Jonathan McNicol / WNPR

On September 30, 1865, Yale University played its first-ever baseball game, a Saturday afternoon matchup against Wesleyan. Last Saturday night, the two teams met in an exhibition game to celebrate the sesquicentennial of their rivalry, and of their respective baseball programs.

Baseball Legend Yogi Berra Dies At 90

Sep 23, 2015

Yogi Berra, known as much for his quotable malapropisms as for his baseball career, has died at his home in New Jersey, according to Dave Kaplan, director of the Yogi Berra Museum. The Hall of Famer was 90 years old.

Berra was a Yankee alongside fellow legends Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle from 1949 to 1965, helping the team win 10 World Series championships. He played in more World Series (14) than any other major leaguer and was named MVP three times.

The Pawtucket Red Sox officially pronounced dead Saturday night their quest to build a ballpark on part of the former I-195 land in Providence, an effort that went onto life support in recent weeks due a variety of hurdles.

In a statement, PawSox Chairman Larry Lucchino said the team was suspending its pursuit of the I-195 parcels and "will cease its public campaign for the I-195 riverfront site."

The plan for a new stadium for the Pawtucket Red Sox in Providence has hit a roadblock. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay parses how this field of dreams turned into a nightmare.

Jonathan McNicol / WNPR

You notice Pat Mackenzie on the field at Dodd Stadium in Norwich — not in the bottom of the first, as the Connecticut Tigers’ lead-off hitter. And maybe not in the top of the first, as their second baseman.

Before the game even starts, during the national anthem, his shaved-bald, hatless head catches your eye. Or maybe his mustache-free goatee does. But you do notice Pat Mackenzie, as the players line up and face the flag.

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ESPN said commentator Curt Schilling won't appear on the air for the next month in the wake of his anti-Muslim tweet.

ESPN said Thursday that Schilling won't be on telecasts for the rest of the regular season or the American League wild-card game on October 6.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Hartford's new minor league baseball stadium celebrated a construction milestone Tuesday. The first steel beams have been delivered and put in place. But a new report says that getting the job done in time to play in April could come at a price. 

Jonathan McNicol / WNPR

Minor League Baseball came to a close in New Britain on Sunday. The Rock Cats played their final home game of the season before moving to Hartford next year to become the Yard Goats.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

For a year, Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra has taken criticism that his minor league baseball stadium plan was hatched in secret without state input. But now new details are coming out about who knew what and when -- stoking tension between Segarra and Gov. Dannel Malloy. 

Jonathan McNicol/WNPR News

Catcher David Marchetti hit two home runs including a storybook game winner in extra innings to lead Cranston, Rhode Island, to a 3–2 win over Waterford, Connecticut, in Bristol. Rhode Island’s victory propels them to the New England Regional semi-final game and ends Connecticut’s run toward the Little League World Series.

Tobacco — and that long trail of brown spit — has long been seen as part of baseball. It was tobacco companies that created the first baseball trading cards, which came in cigarette packs.

"I looked at a newspaper in 1933 where R.J. Reynolds touted the fact that 21 of 23 of the world champion New York Giants smoked Camel," says Matthew Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

Larry Lucchino's role in seeking a new Providence ballpark for the Pawtucket Red Sox "remains unchanged," a team spokeswoman said Saturday, even though Lucchino is winding down his impactful role as CEO of the Boston Red Sox.

"Larry's role remains unchanged with respect to the PawSox ownership group," Patti Doyle said via e-mail. "He remains focused on achieving a renegotiated agreement with the state on relocating the team to a new ballpark on lands within the I-195 District [area] in Providence."

There have been 18 deaths so far this year in the city of Hartford. There were 19 in all of last year, and how to best keep the city safe is a big priority for Mayor Pedro Segarra.

But one of Segarra's chief political challengers is pointing to the baseball stadium the city is building and says the mayor has his priorities all wrong. 

Jonathan McNicol/WNPR

With a four-run, eighth-inning rally, the Freedom Division All Stars beat the Liberty Division All Stars, five to one, in the 2015 Atlantic League All-Star Game Wednesday night in Bridgeport.

Now you’re wondering: What’s the Atlantic League? What’re the Freedom and Liberty divisions? And does any of this actually matter?

Charlie Smart / WNPR

The Hartford Yard Goats unveiled their team logo on Wednesday, featuring a feisty goat chewing on a baseball bat.

