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October 18, 2016 - 3:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, baseball.

Press release:

U.S. Baseball Academy is pleased to announce the return of Spring Training 2017 to its Batavia location. We have been in business for over 20 years, operating hundreds of camps around the country.

Our Spring Training 2017 program will be directed by Skip Sherman, head coach, Genesee Community College, with help from a staff of the top coaches in this area.  Proceeds from the program benefit amateur baseball in Batavia.

U.S. Baseball Academy is a national training program operating at nearly 220 locations across the United States. You can see our complete schedule at www.USBaseballAcademy.com. We generally draw from a 40-mile radius around each site, so this should be newsworthy throughout your circulation area.
 
The release below refers readers to our web site for further details and registration forms. Our registration process is handled online.
  
U.S. Baseball Academy
Midwest Baseball Academy Inc.
866-622-4487 x101
www.USBaseballAcademy.com

October 14, 2016 - 4:31pm
posted by Billie Owens in baseball, sports, Team New Era.

Press release:

Team New Era will hold an open tryout to fill one, or potentially as many as two, roster spots on its 12U, 14U and 16U teams.

Interested players at those ages are welcome to attend either of the following free tryouts: 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 25th, and 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29th, at our Depew location training facility -- 3950 Broadway, Depew. For more information contact Rich Wozniak at [email protected] or 716-681-3001 or see www.teamnewerabaseball.com.

August 16, 2016 - 4:50pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, sports, baseball, muckdogs.

Press release: 

Due to rain and wet field conditions during three separate road games, the Muckdogs will now be making those games up at Dwyer Stadium. 

The game in Mahoning Valley on Thursday, Aug. 11th, was postponed due to rain. This game will be made up as part of a double header on Wednesday, Aug. 17th. The teams will play two seven-inning games, with the first game starting at 5:05 p.m. Gates will open at 4 p.m.

The second makeup game will occur versus the Auburn Doubledays on Sunday, Sept. 4th, starting at 2:05 p.m. Gates will open at 1 p.m. The first game will be the conclusion of a suspended game that began Saturday, Aug. 13th, in Auburn. The game will begin in the bottom of the third inning with the score tied at zero, as it was when the game was postponed. The game is scheduled to be a nine inning game and will be followed by Sunday’s regularly scheduled contest, which will be seven innings. 

The final makeup game will take place versus Auburn on Monday, Sept. 5th. This is to make up the game that was postponed due to wet field conditions in Auburn on Sunday, Aug. 14th. Once again, the teams will play two seven-inning games, with the first game starting at 1:05 p.m. Gates will open at noon.

August 12, 2016 - 1:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, muckdogs, baseball, batavia, news, buffalo bills, Ray Bentley.

Press release:

The Batavia Muckdogs today announced that former Buffalo Bills linebacker Ray Bentley will sign autographs at Dwyer Stadium on Sunday, Aug. 21st, when the Muckdogs battle the West Virginia Black Bears at 4:05 p.m.

Prior to throwing out the ceremonial first pitch, Bentley will sign autographs from 3 to 3:45 p.m. Bentley will then sign again from 4:10 to 5 p.m.

Bentley is also the author of a series of children’s books about the characters Darby the Dinosaur and Bubba Gator. In addition to Bentley’s autograph signing, the first 150 kids 10 and under will also receive a free copy of the book “Darby’s Christmas Adventure.”

Bentley spent six seasons with the Bills (1986-1991), including two of the four historic consecutive Super Bowl appearances. After suffering an injury with the Cincinnati Bengals in 1992, Ray retired from professional football. Once retired, Ray became a radio show talk host in his hometown of Grand Rapids, Mich., on WOOD 1340 AM, as well as a play by play announcer on FOX for the NFL. In 2000, he became the Head Coach and General Manager of the Buffalo Destroyers, an Arena Football League team. After resigning in 2003, he made his way back to the television screen, becoming a color analyst for ESPN college football games, the job he still holds today.

For tickets, call the Muckdogs box office at (585) 343-5454, ext. 1005.

August 4, 2016 - 12:49pm

Press release:

The WNY Boys of Summer Travel Baseball League is holding open registration for teams ages 10 thru 16 for fall league play in September and October. Deadline to register is Aug. 22nd.

For more information or to register see www.wnyboysofsummer.com.

July 25, 2016 - 5:36pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, muckdogs, baseball, news.
Press release:
 

Tonight’s game between the Batavia Muckdogs and State College Spikes has been postponed due wet and unsafe field conditions.

