Monthly Archives: July 2018


LYNN — Devin Curley couldn’t have asked for a better senior year at Lynn English High. In the fall, Curley helped lead the football team to a 10-1 season in a year that saw the Bulldogs fall one victory short of winning Division 3 North. In the winter, he helped lead the English swimming and diving team to victory in the Lynn City Meet.

The spring didn’t go as well as he had hoped it would, as the English baseball team went 8-12 thanks in part to falling on the wrong end of multiple close-margin games.

Now Curley has a chance to flip his baseball script with the World Series-bound Lynn Babe Ruth 16-18-year-old All-Stars.

“It’s been a lot of fun playing with this team all summer,” Curley, a right-handed pitcher, said. “I remember when (Lynn coach) Leon (Elwell) told me about playing for this team. He told me we’d have a chance to make the World Series. I remember two years ago when a lot of these guys went to the (15-year-old) World Series. It’s been a lot of fun and it turns out we won regionals and now we’re going to the World Series.”

Lynn emerged as the last team standing in the New England Regionals last week, sealing its bid in the Babe Ruth World Series. The World Series will be played in Jamestown, N.Y. and runs from August 4-August 11. The Lynners play their first game of the tournament Saturday afternoon (2:30) against Fairfax County of Virginia.

“It feels really good representing Lynn, Massachusetts and New England,” Curley, who’ll attend UMass Lowell in the fall, said. “It’s been a lot of fun with the team, the coaches. My high school baseball career was a lot of fun and now it’s great to get a chance to play for a World Series in New York.”

Curley played a huge role in Lynn’s success during regionals. In the tournament opener against Keene (N.H.), Curley tossed seven shutout innings, while allowing just two hits with seven strikeouts. He followed with another dominant performance in the tournament final when he limited Cape Cod to just one run over seven innings with six strikeouts.

For his stellar outings, Curley was awarded the MVP award of the regional tournament. And that’s in the wake of a collarbone injury Curley suffered during the winter.

“It meant a lot,” Curley said. “I didn’t play so much my sophomore year at English. I was an ‘alright’ pitcher coming in. I broke my collarbone in February. I went snowboarding and fell on my collarbone, and ended up having surgery on it. Now to be pitching at this level, it’s a lot of fun.

“I had a lot of fun with English,” Curley said. “We had a couple bad breaks. It’s been fun playing with a group of kids from Lynn. It’s great to have a chance to win a championship with this team.”

As the team closes in on its first World Series game, Curley has nothing but confidence in Lynn’s chances on the national stage. Curley said the team has built an enjoyable atmosphere throughout the summer, one that’ll carry over to Jamestown.

“(I enjoy) the atmosphere of the whole team,” Curley said. “Everyone wants to come down, have fun and play baseball. The coaches (Elwell and Al Donovan) do a great job of showing us things and helping us with the areas that we need to fix. Everyone does a good job of coming down to the field and competing.

“It’s been a great ride,” Curley said of his baseball career. “Starting from East Lynn, Babe Ruth and all the way through English.”

For the past week, the team has asked the Lynn community for help in fundraising for the trip to Jamestown. Babe Ruth pays for one way of transportation, but the rest of the costs have to be financed by the team. The Lynners expect they’ll need somewhere around $8,000 to fund their necessary costs.

Word about the team’s success has made its way through the community and Devin said it’s a good feeling to have Lynn’s support.

“I’ve had people come up to me and say ‘good luck’ and these are people I don’t even know,” Curley said. “I was canning the other day and I had a lady come up to me and say ‘I saw your gofundme page. We’re rooting for you guys and wishing you the best of luck.’”

Lynn departs for Jamestown from Bowzer Complex Thursday morning.

By | July 31st, 2018|News|0 Comments


LYNN — Thursday night’s Babe Ruth 16-18-year-old New England Regional opening game between host Lynn and Keene (N.H.) belonged to pitcher Devin Curley. The Lynn starter tossed seven shutout innings and kept Keene’s bats quiet through the night, leading his team to a 2-0 victory at Fraser Field.

Curley threw 89 pitches in his efficient start and tallied seven strikeouts in the win.

“Devin was the man on the mound,” Lynn coach Al Donovan said. “He goes seven innings and throws 89 pitches, that’s really good. That’s 12.5 pitches an inning. We’ll take that all day long. We couldn’t have asked for anything more from Devin.

“When you pitch in a ballpark like this, Devin’s smart enough to go right at hitters,” Donovan added. “You’re not going to have guys hitting home runs out of here. We have a stellar defense in the outfield with Colin Reddy, Kyle Ouellette, who made a great catch in foul territory, and Brett Bucklin. You’re not going to get three better outfielders.”

With the victory, the Lynners moved into the winner’s bracket of the regional tournament. Lynn battles against Norwalk (CT) Friday night (7) at Fraser Field.

