NORTH READING — The North Reading A’s of the North Shore Baseball League have a new manager this summer as Joe Dardeno takes over for Rob DeMoura. Dardeno, who also plays first and third base, was the team’s assistant coach the past three seasons.

“We have a bunch of young players,” pointed out Dardeno, who is from North Reading. “We have been playing better lately and are starting to jell.”

The season began for the team on May 18 and the regular season ends in late July as the season is 24 games long.

On Monday night, the A’s were beaten, 7–1, by the Peabody Champions at North Reading High School. With that loss, the A’s record fell to 3–7–1.

They are, as of that defeat, in seventh place in the ten–team league. Eight of the ten teams will qualify for the playoffs.

Peabody, which is tied with the North Shore Phillies for first place in the league, scored twice in the two of the first inning and three more times in the second to go up 5-0. The then tacked on two more runs in the top of the fourth.

North Reading, which went 9–15 last year, plated its lone run in the bottom of the sixth.

Along with Dardeno, there are five other A’s who are from North Reading, Rich Giannattasio (second base), Matt DiVecchia (infielder), Mike Foley (outfielder), Jon Gravallese (infielder) and Colby Maiola (outfielder).

Anthony Capuano is the team’s leading hitter so far as he is hitting .429 (9–21). Second in batting average is Tyler Mezquita who is hitting .368.

Dardino leads the team in runs batted in with seven while Kevin Rooney is right behind him with six.

On the mound, Andrew Lessar and Anthony Lupi are both 1–1. Lessar’s earned-run average is 2.10 while Lupi’s is 3.41. In relief, Robby Sheldon has not allowed a run in 6.2 innings and he has fanned ten batters and allowed only one walk.

On Friday night at 6, the A’s host the North Shore Phillies. Sunday night at 8, they travel to Peabody High to take on the North Shore Storm. The Storm then comes to North Reading for the back of the home-and-home series on Monday night at 6.

Published in the June 25, 2015 edition