Boosters Offering Raffle Tickets for a Rumble Pony Skybox!

The Binghamton Baseball Booster Club is holding a raffle for a skybox suite at the April 25th Rumble Ponies game against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats. If your ticket is selected, you can entertain yourself and eleven of your friends while watching the Rumble Ponies in action!

To get your raffle ticket now, just send us the following information and mail it to: Binghamton Baseball Boosters, Box 598, Binghamton, NY 13902We’ll even pay for the postage, so just send $4.50 for each ticket you want to purchase to us! We’ll send you an electronic receipt and ticket number!


E-Mail: __________________________________________

Address: _________________________________________

City: ____________________________________________

Phone: __________________________________________

a1 blank raffle ticket Scan0633

Here’s a picture of the raffle ticket with all the details you need to know. 

If you have any questions, you can call 607-205-7528. Good Luck!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Tim Heiman Discusses the Challenges of Broadcasting Sporting Events with the Binghamton Baseball Boosters

Tim Heiman kicked off the November meeting of the Binghamton Baseball Boosters by explaining what goes into a sports broadcast. Besides being the announcer for the Binghamton Rumble Ponies, Tim also broadcasts various Division 1 sports at Binghamton University for ESPN3, the streaming channel for ESPN.

Heiman IMG_1967 (1)

Heiman emphasized the importance of preparation as part of his broadcasting duties, no mater the sport, during his session with the Binghamton Baseball Boosters in November.

Many in the audience were shocked when Tim mentioned that the easiest part of a broadcast is the game itself. “The audience only hears you during the broadcast, but so much work goes into preparing the broadcast,” emphasized Heiman.

Tim was especially busy right after the Rumble Ponies season ended. Usually he has a couple of months to unwind before he gets ready to broadcast Women’s basketball games for BU. Late this summer, however, Tim was asked to do Binghamton soccer and lacrosse for ESPN3. Tim readily agreed, despite not knowing much about either sport. “You never want to turn down an opportunity, you never know where it might lead,” explained Tim. So he immediately began learning all he could about both sports. He put the same painstaking work into these sports that he puts into his baseball and basketball seasons.

preparation IMG_1963

Heiman’s “cheat sheet” for announcing Women’s Basketball games for Binghamton. 

Much of Tim’s research winds up becoming detailed “cheat sheets” that he can use for quick reference during a game. The material can be used to fill in the minutes for time outs and other stoppage of play, as well as add meaningful insights for viewers.  Heiman’s “cheat sheets” are just one example of the dedication he brings to his craft, whether it’s competition on  a field or a court!


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Oliver Blaise Discusses “The Business of Minor League Baseball” at the October Membership Meeting

On Tuesday evening, October 17th, while the Yankees were staging a dramatic comeback against the Houston Astros in Game 4 of the ALCS, Binghamton attorney Oliver Blaise was sharing his views on the business of minor league baseball with the Binghamton Baseball Boosters. Blaise’s talk was extremely well received by those in attendance, as he held the interest of attendees for approximately 45 minutes.

Oliver Blaise - Speaker Oct 2017 Booster Club meeting - 1

Blaise addesses the booster club at The Relief Pitcher during the November meeting of the Binghamton Baseball Booster Club.

Blaise was the lead attorney for Main Street Baseball, the corporation that tried to buy and relocate the Binghamton AA franchise during 2015. Main Street thought it had a binding agreement to buy the team in 2015, but the Binghamton owners felt a final agreement had never been reached. Main Street Baseball clearly stated its desire to relocate the franchise to Wilmington, Delaware, but the Binghamton owners preferred to sell the team to an owner who would keep the team in Binghamton. Hence Main Street Baseball hired Oliver’s firm to represent their interests.

Blaise explained to the boosters that “If I didn’t take the assignment on behalf of my law firm, someone else would have done it, so being the diehard baseball fan that I am, I thought it could be an interesting experience.” Eventually Main Street Baseball dropped its lawsuit, and in an interesting set of circumstances, John Hughes stepped forward to buy the team. As we now know, Hughes has kept the team in Binghamton and he has shown his commitment to the area by investing $1.2M of his money into refurbishing NYSEG Stadium.

