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Familiar face on changed ballcub for Watertown Rams

atertown Rams manager Paul Alteri encourages his team during an exhibition game on Monday. The Rams’ Perfect Game Collegiate League season starts tonight on the road against Adirondack. Photo courtesy Amanda Morrison/Watertown Daily Times

From the Watertown Daily Times
By Chris Fitz Gerald

Paul Alteri clearly recalls one moment in particular from his last summer as manager of Watertown’s collegiate league baseball team.

Watertown sat in fourth place with about two weeks remaining in its regular season in 2003, yet Alteri’s charges won 14 of their last 15 games to finish in second place and reach the playoffs.

“That memory is very vivid in my mind,” said Alteri, who coached the then Watertown Wizards from 2001 through 2003. “We needed to win that game to play the final game of a best-of-5 series and we lost in our last at bat. As a matter of fact, my (current) assistant coach Chris Hunter (of Heuvelton) hit a ball to the right field wall and the kid from Amsterdam made a diving catch to end the game.

“We had runners on base who would have tied the game. So Chris has some redemption in mind as well.”

The goal for Alteri, who has returned to manage what is now the Watertown Rams, is to guide the team to a winning season as well as to the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League playoffs.

“It’s a broader perspective as to what success is at this level,” Alteri said. “But for me, my main priority is these players — getting them the innings they need for their colleges, but also winning.”

The Rams open their season at 7 tonight at the Adirondack Trail Blazers in Boonville and begin their home schedule at 7 on Thursday night against the Elmira Pioneers at the Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds.

To read the full story in the Watertown Daily Times, click here.



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