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Three “Beep” Book signing events coming to Boston area in June!

Beep Inside the Unseen World of Baseball for the Blind

Three book signings will be in the area in JuneWe are excited to announce three book signings coming to our area in June!  The World’s first ever book about the sport of beep baseball was published in April of 2018.  Author David Wancyzk found this sport and decided to check out the finals of the 2012 World Series in Ames, Iowa.  Once there, the sport caught Dave’s attention and he felt he had a story to tell.  Little did he know at this time, that he would get hooked on the sport.  His trip to Ames Iowa was just the beginning.  He traveled to Georgia, Minnesota, New York, the Dominican Republic and even Taiwan to get the scoop on the sport.

Boston Featured in the Book

As Wanczyk was trying to piece together an idea of a story, he needed to find some teams to follow.  The Austin Blackhawks and Taiwan Home Run hooked him with so many interesting back stories to dive into.  After all, these were the two teams he saw face off in that 2012 World Series.  Being born and raised in Massachusetts, he started to dig around about the Boston Renegades. and eventually adopted the Gades as one of his under dog darlings for the story.  He picked up our journey in 2013 in Georgia and spent countless hours on our bench, in our hotel and doing phone interviews.  He dug deeper during the off season and came back in 2014 in Minnesota to see the team make big improvements.  Readers will feel like they are on the Renegades bench during the games.  They will get a sense of what makes the Renegade culture unique and special.  Wanczyk takes you into the team meetings and looks at the competition from many angles that are both enjoyable and insightful to read.

Three Book Signings in Mass in June – Come Join us!

Author David Wanczyk gives a talk

Author David Wanczyk will be reading from his book at three book signings in the Massachusetts area

David Wanczyk will be in the Massachusetts area in early June doing three book signings.  Here he will read passages and answer questions about the book, the sport and his experience.  He will also be very willing to share  some fun stories about his experience with his hometown, Boston Renegades and its players & coaches.   His book tour consists of the following dates and Venues

We have set up some facebook events for the signings in Cambridge and Acton if you would like to sign up and see who is going.

More about the book and our spin on it

Check out who was interviewed, where to buy the book and much more in a post we wrote in April here

Here is a fun excerpt from the book showing the writers wit and sense of humor in explaining the sport

” Guy Zuccarello, whose slimness and aww-shucks grin make him seem like Captain America before the serum, scores on a three-bounce single through the left side, and the Heat are in disarray.  Gers pipes up again, and a Boston Coach-These guys are like codebreakers with their lingo—calls Zuccarello’s modest smash “a lowercase bomb with double stars.”  He draws a diagram on a scouting report…”

photos of Captain America and Guy Zuccarello

Photos of Captain America before the serum, Captain America and our leader, Guy Zuccarello

Making the Podcast and book review circuit

Beep Inside the Unseen World of Baseball for the blind was one of the top 100 books about baseball on Amazon in April.  It also has drawn interest from media around the country.  To hear Wanczyk talk about the book, listen to a few of his interviews, and read reviews of the book below:

We hope you consider coming to one of these events and/or buying a copy of the book to learn more about this amazing sport, it’s athletes and the Boston Renegades culture.

The World’s first ever book about beep baseball features the Boston Renegades!

The World’s first ever book about beep baseball features the Boston Renegades!  Author David Wanczyk published a book about beepball, which he first became interested in during the title game of the 2012 season.  He caught the fever and then decided to follow the sport intensely for the 2013, 2014 and 2015 seasons. Dave spent a lot of time with the Renegades in the hotel, on the bench, on the phone and around the World Series.  He even spent time at the McCormick household.

On the Radio

Recently, Dave hit the airwaves to promote his new book called Beep Inside the Unseen World of Baseball for the Blind.  On Friday, March 30th David appeared on BYU Radio on a show called Top of mind with Julie Rose.  Julie was a well informed interviewer and talked about the book with Dave for nearly 50 minutes.  Dave even read some passages from the book to give you a flavor of his writing style.  You can listen to that interview here

Buy it on Amazon

The book is available on Amazon for purchase in both hard cover and kindle version and can be purchased here 

Beep and the Renegades

It was an honor to share the sport with Dave.  He became part of our team and got to know many of our athletes and volunteers.   Here is a small quote from the 218 page book.

“…The Renegades spooled off stories about blindness and baseball and let me into their team jokes, their judgements of other players, and their nicknames for each other.  Larry Haile, who travels all over the world to ride on subway systems that intrigue him is “L train”.  Shayne Cantan, who is of Hawaiian descent and had gained weight since his last season, is “Hawaiian Lunch.

