<![CDATA[NBC Connecticut - Sports - Hartford Yard Goats]]>Copyright 2018http://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/sportsen-usSun, 18 Feb 2018 13:11:20 -0500Sun, 18 Feb 2018 13:11:20 -0500NBC Local Integrated Media<![CDATA[Yard Goats Individual Game Tickets On Sale Now]]>Fri, 09 Feb 2018 12:32:28 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Park-Hartford.jpg

Hartford Yard Goats fans can now buy individual game tickets for all home games, including opening night in Hartford. Individual tickets for home games went on sale Friday, Feb. 9.

Fans have the opportunity to buy tickets in person at the box office at Dunkin’ Donuts Park in Hartford, over the phone beginning or online.

Opening Night is April 5. The Yard Goats will host the New Hampshire Fisher Cats at 7:05 p.m. The team is giving away several promotional items this season, see the full list.

Tickets will also be available for two new hospitality areas at Dunkin’ Donuts Park: Budweiser Sky Bar Premium Seating and the Right Field Party Porch for groups of 30 guests.

“With so much excitement and enthusiasm spilling over from our inaugural season, we are putting tickets on sale earlier to accommodate the interest,” Yard Goats general manager Mike Abramson said in a statement.

You can buy Yard Goats season tickets, 18-game plans, group and hospitality tickets and luxury suites for the 2018 season by calling 860-246-GOAT (4628), by visiting www.yardgoatsbaseball.com or going in person to the box office at Dunkin’ Donuts Park.

The baseball park is located at 1214 Main St., Hartford. 

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Release Giveaway Schedule]]>Thu, 08 Feb 2018 08:14:22 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Hartford+Yard+Goats+Goat+Yoga.jpg

Baseball returns in April and the Hartford Yard Goats have released the schedule of promotional items the team will give away this season. 

“Whalers Alumni Weekend” will take place from July 27 through July 29, when the Yard Goats host the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, and the Yard Goats will be wearing to special hockey style uniforms to pay tribute to the former NHL franchise. 

Many former Whalers will take part in the weekend festivities, including a luncheon, on-field pregame ceremony, hockey puck giveaway and autograph session. 

The outfield video will also show many historic Whalers moments and highlights. 

Yard Goats fans will enjoy fireworks after most Friday and Saturday night games. The first show will take place on Opening Night after the first Yard Goats game on Thursday, April 5. 


  • Thursday, April 5: Magnet Schedule 
  • Friday, April 6: Magnet Schedule 
  • Saturday, April 7: Magnet Schedule 
  • Sunday, April 8: Magnet Schedule 
  • Monday, April 9: Umbrella 
  • Wednesday, April 11: Baseball Cap 
  • Monday, April 23: Rally Towel 
  • Wednesday, April 25: Baseball Cap 
  • Thursday, May 3: Kids Replica Jersey 
  • Monday, May 7: Fancy Pants Goat Bobblehead 
  • Monday, May 14: Baseball Cap 
  • Thursday, May 17: Baseball Cap 
  • Wednesday, May 30: Chompers Piggy Bank 
  • Wednesday, June 13: Goat Yoga Bobblehead
  • Sunday, June 17: Baseball Cap 
  • Monday, June 25: Puzzle 
  • Thursday, June 28: Whirly Birds Baseball Cap – This is “What If Night,” a fun promotion to see what it would be like if the team had a different name and the Yard Goats will play as the Hartford Whirly Birds, which was one of the finalists in the name-the-team-contest. Note: NBC Connecticut is the sponsor of this event. 
  • Monday, July 16: Dunkin’ Donuts Park Replica 
  • Sunday, July 29: Hockey Puck 
  • Sunday, Aug. 5: Golden Snitch Baseball 
  • Monday, Aug. 27: Team Card Set 
  • Wednesday, Aug. 29: Kids Lunch Box 

The Yard Goats will also play as Los Chivos de Hartford on June 2, July 17, and Aug. 24. The name, which translates from Spanish as the Goats of Hartford, is part of Minor League Baseball’s Es Divertido Ser Un Fan campaign.

 On Aug. 12, the Yard Goats will play as the Hartford Steamed Cheeseburgers and debut their specially designed uniform jerseys and hats.

The Cowboy Monkey Rodeo will visit to Hartford on Thursday, June 14 and fans will be able to watch monkeys riding on dogs after the game.

David "The Bullet" Smith will be a Human Cannonball on Thursday, July 26.

 On Thursday, Aug. 23, giant inflatable characters will be at Dunkin’ Donuts Park as ZOOperstars visit Hartford.

Theme Nights:

  • April 5: Opening Night Celebration
  • April 8: Home Run for Autism Day
  • April 22: Healthy Kids Baseball Summit
  • May 5: Faith & Family Night, Boy Scout Night
  • May 17: Pink in the Park
  • May 18: Military Appreciation Night
  • May 19: Prevention and Health Promotion, Super Hero Night
  • June 1: Star Wars Night
  • June 2: Video Game Night
  • June 3: Dairy Day
  • June 14: Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month
  • June 15: Girl Scout Night
  • June 16: Organized Labor Night
  • June 17: Father’s Day Celebration
  • June 25: Power of Ability Night
  • June 26: You Can Play Night
  • June 28: What If Night
  • July 4: Fourth of July Celebration
  • July 6: Irish Night
  • July 7: Christmas in July
  • July 8: Chew Chew’s Birthday Party
  • July 26: Princess and Pirates Night
  • July 27 through 29: Whalers Alumni Weekend
  • Aug. 3: Halloween Night
  • Aug. 4: Cystic Fibrosis Night, Boy Scout Night
  • Aug. 5: Harry Potter Night
  • Aug. 11t: Home Run for Heroes
  • Aug. 12: Steamed Cheeseburger Night
  • Aug. 22: Eat Well Night
  • Aug. 23: Strike Out Cancer Night
  • Aug. 24: Roberto Clemente Night
  • Aug. 25 and Aug. 26: Faith & Family Day
  • Aug. 28: Power of Ability Night
  • Aug. 29: Back to School Night
  • Aug. 30: Fan Appreciation Night

The Yard Goats will take a serious role with Strike Out Cancer Night, Pink in the Park, You Can Play Night, and Military Appreciation Night. 

The Yard Goats will also honor Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente in a celebration on Aug. 24.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats to Hold Job Fair]]>Mon, 05 Feb 2018 13:03:11 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Park-Hartford.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats Baseball Club is looking to fill positions and will hold a job fair on Feb. 17.

The Yard Goats said they are looking for applicants to fill a wide range of game-day positions and they want upbeat, fan-friendly people.

The job fair will be at Dunkin’ Donuts Park, 1214 Main St. in Hartford, on Saturday, Feb. 17, from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m.

Personnel from both the Yard Goats and the food and beverage provider, Professional Sports Catering, will speak with and receive applications from all job-seekers.

In all, the two organizations will staff an average of 300 positions each year, including ushers, ticket takers, box office personnel, merchandising, housekeeping, grounds crew, concessions, kitchen personnel and catering.

The Hartford Yard Goats will open the 2018 season on Thursday, April 5 with a 7:05 p.m. game at Dunkin’ Donuts Park against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats to Hold National Anthem Auditions for Fans]]>Thu, 01 Feb 2018 11:07:13 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/dunkin%27-donuts-park1.jpg

If you can sing, you have a chance to sing the National Anthem before Hartford Yard Goats fans at Dunkin’ Donuts Park in Hartford.

The Hartford Yard Goats minor league baseball club will be holding National Anthem auditions at Dunkin’ Donuts Park, at 1214 Main St., on Saturday, Feb. 24. The auditions begin at 9 a.m.

Singers of all ages are welcome to audition for the opportunity to sing the National Anthem, but the Yard Goats warn there are a limited number of tryout slots available and singers must register in advance by emailing Amanda Goldsmith at agoldsmith@yardgoatsbaseball.com.

The Hartford Yard Goats 2018 season opens on Thursday, April 5 with a 7:05 p.m. game against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Hartford Yard Goats to Remain Affiliate of the Colorado Rockies Through 2020]]>Tue, 12 Dec 2017 09:31:53 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Yard_Goats_Jingle_1200x675_615127107875.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats and the Colorado Rockies extended the teams' Player Development Contract for another two years.  The agreement lockes in the Yard Goats as the Double-A affiliate of the Rockies through the 2020 season.

The announcement was made Tuesday at Major League Baseball's winter meetings in Orlando and first reported by NBC Connecticut.

“We are delighted to extend our affiliation with the Colorado Rockies,” Yard Goats President Tim Restall said in a press release. “The Yard Goats and Rockies share the same sentiment in being involved in the local community, which is one of the reasons this relationship works so well. Our players have been wonderful ambassadors in Greater Hartford and have engaged our fans both inside and outside of Dunkin’ Donuts Park. The Rockies strong farm system will allow our fans to continue to see some of baseball’s biggest prospects play in Hartford.”

The Yard Goats just finished their first season at their new home, Dunkin' Donuts Park in downtown Hartford where the team was consistently one of the highest-attended in the Eastern League.  The Hartford Yard Goats began their affiliate with the Rockies in 2015.

“I speak for the entire Colorado Rockies organization in expressing our excitement in announcing our PDC extension with the Hartford Yard Goats,” Rockies Senior Director of Player Development Zach Wilson said. “We are grateful to the Yard Goats’ ownership and front office as well as to the great City of Hartford and its baseball fans, all of which have embraced our franchise, players, and staff. We are privileged to be a part of this community and to play at Dunkin’ Donuts Park, which has cemented itself as a landmark of the city.”

Through the first three season of their affiliation together, the Yard Goats have sent 16 players to Coors Field, including infielder Ryan McMahon last season.

The Yard Goats will open their 2018 season at Dunkin' Donuts Park on Thurs., April 5 against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.

NBC Connecticut is proud to be the official media partner of the Hartford Yard Goats baseball team.

