Saturday, December 28, 2013
American Legion Baseball Northeast Regional Finalist East Side Post 201 Doles Out Annual Awards
Worcester, MA --- For the second time in three years, the East Side Post 201 Raiders doled out major awards as part of its annual
banquet following a season that saw the team participate in the American Legion Baseball Northeast Regional tournament. Like the 2011
event, this year’s celebration was held at the Italian American Civic Club on Lake Ave.
Joe Consolmagno was named the Most Valuable Player while Regan Aghdam took home Best Defensive Player accolades. Jimmy Smith
was honored as the Best Hitter and Tim Brutto earned the coveted Commander Award. Zach Zona claimed Best Pitcher laurels and
Peter Bovenzi was named the Rookie of the Year.
Consolmagno racked up 42 hits – 10 doubles, five triples and two home runs - in 115 at bats for a .322 average. He scored 26 runs and
added 34 RBI and stole 14 bases on 15 tries. He went on a 15-game hitting streak, highlighted by a trio of hits in each National Bound
State Tournament game, and racked up five RBI against Walpole and at Wachusett. The streak also included a pinch hit three-RBI
double against Northbridge.
In 37 2/3 innings on the mound over 12 appearances, Consolmagno turned in a 5-2 mark including a masterful 7 2/3 against Barnstable to
send the Raiders to the regional title game. He struck out 33 and earned a pair of saves in 2013. Consolmagno also struck out four in five
scoreless innings at Main South to help the Raiders clinch a spot in the Zone 4 National Bound title game.
The four-year Raider accumulated 136 hits – 26 doubles, 14 triples, six home runs - in 422 at-bats (.322) with 104 runs, 91 RBI, 78 walks
and was 50-of-55 in stolen bases. On the mound, Consolmagno went 9-4 with 56 strikeouts in 25 appearances with three complete games
and two saves in 78 1/3 innings.
Aghdam recorded 47 outs and notched 81 assists and was a part of eight double plays, including two in the regional opener against
Colchester, VT and two in the win over eventual regional champion Branford, CT. In the regional final, Aghdam made a spectacular stab
with a leap to his right to retire the first batter of the second inning. As a pitcher, Aghdam made nine appearances – six starts - for a total
of 27 2/3 innings with 23 strikeouts. At the plate, Aghdam racked up 27 hits, including eight doubles and a triple as he drove in 17 runs
and crossed home plate 30 times. He shined against Sudbury in the national bound semifinals (3-for-6, 2 RBI, run, double) and, for the
second time in three years, was the hero in the Raiders third regional game as he had a hand in all three runs against Rochester, NH.
In five years as a Raider, Aghdam recorded 117 hits in 141 games – 131 starts – with 29 doubles, four triples and a key ninth-inning home
run to keep the Red and Black alive in 2011 Northeast Regional. He drove in 69 and scored 115 runs, walked 77 times and was hit 32 times
and was 22-of-26 in stolen base attempts. Aghdam finished with an 8-3 record – 6-0 in 2011 – with two complete games and 50 Ks in 76
innings. He started the 2011 State Championship game and struck out three in four strong innings of work.
Smith hit .436 this past season and touted a .408 average over his two years as a member of the Red and Black. The leadoff hitter singled
44 times and stole 29 bases on 31 attempts in 36 games. He also recorded 14 extra base hits (10 doubles, three triples, homerun) for an
OPS of 1.072 (.579 slugging , .465 on base) and 17 RBI and 34 runs scored. Smith had 19 multiple hit outings and capped a 10-game
hitting streak with an eye-popping 5-for-6 night against Barnstable in state title game.
In all, Smith recorded 97 hits in 238 at-bats with 26 for extra bases, as well as 38 RBI, 65 runs scored and a 1.024 OPS. He also stole 45
bases on 47 attempts and had a fielding percentage of .980 (134-of-137).
Brutto batted .295 in 2013 with 10 extra-base hits (nine doubles, homerun), 23 RBI and 34 runs scored. He recorded multiple hits in
eight games and had a seven game hitting streak, of which five were in the beginning of the 11 game First 13 winning-streak. His two-run
blast lifted the Raiders past Cherry Valley in a 2-for-3, two-RBI, two-run outing and kept the Raiders Zone 4 National Bound
championship game hopes alive with a walkoff single vs Wachusett. In 12 appearances for a total of 15 innings pitched, Brutto set down 13
batters via the strikeout and registered a 1.87 ERA and collected a trio of saves and did not allow an earned run in 10 outings.
For his career, Brutto batted .302 in 62 games with 58 hits, 37 RBI and 52 runs scored in addition to a 1.17 ERA, 24 strikeouts, four saves
and a 1-1 record in 18 appearances.
Zona went 7-1 with a 2.06 ERA and three complete games, including two shutouts – one shared, in nine appearances as a Raider. He
struck out 60 batters in 57 2/3 innings pitched and held opponents to a .157 batting average. His defining moment came as he called for
the ball and started on two days rest to help the Raiders defeat Branford, CT and setup a rematch with Barnstable for the rights to play for
the regional title. In his two starts in the regional tournament, Zona won two games, tossed 252 pitches and recorded a dozen strikeouts
in 14 innings of work. Earlier in the season, Zona struck out a season-high 10 batters at Grafton Hill and earned wins against Leominster
in the Zone 4 National Bound title game and Walpole in the National Bound State Tournament opener.
After seeing action in five games in 2012, Bovenzi hit .323 in 21 games with 13 RBI and two extra-base hits (triple, homerun) to go along
with 13 RBI and 15 runs scored. Bovenzi batted 3-for-4 with an RBI in the Zone 4 National Bound Championship and went 2-for-2 with
four RBI and three runs scored to go with a triple and a walk as the Raiders topped Framingham 15-6 in five innings. His home run,
meanwhile, served as the equalizer in the bottom of the sixth in the First 13 win against Wachusett.
On the mound, Bovenzi went 2-2 in 19 1/3 innings over seven appearances with 24 strikeouts, including a seven-strikeout relief win
against Rochester, NH as he made two appearances on Sunday, August 11 to help the Raiders survive and advance further than any
previous East Side team. Earlier in the season, Bovenzi allowed only two hits and struck out eight in a complete game shutout against
The 55th version of the Raiders, under first-year head coach Dan Generelli, went 25-11 overall and 18-8 in Zone 4 play, and won 17
elimination games, including 11 of the last First 13 games to earn a spot in the Zone 4 National Bound championship game. After defeating
Leominster, who had swept the Raiders in the season-opening doubleheader, to capture the Zone 4 title, East Side won two games to
reach the National Bound State Tournament finals. Post 201 then took advantage of a format change that allowed the Massachusetts
runner-up to compete in the 2013 American Legion Baseball Northeast Regional Tournament as the Raiders reached the title game with
wins over Colchester, VT, Rochester, NH, Branford, CT and Barnstable in a rematch of the state title tilt.
This year’s roster also included (in numerical order) Sean Murphy, Erik Lacaire, Cam Frederick, Brandon O’Connor, Jono Crimmin,
Jack Riley, Jeremy Blake-Johnson, Steve Albert, Pat Gallagher, Nate Frederick, and
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