North Shore Navigators Open Season Tonight

The North Shore Navigators will open their season tonight on the road, but summer returns to Fraser Field Saturday night when they play their home opener against the Seacoast Mavericks. Game time is 6 p.m

The Navigators will feature a new manager, John Zizzo, and a roster full of new talent that includes several local players. General Manager Bill Terlecky is more than ready to get things rolling after a long, hard winter that saw Fraser Field buried under three-feet of snow with spring knocking on the door.

“We’re looking forward to getting going,” Terlecky said earlier this week. “The ballpark is just about ready to go. Visitors can expect the same type of atmosphere and good times we’ve been able to establish the last couple of years.”

Opening Night, which traditionally draws one of the biggest crowds of the season, will kick off with Lynn’s Katie Burt, who is coming off a hugely successful freshman season as goalie for the Boston College women’s ice hockey team, throwing out the first pitch. Although hockey is her life these days, the 18-year-old played baseball growing up and was an all-star at both the Little League and Babe Ruth level.

As far as the 2015 coaching staff goes, Zizzo replaces Jon Cahill as manager. Zizzo’s resume includes a stint as a minor league hitting coach with the Colorado Rockies organization. He hails from Youngstown, Ohio, and brings 35 years of baseball experience with him including coaching jobs at Youngstown State and Indiana University.

Some of the fan favorites, like $1 hot dogs, youngsters running across the outfield and fireworks on Friday nights will be back for the 2015 season. Terlecky said the big thing this season will be the Futures League All-Star game, which is being played at Fraser Field on July 21.

“It’s a great opportunity to show off to the rest of the league what we’ve got going here in Lynn with the Navigators,” Terlecky said.

Every year the Navigators have a couple of local guys on the roster and this summer is no different. Former Lynn English standout Junior Santos is on the team, as are Swampscott’s Tim Cassidy, a pitcher for the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Trevor Massey, also a pitcher and also from Swampscott, who just completed his freshman year at Boston College.

Cassidy played for the Navigators in 2012 and helped lead that team to the FCBL Championship (the Navs lost to the Nashua Silver Knights). After graduating from Swampscott High, he did a post-graduate year at Tilton Academy where he was named a First Team All-Lakes Regional All-Star, team MVP and Tilton spring Athlete of the Year. Scott Hovey, a right-handed pitcher from Danvers High and the Salisbury School, currently plays at UMass Amherst after an impressive year at the Salisbury School. While at Danvers High, his team won three Northeastern Conference championships.

“As far as the team, I’m pretty excited,” Terlecky said, adding that several of the newest Navs are coming off impressive seasons at the college level.

Chad Martin (Bowdoin) plays first and hit over .300, Terlecky said. Rich Fecteau hit over .400 at Salem state and outfielder Giovanni Dingcong from Brooklyn, N.Y., hit .350 as a freshman at St. Thomas Aquinas.

Terlecky is also excited about some other things the team has in the works. On Sunday, the players from Lynn’s five Little Leagues have been invited to the game where they can participate in a

“Funraiser” to benefit the Jimmy Fund. They’ll be attending courtesy of Old Neighborhood Foods. Players and coaches have been challenged to a “buzz it off” right after the game. Hair dressers from Salon & Spa 234 will set up in the ballpark. They’ll donate the

Navigators GM Bill Terlecky is getting ready for the team’s season opener Saturday night.

Navigators GM Bill Terlecky is getting
ready for the team’s season opener Saturday night.

ir time to cut any and all players’ and coaches’ hair for $5 with the money going to the Jimmy Fund. The Navigators’ owner, attorney Pat Salvi, will match every $5 buzz it off donation which translates into a $10 donation to the Jimmy Fund for every person who participates.

The Navigators open the season tonight on the road against the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks. They play at the  Bristol Blues on Friday night and then they’re back to Lynn for opening night. Fraser Field will be hopping over the next week or so with several MIAA state tournament baseball games also slated to be played there. English is home today against Chelmsford at 4 p.m. and Classical plays Winchester tonight at 7 p.m. St. Mary’s will play Newburyport at Fraser at 4 p.m. on Friday.

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