Though Blaise could not talk about the specifics of the “Main Street Baseball vs. Binghamton Franchise” suit, he shared what he learned about the workings of minor league baseball in general.  “The trend in the minor leagues now is to turn the various stadiums into entertainment vehicles beyond just the baseball being played. Binghamton’s owner, John Hughes, has followed in this tradition by enhancing the Kid’s Zone and including the Party Deck, and the other things he has done.” Blaise is very bullish about the future of baseball in Binghamton, largely due to the changes that Hughes has made.

Blaise mentioned that although he got some comments about why he was representing the group that wanted to take baseball out of Binghamton, all the principles in the debate were friendly with him. “As it turns out, I live in the same development as Mike Urda and his son Bobby, and all through the lawsuit when we would see each other we would stop and share friendly conversation,” Blaise pointed out.

Blaise admitted that Binghamton came very close to losing its Double-A franchise, the key item was that the Eastern League, which had to approve the sale and relocation, turned down Main Street’s request to relocate the franchise. Without the ability to relocate the franchise, Main Street turned around and sold the team to John Hughes.

Blaise was delighted that the Yankees staged a comeback and went on to beat the Astros during Game 4.  Being the diehard Yankee fan that he is, Blaise might have wished he was also scheduled to speak during Game 7 of the ALCS.




Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Recap of the September Membership Meeting of the Binghamton Baseball Boosters

Note: This article appeared in the October newsletter of the Binghamton Baseball Booster Club.  

Before the second game of the Eastern League Eastern Division Playoffs, on September 6th, Jeremy Donovan, the evening sports anchor for FOX 40 (WICZ TV), was the guest speaker at the September meeting of the Binghamton Baseball Boosters.


Jeremy Donovan addresses the Boosters from the Party Deck at NYSEG Stadium before the Rumble Ponies took on the Trenton Thunder in the playoffs on September 6th.  

Jeremy is a 2006 graduate of Seton Catholic Central and SUNY Oswego. At Oswego he was the Sports Director for the student-run television station, WTOP, and the play-by-play voice of the Oswego State Lakers hockey team.  He also spent his summers working as part of the Buzz Brigade for the Binghamton Mets.

During Rumble Pony games Jeremy is usually perched behind home plate, shooting video for his evening broadcast. One of the highlights for the season for Jeremy was covering Matt Harvey’s pitching performance at NYSEG Stadium on August 21st. With a broad smile on his face, Donovan related his experience that night. “Getting to interview Harvey after the game was pretty neat. It served as a great reminder of how much fun my job can be.”

Jeremy hoped to play in the major leagues, only to realize that even as a tall, lanky, lefty he couldn’t throw quite hard enough.  Once he realized he would never be a professional athlete, he thought covering sports would be the “next best thing.” He greatly enjoys working in his hometown and, on a personal note, he yearns for the year when the New York Mets are free from major injuries. When asked what he would do if he were in charge of the Mets, Jeremy said “I would work closely with the medical staff to try to eliminate the decimating injuries that have plagued the team.”

Jeremy’s childhood is full of fond memories of cheering on Don Biggs and the Ferraro brothers at Binghamton Rangers games, and watching many future New York Mets play at Municipal/NYSEG Stadium.  His parents, Jennifer and Mike, can often be seen watching the Rumble Ponies in action in their seats behind the first-base dugout.


Hours after Donovan met with the Boosters, Bingamton fans cheered the excellent pitching of Corey Oswalt. who pitched the Ponies to a first game win over the Thunder.  


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ponies Defeat Thunder, 4-1, Behind Oswalt and the Pen

Corey Oswalt threw seven superb innings against the Trenton Thunder, allowing one run on five hits, and Tim Peterson and Tylor Bashlor followed with a scoreless inning apiece as Binghamton took the first game of the Eastern League Divisional Playoffs. Peter Alonso doubled in two runs in the first inning and Matt Oberste drove in two runs with another double in the third inning to provide the scoring for the Rumble Ponies.

a1 alonzo double IMG_2459

Alonso waves to the bench after his first-inning double. 

Clint Frazier, on a rehabilitation assignment from the Yankees, started in left field for Trenton, but did not provide any sparks for the Thunder. Oswalt struck him out in all three of his at-bats; two times Oswalt got Frazier to swing and miss at fastballs and the other time Frazier got caught looking at a slider.

a1 bernhardt happy IMG_2512

John Bernhardt makes his opinion of Corey Oswalt known for the fans at NYSEG Stadium.