I asked “Lunch” and “Train” and the coaches what would constitute success in the series.

I think everyone has a different definition of winning the tournament,” coach Justin Manjourides said.

“Oh, start coaching girls’ softball, for god’s sake,” pitcher Ron Cochran said (Cochran does, it turns out, coach his daughters’ softball teams.)…”

Wanczyk and the Boston Globe

Photo by Dina Rudick/Boston GlobeIn May, 2014, Wanczyk wrote an article about our very own Joe McCormick.  That article appeared in the Globe Magazine.  This article was amazing and did a great job of promoting the book almost four years before it was published.  You can read more about that article here

Who did he talk to from the gades?

Dave interviewed many of the Renegades including: Shayne Cantan, Ron Cochran, Rob Dias, Bryan Grillo, Lisa Klinkenberg, Justin Manjourides, Joe McCormick, Joey O’Neill, Joe Quintanilla, Aqil Sajjad, Sean Sweeney, Rob Thayer, Dino Vasille, Rob Weissman and Guy Zuccarello

He also spent time with some of our fans including Ashley Borders, Sarah Ellen Cochran and Dawn McCormick

Christian Thaxton appeared on NPR’s “Only a Game”

On Saturday, August 12th, Christian Thaxton appeared on NPR’s “Only a Game” which aired nationally.  Only a Game is an Acclaimed show on NPR radio that has an audience of nearly a half a million listeners.  The story was a seven and a half minute piece that can be listened to our read on their web page at this link

Christian is an amazing man with a great outlook on life despite losing his vision only a few short years ago.  Not only does he make the Renegades better on the field, he helps make them better off the field a well.  In 2017, Christian set a league record for the highest batting average in league history.  That story can be explored here:

We want to thank Producer Gary Waleik for being interested in the story and doing such a good job telling it.  We also need to give Bryan Grillo of the Renegades some love as he has always wanted us to appear on this show and created the pitch tat caught Gary’s eyes.  Here are a few pictures of Christian at WBUR where he went into the studio to tell his story

Renegade Christian Thaxton in the studio at WBUR for Only a game

Christian telling his story in the WBUR studio

Christian Thaxton with the only a game producer

Christian Poses with Gary Waleik of WBUR after the show

Christian Thaxton stands in front of the WBUR sign

Christian Thaxton stands in front of the WBUR sign

 

 

 

 

The Renegades Featured Prominently in the News During July

The Renegades featured in the Boston Globe

The Renegades were featured in an article about the Beast of the East Championship.  The articles ran in the north and west editions of the Sunday Globe.

Renegades featured twice in the Watertown Tab

The Renegades were features in an article in the Watertown Tab this past week in the lead up to the Beast of the East tournament in Woburn.
They were then featured again after they won the Beast of the East tournament.  This second article also ran on the Waltham Wicked Local site.

Local Boston TV news stations ran several stories on the Renegades and the Beast of the east Tournament

 

Melissa Hoyt featured in article on Mito Action Website

Mellisa Hoyt was recently featured in an article on the Mito Action website. The article talks about Mellisa and her fight with mitochondrial disease. It also talks about beep baseball, the Renegades and how Mellisa, as the only female member of the team, is an inspiration. Mellisa recently threw out the first pitch at a Red Sox game, while the rest of the team stood on the filed with her. The full article can be read on the mitoaction.org website.

The Renegades win the Beast of the East for the 7th time!

The Renegades win the Beast of the East for the 7th Time!  Though it sounds easy, it’s a ton of blood sweat, tears and hard work.  The Renegade coaches and players only do some of that work.  The Woburn Host Lions did plenty of that work as well.  In the end, 6 teams traveled to Woburn, 9 games were played.  A ton of food was consumed.  We got wet from a short storm.  The crack PR team of the Renegades kicked some collective but and the media loved the story.  Here are some of the highlights of the day from the Renegades perspective.  There will be more to come for sure!!!

Game Scores

1st time slot

  • Philly defeated Rochester 5-1
  • Boston Defeated NJ Titans 15-2 (game entered the mercy rule system after 3 innings)
  • Long Island Defeated the NJ Lightning 7-5

2nd time slot

  • New Jersey Titans defeated Rochester 7-5
  • Boston Defeated NJ Lightning 15-2 (game entered the mercy rule system after 3 innings)
  • Long Island defeated Philly 6-3

3rd time slot

  • New Jersey Lightning defeated Rochester 6-4
  • Boston Defeated Long Island 15-2 (game entered the mercy rule system after 3 innings)
  • Philly defeated the NJ Titans 10-1

