Festival This Weekend
As always, there will be food, music, rides, raffles, the parade of teams and, of course, baseball. Invited honored guests include Senator Charles Schumer, Congressman Gregory Meeks, State Senator Joe Addabbo, Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder and Councilman Eric Ulrich. Goldfeder and Ulrich each sponsor a team in the league.
Tickets for the opening day were sold online. A limited number of walk-up tickets will be available.
Rockaway Little League will also use this event to “pay it forward.” RLL will collect gently used baseball equipment for donation to Pitch In For Baseball (PIFB). PIFB is the organization that organized a huge donation of new and used equipment to Rockaway in the wake of Superstorm Sandy. PIFB will distribute RLL donations to other Little Leagues that have suffered natural disasters and the like.
The “Opening Day” Festival is truly opening day for the Tee Ball and Challenger divisions. The McManus Mechanical Braves will tee off against the Lichtenstein Lions’ Orioles in the year’s first game between our youngest baseball players. The older divisions started earlier this spring.
In the Major Boys’ division, the first three weeks have already shaped up as a tight battle between the Twins, Cubs and Dodgers for the early advantage. Two of those teams went head-to-head last Saturday.
The Orlow Firm Cubs defeated the Goldfeder Twins by a score of 6-0, behind a stellar pitching performance by Matt McCabe. McCabe retired the first 11 batters he faced and carried a no hitter into the top of the fifth inning. It was broken up by a hard shot to right by Terrence Moriarty. McCabe finished the game with a two-hit shutout.
The only offense that either team was able to muster was a break out first inning by the Cubbies, with all of the runs scoring with two outs. Reid Heyman led off the game with a walk and was sacrificed to second with a long fly ball off the bat of Jake Mackoff that was tracked down by Daniel Green playing center.
With two outs recorded, Brian Keane hit a single that moved Reid to third. Jack Casey then plated the first two runs with a hard single to right. Both Matt McCabe and Matt McDade walked to load the bases. Jack McDade accepted another free pass to drive in the next run, making the score 3-0. Max Brown ripped a hot shot up the middle that scored another run. Reid Heyman followed with a double to drive home two more runs, completing the scoring for the Cubs and for the game.
The Cubs also flashed some leather, with 10 of the 18 outs recorded coming off of the bats of the Twins. The defensive highlight of the game happened in the second inning, when Liam Rader hit a hard grounder into right field that was corralled by Matt McDade, who fielded the ball and threw out the runner at first base from the right field position.