04/12/2022 1:15 PM
Article By: Kaley Brown
This past weekend marked the first series of the 2022 Major League Baseball (MLB) season. Countless Cape Cod Baseball League (CCBL) alums took to the diamond and carried out memorable Opening Weekend performances. Let’s take a look at some of the former Cape Leaguers and what they accomplished to kick off the brand new season:
Starting with pitching performances, a number of CCBL alumni hurled stellar appearances as high-rotation members of their team. Shane Bieber (Yarmouth-Dennis ‘15), the Cleveland Guardians’ ace, allowed just one earned run and three hits over four-and-two-thirds of action while striking out four batters in his team’s 3-1 loss to the Kansas City Royals.
As for Los Angeles Dodgers ace Walker Buehler (Yarmouth-Dennis ‘14), the first-time Opening Day starter earned the victory to kick off his team’s season versus the Colorado Rockies. Buehler lasted five innings and let up two runs and four hits while punching out five batters on Friday, April 8. Fellow National League number one starter Corbin Burnes (Orleans ‘15) similarly tossed five innings for the Milwaukee Brewers versus the Chicago Cubs on Opening Day, taking the no-decision as he allowed three runs on four hits but struck out four in the loss.
Speaking of Opening Day in the Windy City, Cubs ace Kyle Hendricks (Brewster ‘10) earned the Opening Day nod for the third straight season. Hendricks hurled five-and-one-third innings of work for Chicago in their victory over the Brewers, letting up just one earned run on five hits and struck out seven batters to begin his season. Fellow Cubs starter Marcus Stroman (Orleans ‘10/’11) started the series finale versus Milwaukee on Sunday, April 10, registering a stellar five innings of two-hit, one-run work for Chicago. He punched out three batters in his no-decision performance.
Over in Philadelphia, the Phillies’ number two starter Kyle Gibson (Falmouth ‘07) hurled a terrific performance against the Oakland Athletics on April 9. Gibson tossed seven innings of two-hit work and did not allow any runs on top of his 10 strikeouts. This performance was just the fourth time the right-hander registered double-digit strikeouts in a single appearance in his veteran career.
Recently-traded for San Diego Padres ace Sean Manaea (Hyannis ‘12) took a no-hitter into the eighth inning on April 9 against the Arizona Diamondbacks before he was taken out of the game due to his pitch count. Manaea earned the win and did not allow a hit through seven innings of work, letting up just one walk while striking out seven batters.
As for former CCBL bats, New York Mets first baseman Pete Alonso (Bourne ‘15) showed out in the first few games of the season. In his team’s second game of 2022, Alonso launched his first career grand slam against the Washington Nationals to help lead New York to a 5-0 victory. Through four games to start the year, Alonso has recorded as many RBI and hits, two of them being extra-base hits.
Another batter in the state of New York, Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson (Harwich ‘06), had a memorable start with his new team on Opening Day. Donaldson walked off against the rival Boston Red Sox with an RBI single in the 11th inning to give his new squad the 6-5 win at Yankee Stadium. Through three games, Donaldson has logged four hits.
Fellow infielder Tommy Edman (Yarmouth-Dennis ‘15) cracked a solo home run for the St. Louis Cardinals in their 9-0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates. Edman’s 28th career homer came in the eighth inning to extend St. Louis’ lead to 6-0. Fellow National League hitter Kyle Schwarber (Wareham ‘12) launched a solo long ball of his own for the Phillies on Opening Day in the first inning of action with his new team. That homer helped lift Philadelphia past Oakland by a 9-5 score.
Last but not least and continuing with the theme of solo home runs, Toronto Blue Jays outfielder George Springer (Wareham ‘09/’10) hit one of his own on April 10 in a loss to the Texas Rangers. Springer and three other Toronto teammates launched homers at Rogers Centre on Sunday.