Final Standings of the 2017 Beast of the East

Team Wins Losses
Boston 6 0
Long Island 4 2
Philly 3 3
NJ Titans 3 3
NJ Lightning 1 5
Rochester 0 6

Most Impressive stat of the day includes:

Picture of the back of the Shirt showing all the sponsors who helped make up this huge donation to the teams

The Woburn Host Lions donated $1,000 to each team. Here are all of the sponsors who helped them make this possible

The Woburn Host Lions club did something that is unlikely never ben matched in the existence of the NBBA.  They handed out $1,000 checks to EVERY team that competed to help them with their expenses!  That means that they raised $6,000 for the teams to play beep baseball.  When this was announced the teams roared in applause and shock.  Running a beep baseball program is a lot of hard work and costs a lot of money.  A trip for the team to go to the World Series costs in excess of $10,000.   What the Woburn Host Lions did on this day was truly amazing.  We know they got a lot of support to make this happen.  No matter who won the actual games, the Woburn Host Lions won the day for their hard work.  Pictured here is the back of the T- Shirts they made (and also donated to all of the teams) showing all of the sponsors who helped make this possible)

 

 

Members of all of the teams take a picture with the Woburn Host Lions after getting their checks
After the checks were received the teams took a picture with the Lions.  Front Row left to Right:Leah Werner (Rochester), Kirstyn Smith (Rochester), Steve Rutch (NJ Titans), Rob Weissman (Renegades), Dino Vasile (Lions).  Back row Left to Right: BJ Callahan (Lions, Joe Puvogel (Long Island), Joe Dejesus (Long Island), Tony Santiago (Rochester), Bob Memory (Philly), Willy Natoli (Philly), Braulio Thorne (Long Island), Frank DiMauro (Lions), Paul Schmiedel (Lions).  Very back row:  Jamie Redmond (Rochester)

Media Coverage

We had a tremendous response to our call to tell our story to the world.  We really want to get the word out with the hope we can find a few people out there who may never have heard of us and would love to play or coach.  We also want to show people that Disability is spelled with Ability!  Here are links to all of the great stories we had

Television stations

Print Media

Podcasts

Facebook Live

Did you miss any of the action?  We caught all of the Renegade games on Facebook live.  You can see the games here:

Game #1 Boston vs the NJ Titans:

Game #2 Boston vs the NJ Lightning

Game #3 Boston vs Long Island – 1st 2 innings before rain delay

Game #3 Boston vs Long Island – After the rain delay

Joe Quintanilla named to the Cambridge Athletic Hall of Fame

On April 29th, Joe Quintanilla was named to the Cambridge Athletic Hall of Fame.  “Q”,  who owns the Renegade record for most games played entered got his start in sports long before he started playing ball in 2000.  Q’s roots as an athlete started long before the Renegades.  He ran 11 different seasons as a member of the cross country and indoor/outdoor track teams before graduating high school in 1994.  Joe Also ran the Boston Marathon, ran as part of Boston College and made the 1996 Paralympics team in Atlanta as a representative of the United States.  Congrats.  You are not an Average Joe!

Thanks to Chris Cavallerano, we have a copy of this video on our youtube channel

 

Attached is a picture of his article in the program that the Hall of Fame published for that night

Joe Quintanilla's Hall of Fame article from the April 29th induction ceremony

 

 

Smartest Player in the NBBA has to be Aqil Sajjad

Picture of Aqil Sajjad in the field with text from the show Big Bang Theory

Who is the Smartest player in the NBBA?  Well, there is no official way to measure this but Aqil Sajjad would likely be at the top of any list.  Afterall, how many NBBA players (let alone how many people) have a PHD from Harvard in Theoretical Particle Physics.  Aqil graduated from Harvard in 2014 and what he has accomplished without his sight is amazing and inspirational for many.  He has been the subject of many articles and recently was part of a podcast.  Keep in mind that Aqil has no usable sight and relies on technology and his big brain to help him with all of the equations.

Aqil On The Field

Aqil Sajjad played with the Renegades from 2009-2015.  He took the 2016 season off to get married and prepare for the next chapter in his life, but has hopes of being able to return to the team in 2017.  In his time on the field, he has been one of the most dedicated players. Through the 2016 season, he ranks 10th all-time in games played with 87.  He also owns a lifetime .282 batting average and has made 39 stops on defense.  He ranks 5th in team history in putting the ball into play at 81.3%.  Beyond the stats, we will always remember him falling asleep on a short van ride back to a hotel and then falling out of the van when the door opened.  Aqil – he is for Real!

Here are some links to get to know the Aqil Sajjad, the smartest guy in the league