This game will be made up as part of a double header on Tuesday, July 26th. We will play two seven innings games, with the first game starting at 11:05 p.m. Gates will open at 10 a.m. Any person with tickets to tonight’s game can exchange their tickets for any other regular season game, subject to availability. 

The Batavia Lions Club bike raffle that was originally scheduled for tonight will be rescheduled at a to-be-determined home game.

July 21, 2016 - 2:44pm
posted by Billie Owens in muckdogs, sports, baseball, youth baseball camp, news.

Join the Muckdogs at Dwyer Stadium Aug. 18th, 19th, and 20th for our youth baseball camp!

Kids ages 6-14 will receive two days of on-field instruction from the Muckdogs players and coaches on August 18th and 19th from 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. Children will learn from the pros in the areas of hitting, fielding, pitching, catching, base running and bunting. Then on Aug. 20th, campers will be able to come back to Dwyer for a private autograph signing with the team 30 minutes before the gates open (5:30 p.m.) and then be recognized on the field prior to the Muckdogs game vs. the West Virginia Black Bears (Pittsburgh Pirates affiliate).

Campers will also receive a special T-shirt not available in the team store, a camp photo, two tickets to the Aug. 20th game, as well as daily lunch, all for only $70. Registration forms are available at Dwyer Stadium and online at muckdogs.com. Space is limited and all registrations and payments must be turned in by Friday, Aug. 5th

**************************

The Batavia Muckdogs are the short-season, Class A affiliate of the Miami Marlins and are the lone remaining founding members of the New York-Penn League, dating back to 1939. The Batavia Muckdogs are operated by the neighboring Rochester Red Wings.

Location: Dwyer Stadium, 299 Bank Street, Batavia, NY 14020

Phone: 585-343-5454; Fax: 585-343-5620

Website: www.muckdogs.com

July 16, 2016 - 2:27pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, news, baseball, all-stars, little league.

Submitted photo. Seated, from left: Mekhi Fortes, Ryan Fitzpatrick. Kneeling, from left: Trenton Woods, Jay Antinore. Players (from left): Alex Johnson, Jimmy Fanara, Dane Dombrowski, Cal Koukides, Bronx Buchholz, Cole Grazioplene, Jameson Motyka, Jaden Firmstone. Back Row: Coaches Jeff Grazioplene, Leon Koukides, Ben Buchholz, Manager Sam Antinore, Coach Tim Antinore.

Press release from Mark Fitzpatrick, Batavia Little League board member:

Batavia's 9-10 All-Stars won the New York District 3 Championship on Monday, July 11, defeating Le Roy 15-0 in four innings.

Through their five games en route to the tournament title, Batavia outscored its opponents 65-5, led by pitchers Ryan Fitzpatrick, Jaden Firmstone, Dane Dombrowski and Bronx Buchholz.

In the title game after a scoreless opening inning, Mekhi Fortes and Dombrowski led off the second with back-to-back doubles, followed by singles by Buchholz, Firmstone, and Trent Woods, scoring four in the inning.

Batavia broke the game open in the third when offense was able to send 17 batters to the plate while scoring 11 runs. On defense, Batavia was led by the pitching performance of Fitzpatrick, who threw a no-hitter over his four innings of work, striking out six.

Batavia plays Section 2 Champion Olean/Portville in Penfield today in the first round of the Section 1 West double elimination tournament. Game time is 1 p.m. at Bachman Field, 3100 Atlantic Ave., Penfield.

July 15, 2016 - 2:08pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, muckdogs, baseball, sports, news.

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Visiting teams are bringing more top prospects to Batavia over the next couple of nights, with a first-rounder starting for Aberdeen tonight, and the son of a former major leaguer who missed last season because of an injury tomorrow night.

This evening, Cody Sedlock, the 27th overall pick for the Baltimore Orioles, takes the mound against the Muckdogs in his second professional start. Hailing from Rock Island, Ill., Sedlock set a new school record in strikeouts this season for the University of Illinois. 

On Saturday, Hunter Harvey (photo) continues his comeback effort. The son of former major league pitcher Bryan Harvey was a first-round pick for the Orioles in 2013.

Last night, Aberdeen also put a prospect from Rochester on the mound. Steven Klimek, a graduate of Greece Arcadia before attending St. Bonaventure, pitched two and a third innings, fanning six and not allowing a hit against eight batters.

