Wachusett Dirt Dawgs - FCBL

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Dirt Dawgs Front Office

John Morrison - President/Owner

While John's establishment of the Dirt Dawgs in 2011 was his first sports venture,  he brings a 20+ year track record of operating successful enterprises as the co-founder and principal owner of Fosta-Tek Optics, a leading manufacturer of polymer optics for military, safety, automotive, lighting and electronics markets, employing 150 at their Leominster headquarters. Fosta-Tek represents one of the more notable turnarounds in the region as a successor in 1991 to the local operations of the Foster Grant Company.

John’s enthusiasm for the sport of baseball dates to his upbringing in the Minneapolis suburbs rooting for the Minnesota Twins in the late 1960’s and 1970’s. As a lifelong fan, John’s highlights include being on the winning side of the 1991 World Series games 6 and 7, being at Fenway for game 5 of the 2004 championship series, and seeing his Twins favorite, Kirby Puckett, inducted into Cooperstown.  One of his most memorable Dirt Dawgs memories arose the past season when his 102 year young grandpa, MT made the journey out to Doyle Field to take in a game and scout the team.
 
John holds degrees from Middlebury College and the Tuck School at Dartmouth College; and resides in Acton, Mass. with his wife, Carolyn, and children Megan(23), Matthew(20) and Katie(18); and dogs Bella and Riley.
 
Favorite MLB Player: Kirby Puckett
Favorite Food: Any local ice cream
Favorite Song: Tessie by Dropkick Murphey's
Favorite Movie: Miracle
Favorite TV Show: Flash
Favorite Actor: Kiefer Sutherland
Favorite Quote: "And we will see you tomorrow night!" -Jack Buck 1991, Game 6
Nickname: Lefty
Super Power: Time Travel

Alex McKinnon, Baseball Operations

Alex was born and raised in Haverhill, MA but currently resides in Leominster, MA as he assists the Dirt Dawgs during the 2015 season. This is Alex's first season as a part of the FCBL and looks forward to participating in such a well organized and competitive league. He worked alongside Kevin Palladino (Marketing and Fan Experience) with the Lowell Spinners (parent team of the Nashua Silver Knights) in the 2013 season assisting in Concessions Management as well as day-to-day operations. Before starting with the Dirt Dawgs this spring, Alex spent two years as a Travel Agent with Go Blue Tours selling vacation packages to college students and hosting events in popular Mexican destinations such as Cancun and Cabo San Lucas. Also over the past few years, he has been able to have a handful of exciting travel experiences such as spending five weeks in Ireland as a counselor and leader of a study abroad program. He has also spent time visiting Italy and a handful of destinations in Mexico. Alex is currently completing his last few credits for a Bachelor's Degree in Sports Management and intends to have a long career as a baseball executive. 

 
Favorite MLB Player: Hanley Ramirez 
Favorite Food: Filet
Favorite Song: Cough Syrup/ Young The Giant 
Favorite Movie: Step Brothers    
Favorite TV Show: Parks & Recreation
Favorite Actor: Louis C.K.
Favorite Quote: "That you are here—that life exists and identity,
That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse." -Walt Whitman
Nickname: McKinnon, Al
Super Power: Communicating with Big Dave

Kevin Palladino, Marketing and Fan Experience

Kevin enters his first season with the Wachusett Dirt Dawgs as the Director of Marketing and Fan Experience.

Palladino recently graduated from Merrimack College majoring in Business Administration with a concentration in Sports Management and Marketing. At Merrimack, Palladino has served as the President of the Sports Management Club for three academic years along with the treasurer of the Best Buddies Organization for three years.

Outside of Merrimack, Palladino has completed internships with the Lowell Spinners (sister team of the Nashua Silver Knights), New England Patriots, Boston Cannons of Major League Lacrosse, New England Sports Network (NESN), XOS Digital in Wilmington, MA and the Merrimack College Athletic Department.

Palladino played on the varsity baseball team at North Andover High School for two seasons (2010-2011). He has always loved sports, especially baseball. This is his second job in baseball and he hopes to learn the daily operations of the FCBL and its organizations to one day fulfill his dream of working in a baseball league or for a professional organization.

Palladino currently resides in North Andover, MA with his parents, Maureen and Steve Palladino. He has two younger siblings, one brother Kyle and one sister Kaylee.

