The Green Street Softball League is alive and well article that was published in the Reporter in February stated that the Marblehead Softball League was established in 1939, and was entering its 78th season in 2017.
Too many hot summer nights under the Green Street lights can make math a little fuzzy, because 2017 actually marks our 79th season of continuous league play, while still proudly boasting that it’s America’s longest standing adult softball league.
For nearly 80 seasons, eight teams have hustled each weeknight all summer long, and we are now playing on a newly improved field and proudly state that we are as strong as ever.
Here is our first half report written straight from the Green Street’s equipment shed:
Trident Electronics Recycling is led onto Green Street’s dirt diamond by manager Tyler Gill and crafty league veterans and field captains Matt “Marty” Martin and Artie DiGiovanni.
Marty’s best voice in softball is recognizable to Green Street fans like Shock-G over a 90s rap track, when he alerts everyone that a game is about to begin.
Sam Dwyer and Brian Butler make up one of the league’s toughest pitcher-catcher batteries that stood behind by Adam “Fifi the Thunderstick” Ferrante, Jason Reis, Jaime “Zap” Czapla and Brooks Glahn.
Trident has joined the league’s youth movement by recruiting new talented players such as Teddy “Mighty Mac” McNamara, Jason Harris, Kevin Costello, MC Bergeron and power-hitting outfielders Ryan McGuiness and Leo “Hot Legs” Barletta.
Although Trident (FKA: Ryan Marine) is a perennial playoff team, they’ve yet to win a league championship, dating back to when they entered the league in 1996 as the Flynnies.
With a fresh sponsorship from Charles Schwab, S.W.I. Sox have jumped out in the standings.
Behind star pitcher Pete Jaffe, the triumphant return of Pete Sheridan, solid play from the father-son combo of Clayton and Kasey Stead, Mike Lavender and “Andy-0-1-9-4-5” Thomson holding down the middle infield, Jeff “Moon Ball” Scogland smashing moon-shots, Sparky Sides, Paul “O.B.” O’Brien, Peter Pan, Greg Mahan, Fred Selvais and the “Nutty” Dave Nutt locking down the outfield, and solid play from utility personnel such as Ben “Deep Dish” Berman, Pete Burke and Andy “Camaro” Cameron the S.W.I. Sox not only hold the record for most players named Peter, but are always a top-seed contender.
Since entering the league in 1987, Dr. Hannaway’s Sneezing, Wheezing and Itching ball club waited to win its only league championship in 2011.
Kappy’s Liquors confidently boasts the highest-powered offense at Green Street.
Scott Puleo, Brian Callahan, Scott Moore, James Doughman and Kyle Beatrice are pounding the ball, while Chris “Santa” Gingle, Grant Rowland and youngster Brett Leblanc play tough defense, and they all fly on the base-paths.
Manager Justin Bush has a good thing going with Glen Messinger’s high-paced pitching and captain Tim Hawke greeting opposing batters with his small talk from behind the plate. Per usual, Mike O’Neil is leading by example by crushing hits and playing hard, scrappy ball.
Kappy’s entered the league in 2008, and won the league championship in 2010.
There is no doubt that the leaders of the Gerry 5, Frankie “FJ” James, Chris “Boom Boom” Kennedy, Chris Farwell and Mike Hartley, have benefited from playing the last 15 years with league legends Reggie Hartley and Frank James, Sr.
Gerry 5 captured the last four league championships. Farwell is quoted as saying, “G5 misses our loving, cuddly and power-hitting first baseman, Donny ‘The Golden Lab’ Marino, who is sidelined with an injury.”
However, Donny’s son, Derek Marino, has filled-in and played well with Shane James, John Kanarsky, Jumpin’ Jimmy Leavitt, Jeff Gilpatrick, Nick Bondola, Mike Gambardella, Steve Leavitt, Ryan Jarvis, Lincoln Hurney and Petey “Bomb-Pop” Sucharewicz, and as a result the cast of G5 is always poised to make noise.
Jumpin’ Jimmy and Sucharewicz hail from Peabody’s Champion League, and Leavitt states that “the G5 left its swag back in the 1970s, but we get the job done. I was baptized in Bart’s Pond, which is customary for a hardo-softball god like me. If you run on my arm I’ll lay you down like the headpin at Metro Bowl, and with Bomb-Pop crushing Green Street’s pitching like a combination plate from Ocean Delight, we’ll always be No. 1.”
Marblehead softball was dominated throughout the 1980s by the Rip Tide, led by star pitcher Dave Porter.
As the Ripper’s players age, their dynasty was quickly swapped-out by a 10-year league championship run through the 1990s by the Sail Loft (Maddie’s), which was managed by the late Dave Stern.
It was announced at the 2013 league banquet that only five teams were slated to return to Green Street for the 2014 season. That off-season and the following year, Green Street recruited new teams from Three Cod Tavern, Barrelman and Rip Tide to round out the traditional eight-team league.
With Rip Tide and Maddie’s in the hunt and the Three Cod and Barrelman showing strength in the barroom-brawls, the fun of the 1980s and 1990s are back.
Straight from the bar at the Three Cod Tavern, the Codfathers joined the fun at Green Street in 2014.
League veterans Todd ‘Triple Lindy” Norman, Mark “Maplewood” Ferrante and Mike “Bugsy” Conley are back in black to lead the Cod, while the dynamic duo of fireballer Chuck Sinclair, caught by Dan Brothers, make every opposing batter fearful of what is next.
The Cod offense is set up by John “Hoover” Cunningham, Dave “DVH” VanHoven, John Reardon, Neil Comeau and Kirk Feinswog, who line the paths for the beef provided by Justin Epstein, Matt McNamara, Keith Cooper and Blake Paynter.
Cod placed fifth the last three years, but it’s seeking its first playoff birth in 2017.
Cod manager Mike McCarthy isn’t worried, because he knows, and also reminds his opponents nightly, that when the games are over the guys on Cod are still handsome, while the rest of the league remains funky smelling and ugly.
Barrelman started slowly, but after an infusion of talent from the Nahant League – Carlo Caponigro, Tony Barletta, Mike Kelliher and Zach Taylor – to pair with all-star slugger Jason Hutchinson, the Barrelman grabbed first half wins from Kappy’s Liquors and Gerry 5.
Team managers Ben Newman and Adam Ciccio know they are on the rise since they are pairing new talent with Roger Michalowski, P.J. Cassidy, Stevie “Wonder” Walker, Sean McShane, Taylor Grabus, Brandon John, Cabot Dow and the rest of the boys that have always played above the league-average behind Rico Anzoategui’s very improved pitching, which is a true coming of age story.
Managers Dylan Crowe, Mike Weed and Andrew Borsetti leads Maddie’s on the field. Mike is followed by his brothers Jim and Steve, and is also accompanied around the dirt diamond by Chris Annesse, Jac Bentley, Jimmy Machado, Adam Fall, Joey Christensen, Chris Saulnier, Paul Leonard, Bobby Williams, Scott Degrosseilliers and Little League sensation and pride of Gatchell’s Pit Jarrett Russo.
With the recent acquisition of youngster Flynn McCormack, Maddie’s is ready to make real rumblings in the second half.
The Rip Tide is on the rise. Will Quigley and Gus Percy have pooled their young buddies Phil Coughlan, Kyle Forsgard, Dana Colton and Bling’n Bing Bial to energize Chris Grohe and Nic Corrigan’s Foul Play cast of Mike Kerble, Jeff McComish, Steve Dosch and John Monaco.
Rip Tide also boasts the father-son combo of Bill and Cole Shevory, who are playing solid all-around softball.
Don’t look now, but with a couple of quick wins the Rip Tide will be in the hunt for a playoff berth in 2017.
In summary, all is well at Green Street. We’ve been playing for 79 seasons, and it’s evident in the amount of legacy players that are marked with it is easy to see generations of Headers, who are all finding their way back to Green Street.
The Marblehead Softball League plays its games at 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday under the lights at Green Street Field at Reynold’s Playground. If you are looking to enjoy a summer night out, then we welcome you to come on down and spend it with us.