The game got exciting in the ninth inning when the first two batters reached base for Trenton, but Tylor Bashlor then struck out the side. Bashlor has not been scored upon since he was promoted to the Ponies from St. Lucie. His playoff appearance was his 13th as a Rumble Pony.

a1 bashlor celebrates IMG_2524

Bashlor celebrates after striking out Zach Zechner to end the game. 

a1 alonso to thompson IMG_1227

Alonso first wore #15 when he played his first few games for the Ponies.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Rickey Knapp Warms the Hearts of the Binghamton Baseball Boosters

Right-handed starter Rickey Knapp had no idea that Dominic Smith had ever been a guest speaker at a meeting of the Binghamton Baseball Boosters, but during his half-hour session with the boosters on Saturday, August 19th, Knapp had the boosters reminiscing about Dominic Smith. Just as Smith had done in April 2016 when he met with the boosters, Knapp endeared himself to his audience by having a hug for all the women and a handshake for all the men who attended the meeting.


Knapp had a warm greeting for all of the Binghamton Baseball Boosters during the general meeting of the Boosters on April 19th.

After Rickey gave out his hugs and handshakes, he settled right into the meeting, taking a seat on the party deck at NYSEG Stadium to interact with Rumble Pony fans. Knapp hails from Port Charlotte, Florida, and has been hanging around a pitching mound for as long as he can remember. He  accompanied his dad to the ballpark on a regular basis when he was as young as five, as his dad worked as a pitching coordinator. Becoming a pitcher was almost as natural for Knapp as learning to walk.

Knapp was drafted in the 8th round in the 2013 amateur draft out of Florida Gulf University. Besides starring on the diamond for Florida Gulf, Knapp said he and his baseball teammates were the unofficial cheerleaders for the basketball team, which made it into the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Playoffs in 2013.


The 85 degree weather in Binghamton was a cool respite for Knapp, who came to Binghamton from Las Vegas. 

This summer marks the second tour of duty for Knapp in Binghamton; he went 4-1 for the Binghamton Mets last year, posting an E.R.A. of 3.35. After an impressive spring training this year he became a member of the starting rotation for the Las Vegas 51s, the Mets Triple-A team in the Pacific Coast League. At Vegas, Knapp posted a 6-13 record, with a 5.97 E.R.A. At first glance that record is far from impressive, but when you factor in that as of this writing Vegas sports a 54-76 record and that the Pacific Coast League is known as a notorious hitter’s league, you realize Knapp has pitched better than his record indicates. For comparison, Chase Braford, who is now sporting a 2.95 E.R.A. for the Mets, had an E.R.A. of 4.04 for Vegas before he was promoted to the majors.

Knapp made his Binghamton debut on Friday, 8/18, throwing a four hitter and pitching a complete game in the Mets 4-1 win over Portland. Five days later he gave up one run in 8 innings in a non-decision against New Hampshire. Regarding his arrival in Binghamton, Knapp said the Mets are not looking at it as a demotion. “They told me they wanted me to get some experience pitching in some games that matter. At Vegas, the season is going to end without any playoff games. Coming here to Binghamton allows me to get some experience pitching in games that matter.”

Knapp attacks hitters with a low-90s fastball and a changeup that induces lots of ground balls; he will also mix in some breaking pitches to keep the hitters honest. Knapp explained that one of the most important things to having success on the mound is to bring a large dose of confidence with you. “You have to believe in yourself and just execute your pitches, no matter where you are pitching.” Knapp went to explain that rather than thinking about making adjustments at the different levels he gets to, you have to believe that what got to that level will prove to be the key factor for you to have success at that level.

aaa rickey knapp 1 IMG_1019

Knapp releases his fastball while pitching for Binghamton in 2016.

Towards the end of the meeting Boosters President Kevin Healy presented him with a gift card from Wegman’s, which is always a favorite place for the players to visit. Knapp broke into a huge smile. “Now I can negotiate with the guys a bit. I can offer to buy groceries if they can let me stay with them. I just need an air mattress.”

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Oswalt Brightens a Gloomy Day

On a wet and gray afternoon on Monday, July 17th, Corey Oswalt was the guest speaker at the monthly meeting of the Binghamton Baseball Boosters. He chatted with the members for approximately twenty minutes as the group gathered under the right field party deck at NYSEG Stadium, which shielded them from the rain that eventually cancelled the doubleheader scheduled that evening.


Oswalt chats with the Binghamton Baseball Boosters during the July general membership meeting. 