Photo of Hunter Havery courtesy Mike Janes/Four Seam Images.

July 13, 2016 - 12:46pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, baseball, Team New Era Elite Travel Teams.

Press release:

Current summer baseball players ages 9 thru 14 can extend their season through the fall with Team New Era Fall Elite Travel Teams.

Teams will participate in league and tournament play in September and October. Tryouts will be held at our Depew training facility, 3950 Broadway, as follows:

  • Current summer players ages 9 thru 11: Wednesday July 13th at 6 p.m.
  • Current summer players ages 12 thru 14: Wednesday July 13th at 7:30 p.m.

Players need only attend one tryout. For more information see www.teamnewerabaseball.com or contact Rich Wozniak at 716-681-3001.

July 5, 2016 - 9:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in muckdogs, baseball, sports, batavia.

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On a night when the Batavia Muckdogs fell to 4-14 in a 5-1 loss to Brooklyn, at least there were fireworks after the game.

There was also the professional debut of the New York Mets' #1 draft pick, Justin Dunn, who brought his own kind of heat, striking out two in the ninth of a jittery eighth frame.

In the eighth, the Muckdogs managed two hits off of Dunn, matching the total number of hits they got over seven innings against starter Merandy Gonzalez (2-0, 2.21 ERA).

Muckdogs starter Reilly Hovis took the loss, giving up four runs and seven hits over four innings to fall to 1-2 with a 5.60 ERA. Relievers Chevis Hoover and Parker Bugg held things down over the final five innings, giving up a run and two hits.

For the Muckdogs, Isaiah White had two hits.

The Muckdogs face Brooklyn again tonight at Dwyer. Game time is 7:05. 

Top photo: Dunn delivering his first professional pitch.

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Batavia second baseman Rony Cabrera gets ready to apply the tag on Gene Cone's steal attempt in the sixth inning.

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In the second, Samuel Castro attempted to bunt for a base hit, but seemed to wait for the umpire to call his bunt foul before running toward first. He was thrown out at first.

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Dale Burdick steals second in the second. Burdick is the nephew of Tom Turnbull, president of the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce.

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Reilly Hovis pitching.

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Aaron Knapp gets a stolen base, his second of the season.

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Justin Dunn

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July 3, 2016 - 5:33pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in baseball, muckdogs, batavia, sports.

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New York Mets fans in the area might be interested to know that Justin Dunn, this year's #1 draft pick by the Mets, and 19th overall, could make his professional debut tomorrow against the Batavia Muckdogs at Dwyer Stadium.

It's July 4th and there will be post-game fireworks, so expect a sellout anyway.

Game time is 7 p.m.

Dunn was born in Freeport and attended Boston College before being drafted.

Photo courtesy Mike Janes/Four Seams Images.

June 30, 2016 - 10:40am
posted by Steve Ognibene in muckdogs, sports, news, baseball, batavia, steve ognibene's blog.

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Pictured above, Pablo Garcia watching two West Virginia runs being scored.

A quiet start but energetic night coming into tonight’s second game versus West Virginia Black Bears, but the Batavia Muckdogs ended a three-game winning streak losing at Dwyer Stadium 9-4.

After the first few innings being tied, in the bottom of the sixth, Isaiah White stirs the field on a forced out grounder advancing Rony Cabrera to third who scored on Aaron Knapp’s single next at bat taking the game lead by one. Pablo Garcia hit a sacrifice fly to left which brought White in to score leading the Muckdogs after six innings 3-1.

Top of the 7th Muckdogs Justin Langley comes in, West Virginia unloaded on Batavia, scoring six runs runs by, George, Krause, Baur, Craig, Pabst for the Black Bears. Ty Provencher replaced Justin Langley, Provencher  escaped the inning allowing two runs by Leffler and Owen which brought West Virgina’s lead 9-3.

No change until the bottom of the ninth with two outs Batavia’s Jhonny Santos homers on a fly ball to left field to eventually end the night with Batavia losing 9-4, tying the series 1-1.

Muckdogs will play tonight ending the three-game home stances against West Virginia game time 7:05.

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June 29, 2016 - 9:51am
posted by Howard B. Owens in baseball, sports, Pavilion.

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The Pavilion U-10 baseball team had its best post-season finish in a decade, coming in second in a tournament held in Perry.

