The Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame has announced that Dick Berardino, former coach with the 1968-1970 Jamestown Falcons baseball team, will be the keynote speaker at the Hugh Bedient Centennial Banquet set for Oct. 20 at the Robert H. Jackson Center in Jamestown.
Berardino, a Cambridge, Mass., native, is currently a player development consultant for the Boston Red Sox. A former outfielder and longtime manager in minor league baseball, he also spent three years (198991) as a coach with the Red Sox.
A three-sport star at Watertown (Mass.) High School, Berardino graduated from Holy Cross in 1959 after leading the Crusaders to the 1958 NCAA District One baseball championship. He signed with the New York Yankees upon graduation and batted .378 in his first professional season with the Modesto Reds of the Class C California League. He reached Triple-A for three seasons (196264), playing for the Richmond Virginians, Indianapolis Indians and Spokane Indians, but never broke through to the major league level. All told, Berardino appeared in 812 minor league games, and batted .272 with 702 hits and 70 home runs.
Dick Berardino, left, and Jackie Moore were a coach and manager, respectively, for the Jamestown Falcons during the 1968 New York-Penn League season.
P-J file photo
Berardino compiled a 753-858 record (.467) with two championships in 21 seasons (196667; 197185; 198788; 199798) as a minor league manager. Nineteen of those 21 seasons were spent in short-season leagues. Berardino managed two full-season Class A clubs, the Greensboro Hornets of the South Atlantic League in 1987 and the Lynchburg Red Sox of the Carolina League the following season.
His managing career began in the Yankee organization, where he handled Rookie-level clubs in the Gulf Coast and Appalachian leagues. In 1968 Berardino joined the Red Sox organization as a minor league coach in Jamestown. This year marks his 45th consecutive year with Boston. From 1971 through 1985 he spent 15 consecutive seasons as the manager of the Red Sox' Short Season Class A New York-Penn League farm clubs, the Williamsport Red Sox and the Elmira Pioneers/Red Sox/Suns. He returned to the NY-P League a dozen years later, in 1997-98, as manager of the Lowell Spinners.
In addition to his minor league managerial and coaching assignments, and his three years as bullpen and third-base coach on the staff of Joe Morgan in Boston, he also has served the Red Sox as field coordinator and assistant field coordinator of minor league instruction and roving outfield and baserunning coach.
Berardino has been inducted into five different Hall of Fames the Watertown (Mass.) Hall of Fame, the Holy Cross Hall of Fame, the Massachusetts State Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame, and the Elmira Hall of Fame and, most recently in 2008, became a member of the National Italian-American Hall of Fame.
The banquet will honor Bedient, a Falconer native, who as a rookie pitcher for the 1912 Boston Red Sox, compiled a sterling 20-9 record while leading his team to the World Series title. In the World Series, Bedient was magnificent, pitching 18 innings in four games with an 0.50 earned run average.
The Hugh Bedient Centennial Banquet will closely replicate a similar banquet that was held 100 years ago. Bedient was welcomed back to his hometown with a parade witnessed by more than 25,000 proud Chautauqua County residents and was feted with a reception and banquet on Oct. 22, 1912. The event was held at the Odd Fellows Lodge on Main Street in Falconer.
A highlight of the Hugh Bedient Centennial Banquet will be the presentation of the Society for American Baseball Research 1912 American League Rookie of the Year Award to the grandchildren of Bedient.
The master of ceremonies for the event will be baseball historian Greg Peterson, who will present a video he has made about Bedient.
Dinner will be provided by Vicki McGraw of Elegant Edibles Catering, who is planning a similar menu to that of the original 1912 banquet.
A cocktail hour hosted by the Hugh Bedient Celebration Committee will begin at 6 p.m., with the banquet to follow at 7 p.m.
Tickets to the banquet are priced at $30 and are available by calling Russell E. Diethrick Jr. at 665-2265, Sam Ognibene at 450-0663, or Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame president Randy Anderson at 640-6219.