Port Richmond: Tigers Baseball is a Family Tradition

Joe Lamb of the Tigers waited at first base after hitting a single.

Saturday afternoons during the summer at the baseball field of Samuel Recreation Center have been the same for generations. Many families with young sons in the community come out to see their kids compete against other neighborhood teams in Little League games.

The Tigers team has some motivation to play hard when they look at the mural painted on the side of the rec center depicting three Port Richmond natives who made it to the minor and major leagues. Vince “Lefty” Gohl of the Philadelphia Athletics, Thomas Bonk of the Boston Red Sox and Ed “Marko” Markowski of the Washington Senators minor team look out over the baseball diamond where the boys play.

On Saturday afternoon, the under-9 team for the Port Richmond Tigers went up to bat against the Lansing Knights surrounded by cheering families. The Tigers  lost 6-4 when time ran out at 2 p.m. The games for little league last for six innings or two hours, whichever comes first.

Despite the loss in a game approaching playoffs, the boys on the Tigers team and their families really just love spending the day at a baseball game.

“Oh, everybody shows up. Joe enjoys being with his friends and the coaches do a good job with the kids,” said Joe Lamb, father of 9-year-old Tigers left-fielder Joe Lamb Jr.

Baseball isn’t the only sport kids in Port Richmond are involved in. Lamb said his son also plays basketball at the Rizzo Police Athletic League on Clearfield Street and club soccer as well.

Keghan Nast is the unofficial Tigers mascot and a future team member.

The father-son tradition of playing Port Richmond youth sports is evident in the Lamb family.

“I played here when I was a kid. There was basketball inside the rec center,” Lamb said. “Joe’s little brother Gavin plays T-Ball too.”

The Nast family is another heavily represented group in Port Richmond sports teams.

Middle son, 8-year-old Bryce, is the Tigers’ pitcher. He also plays travel soccer, travel basketball and wrestles at the Rizzo PAL. His older brother Jarett played for the little league Tigers and is now on the older teams in the neighborhood and at school. Two-and-a-half year old Keghan Nast is the Tigers’ mascot and comes to every game with his dad and brothers.

Girls in Port Richmond have their own leagues in soccer, basketball, softball and other sports at the PAL and their schools. Lamb said the really young kids usually have co-ed teams before splitting by gender as they get older.

Even if some parents put their kids in the youth sports teams to keep them out of trouble and give them something to do, it’s clear that the boys and girls of Port Richmond love to participate in the games with their friends year after year.


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