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July 4, 2015 - 12:25pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Kiwanis Club, 5K, batavia, sports.

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Nick Guarino won this morning's Kiwanis Club 5K with a time of 16:20. The first-place woman runner was Kimberly Mills with a time of 19:56.

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July 4, 2015 - 9:23am
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in baseball, sports, muckdogs.

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The Muckdogs were able to win their first series of the year behind 19-year-old Jordan Holloway’s strong start.

The 6-foot-4-inch righty kept the Mahoning Valley Scrappers off balance all night in route to a 7-4 Muckdog victory.

Most of the young players on the Muckdogs are not used to the grind of playing every day. With the unexpected day off on Wednesday because of rain, the Muckdogs look to have gotten some much needed time away because they are playing much better baseball as of late.

“When you aren’t playing as well as we were playing, time off of the field always helps,” Manager Angel Espada said. “Hopefully it helped us, but for some reason they are playing much better."

In the first inning, Holloway was able to work around a one-out walk to Scrappers left-fielder Ka’ai Tom by striking out DH Emmanuel Tapia and getting Nathan Winfrey to fly-out to left.

Holloway was able to work a perfect second inning while only throwing five pitches. The only trouble of the game for Holloway came in the third inning.

Connor Marabell led off the inning with a single and was moved to second by a Silento Sayles groundout to second.

Willi Castro doubled to right, scoring Marabell. Tom doubled, setting up runners at second and third with one out.

Holloway struck out Winfrey, but he was able to advance to first when catcher Blake Anderson couldn’t corral the loose ball in the dirt. Castro scored from third.

Holloway got out of the inning by getting Li-Jen Chu to fly-out to leftfield.

“We are talking about a 19-year-old kid who is learning how to pitch," Espada said. "It’s only his second year in pro ball and he is handling it pretty well. It’s just one day at a time, one start at a time with a young guy like him.”

Just like most of the season so far, the top of the Muckdogs lineup has carried them.

Anfernee Seymour and Stone Garrett combined to go 7-for-8 with four runs scored and three RBIs to lead the way for Batavia.

The scoring for the Muckdogs started in the first inning when Seymour knocked a single. Garrett beat out an infield single to short to set up first and second with one out.

A Korey Dunbar groundout to shortstop moved both runners up 90 feet. Seymour scampered home after a ball got by Chu, making it 1-0.

Batavia plated three more runs in the second all with two outs.

Ninth place hitter Joe Chavez and Seymour worked two-out walks. Giovanny Alfonzo doubled, scoring both Chavez and Seymour.

Garrett laced a ball in the gap for a triple, scoring Alfonzo making the game 4-0.

The Scrappers changed pitchers, bringing in 6-foot-6-inch James Stokes, who struck out Dunbar to end the threat.

Seymour would again be involved in Batavia’s scoring efforts in the fourth.

The speedy shortstop singled and stole second, even though the Scrappers called for a pitchout. He stole third and dashed home after the throw got away from the Scrappers' third baseman.

Seymour alone made the game 5-2. But the Muckdogs were not done.

In the sixth inning, Galvi Moscat singled up the middle, followed by Seymour and Alfonzo both getting hit by a pitch.

The hot hitting Garrett stepped into the plate and squeezed a ball down the first base line scoring two.

“They have been swinging well the whole season,” Espada said about Seymour and Garrett.

LJ Brewster and Steve Farnworth finished the game up for Holloway without allowing a run and only allowing three hits over three innings of combined work.

Garrett finished the day going 4-for-5 with three RBIs and two doubles. Seymour was 3-for-3 with four runs scored.

Holloway pitched six innings while striking out five and walking two in his first win of the season.

The Muckdogs improve to 3-11 on the season and look to continue their moment going into this weekend's games in West Virginia.

Batavia returns to Dwyer Stadium on Wednesday, July 8, against the Auburn Doubledays. 

Photos by Steve Ognibene.

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July 3, 2015 - 8:47am
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in baseball, sports, muckdogs.

After being rained out on Wednesday night, the Batavia Muckdogs and the Mahoning Valley Scrappers met in two, seven-inning games on Thursday.

Cody Poteet, a fourth-round pick out of UCLA, started for the Muckdogs in game one.

Poteet opened strong by retiring the side in the first inning on just nine pitches. While Poteet looked confident, his defense let him down in the second.

Nathan Winfrey led off the inning with a single and would quickly move to second on a failed pickoff attempt to first.

Winfrey scooted to third on a ground out to second by Scrappers' third baseman Austin Fisher.

With two outs, Winfrey scored after the Muckdogs' third baseman threw a David Armendariz ground ball into the dirt trying to throw him out at first.

