NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – New Rochelle native and WFAN sports talk radio host Craig Carton led a team of celebrities against New Rochelle’s all-stars in the WFAN Celebrity All-Stars Softball Game to commemorate the opening of new fields at Flowers Park.
Carton captained a team of celebrities featuring his co-host Boomer Esiason, former New York Yankees Bernie Williams and Ron Bloomberg and former NBA player Wally Szczerbiak. New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson headlined the New Rochelle all-star team.
College of New Rochelle Athletic Director Harold Crocker, who coached the New Rochelle team, led Boomer and Carton on a tour of the city throughout the day.
“It’s great to come back,” said Carton, a graduate of New Rochelle High School. “It’s even better to be well-received by everyone in New Rochelle. We spent the whole day here and it brings back a lot of really great memories.
Esiason co-hosts “Boomer & Carton” on WFAN from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. each weekday. He praised the city of New Rochelle, including the “cool” New Rochelle High School, and said he enjoyed his first trip to the town.
“It’s been a long time coming,” Esiason said.
He then turned his focus to beating the New Rochelle all-stars on the field and hoped his co-host would do the same.
“Carton’s managing this team tonight. It says Team Carton (on the jerseys),” Esiason said. “So I have to do what he says. And if he says play for fun and don’t play to win because he wants to let everybody look good, then that’s the way I’ve got to do it.”
Bramson, who was classmates with Carton from kindergarten through 12th grade, presented Carton and Esiason with keys to the city before the game. Carton joked to the crowd that if someone told him six months ago he’d receive a key to the city, he would have replied that he must have “stolen it.”
Former Yankee and Westchester County resident Bernie Williams said he had “no idea” what to expect once the game started but was happy to participate in the festivities.
“It’s a good cause, you know?” Williams said. “Craig is doing a great job with this.”
Szczerbiak played in his second softball game in as many weeks on Tuesday but had not picked up a bat before that since high school. He visited New Rochelle for the first time and said he was “astounded how big it was” when he drove through town.
He also had a plan for if he got on base.
“As long as I get a pinch runner if I get a single, I’m good to go,” Szczerbiak said.
Bramson said Tuesday was a great day for the city of New Rochelle. But he was also worried about putting up a fight on the field.