Yesterday I reviewed “The Fat Lady Never Sings,” a nonfiction sports memoir written by Steven Reilly. Today we are joined by Steven in this interview for Families.com.
Steven, I’m glad you could be here, and thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Tell me, are you still coaching today?
Yes. I’m currently an assistant at Derby High School. If Derby doesn’t make the State tournament, then I scout for Seymour High School. I also coach a fall baseball team which is a combination of Derby and surrounding town players. Once the clocks change and the World Series ends, baseball in 2007 will finally be over for me until the coaches conventions start again in January.
Have you kept in touch with the other coaches and players mentioned in the book?
Absolutely. As Mike Keenan the former coach of the new York Rangers said in 1994 (when the Rangers won their first Stanley Cup in 54 years) when you win a championship you are bound together forever.
What have the players gone on to do with their lives?
After graduating from Derby High, Ben Bartone and Gino DiMauro commuted together to Sacred Heart University in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Ben pitched three years for Sacred Heart, but Gino’s last game was the 1992 championship game. Both are now police officers for the City of Derby.
Joe Guion and Pete Chrzanowski were both accepted to and graduated from UConn. Neither played baseball for UConn, but Pete continued to play summer ball. Pete is now a business teacher at Farmington High School and coaches high school baseball. Joe is a social worker supervisor employed by the Connecticut Department of Children and Families. Donny Shepard pitched for a community college down south but then returned to Derby after aggravating an old shoulder injury he likely incurred playing football for Derby High. He is now rumored to live somewhere in upstate New York. I am still trying to locate him.
Mike Massie became the top pitcher the following season. He is now married with three children and is still saying “What did I do?” Ritchie Calvert was also a pitcher and outfielder on the following year’s team. He is now married and employed in his family locksmith business. David Anroman became the centerfielder on the following year’s team and after graduating became a plumber in his family’s plumbing business. Kenny Cronk became the rightfielder and after Derby High graduated from Syracuse University. George Hay remained at first base the following season. After graduation, George attended and graduated from UConn.
Joe Lizza continued to be the catcher after the 1992 season and made the Class S All State team each year.
After graduating, he became a catcher/designated hitter for the University of New Haven under coach Frank “Porky” Viera, started all four years and got to play in the Division II College World Series. Recently married, Joe is now a freelance hitting coach and teaches business education at Danbury High School.
After the 1992 season, my brother-in-law Jocko became a baseball and football umpire and continues to umpire games.
At the end of your book, you comment that the futures of these boys would surely be different because they were leaving school as winners, not losers. It’s great to see some of that prophecy fulfilled.
We’ll continue our conversation with Steven Reilly tomorrow. In the meantime, you can visit his site by clicking here.