Tag Archive for baseball

7 Inducted into 2016 Class of Wesleyan Baseball Wall of Fame

The Class of 2016 Wesleyan Baseball Hall of Fame, flanked by Baseball Coach Mark Woodworth ’98 on the right and Athletic Director Mike Whalen ’83 on left: Phil Rockwell ’65, MALS ’73 P’11; Jesse Carpenter ’96; Tom Young ’59, MALS ’73; Steve Donovan ’83, Todd Mogren ’83, Christian Frattasio ’00, Kevin Rose ’78.

The Class of 2016 Wesleyan Baseball Hall of Fame, left to right, and flanked by Baseball Coach Mark Woodworth ’94 on the far left and Athletic Director Mike Whalen ’83 on the far right: Phil Rockwell ’65, MALS ’73 P’11; Jesse Carpenter ’96; Tom Young ’59, MALS ’73; Steve Donovan ’83, Todd Mogren ’83, Christian Frattasio ’00, Kevin Rose ’78.

On May 5, the Daniel Family Common was the site for the 2016 induction into the Baseball Wall of Fame.

Seven alumni, ranging in class years from 1959 to 2000 were there with family and friends to reminisce about their outstanding Wesleyan baseball careers, as well as celebrate the program for what it is accomplishing currently. Both Ken Janik ’85, who played baseball for Wesleyan, and Wesleyan Baseball Coach Mark Woodworth ’94 offered introductory remarks.

Athletic Director Michael Whalen ’83 noted the significance of these awards. “The Wesleyan baseball program has a tradition of excellence dating back to the 1950’s. The Wall-Of-Fame celebration not only brings together players from different eras in honor of outstanding baseball achievement, it connects current student-athletes with those who wore the Red and Black before them.”

The seven inductees of the 2016 Wall of Fame Class were:

Tom Young ’59, captain and catcher for the ’59 team that went 24-4-1 in his junior and senior years and wont two Little Three titles. He was a longtime baseball coach at the Berkshire School, where the field is named after him;

Phil Rockwell ’65, P’11, left-handed pitcher and co-captain for the Cards and part of the two Little Three champion teams, including a 14-2 squad in 1964. As a junior and senior, He dominated against Williams and Amherst and also beat Yale. He was the 1965 McNaughten Award winner and played for the Cape Cod League;

Kevin Rose ’78, P’19, who, as a senior, was named First-Team All New England as a senior. The 1979 MacNaughten Award winner, he played in the Cape Cod League as well as professionally baseball with the Newark Bears;

Steve Donovan ’83 graduated as Wesleyan’s all-time hit leader. A centerfielder, he helped lead his squad to two Little Three titles, three ECAC tournament appearances, and had a 24-6 record in his senior year;

Todd Mogren ’83, a pitcher, was named First-Team All-New England as a senior and still holds two Wesleyan records—for appearances in a season (20) and career innings (289.1). The 1983 MacNaughten Award winner, he won two Little Three titles and pitched the Cardinals to victory over Yale in both his junior and senior years.

Jesse Carpenter ’96, who has the highest single-season battling average in Wesleyan history, at .446, was named First-Team All-New England in 1995. A third baseman, his career batting average of .379 is the third all-time in school history. His three hits and home runs in the New England NCAA championship game catapulted the Cardinals to the 1994 World Series. His teams won four Little Three titles. He was the 1996 MacNaughten Award Winner.

Christian Frattasio ’00, a four-year starter for the Cardinals, was a left-handed hitting infielder who graduated fourth all-time in career hits with 146. He was named First Team All-NESCAC as a senior and led his squad to a Little Three title. He currently serves as president of the Friends of Wesleyan Baseball.

At the end of the evening, Woodworth observed: “What a great night! To discover what Wesleyan Baseball means to people, all you had to do was be in the room and feel the energy of 150 people connecting the past, present and future. For alums, family, friends, current players, parents and coaches, it was a celebration and affirmation of everyone who has been impacted by the Wesleyan Baseball program.”

