"All of us have goals to make it in some big school somewhere else," says Jason Lewis, the wiry Bridgeport second baseman. "For me, it will be the Air Force Academy or Notre Dame. You know, with the mills shut down, there's not a whole lot for a young guy to look forward to here. Oh, I know we've got a lot of tradition here. I think everybody in the whole school has an autograph from the Niekros. But what I'm going to do is try to make it out of the Valley just like they did."
He bangs a fist into his glove and heads back out to the frigid diamond. "I don't look down on it here, though," he says. "This is where I'm from." He pauses at the doorway. "And I'm sure that 20 years ago this was a real nice place to live."