<![CDATA[YUM: All Types of Food at Dunkin' Donuts Stadium]]>Fri, 14 Apr 2017 11:58:57 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Photo-Apr-13-6-19-44-PM.jpg

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[10 Facts About the Hartford Yard Goats, Dunkin' Donuts Park]]>Fri, 14 Apr 2017 21:44:24 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/yard+goats+dunkin+donut+opener.jpg

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Views From Around Dunkin' Donuts Park for Yard Goats Games]]>Tue, 02 May 2017 17:35:39 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/Back+of+Section+111.jpg

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[What You Need to Know if You're Going to Dunkin' Donuts Park]]>Fri, 14 Apr 2017 12:10:44 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Park-Hartford.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats are kicking off their inaugural season at Dunkin' Donuts Park in downtown Hartford.  

If you are heading to a game at Dunkin' Donuts Park, we wanted to provide you with all the information you need to know before going to a game.

If you are plugging the ballpark into your GPS, the physical address is 1214 Main Street, Hartford.

The Yard Goats have a partnership with LAZ Parking to offer $5 parking at lots at 300 Market Street, 1000 Main Street, 55 Chapel Street South and 58 Chapel Street North.

CTfastrak is one option for getting to a game.  The bus service runs until around midnight and has stops two to three blocks from the ballpark.  

Gates typically will open one hour prior to game time so for a 7:05 p.m. game, gates will usually open at 6:05 p.m.  

If you have tickets to the YG Stadium Club by Frontier, you will be able to gain access to the park an hour and a half before regular season games.

You can take a look at the stadium's seating chart here.

No alcoholic beverages can be brought into the park.  All alcohol sales will end at the end of the seventh inning.  In addition, no cans, bottles, plastic containers, boxes, coolers, or food packages will be allowed into the stadium, and all bags are subject to search.

You can bring in consumer-grade cameras and video cameras.  Umbrellas are also permitted.

There are changing stations for babies in every restroom at the park.

The team's Retro Brand Team Store at the ballpark is now open for merchandise purchases.  It's located at the corner of Main and Trumbull.  The store is open throughout games.  The regular hours for the store are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sundays.

For tickets to games at Dunkin' Donuts Park, you can visit the team's website here.  

The stadium's box office is open on non-game days from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.  On game days, the box office is open from 9 a.m. until the end of the game on Mondays through Fridays.  On weekend game days, the box office is open 10 a.m. until the end of the game.  The box office is located at the corner of Main and Trumbull Streets.

ADA seating is available at the park.  The team recommends you call (860) 246-4628 ahead of time to make sure your seats meet your needs.

You can download the team's schedule here.  

For all news about the Hartford Yard Goats and Dunkin' Donuts Park, visit our NBC Connecticut Yard Goats page.



From the West: Take 84 East to Exit 50 (Main Street). Take Exit 50 toward Main St. Use the left lane to merge onto Chapel St S. Turn left onto Trumbull St. Use the middle lane to turn left onto Main St.

From the East: Take 84 West to Exit 50 (US-44 W/Morgan Street). Follow I-91 S/Main St. Take a slight right onto Main St.

From the North: Take 91 South to Exit 32A - 32B (Trumbull St). Continue straight onto Trumbull St.

From the South: Take 91 North to Exit 32A - 32B (Market St). Use the left lane to take Exit 32A-32B for Trumbull St. Continue straight onto Trumbull St.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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<![CDATA[Hartford Issues RFP for Downtown North Properties]]>Mon, 20 Nov 2017 13:41:38 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/HARTFORD-DOWNTOWN-NORTH-RFP.jpg

Hartford has issued a Request for Proposals for the Downtown North area surrounding Dunkin’ Donuts Park.

There are 32 city-owned properties, totaling 13 acres, that the city is looking to develop. The city is specifically looking for mixed-use space, with residential space as well as retail and office spaces.

The city estimates that nearly 400,000 attended Hartford Yard Goats games at the 6,000-seat ballpark, which makes the surrounding area ripe for development.

“We believe there’s significant potential for development in the area, and we hope bidders will recognize the importance of pedestrian-friendly development that connects Downtown North with the Clay Arsenal and Upper Albany neighborhoods as well as Main Street. We’re going to thoroughly vet any proposals to make sure bidders have the interest, capacity, and experience to follow through on their proposals,” Mayor Luke Bronin wrote in a statement.

The development rights for the area were originally awarded to Centerplan, the same company that was meant to develop Dunkin’ Donuts Park. Bronin’s administration called off that contract after ongoing construction and cost issues that delayed the completion of the park.

In October the city of Hartford terminated Centerplan’s contract to develop the surrounding parcels due to their "failure to deliver the ballpark and lack of honesty and transparency."

Centerplan Construction filed a lawsuit against the city last year after it was terminated from the stadium project. The city has since filed a counter-claim. The case is ongoing. 

Proposals must include some kind of structure parking to replace the lots that are currently being used as parking spaces on each parcel.

The city of Hartford is working with the state to make improvements to traffic in the area, specifically to redesign the intersection of Albany Avenue and Main Street.

The deadline to submit a proposal is Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018 at 2 p.m. Before that, there will be a non-mandatory pre-bid conference at the Dunkin’ Donuts Park Community Center at 1214 Main Street on Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017 at 10 a.m.

Read the full RFP below:

Photo Credit: City of Hartford]]>
<![CDATA[Ballpark Digest Named Hartford Yard Goats ‘2017 Team of the Year’]]>Fri, 10 Nov 2017 13:03:43 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/214*120/DD+Park+Photo+3.JPG

The Hartford Yard Goats have captured a large fan base over the two seasons the minor league baseball team has been in existence and Ballpark Digest has chosen the local club as the “2017 Team of the Year.” 

The award comes after the team’s inaugural year at the new park, Dunkin’ Donuts Park, since construction delays kept the team from playing at home the season before.

Earlier this year, the ballpark won the fan vote for Ballpark Digest’s “Best Double-A Ballpark.

The Yard Goats said the Team of the Year Award is given to “the club that made the biggest mark on the industry with improved operations, increased attendance and noticeable buzz.”

“This award really shows that our fans are the best in the business,” Yard Goats general manager Mike Abramson said in a statement. “To look around the ballpark and see the stands full each night says a lot about this community. We thank Ballpark Digest for this honor and we can’t wait to play ball in April of 2018.”

The Hartford Yard Goats are the Double-A Eastern League affiliate of the Colorado Rockies.

The Yard Goats will open the 2018 season on Thursday, April 5 at Dunkin’ Donuts Park, with a 7:05 p.m. start time, against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Prepare for Final Homestand of 2017 Season]]>Fri, 25 Aug 2017 15:45:06 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/AP_17103848218373.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats are preparing for the final homestand of the inaugural season at Dunkin' Donuts Park in Hartford.

The Yard Goats, the Double-A affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, have four games remaining at its new ballpark before the end of the 2017 season.  The team will play those games against the Portland Sea Dogs, the affiliate of the Boston Red Sox.

Monday's game is scheduled to start at 7:05 p.m. with Eastern League strikeout leader Ryan Castellani slated to get the start.  The theme for Monday is "Hero Night!" with fans being encouraged to dress as their favorite hero.  Gates will open at 6:00 p.m.

The games on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday are also scheduled for a 7:05 p.m. start with gates opening at 6:00 p.m. each night.  

Tuesday will feature an appearance by the Flippen' Out Trampoline Pros.

Thursday is Fan Appreciation Day and will include post-game fireworks from Atlas, along with a concert from hip-hop legend and pioneer Kurtis Blow.

The team has had a well-attended season with the Yard Goats selling out 27 games, including the past 17 home games and 22 of the last 26 game days, according to a team press release.  The Yard Goats were the second fastest team in the Eastern League to reach 350,000 fans, which was a mark set on August 21.

Tickets are available for the remaining games through the team's website or from the box office at the ballpark.

NBC Connecticut is proud to be the official television partner of the Hartford Yard Goats.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats to Hold Brew Fest at Dunkin' Donuts Park in October ]]>Wed, 20 Sep 2017 11:51:16 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Park-Hartford.jpg

Dunkin’ Donuts Park will transform from the home of the Hartford Yard Goats to the home of the “G.O.A.T. ‘Greatest of All Time’ Brew Fest” in October.

The Hartford Yard Goats Baseball Club is hosting its first Brew Fest at Dunkin’ Donuts Park on Saturday, Oct. 21, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The Bus Drivers will be performing the music. 

Tickets are $50 for general admission. A limited number of VIP, or VIG tickets, are $75 and the charge for designated drivers is $20.

Proceeds will benefit the Yard Goats Foundation, a Connecticut-based non-profit organization dedicated to providing social, educational and scholarship opportunities for the youth in local communities in connection with the activities of the Hartford Yard Goats Baseball Club.

You can get tickets by calling 860-246-GOAT (4628), online or in person at the Click It or Ticket Box Office at Dunkin’ Donuts Park. 

All guests must be 21 years or older to attend this event.

Beer sampling takes place from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. for attendees with a general admission ticket and you’ll get a collectible sample mug.

Guests who purchase a VIP, or VIG ticket, will be allowed early entry to Dunkin’ Donuts Park at noon and will also have access to the dugouts and warning track to hang and listen to the band.

Breweries that signed up early include Ballast Point Brewing Co., Goose Island, Jack’s Abby Craft Lagers, Long Trail, Shebeen Brewing Company and These Guys Brewing Company and more are expected to join the roster.

You can find more information and buy tickets online here.

NBC Connecticut is proud to be the exclusive television partner of the Yard Goats and the official media sponsor of the G.O.A.T. Brew Fest.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Announce 2018 Season Schedule]]>Thu, 03 Aug 2017 11:38:39 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Yard_Goats_Jingle_1200x675_615127107875.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats on Thursday announced their 2018 schedule, which includes 70 home games at Dunkin' Donuts Park.

The Goats will open the season at home in Hartford on Thursday, April 5 at 7:05 p.m. against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.

The team, the Double-A Eastern League Affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, will play home games in 2018 against the Red Sox, Yankees and Mets affiliates.

Most weekday home games during the 2018 season will start at 7:05 p.m. with Saturday home games starting at 6:05 p.m.  Sunday home games early in the season will start at 1:05 p.m.  Sunday home games in June, July, and August will be at 5:05 p.m.

