Since I first started following Minor League Baseball, there's been this ongoing tension that I've felt at all the games.
On the one hand, you're pretty much surrounded by people who are living their dreams. On the other hand, kind of by definition, none of those people is really happy, is really satisfied where they are.
Matt Iannazzo was a baseball star at Norwalk High School, pitching them to an FCIAC title in 2007. At the University of Pittsburgh, he was an All-Conference pitcher. Out of college, Iannazzo signed with the Chicago Cubs and played two seasons near the bottom of their organization. Then he pitched for the Bridgeport Bluefish in the independent Atlantic League of Professional Baseball.
We live in a post-"The Gong Show" world. Any TV that you've ever heard anyone use the word "Dada" to describe -- David Letterman's entire career, for instance -- owes something to Chuck Barris's creation.
I think the reality is that on Hartford’s whole 25-man roster, there are probably maybe two, maybe three guys who will go on to have Major League careers of any length. Could be a couple more, but it could be a couple fewer too.
On May 2, 2016, with a 2-2 draw between Tottenham and Chelsea, Leicester City clinched the league title for the first time in their 132-year history. The BBC called it "one of the greatest sporting stories of all time." Leicester were 5,000-to-1 underdogs before the Premier League season started.
I want to get this spoiler out of the way right at the top here: Hartford has baseball, the Yard Goats have a ballpark, and the ballpark — after a 372-day delay — has a fully-functional baseball field where real, live, professional baseball games are actually played.
Every year at this time, as you may have heard, there's a big-old basketball tournament that goes on. And every year at this time, people in offices and in firehouses and in Rotary Clubs and in Atlantic Cities and in Las Vegases enter bracket pools, where they try to win a big-old pile of ducats by predicting just exactly how said big-old basketball tournament will go.