Titans open up on Wednesday. Hoping GM Chris Myslow gets the support he deserves to make things happen.
TORRINGTON -- I’ll preface this with a confession.
I like college baseball in Torrington. Always have.
From the days of covering Stephen Strasburg as a rookie reporter in 2007, to hosting a player in Steve Geltz (who has spent considerable time in the bigs), to one of the most polite young men I've ever met in Miles Morton, to our last player, Anthony Capuano, two years ago, I love the mission they are on.
Go back as far as the eye can see from my end and you will see nothing but glowing support for the idea of this city having a college baseball team.
It should be good for a city. Bringing baseball at the next level to a city that has a tremendous legacy of great baseball leagues and teams.
Seeing a future Strasburg or a future Geltz or any number of players from the Twisters era and from the current occupants of the college scene, the Titans, is why people come to the ballpark.
What I have tired of seeing, though, has been the continuous turnover of owners, organizations, managers and general managers.
No consistency of operation.
No build-up of trust because there was a new face every year with the same problem -- Support.
Not support from the City of Torrington, something I've heard far too often over the years.
“If the city supports us and fans show up we will be OK" was one of the most ridiculous statements I started hearing after the rebirth of the team a year after going dark following 12 years as the Twisters in the NECBL.
Support and realistic support from the folks who back the guys trying to do an impossible job that too often comes with far too many things out of their control.
It’s often been said (and I wholeheartedly agree) that if you are expecting to make money with a college baseball team, you’re crazy.
Try getting out of August with a remnant of your shirt, pray you have a good accountant and write a minimum loss off each summer.
I have met and worked with tremendous general managers since the Titans came to town, starting with Mike O’Malley to Sander Stotland to Ed Gadomski to Joey Abis to the current boss, Chris Myslow.
Only once have I met the same guy two years in a row and that’s with Myslow, who is doing a fantastic job of turning a lot of the negatives I mentioned above into positives with a lot of elbow grease and hard work.
I wish Myslow nothing but the best this year and hopefully beyond.
When the Titans start action Wednesday night against Route 7 rival Pittsfield at 7 p.m. at beautiful Fuessenich Park, I’ll be on hand to see how things shake out.
Every opening day is the same in any league anybody plays in.
Optimism abound. And why not?
Everybody is unbeaten. Everybody thinks they have the team to go all the way.
New on the bench this year is manager Dante Palazzo, who takes over for Kyle Decker, who decided to keep playing ball overseas this summer. We wish him nothing but the best of luck. He's a great young man.
What appears to be in place this year is something that’s been missing for some time -- A budget and a checkbook.
Hard to run a lemonade stand without a bit of each and for the past few years. The nickel and diming of everything left it nearly impossible for Myslow or anyone to do anything.
It was reflected in everything that happened during the season and far into the postseason when Myslow was deciding whether or not to come back.
I will give my friend Chris a great deal of credit for deciding to do just that.
Sticking to his guns that he wanted to be a good neighbor in this city, to give back whenever possible and to be a good teammate with the other leagues who call Fuessenich Park home, he has had an impact already.
Having the same GM two seasons in a row is a good start.
To the powers that be that help Myslow do his job I ask that you please continue to support (yes, that means the checkbook) so he can do whatever he needs to do without having two hands and part of a foot tied behind his back.
It’s going to rain. You're going to lose some gates you were counting on. Unexpected expenses will no doubt pop up.
Hopefully, the team has recruited good kids of character and not just characters.
The past few years the teams have been made up of good people who have learned to call Torrington home and did themselves proud on and off the field.
The “Million Dollar” job interview starts on Wednesday for these players from across the state and country.
Here’s hoping for a support system that allows Myslow and his staff to worry mostly about putting on a good show at the park, and not whether they can afford to pay the umps.