07/09/2006 8:56 AM
THIS WEEK IN THE CAPE LEAGUE
(2 July – 8 July 2006)
Perfection in the Air
Coca Cola Pitcher and Player of the Week
COCA COLA PITCHER OF THE WEEK
Falmouth pitcher Shooter Hunt (Virginia) made two starts this week, going 1-0 to earn the Coca-Cola Pitcher of the Week. In 13 innings Hunt showed superb command, giving up only five hits and two runs while striking out fourteen batters and walking four. His ERA on the week was 1.38 as he helped Falmouth improve to 8-10 on the season, only five points out of a playoff spot. Hunt currently leads the league in strikeouts with 32, four ahead of the next closest pitcher.
COCA COLA PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Josh Donaldson (Auburn) of the Harwich Mariners has been named this week’s Coca-Cola Player of the Week. Donaldson knocked out nine hits in 22 at-bats this week for a .409 average. He drove in seven runs and scored four times himself, including one home run. Donaldson had a slugging percentage of .682 and also hit three doubles in his impressive week at the plate. Harwich is currently third in the Eastern Division at 9-10, eight points out of first place.
By Kevin Wolfe, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Braves Turn To Bullpen To Find Strength
BOURNE, Mass. – With the final team rosters being assigned for July 5, the Bourne Braves are looking to their new, “refined” bullpen to provide a boost of confidence to the general aura of the team.
After a disappointing loss to the Y-D Red Sox on Saturday, the Braves headed back home to host the Hyannis Mets. Tom Farmer (Akron) came back from a frustrating loss to complement the recently hot bats of the Braves with a victory. With an eventual no-decision awarded to the pitcher, the team showed offensive promise by posting four runs on three hits in the bottom of the sixth. The fans were able to see new arrival Bobby Bell (Rice) pitch for the first time this season at their home field. Together Bell and Ben Hunter (Wake Forest) held the Mets scoreless over the last two innings, giving up only one hit and striking out three. With two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Brian Leclerc (Florida) singled to center and immediately moved into scoring position by stealing second, his tenth of the season. Brett Bartles (Duke) followed with an RBI single, tying the game at 7-7. The nightfall secured the Braves their first tie of the season.
The bats continued for the Braves the following night, when they traveled over the bridge to Spillane Field at Wareham. The Braves were able to score seven runs over eight innings against Wareham pitching. Bourne starter Eammon Portice (Highpoint College) pitched outstanding over the course of 7 1/3 innings until relieved after putting two on in the eighth. Braves relief gave up six runs in the bottom half of the eighth, eventually leaving the game to be decided in extra innings. The Braves were unable to produce anything offensively in the extras and failed to close out the game in the 11th with two outs, giving up a game-winning RBI single.
Following a disappointing loss, the Braves were eager to get back on the field again to face the Gatemen. Using the Fourth of July weekend as a promotional venture, the Braves officially opened the new field by acknowledging everyone that was involved in completing the process. Swinging the bats early, the Braves posted five runs in the first two innings and held the Gatemen scoreless until the fifth. Braves starter Kyle Walker (Texas) held the Gatemen to three hits and one unearned run over the course of six innings. Brett Bartles (Duke) and Mitch Mooreland (Mississippi State) led the Braves offensively posting individual multi-hit games. Relief pitching combined to hold the Gatemen to only two hits over the last three innings, led by Chris Salberg (Florida Atlantic).
The Braves were scheduled to make up a game this weekend, but unfortunately were called again due to the disappointing weather. With a total of seven rain outs, the Braves are looking for some much needed help over the next few weeks in order to complete the necessary games.
With two days’ rest, the Braves traveled to Brewster to take on the Whitecaps at their new field. Coming off a strong win over first-place Wareham, the Braves were looking to continue their success in the Eastern Division. Making his first start of the season, Bell was no less than stellar in his performance, throwing six innings and allowing only two hits in the shutout victory.
“Bell pitched a brilliant performance and has shown tremendous success since coming to the Cape,” commented Braves GM Mike Carrier. Recently transferred to the bullpen, Mickey Storey (Florida Atlantic) has shown his dependability in the late innings, throwing two innings while striking out four. Andrew Carignan (UNC) came in the ninth to close out the 2-0 victory for the Braves. David Cash (Florida) led the Braves with two more hits of his own, putting him on top of the list in batting this year. Carrier added, “Being able to hold a 2-0 lead with the relief coming in for three innings develops confidence amongst the team.”
The Braves bullpen has been much improved with the recent additions of Andrew Carignan and Mickey Storey. The team is showing tremendous potential after losing a total of four games this year in the eighth inning and later.
By Daniel Scalia, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Cotuit’s Brown Leading the Charge
COTUIT, Mass. – After an eight-inning gem in front of his home fans on Friday, Jay Brown is well on his way to having a great summer for the first-place Cotuit Kettleers. On a team full of pitching studs, Brown has set the bar leaving it up to his teammates to match him. Brown, along with teammate and closer Cory Gearring, has represented Young Harris very well and is surprising fans around the league.