Oswalt was drafted in the seventh round of the 2012 amateur draft out of Madison High School in San Diego, where he starred as a shortstop. During his senior year he pitched about 20 innings so that he could show his potential as a pitcher and increase his prospects of being a high draft pick. Though he had only that limited experience as a pitcher, the Mets saw promise in his arm strength. After drafting him, the Mets converted Oswalt to a full-time pitcher and assigned him to the Kingsport Mets, a short-season rookie team in the Appalachian League. Oswalt got off to a rocky professional start, compiling an 8.15 E.R.A. while pitching 35 innings. Since that rocky start, however, Oswalt’s rise through the minors has been steadfast and he has found success at such stops at Brooklyn, Savannah, and St. Lucie. Last fall Oswalt showed he was ready for Double-A baseball by having an impressive Arizona Fall League debut, where he went 4-1 with a 3.31 E.R.A.


Oswalt’s goal is to pitch in the Major Leagues; his performance this year for the Rumble Ponies has put him on the radar screen of the Mets’ front office. 

Oswalt is enjoying a breakout year with the Rumble Ponies, going 7-3 with a superlative 2.31 E.R.A. He has teamed with PJ Conlon and Chris Flexen to form a formidable starting rotation for the Ponies.  Oswalt and Conlon were both selected to the pitching staff of the Eastern Division for the Eastern League All Star game and Oswalt threw a shutout inning as the starter.

Regarding his time as a shortstop before he became a professional, Oswalt was objective. “I miss playing shortstop today, I liked being part of the action for every game, every play. But my baseball advisor thought I could enhance my draft position by also pitching a little during my senior year, as my arm strength has always been my strongest asset as a baseball player.” Oswalt still likes to swing the bat and his two home runs this year show he still has some talent in the batter’s box.

“When I come up to hit I know the pitcher is probably going to throw me fastballs early in the count,” Oswalt explained to the boosters when he was asked about his success at the plate. “So I look for the fastball and am ready to put a good sing on it,” he concluded. Oswalt also takes a cerebral approach to the game when he is on the pitcher’s mound. “A lot of times I’ll decide on what to throw by reading the batter’s swing, he stated. “If I have a batter reaching for the outside breaking ball, I know I can follow up with an inside fastball.”

One of the biggest differences Oswalt has noticed from St. Lucie is that the hitters miss fewer mistakes in the Eastern League. Oswalt’s assessment of the batters in the Eastern League echoes the earlier comments of such former Binghamton players as David Roseboom, Logan Verrett, and Mike Fulmer, who warned of more sophisticated hitters at Double-A when they spoke with the boosters in prior seasons. Oswalt cautioned, “If you miss up in the zone in this league, the hitters will make you pay for it, whereas in Single-A they might only foul off a mistake.” Regarding the umpires in the league, Oswalt noted the hubris of umpires, as well as drawing laughs from his audience when he stated “All the umpires here think they should be in the big leagues!” Oswalt explained that the strike zone is narrower here, as pitches that are off the plate are not called strikes as much as they are in the lower levels of minor league ball.

a1 corey oswalt IMG_7965

Oswalt delivers the ball from a 3/4 arm slot during a recent game at NYSEG Stadium. 

When Oswalt has a few hours of spare time, he likes to check out the eating places of Binghamton and he is especially partial to visiting Wegman’s. “I love Wegman’s,” he exhorted when he asked about what he likes about Binghamton. Though an avid golfer, Oswalt has not taken advantage of any of the numerous golf courses in the area, as he prefers not to play during the season, shielding himself from an injury risk and preserving his energy.

On the mound Oswalt pitches off his fastball and relies on keeping the ball low in the zone; he is known more for his command than his strikeout artistry. In 81 innings this year, he has struck out 69 and only walked 26. His three best pitchers are his fastball, curve, and slider. Oswalt is looking forward to finishing the year in strong fashion and seeing the Rumble Ponies make the playoffs in their first year of existence.

At the conclusion of the meeting, the boosters gave Oswalt a round of applause and Gary Kaiser bid farewell to Oswalt by calling out, “See you in Citi Field.” If Oswalt continues to pitch as well as he has in the first half of the season, he will no doubt follow in the footsteps of such former guest speakers for the boosters as Michael Fulmer, Brandon Nimmo, Paul Sewald, and Logan Verrett.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment