The Double-A Eastern League provides the greatest opportunity in minor-league baseball for New England-bred players to have the most opportunity to play closer to their origin stories.
Entering the 2019 season, 10 players from the region were spread across the 10-team league, with five alone on the Binghamton roster.
Of the three local teams, there were two locals — New Hampshire’s Jake Fishman (Sharon, Mass.) and Hartford’s Ben Bowden (Lynn, Mass.) — both left-handed relievers who took different paths along the way but arrived back around these parts on the basis of similar success rates since becoming professionals.
“It’s really nice,” Fishman said. “I’m super close to home, so my family and a bunch of friends can make it out to games. I’m right at home in the cold. I’m used to it.”