Sox scout takes role as bullpen coach
FORT MYERS, Fla. — Dana LeVangie estimates he has averaged 200 nights on the road each of the last seven years as a Major League advance scout for the Boston Red Sox.
The former Whitman-Hanson Regional High three-sport athlete will not be packing his bags as frequently this season, his first as the bullpen coach for the Sox.
“It’s going to be a nice change in a couple of ways,’’ said LeVangie, who was selected by the Red Sox in the 14th round of the 1991 June draft out of American International College in Springfield, where he earned Division 2 All-American honors as a hard-hitting catcher.
“It’s great to put the uniform on again and I’m looking forward to spending more time at home with my wife, Traci, our children, Liam and Avery.’’
Following the unexpected departure of former bullpen coach Gary Tuck in January, new Red Sox manager John Farrell called LeVangie and offered him the position.
It wasn’t the first time his career path had taken an unanticipated turn.
“[In 1996] I had broken the hamate bone in my left wrist but returned briefly to the Pawtucket Red Sox. I talked to the Red Sox about my future in the off-season,’’ he recalled.
“I was told that they planned on my catching at the AA or AAA level and I was feeling pretty good about the situation.’’
His plans changed two weeks after the conversation. “I was asked to be the bullpen catcher by our minor league coordinator, Bob Schaefer. It was a full-time gig and I would be traveling with the team,’’ said the East Bridgewater resident.
“It was the push that eventually led me in the direction of scouting and coaching.”
LeVangie, the Sox’ bullpen catcher from 1997-2004, said every day in spring training is a learning experience.
“I help out the relievers during games, I’m also a catching instructor and because of my background in advance scouting, I’ll be called upon to share some of my past observations or things I see on video,’’ he said.
He said working with the five catchers in Major League camp and with Farrell and pitching coach Juan Nieves is a work in progress.
“After all,’’ he said. “I was on the road for long periods of time the last few years and for the most part only had to worry about myself and the reports I turned in.’’
He views baseball as the great equalizer.
“No matter what shape or size you are, whether you’re big or small in stature,’’ said LeVangie, a member of the halls of fame at both AIC and the Northeast-10 Conference. “Everybody has the opportunity to excel and if you play with heart and passion, you have an even better chance.
“Personally, I try not to take anything for granted. For as long a time as I can spend in baseball and with the Red Sox I’ll do whatever it takes to succeed no matter what the job.’’
Bentley grad named to tribute team
Terry Carleton, who led the 1975 Bentley men’s soccer team to its only NCAA Division 2 tournament appearance and who is a former chairman of the university’s board of trustees, has been named to that division’s 40th Anniversary Tribute Team.
One female and one male were chosen from each of D-2’s 23 conferences along with two at-large selections. Carleton, now a financial adviser with UPS Private Wealth Management, was selected from the Northeast-10 Conference.
A graduate of Walpole High, Carleton finished his Bentley soccer career with 32 goals and 20 assists. His 84 points rank fourth in program history. He also holds Bentley records for points and goals in a game.
In 1977 he received the prestigious Edward J. Powers Award as Bentley’s outstanding senior scholar athlete. He was inducted into the university’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 1986.
“Terry has helped create a spirited and engaged campus here at Bentley for many years,’’ said university president Gloria Larson. “He has illustrated to our students how to give back in meaningful ways.’’
Others selected to the Tribute Team include Patriots running back Danny Woodhead (Chadron State), Houston Astros owner James Crane (Central Missouri), Olympian Edwin Moses (Morehouse) and Michigan State basketball coach Tom Izzo (Northern Michigan).
Sharry a slam dunk
Braintree’s Ryan Sharry, the former BC High and Middlebury College basketball star, is having a standout rookie pro season with T71 Dudelange in Luxembourg’s Diekirch League, the country’s top division.
The 6-foot-9 forward was recently named Eurobasket.com Player of the Week after a 31-point, 16-rebound performance that helped his team defeat Amicale, 94-74.
Sharry, the New England Small College Athletic Conference’s Player of the Year last winter, was averaging 19.2 points and 11.8 rebounds through 23 games.
Here and there
Bates College women’s basketball player Meredith Kelly of Cohasset, who broke her toe the week before the season, came back to play 16 games and averaged 12.5 points, 4.7 rebounds, 1.9 assists, and 1.5 steals. The junior guard, named a cocaptain for next season, ranked third in the NESCAC in field goal percentage (47.8 percent). Bates was 12-12 and advanced to the NESCAC quarterfinals. . . .
Middlebury College senior captain Jay Dolan of Wareham has been named to the All-NESCAC team for men’s squash. The Deerfield Academy graduate helped lead the Panthers to a 15-8 record and fourth place in the conference. . . .
The Randolph High football program and head coach Keith Ford
have been awarded a $3,000 grant from the Silvio Cella Family Foundation. The money will help improve playing conditions, increase player safety and participation, build teamwork, and help student athletes prepare for their future. Randolph was one of four schools selected statewide. The award memorializes Cella, the former Revere High football coach and athletic director. . . .
Eastern Nazarene sophomore Kori Sorenson of Quincy hurled a seven-inning, four-hit shutout (3-0) over Regis while striking out five batters. She was named Commonwealth Coast Conference Softball Pitcher of the Week. . . .
Braintree High coach Rich Ellis was scheduled to make a plea to the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association Thursday morning to recognize boys’ gymnastics as an official sport. Because of inclement weather, the board of directors instead held a conference call with members. The next board meeting is May 1.