The Worcester Bravehearts announced the signing of five Central MA players who will join the team for the 2018 season. The announcements were made at St. John’s High School on Thursday, November 16 during the team’s Heart Stove Reception.
Two St. John’s alumni will return to the Bravehearts’ pitching staff when the team opens its 2018 season on May 30. Shrewsbury-resident Kendall Pomeroy looks to build on his 2017 season while Holy Cross junior Danny Barlok (pictured above on the left) returns to the team after spending last summer with the Keene Swampbats of the NECBL.
Pomeroy is a 6’4” junior right-hander at UMass-Lowell who has pitched in 34 games — all except one out of the bullpen — with the River Hawks while amassing a 5-0 record in his first two seasons. He was third on the Bravehearts with 16 appearances in 2017 and finished the season 1-1 with one save and a 5.33 ERA in 25 1/3 innings pitched. At St. John’s he pitched all four seasons and was an honor roll student in the class of 2014 before spending a year at the Loomis Chaffee School.
Barlok is ready to play another summer on the same field where he pitches in his junior season at Holy Cross. In 2016, Danny Barlok was a leader out of the bullpen for the Bravehearts and posted an impressive-2.40 ERA with three saves for a team that fell just two wins short of a championship. At Holy Cross, he pitched in 16 games out of the bullpen as a sophomore, was a member of the Patriot League championship team, and experienced the NCAA Regionals by pitching 2/3 scoreless innings against Yale on June 4th. Barlok graduated from St. John’s in 2015.
Two members of the 2017 Saint John’s baseball team that won the Super 8 Championship are going to be battery mates with the Bravehearts during the summer. Matt Stansky (pictured above on the right) of Douglas and Jack Gardner (Holden, MA) will reunite after spending 4 seasons together at St. John’s and additional time as teammates with the Shrewsbury Quaranta Post 397 American Legion baseball team that captured the Northeast Regional Championship at Hanover Insurance Park this past August.
Stansky is now a freshman pitcher at Bryant University while Gardner is a catcher at Cypress College in CA. In one of the most memorable games the pair played together, Gardner was the catcher for Stansky’s 125-pitch 10-inning masterpiece in a 3-2 victory over Michigan in Game 1 of the American Legion World Series in Shelby, NC this past August.
The Bravehearts have also re-signed infielder Mariano Ricciardi (Worcester Academy / West Boylston) of Florida Atlantic University. He debuted with the Bravehearts in 2017, hitting .248 in 33 games with 7 RBIs and 4 stolen bases while joining his brother, Dante, on the team. The freshman is a 5’7” left-handed hitting second-baseman who competed in the 2016 WWBA World Championship, where he was named to the All Tournament Team. Mariano’s father, J.P. Ricciardi, was also a member of the Heart Stove Panel on November 16th at St. John’s High School.
The Bravehearts will begin revealing the rest of the roster in December. Season tickets, flex packs, and group outings for the 2018 season are now on sale by calling the Bravehearts’ office at 508-438-3773. Opening night is Wednesday, May 30th against the defending champion Nashua Silver Knights at Hanover Insurance Park.