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LI Ducks Add Former MLB Lefty

Gustavo Chacin signs with the Flock

On March 26, the Long Island Ducks announced the signing of pitcher Gustavo Chacin. The former Major Leaguer begins his first season in the Atlantic League and 14th in professional baseball.

“Gustavo brings a tremendous amount of Major League experience to our rotation,” says Ducks President/General Manager Michael Pfaff. “We are excited to see him on the mound this season.”

Chacin joins the Ducks having spent parts of five seasons in the big leagues with the Toronto Blue Jays and Houston Astros. He made his Major League debut on Sept. 20, 2004 at Yankee Stadium, tossing seven innings and earning the win in a 6-3 victory over the Yankees. The left-hander’s best year came in 2005 with Toronto when he went 13-9 with a 3.72 ERA and 121 strikeouts in 34 games (all starts), earning a fifth place finish in the American League Rookie of the Year voting. Overall, the 31-year-old has a 27-17 record with a 4.23 ERA and 216 strikeouts in 102 Major League contests (58 starts).

The Venezuela native is a veteran of 259 minor league games (150 starts) and has a 65-53 career record with a 4.23 ERA. His best season came in 2004 when he combined to go 18-2 with a 2.82 ERA in 27 games (all starts) with Double-A New Hampshire and Triple-A Syracuse, earning his first Major League call-up. That season, he was named Eastern League Pitcher of the Year and Toronto Blue Jays Minor League Player of the Year. Chacin was originally signed by the Blue Jays as an undrafted free agent in 1998.

The Long Island Ducks are members of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball and play their home games at Bethpage Ballpark. Opening Day is May 4. For further information, call (631) 940-DUCK or visit www.liducks.com.

News

The recent adoption the Common Core Learning Standards, a rigorous series of teacher and student assessment testing, and the potential sharing of confidential student information with third parties have resulted in a radical change in the educational landscape in New York State—one that many parents have been concerned about.

To address these growing concerns, the Great Neck School District’s United Parent Teacher Council recently hosted a question and answer session at South High School with New York State Regent Roger Tilles, a Great Neck resident who has been outspoken with both his support of content the Common Core and his disapproval in how the new set of learning standards have been implemented.

At a meeting last week, after almost four hours of back and forth between Clover Drive residents, the attorney representing builder Frank Lalazarian’s controversial Old Mill II project and members of the Village of Great Neck’s Planning Board, there was very little progress, no vote taken and far more questions than answers.

The subdivision plan, a project under discussion for the last five years and recently approved by the village’s Zoning Board of Appeals, calls for 11 houses to be built in the area behind the Old Mill Apartments, with sole access from Clover Drive. Complicating the builder’s efforts to gain approval to start building is the fact that one of the lots is within the boundaries of Great Neck Estates and will require that village’s approval also.  Additionally, Lalazarian’s project must gain the approval of several Nassau County agencies, including its department of public works, department of health and planning commission.


Sports

The Bears team before a recent game at the Andrew Stergiopoulos Ice Rink with Coach Dan Marsella.

Great Neck’s Ayal Hod is the proud coach of Great Neck’s winning Top Gun sixth grade team in the Island Garden Fall League. Hod puts together the team every season, mixing local youngsters from Great Neck and children son Dillon’s AAU Jamaica Queens team. The league is very competitive and challenging and it teaches the children many valuable lessons: “how to be great teammates by sharing the ball, how to compete hard on every possession and what you put in is what you get out.”

Hod says that the main challenge is for every child to bring their individual talent to the team and collectively they have something special. an ex-player, he says that “basketball was very good to me, it helped pay my college education and it  paid my-bills for many years to come via several basketball commercials ... basketball also opened many doors for me and it helped me tremendously in my business career.”

Hod enjoys sharing his basketball journey background with his son and his friends and having them learn lessons too.


Calendar

Park District Swim

Saturday, Dec. 7

Board of Education Meeting

Monday, Dec. 9

Peter Max Exhibit Presentation

Tuesday, December 10



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
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