Poteet regrouped and fanned the next batter to end the inning.

The Muckdogs were able to score three runs in the fourth after some great situational baseball.

Eric Fisher started off the inning by smashing the first pitch he saw right back up the middle. Ryan Cranmer drew a walk, setting up first and second with no outs.

Brandon Rawe executed a perfect sacrifice bunt, moving Fisher to third and Cranmer to second.

Ninth-place hitter and left field Cameron Newell connected on a fly ball deep enough to center to score Fisher from third making it 1-1.

Leadoff hitter Anfernee Seymour ripped a ball just inside first base to score Cranmer.

The lighting-quick shortstop scored from second when Giovanny Alfonzo singled, making it 3-1.

Nestor Bautista replaced Poteet in the fourth and scattered three hits through the final four innings of the game.

Batavia added another run in the fifth when Brad Haynal doubled and then moved to third on a passed ball. He then scored on another passed ball by the Scrappers.

With solid pitching and timely hitting, the Muckdogs avoided the worst start in club history since 1953 by winning the first game of the doubleheader with a final score of 4-1.

The teams headed to the clubhouse to get ready for the next game and all the Muckdogs offense must have stayed in the locker room.

Three Scrappers pitchers were able to hold the Muckdogs to only two hits the whole game.

Jose Zapata got the start for the Scrappers in the second game and allowed only one hit while striking out three over his three innings of work.

Dominic DeMasi took over in relief in the fourth and allowed a mere one hit over three innings of work.

Billy Strode notched the save in the seventh for the Scrappers, working around a two-out error to keep the shutout intact.

Mahoning Valley scored all they needed in the sixth inning.

Silento Saylas started the inning with an infield single and then stole second. He advanced to third on a Willi Castro sacrifice bunt.

Saylas scored on a Fisher double just three pitches later. Winfrey drew a walk and Li-Jen Chu singled home Fisher making it 2-0.

The Scrappers added another insurance run in the seventh making it 3-0.

The Muckdogs got a runner on base in the bottom of the seventh but were unable to string any hits together.

The loss dropped the Muckdogs to 2-11 while the Scrappers improve to 5-8.   

Batavia currently sits in last place in the Pinckney Division and 10 games back of the first-place Williamsport Crosscutters.

The Muckdogs will finish up their short three-game home stand on Friday. The game is the annual Independence Day celebration and like all Friday night games, it will have fireworks following the conclusion of the game.

First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

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July 2, 2015 - 12:11pm

Horsemen and racing fans are reminded that post time for the Genesee County Fair races to be held at Batavia Downs on July 16 have been moved to 5 p.m. to avoid any construction issues of the new hotel that will be located on the Batavia Downs property adjacent to the racing paddock.

The entry box closes at 10 a.m. on Monday (July 13). To enter please call Racing Secretary Donna Kerr at 716-338-5387.

Anyone with questions should contact Director/GM of Live Racing Todd Haight at 585-343-3750, ext. 322.

July 1, 2015 - 7:50pm
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in sports, baseball, muckdogs.

The Muckdogs’ game tonight against the Mahoning Valley Scrappers was postponed due to rain.

The teams will play two, seven-inning games tomorrow, Thursday July 2. First pitch for game one will be at 5:05 p.m. with the second game to directly follow the conclusion of game one.

All tickets for tonight’s game (7/1) can be redeemed for any future home game. 

July 1, 2015 - 3:15pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Announcements, pembroke.

A 3 vs. 3 Basketball Tournament will be held for boys on Saturday, July 11, in the Pembroke High School Gym. Registration is due on Monday July 6. Cost is $40 per team; there's a two-game guarantee.

There will be three divisions:

  • Boys entering fourth-fifth grade;
  • Boys entering sixth-seventh grade;
  • Boys entering eighth-ninth grade.

First-place teams in each division will win a trophy. Teams will be placed in the division appropriate for the oldest member of the team.

If you have any questions call Matt Shay at (585) 610-3755. E-mail: mshay@pembroke.k12.ny.us

The registration form includes: the division; team name; e-mail for contact person; phone number for contact person; name of five players on team, grade they are entering and school.

Proceeds benefit Pembroke Boys Basketball. If paying by check, please make it out to "Pembroke Boys Basketball." MUST BE POSTMARKED BY JULY 6TH!

Mail to Matt Shay, 2385 Richley Road, Corfu, NY 14036.

Here are the tournament rules:

  1. Possession of the ball at the start of the game will be determined by coin flip.

  2. Field goals are worth 2 and 3 points.

  3. A free throw is worth 1 point.

  4. All games will be played with a 18 minute RUNNING clock.

  5. First team to 21 points or team leading after 18 minutes will be winner .

  6. If score is tied after 18 minutes 1 player from each team will shoot a free throw to determine winner, if both players make or miss, 2 more players will shoot and so on.

