After coming up just short of pulling off an upset of the eventual WRWBL champions, the Somers Cyclones entered the offseason hopeful that they will bring everyone back for another run. Fast forward to May and you are looking at almost the identical squad that almost took down the league’s best squad.
Manager Jon Pollock is very optimistic about his team’s chances this year, and who could blame him? The Clones bring back one of the league’s all-time great hitters in Charlie Galasso. An absolute machine at the plate, Galasso finished the 2022 campaign with a league leading 32 hits, an outstanding .416 average, all while hitting safely in 19 of 21 games played (including a 16-game hit streak to end the season). He will most definitely be counted on to lead the charge offensively, although he has plenty of help this season. All-Star standout’s Joe Silvestri, Matt Maher, and Donny Castaldo will look to provide their veteran leadership, while young collegiate talents such as Thomas Parisi, Liam Kaseta, and Aidan Hicks will look to provide an added spark in a potent Clones lineup. Longtime Cyclone, Denis Alimonti, makes his return to the Clones after an offseason in which he dealt with both labrum surgery and open heart surgery. The WRWBL couldn’t be more excited to have him back on the diamond!
Defensively, the Clones probably boast the best collection of fielders in the league. Along with recent Gold Glove winners, Aidan Hicks and Matt Hegarty, the Clones have a slew of former GG winners such as Parisi, Maher, Silvestri, Castaldo, and Jon Pollock.
The Clones uncharacteristically struggled last season with their pitching, as many of their longtime veteran arms battled to keep runs off the board. The big three of James Puma, Mike Haag, and Jon Pollock will once again be called upon to lead this pitching staff. However, Pollock is also looking forward to the contributions of his young collegiate arms, Anthony Arrichiello and Bruno Spadafora, to help reinvigorate this once elite pitching staff. The backend of the Clones bullpen is as good as it gets. Last year’s saves leader, Kevin Watson, will be tasked with setting up the back end innings of games for the return of the WRWBL’s greatest closer, David Balme. A WRWBL All-Decade selection, Balme brings back his years of closer experience to help solidify the Cyclones bullpen.
Once again, we find ourselves looking at a Cyclones team that is deep, talented, and battle tested. They have yet to get over the hump and win their first WRWBL title. Will this year finally be the year they put it all together?