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Cape League Championship Preview

08/08/2022 11:07 PM

Article By: Michael Lane

The Cape League Championship, presented by National Grid, is set to get underway tonight in Bourne! After 44 regular season games and two rounds of playoffs, it is down to two teams. Let’s get into how they got here!

Cape League Championship:

(1) Bourne Braves vs. (1) Brewster Whitecaps
Game 1: Brewster at Bourne 6:00pm - Wednesday, August 10th
Game 2: Bourne vs. Brewster 3:30pm - Thurday, August 11th
Game 3 (If Nec.): Brewster vs. Bourne 4:00pm - Friday, August 12th

The History:
They meet again. The Bourne Braves and Brewster Whitecaps will square off in the Cape League Championship for the third time since 2017. In 2017 the Whitecaps captured the series in three games, and in 2021 they won in just two games. Should Brewster come out on top, Jamie Shevchik would join rare company, becoming just the eighth manager in league history to win three championships. The Whitecaps would also become the first team to repeat as champions since the Y-D Red Sox won three straight between 2014 and 2016. If Bourne takes home the Championship, Scott Landers would become the first manager to win it all in their first year since Kelly Nicholson (Orleans) in 2005. It would be Bourne’s first Championship since 2009 when they defeated the Cotuit Kettleers. One more interesting note on these two teams, Landers was a member of Shevchik’s coaching staff last summer as pitching coach when the Whitecaps took down the Braves. The Whitecaps took the season series 3-1.

How Brewster Got Here:
The Brewster Whitecaps opened the playoffs with a walk-off two-run home run. They haven’t slowed down since, having swept both of their series to reach the Cape League Championship. Despite entering the playoffs with the best team ERA in the East, it’s been the offense that has powered this surge from Hyannis. David Mendham is hitting .545 in the playoffs with a 1.734 OPS and two home runs. Carson Demartini might be having one of the best playoff runs in Cape League history. He finished the opening round hitting 3-8, with a walk and two RBI. He followed it up by going 5-7, with four home runs, six RBI and two walks in the Eastern Finals. In total he’s hitting .533 with four home runs, eight RBI and a 2.011 OPS. Brennen Oxford closed out the Eastern Finals with a nine-out save. He has a 1.92 ERA in the playoffs to go with a 0.44 ERA in the regular season, posing a threat to opposing teams if they’re trailing late. The Whitecaps are on an eight-game playoff winning streak dating back to last season. Shevchik has his team locked-in again looking to repeat as Cape League Champions.

How Bourne Got Here:
Bourne has been riding a hot streak that began back on July 21st. Since their game that day, the Braves have gone 12-2-1, including a 4-1 run in the playoffs. The Braves swept Hyannis in two games, both tightly contested. Sean Culkin threw 4.1 innings of scoreless relief to get the win and close out game one, helping save the Braves bullpen. Then, in game two, Ryan Fischer threw three scoreless innings to shut down a Hyannis comeback and get the save. The Braves were able to preserve Ty Cummings for the Championship. Cummings had a 0.52 ERA out of the bullpen in the regular season and will likely appear in a high-leverage spot during this series. Offensively, Chris Brito has been leading the way, hitting .333 with a .983 OPS and six RBI in the postseason. Brito’s biggest hit came in game two against Hyannis when he blasted a go-ahead three-run home run. Despite hitting just .125 so far, league MVP Matt Shaw has continued to make an impact by drawing five walks and stealing a pair of bags. Shaw has continued to give the Braves a boost in the field when they’ve needed it as well shining defensively. Scott Landers entered the postseason with the best team ERA in the league and he’s two wins away from riding that to a Cape League Championship in just his first season.