Varsity Baseball: Cranford's Coach McCaffery Earns 400th Win

Cranford High School's Coach Dennis McCaffery poses with seniors from the 2013 State Championship Baseball Team. Credits: TAPinto Photo Archive

CRANFORD,  NJ – Dennis McCaffery, head baseball coach at Cranford High School, earned his 400th win last weekend when the Cougars won a double header against West New York and Linden.

A baseball coach for 25 years, McCaffery is beloved among athletes, staff and parents. Although he’s seen an estimated 700 games and has a slew of championship titles under his belt, his biggest accomplishment is forming relationships with the students, he said.

“We deal with a lot of great athletes who are even better people,” McCaffery said. “And the community really rallies around sports. It goes beyond baseball.”

Sign Up for E-News

McCaffery’s influence spreads beyond baseball. His prior students have come back to watch the current teams play, invited him to their weddings and grew up to work with him as a member of the CHS staff. One of his former students even named his son after McCaffery.

“Obviously, it feels very good,” he said. “It’s so unique in coaching. The wins and losses take care of themselves. It’s neat to have so many kids come back. They’re very loyal to the program and it feels nice.”

He attributes his coaching style to his upbringing in Roselle Park, where he played baseball.

“I was born and raised to work hard and listen to my coaches.” McCaffery said. “The coaches coached, the parents watched and you never questioned a referee. The small community taught me how to represent myself as a student and as an athlete.”

The small-town feel of McCaffery’s upbringing is mirrored in Cranford’s own community, he said.

“I’m very lucky,” he said. “Every year presents a lot of highlights.”

Currently, the varsity baseball team is 4-2 and scheduled to play Elizabeth on Friday.

“It’s very early in the season so far,” McCaffery said. “Are goals are the same for every season – to try to win every possible championship. Any possible championship is in our reach and that’s what we work toward one game at a time.”

When asked how it felt to hit the 400-win mark, McCaffery said he didn’t even realize it happened.

“Quite honestly, I didn’t even know it was coming,” he said. “I don’t keep track of personal stats. When I hit 300, they threw a jug of water on me and I didn’t know why.”

He focuses more on working hard, he said.

“The CHS motto is to play as hard as you can for every pitch of every inning,” McCaffery said. “I tell the students to put in the maximum effort each and every day so they know they’ve given it everything they possibly could and have no regrets.”

McCaffery also thanked the staff and Cranford community for their support.

“The Cranford community is a very caring, supportive community that allows coaches to win just because of the quality of the kids and the support of the town,” he said. “You always have a shot to win in Cranford.”


TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Fallout Continues from Lawsuit Against Mountainside; Police Chief on Administrative Leave

May 21, 2018

MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ – Police Chief Allan Attanasio is the latest member of the police department to suffer repercussions from a complaint filed against the borough on May 11.  Attanasio, who is not named as a defendant in the lawsuit, was “placed on administrative leave,” on Thursday by Borough Administrator and former Police Chief James Debbie, said  Lt. Joseph ...

Lawson-Muhammad Apologizes For 'Irrational Response' To Police Altercation; School Board President Supports Her

May 18, 2018

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ -  A day after video surfaced of her altercation with a South Orange police officer -- in which she used profanity, threatened to go to the village president and called the police chief “a skinhead cop” -- South Orange Maplewood School Board member Stephanie Lawson-Muhammad issued an apology in which she called her behavior “uncharacteristic” and ...

Kids Night Out at Emma's Brick Oven

May 21, 2018

Emma's Brick Oven in Cranford is excited to announce Kid's Night Out on June 5th from 5:30 to 7:30! We will have special guests and face painting available for the kids to spend time with their friends and family. Come out and enjoy the fun!



Cranford Police Blotter: Disorderly Conduct Arrest & More

May 16, 2018

The information provided does not represent the total scope of police activity. Individuals charged as a result of police investigations are merely an accusation. All defendants should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

1. 05/08/2018 4:10 p.m.

Myrtle Street and Baltimore Avenue

Arrested: Keyne Dasilva, 21, South Amboy

Arrested by: Ptl. Christopher Gross

Charges: Possession ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, May 23, 7:00 PM

The Cranford Hotel (sponsored by Calvary Lutheran Church), Cranford

Beer & Bible

Religions And Spirituality

Fri, June 1, 8:00 AM

Royce Brook Golf Club, Hillsborough Township

Liam's Room 5th Annual Charity Golf Outing

Giving Back Sports


Fri, June 1, 5:00 PM

Cranford Elks, Cranford

Spaghetti Dinner and Tricky Tray to Benefit Relay ...

Food & Drink

'Turning Off the Morning News' brings comic twist

‘Turning Off the Morning News’ tackles today’s issues with a comic twist

By Liz Keill

PRINCETON, N J – Despite the late night comics, no one quite captures the insanity of the political/social status world like Christopher Durang.

His latest play, “Turning off the Morning News” hit the ground running.  John Pankow as Jimmy addresses the audience, ...

'To Kill a Mockingbird' Sustains Timeless Appeal

SUMMIT, NJ – The Summit Playhouse provides a stellar production of a much loved classic, “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

The Harper Lee novel, later a Gregory Peck film and now a stage production, retains all the warmth, intensity and integrity that made it such an appealing hit in the 1960s. And there will be a new production on Broadway in December with a script by Aaron Sorkin ...

'The Sting' with Harry Connick Jr. Slithers and Shakes at Paper Mill

MILLBURN, NJ – In a premiere production of “The Sting,” Harry Connick Jr. commands the Paper Mill Playhouse stage.

Based on the sensational Paul Newman/Robert Redford film in 1973, the 1930s plot centers on a con game and gambling, sometimes on a train between New York and Chicago.  Scott Joplin’s music is intertwined with the show, especially “The ...

Mayor Charles Lombardo about Petro/Casale Cleanup

May 14, 2018

To my fellow Garwood residents:

While a resident has recently raised concerns about air quality at the Petro/Casale cleanup site, I assure you the developer has complied with all state and federal regulations and there are no air quality issues.  I understand the concerns about this matter, however, they need to be addressed by licensed professionals who are qualified to answer them, not ...