  7. Shooting fouls will result in 2 ft’s, if the player makes the basket on the shooting foul the basket will count and the player will shoot 1 ft. A shooting foul on a 3 pt field goal attempt will result in 3 fts.

  8. After a ft the ball always goes to defensive team.

  9. Non-shooting fouls will be recorded and will result in the ball being taken out at take-out line.

  10. On the 5th total foul the team will shoot 1 ft.

  11. When checking the ball or shooting a free throw the individual has 10 seconds to check or shoot the ball. Violation of this will result in a turnover.

  12. Unsportsmanlike conduct toward opponents, officials, fans, etc., will result in disqualification of player.

  13. Teams must have at least two egistered players to start game but can finish a game with one, if a player is hurt or disqualified.

  14. There are NO timeouts.Play can be stopped by official for injury but clock will continue to run.

  15. Substitutions can be made at any dead ball.

  16. Jump Balls go to the defense.

  17. On all dead balls the ball must be checked by a player standing behind the back line. The ball must be passed in.

June 28, 2015 - 5:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Silver Shoe Farm, batavia, agriculture, horses, carriage driving, sports.

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Silver Shoe Farm, on Pratt Road, Batavia, hosted today its 8th annual carriage driving competition, drawing drivers from throughout the region.

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June 27, 2015 - 11:03am
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

Batavia Downs Gaming is pleased to announce that Brittney Ohol will go to post as the new parade marshal for the upcoming summer-fall meet.

Ohol grew up around harness racing while being raised by her grandparents (Mike and Brenda Ohol) who both competed on the Western New York circuit for more than 30 years. The 21-year-old Lockport High School graduate attended Medaille College for vet tech before deciding to return to harness racing as a full-time career.

After getting her trainer’s and qualifying driver’s licenses, Ohol started her own stable and now owns and races three horses. Besides conventional competition, she has also been involved with racing under saddle (RUS) in New York State.

Ohol started to learn the art of outriding from Wendy Ross at Tioga Downs in 2011 and has now worked with her on and off for over four years. In 2014, Ohol took the position full time at Rosecroft Raceway in Maryland. But after the meet ended there, she returned home because it was too far away from family.

When the job at Batavia Downs came available this year, the call went out to Brittney Ohol because she was a natural fit and the timing was right for her as well.

“I love having the opportunity to take this position at Batavia Downs. It’s close to my family and my home base where I know everybody so it makes it so much easier. I want to remain in the business as long as harness racing is around,” Ohol said. “I have two good horses named Paco and Cody and they allow me to do my job as well as I can. I am really looking forward to the upcoming meet to get started.”

“Brittney Ohol has a harness racing pedigree and has been a part of the racing community here at the Downs since she was a child,” said Todd Haight, director/general manager of Live Racing at Batavia Downs.

“Her abilities as a horsewoman combined with her passion for the sport makes her the perfect fit for this job and ensures high-quality assistance to all the horsemen who race here every night. We are very happy to have her on board.”

The 69th season of live harness racing at America’s oldest lighted harness track begins on Monday, July 27 with a 6:35 p.m. post time.

June 27, 2015 - 10:56am
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

Press release:

Horsemen should be advised that stall applications for the 69th season of live harness racing at Batavia Downs Gaming are now available at the track’s Web site (http://www.bataviadownsgaming.com/live-racing/wp-content/uploads/2015/04...) or can be picked up in person at the second floor reception desk inside America’s oldest lighted harness track. All stall requests must be received by July 10.

For the convenience of western New York horsemen who are currently racing at Buffalo Raceway, these applications are also available at the Western New York Harness Horsemen’s Association office located on the backstretch of that track.

The 2015 Batavia Downs season features 70 race dates and includes eight matinee cards. The annual summer-fall meet commences on Monday, July 27 and concludes on Saturday, Dec. 12.

Live racing will be presented on a Wednesday, Friday and Saturday night basis except for Saturday Oct. 31 (Breeders Cup day) when racing will be conducted at 1:15 p.m.

Aside from that three-day rotation, five Sunday afternoon programs will be held beginning on Aug. 2 and continuing through the end of the month.

Monday racing includes opening night and holiday programs on Labor Day and Columbus Day.

Tuesday racing begins Sept. 15.

The season begins with evening post times of 6:35 p.m. and matinee post times of 1:15 p.m.

New this year, Tuesday post time moves to 4:30 p.m. while beginning on Oct. 21 all evening programs for the remainder of the season go off at 6:15 p.m., with an anticipated extra race each night being carded.

