Pittsfield Post 68 baseball gets green light to play some games at Wahconah Park
PITTSFIELD >> The Pittsfield Suns won't be the only team calling Wahconah Park home this summer.
The Suns and Pittsfield Post 68 have agreed to an arrangement whereby the defending state American Legion baseball champions will get an opportunity to play some home games at the venerable ball park on Wahconah Street.
"We just finalized our schedule the other day, and we're going to get together and pick some dates that we're going to have" games at Wahconah Park, Post 68 coach Pat Bassi said. "I'm very excited about that."
A Post 68 graduate, Pittsfield's Kevin Donati, will be playing for the Suns this summer. Donati is a freshman infielder at the University at Albany. He is one of three Western Massachusetts players with the Suns in 2016. Infielder Conor Moriarty from West Springfield High School and catcher Jake Goodreau from Southwick will also be on manager Tom Conley's Suns roster. Moriarty will be playing at UConn next year and Goodreau will play at Boston College. Moriarty plays for Bassi at West Springfield.
"I'm hoping we have three or four games at Wahconah Park," said Bassi, who has been involved with Post 68 for the past 11 seasons. "Looking at the schedules when they'll be away or off and what we have available, I think that's what we're shooting for."
Based on the preliminary Legion schedule and the Suns' schedule, the park would be free June 21, 22 and 25. Post 68's season begins on June 10 at home against Ludlow. The Suns are home that night against Torrington. The Post 68 schedule could change based on weather and other factors.
"It means a lot to us. I really like it when we have events at the stadium," Suns general manager Kristen Huss said. "It's a great place to play ball, especially for kids that don't normally have the opportunity to play there, it's a great experience for them.
"I'd love to have more games there and more experiences for the people in the area to get a chance to play on this historic field."
Huss, in her first year as general manager of the Futures League baseball team, said that when Bassi came to here, she didn't have to think very long about it.
"As soon as he broached it, I was very interested in sitting down and talking to him," she said. "I was very interested in having his team play there."
"Going back to my own experiences as a player, way back when I was fortunate enough to play in the first Babe Ruth League game on that field in the city championship game back in the '60s," Bassi said. "I know how excited I was to play there. I played there a lot in high school."
Post 68 is open to baseball players from throughout Berkshire County, with a majority of those players coming from the city high schools. If the turnout is large enough, Bassi said they might establish a "junior" team. He said they're expecting a large number of players to come out.
Bassi and his staff will have a meeting Sunday night 6 at Post 68 on Wendell Ave., to discuss the season with returning and prospective team members.
Contact Howard Herman at 413-496-6253.