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Y-D Home Opener to honor NYC Firefighters

for immediate release: 13 June, 2002

 

   Y-D Home Opener to Honor NYC Firefighters
Many Special Events to Mark CCBL Opening Day Weekend



SOUTH YARMOUTH - In honor and memory of the 348 members of the New York City fire Department who lost their lives in the 9-11 Disaster, the Yarmouth Dennis-Red Sox will host a select cadre of visiting New York City Firefighters prior to Saturday, June 15's home opener versus the Chatham A's at Merrill "Red" Wilson Field. The game is set for 5 p.m. with pre-game flag ceremonies slated for 4:30 p.m.


Orleans Cardinals' catcher Derek Norman (Furman) returns for a second season as the 2002 Cape League season gets underway tonite.
Sean Walsh/CCBL 2002


     The event has been planned since shortly after the disaster. The day also marks the first time since last season's playoffs that the Y-D Red Sox and the Chatham A's will play against each other. Red Sox officials expect several hundred fans in excess of the team's average attendance per game, a number that has steadily increased since the franchise invested close to $20,000 in field improvements in 2001.


     According to Red Sox official Sarah Smith, anywhere from 1,000 to 5,000 fans are expected for the big game. Smith also said she expects anywhere from 35-100 NYC Firefighters to attend. Local families are temporarily housing many firefighters' families.


     The Red Sox and A's finished tied last season for first place in the Eastern Division, but the A's swept Y-D in its first playoff appearance in a decade. Field Managers Scott Pickler (Y-D) and John Schiffner (Chatham) return to what has become an inter-divisional rivalry. The respective coaches hold the longest tenures amongst current Cape League coaches with Schiffner now in his 10th season managing the A's.


     Much credit is due this year to Pickler and his ceaseless efforts to improve not merely the franchise's win-loss record, but the number of players selected by Big League ball clubs in the annual First Year Player Draft. Pickler saw 21 of his former players selected in the recently concluded draft, while Schiffner had 15 players picked.


     The 2002 Cape League season actually opens Friday, June 14. Cotuit will visit the Bourne Braves at Coady Field at 4:45 p.m.; Falmouth opens at Spillane Field versus defending champion Wareham at 7 p.m., Y-D visits the Hyannis Mets at 5 p.m. at Jack McKeon Field in downtown Hyannis, Orleans is at Brewster at 5 p.m. and Harwich is under the lights versus Chatham at Veterans Field at 7 p.m.
Other Special Events for Opening Day


     Nick Stavropolous, KeySpan Energy Delivery New England President, will throw out the first pitch for the Hyannis Mets when the Mets host the Y-D Red Sox at McKeon Field Friday, June 14, Opening Day. KeySpan partnered this winter with the Cape League as one of the league's chief sponsors. Dozens of KeySpan employees will join Stavropolous in carrying a large US Flag onto the field prior to the game. The gesture will celebrate not only KeySpan's partnership with the league, but also Flag Day and Opening Day for the 2002 CCBL season.


     The pre-game ceremonies will begin at 4:30 p.m., proceeded by the Mets-Red Sox match-up. League sponsors Cape Cod Potato Chips and the US Army will also be in attendance. U.S. Army recruiters will be on hand and free potato chips will be doled out to fans.


Cotuit Kettleer southpaw Mitch Stetter (Indiana State) returns for a second season on the hill as Cotuit opens tonite versus Bourne.
Sean Walsh/CCBL 2002


Kevin Ool (Marist), last year with Hyannis and this year with Cotuit, brings the heat against the NECBL all-stars last July in Keene, NH.
Sean Walsh/CCBL 2002


-- Sean Walsh/CCBL Director of Public Relations

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