CUMBERLAND â€” The stakes were clear for both teams entering Wednesdayâ€™s matchup at Garvin Field.
For Cumberland National, a win would punch its ticket to the semifinal round of the District IV tournament. For Bernon, a win would allow it to stave off elimination.
In a vintage pitchersâ€™ duel that featured more than four times as many strikeouts (26) as hits (6), Cumberland National rode ace right-hander Brandon Croteau to a 2-1 victory, clinching the second-best record in Pool B.
Bruce Foster loves an adventure. The tougher, the better.
In past years, Foster has rode his bike 300-plus miles from his Lincoln residence to the Canadian border and back a few times. Heâ€™s also participated in the Sunday River Mountain Epic trail running challenge, a handful of Odyssey Adventure Racing multi-day expedition adventure races, and a few other over-the-top challenges to test his personal boundaries and push himself to the limit.
But none of his past experiences came close to measuring up to the challenge he endured two weekends ago.
CUMBERLAND â€” Chris Magill has had a history of top-three finishes at the Arnold Mills Road Race, an event heâ€™s won a record five times.
The 38-year-old former St. Raphael Academy standout had every intention to make an attempt at a sixth crown in the 43rd edition of the Cumberland race Monday morning.
Those thoughts, however, were quickly erased after the first mile.
CUMBERLAND â€” He only weighs 39 pounds and stands about 47 inches tall.
When he was lined up at the start of the Arnold Mills Road Race on Monday, it was easy to overlook the fact that Jack Casey was among the field of more than 500 runners.
Once the race opened up near the mile mark on Abbott Run Valley Road, the eight-year-old Cumberland tyke certainly became noticeable, making more than a few heads turn in the four-mile event.
Casey, an elementary student at Community School, finished the race with an eye-popping time of 29 minutes, 29 seconds â€“ a 7:22 per-mile pace!
With various opinions coming from scouts and management alike, plenty of discussion and debate occurs when narrowing down potential choices leading up to draft day.
Sherard Clinkscales recalls such an instance in 2000. As the Assistant Director of Scouting for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Clinkscales had an important voice regarding what the organization should do with the sixth overall pick. In the end Tampa wound up selecting Rocco Baldelli, but as Clinkscales recalled late last week, it took a while before everyone was in agreement regarding the Woonsocket native/Cumberland native .
PAWTUCKET â€“ Tim Norton has spent the better part of his professional career battling back from countless injuries. His latest setback is akin to the baseball gods kicking a man when heâ€™s down.
The homecoming originally planned for this weekend never happened. Norton did not pitch at McCoy Stadium for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre before friends and family hailing from Burrillville. Instead, the 28-year-old is toiling under the hot sun in Tampa, Fla., the Yankeesâ€™ spring-training facility â€“ Steinbrenner Field â€“ the scene of Nortonâ€™s latest attempt to rehab from shoulder woes.
CUMBERLAND â€” When he entered last yearâ€™s Arnold Mills Road Race, Brian Doyle wasnâ€™t planning on winning the four-mile event. After a grueling high school season, his final year at Bishop Hendricken, he was just looking for a hard training run on the Cumberland course.
But midway through the race something happened. His adrenaline and competitive nature took over and he not only satisfied his goal of a quick tempo run, but actually won the popular Fourth of July race with a time of 20 minutes, 52 seconds.
PAWTUCKET â€” Sometimes staying put may well prove the best option. Kevin Millwood agrees, hence why heâ€™s not looking to leave the Red Sox organization anytime soon.
â€śI enjoy it here and feel that there could be some opportunity in the future [to once more pitch in the big leagues],â€ť said Millwood, addressing the thought process behind not exercising a recent opt-out date in his contract. â€śIt just seemed like a good situation to stay here and keep pitching. â€śMy biggest thing is this is a place Iâ€™ve enjoyed. I like the organization and hopefully it works out.â€ť
CUMBERLAND â€” Burrillville practiced all week expecting to face Cumberland National ace Brandon Croteau on Thursday at Garvin Field.
And it did. Just not until the third inning, after Burrillville had built an eight-run cushion and appeared well on its way to victory.
An appearance from Croteau â€” and his lethal curveball â€” changed all that.
Sparked by Croteauâ€™s four innings of stellar relief, Cumberland National rallied for an 11-9 win to keep pace in Pool B of the District IV tournament.
PAWTUCKET -- The Pawtucket Red Sox proudly unveiled the latest addition to McCoy Stadium on Wednesday afternoon, as Mondor Gardens was open to the public behind the left-field fence near the McCoy Stadium ticket office.
The handicap-accessible area, which is a tribute to late PawSox owner Ben Mondor, who passed away last October, is landscaped with paved walkways, granite steps, six park benches, and a collection of trees, plants, and flowers.
The area also contains six miniature bronze statues of young children playing baseball that Mondor purchased two years ago in Florida.