“Norwalk’s a good team,” Donovan said. “We’ll have David Barnard going on the mound. We’ll expect big things from David. He’s always a grinder, he’s always around the plate. He always competes at a high level. We feel confident with him coming in.”

The Lynners saw no shortage of scoring opportunities through the first two innings but couldn’t score. Lynn left runners on second and third in the bottom of the first inning and the bases loaded in the second frame.

“We had five batters in the first inning and six batters in the second inning, and we couldn’t push a run across,” Donovan said. “We have to have a better approach at the plate. One out with runners on second and third, you have to score a run and put the ball in play. You can’t hit it back to the pitcher. Unfortunately we hit the ball right back to the pitcher a few times in situations with guys on base and less than two outs. We have to score on those. We left a lot of guys on base.”

In the bottom of the third, they pounced on another scoring chance to grab a 1-0 lead. Ouellette (2-for-3, run) roped a one-out single to start the rally and advanced to third base after Barnard reached on an infield error. Anthony Nikolakakis (0-for-3, RBI) grounded into a 5-4 fielder’s choice and Ouellette crossed home plate with the game’s first run, giving Lynn a 1-0 lead.

That’s how it stayed through the next 3 1/2 innings but the 1-0 edge was all the run support Curley needed. Curley sent Keene down in order in the top of the fourth and worked his way around a one-out single in the fifth inning.

“We’re going to make the plays for Devin and that’s exactly what we did,” Donovan said. “Devin only walked two guys and we’ll take that. Our goal here as a team is to stay at three walks or under every game. If we do that, we’ll be in the game.”

Lynn added an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth. Danny Lilja drew a one-out walk and stole second base. Curley, helping his own cause, advanced Lilja to third base with a groundout. Jomar Moreta (1-for-2) followed with a sharply hit line-drive that ricocheted off Keene’s shortstop’s glove, allowing Lilja to score Lynn’s second run.

Curley allowed a two-out walk in the top of the sixth and a one-out walk in the top of the seventh but buckled down, with stellar defense on his side, to keep Keene off the board.

Lynn’s game Friday night is the final contest of a triple-header at Fraser. Cape Cod plays PNJ Worcester in the afternoon (1), followed by a tilt between Keene and the winner of Cape Cod/PNJ Worcester (4).

By | July 19th, 2018|News|0 Comments


LYNN — The Lynn 13-year-old Babe Ruth All-Stars accomplished what they set out for Thursday evening at Breed Middle School. Lynn took advantage of a plethora of Braintree miscues, plating six runs in the first inning, and never looked back in a 15-2 mercy-rule win.

“It was a solid win,” Lynn manager Paul Hartford said. “(Starting pitcher) Yordy (Contreras) didn’t have his best stuff but he managed to gut it out. We helped him out by picking it up on offense, smart baserunning. Great job once again by these guys.”

Contreras earned the nod on the mound and pitched the first four innings. He allowed two earned runs on five hits, walked one and struck out one. Knicko Ramirez followed in relief and pitched a scoreless fifth inning, despite allowing one hit and one walk.

From the early goings of the tilt it seemed as though No. 15 Braintree simply couldn’t help itself. No. 2 Lynn plated six runs on just two base hits in the bottom of the first to take an early commanding lead. Shea Palmer (2-for-2, RBI) hit a RBI single, scoring Brady Warren (0-for-2, RBI) with the game’s first run. Eldrian Bonilla (0-for-1, 2 RBI) drew a bases-loaded walk, scoring Ramirez for the 2-0 lead. Jack Marks (2-for-2, RBI) continued the rally with a RBI single, plating Deniel Ortiz (2-for-2, 2 RBI) and stretching Lynn’s lead to 3-0.

Palmer and Bonilla raced home on consecutive passed balls and Marks scored on a wild pitch, pacing the Lynners to a 6-0 lead after one inning.

“Braintree played five one-run games,” Hartford said. “Capitalizing on every mistake they made just helped our offense because we didn’t really hit the ball in the first inning. Smart baserunning, they made some errors and we were alive, ready to play. Normally we might’ve scored two runs in that inning. Because we were smart and paid attention we wound up with six. That buries you as a team, down 6-0 after one inning with our best pitcher on the mound.

Hartford added, “It’s crucial and these guys have been very good at taking advantage of errors.”

Showing no quit after the sour start, Braintree answered with a pair of tallies in the top of the second on back-to-back two-out RBI singles. That, however, was all the scoring Braintree had in store.

Contreras (1-for-3, RBI) hit a RBI single in the second and Bonilla added a RBI groundout in the third, bumping Lynn’s lead to 8-2.

Things got out of hand in the bottom of the fourth, when the Lynners added seven runs to their advantage to run away with the win.