Full season tickets are now on sale by calling 860-246-GOAT (4628).  Ticket packages, individual game tickets, and the promotional schedule will be announced by the team at a later date.

You can download or print the 2018 schedule here.

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<![CDATA[Yard Goats announce 2018 schedule]]>Thu, 03 Aug 2017 11:12:45 -0500]]><![CDATA[Yard Goats to Host 'What If' Night on Thursday]]>Wed, 26 Jul 2017 16:01:48 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/what+if+night+2.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats will become the Praying Mantis for one night.  On Thursday, July 27, the Goats will host "What If" Night at Dunkin' Donuts Park celebrating the name Praying Mantis, one of the five finalists when the team was hosting a naming contest in early 2015.

"We will no longer be the Yard Goats, we will be the Praying Mantis," said Dana Feigenbaum, the Yard Goats' promotions manager. "Great night. We have a secret special mascot who may be coming out. Everything in the ballpark will become Praying Mantis. No one will know what the Yard Goats are that night. Hats, jerseys, everything."

There are only two times during the 2017 season when the Yard Goats will wear special uniforms.  Those nights are Whalers Alumni Weekend, which took place earlier this month, and "What If" Night.  The first 2,000 fans will receive a special Praying Mantis baseball cap.  Fans will also have the chance to buy special Praying Mantis merchandise. 

Fan Jackson Grady submitted the name Praying Mantis in the team naming contest after the Connecticut state insect.

The other runners up for the team name were: Hedgehogs, River Hogs, and Whirlybirds.

"What If" Night on Thursday kicks off a busy four-game homestand for the Goats against the Reading Fightin Phils, the Double-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies.  

Thursday's game is scheduled to start at 7:05 p.m.  Gates will open at 6 p.m.

Friday's game will feature "Christmas in July" events, including cookie decorating, a dress up contest, and the chance to get your picture taken with Santa.  Post-game fireworks will light up the night sky.

Fireworks will also take place after the game Saturday night.

Sunday wraps up the homestand with the Chompers Mascot Bobblehead Giveaway for the first 2,000 fans.

NBC Connecticut is proud to sponsor "What If" Night and to be the official television partner of the Hartford Yard Goats.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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<![CDATA[Whalers and Yard Goats Players Visit Hospital Patients]]>Fri, 14 Jul 2017 11:02:37 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/YG+Whalers+visit+1a.jpg

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Host Whalers Alumni Weekend July 14-16]]>Mon, 10 Jul 2017 11:47:35 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/Whalers+yg+jersey+2.jpg

They departed the state for North Carolina twenty years ago, but Connecticut still has a deep fondness for the Hartford Whalers.  You can find the Whalers logo in restaurants, bars, and for sale at the airport.  Another place you can always find it is Dunkin' Donuts Park, the Hartford home of the Yard Goats baseball team.

Since designing the Yard Goats logo ahead of the scheduled 2016 season, the team knew it wanted to be connected to the great history of the Whalers in Hartford.

“When you look at our logo and the colors involved, the Whalers have always had a presence here even though they’ve been gone for several years," said Tim Restall, general manager of the Hartford Yard Goats.  

With this connection between the teams in mind, the Yard Goats planned a "Whalers Alumni Weekend" for this season.

"For us to embrace that [history] and have an alumni weekend, it was an automatic for this year," said Restall.

The Yard Goats sell Whalers hats regularly at the Retro Brand Team Store at the ballpark.  "Brass Bonanza" plays from the stadium speakers at games.  This a team that is well aware of the professional sports history in Hartford.

The Yard Goats are organizing a Whalers Alumni Weekend from Friday, July 14 through Sunday, July 16.  Each game during the weekend will allow the Yard Goats players to wear special jerseys made just for this weekend that throw back to the time two decades ago when the Whalers skated around the Hartford Civic Center.

"We've always been fans as an organization of the Whalers," said Dean Zappalorti, executive director of corporate partnerships for the Whalers.  "Our past has always been top of mind."

Zappalorti, a Connecticut native and lifelong Whalers fan, was given the task of organizing and planning the weekend.  He knows the excitement that the Whalers captured in Hartford, but he also knows the pain when the team moved south.

"For me, it's a labor of love to reach back out to all these guys I watched play for the Whalers as a kid, up until I was an adult and had the means to purchase season tickets," Zappalorti said.

At least 15 former Whalers will return to Hartford for the weekend's festivities.  Among the names coming back are Marty Howe, Dave and Wayne Babych, and Mark Janssens.  Chuck Kaiton, the voice of the Whalers, will also be taking part in the weekend's events.

“There still is a lot of passion in this market for the Whalers," said Zappalorti.  "To have these guys want to come back to some of their most memorable years of their playing days, and many of them still have very good friends in the area, it means a lot.  It makes me feel really good that these guys haven’t forgotten us because we haven’t forgotten them."

Jordy Douglas, who played several seasons in Hartford in the late 70's and early 80's, is looking forward to returning.

"My wife Joni and I are very excited to have the opportunity to return to the Hartford area......my first home and her first ever visit!!!!," Douglas wrote in an e-mail to NBC Connecticut. "Hartford is truly my first love and I am blessed to have wonderful memories and great friendships in the Hartford area!!!!!! We are looking forward to reconnecting with our friends, and making some new memories!! We especially want to THANK the Yard Goats for putting the Whaler Weekend together and for including us in their plans!!!!"

In addition to the special jerseys and the appearance of the players, Whalers weekend will also include audio clips of Chuck Kaiton calls from Whalers games, Whalers trading cards on the video board, and Whalers trivia.

"We play Brass Bonanza anyway when we hit a home run," Zappalorti said," but it will definitely be more prevalent that night."

Fans will be able to buy special Whalers weekend t-shirts as well as hats featuring the famous goat, but this time chewing on a hockey stick.  There will be both fitted and adjustable snapback versions of the hats.

Saturday afternoon there will be a charity luncheon at the YG Club at Dunkin' Donuts Park.  Fans can buy tickets for the event, which benefits the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Hartford.  Every table at the luncheon will have a former Whalers player sitting there.  The event will be emceed by Jeff Dooley, the voice of the Goats, and Chuck Kaiton.  Tickets are still available on the team's website or at the Dunkin' Donuts Park box office.

Before the game on Saturday night, fans will be able to meet the former Whalers and get autographs and pictures with them.  The players will then come onto the field to be recognized during the pregame festivities.

Sunday's game will feature a special Whalers alumni poster giveaway for the first 2,500 fans through the gates.

Fans of both teams are already excited for what the weekend will hold.

"We're getting a lot of questions and feedback through Twitter and Facebook," Zappalorti said.  "The feedback and the response has been fantastic."

The Yard Goats say this year's weekend is just the start.

"This is just the beginning," Zappalorti said. "Our intention is that this is just year one and we’re going to be doing this every year. So this year it will be 15 or 16 guys, and next year it may be 30. There were many guys that for one reason or another just had a conflict in their schedule and couldn’t come but said ‘I’m in for next year, make sure you include me.'"

Whalers fans no doubt will feel a great deal of nostalgia at the ballpark this weekend.

"It will be a special weekend," said Restall.  "So this is something we'll be able to do annually, to celebrate the history that was here with hockey, and incorporate it into minor league baseball."

To purchase tickets to the Whalers alumni luncheon on Saturday, click here.  Proceeds from the luncheon benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Hartford.

To purchase tickets to any of the games this weekend, click here.

Here is the full list of confirmed Whalers players to return for Whalers Alumni Weekend:

Chuck Kaiton (voice of the Whalers)

Marty Howe

Dave & Wayne Babych

Bob Crawford

Mark Janssens

Mike Rogers

Jordy Douglas

Grant Jennings

Ed Hospodar

Norm Barnes

Yvon Corriveau

Dan Fridgen

Bill Bennett

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<![CDATA[Yard Goats July Promotions: Whalers Weekend, 'What If' Night]]>Tue, 04 Jul 2017 15:57:21 -0500 The Yard Goats and Atlas put on fireworks at Dunkin' Donuts Park every Friday and Saturday night. "Fireworks is always its own promotion so I try not to do a giveaway on a night there is fireworks, " Yard Goats promotions manager Dana Feigenbaum said. "It's a great way to end the night. Atlas does a really good job with our fireworks. They coordinate the songs with the fireworks so it all coincides with each other. It's great cause it happens right here in the outfield after the game."]]> The Yard Goats and Atlas put on fireworks at Dunkin' Donuts Park every Friday and Saturday night. "Fireworks is always its own promotion so I try not to do a giveaway on a night there is fireworks, " Yard Goats promotions manager Dana Feigenbaum said. "It's a great way to end the night. Atlas does a really good job with our fireworks. They coordinate the songs with the fireworks so it all coincides with each other. It's great cause it happens right here in the outfield after the game."]]>https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*129/DDP+Fireworks.jpeg

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Gear for Whalers Alumni Weekend]]>Sun, 09 Jul 2017 15:59:26 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/Whalers+YG+jersey+1.jpg

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Dunkin' Donuts Location at Dunkin' Donuts Park]]>Wed, 05 Jul 2017 16:45:53 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/dd+ddp+customers.jpg

It's one of the most unique Dunkin' Donuts locations in the area.  It's the Dunkin' Donuts franchise at Dunkin' Donuts Park, the Hartford Yard Goats stadium on the edge of downtown Hartford.

The location not only provides coffee and donuts for customers, but it also stocks up the park's concession stands with donuts for the DD BLT and the famous Chicken and Munchkin' Skewers.

"When we first opened, it was a mad house in here," said Jennifer Marquez from Great American Donuts.  "But now they got a good rhythm and we're good."

There's a lot of pressure in operating a store in a ballpark named after the brand.  But there was also a lot of interest from prospective employees who wanted to work at the park.  

"Every time there is a callout, everyone around wants to work here because it's fun, and it's different, and it's exciting," Marquez said.

One of those team members who wanted to work there since before the home opener is Talia Santiago.

"Why would you not want to work at the Yard Goats stadium," Santiago said.  "Look how pretty it is in here.  It's a lot of fun.  I like working here.  If I got to choose where to work between all the stores, i'd stay here."

That's not to say that it's easy to work at the ballpark location.

