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August 10th, 2014

Magic Johnson reflects on '12 trade between Red Sox, Dodgers

August 10, 2014

PAWTUCKET --The very presence of Magic Johnson at McCoy Stadium on Sunday offered an interesting juxtaposition.

Here was the NBA legend, standing on the same plush and well-manicured field that became second nature to Allen Webster and Rubby De La Rosa during the past two seasons. The two former PawSox pitchers represent the prospect-laden haul the Red Sox received from Johnson’s Dodgers when the two teams ironed out a blockbuster trade that is rapidly approaching its two-year anniversary.

No rest for the champs: Cumberland American already in Williamsport

August 10, 2014

Special to The Times

It's a bus ride that will never get old for Cumberland American Little League.

The newly crowned New England Regional champions left Bristol, Conn., Sunday morning for Williamsport, Pa., and the Little League World Series.

"They left via coach bus at nine in the morning," Eastern Region assistant director Patrick Holden said.

August 6th

Cumberland American concludes pool play on winning note

August 6, 2014

BRISTOL, Conn.  –  Perhaps 30 minutes after the Cumberland American All-Stars had sustained a 5-3 walk-off loss to Fairfield American of Connecticut on Tuesday night, manager Dave Belisle conducted a meeting in the team dorm.

In essence, he told his bunch to keep their heads up, that they had played well in the defeat and to believe in themselves as they always did.

PawSox once again in the mix for playoff spot

August 6, 2014

PAWTUCKET – Manager Kevin Boles doesn’t pretend to be unaware of the fact that his Pawtucket Red Sox are now in the throes of a pennant race, something that in recent years has been an annual staple of August baseball around these parts.

“There’s a buzz and definitely aware what’s going on. They want to accomplish some special things,” Boles said. “We’re here to develop winning ballplayers.”

August 5th

Collette Vacations ready to tackle Northeast Regional field

August 5, 2014

PAWTUCKET – When reached early Sunday afternoon, Jim Mello admitted he's had a lot on his mind over the previous few days.

Ever since his Collette Vacations Post 79 squadron captured its first-ever R.I. American Legion Senior Division Tournament title with back-to-back 8-2 and 9-6 victories over the Newport-area's R&R Construction last Wednesday at McCarthy Field, he's had to prepare loads of paperwork.

In fact, he mentioned he was still trying to complete all of the necessary forms on his kitchen table.

Cumberland American absorbs first loss of summer

August 5, 2014

BRISTOL, Conn.  –  Cumberland American’s All-Stars had inflicted a lot of pain to opponents with three walk-off hits on their road here to the A. Bartlett Giamatti Little League Leadership Training Center.

On Tuesday afternoon, they shockingly were on the receiving end.

August 4th

PawSox catcher always seems to have a 'Spring' in his step

August 4, 2014

PAWTUCKET – Matt Spring is a career minor-league catcher who gets it.

You won’t find his name mentioned in the same way as acclaimed youngsters Christian Vazquez and Blake Swihart, two under-25 prospects who are viewed by many as potential catchers-of-the-future for the rebuilding Boston Red Sox.

Meanwhile, Spring sits three months shy of his 30th birthday, and is in the midst of his first extended stay at the Triple-A level with the PawSox.

Cumberland American shows no mercy again

August 4, 2014

BRISTOL, Conn.  –  Lightning struck twice for the Cumberland American All-Stars on Monday night.

After pasting Massachusetts champion Barnstable, 25-5, in its opener on Saturday, the bat-savvy Rhode Islanders strolled to a 10-0 “mercy-rule” victory over Goffstown, N.H. in another pool-play contest of what is becoming a terrific Little League New England Regional Tournament at Breen Field.

August 3rd

Official: KR Baseball Academy coming to Lincoln

August 3, 2014

LINCOLN – The association of Ken Ryan’s name and this particular dateline can only signify that KR Baseball Academy is officially coming to town.

 

Everything became certified this past Friday when Ryan signed a lease to occupy space for his indoor baseball facility on 100 Higginson Ave. located in the Lonsdale section of town. A Pawtucket native who pitched for both the PawSox and Red Sox, Ryan hopes to open the doors either the first or second week in October.

 

Importance of good sportsmanship not lost on Cumberland American

August 3, 2014

BRISTOL, Conn. -- On the evening of Thursday, July 24, after the Cumberland American All-Stars had clinched the R.I. Little League Major Division (11-12) Tournament championship with a thrilling 8-7 victory over gritty Cranston Western, manager Dave Belisle’s crew lined up for the usual post-game handshakes with its foe.

Gary Bucci’s players couldn’t have been all too happy with the loss, but both teams’ athletes  were seen high-fiving each other. It was the consummate exhibition of sportsmanship at its best.

