There's little doubt that Binghamton residents love their Rumble Ponies baseball. Now, everyone else knows just how hard we represent for our minor leaguers.

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A study done by Adam McCann of Wallethub ranked Binghamton as the 37th overall city for best baseball fans and third among all small cities.

This was an exciting year for Rumble Ponies fans as well. While the team didn't have much success on the field, the beauty of minor league baseball is getting to see the development of future stars right in your own backyard. That included Francisco Alvarez and Brett Baty for the Rumble Ponies this year, the two top ranked prospects in the New York Mets minor league system.

Eventually, both players got the call up to triple-A Syracuse and even had short stints with the big league club, but local fans got the first look at future superstars just as they started to become household names for Mets fans.

Baty slashed .312/.406/.544 in 89 games for the Rumble Ponies and Alvarez slashed .277/.368/.553 in 67 games.

And who could forget when future hall-of-famer Max Scherzer made a rehab start with the Rumble Ponies on his way back from an oblique injury.

And thanks to Binghamton's proximity to New York City, fans have no problem watching the stars they came to love in the minor leagues play on the biggest stage in the sport.

Such is the beauty of minor league baseball. Major League Baseball's future stars become entangled in the local communities they play in during their developmental years. They eat at the same restaurants that we do, the shop in the same places, and when they finally get their shot on the big stage, they remember all the experiences they shared with the people who call places like Binghamton their home.

So it's no surprise that Binghamton is getting recognition as one of the best baseball towns in the country.

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