Biggio back on HOF ballot
For the second straight year Long Island native Craig Biggio hopes he’ll get the necessary amount of votes to secure induction to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Biggio, a Kings Park alum, would be the second island native next to Carl Yastrzemski to gain induction to the exclusive club.
His career was a rarity in that he spent all 20 seasons with the Houston Astros.
“It would mean everything, not for myself, but for the organization, the fans and for my family,” Biggio said in an interview with the HoustonAstros.com. “That’s really the way that I looked at it. It would be an exciting thing if in early January we receive a good phone call. We’ll see what happens. You cross your fingers and hope for the best.”
Last year Biggio was 39 shy of the 427 votes needed for induction. A candidate must receive 75 percent of the vote from the members of the Baseball Writers Association of America.
The Craig Biggio File
*All-Star catcher and second baseman
*Ranks 21st all-time in hits (3,060)
*More doubles (668) than any right-handed hitter in Major League history
*Ranks 15th all-time in runs scored (1,844)
*Ranks 10th in plate appearances (12,504)
*Ranks first in hit by pitch (285) in the modern era
*Hit 291 home runs, had 1,175 RBIs, .281 career average in 2,850 games played
*No. 7 retired by Astros in 2008
Cosmos back on top with NASL Championship
Well that didn’t take long. It feels like yesterday when the Cosmos were winning championships and making headlines on Long Island.
In just their first season back in the North American Soccer League since 1985, the Cosmos won their sixth Soccer Bowl title after beating Atlanta 1-0 on a goal from Marcos Senna.
“It’s difficult for me to say exactly the goal the way it went, ” said Senna. “What I can say is that it was a moment of happiness.”
The franchise has existed for only three months, but played enough games in the fall season to qualify and beat Atlanta, who was the spring season champion.
“It’s an exciting day for sure, the New York Cosmos are back,” said coach Giovanni Savarese. “I’m very proud of the players because they accomplished great things. Tonight, winning a championship and bringing a championship back to New York is a proud moment for us.”
Now if only the franchise could release some Pele bobbleheads next season as a promotional giveaway, we’d be in business.
Hofstra alum signs with NBA D-League
Mike Moore, who played ball at Hofstra, was recently selected in the fourth round of the NBA Development League by the Erie Bayhawks, an affiliate of the New York Knicks.
Having only played two seasons in Hempstead after transferring from Fordham, Moore still finished his career ranked No. 25 overall in scoring with 1,128 points. He averaged 19.9 points per game as a senior during the 2011-2012 season, which was good enough for a national ranking of 17th in the NCAA. Moore also ranks No. 9 all-time in program history with 143 three pointers.
According to Hofstra’s Office of Athletic Communications, Moore started all 65 games he played in at the university, adding 325 rebounds, 147 assists and 87 steals.
He’s not the only Hofstra alum to play in the D-League recently. Former Pride guard Antoine Agudio, a Long Island product out of Walt Whitman High in Huntington Station, played for the Canton Charge, an affiliate of the Cleveland Cavaliers, in 2012-2013.
Hofstra’s most notable recent alums to play in the NBA are Speedy Claxton, now a special assistant to the men’s program, and Charles Jenkins, who is currently playing overseas.
Cosmos Sign Long Island Native
The New York Cosmos have signed Massapequa native Jimmy Nealis, according to a release issued by the team last week.
A product of Georgetown where he played four years and saw one appearance in the College Cup final, Nealis grew up playing for the Massapequa United Terminators and eventually at Massapequa High.
Nealis suffered an injury after being drafted by the Houston Dynamo of Major League Soccer and opted for surgery. He was released shortly after.
“Jimmy has been training with us for a few weeks now and has showed a nice work ethic,” Cosmos head coach Giovanni Savarese said in a statement. “He looks good on the field and will provide some nice depth for us at left back.”
Cosmos win NASL Fall Title
Not a bad way to start the year. The Cosmos are your North American Soccer League fall season champs and clinched a berth in the NASL Soccer Bowl after beating San Antonio, 2-1, on the road last week.
New York will play Atlanta in the Soccer Bowl at Silverbacks Park on Saturday, Nov. 9.
Stroman competes in Arizona Fall League
Former Patchogue-Medford standout Marcus Stroman is currently playing in the Arizona Fall League as a member of the Salt River Rafters.
Stroman, one of Major League Baseball’s top 100 prospects, was drafted in the first round by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2012 and spent last season with Double-A New Hampshire where he was 9-5 with a 3.30 ERA in 20 games.
Expected to pitch out of the bullpen as his professional career progresses, he is exclusively seeing relief appearances this fall. So far he’s 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA in two innings pitched.
The six-team Arizona Fall League consists of Triple-A and Double-A players from all 30 Major League teams. It provides players an extended portion of the season if they weren’t called up to the big leagues in September or for the playoffs.
Stroman missed the first month of the season as part of a 50-game suspension for using a banned substance that carried over from last season. The extra work this fall can only help his stock heading into spring training next season, where he’ll look to start at Triple-A at the very least and eventually make his big league debut.