Stall applications can be mailed to the race office at 8315 Park Road, Batavia, NY 14020, Attn: Joe Zambito or faxed to 585-343-2451.

The backstretch opens for tack on July 19. Horses may begin arriving in the barn area on July 21.

June 24, 2015 - 11:12pm
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in baseball, sports, muckdogs.

History was made on Tuesday night as three Muckdog pitchers combined to throw the first perfect game in club history and only the fourth all-time in the New York-Penn League.

After his disappointing opening day start, Gabriel Castellanos was ready to right the ship and get Batavia its first win of the season.

The Mahoning Valley Scrappers came into the game hitting .256 as a team, good for sixth in the New York-Penn League.

Castellanos was sharp, confident and had all his pitches going to keep the hard-hitting Scrappers off balance all night.

“I was able to execute all my pitches, it was a team effort,” he said.

Castellanos would need just 35 pitches to get through the first nine batters of the game. Of the first nine batters he faced, Castellanos was able to strikeout six of them, four of which were looking.

In his previous start against the Auburn Doubledays, Castellanos only made it through three and two-thirds innings while allowing five runs on five hits. On Tuesday it was a different story.

After striking out the side in third, Castellanos would strike out two of three batters in the fourth and fifth innings, bringing his game total to 10 strikeouts.

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Gabriel Castellanos poses with his game ball after the Muckdogs complete their first perfect game in club history on Tuesday night. Photo taken by Stephen Ognibene. 

“He had all his pitches going. He threw strikes and got ahead of hitters and finished them,” Manager Angel Espada said.

If there was a moment in the game where the perfect game was in doubt, it was definitely in the sixth inning.

D’vone McClure would fly out to center to begin the inning. Nate Winfrey, who has yet to collect a hit this season, was able to work the count to 0-3.

Instead of making Castellanos throw a strike, Winfrey hacked at the 0-3 pitch and flew out to centerfielder Stone Garrett.

Castellanos would strike out Silento Sayles to finish the inning.

Heading into the seventh inning, Castellanos had only thrown 71 pitches, but being it's so early in the season and the fact that it's minor league baseball, many were wondering how long they would let him go.

Castellanos would again work a perfect seventh inning, striking out Mark Mathias and putting his final tally at 12 strikeouts on 86 pitches.

“That’s the minor leagues. We have pitching counts. We have caps on innings,” Espada said.

“He gave us his all and we pushed him to as far as we could.”

Brett Lilek would make his season debut in the eighth by striking out the side. Lilek’s first batter he faced was no walk in the park.

Scrapper DH Anthony Santander, who is hitting .550 this season, led off the eighth inning and seemed out matched by 6’4” lefty. Lilek was able to punch him out on four pitches.

Steve Farnworth came in for the save in the ninth, but it was definitely not a drama-free ninth inning.

McClure would lead off the inning by drilling the second pitch he saw toward the gap between first and second. First baseman Eric Fisher was able to tip it with his glove toward second; Giovanny Alfonzo was able to scamper to pick it up and throw it to Franworth who was covering first.

Farnworth would strike out Winfrey and then finish the game by getting Sayles to ground out to shortstop.

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First baseman Eric Fisher (29) stretches to catch a ball in the bottom of the ninth inning while Scrappers left-fielder Silento Sayles (9) runs to first. Photo taken by Stephen Ognibene. 

“It’s not easy to come out of the bullpen and do what they did,” Espada said.

Batavia’s lone run of the game came in the second inning when Korey Dunbar would double, followed by a Taylor Munden double. Dunbar would score from second making it 1-0 and all the runs the Muckdog pitchers would need.

Dunbar would finish the game 2-for-2 with a double and Anfernee Seymour would go 2-for-4 in the win.

Each hitter for the Scrappers ended the game with at least one strikeout. 

“You can’t describe it,” Espada said. “It came at a great moment for this group of kids.”

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The Muckdogs celebrate the perfect game and thier first win on Tuesday night. Photo taken by Stephen Ognibene. 

The Muckdogs are on the road for their next six games but return to Dwyer for a three-game series against Mahoning Valley starting on July 1 at 7:05 p.m.

June 24, 2015 - 9:48pm
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in sports, baseball, muckdogs.

Not much has gone right for the Batavia Muckdogs thus far in 2015, but that all changed earlier tonight against the Mahoning Valley Scrappers (3-3).

Three pitchers combined for the first perfect game in club history: 27 up, 27 down.

The perfect game is the first win of the season for Batavia (1-5).

Stay tuned for a full recap of the game.

June 23, 2015 - 1:57am
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in baseball, sports, muckdogs.

If the first four games are going to be indicative of the Muckdogs 2015 season, Batavia players and fans are going to be in for a long season.

