Building Blocks laid for Watertown Baseball
As the 2018 Inaugural Season came to an end at home on August 3rd, there has been some time to reflect on the journey as a whole. One thing that sticks out the most is the support and excitement from Watertown and the surrounding communities.
There was certainly skepticism leading into Opening Day, and that was something the organization accepted and looked to prove why the Rapids were different. With a lot of hard work from many people, our first big impression was made at our Home Opener on June 2nd, as nearly 1,300 fans watched the Rapids shut out Utica 5-0 with fireworks following the win. Fans were treated to exceptional baseball as the Rapids held first place in the Central Division for roughly half the season, going on to finish in second place and make it to the PGCBL Semi-Finals.
Due to the nature of summer collegiate baseball, the schedule was very compact, with the team often playing five to six games per week. Even with a hectic playing schedule, players were more than happy to attend events in the community such as baseball clinics and games, visiting schools, visiting the Children’s Home, and much more. All of our community appearances can be found in the June and July community recaps in the Rapids News section on the website.
Throughout the season, the Rapids planned different promotional nights to bring entertainment for fans and build awareness for organizations. Some of these nights are as followed;
6/2 - Opening Night sponsored by WWNY-TV & The Northern New York Community Foundation with giveaway items and post-game fireworks
6/15 - Fidelis Care Night with an appearance from Fidelisauras
6/26 - Irish Heritage Night with funds raised to benefit the Jefferson County SPCA
6/30 - CSEA Day & YMCA Camp Day
7/8 - Watertown Daily Times Family Day with local Babe Ruth All-star game after Rapids game
7/16 - Samaritan Health Employee Appreciation Night with funds raised to benefit the Walker Center for Cancer Care and the Center for Women and Children
7/20 - Military Appreciation night including military equipment on display from Fort Drum, military jerseys, and post-game fireworks. Funds raised from the jerseys and tickets benefited Fort Drum’s National Infantry Association
7/26 - Business & Baseball Chamber Night where members attended a networking event while watching the game. The game also featured a Christmas in July theme with a Teddy Bear Toss to benefit the Watertown Urban Mission
7/28 - First Responders night with a ladder truck waving an American Flag, a memorium of fallen first responders, funds raised to benefit Believe NNY, and post-game fireworks
7/31 - Fan Appreciation Night with a Victory Promotions water bottle giveaway, NY State Fair ticket giveaways, and a playoff-clinching win
8/3 - First home playoff game for the Rapids
Thanks to these special nights and from community group leaders, the Rapids also hosted groups from youth baseball and softball teams, scouts, service clubs, and many more.
The organization has taken a lot of information in from fan surveys, community feedback, and internal evaluations in order to plan for next season. With some more time to recap, the team will begin planning and implementing changes and upgrades for the 2019 season and are excited for what is to come for baseball in Watertown. A huge thank you to all fans, sponsors, host families, players and their families, coaches, team staff, and to the entire North Country community for welcoming the Rapids to Watertown and for the incredible support during our Inaugural Season!
The Rapids will remain active members of the community during the off-season and are looking forward to interacting with fans and businesses. Please call 315-836-1545 or email General Manager Brandon Noble at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.