By Steve LaMontia, Director of Communications
The Connecticut North MSBL is located in central Connecticut and began back in 1990 with only a half dozen teams in a 28+ division. Now the league has grown to a 25+ and a 35+ format and is hopeful to maintain a solid eight teams in each division going into 2017. “Back in 1990 we had about 60 guys playing and now we have around 255 or so,” said 63 year old League President Greg Schienda. “We are proud of the fact we have recently expanded to 25 and over and 35 and over divisions. We have eight teams in each and it is working great.”
The CNMSBL is also a veteran of MSBL World Series competition. “In 1991 we sent our first team to Arizona,” explained Schienda. “We didn’t know what to expect. We had a great time while going 5-1 but lost in the first round of the play-offs. Since then we have had anywhere from two to three teams traveling to Arizona each year. I continue to manage a 50+ and 55+ team each year down there and have made it to the finals and play-offs but the ring still eludes us. Last year our 55+ team lost in the finals for the jacket, as we just ran out of gas. I also play in three different divisions in the World Series and get in about 60 plate appearances in three weeks. That’s tough on this old body but I love it!”
The league is also very active in the charitable community. Throughout the years they have staged marathon games to benefit Cystic Fibrosis and Prostate Cancer research.
This is the fourth year of Greg’s presidency and he sees no reason to stop. “We split into the two divisions three years ago and expect it to stay that way for at least the next two years. As we all get older we’ll assess what we need to do while continuing to attract the younger teams, too.”
One of the reasons this long standing league has been able to stay solvent and consistent is their structure. “We established a board to distribute the work it takes to run a league and I have always been involved in the process of helping to run things,” said Schienda. “We do it together and nobody dictates. A league can’t properly run with only one person handling everything. Becoming president wasn’t a huge step because we have always done things together.”
Greg is the only member of the original 1990 league that still laces ‘em up. Now the league is an all wood bat league and has expanded to a best of three championship format at season’s end. People just aren’t interested in playing past Labor Day. “We went to two age divisions for the regular season and then expanded our playoff format and I think everyone is happy with that,” Schienda explained. “We don’t have an all-star game because there are not any open weekends during the summer. We’re all about quality and making it the best experience we can.”
If you are interested in speaking with Greg or learn about how you can become involved in the league or their MSBL World Series teams, you can e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. You can click on the league logo above to be directed to their website.