For the love of the game: Chris McDonough to return to field at Oldtime Baseball Game

Chris McDonough will return to the field after suffering a gruesome injury last year at Fenway Park. Credit: Tim Samway/Oldtime Baseball Game
Chris McDonough will return to the field after suffering a gruesome injury last year at Fenway Park. Credit: Tim Samway/Oldtime Baseball Game

Wheaton College and Weymouth native Chris McDonough was well on his way to working his way back to playing semi-professional baseball last summer, coming back from an arm injury as he was playing in the Yawkey League All-Star Game at Fenway Park. That all changed after one pitch.

As McDonough reared back to fire one into the catcher in the early innings, he suffered a complete break of the humerus bone, which connects the elbow to the shoulder. The crack was so loud, cameras at the park that day picked it up loud and clear.

Within minutes after being taken to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, he quickly realized his dream of making it back to semi-pro ball was over.

“I knew right away my arm was broken,” the 28-year-old McDonough said. “It was more of a shock that it was a pretty big injury doing something I’ve done a million times before. I was in shock for a little while. It was a shock and panic thing all at once. Then the realization that I was never going to be able to pitch again set in about half hour after I did it. It wasn’t the best feeling I’ve ever experienced, to say the least.”

McDonough set all kinds of pitching records at Wheaton and then went on to play with the Brockton Rox before being traded to a team in Kentucky in the Frontier League. After a short time there he found himself back home playing for the Al Thomas A’s of the amateur Yawkey Baseball League and after suffering an injury two years ago he was fully expecting to be back playing semi-professionally this summer.

 Now McDonough is forced to being strictly a designated hitter for those same Al Thomas A’s, but he has a new respect for the game he has always loved.

“It’s definitely a lot different,” McDonough said. “I’ve played before not pitching, but it was always in my mind that I could pitch and play the field. It’s definitely a lot less playing time, but I always have fun out here playing with a lot of good friends and my brother. I’ve definitely taken a step back and [I now] enjoy the game more.”

This Wednesday McDonough will step onto St. Peter’s Field in Cambridge, but not for the Al Thomas A’s. McDonough will be playing in the 20th Annual Oldtime Baseball Game founded by Boston Herald columnist Steve Buckley. Stories like these often go unnoticed, but Buckley brings these types of players together, along with some local young stars for a game where players feature a dazzling collection of flannel uniforms that represent virtually every era in baseball history and raise money for a different charitable organization.

This year’s game will be played as a benefit for the Scleroderma Foundation of New England. Also special to this year’s game is the return of former Boston College baseball player Peter Frates, who in 2012 was diagnosed with ALS. He made a dramatic appearance as a player in last year’s game, and has chosen to remain with the Oldtime Baseball Game as a coach with his younger brother Andrew playing.

“It’s great, I know they don’t ask everyone to play in these games,” McDonough said. “It shows the kind of guy that [Buckley] is. He is true to his word when he said I could play. I am getting a chance to DH and get an at-bat when they technically don’t have DH’s. It definitely meant a lot to me to get the call when he told me I was going to play.”

McDonough is just one of a few of the terrific stories that will be on display this Wednesday night. Fans line the foul lines in beach chairs and towels, making for a unique, and special night of baseball – one enjoyed by all and most importantly, all benefitting a worthy cause.

20th Annual Oldtime Baseball Game Wednesday, Aug.21, 2013. St. Peter’s Field, Cambridge, 7 p.m.. Admission is free. For more info, click here.

Follow Metro Boston sports writer Ryan Hannable on Twitter @Hannable84



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MTA announces service changes for Sunday

The MTA has announced service changes ahead of Sunday's People's Climate March, which will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Riders using…

Local

NYPD launches Twitter account for L train

The NYPD recently launched a Twitter handle dedicated to the L train and its riders. According to @NYPDLtrain, officers went underground Thursday morning to hand…

Local

Bushwick community space offers activists a place to…

A new Bushwick community space offers community activists to meet, create, learn and throw back a few cold ones. MayDay, located 214 Starr Street in Bushwick,…

Local

Activists gearing up for Sunday's "historic" People's Climate…

If all goes according to plan, more than 100,000 people will gather near Central Park West on Sunday morning and march through midtown to raise…

Arts

EXCLUSIVE: Backstage with Adam Jacobs at 'Aladdin' on…

Metro shadowed Adam Jacobs backstage at "Aladdin" on Broadway.

Movies

Review: Terry Gilliam's 'The Zero Theorem' is better…

Terry Gilliam's latest, "The Zero Theorem," concerns a reclusive malcontent (Christoph Waltz) struggling with the search for the meaning of life.

Music

Esperanza Spalding and a being called Emily get…

Esperanza Spalding is about to spiral off in a brand new direction that may or may include an alter ego named Emily.

Movies

Review: Bickering family dramedy 'This is Where I…

A talented cast sits Shiva in the bickering family dramedy "This is Where I Leave You," although it's more sap than yuks.

NFL

J.J. Watt poses unique challenges to struggling Giants…

Watt, arguably the best defensive player in the league, is the leader of a surprising Texans (2-0) team that has already matched last season’s win total.

NFL

Eric Decker 'unlikely to play' against Bears: Source

Jets wide receiver Eric Decker's status for Monday night’s game against the Bears is in doubt after he missed practice again Wednesday.

NFL

Preston Parker, not Odell Beckham, will replace Jerrel…

Tom Coughlin noted the next man up will be unheralded veteran Preston Parker.

NFL

NFL Week 3 full schedule (kickoff time, TV)

NFL Week 3 full schedule (kickoff time, TV)

Parenting

A sneaky way to serve kids fruits and…

"My First Juices and Smoothies" gives smoothie recipes for kids.

Style

3 things we love from Day 1 of…

The highlights from Day 1 of Milan Fashion Week.

Sex

Why don't more couples use condoms?

  Call it the “condom moment.” That’s the name the authors of a new study have given to the pivotal conversation every couple should be…

Sex

Need an idea for a first date? Here's…

Picture your idea of a nice first date. Is it dinner and a movie? A visit to an interesting museum exhibit? Instead, an expert on…