Manager Tom Vaeth and Wild Things Agree to Extension

Wednesday, December 1, 2021
By Kyle Dawson
Manager Tom Vaeth and Wild Things Agree to Extension

WASHINGTON, Pa. (December 1) - The Washington Wild Things and manager Tom Vaeth have agreed to a four-year extension that will tie Vaeth to the organization through the 2025 campaign. Vaeth is fresh off his first season as skipper of the Wild Things and aiding the efforts to win the franchise's seventh division championship and make its fourth appearance in the Frontier League Championship Series.

"I’m very pleased to have signed an extension with the Wild Things," said Vaeth. "I’m very thankful that management thought enough of the job I did last year to warrant an extension. I really enjoyed my first year and I look forward to seeing how much we can grow together as an organization over the next four years… We will work hard every year to chase that first championship."

In the end, the team came up a win shy of winning the first Frontier League title in team history, but the turnaround from a slow start was quite impressive. At the close of a long road trip that ended July 4th weekend, the team sat at 13-20 and falling away, though early, in the race for the Northeast Division behind a Sussex County Miners team that enjoyed a very strong start to the season. Washington came out of that trip with a perfect homestand that included sweeps of New Jersey and New York and on the next trip, the Things lost a pair of games to Tri-City before sweeping New Jersey. 

Vaeth and the Things continued to battle, earning another 6-0 homestand not too long after that. Things held steady through July as the Wild Things ate away at Sussex County's first-place lead. They'd eventually take over the top spot in the division before a highly anticipated series at Sussex County in early September. It was a four-game series that would decide the frontrunner in the final six games of the year, and Washington entered the series with a 1.5 game lead. After sweeping the series, 4-0, Washington earned the division title in New Jersey.

The team fell behind 1-0 against Équipe Québec in the FLDS before walking off game 2 at Wild Things Park. An Équipe Québec victory in game three put the Things' backs against the walls, but a strong pitching performance from Alex Boshers and clutch hits at the end of game four forced a game five and former big leaguer Rob Whalen dazzled to push Washington to the FLCS. The team led that series 2-1, but Schaumburg won the final two games to take the title.

"We were really appreciative of Tom’s efforts as a first-year manager and his dedication to build upon on our continued success as an organization," said vice president and general manager Tony Buccilli. "Leading the club through the challenges of a baseball season is never easy and the adversity of the group he oversaw was commendable. We look forward to Tom’s growing role in the organization and within the community during our 20th Anniversary Season and beyond."

Vaeth and the Things begin the 2022 season at home against the New York Boulders May 13. After 18 years as the hitting coach for the Winnipeg Goldeyes, many other opportunities and his first season as a professional baseball manager, Vaeth will continue to push to bring Washington its first championship. Season tickets are available now by calling 724-250-9555 or by stopping at the box office.