"It's really super busy," Santiago said.  "It's nonstop."

This location can serve up to two-thousand Munchkins a day, depending on the weather.  The popular items at the store really are influenced by the temperatures.

"[When we first opened], it was cold," Marquez said.  "There were a lot of hot drinks.  Our hot chocolate machine couldn't keep up.  It was a lot of hot coffee and hot chocolate going out, but now it's switched.  Now, it's a lot of iced coffee going out."

The most popular drinks so far this summer are the iced coffee and the frozen coffee.  But there will always be interest in those sweet treats.

"The donuts are a hot commodity because of all the kids," Marquez said.  

The employees at this Dunkin' Donuts will often see regular customers from other downtown locations.  

"They do get excited when they see some of their regular customers come in," said Marquez.  "The [team members] already know their order.  They get their favorite coffee.  They get their favorite donuts."

When things quiet down later during each game, the employees get a chance to watch some baseball.

"It’s a really great place to work," Santiago said.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Top Rockies Prospect Brendan Rodgers Joining Yard Goats]]>Fri, 23 Jun 2017 13:25:51 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/brendan+rodgers.jpg

The top prospect in the Colorado Rockies organization is coming to play for the Hartford Yard Goats, the team's Double-A Eastern League affiliate.  Shortstop Brendan Rodgers has been promoted from Class-A Lancaster to the Goats.

He will become the highest ever draft-pick to play for the Yard Goats.  Rodgers was the first pick by the Rockies in the 2015 draft, and the 3rd overall pick that draft.  

Rodgers becomes the youngest player on the Yard Goats roster at age 20.  He just played in the California League All-Star game on Tuesday.

Rodgers has monster stats in California.  He's leading the California League with a .400 batting average, .419 on base percentage, .700 slugging percentage, and 147 total bases.

He is listed by Baseball America as the number 16 overall prospect and the best power hitter in the Rockies organization.  MLB.com ranks him as the number 10 overall prospect in the minors.

He is joining the team in uniform tonight in Richmond, Va.  He'll return with the team to Hartford on Monday for his first homestand as a Goat against the Binghamton Rumble Ponies, the New York Mets Double-A affiliate.

Lancaster infield Brian Mundell was also promoted to the Yard Goats from the JetHawks.

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Host 'You Can Play' Night Monday]]>Tue, 27 Jun 2017 17:34:44 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/SelfPromo+YouCanPlay.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats are breaking new ground in the minor leagues and partnering with the 'You Can Play Project' for Monday night's game against the Binghamton Rumble Ponies.  

The 'You Can Play' organization is dedicated to celebrating LGBTQ athletes and helping them feel welcome in sports at all levels, according to the organization's website.  

The Yard Goats will be the first team in Double-A and one of the first in all of minor league baseball to specifically host a night in partnership with You Can Play, said Jillian Svensson, Vice President of Development and Operations for the You Can Play Project.

You Can Play's current partners include: the National Hockey League, Major League Soccer, the Canadian Football League, the American Hockey League, the National Women's Hockey League, and Major League Lacrosse.

The organization was started after the death of Brendan Burke, son of NHL executive Brian Burke and brother to former NHL scout and NHL director of public safety Patrick Burke.  Brendan worked for the Miami University of Ohio athletics department as a student-manager.  Brendan had come out publicly in 2009, shortly before his tragic death several later in a car accident at age 21.

Brendan had quit the sport of hockey because he was discriminated against in the locker room, Svensson said.  His family wanted to honor Brendan and his courageous steps to fight locker room homophobia so they started the You Can Play Project in 2012.

"You Can Play was created to honor Brendan and the work we feel he would be doing," Svensson said.  "It really honors his legacy as an advocate in this space."  Svensson said the organization works with sports companies to create inclusive atmospheres for players, coaches, and fans.

Dana Feigenbaum, the Yard Goats promotions manager, had partnered with the You Can Play Project when she worked for the America East Conference. Every team in that conference, including the University of Hartford got fully behind the organization.

Feigenbaum said she wanted to bring a similar message of inclusion to Dunkin' Donuts Park and hopefully across Double-A baseball.  So she pitched the idea to the Yard Goats front office.

"I brought it up and I wasn't sure how people were going to react to the idea," said Feigenbaum.  "But everyone on the front office staff got behind the idea, no question.  They all think it's a great idea.  And everyone is so positive about it in the office."

"Dana should get so much credit," Svensson said.  "I think it's a testament to the work that the America East Conference does as well that one of their people who then left the conference and went on to another job was so inspired and affected by the message that they took it and wanted to effect change in their new environment.  I think it's so incredible to be in new spaces.  That's the power of what we do.  Our strength is in our partnerships."

While many organizations host Pride nights, the Yard Goats wanted specifically to work with You Can Play focusing on diversity and inclusion in sports.  

"I think it's really important to help kids learn [the message] at such a young age," said Feigenbaum.

Svensson said that sports have the rare opportunity to directly impact social change.  She hopes that exposing the You Can Play message to the fans at a Yard Goats game will help spread the organization's goals to kids in the community.

"For us to have an opportunity to promote our message and our mission in front of a new audience is exactly what's needed," Svensson said.  "We want to inspire people to bring the You Can Play message into their world and then think how can I integrate that. Being able to be with the Yard Goats is so new and exciting and we can build on that in future years."

For You Can Play Night on Monday, the Yard Goats are giving away rainbow-colored bracelets that say 'Hartford Yard Goats' and 'You Can Play."  Several Yard Goats players are also participating in a Public Safety Announcement video that will play at the ballpark and on social media.  The team will sell shirts at the team store that have the Yard Goats logo in rainbow colors.  Fans will also have the opportunity to sign a banner that says "You Can Play."  

"Some of the players asked if when we give out the bracelets that they can get some to give to their familes," said Feigenbaum.  "It's just a really important cause to everyone."

"We know that sports has not been a safe space and continues not to be a safe space in many regards for LGBTQ youth," Svensson said.  "So the opportunity to bring this to the community of Yard Goats fans is amazing."  The You Can Play project believes that players serve a unique role as role models in society and can help share the message of inclusion.

"The Yard Goats are definitely taking the lead on this [in minor league baseball]," said Svensson.

Feigenbaum said the Colorado Rockies, the parent club of the Goats and affectionately known around DDP as "Dad", has a pride night where they will host You Can Play representatives.

"It's really important to show that we don't discriminate in the locker room," said Feigenbaum.  "Everyone is an athlete and treated equally whether they're a girl or a boy, gay or bisexual."

"Our message is really it doesn't matter your sexual orientation or gender identity," Svensson said.  "If you can play, you can play.  All that should matter to your teammates is what you're producing, if you're a good teammate, and if you have the passion and skill."

Tickets for You Can Play Night are available on the Yard Goats website.

For more information on the You Can Play project, you can visit their website here.

<![CDATA[Yard Goats' Pitcher Ryan Castellani Takes One Day at a Time]]>Tue, 20 Jun 2017 15:52:43 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Ryan+Castellani.jpg

Ryan Castellani takes to the mound every five days to pitch for the Hartford Yard Goats, the Double-A affiliate of the Colorado Rockies.  But it's his family's connection to the Philadelphia Phillies that helped shape his dreams for the big leagues.

Castellani's mother worked for the Phillies for nearly 30 years, ending up in the front office.

"My parents had a big role in who I am," Castellani said.  "[My mom] was definitely a big influence on me and to prepare me."  Castellani remembers going to the Phillies' ballpark when he was growing up and being inspired seeing how it all worked.

The righthanded pitcher (5-6, 5.61 ERA) has had a mixed season in Hartford if you just look at the stats.  His ERA is higher than the Eastern League average.  But he's also the runaway leader for strikeouts on the team with 67 (through June 19).  

Castellani said there is much more to his season than just the stat line.  He had a slow start but has seen more success as of late and feels he's going in the right direction.

"I'm going to go through a tough month here and there," he said.  "But that's when you learn the most about who you are, where you're at, and what you need to work on.  I've been beating myself.

"At the beginning of the season, I had to go through a couple stressful outings.  That was a good learning experience to see where I was at and make a couple of adjustments with my mechanics.  Just a little but here and there.  And recently, it's been paying off."

Castellani believes he's settling into Double-A baseball and learning what he needs to do to get hitters out.  But he's also not afraid to reflect back on tough starts to see what he can learn.

"One month isn't going to define it," he said.  "As long as I learn and make the changes, then I'm good."

Castellani was selected by the Colorado Rockies in the second round of the 2014 Draft.  He was picked number 48 overall coming out of Brophy Jesuit Prep in Phoenix, Ariz.  He committed to Arizona State University before being drafted.  

At 21, he's one of the younger players in the Eastern League.  He's used to that feeling.  Castellani has been ahead in age of most players at each level he's been through.  He attributes his success in the different levels to the Rockies being cautious and making sure he is in a good place physically and mentally before they let him start.

He spent the second half of the 2014 season with the Tri-City Dust Devils and Boise Hawks before joining the Asheville Tourists for 2015.  While in Asheville, Castellani was kept to four-inning starts.

"It was frustrating," he said. "I wanted to go longer.  They knew I wanted to go longer.  But there was a whole process and a plan in mind.  I'm extremely grateful for what I went through and the lessons I was able to learn."

He admits "It's definitely good to have a pitch count."

"I learned to hold back and be patient," Castellani said.  "It's all about the process of it all at every level to prepare you for the Major Leagues."

He said last year playing in the California League for the Modesto Nuts (High Class A) was when he felt for the first time like a full-time, legitimate starter.

He was a Class A All-Star in the California League and more importantly, Modesto is where he fine tuned his dangerous (and much talked about) slider.

"Having that, it just opens up so much more," Castellani said.  "It opens up a change up, it opens up a curveball.  It's been a big pitch for me.  It's a constant grind every day to improve it."

Castellani said his fastball-slider combo is his favorite, though many Eastern League hitters would likely disagree after striking out.

A lot of fans and scouts will compare him to Washington Nationals starter Max Scherzer.  That makes sense, because Castellani looks up to Scherzer and knows they have a similar delivery.  But that's not completely by accident.

