From the floor of Legislation to the Field of Dreams: NYS Senator Jeremy Cooney joins the Game at the Corners

From the floor of Legislation to the Field of Dreams: NYS Senator Jeremy Cooney joins the Game at the Corners

[Jeremy Cooney pitching; Joe Schaal catching; David Kramer umpiring at the Twelve Corners Middle School field; Photo: Michael Raff, 6/12/22]

Jeremy Cooney takes his job seriously.

I invited Jeremy to throw out the first pitch as part of the 23rd year of The Game. I learned that he and his Communications Associate, Miles Cunning, first went to the Harley School to loosen up. Jeremy was a little rusty, not having played since his Little League days at Cobb’s Hill. The two were successful. I was the umpire and called the first pitch a well earned strike.

Jeremy Cooney warming up [Photo: David Kramer 6/12/22]

After the pitch, we went to the Brighton Farmer’s Market where Jeremy was warmly greeted by constituents.

Brighton Farmer’s Market, Sunday June 12th. The Dempsey’s with Brighton Town Supervisor William Moehle and NYS Senator Jeremy Cooney, 6/12/22, photo David Kramer]

NYS Senator Jeremy Cooney, (D, W, 56thSD) became the fourth elected representative of the Town of Brighton — all with athletic pedigrees — to join The Game at the Corners.

In 2018, Brighton Town Councilmember Robin Wilt, who played and coached rugby, threw out the ceremonial first pitch of the season.

In 2021, Brighton Town Supervisor William Moehle, who played baseball and basketball when growing up in Michigan, threw out the ceremonial first pitch of the season and then pitched three strong innings.

In 2022, Brighton Town Council member Jason DiPonzio,  who runs marathons, shook off 18 years of rust to toss a strike when he threw out the ceremonial first pitch of the season. (SEE FULL SERIES AT END)

5/6/18. The Game at the Corners (left) Brighton Town Councilmember and then 25th State Congressional District candidate Robin Wilt [Photo: Nicholas Wilt]; (right) Robin hurling a strike to Neal Rogachefsky with Michael Raff manning second base. From Brighton Town Council Member Robin Wilt pitches in at the Game at the Corners

5/2/21 Brighton Town Supervisor William Moehle pitching at the Game at the Corners, left fielder Neal Rogachefsky, shortstop David Kramer [Photo: B. Davis] From Brighton Town Supervisor Bill “Shohei” Moehle throws out first pitch, goes two for three with 2 RBI’s in the Game at the Corners

5/1/22 Brighton Town Councilmember Jason DiPonzio preparing for the first pitch from Brighton Town Council Member Jason DiPonzio shows his stuff at the first pitch at the Game at the Corners

In The Boys and Girls of Summer complete 22nd season of the Game at the Corners. unofficial commissioner David Esan gives the history of the game:

The game has its roots in pick up games played over 40 years ago at the Hillel School. As families grew, the game disappeared. It started again 23 years ago. The theme is to have fun, and hopefully to pass the love of softball to a younger generation. All are welcome to join us. The game is every Sunday at 9:30am at the Twelve Corners Middle School softball field; players gather a little earlier to warm up. Afterwards, many enjoy a visit to the adjacent Farmer’s Market in the High School parking lot. For more info, contact me at [email protected] 

After the game, Jeremy elaborated on his own experiences with baseball and cricket.

Talker: Tell us a little about your personal and professional lives. What motivated you to run for New York State Senator?

Jeremy: I was born in India, but was raised in Rochester by a single mother. I ran for office because I think our community deserves representation in Albany focused on making a difference in the lives of children and families that call our community home. This community gave me so many opportunities, and I want to pay it forward and help build brighter futures for the next generation of Rochestarians.

Talker: What is your previous experience with softball and or baseball?

Jeremy: I played Little League growing up. Somewhat ironically, we were the “Jeremiahs” (named for our bar sponsor).

Talker: Do you have a favorite baseball team?

Jeremy: My favorite baseball team is (of course) the Rochester Red Wings! Prior to being elected to the Senate, I had a years-long streak of attending Opening Day. Of course with the Legislative Session in Albany, I haven’t been able to continue that tradition, but my wife and I still spend many summer nights at Frontier Field, which is in the district I represent!

Talker: I know you are proud of your East Asian heritage. Are you a cricket fan? If so, have you ever been to the pick up cricket matches at the Brighton High School baseball diamond?

