For the first time since 2005, the rising stars of the New York Penn League (NYPL), Class A Short- Season Minor League Baseball, will be on display in Coney Island as MCU Park will play host to the 2014 NYPL All-Star Game on August 19.
The announcement was made on January 28 at Mercedes Benz of Brooklyn, one of the sponsors of the upcoming summer’s festivities. On hand for the conference were Mets Hall of Famer John Franco; Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams; WFAN’s Craig Carton; Owner of Mercedes Benz of Brooklyn, Doug Wells; and Cyclones personnel.
“There are two types of people in the city. Those who live in Brooklyn and those who wish they did,” joked Adams.
“Although this is an All-Star Game that we are promoting and it’s a great thing the Cyclones are doing, it’s really about what takes place after the last pitch is thrown,” the new Brooklyn borough president explained. “It’s about a team that looks at how to build new fields for young people to be able to play and engage themselves and learn the benefits of being part of team spirit. It’s about the Cyclones and what they did during Hurricane Sandy to help rebuild.”
Franco, the fourth all-time leader in saves in Major League Baseball, also took the stage and discussed the progression of the borough and his roots. “It’s a great opportunity for the borough of Brooklyn,” he said, identifying himself as a lifelong Brooklynite, “being born and raised about three blocks from where we’re standing right now and going to Coney to see what a great job the Cyclones have done for community and bring baseball back here . Every time I go there, it’s a great honor.”
Franco also acknowledged how special it will be for those individuals that will be selected to play in August. “When you’re selected to be in an all-star game, whether it’s high school, little league, minor league, it’s such an honor and accomplishment. And a lot of those guys turn out to be big leaguers.”
Another sponsor of the All-Star Game is TicTocStop, an organization founded by radio personality and host of WFAN’s Boomer & Carton Craig Carton, which is dedicated to raising awareness for individuals who suffer from Tourette’s Syndrome.
“It was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up because we believe we’ve found a cure for the tics,” said Carton, who, along with his two children, suffers from Tourette’s.
“The great thing is to use this event as a platform for us on a bigger scale than I can’t do alone with the radio station to make more people aware of what’s going on and what we’ve discovered,” said Carton, whose family was also born in Brooklyn.
The festivities will begin on Monday, August 18 with a private All-Star Banquet aboard Hornblower Cruises. The following day, the gates at MCU Park will open at 5 p.m. Fans will then be invited to mingle with the all-stars.
Afterwards, the Civil Servant/Celebrity All-Star Challenge, a softball game which will feature local celebrities as well as members of the NYPD, FDNY, DSNY, PAPD and others, will be played.
The two teams will be led by Franco and FOX 5’s “Good Day New York” co-host, Brooklyn bred Rosanna Scotto.
“I should warn you I’m very competitive. Brooklyn girls don’t get intimidated easily,” responded Scotto in a text message read by Cyclones personnel.
“Whether it’s the boat tour, the softball game, the fan fest or the All-Star Game itself, everyone should want to be a part of our All-Star Summer at MCU Park,” said General Manager of the Cyclones, Kevin Mahoney in a statement.
For more information on tickets to the event, call 718-37-BKLYN.