Coming off a three-game series against Auburn, where Batavia was swept, the Muckdogs were looking forward to welcoming the Mahoning Valley Scrappers, an affiliate of the Cleveland Indians, to Dwyer Stadium on Monday night.

Besides their opening day shutout, the Muckdogs have had little problem scoring runs and that trend continued against the Scrappers.

In the Muckdogs first at-bat leadoff hitter Anfernee Seymour was hit by the first pitch he saw. The speedy shortstop quickly stole second for his third stolen base of the season.

He would then move to third on a past ball and later score on a ground out by Giovanny Alfonzo. Hot hitting Stone Garrett would then blast the first pitch he saw over the outfield fence for his second homerun of the season.

The bats continued to stay hot for the Muckdogs in second when Galvi Moscat would single but move to second on a throwing error by the pitcher.

After a ground out by Taylor Munden, Travis Brewster would work a walk and set up first and third with one out.

Moscat would score after a single by Seymour. Brewster would steal third and quickly score after another past ball making the score 4-1.

Garrett would then hit a SAC fly, scoring Seymour. Alfonzo, who was walked, would also score in the second. Before the Scrappers could even catch their breath the score was 6-1.

If we learned anything from watching these Muckdogs, it is that no lead is ever safe.

In the top of third, Mark Mathias started off the inning with a bloop single. DH Anthony Sanatander would then connect on his second double of the game.

Catcher Li-Jen Chu would follow with a double of his own, scoring both runners and cutting the Batavia lead to 6-3.

The scored remained at 6-3 until the fifth inning. The Scrappers would plate five runs during the frame.

Mathias would start off the inning with a leadoff single. Santander, who already has two homeruns on the young season, would connect on his third homerun as he blasted one over the left field fence that still hasn’t landed yet.

Sicnarf Loopstock, who replaced starting first baseman Emmanuel Tapia in the fifth inning, would work a walk. After a Nathan Lukes' infield single, both runners would move up 90 feet after a past ball.

With runners on third and second and two outs, D’vone McClure would single. Both runners would score making it 7-6.

Ninth-place hitter Ka’ai Tom would rope a double, which would score McClure and increase the Scrappers lead to 8-6.

The Muckdogs would tie the game back up in the sixth when Brewster and Seymour would hit back-to-back singles and move to third and second on yet another past ball.

Alfonzo then hit a high chopper to the shortstop Willi Castro. Brewster would score easily and Seymour would be right behind him. Alfonzo was caught in a rundown between first and second and was tag out but not before the score was tied 8-8.

In the seventh inning what could go wrong, went wrong for the Muckdogs.

Leurys De La Rosa, a right-handed relief pitcher, would have trouble finding the plate and did not get any help from his teammates in the field.

After all the smoke had settled, seven runs had scored. De La Rosa threw 35 pitches in the inning. He walked two, hit one, had a baulk and allowed four hits. There also were three errors made in the field, one by Seymour at shortstop and two by third baseman Munden. 

“It just goes back to keep working hard,” Manager Angel Espada would say about the error-filled play in the field.

“Come out early, take ground balls and just regroup and focus on what you are doing. It just comes down to that,” he said.

Down 15-8, the Muckdogs were able to get the game within reach when Garrett would hit his second homerun of the game and third on the season in the eighth inning.

Before the Garrett home run, Seymour and Alfonzo would each reach base with two-out singles. Garrett would then drive the Ryan Perez pitch over the centerfield wall making it 15-11.

“They are two big pieces of our team and two big pieces of our organization,” Espada said about Seymour and Garrett.

“The tools are there, they just got to keep playing the game,” he said.

The Muckdogs would threaten in the ninth when they would get the bases loaded and the tying run at the plate, but Seymour would ground out to shortstop and the come back would come up short, falling to the Scrappers by the score of 15-11. 

“When you are in this situation you have to have a short memory. You have to come ready to go tomorrow,” Espada said.

Seymour would finish the game 3-for-6 with three singles, four runs scored and a RBI. Garrett had a huge day at the plate where he collected five RBIs on three hits, two of which were homeruns.

Out of the ninth-place spot in the lineup, Brewster was able to go 3-for-4 with a double and two runs scored for the Muckdogs.

Brock Hartson was the winning pitcher for the Scrappers while De La Rosa took the loss.

Nick Fuller pitched two scoreless innings in the eighth and ninth for Batavia. He struck out three while only allowing two hits. He has seven strikeouts on the season.

The Muckdogs will once again try for their first victory of the season on Tuesday against the Scrappers. Game time is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

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June 21, 2015 - 2:39pm
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in baseball, sports, muckdogs.