The nostalgic colors and lettering refer to Hartford sports history -- the Whalers -- and the old New Haven-Hartford-New York train line logo. A "yard goat" is a term for a type of rail car.

Jonathan McNicol/WNPR

Sunday night, Major League Baseball announced the starting lineups for this year’s All-Star Game, to be held next week in Cincinnati. Well, this week, Bridgeport will host another version of all-star baseball at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard.

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Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Dunkin' Donuts is paying a fee to the Hartford Yard Goats to call the city's new minor league baseball stadium Dunkin' Donuts Park. The question is, how much -- and how much will the city actually get?

Josh Solomon owns the minor league team. He says he is bound by a confidentiality agreement with Dunkin'.  But he guaranteed that the city will get no less than the $225,000 it has budgeted for naming rights revenue. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

The stadium being built for the minor league Hartford Yard Goats now has a sponsor and a name, and the Yard Goats will play baseball at Dunkin' Donuts Park.

James Skeffington, the Providence lawyer and longtime Rhode Island deal-maker who served as the public face of the new ownership of the Pawtucket Red Sox, died Sunday at age 73.

Skeffington was the top public spokesman and cheerleader for the group that bought the PawSox in February.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Legislation that would limit the jurisdiction of municipal police officers who are enforcing local ordinances is in the state senate.

The bill was introduced in the House after an incident involving former Major League Baseball player and current ESPN analyst Doug Glanville. 

Courtesy of the New Haven Independent

About six years ago, I reported about a young fireball pitcher from New Haven named Jericho Scott. When he was just ten years old, his 40-mile-an-hour pitches were so good that one league decided he shouldn’t be allowed to pitch. The story in 2008 went flying around the Internet faster than Scott's fastball.

Ten days ago, Scott, 16 years old, was killed in a drive-by shooting in New Haven. He was a student at Wilbur Cross High School, and had continued to stand out on the ball field.

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Republicans at the state capitol hope to get out in front of their counterparts by releasing their own budget plan. But what influence will that have on the majority party? Will new casinos be part of the long-term plan?

At the national level, presidential candidates are balancing their budgets with trips to Connecticut's gold coast, including Sen. Marco Rubio who will headline a GOP fundraiser in Stamford on June 4. That's just a day after the legislative session wraps up, so there may be some tired lawmakers in attendance.

Chion Wolf

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra wants state revenue to help pay for its new $60 million minor league baseball stadium. And he took that case to the capitol Monday.

DoNo Hartford LLC

The city of Hartford wants state tax dollars to help pay back the loans on its new $60 million minor league baseball stadium built for the team that's now in New Britain, and there's a measure at the capitol to get it done. But not everyone is convinced it's a good idea. 

Schoolhouse Rocks

Many bills, including some high-profile ones face the end of their life in the 2015 legislative session. They died a slow death due to personal drama behind closed doors. That allowed an important deadline to pass before moving bills through committee.

Also, remember Keno? That game was legalized by the legislature, then repealed the following year after public outrage. But now that the state is considering more casino gambling, the state lottery is pushing for Keno again and lawmakers are listening.

While Connecticut grapples with a budget deficit, many constituencies are defending their state funding, including librarians who spoke to Gov. Malloy this week. And the Hartford registrars of voters successfully defended their jobs in court.

If this makes your head spin, at least it's baseball season and the Rock Cats get underway in their final season in New Britain. So what happens to the stadium when they move to Hartford?

In 204 days, two teams will face off in the World Series. Until then, fans can dream about their team winning it all, as Major League Baseball's regular season gets going. St. Louis and Chicago played the first game Sunday night; the Cubs lost, 3-0.

Along with that loss, Chicago's fans also endured restroom wait times of up to 30 minutes. Blaming the problem on at least two bathrooms being closed, the club has apologized, Chicago news TV WGN says.

State Representative Patricia Morgan (R-West Warwick) says she plans to introduce a bill Wednesday that would allow voters to decide if the new owners of the PawSox can use public financing or tax relief to build their envisioned ballpark on former I-195 land in Providence.


Colin McEnroe

Starbucks is trying to start conversation about race relations in America, led by baristas across the nation. The effort has had mixed reviews.  

Mathew Wilson / Creative Commons

Hartford's new minor league baseball team will be the Yard Goats. Team and city officials announced the name Wednesday, complete with two goats, after a contest to rebrand the former New Britain Rock Cats.