Massachusetts Mad Dogs

From BR Bullpen


Based in Lynn, MA, the Massachusetts Mad Dogs were members of three different independent leagues. They began play in 1996 as an expansion team in the North Atlantic League. They dominated the NAL, going 56-21 and winning the pennant by 13 and a half games, but fell 2-0 in the best-of-3 playoffs to the Catskill Cougars. The Mad Dogs drew the most fans (52,384) and had many stars - Batting champ/All-Star 1B Doug Spofford (.380), All-Star 3B Felix Colon (.339, a league-leading 64 RBI), MVP/All-Star OF Roy Marsh (.364, second in average and the leader with 45 steals, 7 triples, 87 runs and 107 hits), All-Star pitcher Jay Murphy (12-3, 1.11, the league leader in ERA and tied for the most wins) and manager of the year George Scott.

When the NAL folded, the Mad Dogs jumped to the Northeast League and went 45-37, tying for the second half northern lead (23-17) with the Albany Diamond Dogs. Massachusetts lost in the playoffs 2 games to 1 to Albany. Scott's team drew 72,681 fans, second to Albany's 72,985. The only All-Star was Colon (.357, second in the league), though Andre Keene led the loop with 64 runs. Gardner O'Flynn (13-4, 2.85) led in wins, was second in ERA and was named pitcher of the year.

The Mad Dogs fell to 39-45 in 1998 and they were next to last in attendance (47,123). Scott's squad lacked any All-Stars. The top performer was likely 1B-OF Tony Mitchell (.348, .688 slugging). In '99, the Northeast League merged into the Northern League. Scott's club was 41-45 in a tight northern race in which they finished one game out in the first half but tied for last and were last in the second half but just 4 games back. Attendance fell to last in the Northern League's eastern division (38,528). Mo Sanford (8-4, 3.05) was fourth in the league in ERA. 2B Mike Pagana (.355) made the All-Star team while Mitchell hit .375 and slugged .795, leading the division in homers and finishing third in average.

Sources: 1997-2000 Baseball Almanacs

Year-by-Year Record[edit]

Year Record Finish Manager Playoffs
1996 56-21 1st George Scott Lost League Finals
1997 45-37 3rd George Scott Lost in 1st round
1998 39-45 5th George Scott
1999 41-45 7th George Scott