Pictured are: Christopher Doody. Mason Gilkes, Cole Harding, Grayson Harding, Landon Stoddard, Case Cummings, Zach Tillotson, Cameron Beck, Noah Hudson, Tyler True, Evan Kingdon, Ryan Williams, and coaches, Brandon Gilkes and Jason Tillotson, and head coach Tim Kingdon.  Coach Michelle Forti was unavailable for the photo.

Photo and information submitted by Ed Doody.

June 28, 2016 - 10:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, elba, baseball, news.

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Photo and story submitted by Drew Muehlig.

A four-run fourth inning was the difference as Elba downed Chili 8-4 Saturday to win the youth major league baseball championship.

The Lancers were leading 4-2 heading into the fourth, but the insurance runs in that big inning proved to be the difference. Zach Howard led off the inning with a single, scoring on Randy McIntire’s double on the very next pitch. Jake Engle added an infield single and then Nate Esten connected on a two-out single to score McIntire, putting runners on the corners. Brendan Thompson then sent a hard grounder through shortstop that took a tremendous bounce over the approaching fielder. Thompson took advantage, stretching the hit into a triple to score two runs putting the Lancers up 8-2.

Chili would score two runs in the top half of the sixth but their comeback fell short.

Elba’s CJ Gottler struck out nine in earning the win on the mound while Howard fired seven strikeouts to collect the save. Gottler and Zach Marsceill had huge run-scoring singles to keep Elba in the game early. Anthony Zambito also singled for the Lancers, who finish the year at 15-1. 

Photo: Front row -- CJ Gottler, Anthony Zambito, Zach Howard; second row, Frank Warriner, Jake Engle, Randy McIntire; third row, Tyler Kauffman, Brendan Thompson, Gage Chamberlain, Arron Wyder, Nate Esten, Caden Muehlig, Zach Marsceill; back row, coaches Drew Muehlig, Brian Engle and Vern Howard.

June 28, 2016 - 12:47pm

Athletes Edge Summer Baseball Camp will be held July 11-14 for children ages 5 to 12 at the Batavia Little League Complex near Dwyer Stadium. The address of the complex is 299 Bank St.

This camp will be assisted by Batavia High School Varsity Baseball players.

Cost is $90 per camper. Registration deadline is July 7. Each camper will receive a camp T-shirt.

Age groups are:

  • Group 1: 5- and 6-year-olds
  • Group 2: 7- to 9-year-olds
  • Group 3: 10- to 12-year-olds

Times are 9 a.m. to noon every day.

Mail payment with a piece of paper containing the player's name, age, address, and phone number, along with T-shirt size to:

Athletes Edge Summer Baseball Camp

8487 Violet Lane

Batavia NY 14020

 

Contact is Ben Buchholz via email  [email protected]

or call his mobile phone at (716) 982-8259.

June 24, 2016 - 2:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, baseball, elba, youth sports.

randy_mcintire_awaits_the_pitch_for_elba._the_lancers_defeated_sweden_clarkson_5-2_to_advance_to_the_youth_major_league_championship.jpg

Photo and article submitted by Drew Muehlig.

The Elba Lancers used an explosive four-run fifth inning to surge past Sweden Clarkson 5-2 in youth major league baseball playoff semifinal action Thursday night.

Elba’s Zach Howard led off the inning with a single up the middle. He subsequently stole second base and made his way to third on an errant throw. Howard then raced home on a passed ball, sliding across the plate safely to tie the score at 2-2, firing up the Lancers' bench in the process.

Caden Muehlig followed moments later with a one-out triple to deep right-center field. He would score the go-ahead run on the next pitch as Randy McIntire doubled him in for his second RBI of the game. Nate Esten and Gage Chamberlain also notched RBI doubles as the inning continued. When all was said and done, Elba had a 5-2 lead heading into the top of the sixth inning.

Howard took it from there, sandwiching a foul pop catch between two strikeouts to end the game. He finished with six strikeouts in relief to pick up the win. Starter CJ Gottler kept the Lancers in it, striking out seven, giving up two unearned runs, as Elba struggled early in the field.

McIntire led Elba offensively with two hits and two stolen bases. Brendan Thompson added a single for the Lancers (14-1). Elba will host the league championship Saturday against a team yet to be determined.

Sweden Clarkson finishes the year 13-2.

June 23, 2016 - 10:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in baseball, sports, muckdogs, batavia, news.

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At least it was a beautiful night for baseball at Dwyer Stadium on Wednesday, even if the play on the field was a bit ugly.

