Monday, September 19, 2016

The Traveling Neshanock visit Legends and Shipyards

Neshanock catcher and official blog photographer Mark "Gaslight" Granieri reports on Flemington's visits to South Orange and the Philadelphia Navy Yard 

Flemington Neshanock

 The Neshanock were busy, but successful, winning three 1864 contests on Saturday and Sunday, this past weekend. Saturday. the team traveled to Cameron Field “Where the Legends Played” (est. 1914) in South Orange, NJ to take on the South Oranges Villagers in a game organized by the South Orange Historical and Preservation Society. Sunday saw them playing in the 19th Century Base Ball Exhibition hosted by the Athletic BBC of Philadelphia at The Navy Yard in Philadelphia, PA meeting the Rising Sun BBC (MD) and the Capital Stars Club of DC (MD/VA).

Cameron Field - South Orange

Cameron Field and the South Orange Villagers have a long and rich baseball history thus producing the “Legends” moniker. The Villagers had been joined by Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig during their barnstorming days. The Villagers also met traveling Negro League teams anchored by such names as Josh Gibson, Larry Doby and Monte Irvin. Additionally the field has hosted Seton Hall games with such names as Rick Cerone and Craig Biggio. This edition of the Villagers first met the Neshanock in 2014. In their first meeting the Neshanock won by a comfortable margin however their second meeting was to be much different.

Chris “Sideshow” Nunn

 The Neshanock held a 5-2 lead through 7 innings until the Villagers scored 5 in the bottom of the 8th to take a 7-5 advantage. In the top of the 9th the Neshanock tallied 2 runs to tie the score and blanked the Villagers in the bottom of the 9th to send the game to extra innings. With their bats still warm, the Neshanock scored 3 in the top of the 10th and held the opposition to just 1 run in the bottom half for an exciting 10-8 victory. The pitching duties were shared by Bob “Melky” Ritter and Danny “Batman” Shaw.  Leading the Neshanock in runs scored were Tom “Thumbs” Hoepfner and Rene “Mango” Marrero with 3 apiece. These same two strikers also had notable swings in the game with “Thumbs” hitting an opposite field home run down the left field line in the 6th inning and “Mango” driving a shot into left center which reached the scoreboard, marked 350, on a few bounces in the 8th inning.

Cameron Field’s manual scoreboard

Flemington had to rise early on Sunday to make an 8:30 start time against the Rising Sun BBC where the weather was hot and humid and not always sunny in Philadelphia. Rising Sun handed the Nehanock losses in their previous two meetings, both times in Old Bethpage, NY. However the Neshanock finally got their revenge with a 12-5 victory in this meeting. The Neshanock held a 6-2 lead through six innings in a well played contest until they tallied 4 in the 7th innings to break it open. “Mango” handled the hurling duties while the first four strikers in the lineup (Chris “Sideshow” Nunn, Dan “Sledge” Hammer, “Thumbs” and “Mango”) each contributed 2 runs scored for a balanced attack.

 Neshanock vs. Rising Sun at The Navy Yard

Flemington next met the Capital Stars of DC which consisted of players from several clubs including Chesapeake, Arundel and Talbot. The Neshanock cruised to 19-0 victory in a match which saw them take a 9-0 lead after just 2 innings. Again “Mango” kept the opposing strikers off balance but this time he was assisted by Brad “Brooklyn” Shaw who took the mound for the final frame. Leading the way in runs scored was “Sledge” with 5, followed by “Sideshow” with 4 and Ken “Tumbles” Mandel with 3 who was sorely missed by all in the first contest. Next weekend the Neshanock meet this week’s host, the Athletic Club of Philadelphia at Dey Farm in Monroe Township, NJ.

Tom “Thumbs” Hoepfner strikes against Capital Stars of DC

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