August 1st

Cumberland American set to take on New England's best

August 1, 2014

BRISTOL, Conn.  – Cumberland American All-Stars mentor Dave Belisle received a phone call from pitching coach Matt Wright late Tuesday night, and it had everything to do with the Massachusetts Little League state championship game between Barnstable and Holden.

Wright had good reason to make the 75-plus-mile trek to Beverly; after all, he wanted to scout the contest, as the victor would face Belisle’s bunch in the opener of the New England Regional Tournament at 2 p.m., Saturday at the A. Bartlett Giamatti Little League Training Center.

Oh Henry!: Top pitching prospect joins PawSox

August 1, 2014

PAWTUCKET — While teammates in Double-A Portland, Matt Spring had the opportunity to catch many of Henry Owens’ day-after-he-started side sessions. 

Mechanics and pitch repertoire aside, those informal bullpen outings allowed Spring to acquire a deeper sense of what makes Owens tick. Even in low-pressurized situations, the lanky left-hander still displayed a competitive zest that really wasn’t all that different when Owens took the ball for the Sea Dogs once every five days.

July 31st

R.I. Thunder Gold travel team takes top honors in national tournament

July 31, 2014


The Rhode Island Thunder Gold 12U-Needle are the 2014 PONY National Champions after the team won the PONY Fast Pitch Softball Nationals in Sterling, Va., held the week of July 18-23.
 
The team, composed of players from both Massachusetts and Rhode Island, had a phenomenal run throughout the season, with had a phenomenal run this season, with an overall record of 71-4-1.
 

July 30th

Collette Vacations sweeps R&R Construction to claim R.I. American Legion state title

July 30, 2014

WEST WARWICK -- Just before the R.I. American Legion Senior Division Tournament championship tilt began late Wednesday afternoon, skipper Jim Mello huddled his troops outside the first-base dugout and issued a few simple thoughts.

“There is no tonight if we don’t take care of business right now,” he stated. “Think about this game and what you need to do. It’s do-or-die; now go out there and have some fun.”

July 29th

Mitsmenn pitches Collette to victory in third-straight must-win game with gem against top-seeded Post 74

July 29, 2014


WEST WARWICK  –  With Collette Vacations Post 79 facing their third-straight elimination game on Tuesday, Zach Mitsmenn dazzled the tournament’s top-seeded squad for nine innings, sending home the highly-touted Senerchia Post 74 and propelling Collette into the final day of play at the R.I. American Legion Senior Division Tournament.
 

July 26th

Reflections on the Rocket: Fellow Texans Workman, Clemens treading a similar path decades apart

July 26, 2014

PAWTUCKET – For reasons no doubt discussed ad nauseam in other forums, “Rocket” Roger Clemens will not be featured during this weekend’s Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

Brandon Workman, Clemens fan, fellow Red Sox pitcher and fellow University of Texas Longhorn, hopes that changes someday.

July 22nd

KR Baseball Academy on the move

July 22, 2014


KR Baseball Academy is on the move after a successful 10-year run in Pawtucket. 
 
Though nothing is official, the owner hopes everything regarding the academy’s new Lincoln location will be signed, sealed and delivered by the middle of next week. More specifically, Ken Ryan plans to inhabit space on 100 Higginson Ave., which is situated in the Lonsdale section of town. 
 

July 21st

St. Raphael alum Gray jumps to Division I coaching ranks at Maine

July 21, 2014

The running joke between Bob Walsh and Antone Gray became a rite of spring.

Whenever Walsh’s name was linked to prospective Division I men’s basketball head coaching jobs, he would receive a reminder from a player who never seemed to stray too far from the mentor’s mind. Gray first placed the bug in Walsh’s ear during their point guard/coaching partnership at Rhode Island College. He continued to do so after his graduation in 2011.

“Even when Antone was a sophomore playing for me, he would say, ‘Don’t leave me here, don’t leave me here,” Walsh recalled.

With offense on fire, CALL awaits foe in Little League state finals

July 21, 2014

CUMBERLAND — Even dating back to last summer, skipper Dave Belisle had a feeling his Cumberland American Little League All-Stars wouldn't have much of an issue with the bats.

But even he's surprised with how his roster of 12 has produced this time around.

Consider these statistics: In four straight triumphs over Smithfield (11-3) and Lincoln (9-6) in the R.I. District IV Major Division (11-12) event, then two more against Coventry American (5-4) and Cranston Western (17-4) in the state tournament, his squad has outscored its opponents, 42-17.

July 20th

CALL pounds Cranston 17-4, moves one win from state title

July 20, 2014

 

BRISTOL  –  Sean Meers clubbed two homers, drove in five runs and scored three on Sunday as Cumberland American delivered a 17-4 mercy-rule bushwhacking of Cranston Western's best in a winners' bracket final at King Philip Little League's Roger W. Pigeon Field.