Date: Saturday, November 13, 1999
JOHN CASEY INDUCTED INTO PARK LEAGUE HALL OF FAME
John Casey, a 1980 graduate of Tufts University and the head baseball coach of the Jumbos since 1984, was inducted into the Boston Park League Hall of Fame on Friday night (Nov. 13) at Lantana's in Randolph.
The Boston Park League is the oldest amatuer baseball league in the country. Casey was one of its top players in the 1980s and one of its best umpires in the 1990s. He has continued his support of the league since retiring from the diamond.
Born and raised in Jamaica Plain, Casey is a 1976 graduate of the Boston Latin School. He helped found the Triple D's team which joined the Park League in 1980. In their inaugural season he helped the team advance to the league finals, where they lost in the seventh game. The team won the league championship the following season, and pitcher/outfielder John Casey was the Most Valuable Player.
During a nine-year run with Triple D's, J.P. Cubans and the DiSangio Dodgers, Casey was a Park League All-Star numerous times and was a regular in the playoffs. A member of the All-Star team that played the U.S. Olympic Team in Fenway Park in 1984, Casey was the only pitcher to throw a scoreless inning for the Park League. One of the outs he recorded was against major league veteran Will Clark.
Casey also earned accolades for his work as an umpire in the league. He was a recipient of our Dan Roberts Award for umpiring during eight years calling it as he saw 'em. As the head coach of baseball at Tufts, he's maintained his association with the league by sending over 40 Jumbo players to the Boston Park League during his 16-year tenure.
"I started a team with three friends just because we wanted to keep playing," Casey said. "We didn't expect to win. By the time I stopped playing, I had a lot of new friends.
"It's good baseball," he continued. "It's a competitive leauge, and that's why we've sent so many kids there during my time at Tufts. I'm really proud of this honor."
In the 1990s the Tufts baseball team has won three ECAC New England Championships, earned one NCAA Tournament berth and had a player drafted professionally. The Jumbos are clearly one of the most competitive teams in New England each spring.
The program's all-time leader in coaching victories, Casey and his staff's teams have compiled a 246-187-1 record and nine post-season berths. Forty team and individual records have been broken during his tenure. The team's record in the last six seasons is 133-82-1 against a schedule that includes Division I opponents such as Boston College and Dartmouth.
Many individuals have flourished within Casey's system. Pitcher Jeff Taglienti, a two-time All-American, was selected by the hometown Boston Red Sox in the seventh round of Major League Baseball's amateur draft in June 1997. He is now one of the organization's top pitching prospects.
Casey's roots with the program are deep. He compiled a career record of 8-3 with four saves and a 3.23 earned run average and helped the Jumbos to consecutive ECAC Division II-III Tournament appearances. Also the tight end on 1979's undefeated football team, he finished his career on the gridiron with 55 receptions and eight touchdowns. He also earned a master's degree in edcuation at Tufts in May 1983.
After a year of coaching at New Hampton Prep, he returned to Tufts as a baseball and football assistant. He replaced Lee Sargent as head baseball coach in 1984, and is currently an assistant on head coach Bill Samko's football staff.
Casey is a member of New England's Division III Selection and All-Star committees, and is secretary-treasurer of the New England ntercollegiate Baseball Association. He works various baseball camps and is the Hitting Coordinator at the Mike Andrews Camp. Casey resides in Milford with his wife, Diane, and four sons.