The two share an off season pitching coach in Arizona.

During his senior year in high school, Castellani admits to skipping the beginning of a school day (his English and math classes) to watch Scherzer pitch a bullpen session.

Now, they are friends and hang out in the offseason.  They try to watch each other's starts and stay in touch when possible.

Castellani said he admires Sherzer's intensity and mindset.

The two could one day be facing off against each other in a big league park.

Castellani was invited this past February to spring training with the Rockies in Arizona, less than 15 minutes from his off season home there.

"It's an awesome experience that [this all] happened and also just being with the Rockies," he said. "I love the organization."

This is his first season with Hartford and his first season in Double-A.  He was the team's Opening Day starter in Richmond.

Like many of the players, Castellani is grateful to play at a brand-new ballpark like Dunkin' Donuts Park.

"The stadium is incredible," he said.  "What you feel from the fans is they're not just coming to the game as something to do for the night.  You can tell that they're into the game.  They're watching.  You can tell that they know what's going on.  They're pumped when you get out of a jam.  Bases loaded, no outs.  Something like that, they love it."

He is very appreciative of the way that the area's fans have gotten behind the team and its players.

"You can tell that the city is behind it," Castellani said.  "They love the Yard Goats.  It's pretty cool to be able to be the only pro [baseball] team in the state."

Castellani has had a chance to enjoy the Bear's Barbeque stand in left field and says it's his favorite food in the park.  When he's not playing, Castellani enjoys going out in downtown Hartford to restaurants like Salute.

"I'm Italian, so I love Italian food."

On a rare day off, Castellani likes to go Major League parks and catch a game.  He's hoping to make it to see the Green Monster and Fenway Park this season.  But at the end of the day, he's just happy putting on a jersey at DDP.

"It's a good environment," he said.  "It's busy, it's energetic.  It just makes the game way better."

The website Purple Row which tracks the Colorado Rockies minor leaguers and prospects suggests that Castellani could be in the rotation in Coors Field by late 2018 or early 2019.  But Castellani says he doesn't pay attention to any timelines and just takes one day at a time.

“I know that the decisions are way above me," Castellani said. I can’t do anything about them other than go out and pitch. I just have to wait patiently.”

From being a young fan in Philadelphia looking up to baseball players to now being in the rotation for the Yard Goats, Castellani said he knows how fortunate he is and he remembers that regularly.

"I wanted to do this my whole life," he said.  "It's a dream come true.  I know i'm blessed every day.  I can't take it for granted."

It wasn't just his mother's career in Major League Baseball that helped inspire Ryan.  There may have also been some divine intervention.  

He was born on the same day as the scheduled Philadelphia Phillies' Opening Day in 1996 before rain pushed the game to the next day.

"I guess I was destined to play baseball," he said.  "I guess God had a rain delay for me."

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats]]>
<![CDATA[Dunkin' Donuts Park Voted Top Double-A Ballpark]]>Mon, 19 Jun 2017 16:25:29 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/214*120/DD+Park+Photo+3.JPG

Dunkin' Donuts Park, the home of the Hartford Yard Goats, was voted by fans as the number one Double-A ballpark in America.  

The contest was part of an online, bracket-style competition by Ballpark Digest that saw the Double-A Eastern League Affiliate of the Rockies beat out the Altoona Curve.  More than 178,000 fans voted over the three week period to select the best MiLB ballparks.

This is the first season the Yard Goats have played at Dunkin' Donuts Park in Hartford.  So far this season, the team has sold out the stadium 15 times.  Fans have filled the stadium to capacity in 11 of the past 17 home games.  Nearly 20,000 fans came to watch the team in Hartford this past weekend alone.

“We are extremely proud to hear that fans voted Dunkin’ Donuts Park as the best Double-A ballpark in the country,” Yard Goats General Manager Tim Restall said. “We want to thank all the fans for taking time to vote over the past few weeks and for Ballpark Digest for having this contest to help showcase Dunkin’ Donuts Park on a national level. This is such a wonderful honor and we have been completely overjoyed by the outstanding fan support at our games in Hartford this season.”

Ballpark Digest began the contest on May 30.  Dunkin’ Donuts Park competed against 30 Double-A clubs across the country in the Eastern League, Texas League and Southern League.

The Yard Goats defeated the Bowie Baysox (Eastern League) in the first round, Biloxi Shuckers (Southern League) in the second round, Akron RubberDucks (Eastern League) in the quarterfinals and Richmond Flying Squirrels (Eastern League) in the semi-finals to advance to the Championship round against Altoona (Eastern League).

The Yard Goats are on the road now but return to Dunkin' Donuts Park on Monday, June 26 to face the Binghamton Rumble Ponies, the New York Mets affiliate.

Tickets for all home games are on sale here.

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats
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<![CDATA[Hartford Yard Goats Reach Finals of Ballpark Contest]]>Thu, 15 Jun 2017 13:23:36 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin%27-Donuts-Sign-at-Yard-Goats%27-Ballpark.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats are in the running to win the title of best Double-A ballpark in the country and they need your help to secure the victory. 

The local minor league team made it to the final round of Ballpark Digest’s “Best of the Ballparks 2017: Double A” competition.  But they need your help to advance and be named the winners.

Dunkin' Donuts Park is facing Peoples Natural Gas Field, the stadium for the Altoona Curve.  The Curve also plays in the Eastern League.

This is the first year the Yard Goats are playing in the new stadium in downtown Hartford.  Dunkin' Donuts Park opened in April.

Last year's Best of the Ballparks contest winner was the Pensacola Bayfront Stadium, home of the Pensacola Blue Wahoos.

Other Eastern League stadiums in this year's competition include: FirstEnergy Stadium, Hadlock Field, ARM & HAMMER Park, Canal Park, FNB Field, The Diamond, and Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.

You can vote multiple times in the contest, but you can only do so once a day.

The final round of the competition ends at noon on Monday.

To vote, click here.

Do it for Chompers and Chew Chew!

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Plan Busy Promotional Schedule for June]]>Mon, 29 May 2017 14:43:13 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/Post-Game+Atlas+Fireworks.jpegThe Hartford Yard Goats, the AA-affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, are planning a full promotional schedule for the month of June. Giveaways will include fidget spinners, a bobblehead, and salt and pepper shakers.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Offering Employees Discounts on College Tuition]]>Fri, 09 Jun 2017 11:08:48 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/yard+goats+day+one.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats are offering employees a 10 percent discount for programs at Albertus Magnus College.

The baseball club said they have reached a partnership with the college to offer the discount to full-time, part-time and seasonal Yard Goats employees for accelerated undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

Albertus Magnus College is also waiving application fees for Yard Goats employees.

“This unique benefit is another great way to help us attract great employees and at the same time help better the lives of our staff, the majority of whom are Hartford residents,” Yard Goats assistant general manager Mike Abramson said in a news release.

To apply for a position with the Yard Goats, visit the Yard Goats website

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Help Hartford Yard Goats Win Best Ballpark Competition ]]>Mon, 05 Jun 2017 14:19:37 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin%27-Donuts-Sign-at-Yard-Goats%27-Ballpark.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats are in the running to win the title of best Double A ballpark in the country and they need your help to secure the victory. 

The local minor league team made it to the second round of Ballpark Digest’s “Best of the Ballparks 2017: Double A” competition. 

Dunkin Donuts Park is in the running against MGM Park in Biloxi, Mississippi, home of the Biloxi Shuckers, to make it to round three.  

This is the first year the Yard Goats are playing in the new stadium in downtown Hartford. 

You can vote multiple times, but you can only do so once a day.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats' Ryan McMahon Bumped Up to Triple-A]]>Thu, 01 Jun 2017 13:58:32 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/ryan+McMahon.jpg

Yard Goats infielder Ryan McMahon got the call all Double-A ball players want to get.  McMahon headed out west and will now be playing for the Rockies' Triple-A team, the Albuquerque Isotopes, Yard Goats spokesman Jeff Dooley confirmed.

McMahon spent the beginning of the 2017 season and the full 2016 season playing for the Hartford Yard Goats.  In the 2017 season with Hartford, McMahon hit .326 with six home runs and 32 RBI.  

After struggling some during the 2016 season, McMahon certainly got into a groove with the team in its inaugural season at Dunkin' Donuts Park.

McMahon, 22, was well liked among his fellow Goats, who wish him lots of success at the next level.

"He's a great teammate," starting pitcher Ryan Castellani said.  "He has an extremely positive mindset about baseball.  He's a good guy in the clubhouse to have...I love watching him."

McMahon is often listed on scouting sites as one of the top 10 propsects in the Rockies' organization.  He's had the chance to start around the infield at first, second and third base. He started his last games for the Goats at third base.

McMahon has been in the Rockies' farm system since 2013 when he was drafted in the second round.  He is originally from Orange County, California.

Don't be surprised if we see McMahon playing at Coors Field in 2018.

<![CDATA[Dunkin' Donuts Park to Host USA vs. Japan Game in July]]>Tue, 30 May 2017 10:21:32 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Box-Office-at-Dunkin%27-Donuts-Stadium.jpg

Dunkin’ Donuts Park will host a Team USA versus Team Japan Collegiate All-Star baseball game this July, the Hartford Yard Goats announced Tuesday.

The game will be on Wednesday, July 12 with a 7:05 p.m. start time. It will be the only game of the series in Connecticut.

“We are excited to work with USA Baseball to bring this event to our fans in Hartford,” Yard Goats General Manager Tim Restall wrote ina statement. “This will be a wonderful opportunity to showcase some of the greatest amateur players in the world, and at the same time, show off baseball’s greatest minor league ballpark.”

Tickets for the game are $10 and can be purchased by calling the Yard Goats at 860-246-GOAT (4628), online here, or in person at the Dunkin’ Donuts Park box office.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats' Unusual Strikeout Becomes Viral Sensation]]>Mon, 29 May 2017 16:11:56 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Third-Base-Line-at-Dunkin%27-Donuts-Stadium.jpg

It's the odd strikeout that has gone viral.

Connecticut's Double-A minor league baseball team, the Yard Goats, played the Binghamton Rumble Ponies on Friday. In the top of the eighth inning, with the count at 1-2, Rumble Ponies pitcher Cory Burns lost his footing and threw the ball into the grass near the first base line.