Jeremy: I have not joined the pickup game, BUT I am very supportive of cricket in our community. Last year, we helped pass legislation to increase cricket education across New York State. I also hosted the first “Senator’s Cup,” a local cricket tournament and cultural celebration featuring teams from Rochester, Buffalo, and Albany.

4/18/21 Cricket at the Brighton High School baseball diamond. Batter dodging a thrown pitch from Cricket on the playing fields of Brighton

WEEK 2 May 8th

(l-r, t-b) Rookie D. Parker’s first at bat, N. Rogachefsky catching; rookie D. Parker’s first swing, H. Feinstein pitching; D. Parker put out at first base by C. Boyar; J. Schaal slamming D. Schmerl’s pitch, Schaal’s shot was caught by excellent outfield play; J. Feldman scoring; S. Wehs catching; B. Graff hitting D. Esan’s pitch, M. Raff catching; Feinstein bright several fine bats kept in special bags, admired by Schmerl; the game was running low on softballs. D. Kramer could not play due to back spasms. As Kramer is a recreational softball umpire, during the game, he went home to retrieve a few of the balls stowed in his garage. [Photos: David Kramer 5/8/22]

THE FULL SERIES 

2022 

Brighton Town Council Member Jason DiPonzio shows his stuff at the first pitch at the Game at the Corners

2021 Game at the Corners

Brighton Town Supervisor Bill “Shohei” Moehle throws out first pitch, goes two for three with 2 RBI’s in the Game at the Corners

The Boys and Girls of Summer complete 22nd season of the Game at the Corners.

2020 Game at the Corners (almost)

The Brighton Farmer’s Market is back. At the Game at the Corners, the boys and girls of summer hoping to play ball.

2018 Game at the Corners

Brighton Town Councilmember Robin Wilt pitches in at the Game at the Corners

2017 Game at the Corners 

Who’s on first at the Game at the Corners? The Rabbi.

2016 Game at the Corners

The Boys of Summer are back at The Corners

Ball in creek disrupts Game at the Corners; Blake hits for the cycle

Casper scores the winning run at The Corners

Umpire added to Game at the Corners. Players subtracted

Who’s counting at the Game at the Corners

Celebrating the Fourth of July at the Game at the Corners. And much more.

“Crooked Arm” Brancato brings 19th Century base ball to the Game at the Corners

First Girls of Summer at the Game at the Corners; Talker wins it with three run walk off homerun

Farewell Boys and Girls of Summer! Under-40 MVP smashes 5 home runs off Over-40 MVP in Sunday finale

2015 Game at the Corners

At Young Woman’s College Prep, Brad Rosenbaum aiming to hit 1.000

Pick up softball games still exist

Opinion Page, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, June 2015.

About The Author

dkramer3@naz.edu

Welcome to Talker of the Town! My name is David Kramer. I have a Ph.D in English and teach at Keuka College. I am a former and still active Fellow at the Nazareth College Center for Public History and a Storyteller in Residence at the SmallMatters Institute. Over the years, I have taught at Monroe Community College, the Rochester Institute of Technology and St. John Fisher College. I have published numerous Guest Essays, Letters, Book Reviews and Opinion pieces in The New York Times, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, the Buffalo News, the Rochester Patriot, the Providence Journal, the Providence Business News, the Brown Alumni Magazine, the New London Day, the Boston Herald, the Messenger Post Newspapers, the Wedge, the Empty Closet, the CITY, Lake Affect Magazine and Brighton Connections. My poetry appears in The Criterion: An International Journal in English and Rundenalia and my academic writing in War, Literature and the Arts and Twentieth Century Literary Criticism. Starting in February 2013, I wrote for three Democratic and Chronicle  blogs, "Make City Schools Better," "Unite Rochester," and the "Editorial Board." When my tenure at the D & C  ended, I wanted to continue conversations first begun there. And start new ones.  So we created this new space, Talker of the Town, where all are invited to join. I don’t like to say these posts are “mine.” Very few of them are the sole product of my sometimes overheated imagination. Instead, I call them partnerships and collaborations. Or as they say in education, “peer group work.” Talker of the Town might better be Talkers of the Town. The blog won’t thrive without your leads, text, pictures, ideas, facebook shares, tweets, comments and criticisms.

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