Also applauding the seven were baseball team faculty sponsor Professor of Government Guilio Gallaroti, and James van B. Dresser ’62, trustee  and board chair emeritus, for whom Dresser Diamond was named and dedicated in 2010. Members of the 2016 Wesleyan Baseball team were also there to applaud the Cardinal heroes from previous eras.

The Wall of Fame was begun in 2014. The 14 previous inductees included Pete Kostacopoulos, who coached the cardinals from 1974 through 2001, and Norm Daniels, who coached from 1941 through 1973. Rob Sansone ’79, an alumnus of Wesleyan Baseball, sponsored the 2016 Wall of Fame dinner.

Click here for information on the 2014 and 2015 awards.

Wesleyan, Yale Reenact Historic Baseball Game on 150th Anniversary of Event

Wesleyan University and Yale University reenacted a historic baseball game at Yale on the 150th anniversary of the event. The two teams met on Sept. 30, 1865 to inaugurate intercollegiate competition at their respective landmark institutions. Wesleyan was founded in 1831 while Yale, the fourth oldest institution of higher learning in the nation, dates back to 1701. (Photo by John Van Vlack)

Wesleyan reenacted a historic baseball game Sept. 26. Pictured is the 2015-16 squad at Yale University. (Photo by John Van Vlack)

Wesleyan, founded in 1831, and Yale University, founded in 1701, are both celebrating the 150th anniversary of baseball at their respective colleges this year as the two met on Sept. 30, 1865 to inaugurate intercollegiate competition. A lot has changed since then, on and off the diamond, but for one night, students and alumni celebrated the rich history of these two prestigious programs and the great game of baseball.

On Sept. 26, to commemorate that first contest, the two clubs squared-off wearing throwback uniforms in an exhibition game at Yale Field. The idea for the game was spawned more than five years ago when Wesleyan head coach Mark Woodworth ’94 and Yale head coach John Stuper talked about playing the game while together at a summer camp.

At left, Yale University head coach John Stupe and Wesleyan head coach Mark Woodworth welcomed Fay Vincent to the reenactment game. Vincent served as the Commissioner of Major League Baseball from 1989 to 1992.

At left, Yale University head coach John Stupe and Wesleyan head coach Mark Woodworth ’94 welcomed Fay Vincent to the reenactment game. Vincent served as the Commissioner of Major League Baseball from 1989 to 1992.

“It seemed really important to me to celebrate the great traditions of both of these historic programs,” Woodworth said. “Both schools have been at the forefront of establishing college baseball and we are excited to recognize all the alums and all the players that have been a part of it.”

More than 50 Wesleyan baseball alumni attended the game at Yale.

The Cardinals hoped for a better outcome than the 39-13 final score of the original contest, concluded after just eight innings so Wesleyan could make it back home on the last train of the day. That game lasted 3:05. In the 150th anniversary contest, Wesleyan exacted its revenge with a 6-3, 10-inning victory.

Woodworth and Stuper both made opening comments in the ceremony,

3 Wesleyan Baseball Players Sign Professional Contracts

Three key players in Wesleyan baseball’s fantastic run over the last three years have signed professional baseball contracts this summer. Gavin Pittore ’16 signed a free-agent contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers; alumnus Nick Cooney ’15 signed a contract with the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks in the independent American Association; and Donnie Cimino ’15 was drafted in the 37th round by the Chicago Cubs.

“This is a thrilling achievement for Wesleyan baseball,” said Head Coach Mark Woodworth. “For three great young men to achieve at an elite level academically, while simultaneously becoming world-class athletes

Gavin Pittore ’16 is Playing in the Prestigious Cape Cod Baseball League this Summer

Gavin Pittore pitching for Wesleyan in Spring 2015.