Goats batter Josh Fuentes jokingly took a swing. But the ball was still live. The umpire called it a strike.

That was Fuentes' third strike and led to the end of the inning. And the Yard Goats ended up losing the game 5-4.

The play went viral and lead to a flurry of social media posts. Should the umpire have called a strike? Should Fuentes have known better?

Fuentes took to Twitter and had a good sense of humor about the strikeout.

The Yard Goats chimed in on the fun on social media.

Not everyone agreed that the umpire should have called a strike on what was an obvious joke swing. But technically, the ball was still live and play was still underway.    

Baseball fans around the country couldn't resist the opportunity to weigh in.

Through Sunday, Fuentes was batting .255 with 38 hits, 13 runs, three home runs, 22 RBI, and leading the team with four triples.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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<![CDATA[Hartford Yard Goats Merchandise for Sale]]>Mon, 29 May 2017 16:41:58 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/Alt+Cap+28+dollars.jpg

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats' Mascots Chompers and Chew Chew in Photos]]>Mon, 29 May 2017 15:16:53 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Chompers+and+Chew+Chew+1200.jpg

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats to Give Away Fidget Spinners]]>Mon, 29 May 2017 13:12:56 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/yard+goats+fidget.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats will give away fidget spinners before an upcoming game.  The fidget spinner giveaway, just recently unveiled as an update to the Yard Goats' 2017 promotional schedule, will take place on Tuesday, June 13 as part of the game against the Trenton Thunder.

It was already expected to be a popular game since the Thunder are the AA-affiliate of the New York Yankees.  Now, expect a rush to get to Dunkin' Donuts Park when the gates open.

The game is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.  The gates are scheduled to open at 6 p.m.

The team is planning to have blue and green spinners, each with the Yard Goats logo.

"I see [kids around the ballpark] with generic ones so I think those will go really fast," said Dana Feigenbaum, the Yard Goats' promotions manager.

If you want a fidget spinner for your kids, make sure you get there early.  

IMPORTANT NOTE: The fidget spinner giveaway is good for the first 1,000 kids age 12 and under.

Tickets to the June 13 game are available now through the Yard Goats' website.

NBC Connecticut is proud to be the exclusive television partner and a leadership sponsor of the Harford Yard Goats.

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Salute the Military Tonight]]>Fri, 19 May 2017 14:50:46 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/180*120/Crowded+DD.jpeg

The Hartford Yard Goats are returning home for a three-game weekend homestand against the Akron Rubberducks at Dunkin' Donuts Park.  Friday's game will include a salute to local service members as part of Military Appreciation Night.  

Gates will open at 6 p.m. with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m.  WWII veteran Fen Feigenbaum, 92, will throw out a ceremonial first pitch. 

Konner Wade (1-3, 2.63 ERA) will get the start for the Goats.  Julian Merryweather (3-2, 2.89 ERA) will take the mound for the Fisher Cats.

The homestand continues on Saturday evening with a game, which will start at 6:05 p.m.  Following the games Friday and Saturday nights against the AA-affiliate of the Cleveland Indians fans will be treated to fireworks.  

The Yard Goats will wrap up the homestand on Sunday before a roadtrip to Bowie and Binghamton.  First pitch for Sunday's game is 1:35 p.m.  Promotions on Sunday include a baseball cap giveaway and Chompers' birthday celebration.  Kids will also be able to run the bases after the game.

Tickets are available for the weekend series through the Yard Goats.

The Yard Goats next home series begins May 30 against Richmond.

NBC Connecticut is proud to be the official television partner of the Hartford Yard Goats.

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Return Home for Weeklong Homestand]]>Mon, 08 May 2017 15:55:33 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/yard+goats+dunkin+donut+opener.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats are returning home to Dunkin' Donuts Park tonight for the first game in a seven-game homestand.  The Goats will take on the New Hamshire Fisher Cats, the Toronto Blue Jays affilate at 7:05 p.m.  The team is going for its third straight win.

Tonight's starting pitcher is RHP Konner Wade, who will be making his first start of the season and his 75th career start.  Wade pitched in relief in Harrisburg on Friday with two strikeouts from the bullpen.  Wade's career record is 21-30 with a 3.96 ERA.

The Yard Goats are coming off a split of a four-game weekend in Harrisburg.  The Goats are 2-5 so far this month and 10-17 on the season. 

Upcoming promotions include: Baseball bingo on Tuesday, Baseball in Education Day on Wednesday, and Fireworks on Friday night.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Students from Horace Potter School in Columbia Enjoy Yard Goats Game]]>Wed, 03 May 2017 11:16:11 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Students_from_Horace_Potter_School_in_Columbia_Enjoy_Yard_Goats_1200x675_935493699740.jpg]]><![CDATA[Sights From the Yard Goats' Home Opener]]>Thu, 13 Apr 2017 21:08:55 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/yard+goats+opening+11.jpg

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Get First Win at Dunkin' Donuts Park]]>Thu, 20 Apr 2017 21:38:36 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/DDP+win.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats picked up their first win at Dunkin' Donuts Park on Thursday against the Harrisburg Senators.  The Goats took the game by a score of 1-0.

In front of a crowd of 3,270 cheering fans, the Yard Goats closed out their first win following five home losses and a six-game losing streak overall. 

Starter Yency Almonte won his first game of the year after striking out 10 batters.

Earlier in the evening, Omar Carrizalez scored the only run of the game thanks to a triple by Josh Fuentes off starter Erik Fedde.

The game lasted two hours and twenty-nine minutes.

It was a historic night for downtown Hartford with the city's new baseball team picking up its long-anticipated first win at home.

The Goats now head out on the road to New Hampshire for a game Friday night.  

The team will next be back in Hartford for a three-game series next weekend against Richmond, followed by a three-game series against Portland.  Individual game tickets are available now for the season.

NBC Connecticut is proud to be the official TV partner of the Hartford Yard Goats.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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<![CDATA[3 Charged With Scalping Yard Goats Tickets]]>Fri, 14 Apr 2017 13:15:36 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/yard+goats+scalped+tickets.JPG

Three people were arrested during the first night of Hartford Yard Goats baseball, accused of scalping tickets to the game.

Hartford police detectives were watching several people suspected of illegally selling tickets to the baseball game and arrested three people accused of scalping 17 tickets.

The three suspects were charged with ticket scalping.

Photo Credit: Hartford Police]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Lose First Game, But Fans Say Opener Still a Win]]>Thu, 13 Apr 2017 22:36:57 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/yard-goats-game.jpg

The Yard Goats may have lost its opener but fans say this was still a win as thousands filled the seats at the Hartford ballpark.

Under the bright lights, thousands rooted for the new home team, as the Hartford Yard Goats took on the New Hampshire Fisher Cats at Dunkin’ Donuts Park.

The team lost 7-2 against the New Hampshire team, which is the Double-A affiliate for the Toronoto Blue Jays. 

"Opening night, been waiting a long time," Shirley Babiec, of Manchester, said. 

Some 7,000 fans scoped out the action and the recently completed stadium.

A sold out crowd filled the seats and even overflow standing rooms tickets were snagged for a chance to witness history.

“I think it’s really nice. A lot nicer than I expected to tell you the truth," George Polinski, of East Hartford, said. 

But, not everyone at the game was there to compliment the $70 million project.

A small group stood outside and hoped fans and political leaders remember the challenges, delays and pitfalls it took to for the team, formerly known as the New Britain Rock Cats, to get to Hartford.

"My fear is that if we’re not out here continuously bringing this message to everyone’s memory it will happen again," Debra Cohen, who was protesting, said. 

Hartford’s mayor Luke Bronin said, despite criticisms in the past, it’s time to embrace this venture.

"After the long and rocky road that we traveled to get here, it’s hugely exciting and obviously a huge relief to be here today," Bronin said.

That’s why for many, the night was about fun. And a chance to sample a signature Dunkin Donuts Park BLT, made with donuts.

Many said they will be back and hope this leads to even bigger things for the city.

“This is why you take on these types of enterprises because it usually affects those things around it in a more positive light.” Patricia Williams, of Hartford said. 

Yard Goats will play 70 games this season. You can find the full schedule here.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Meet the Yard Goats' Home Opener Ball Kid Fighting Leukemia]]>Thu, 13 Apr 2017 20:11:32 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Genevieve-Neiman.jpg

Yard Goats' home opener was special for one little girl from Somers.

Ten-year-old Genevieve Neiman was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in June 2016. The cancer depletes white blood cells and causes Genevieve to have a tough time fighting off infections.

"I don’t really get to do a lot because there’s a lot of germs everywhere so I have to be careful where I’m going," said Genevieve.

For the Yard Goats' first home game, Genevieve has been named the Yard Goats' ball kid.

Just like the players, she’ll be center stage with them helping them in the dugout. She will even throw out a pitch before the game.

"It will be a once in a lifetime chance to do it," said Genevieve.

It’s all part of a program by Connecticut Children’s Medical Center where children at the hospital can get the chance to be a ball kid for some of the home games.

"They are immersed in the game, they are a member of that Yardgoats team and I got to tell you those ball players do a tremendous job making them a part of the team," said director of communications for Connecticut Children’s, Monica Buchanan.

That’s exactly how the team made Genevieve feel while she was at the hospital. Players visited her at Connecticut Children’s when she was first admitted in June.

What’s also special about being the ball kid tonight is this week she completed 10 months of high dosage chemo treatments.

Instead of going to the hospital at least once a week, she now just has to go once a month for maintenance chemo, which is little easier for her body.

“It’s just a huge relief and celebration and time for us to be happy and share it with the world,” said Meredith Neiman, Genevieve’s mother.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Play Ball in Dunkin' Donuts Park]]>Thu, 13 Apr 2017 22:24:54 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Photo-Apr-13-7-30-34-PM.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats played their first game at Dunkin' Donuts Park in downtown Hartford Thursday night.  

The team may have lost to New Hampshire Fisher Cats, 7-2, but fans say this was still a win as thousands filled the seats at the Hartford ballpark.