After being shutout on opening night, the Muckdogs were back in action on Saturday night against the Auburn Doubledays.

In a game of ups and downs, the Muckdogs ultimately lost a tough one by the score of 9- 5 in 10 innings.

The scoring began in the bottom of the second inning when Muckdog catcher Blake Anderson singled with two outs. Giovanny Alfonzo would walk setting up first and second for Galvi Moscat.

Moscat would hit a hard ground ball back up the middle. Anderson scored from second but Alfonzo was thrown out trying to move to third, ending the inning.

The Doubledays would respond right away in the top of the third inning.

After getting through the first two innings unscathed, Batavia starting pitching, Nick White, would run into trouble in the third.

Auburn’s Conor Keniry would hit a lead off triple and would later score on an Ian Sagdal sacrifice fly making it 1-1. But the Doubledays were not done.

Leadoff hitter Byran Mejia and Matthew Page would both hit solo home runs making the score 3-1.

Unlike on opening night where the Muckdogs seemed to lose focus after they got down early, they responded right away in the bottom of the third.

Leftfielder Kyle Barrett would start off the inning with a walk and would move to second on a ground out to first by Anfernee Seymour. Barrett would then score on a RBI triple by Stone Garrett making it 3-2.

With the infield playing in, Eric Fisher was able to single and scoring Garrett from third and tying the game at 3-3.

Ryan Cranmer would hit a groundball to the pitcher, Jefrey Rodriguez and in an attempt to start a double play, he threw the ball in the dirt to the second baseball and the ball dribbled into the outfield. Fisher would move to third on the play setting up first and third with just one out for the Muckdogs.

The Muckdogs would take the lead back when Cranmer scored on a RBI single by Anderson making it 4-3. The Muckdogs were still threatening with runners on first and third but Alfonzo struck out to end the inning.

“We crawled back into the game and we battled,” Manager Angel Espada said.

The game remained at 4-3 until the seventh inning when Auburn DH, Kelvin Gutierrez would work a walk and move to third on a Luis Guzman double.

Both runners would score on a Keniry single making it 5-4.

Throughout the game, the Muckdog pitchers always had that one inning they could not get through without giving up some runs.

“It is just part of the beginning of the season. They are just trying to find their rhythm. It’s early and most of them haven’t pitched in awhile,” Espada said.

Going into the bottom of the ninth, the Muckdogs were still down 5-4 and down to their last out.

Garrett would hit a towering fly ball to leftfield that found itself landing on the other side of the fence tying the game at 5-5.

The celebration was short lived as Auburn was able to plate four runs in the top of the 10th inning, all with two outs to end Batavia’s quest for their first win of the season.

Garrett would finish the game 3-for-4 with a triple, homerun and two runs scored. Anderson was 3-for-5 with three singles and a RBI.

Cody Harris pitched three innings in relief. He only allowed two hits and walked one. Steve Farnworth got the loss as he pitched three innings, gave up four hits and all four runs in the 10th inning.

“You don’t want to lose series and you don’t want to get swept,” Espada said when talking about the importance of tomorrow’s game.

“It’s important to win tomorrow and not get swept just to give us a little bit of confidence,” he said.

The Muckdogs will try to avoid the sweep on Sunday, Father’s Day, when they face off against the Doubledays in the series finale. Game time is set for 1:05 p.m. 

June 20, 2015 - 7:00am
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in sports, baseball, muckdogs.

During the first couple weeks of a baseball season, it is very rare to see a team clicking on all cylinders. On opening night Friday, the Muckdogs came across just that in the Auburn Doubledays.

In front of a crowd of 2,004 excited and eager fans, the Muckdogs were unable to score and dropped their opening game by the score of 10-0.

From the very first inning, the Doubledays were locked in and jumped on Muckdog starting pitcher Gabriel Castellanos.

“He competed. He just wasn’t able to put any hitters away,” Head Coach Angel Espada said.

Clay Williamson started the scoring in the top of the first inning when he reached on a fielder’s choice and later scored on an RBI single by DH David Kerian.

The Doubledays plated another run in the second after first baseman Diomedes Eusebio singled with two outs and then scored on ninth-place hitter Edwin Lora’s RBI triple.

Auburn’s starting pitcher, Robbie Dickey, was sharp from the beginning.

Dickey would not let a Muckdog past second base until the third inning. In what was Batavia’s best chance at scoring all night, Anfernee Seymour singled and then stole second. The throw to second was miss played and the speedy shortstop moved to third.

Centerfielder Stone Garrett then was walked to set up first and third for the Muckdogs. Unfortunately, they were unable to plate any runs as first baseman Eric Fisher struck out to end the inning.

