FROM THE DESK OF THE MAYOR: Little League Plans to Expand Tournament
Letter to the editor submitted by Mayor Michael Fressola
The following is a letter submitted by Manchester Mayor Michael Fressola:
Dear Manchester Residents,
I am happy to report more good news from the Manchester Township Little League. Manchester Little League is a part of District 18 which includes the Little Leagues of Barnegat, Beachwood, Berkeley, Stafford, Brick, Jackson, Holbrook, Lakewood and both Toms River leagues. At the end of June every year, Little League District All-Star teams all over the country, including Manchester, commence their quest to reach the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pa. In addition, Manchester runs the M.I.T. Tournament.
Since 2009, Manchester Township Little League has hosted the Mason Invitational Tournament each July. It is called the MIT for short. The MIT is named after Gary Mason. He was a league coach and board member, who dedicated himself to Manchester Little League, and also to District 18, as an administrator.
Gary Mason was always looking to make sure that kids of all ability levels played baseball and more of it. Year in and year out, many players do not make the District All-Star teams who are very capable, but get caught up in a numbers crunch. The MIT is for these players. The MIT tournament teams are made up of players who were not selected to any District 18 All-Star team. This tournament allows these players to play more baseball in a fun and meaningful tournament atmosphere. For the past four years only District 18 teams could participate.
With Joe Carter Stadium as the jewel, Manchester is looking to expand the extremely successful MIT. Rave reviews of past tournaments by out of town participants have encouraged them to offer this great experience to as many little leaguers as possible.
In 2013, Manchester’s MIT tournament will include District 11, lower Monmouth County, and have a Shore championship. In 2014, they are planning to expand the MIT even further, hoping to include areas like upper Monmouth County, Trenton and Clark. Manchester league officials believe that by 2015, they will be able to expand statewide and offer the experience of the MIT tournament to all 307 Little Leagues from Warren County to Cape May!
Manchester’s MIT is a tournament that players and parents truly enjoy. Manchester Little League’s Joe Carter Stadium is a field that little leaguers from all over will want to play on! The left field wall resembles Fenway Park’s "green monster." The right field wall resembles Wrigley Field’s brick wall minus the ivy. Centerfield is modeled after Yankee Stadium’s famous facade, complete with Manchester’s own Monument Park. Manchester’s Joe Carter Stadium and MIT tournament are perfect together and will attract teams from all over.