Gavin Pittore pitching for Wesleyan in Spring 2015. (Photo by Brian Katten ’79)

In this News @ Wesleyan story, we speak with Gavin Pittore of the Class of 2016. This summer, Pittore played with the Bourne Braves of the prestigious Cape Cod Baseball League (CCBL), the foremost of the dozen or so wooden-bat summer collegiate baseball leagues sanctioned by Major League Baseball. A second-team all-NESCAC pick in 2015, Pittore posted a 7-2 record with a 1.54 ERA and seven complete games over his 10 starts during Wesleyan’s 30-11 baseball season. Pittore had 12 relief appearances for the Braves (22-20-2 overall, playoff semifinalist), throwing 17 innings while giving up a mere eight hits and no earned runs with 17 strikeouts and a 1-1 record. He was chosen as one of nine pitchers for the West squad in the annual Friendly’s Cape Cod League All-Star Game that was played in Wareham Sat., July 25, won by the East, 1-0. Pittore pitched a scoreless inning in that contest. Five days later (July 30) he was signed as a free agent by the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Q: You have accomplished perhaps every college player’s summer dream of playing in the Cape Cod League. Can you describe how you prepared for and earned an opportunity for a spot on one of the 10 teams?

A: Playing in the Cape Cod Baseball League is definitely a dream come true for me. I’ve always been familiar with the league, but not until relatively recently did I think I would have a chance of playing there. I played on the Cape last year and really got to understand what it was about. My sophomore year at Wesleyan was filled with growing experiences and many obstacles, which definitely prepared me for the mental and physical challenges presented by playing a summer on the Cape. One thing I took away from two years of trying to get into the league is that patience is key. As a sophomore, I was very anxious to be placed in a league and [Wesleyan Head] Coach [Mark] Woodworth made sure to emphasize the fact that as long as I pitched well in front of the right people, I would end up where I belonged. I took his advice and went to the annual tryout for the Cape League after both my sophomore and junior years. Both years I was signed to a temporary contract, both of which luckily turned into permanent contracts. Listening to my coaches and sticking with my daily routine prepared me to play in such a prestigious league.

Q: As a member of the Bourne Braves, you are the only Division III pitcher on a staff of some 17 hurlers. Some are from Division I powerhouses like LSU, Illinois and Notre Dame. How do you feel throwing alongside players from such high-powered programs?

A: It definitely is intimidating at first. There is a big adjustment, especially mentally, going from playing Division III baseball to facing lineups that are essentially all college all-star teams. Similarly, it is difficult to adjust to being surrounded by players that come from such storied programs.The first few weeks everyone is still getting to know everyone else and starting to understand where everyone fits in, so it was important for me to prove that I belonged. After a couple successful outings, I no longer viewed myself as D3 guy playing amongst SEC, Big 10, and ACC players, but rather just another member of the Bourne Braves. At the same time, it is an honor to be competing with and getting to know such talented and successful guys. It’s been a privilege getting to know and getting to learn from the 2015 Bourne Braves pitching staff.

Cimino ’15, Baseball Team Featured in Courant

The Hartford Courant profiled two-sport athlete Donnie Cimino ’15, a member of the stellar Wesleyan baseball team that recently reached the NCAA tournament for the second consecutive year. Cimino, center fielder and team captain for baseball, is also a defensive back and two-year captain on the football team.

“It’s emotional,” Cimino, one of nine seniors on the team, told the Courant, “because everything comes to an end. It’s been such a journey, four years, and we experienced a lot of success. When I got here, there wasn’t a winning attitude or a winning culture. We [Class of 2015] wanted to change that as freshmen. We looked at each other, saw a talented class and great group. We worked really hard to get where we are.”

The baseball team celebrated 30 victories this season, just one shy of the program record of 31 it posted last year. Both seasons, the team qualified for the NCAA Tournament. The program’s record over the last three seasons is 88-39-1, with its first two NESCAC championships coming this year and last.

“What you’ve seen is a product of great people, the result being incredible individual and team success,” said coach Mark Woodworth ’94, who has completed his 14th year as coach. “But what I’m most happy about is that this is just a springboard for what they’re going to do in the future. You get great people around you everywhere — players, coaches, trainers, parents, athletic director, president — and great stuff starts happening. And now they’ll go on to be great husbands, fathers and sons.”