Jeff Dooley, the voice of the Yard Goats, called the ballpark "America's newest great ballpark" and said it offers something for everyone.

One of the unique features of the park is that steam rose from the big Dunkin' Donuts cup on top of the scoreboard in left field to signal a home run. 

There were plenty of places to grab food, including "The Grazin' Goat" and "Dark Blues Diner," on the concourse. 

"I think fans are going to be blown away by what they see here and we look forward to greeting them," Tim Restall, the general manager, said before the game.

The Yard Goats previously announced their full promotional schedule for their inaugural season at Dunkin' Donuts Park.  Promotions include fireworks and premium giveaways. See the full schedule here.

Tickets average around $12 and purchasing information is available on the team's website. Thursday's game weas sold out, except for standing room tickets.

Hartford's Double-A Eastern League team will play 70 home games this year at Dunkin' Donuts Park.  

The team is an affiliate of the Colorado Rockies.  The Yard Goats will play the New Hampshire Fisher Cats in the inaugural game at the new stadium.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Standing Room Tickets Go on Sale for Yard Goats Home Opener]]>Wed, 12 Apr 2017 11:00:58 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Park-Hartford.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats will be making a limited number of standing room tickets available for tomorrow night's sold-out home opener for fans who previously missed out on tickets but want to be there for the team’s first home game.

The standing room tickets will go on sale at 2 p.m. today and they will sell for $8.

Fans can purchase the remaining standing room tickets online, over the phone at 860-246-4628, or in-person at the Click It or Ticket Box Office.

The Yard Goats’ home opener is Thursday, April 13 at 7:05 p.m. against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats Toronto Blue Jays affiliate. All seats are sold out.

The Hartford Yard Goats are the Double-A Eastern League affiliate of the Colorado Rockies and they will be playing at Dunkin’ Donuts Park, a brand new baseball stadium built for the team in downtown Hartford.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Dunkin' Donuts Park Goes Dark in First Game]]>Wed, 12 Apr 2017 09:08:09 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/dark+dunkin+donuts+park.jpg

College teams took to the baseball diamond for Dunkin' Donuts Park's first game ever, and the stadium had its first major glitch.

Tuesday's "dress rehearsal" for the stadium matched The Hartford Hawks against the Quinnipiac Bobcats. 

While the teams were in the 8th inning, the field lights suddenly shut off, leaving players in the dark. Yard Goats General Manager Tim Restall said they discovered the light system came with a default setting to turn off at 10 p.m.

It took about 15 minutes for the lights to warm up and pop back on, and the game resumed. NBC Connecticut was told that the setting has already been changed so it won't happen again.

Even with that bump, everyone was in good spirits Tuesday night as they saw baseball coming back to Hartford.

Concession stands opened up and the gates swung open to reveal a Dunkin Donuts Park ready for baseball.

"Unbelievable. This is a perfect first day of baseball for us," said Justin Adamowicz of West Hartford.

"Ballpark is beautiful. It's one of the nicest minor league ballpark facilities I've seen," said Brandon Turkish, who attends the University of Hartford.

Turkish came to cheer on his team but says he'll be back for the Yard Goats opener on Thursday.

Officials say Tuesday's soft opening is a dress rehearsal for the Yard Goat’s Thursday game to test operations and make sure all the equipment is in working order.

While NBC Connecticut was told there is still work taking place to complete the park, it's all behind the scenes finishing touches, and it's nothing ticket holders will notice.

In the kitchens, cooks stayed busy keeping up with orders and preparing unique menu items, including the Dunkin' Donuts BLT, which is a BLT with donuts.

Fans of all ages came out to watch the Hawks and Bobcats play. The Yard Goats say with Thursday's season opener selling out in 30 minutes, it shows fans are ready for the return of baseball to Hartford.

The Hawks beat the Bobcats 6-4. 

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Hartford Yard Goats Announce Opening Day Roster]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 10:47:01 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Yard-Goats-Locker-Room.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats announced their 2017 Opening Day roster. The team includes 13 pitchers and 12 position players.

Ten of the players on the club are returning from last year’s team. The Opening Day roster includes 13 pitchers and 12 position players.

Two of the players on the roster are considered top 10 prospects of the Colorado Rockies. Those players as listed by “Baseball America” are RHP Ryan Castellani and INF Ryan McMahon. The Rockies, the parent club of the Double-A Eastern League Yard Goats, sets the roster and oversees all player transactions during the course of the season.

Four of the players on the team, including Castellani and McMahon, are considered among the top 30 prospects in the entire MLB farm system.

The team is starting the season on the road with a seven game trip.

The Yard Goats are scheduled to play their home opener at Dunkin’ Donuts Park on Thursday, April 13.

Here’s the complete Opening Day roster:

RHP Yency Almonte (Miami, FL)

RHP Shane Broyles (Burleson, TX)

RHP Ryan Castellani (Philadelphia, PA)

RHP James Farris (Columbus, OH)

RHP Parker French (Austin, TX)

RHP Austin House (Albuquerque, NM)

RHP D.J. Johnson (Beaverton, OR)

RHP Troy Neiman (Castaic, CA)

RHP Luis Niebla (El Fuerte, Sinaloa, MX)

RHP Luis Ramirez (Santo Domingo, DR)

RHP Konner Wade (Scottsdale, AZ)

LHP Austin Wright (Schaumburg, IL)

LHP Jack Wynkoop (Virginia Beach, VA)

C Dom Nunez (Elk Grove, CA)

C Jan Vazquez (San Lorenzo, PR)

INF Collin Ferguson (Santa Cruz, CA)

INF Josh Fuentes (Rancho Santo Margarita, CA)

INF Luis Jean (San Pedro de Macoris, DR)

INF Emerson Jimenez (Santo Domingo, DR)

INF Ryan McMahon (Yorba Linda, CA)

INF Ashley Graeter (Poplarville, MS)

OF Omar Carrizales (Maracay, VZ)

OF Dillon Thomas (Houston, TX)

OF Drew Weeks (Green Cove Springs, FL)

OF Max White (Williston, FL)

Elvin Soto (C) disabled list

Individual game tickets for the Hartford Yard Goats' first season at Dunkin' Donuts Park are on sale now.

NBC Connecticut is proud to be the official television partner of the Hartford Yard Goats.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Take a Peek Inside Dunkin' Donuts Park in Hartford]]>Wed, 12 Apr 2017 18:02:54 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Stadium-thumbnail.jpg

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Sold Out for Home Opener at Dunkin' Donuts Park]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 10:47:31 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/onlin_yard_goats_1200x675_730693699898.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats are getting ready to open Dunkin' Donuts Park and if you haven't already purchased a ticket, you might be out of luck for that game.

The Yard Goats announced Tuesday that the home opener on April 13 is sold out.  Individual tickets went on sale earlier in the morning and all remaining seats for the highly-anticipated game sold out within 30 minutes.

The team says tickets are still available for the rest of opening week.  

“We continue to be humbled by the overwhelming community support for our club as we put our individual game tickets on sale,” Yard Goats General Manger Tim Restall said. “This morning’s response from our great fans shows that this city is ready for baseball to return to Hartford.”

The Yard Goats will play 70 home games at the park in downtown Hartford.  Ticket information for all other home games is available on the team's site

The team previously announced its extensive promotional schedule.

Season tickets are still available by calling 860-246-4628.  All premium section seaon tickets are sold out for 2017.

<![CDATA[Yard Goats 2017 Promotional Schedule ]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 10:55:47 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/Yard+Goats+Lockers.JPG

