Bolton Baseball History
Pre-season activities also included early steps to develop a junior baseball program. These included visits to many sports and leisure centres around Bolton looking to recruit new players.
Bolton Baseball Club began 2007 spring training still without a home. Training took place at various venues throughout Bolton until a deal could be finalised on a new field. An agreement was made in early March that would allow Bolton Baseball Club to take over use at the Markland Hill Playing fields, a field much sort after by many clubs including Bolton Baseball.
The adult program would enter the 2007 season without the services of Paul Mortimer, Paul Bridge and Aaron Davidson all played major roles in the previous years success. Phil Daft who had announced his retirement late last year soon caught the baseball bug again and made a return to the club. Bolton Baseball Club would move into the 2007 season with a new crew looking to prove itself.
April 3-5 2007
Bolton holds Baseball Easter Camp at St James’s Sports College
April 10 2007
Bolton partners with St James’s Sports College to promote Baseball
Sunday April 29
Bolton played its season opener at the newly renamed Ballpark at Stapleton Avenue against old rivals Manchester A’s.
Sunday May 6
Phil Daft made his return to the club against Humber after previously announcing his retirement from the sport. This was also the last game James Newall would play after suffering an ankle injury that would keep the 2006 rookie of the year sidelined the rest of the season. Rookie Martin Bell hit his first career home run.
Sunday May 20
Bolton earn their first win of the season, splitting a double header with Sheffield Strikers
2007 vs strikers
Sunday July 29
A mix and match team would take to the field against Premier league team Sheffield Bladerunners. This would turn out to be one of the greatest games ever played by the club. A nine-inning game played in just over two hours, which saw the lead switch hands several times. However down 8-6 in the ninth Bolton had one last chance to come back. In the bottom of the ninth Norburn hit a two run home run that ties the game, then rookie Martin Bell went deep to hit the clubs first ever walk off home run to win the game. Lee Heaton (Rookie) hit his first home run in this game.
Saturday August 4
Lee Heaton takes over as head coach of Junior Baseball as John Baxendale moves away from the Bolton area.
Sunday August 12
Bolton played its final game of the season against Halton. This was a hard fought loss but showed the improvement this club had made through the season.
Saturday August 25
The junior team chooses Bears as its new name.
Saturday September 1
Bolton Bears, the newly formed junior team played its first ever game against Manchester Saints.
Saturday September 8
The backstop is relocated from Slack lane to the Ballpark.
Saturday October 27
Members of Bolton Baseball Club dig in and start to develop the new baseball field. New additions include Home plate cut out, base cut outs and running lanes.
The Blaze struggled through the 2007 season both on and off the field. However their commitment to success paid off. The team came together and started to play great baseball at the end of the season. An end of season grant from awards for all also allows further investment in the new ballpark and further equipment for the junior program. All members of the 2007 team eagerly anticipate the start of the 2008 campaign.