 
Favorite MLB Player: Jackie Robinson
Favorite Food: Pizza
Favorite Song: Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran
Favorite Movie: Billy Madison
Favorite TV Show: Friends
Favorite Actor: Adam Sandler
Favorite Quote: "Hard work pays off"
Nickname: Dino, Papa Dino
Super Power: Flight

Dave Gage, Field Manager

In Gage’s three seasons as the Southern Vt. Head Coach, the Mountaineers have re-wrote the record books. The team has fielded program bests in all three seasons including fielding .960 in 2015. Since he took over, the Mountaineers have also set program marks in stolen bases with 89 in 2014, and 87 in 2013 and 2015. The 2015 team stole the 14th most stolen bases per game in the country in Division III. His 2014 team also set a program record with a 4.86 ERA and the best batting average was achieved in 2015.

 

After inheriting a team that won nine game the Mountaineers have improved their win total each year. In 2013, Gage's squad won 11 only to be bested with 15 in 2014, and 16 in 2015. Gage has coached nine professional players. Most notably is his brother Matt, a 10th round pick for the SF Giants in the 2014 draft. In 2015, Southern Vermont College had its first player sign a professional contract when Chris Nicastro signed with the V-Cardinals. 

 

For five summers (2007-2011), Coach Gage was in charge of the Tri-County Bees 18U team. In that time, the Bees qualified for two national championships under Gage’s guidance. In 2010, Gage’s team went 31-5 and finished fourth in the National Amateur Baseball Federation World Series.

Favorite MLB Player: Bryce Harper
Favorite Food: Calzone
Favorite Song: Any country song
Favorite Movie: Big Daddy
Favorite TV Show: First Take
Favorite Actor: Adam Sandler
Favorite Quote: "Don't confuse activity with accomplishment"
Nickname: Gager
Super Power: Flight

Dave Miller, Broadcast and Media Relations Associate

(Big) Dave Miller is graduating this summer from Slippery Rock University with a B.S degree in Communication Emerging Technology & Multimedia and a minor in Sport Management. He has interned at 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh and will be bringing the live broadcasts of all the home games for the Dirt Dawgs. In his years at SRU he held a weekly radio show and TV show through the organizations 88.1 fm WSRU and WSRU-tv. When he isn't busy he likes to play Xbox, hang out with his friends or both at the same time. 
 
Favorite MLB Player: Brian Giles 
Favorite Food: Pizza
Favorite Song: I miss the misery - Halestorm
Favorite Movie: Limitless
Favorite TV Show: Family Guy
Favorite Actor: Will Ferrell 
Favorite Quote: "I'm a get got. But I'm a get mine before I get got doe." - Marshawn Lynch
Nickname: Big Dave
Super Power: Communicating with whales
 

Ethan Winter, Broadcast and Media Relations Associate

 
Ethan is a 2014 graduate of High Point University in North Carolina where he majored in Broadcast Journalism. He was the primary broadcaster for the High Point Panthers baseball team all four years at HPU and covered the ACC Baseball Tournament this past May. Last summer he worked for the Keene Swamp Bats of the NECBL as a Broadcast and Media Relations intern. Ethan resides in Northborough, Mass.
 
Favorite MLB Player: David Ortiz
Favorite Food: Pizza
Favorite Song: "Shake it off" by T-Swift
Favorite Movie: Field of Dreams
Favorite TV Show: Friday Night Lights
Favorite Actor: Marky Mark Wahlburg
Favorite Quote: "Clear Eyes Full Hearts Can't Lose!"
Nickname: Wintee, "E", "Big E"
Super Power: Teleportation

Rachel Eagleton, Marketing and Public Relations Intern

Rachel Eagleton is a junior Sports Communication major at Clemson University in South Carolina. Originally from Dudley, Massachusetts, the New England sports scene has always been a big part of her life. Her professional interests include sports journalism and social media marketing. Her personal interests include college football, singing, going to the beach, and spending time with her friends and family. Go Dirt Dawgs! 
 
 
Favorite MLB Player: David Ortiz
Favorite Food: Mac n Cheese
Favorite Song: Anything Taylor Swift
Favorite Movie: Titanic & Wizard of Oz
Favorite TV Show: Friday Night Lights
Favorite Actor: Leo DiCaprio
Favorite Quote: "As I look back on my life, I realize that every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was being redirected to something better." 
Nickname: Rach
Super Power: Mind Reading
 

Colin Green, Baseball Operations Intern

Colin a 20 year old from Worcester, MA and he is an avid baseball fan who is enthusiastic and friendly. He loves meeting new people and aspires to travel. He played baseball for 13+ years and is passionate about the sport. 
 
