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B-Mets find brotherhood in faith

BINGHAMTON -- We all know about athlete superstitions, rituals and the like. For the B-Mets, about a dozen players also focus on religion each week. They meet with a chaplain to discuss life and God in Baseball Chapel.

It doesn't look anything like a church, but on Sundays NYSEG Stadium becomes a place of worship.

"We sit down as men and we talk about life issues. Were there to encourage each other, listen to each other, maybe gain some wisdom," says chaplain Tom O'Connor.

The wisdom comes from players with varying ideas, but that is what Blake Forsythe loves so much about chapel.

The B-Mets catcher offers, "Having that word, just having that accessibility. Having so many different views and perspectives and trying to bring them all into one."

In addition to their group worship, the B-Mets learn important life lessons on Sundays as well.

"We teach, even in our chapel services, focusing on life in the moment each day. Just being aware of the situations were involved in," O'Connor explains.

"Sunday sometimes you go and you hear the message and maybe that message clicks for you that day. Maybe its something that youve been needing," shares Forsythe.

For Mark Cohoon, his faith has changed his approach to the game.

The righty explains, "The anxiety is not there any more because I can trust in God and its really freed me a lot."

It helps Richard Lucas too.

The infielder describes his emotions, "You definitely do feel a lot better on those Sundays when you come out of chapel."

It also gives the players, who are always on the move, a little sense of home.

Blake Forsythe says, "Baseball Chapel does a great thing. Its hard for us guys to actually go visit a church."

"You feel like youre back home. Its something thats normal in your life and you can count on every Sunday," adds Lucas.

The B-Mets have a strong relationship with their chaplain.

"We go over Toms house. We eat after games if we have a day game," explains Cohoon.

That sense of family means a lot to the guys.

"Sometimes you have a lot of guys on a team who are believers and sometimes you may have just one or two. This years been really special," Cohoon says.

Lucas describes chapel, "We've got a pretty good relationship with everybody so everybody feels like they can trust each other. People open up a little bit."

That makes for a very rewarding experience.

"Favorite part of chapel? I guess the whole thing! Its a time when we all get to come together and let our guard down," expresses Lucas.

Baseball Chapel is Eastern League-wide, so players can still worship together even when they are on the road.


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