Not over yet … Brevard high school seniors get chance to play one last baseball game


Published:

Brevard County seniors, like this group from Viera High, will get to play one more time. A non-sanctioned game billed as Brevard Boys of Summer Senior Curtain Call is set to take place June 23 at 6 p.m. at the USSSA Space Coast Complex.

VIERA VOICE Carl Kotala

Brevard County senior baseball players are about to get their wish:

One last game.

The Brevard Boys of Summer Senior Curtain Call, a non-sanctioned game for the Class of 2020, is set to take place June 23 at 6 p.m. at the USSSA Space Coast Complex.

Damien McDermott, father of Viera High School senior Declan McDermott, said he first started thinking about trying to organize the game in early May, shortly after spring sports were canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“A lot of these kids …  I’ve coached them, I’ve coached against them and I’ve watched them play from T-ball up (through high school),” McDermott said. “Their season just got plucked. There are a lot of other things going on in the world, but it stinks for these kids.

“Some of them may never suit up again.”

The biggest step to making the game possible was finding a place to play. That’s where USSSA came in.

“I’m so happy USSSA is giving us the field. It’s fantastic,” McDermott said.

Less than 24 hours after the game’s announcement, 18 players from Viera, Holy Trinity, Titusville, Melbourne, Satellite, MCC, Rockledge, Cocoa and Palm Bay had already signed up. McDermott said he was hoping to get at least 30 players in total with at least one each from all Brevard County schools.

“Depending on how many kids I get, I’m probably going to run it like a showcase,” McDermott said. “We’re not keeping score. We’re going to let a certain number of batters come up per inning. That way, each pitcher can get their time in the game.”

Because the game is not sanctioned by the FHSAA or any other governing body, players will represent their schools by wearing their practice jerseys. Unlike All-Star games, rosters will not be determined by a school’s geographic location.

“Basically, what I’m going to have to do is build the teams around pitchers and catchers,” McDermott said. “Depending on how many pitchers I get and how many catchers I get, they’re going to be split.

“I probably won’t put all the Viera kids on one team. Or all the Melbourne kids. I’ll probably just mix them in. It’s not really a north-south type thing.

“It’s just a fun game. Hopefully, we can get 2-3 at-bats for each kid and an inning or two for each pitcher. I’ll know a little better next week when I have a better idea of how many kids are going to do it.”

Players and fans will be asked to practice social distancing during the game.

There will be no cost for admission.

“This is a community thing,” McDermott said. “This is for the kids. It’s not for anything else, other than getting these Brevard seniors together.”

While it’s a great opportunity for the players to take the field one last time, it will also be nice for the parents, who may or may not have gotten a chance to see their child play their final game before the sport was shut down in mid-March.

“As a dad and a coach, I was working myself up for potentially Declan’s last game he plays in a baseball uniform for the season,” McDermott said. “And then all of a sudden (the season is over). I almost didn’t go to his last game at Timber Creek (on March 12), but I went. It ended up being the last game he played.”

On June 23, McDermott’s son and all of the other members of Brevard County’s Class of 2020 will get a chance to take the field once more.

“I’m pretty excited about it,” McDermott said. “I think the kids are, too.”

Registration to take part in the game can be done by accessing the following link:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfjsQ6jXA4cqa76q2oAHuFe3WAzvpWjv8KfEiqTECAeazLJag/viewform?vc=0&c=0&w=1