Worcester Bravehearts Named Futures League Organization of the Year
Friday, October 28, 2016
“Win or lose, we strive for smiles. In all seasons and all types of weather, I want people to smile when they hear the name ‘Bravehearts’ or ‘Jake the Lion.’ There are so many people— Manager J.P. Pyne, Coaches Hartigan & Cummins, the Creedon family, our staff and interns— who deliver a winning product to the stadium each night to make sure that our fans have a great time when they come to a game,” said General Manager Dave Peterson.
This is the second Organization of the Year Award for the Bravehearts, their last coming in 2014.
"The Worcester Bravehearts continue to enhance the caliber of the entire league and did a fantastic job hosting our League’s All Star Game this year. The league is proud of what they’ve been able to do in the City of Worcester in just three years, and we can’t wait to see where this momentum takes them in 2017,” said FCBL Commissioner, Chris Hall.
Bravehearts Among the Best
In their three seasons, the Bravehearts have ranked at or near the top of the league in attendance each year, and drew an average of 2,230 fans per night at Hanover Insurance Park at Fitton Field in 2016.
They also cracked the top ten summer collegiate teams in the country for the first time, finishing ninth in total attendance and tenth in average attendance among 169 teams.
Bravehearts in 2016
This past season, the Bravehearts posted the best regular season record and advanced to the championship series for the third straight season before losing to the Nashua Silver Knights.
This past year also saw the top 70 prospects in the Futures League come to Worcester for the Futures League All-Star game in July.
The event included a fan fest, scout day, home run derby, and All-Star Game, and saw a stadium record 4,319 fans come to Hanover Insurance park.
Worcester baseball celebrities Tim Collins, Ryan O’Rourke, Ron Perry and J.P. Ricciardi were honored on the field before the game.
Related Slideshow: The History of Baseball in Central Massachusetts
Baseball and Central Mass. go way back - to the 1860s. The local historical landmarks range from Mudville to Hotel Vernon to Fitton Field. A version of these highlights is posted on the site of the new, yet-to-be-formally-named Worcester Baseballteam of the three-year-old Futures Collegiate Baseball League.
First Perfect Game
The first perfect game in the history of Major League Baseball was pitched in Worcester, on June 12, 1880, by J. Lee Richmond for the Worcester Worcesters – also known at various times as the Brown Stockings and the Ruby Legs - versus the Cleveland Blues at the Worcester Driving Park Grounds, located in the Worcester Agricultural Fairgrounds near Elm Park. Worcester joined the National League in 1880, replacing the failed Syracuse Stars.
NE Collegiate Baseball
A New England Collegiate Baseball League team played in Leominster from 1995 to 1999. Called the Central Mass. Collegians, they won the NECBL Championship in both 1995 and 1996, and During the 1995 season, they played a game against the Cuban National Youth Team in Worcester.
Wachusett Dirt Dawgs
The Wachusett Dirt Dawgs, who play at historic, and newly renovated, Doyle Field in Leominster, are a 2012 expansion franchise in the now-three-year-old Futures Collegiate Baseball League.The Dirt Dawgs’ 2013 season swung into action on June 5 with big expectations, but ended on August 8 with those hopes being dashed. They finished in the basement, with a record of 20-31 - 14 games behind first-place the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks (38-18). The team is owned by prominent Leominster businessman John Morrison, who also founded, owns and operates Fosta-Tek Optics in Leominster.
Last month, the Futures Collegiate Baseball League announced the formation of the Worcester Baseball franchise, which will play its first season next summer. The team is owned by the family that owns and operates Creedon and Co. The prominent Worcester catering service will be the food-and-beverage vendor at home games at Fitton Field, at the College of the Holy Cross. Through Octobert 25, Worcester Baseball is conducting a name-the-team competition.
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