After the third inning the floodgates opened and the Doubledays broke the game wide open.

Behind leadoff hitter Bryan Mejia’s big night at the plate, Auburn was able to score three runs in the fourth, two runs in the fifth and another three runs in the seventh.

Mejia was 3-4 with two doubles, a single and three RBIs to lead the way for the Doubledays. Lora also started off the season hot with a triple, double and two RBIs.

Getting their only two hits of the game earlier on, it seemed after the score got out of hand the Muckdogs seemed to concede defeat at the plate.

“At this level, with young hitters, once the game gets one-sided you just try to push,” Espada said.

With starting the season off on such a low note offensively, Espada believes it is important they come back out tomorrow and get some runs on the board.

“After this type of game you want to get on the other team and put some pressure and feel some confidence,” he said.

Luis Torres got the win on the mound for Auburn. He pitched five innings of relief for Dickey. Torres keep the Muckdog hitters off balance all night. He had three strikeouts and one walk.

Picking up the loss was Castellanos as he only went three and two-thirds innings. He allowed five hits, four runs and walked two.

Although opening the season with a 10-0 defeat, Espada is still optimistic that this will be a successful 2015 campaign for the Muckdogs.

“Tomorrow’s another day and you just got to regroup. The good part about it is these guys got the jitters out.”

The Muckdogs continue their three-game series against the Doubledays tomorrow at 7:05 p.m.

Photos by Steve Ognibene.

Reliver Juan Guzman.

John Kennedy School's fourth-grade chorus singing at the seventh-inning stretch.

June 20, 2015 - 7:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in dwyer stadium, batavia, muckdogs, baseball, sports.

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Melanie Case submitted this photo of fireworks after the Muckdogs' opening night game at Dwyer Stadium. I don't think I've ever seen a better photo of fireworks at Dwyer.

June 19, 2015 - 3:20pm
posted by Kurtis Dunlap in muckdogs, baseball, sports.

At the start of every season the teams are fresh, the players are excited and the fans are restless for some baseball.

The 2015 Batavia Muckdogs season is here and there are many young players, here in Batavia, to get excited about. Highlighted below are three players the Muckdogs are counting on to produce for the upcoming season. 

Gabriel Castellanos, a lefty pitcher, will wear number 37 this year for the Muckdogs. He may seem familiar because he was on the Muckdogs roster last year.

Castellanos was a 2010 free agent signing of the Miami Marlins.

He is 6’1” and 165 pounds. The lefty pitcher started 13 games last year and had a 2-6 record. In total, he pitched 62 innings with 54 strikeouts and an opponent’s batting average of .224. He finished the season with an above average 4.65 ERA.

Castellanos, just 21 years old, will be the Muckdogs' opening day starter as the coaching staff hopes that he continues to show improvement and matures on the mound.

The next player to keep an eye out for is shortstop Anfernee Seymour.

Seymour is just 19 years old and is regarded as the fastest player in the Marlins organization.

Drafted in 2014 in the seventh round (#197 overall) he signed a contract for $400,000. This was significant because that was two times the value of that pick.

Seymour played in the outfield his whole high school career, but after trying out for the Marlins, they told him they wanted him to play in the infield.

During the 2014 season he played for the Gulf Coast Marlins. During his stint there, he played in 26 games, had 98 at-bats with a .245 batting average. He had three RBIs, 12 walks and 27 strikeouts. He also had 11 stolen bases.

Although considered to be a project by the Marlins organization, at only 19 years old and with incredible speed, the Marlins have him listed as their 26th overall prospect.

The Muckdogs' most high profile player this year will be the guy behind the plate.

Blake Anderson will catch and wear #26. He was drafted in the first round of the 2014 MLB draft. (#36 overall) He signed for $1.17 million straight out of West Lauderdale High School but was committed to play at the University of Southern Mississippi. He decided to turn pro instead.  

During his senior year he lead his team to a 4a State Championship with a .438 BA, 8 HR, 14 doubles, 40 RBIs and an OPS of .523.   

According to scouts, he has a hose of an arm and considered to be more of a defensive catcher. Some scouts said that he reminds them a lot of the Baltimore Orioles catcher Matt Weiters.

Back for his third season coaching the Muckdogs will be Angel Espada. Pitching coach and hitting coach Brendan Sagara and Rigoberto Silverio both return as well.

The Muckdogs kick off their season tonight at home against their Thruway rivals the Auburn Doubledays. Game time is set for 7:05.

Note there will be a short ceremony before the game to honor Haley, groundskeeper Don Rocks' longtime dog that passed away this past winter.

June 19, 2015 - 10:36am
posted by James Burns in Baseball Muckdogs, baseball, sports.