The Batavia Muckdogs dropped their 2016 home opener 11-1 to State College, falling to an 0-6 start. But fans shouldn't be too discouraged. Today's roster of youngsters has yet to be supplemented by Miami Marlin draft picks. The season should get progressively better, as they usually do under Muckdog's manager Angel Espada.

On a night that could, maybe, be the last home opener for one of the New York Penn-League's founding franchises (but that's true every year these days), the team tapped its rich history and its ties to the community by having Jerry Maley, a lifelong Batavia resident who made his professional debut with the local team in 1948, throw out the first pitch.

The Muckdogs try again tonight at Dwyer Stadium. Game time is 7 p.m. More good weather is expected.

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June 22, 2016 - 4:48pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in baseball, sports, batavia, muckdogs.

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David Kleinbach shared this picture of three youths doing what kids have done for generations at professional baseball games, peeking through holes in the fence to watch the game.

The Batavia Muckdogs open their home schedule tonight at Dwyer Stadium. Game time is 7 p.m.

June 22, 2016 - 10:21am
posted by Howard B. Owens in baseball, sports, batavia, muckdogs, news.

Batavia has a rich baseball history, and Bill Kauffman and Bill Dougherty, each in their own way, have written about that history. Last year, Dougherty released "A View from the Bleachers: Batavia Baseball," and Kauffman, whose latest book is "Poetry Night at the Ballpark," has used Batavia baseball in his books and essays to frame his love for a life lived at human scale where neighbors rub shoulders and crack wise between pitches.

In anticipation of at least one more Batavia Muckdogs baseball season, we sat down in the stands at Dwyer Stadium with Bill and Bill to talk baseball, writing and life in Batavia.  

Baseball in Batavia, at least professional baseball, is listed on the endangered species list, soon to join the dodo bird and the passenger pigeon on the list of treasures lost to history. We know we have the 2016 season, and we are pretty sure there will be a 2017 season, but beyond that, the profiteers in the commissioner's office of Ben J. Hayes can't wait to yank the franchise away from the league's ancestral home. 

It's a myth that the Muckdogs lack sufficient local fan support. While Batavia ranks dead last in total attendance, it's actually one of the more stoutly supported teams in the league, ranking eighth in per-capita attendance, drawing a healthy 6 percent of the city's population on an average game night.

"Baseball is one of the things that gives Batavia its character, its flavor, its savor," Kauffman said. "It keeps us from drifting into the great American nothingness that has consumed so much of this country. This is the birthplace of the New York-Penn League, and the league, unfortunately, is on this crazy madcap expansion where it stretches now from Burlington, Vermont to Morgantown, West Virginia. It’s insane. It's driven transportation and lodging costs way up and makes it very hard for small market teams to survive. If Batavia lost its franchise, I think the league would lose its heart and soul."

It's debatable, of course, whether the league still has any heart or soul, having some time ago crassly moved its headquarters out of New York to St. Petersburg, Fla.

Writers love baseball for the same reason some sports fans have drifted to faster-paced contests. It's the lulls between pitches, between hitters and between innings, that give baseball its grace, making it a game for fans with active minds and a gift for gab.

"There’s a lot of room in between things in baseball and the things that fill up that room are to me what make it a real special experience," Kauffman said.

Minor league baseball is its own special treat, says Dougherty, especially at this level, short-season Single A, where even the most experienced player hasn't even played 100 games yet of professional ball and many, when they first walk onto Dwyer's lush infield, haven't seen their first professional pitch.

"They come here, and they're not too polished, but as the season goes on you notice a definite improvement in overall play," Dougherty said. "They know what to do and some of the plays you would actually say, ‘that’s a major league play.’ I appreciate the ambiance and seeing the players develop right before your eyes.”

The name of Kauffman's book comes from a somewhat historical, or perhaps, ignominious night in Batavia baseball lore, the night and when he and Club President Brian Paris decided that rather than playing canned music -- which they both hate -- between innings, they and a few others would read poems about baseball.

"You can already tell, this was a horrible idea," Kauffman said.

After the few innings, Paris asked the fans, music or poetry? The cry of the fans -- decidedly not fans of Charles Bukowski and Marianne Moore -- filled the air, "music."

They read more poetry.

"The fact that it didn’t go over well, it was a Batavia thing," Kauffman said. "If it was San Francisco, people would go, ‘oh, that’s cool,’ but Batavia is unselfconscious and I like that."

The Batavia Muckdogs open their home schedule tonight at Dwyer Stadium. Game time is 7 p.m.

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