The weather was in a word…..miserable.  Temperatures close to 50 with 15-20 mph winds and occasional drizzle.  Nothing there to keep the game from being played and since the Fisher Cats were scheduled for Reading (PA) the next night there wouldn’t be any sort of delay.  A gas heater was set up in the Portland dugout to warm them up.

I had done a Map Quest search on Manchester (NH) and learned that it takes less than an hour to get there (from Newburyport).  That makes it a couple of minutes closer for me than Portland (ME), where the Sea Dogs play.

Sea Dogs Alex Hassan (left) and Mitch Dening (right)

Minor league ball is really a bargain to attend.  The most expensive seats at the Fisher Cats home games are $12.  The lowest are $6.  There were no obstructed views.

There are also plenty of special events.  Today there were twenty-nine school groups in attendance.  Many of the students seemed perfectly content to be wearing t-shirts in weather conducive to three layers!

It was hard to gauge the loyalties of the crowd.  I am certain that there were plenty of Red Sox fans on hand but they weren’t very obvious about their team favorite.  Situations that usually draw significant crowd reactions, such as strikeouts and end-of-innings, drew very little response for either team.  Maybe it was the weather and the abundance of pre-occupied school kids.  I did learn that five of the seven largest crowds they have had were against Portland.

Sea Dog players from Taiwan - Che-Hsuan Lin (left) and Chih-Hsien Chiang (right)

I had my trusty camera (Canon EOS Rebel T1i) with me.  When I did a story on Todd Jamison (of Newburyport) before a summer Sea Dogs game several years ago I was using a little digital camera.  It was a nice camera for close-ups but in places where I couldn’t get close……..not so much.

A real pleasant surprise for me at Manchester was being able to get into the dugouts during this game.  Before the game, Matt showed me where the photographers are allowed to be in each dugout.  I waited until innings ended and went into the dugout where the players had gone onto the field and watched several innings from the photographers’ section.  As it turned out, there were no other photographers.  My chief concern was getting hit by a ball ripped into the dugout, so I stayed behind the screen while play was on.  But what a great view it was!

One of the reasons I chose to come to a Fisher Cats game was because of the proximity the team has to the readership of the paper I work for.  Another reason was to get some pictures of minor league prospects for both teams.

Getting the pictures wasn’t as easy as I had hoped.  I had to do quite a bit of homework to get up to speed as to which players were closest to the majors on each roster.  Since I didn’t know the players by sight I had to create a list with names and numbers of the top players.  Cold weather put everyone in warmup coverings over their shirts so my list of numbers didn’t work.  Then when the players didn’t have the warmup coverings on they only had numbers on the backs of their uniform with no names.  Ideally, I would want a picture from the front but I had to see them from the back first.  (I’m trying to set myself up with an excuse if the names of players are mixed up in the pictures I’ve included.)

Blue Jays prospects I saw (and took pictures of) playing for the Fisher Cats:

Adeiny Hechavarria is a 22-year old shortstop who defected from Cuba in 2009.  In April of 2010 he was signed to a four-year, $10,000,000 deal.

Mike McDade

Darin Mastroianni

Travis d'Arnaud

Mike McDade is a 22-year old power hitter working his way through the Toronto system.  This first baseman had 21 homers and 64 rbi at Dunedin (A+) last season.

Travis d’Arnaud is a 22-year old catcher.  He was selected in the first round by the Phillies in 2007.  He was traded to Toronto in the 2009 Roy Halladay deal.

Anthony Gose

Anthony Gose is a 20-year old center fielder.  He was selected by the Phillies in the second round in 2008.  On July 29, 2010 he was traded to Houston in the Roy Oswalt deal and on the same day sent from Houston to Toronto for Brett Wallace.  He had 45 stolen bases in 2010.

Darin Mastroianni is a 25-year-old outfielder.  He batted .301 with 46 stolen bases last year with New Hampshire.  He started this year at AAA Las Vegas but wasn’t getting regular playing time because of the prospects there so was moved back to New Hampshire.

Red Sox prospects I saw (and took pictures of) at the Fisher Cats game:

Alex Hassan

Tim Federowicz

Ryan Lavarnway

Will Middlebrooks

Alex Hassan is a 23-year-old outfielder currently leading the Eastern League in hitting.  He has more walks than strikeouts. He went to BC High and then to Duke.  He was drafted as a pitcher.

Ryan Lavarnway is a 23-year-old catcher who can hit.  Last year between Winston-Salem and Portland had 22 homers and 102 rbi.  He was the 2010 Red Sox minor league offensive player of the year.

Will Middlebrooks is a 22-year-old third baseman.  From Texas, he was recruited by Texas A&M as a quarterback.  He is a friend of Patriot draftee Ryan Mallet of Arkansas.

I had a very good time visiting the New Hampshire Fisher Cats and am thankful to their management (especially Matt Leite) for the opportunity.

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Filed under Boston Red Sox, Portland Sea Dogs, Toronto Blue Jays