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The Batavia Muckdogs have their season opener tonight, at home in Dwyer Stadium against Auburn. A six-game home stand begins tonight at 7:05. There is an early afternoon game at 1:05 on Father’s Day; all other games are at 7:05 p.m. General admission is just $7 for adults.

For more information on tickets and the Muckdogs go to http://www.milb.com/index.jsp?sid=t511

Below, the Muckdags practice for the opener. 

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June 18, 2015 - 9:00am

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In its third year Genesee Kickball League has continued a tradition for adults to have some fun on the field after work. Playing at Batavia Sports Park last evening were six teams in the Spring league. 

“We have had as much as 10-12 teams in a session,” said league organizer Matt Smart. "We have two sessions, spring and summer, starting in May and depending on weather and daylight we may get in a fall league.

"Tonight’s teams were the Fireballz vs. Pitches BeCrazy, One Kick Wonders vs. Grass Kkickers, Purple Fother Mickers vs. Kermit Killers. We come up with some relevant names to the sport but it’s all for fun and then we go to our sponsors businesses afterward. 

"There are typically one to two sponsors per team and they are recognized on our team shirts. The summer league starts on July 1st."

For more information to register go to Facebook: Genesee Kickball

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June 17, 2015 - 2:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Muckdogs, baseball, sports.

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Kurtis Dunlap, a 2012 graduate of Oakfield-Alabama High School and a journalism student at the University of Missouri's Reynolds School of Journalism, will cover the Batavia Muckdogs for The Batavian this season.

He'll cover home games and write occasional features about the team and its players.

Dunlap is studying sports journalism at Missouri.

He's the oldest of three siblings and in high school played football, basketball and baseball. For three seasons, he was a batboy for the Muckdogs. 

"Someday I hope to have my own column in a newspaper where I can share all the crazy things that pop into my head," Dunlap said.

The 2015 season opens Friday.

June 16, 2015 - 11:20am
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, baseball, pembroke.

Press release:

On Thursday, the NCCAA announced the end of the year awards for Baseball with Caleb Lang taking three awards and Joey Nieves-Markee earning Honorable Mention. Lang was awarded with First-Team All-American, Player of the Year, as well as the Burbridge Award for Christian Leadership.

The awards come after Lang was named NCCAA East Region Player of the Year and Nieves-Markee made the All-East Region Team. Lang finished the 2015 campaign with a .444 batting average, 60 hits, 55 RBI, nine homeruns, 115 putouts, and only two errors from the outfield. Nieves-Markee ended his best year with a .427 batting average, 53 hits, 34 runs scored, and 16 stolen bases

Lang was also named a First Team All-American his previous two years with the Highlanders but this year was able to grab the Player of the Year award. Possibly even more impressive than that was his receiving of the Hank Burbridge Unlimited Potential Outstanding Christian Leadership Award

"To be thrown into the same conversation as Mr. Burbridge, who is highly regarded for not only baseball but for being a great man of God is amazing," said Lang after being notified of the award. "I am honored to receive this award and am very thankful that I am seen as someone who represents Christ in his actions on and off the field."

The purpose of the award is to honor the NCCAA's Outstanding Christian Baseball Player of the Year with potential Christian service through baseball. In order to be eligible for this award, a student-athlete must be at least a junior; possess and demonstrate outstanding leadership qualities; possess and demonstrates outstanding athletic ability; and possess and demonstrate a vibrant and clear Christian testimony on and off the field.

"This is one of the greatest awards that I have received thus far because it represents more than baseball; it represents the ability to change human lives," Lang continued. "I am grateful to all the people who have shown me the importance of service and I can only hope to impact for Christ the amount of people that Mr. Burbridge was able too."

You can find the release from the NCCAA here. Below is a full list of the honorees.
 
NCCAA 1st Team All-American
 
Pitcher-Kyle Vail, Southwestern Christian University
Pitcher-Andrew Bergmann, Judson University
Pitcher-Dustin Lawson, Lee University
Pitcher-Wilson Ashford, Fresno Pacific University
Catcher-Brandon Cummings, Oklahoma Wesleyan University
Catcher-Zack Jones, Trinity Christian College
1st Base-David Espinoza, Oklahoma Wesleyan University
2nd Base-Luke Rojas, Judson University
Shortstop-Allen Staton, North Greenville College
3rd Base-Florentino Moreno, Arlington Baptist College
Extra Infielder-Ziar Koeiman, Oklahoma Wesleyan University
Outfield-Caleb Lang, Cairn University
Outfield-Preston Scott, Fresno Pacific University
Outfield-Carlos Torres, Campbellsville University
Outfield-Tyler Osborn, University of Northwestern

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Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license.
Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

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