|SteepleCats Unveils 2012 Schedule|
|By Sean McGrath, North Adams SteepleCats Report|
11:50AM / Friday, March 16, 2012
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Entering its 11th season in the NECBL in 2012, the SteepleCats are the fourth oldest organization in the NECBL. Highlighted by home games on every Sunday evening – excluding the All-Star Game – and an exhibition bout against the Great Britain Under-23 National Team, the North Adams SteepleCats and first-year manager Bryan Radamski have officially unveiled their 2012 New England Collegiate Baseball League Schedule.
Looking to return to the playoffs after seeing its nine-year postseason streak snapped last year, North Adams kicks off the 2012 campaign on the road on June 7, taking on Eastern Division foe Sanford to herald in the season. One night later, the SteepleCats return to the Berkshires for their Friday night home opener against Vermont at 6:30 p.m. at Joe Wolfe Field.
With two organizations no longer operating, North Shore and Old Orchard Beach, the NECBL will have two five-team divisions. To balance out the league, former Western Division rival Mystic has moved to the East to accommodate the changes. Both divisions will field five teams, with each divisional opponent facing off eight times (four home and four away). Each franchise will also host and travel to each team in the opposite division, accounting for a balanced, 42-game schedule.
After taking to the field for 15 games in the first 18 days of the season, the SteepleCats will enjoy back-to-back off days in the final week of June before opening up a grueling six-day stretch of action. North Adams will battle exclusively against Western Division foes during that stretch from June 27-July 1, and the SteepleCats wrap up that span with a marquee exhibition date at home against the Great Britain Under-23 National Team at Joe Wolfe Field on July 2. Great Britain’s visit to the SteepleCats will be a part of a four-game exhibition tour in the NECBL. Team Great Britain is attempting to qualify for the World Baseball Classic during 2013. The World Baseball Classic occurs every four years and is baseballs attempt at determining the world’s best baseball country since the Olympic’s eliminated baseball from competition.
Two days later, the SteepleCats will host their traditional Fourth of July celebration, as North Adams hosts Sanford for a 6:30 p.m. holiday evening affair. North Adams still holds the all-time single-game attendance record set six seasons ago when a record 6,714 fans watched the SteepleCats battle Holyoke on July 4, 2006.
After the Fourth, the ‘Cats see action for another five consecutive days with long road trips against Laconia (July 6) and Newport (July 9) slated during that span.
Following a busy 11-day span – during which the SteepleCats will take to the diamond on 10 of those days – the league will head north to Montpelier, Vt., where the Western Division’s Vermont Mountaineers will host the NECBL All-Star Game on Sunday, July 22 at 6:30 p.m. The celebration will feature a Skills Competition and will promise to deliver one of the most entertaining and enjoyable nights of the season.
After a day off, North Adams stays on the road for two more days, as the SteepleCats take on defending NECBL Champion Keene on July 24 before facing Vermont a day later. Two days later, the ‘Cats battle Keene and Holyoke at home in back-to-back games (July 28-29) before finishing up the regular season with a home-and-home series against Danbury, as the SteepleCats will look to wrap up the year on a winning note at Joe Wolfe Field against the Westerners on Aug. 1 at Joe Wolfe Field.
Throughout the season, North Adams will continue its long-standing tradition of $1 Hot Dog Nights, and will continue with other delicious concession stand specials throughout the summer.
For more information, visit www.steeplecats.com.