Favorite MLB Player: Brock Holt
Favorite Food: BBQ Ribs
Favorite Song: Lean On by Major Laser and DJ Snake
Favorite Movie: Step Brothers
Favorite TV Show: It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia/Parks n Rec
Favorite Actor: Will Ferrell
Favorite Quote: "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." - Dr.Seuss
Nickname: Greeney, Col
Super Power: Time Travel

James Rugg, Baseball Operations Intern

James Rugg is a senior at Fitchburg State University studying Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing. Born in Leominster and raised in a sports crazed home in Sterling, James dreams of working in the Marketing department of a professional team.

Favorite MLB Player: Dustin Pedroia
Favorite Food: Pizza
Favorite Song: Leave the Night On
Favorite Movie: Miracle
Favorite TV Show: Chicago PD
Favorite Actor: Johnny Depp
Favorite Quote: "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take." -Wayne Gretzky
Nickname: Jay
Super Power: Time Travel

Kyle Martin, Baseball Operations Intern

Kyle was born and raised in the small town of North Brookfield, MA. Sports have always been a big part of his life, so after high school he went on to study Sports Management at the UMass Amherst. He just finished his junior year and is excited to move on to his senior year.

Favorite MLB Player: Dustin Pedroia
Favorite Food: Chinese
Favorite Song: Strip My Mind - Red Hot Chili Peppers
Favorite Movie: The Prestige
Favorite TV Show: The Office
Favorite Actor: Mark Walhberg 
Favorite Quote: "Imposible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they've been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It's an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It's a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing." - Muhammad Ali
Nickname: K-Mart
Super Power: Flight

Stephen Marciello, Intern

Stephen Marciello is a 19 year old from Needham, MA. He is a rising sophomore at Syracuse University, studying sports management as a major. He has played and been involved with baseball since he was a little kid and hopes to work within the sport in the future.
 
Favorite MLB Player: David Ortiz
Favorite Food: Pizza
Favorite Song: Lose Yourself by Eminem
Favorite Movie: The Benchwarmers
Favorite TV Show: Psych
Favorite Actor: Adam Sandler
Favorite Quote: "The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary" - Vince Lombardi
Nickname: Steve
Superpower: Flight

Kimmie Wagner, Intern

Kimmie Wagner is from Acton, Massachusetts. She graduated from AB high school in 2012 and is currently a Junior at Costal Carolina University. She is majoring in Marketing.

Favorite MLB Player: David Ortiz
Favorite Food: Pizza
Favorite Song: On Top of the World - Imagine Dragons
Favorite Movie: The Outsiders
Favorite TV Show: Friends
Favorite Actor: Amanda Seyfried
Favorite Quote: "Be somebody who makes everybody feel like a somebody." 
Nickname: Kimmie
Super Power: Flight

Samantha Cote, Intern

Sam is a 21 year old from Worcester, MA. She is going into her senior year at Umass Amherst as a Sports Management Major. Baseball is her favorite sport, with the Red Sox being her favorite team. 
 
Favorite MLB Player: Jon Lester
Favorite Food: Sushi
Favorite Song: Firestone - Kygo
Favorite Movie: Lord of the Rings
Favorite TV Show: The Office
Favorite Actor: Jennifer Lawrence
Favorite Quote: "Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game" - Babe Ruth
Nickname: Sam
Super Power: Shapeshifting

Aidan Verre, Intern

Aidan Verre is from Newton, MA. He is a junior at the University of Delaware, and he is majoring is sport management. He has a great love for the game of baseball, and looks forward to helping with game day operations this summer with the Dirt Dawgs. He hopes to someday have a career working with a professional sports team.
 
Favorite MLB Player: Mike Napoli
Favorite Food: Ribeye steak
Favorite Song: On Top - Flume
Favorite Movie: Animal House
Favorite TV Show: Game of Thrones
Favorite Actor: Will Ferrell
Favorite Quote: "You miss 100 percent of the shots you don't take." - Wayne Gretzky 
Super Power: Invisibility