Stalman not on the fence about being a Silver Knight
NASHUA – How anxious are most of the Nashua Silver Knights players who have been trickling in from all over this week to get going?
Consider the enthusiasm of Lucas Stalman, who will be a junior at Boston College this fall. He left his Bedford Hills, N.Y.home – about 35-40 minutes outside New York City, in the Weschester area – at 6:30 a.m.on Thursday to get to Nashua in time.
Once here around 10, Stalman pulled up beside a car on Broad Street, getting off the exit, and asked where Holman Stadium was. The other driver happened to be a Silver Knights season ticket holder and said he would lead him to the stadium, which he did.
The Eagles’ utility infielder was so anxious to report on time – he was about two minutes late – that he began climbing the fence to get in, unaware all he had to do was go in through the gate by the team offices.
“I wanted to get up early and get here on time, and get to know the guys,” he said. “I’m five minutes late, I’m trying to see, none of the gates are open as I’m walking down. I don’t know where the entrance is, I figured I’d jump the gate, I’d be in in a few seconds. Quicker than finding an entrance, I thought.”
In any event, Stalman’s guide saw him climbing the fence and directed him to where the gate was.
“Hey, you don’t want to be late,” Silver Knights manager Kyle Jackson said with a chuckle. “That’s funny. He told me he wouldn’t be here Monday or Tuesday but would be here Thursday.”
Being at B.C. for a couple of years, Stalman says he knows New England well enough but had never been to Nashua before.;
Also from Empire State
Ironically, there’s another player on the Knights who drove up from the New York area (Greenwood Lake) earlier in the week , Max Viera. The middle infielder who can also play third is headed to Northeastern as a freshman in the fall, actually played the equivalent of his high school senior year at a prep school in Georgia.
“I’m used to being away from home, so I think I’ll be good in that transition,” he said. “I’m really excited to get going, it’s a beautiful stadium. … I’m really exciting to get going. … I think I belong here, I’m ready to go.”
There are morning workouts set for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and by the end of Sunday, Jackson said, the entire squad should be here.
The big day will be Monday, which will feature a Media Day but also COVID-19 testing for all the players. City health officials will be on hand and will also meet with the players as a group, along with team officials, to go over all the protocols. Some of those protocols will include wearing masks upon entering the ballpark, and also temperature checks at that time as well.
The Silver Knights will then scrimmage Worcester at Holman on Tuesday, at a time that hasn’t been determined yet.
“We don’t know what the protocols are for bringing a team in, so we need to go over all of that, and find out what time is good,” Jackson said.
In fact, visiting teams will also have to get temperature checked over by the gate to the visitors clubhouse, Jackson said. Interns will be in place to perform that task.
“I’m sure it’s going to be the same way at all the ballparks,” Jackson said.
Wednesday the team will take full batting practice in the afternoon, Jackson said.
Right now, Jackson has no idea of who he’ll tab to start on the mound Opening Night next Thursday. About 13 pitchers have thrown bullpens since Monday. “I know certain kids I want to have start,” Jackson said. “But I need to see who’s ready to go.”
Jackson said the plan for the first few games is each pitcher, since they haven’t thrown competitively in months, has a max of nine batters. “Once you’ve faced nine hitters, you’re out,” he said.
In the scrimmage vs.Worcester Tuesday, no pitcher will throw more than 25 pitches, Jackson said, and there will be an ‘L’ screen in front of the mound to guard against injury.