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Posted: 06/24/15

Romeo-Washington-Bruce Parks and Rec's men's 37 and over teams, The Over the Hill Bunch and the Mommoni's, at home plate at Tiger Stadium after their game on June 12.

(Photo courtesy of Mark Evans)

Two Parks and Rec
teams play at Tiger Stadium

      On Friday, June 12, an epic softball game was played at the historic corner of Michigan and Trumbull.
       The Over the Hill Bunch and the Mommoni's, two teams from the Romeo Parks and Rec 37 and Over Softball League, made the trip to downtown Detroit to compete at the old Tiger Stadium. The idea to play this game was proposed last year by Romeo Police Chief Greg Paduch from the Mommoni's. Together, he and Bunch coach Mike Garbarino researched the logistics of making the event happen.
       All team members were on board, as most of the players grew up watching their favorite team on that field. Traveling in two coach busses, the teams arrived at the fields early evening and took in the sites of the city and surrounding area.
       Many friends and families, including past players from the Bunch, joined on the bus or drove down to witness this special occasion. With the stadium gone, new landmarks like the Motor City Casino set the backdrop for the playing field.
       The large flag that was once over centerfield still stands, and both teams stood at home plate while the national anthem was played. The game was played using the same dimensions of the old ballpark, with 90-foot base paths, making the game much more challenging than playing at Crystal Diamonds, which has the standard softball 60-foot base paths.
       In the end, the Mommoni's were victorious, playing "We Are The Champions" as the spectators and players walked off the field. The highlights of the game include a lead off home run from Mommoni's Anthony Bommarito, giving them the early one run lead. The only scoring for the Bunch came in the fifth, when Dennis Nagy led off with a single, then moved up to second on a solid hit from Carl Garbarino. Aaron "Air" Palumbo crushed the ball to center to score Nagy, in dramatic fashion, from second. In his only two plate appearances, Mark Evans grounded out to short and popped up to third, citing that had they been playing on the normal dimensions of a softball diamond those would have been hits. After the game the teams met for burgers and beverages at Nemo's restaurant to talk about the game and the new memories that were made.
       (Mark Evans, Mike and Julie Garbarino contributed to this article.)

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