DayDatePromotion & SponsorTimeOpponent
ThursdayApril 13Opening Night (Dunkin' Donuts), Atlas Fireworks (Atlas Pyrovision Entertainment Group)7:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
FridayApril 14Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
SaturdayApril 152017 Yard Goats Team Poster Giveaway6:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
MondayApril 17Most Improved Student Night (Pro Health Physicians)7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
TuesdayApril 18Baseball Bingo, Most Improved Student Night (Pro Health Physicians)7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
WednesdayApril 19Most Improved Student Night (Pro Health Physicians)7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
ThursdayApril 20Yard Goats Sweatband Giveaway, Most Improved Student Night (Pro Health Physicians)7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
FridayApril 28Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
SaturdayApril 29Atlas Fireworks (John Deere), Boy Scout Night6:05 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
SundayApril 30Healthy Kids Summit (Stop & Shop), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
TuesdayMay 2Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
WednesdayMay 3Baseall in Education Day10:35 a.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
TuesdayMay 9Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
WednesdayMay 10Baseball in Education Day10:35 a.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
FridayMay 12Pink in the Park, Atlast Fireworks (ACT Group)7:30 p.m.SeaWolves (DET)
SaturdayMay 13Seat Belt Awareness Day (CT DOT), Atlas Fireworks6:05 p.m.SeaWolves (DET)
SundayMay 14Mother's Day, Yard Goat Vase Giveaway (iHeart Media), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti(1:35 p.m.SeaWolves (DET)
FridayMay 19Atlas Fireworks, Military Apperciation Night (NEOS LLC)7:05 p.m.RubberDucks (CLE)
SaturdayMay 20Atlas Fireworks6:05 p.m.RubberDucks (CLE)
SundayMay 21Chompers' Birthday Party, Yard Goats Baseball Cap Giveaway (NAPA Auto Parts), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.RubberDucks (CLE)
TuesdayMay 30Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
WednesdayMay 31Yard Goats Foam Finger Giveaway (News Radio 1410 WPOP)7:05 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
ThursdayJune 1Baseball in Education Day10:35 a.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
FridayJune 2Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
SaturdayJune 3Atlas Fireworks (Stratis Visuals)6:35 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
SundayJune 4Mascot Salt & Pepper Shakers Giveaway, Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
TuesdayJune 13Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
WednesdayJune 14Chew Chew Mascot Bobblehead Giveaway (Dunkin' Donuts)7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
ThursdayJune 15ZOOperstars National Entertainment Act7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
FridayJune 16Star Wars Night, Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
SaturdayJune 17Girl Scout Night, Atlas Fireworks (Big Y), Kids Health and Wellness Day (Big Y)6:35 p.m.Curve (PIT)
SundayJune 18Father's Day, Yard Goats Baseball Cap Giveaway (Travelers), Post Game Catch, Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)5:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
TuesdayJune 27Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Rumble Ponies (NYM)
WednesdayJune 28Yard Goat Baseball Giveaway (Hartford Healthcare)7:05 p.m.Rumble Ponies (NYM)
ThursdayJune 29Kickoff to Summer, Sunglasses Giveaway (Red Robin)7:05 p.m.Rumble Ponies (NYM)
FridayJune 30Atlas Fireworks (ConnectiCare)7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
SaturdayJuly 1Atlas Fireworks (Bob's Stores), Halloween Night6:35 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
SundayJuly 2Atlas Fireworks Independence Day Celebration6:35 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
ThursdayJuly 13Flippen Out Trampoline Pros Apperance7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
FridayJuly 14Whalers Alumni Weekend (UConn Health), Atlas Fireworks (UConn Health)7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
SaturayJuly 15Whalers Alumni Weekend (UConn Health), Whalers Alumni Apperances (UConn Health), Atlas Fireworks (Hospital for Special Care)6:35 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
SundayJuly 16Whalers Alumni Weekend (UConn Health), Whalers Alumni Poster Giveaway (UConn Health), Connecticut Children's Medical Center Game, Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
MondayJuly 17Yard Goats Baseball Cap Giveaway (Frontier Communications)7:05 p.m.Baysox (BOS)
TuesdayJuly 18Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Baysox (BOS)
WednesdayJuly 19Yard Goats Pennant Giveaway, Parks & Rec Day12:05 p.m.Baysox (BOS)
ThursdayJuly 27What If Night (NBC Connecticut), Baseball Cap Giveaway (NBC Connecticut)7:05 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
FridayJuly 28Atlas Fireworks, Christmas in July7:05 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
SaturdayJuly 29Organized Labor Night (Reid & Riege, Anthem BCBS), Atlas Fireworks (Reid & Riege, Anthem BCBS)6:35 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
SundayJuly 30Chompers Mascot Bobblehead Giveaway (CT DOT), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
TuesdayAugust 8Stike Out Cancer Night (Jefferson Radiology), Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Trenton (NYY)
WednesdayAugust 9Parks & Rec Day12:05 p.m.Trenton (NYY)
ThursdayAugust 10Human Cannonball Appearance, Princess & Pirates Night7:05 p.m.Trenton (NYY)
FridayAugust 11Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
SaturdayAugust 12Atlas Fireworks, Boy Scout Night6:35 p.m.Senators (WAS)
SundayAugust 13Yard Goats Light Switch Plate Giveaway (John Deere), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Senators (WAS)
FridayAugust 18Roberto Clemente Celebration, Atlas Fireworks, Latino Beisbol Fiesta Poster Giveaway (CT DOT)7:05 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
SaturdayAugust 19Atlas Fireworks, Faith & Family Night6:35 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
SundayAugust 20Yard Goats Baseball Cap Giveaway (The Hartford), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
MondayAugust 21Yard Goats Team Card Set Giveaway, Reading Books in Summer Night7:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
TuesdayAugust 22Baseball Bingo, Reading Books in Summer Night7:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
WednesdayAugust 23Back to School Night Lunch Bos Giveaway (Travelers)7:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
MondayAugust 28Hero Celebration Night7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
TuesdayAugust 29Baseball Bingo, Eat Well Night (Stop & Shop)7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
ThursdayAugust 31Atlas Fireworks, Fan Apperciation Day7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Yard Goats Will Name Hot Dog After Fan With Best Recipe Monthly]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 10:53:14 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Yard_Goats_Jingle_1200x675_615127107875.jpg

You could have a hot dog named after you at the new Dunkin' Donuts stadium in Hartford. 

The Yard Goats team is asking fans to send in their favorite ingredients on a footlong hot dog.

The winner with the best recipe will be added to the Yard Goats' menu at Kayem Hot Dog Cart. 

In addition, the monthly winner will be given four tickets to a game, honored at the field and given the chance to throw out a ceremonial first pitch.

To enter, click here

<![CDATA[Baseball Opening Day in Hartford Approaches]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 10:54:23 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Park-Hartford.jpg

First pitch at Dunkin' Donuts Park is a mere 58 days away.

Construction crews have been working each day to make sure the park is ready for baseball, after the entire 2016 was lost, due to construction delays and tension between the City of Hartford, and previous developer, Centerplan, which was fired last June.

“As I’ve said all along the way, until that first pitch is thrown out, I’m not waving any banners but I think they continue to make very good progress and it continues to be a good strong partnership between the city, Arch Insurance, and the contractor Whiting Turner," said Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin.

Centerplan now faces a new lawsuit from Webster Bank. In court documents, the Waterbury-based Webster alleges Centerplan has defaulted on more than $5 million in loans split between a term loan, and a construction loan specifically linked to the baseball park construction.

The ballpark was initially supposed to be ready for April 2016, but it was later delayed to May, before eventually being fired by the city.

Centerplan later sued the city for wrongful termination.

NBC Connecticut's efforts to reach Centerplan's attorney were unsuccessful.

Mayor Bronin says he's not shocked Centerplan faces a new legal fight.

“I suspect Centerplan is going to be embroiled in a number of lawsuits for a while,” he said.

The Yard Goats played the entire 2016 season the road. Team officials say they can feel the momentum building with just two months to go.

"People are talking about how excited they are for baseball to be played in Hartford," said Yard Goats General Manager Tim Restall. “As you drive by the ballpark you see a lot of construction going on. They’re wrapping things up which is great. They’re round third and heading for home.”

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Dunkin' Donuts Stadium Won't Break Even For at Least 2 Years]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 11:09:20 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Park-Hartford.jpg

Hartford Stadium Authority meeting about Dunkin' Donuts stadium meeting at City Hall said the ballpark will be ready for opening day, but they don't expect to break even financially for another two years. 

Patrick Nails, from Arch Insurance, said all major construction is complete and now, it is merely finalizing a punch list while working with city inspectors.

Already, Hartford has accepted and signed off on 60 percent of the ballpark.

"I don't foresee anything at this point that will prevent opening day from going forward," said Nails, who added, "We now believe we will be in position for full acceptance and a permanent certificate of occupancy prior to April 13, not an absolute certainty but we think we can get there and that's what we are working toward now."

Mayor Luke Bronin praised Nails and his team, along with construction company Whiting-Turner, for their work on the stadium and commitment to having it ready by opening day on April 13.

But, officials noted the realization that the stadium, and its surrounding environs, won't make money for the first two years.

Anne Goshdigian, who spoke during the public comments portion of the meeting, said, "We will be operating at a loss for the first two years and I'm going to add to that and say at least the first two years unless something happens with that ancillary development. That is our only hope for realizing any sort of financial gain from this project."

In response, Bronin stated, "Anyone who said that this was going to make money for the city of Hartford was lying to the people of Hartford or wasn't paying attention. But we inherited this. And we are going to make the best of it. And the way we make the best of it first of all is getting this done and protecting taxpayers at the same time by getting the insurance company to come in. And then next turning our attention to the development of the surrounding lots."

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Ex Ballpark Developers Seek $90M From City of Hartford ]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 10:54:56 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Park-Hartford.jpg

The former developers who were fired from the minor baseball stadium in Hartford project have filed a legal complaint against the city of Hartford and claim the city might be liable for more than $90 million associated with the ballpark project.

Centerplan Construction Company and DoNo Hartford LLC filed an amended legal complaint Wednesday that breaks down damages the organizations said they suffered because of wrongful termination of several contracts.

Centerplan and DoNo Hartford said they suffered $14 million in damages that the city has not paid and Arch Insurance, which took over construction and management of the baseball stadium, is looking to recover as much as $36,000,000.

They also added that DoNo and Centerplan might suffer $40 million in damages “because of the impact the City’s conduct has had on Centerplan’s and DoNo’s ability to construct buildings on and otherwise develop the property surrounding the ballpark”.

The developers said they had prospects for a $60 million development on one of the parcels and they were in the market to raise money to begin construction.

The ballpark was supposed to be open for the 2016 baseball season so the Hartford Yard Goats could play at home.

A new contractor has taken over construction work on the ballpark, which is now slated to open in April.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Hartford Yard Goats Hold National Anthem Auditions Saturday]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 10:52:11 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Yard+Goats+logo_1200.jpg

The Hartford Yard Goats Baseball Club will hold auditions for the National Anthem over the weekend.


Singers will try out at the Spotlight Theatres on 39 Front Street in Hartford at 9 a.m. on Saturday, according to the Hartford Yard Goats’ spokesman Jeff Dooley.


Audition slots have been filled already.


The baseball team’s home opener will be played at Dunkin’ Donuts Park on Thursday, April 13.

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats]]>
<![CDATA[Dunkin' Donuts Park Nearly Complete for Opening Day]]>Tue, 04 Apr 2017 10:49:12 -0500https://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Stadium-thumbnail1.jpg

There was a time when many in Connecticut's Capital City didn't think baseball would ever be played on Main Street.

After a year of delays, a fired developer, increased costs to city taxpayers, and a legal saga playing out in state courts, baseball is closer than ever to being played in Hartford.

Most parts of the stadium have been turned over to the city, and the Hartford Yard Goats front office has already been at work inside the newest stadium in Minor League Baseball.

Every major issue left behind by the previous developer has been rectified, and merely finishing touches are left on the $70 million taxpayer funded stadium.

"This has been exciting for all of us," said Yard Goats Assistant General Manager Mike Abramson. "We’ve had a great team that’s been here a long time working on this.”

The luxury suites on the second level are complete. Gone are exposed heating and ventilation ducts, plumbing, and drywall. The iconic Yard Goats logo is adorned to just about seemingly every spot possible, from chairs in the players' clubhouse, to fan seats, to signs on the kitchens.

City officials are excited for the stadium to finally become a reality, after the projkect faced delay after delay.

Hartford City Council President TJ Clarke said, “I think it’s great. I think it is a wonderful stadium. It’s state of the art.

When asked about the road to get to the stadium and whether city taxpayers will be happy with the park, he said, "It depends on who you ask. It’s here and we have to make it work.”

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>