Pick just about any town, city, village, or baseball field in Rhode Island and drive about 30 minutes in any direction. What do you find? Another state!!! The Rhode Island Baseball Experience is possible for me (partly) because Rhode Island is a small state to travel top to bottom and side to side to watch and enjoy baseball games of all levels in all of the amazing towns, cities, villages, and baseball fields here. And Saturday night, South County baseball fans will be treated to an amazing set of games that are literally positioned just 2.2 miles apart.
Due to the rainy weather and field conditions, the Newport Pell Bridge series featuring the New England Collegiate Baseball League’s Newport Gulls vs the Ocean State Waves game for Friday July 9th was postponed. The game will now be played as a doubleheader tonight at Wakefield’s Old Mountain Field, located on Kingstown Rd. Game time is 4pm for the opening, with the second game starting shortly after the first game ends. If you haven’t heard, I will tell you that the Gulls and Waves have some of the top collegiate baseball talent in the country, including a number of Rhode Island born players on each roster. The Gulls vs The Waves are always an exciting matchup and always draw a huge, enthusiastic crowd with tons of excitement on and off the field.
Less than two miles from Old Mountain Field is Narragansett’s Sprague Park. You can take Kingstown Road, follow the rotary around to the 2nd off ramp to stay on Kingstown Road, then left into the Sprague Little League Field parking lot with the playground area. Scheduled to play at 6:30pm is the next round of playoffs for Rhode Island District 3 12Us, featuring Narragansett Little League vs Westerly National Little League. Also featuring my home run slugging, All Star Pitcher, and nephew Finley Hohl. Narragansett and Westerly have played well in the District 3 Tournament but each have one loss. One more win, they move on; one more loss, and their season is over. Honestly, I have said it before, there is NOTHING like District All Star games for a baseball fan. This should be an incredible game!!!
Or, if you prefer, you can take a right out of Old Mountain Field, then another right on Broad Rock Rd, then another right into the Broad Rock Athletic Complex. There you will see a Little League size field, keep driving around to the parking lot and there you will see the “big” field. Scheduled to play at 5:30 is the Rhode Island District 3 Juniors Tournament game, featuring South Kingstown Little League vs Coventry Little League. The Juniors division features players at the Middle School or maybe Freshman in High School or 12 – 14 year age level. Some of these players played on the “big” field this season for the first time, others are more seasoned. And I got a text from my brother in law that my other All Star nephew, Jackson Hohl, plays for the South Kingstown Juniors. So, my family will be very active fans tonight in South County. South Kingstown and Coventry Little Leagues both have tremendous baseball programs and this one should be another incredible game for baseball fans.
For parents, family members, and fans of players playing in these games – of course you will watch your All Star and cheer as loud as you can at your game. However, if it should strike you, you can start at Sprague Little League field to watch the 12U All Stars, who are making a name for themselves already and represent the future of Rhode Island baseball. Then, head over to Broad Rock Fields to watch the Juniors, who have made the transition to the “big” field and are getting better every game. This group represents the edge of the Rhode Island baseball present here in the state at the high school level. Or, you can hop over to Old Mountain Field to watch the Gulls vs the Waves and see what the present state of big time college baseball looks like. Three amazing levels of baseball tonight separated by just 2 miles.
Good luck to all the players, coaches, families, and organizations playing tonight at Broad Rock, Old Mountain Field, and Sprague Park. Weather permitting, it should be a spectacular night to be a baseball fan in South County!!! And special best of luck to my nephews Finley Hohl of Narragansett Little League and Jackson Hohl of South Kingstown Juniors.
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The RIBBE is The Rhode Island Baseball Experience. It is promoting the game of baseball here in the great state of Rhode Island for the entire baseball world to see. The RIBBE is positive stories, photos, videos, and responsible social media posts. The RIBBE is an information resource for families looking for an AAU team or a summer camp or a great place to buy a first baseman’s mitt. The RIBBE is a network of coaches, tournament directors, parents, leagues, and baseball junkies whose passion of the game of baseball is unquestioned. I believe that providing expert analysis, information and directions to ballfields, and coaching advice from some of the top RI baseball minds will help promote the game of baseball here in RI to a whole new level.