Warren started the scoring with a sac-fly, bringing Jack Anderson (1-for-3) home. Ortiz followed with a 2-RBI double to make it an 11-2 lead. After Palmer reached on an error, Ortiz raced home on a double-steal. Bonilla walked and a single by Marks rolled past Braintree’s right-fielder, granting Lynn three more runs for a 15-2 rout.

Ramirez worked his way through a jam with two Braintree runners on base in the top of the fifth, sealing the 15-2 Lynn victory.

Despite the tough reality that a loss Thursday would’ve ended Lynn’s season, the team embraced the challenge and kept its normal approach. Having fun on the diamond has been a top priority and the Lynners won’t change that anytime soon.

“This is a crazy bunch,” Hartford said. “If you listen to some of their conversations in the dugout sometimes you wouldn’t even know they’re in a game. They’re just a loosy goosy bunch. They really are but they’ve played together for a couple years. Most of them were on the Gallant team last year. They know what it takes to win. They’ve been successful together, they’ve had some heartbreaking games but they feel like they’re a family together. It’s fun to coach them.

Hartford added, “My (assistant) coaches Chris Warren and Jay Bullock have done a nice job getting these guys ready as well.”

Lynn shifts its focus to preparing for Saturday afternoon’s (3) state tournament quarterfinal game in Taunton. Lynn will battle against the winner between Weymouth and Franklin.

By | July 8th, 2018|News|0 Comments


LYNN — When the Lynn 13-year-old Babe Ruth All-Stars score runs, they score them in bunches. That was the clear message Saturday evening in Lynn’s 10-3 win over Swampscott at Breed Middle School.

The Lynners did the bulk of their damage in two innings, plating four runs in the top of the first and tacking on six more tallies in the top of the sixth.

“We came to life in that sixth inning,” Lynn manger Paul Hartford said. “I think we realized that the game was on the line. We didn’t want to have to play a game (tonight). We knew had to step it up and fortunately we were able to battle back.”

With the victory, Lynn continues its quest in the state tournament. The Lynners are 4-0 in tournament play and will host a home game Thursday when they take the field in the round of 16 as the No. 2 seed.

Swampscott, on the other hand, is eliminated from the tournament.

“We only have one Babe Ruth team at the 13-year-old level,” Swampscott manager Rich Reiling said. “I thought outside that one inning (top of the sixth) we played very well against one of the best teams in the league. I’m certainly proud of (starting pitcher) Jansen Landing and Sam Kearney caught every inning of the tournament for us. They really did a good job.”

Lynn started on the right foot with a 4-run top of the first. Back-to-back walks allowed Brady Bullock to score the game’s first run on an infield error. Knico Ramirez (1-for-4, 2 RBI) followed with a 2-run single, scoring Brady Warren and Yordy Contreras, bumping Lynn’s lead to 3-0. Deniel Ortiz’s sac-fly plated Ramirez and stretched Lynn’s advantage to 4-0.

Swampscott answered quickly with three runs in the bottom half of the first. A Lynn error, a walk and hit batsman loaded the bases for Max Brodsky (1-for-3, 2 RBI), who roped a 2-RBI single, plating Jansen Landen and John Cuttle. Brendan Norton raced home on a wild pitch and Swampscott found itself back in the game, down 4-3 after one inning.

“This is usually a pretty good hitting team,” Reiling said. “Lynn just has excellent pitching. They’ve scored a lot of runs in this tournament. It was pretty clear we weren’t going to score too many so I was glad we got a couple in the first.”

Both starting pitchers settled down after the first inning. Swampscott’s Landen pitched 5 1/3 innings and kept his team in the game until Lynn rallied again in the sixth inning. Landen finished with four strikeouts.

Lynn’s Ortiz bounced back after a tough start in the opening frame and pitched six innings with  nine strikeouts.

“He (Ortiz) settled in nicely,” Hartford said. “He was rushing it a little bit. He hasn’t pitched in about a week. I don’t if he wasn’t ready but he hit a batter and walked a batter. That’s not what he usually does. Once we got that double play to end the (first) inning, he settled down after that and pitched very well.”

Lynn put the game away with six runs in the top of the sixth. Shea Palmer (1-for-4, RBI) started the rally with a RBI double and Jack Marks (1-for-3, RBI) added a RBI triple, making it a 6-3 Lynn lead. Marks scored on Dom Giordano’s (1-for-2, RBI) RBI single, boosting the lead to 7-3.

Heads-up baserunning allowed Lynn to add three more runs to their advantage. Marcus Martinez, Jack Anderson and Bullock each sprinted home on wild pitches, propelling Lynn to a 10-3 lead after five and a half innings.

Ortiz sent Swampscott down in order in the bottom of the sixth and Bullock closed the win with a 1-2-3 seventh.

By | July 2nd, 2018|News|0 Comments