Mariners 5, Whitecaps 0: After Harwich's 7-2 late-night win over Brewster in Game 1 on Wednesday and a rainout Thursday, the Mariners were all business Friday night, completing a sweep of the Whitecaps in the best-of-three Cape Cod Baseball League East Division semifinal playoffs, presented by Rockland Trust.
Harwich advances to the best-of-three East championship series against the winner of Saturday's Game 3 between the Orleans Firebirds and Y-D Red Sox. That game is slated for 7 p.m. at Eldredge Park in Orleans.
All-star catcher Anthony Hermelyn (Oklahoma) summed it up best, saying, “It’s good to finally get those guys out of the way. We fought the rain and the bad weather for a little bit there too, but we got the sweep.”
It was an even further depleted roster Friday for the Whitecaps, who lost two additional players since Wednesday and only 12 players. It showed, as Harwich starter Michael Boyle (Radford) mowed through the Brewster lineup. Boyle gave up just two hits and a walk over six shutout innings. He struck out eight and retired the first seven batters he faced. In the first six innings, the Whitecaps were sent down in order three times and had a man advance past first base just once.
Boyle did not receive much run support while on the mound, and he left the game with just a 1-0 lead. The Mariners left the bases loaded three times and scored their first run of the game on a wild pitch.
After seven innings and just one run on 10 hits, Harwich finally extended its lead. Ian Happ (Cincinnati) hit a two-run double in the eighth to score Joe McCarthy (Virginia) and C.J. Hinojosa (Texas). Sal Annunziata (Seton Hall) singled to drive in Happ for a 4-0 advantage.
The Mariners tacked on an insurance run in the ninth on a pinch-hit double by Kyle Barrett (Kentucky) and subsequent sacrifice fly. Overall, Harwich had four multi-hit players and combined for 14 hits.
The newly added A.J. Ryan (Dayton) was the only Brewster player with multiple hits, accounting for two of the the Whitecaps’ five total hits. Brewster had only one multi-hit inning, the seventh frame, which was its first reprieve from Boyle after he was replaced by Jonathan Frebis (Middle Tennessee State).
McCarthy went 4-for-5 with three singles and a double and also a run scored, while Happ had two hits, a run and two RBIs. Annunziata finished with two hits and an RBI, and Kenny Towns (Virginia) had two hits and scored a run.
The regular-season East Division champs now look forward to a battle with either Orleans, which beat the Mariners more than any other team in the league this season, or Y-D, which was the hottest team in the Cape League during the final month of the season.
“We look forward to playing a good Y-D team or Orleans team," Hermelynsaid. "(Orleans) beat us four times this year so we have a little bad blood there. I’m just looking to beat either one.”
Either scenario, Hermelyn is confident in the Mariners' ability to do take care of business. “I think we definitely have what it takes.”