Although the tiny northern Georgia school located in the mountains isn’t very well known, Brown has done his best to put it on the map. He is following in the footsteps of recent Cape Leaguer and Baltimore Orioles outfielder Nick Markakis, who also played at Young Harris. The school has been a feeder program for many of the nation’s best college baseball programs, and Brown is one of seven players who will be playing elsewhere next spring. South Carolina will be fortunate enough to receive his services next spring, and are more than happy to have this young arm on board.
Brown had a stellar season for Young Harris, earning him not only a chance to play ball with the Gamecocks one of the nation’s powerhouse baseball schools, but also All-Conference Team honors. In 51 innings of work, Brown struck out 55 batters and posted an impressive 2.63 earned run average.
At six foot, four inches, Brown stands tall on the mound – and the right-hander is able to use this along with his blistering fastball to strike fear in opposing batters. After one trip around the batting order, players have quickly learned to respect his stuff and are constantly on their toes, not knowing what Brown may deliver to them. One thing that has made Brown and so many pitchers successful in this league is his ability to change speeds and be very deceiving with his pitches.
Thus far Brown has three victories, his third coming from his tremendous effort Friday against a dangerous Orleans lineup who happens to lead the league in victories. To top things off on Friday, the game was closed out by none other than Gearring, giving a Cotuit a much needed victory at home.
In 20 innings of work Brown has struck out 16, recorded a save, and has yet to allow an earned run. Not bad for a pitcher whose name was not even recorded in the Cape League program at the season’s start.
After an eight-inning gem, Cotuit fans are left to wonder what he can do for an encore.
By Nicholas Mucci, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Demel Dominant in Closing Role
FALMOUTH, Mass. – In their last seven games, the Falmouth Commodores have only been able to pull away with a single victory and a tie against Hyannis. The one consistent thing they have going – besides the sweet-swinging Warren McFadden, who has been hitting home runs at a league-leading pace – is solid closer Sam Demel, who will make sure the Commodores win those close games.
Born and raised in Texas, Demel attends Texas Christian University. Out of high school, he was drafted by none other than the Rangers in the 35th round. That year, the Texas Baseball News named him the 11th best prospect in the state.
In 2005 Demel had a stint in the Cape League and struck out 45 batters in 34 1/3 innings as a starter and closer. Thus far this season, Sam is off to an even better start. He has pitched ten-plus innings and has only allowed a run with 14 strikeouts. If you look hard enough behind the Falmouth diamond, it is easy to see scouts drooling over this rising sophomore.
The Commodores have been living by the long ball this season, but if they can find a way to play small ball and produce some runs for the nice core of starting pitchers they have, Falmouth fans are more than confident that their young closer can pull out a win any time, any place.
By Nicholas Mucci, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Catching a Break
HYANNIS, Mass. – The Hyannis Mets may not be Cape League champions…yet, but they have already accomplished one major goal they set out for this season. In the fourth week of play, the 2006 Mets have broken their predecessor’s total win record for the entire season of 2005. Last year, Hyannis went 7-36-1 with the most losses in Cape League history, but clearly this year’s team has proved they have what it takes to win it all.
To date, Hyannis is third in the Eastern Division and gaining ground. The Mets’ 3-2 win over Wareham on July 7 marked their eighth win of the season. Although starting pitcher Austin Wood (Texas) allowed two runs in the first inning, the Mets would regroup and come back in the third. The Gatemen’s two scoring opportunities came from Bradley Suttle’s (Texas) double which drove home both Ryan Gotcher (Arkansas-Little Rock) and Dominic de la Osa (Vanderbilt). In the bottom of the third, a David Macias (Vanderbilt) single to right field drove Ramon Corona (NC State) to put the Mets on the board. Good fielding and pitching by both ball clubs accounted for the scoreless fourth and fifth innings. However, Ryan Flaherty’s (Vanderbilt) single to short drove in another Ramon Corona (NC State) run to tie the score.
Gary Lee (South Carolina-Aiken) replaced Austin Wood (Texas) in the fifth and shut down Wareham’s scoring. The winning run for the Mets came from a Matt Mangini (Oklahoma) single to right field that drove Macias home. Adam Reifer (UC Riverside) closed the game as the Mets took their eighth (and most meaningful) victory of the season.
The Mets’ success this summer has truly been a team effort. Last year’s pitchers, Charlie Furbush (St. Joseph’s-Maine) and Daniel Latham (Tulane) have shown coaches and fans alike how much they have improved from last year’s stint with the Mets. Latham is a CCBL pitching leader with four saves. His counterpart Furbush had the best game of his Cape League career against Cotuit, pitching 8 1/3 innings for a Hyannis victory of 6-1 on July 4. In addition, the team batting average is second in the entire league at .255 (Cotuit holds first place with .279). Talented hitters in Week Four include Macias and Jackson Williams (Oklahoma).
The Mets look to continue their winning streak on Sunday at home against the Bourne Braves.
By Courtney Reilly, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Gatemen Climb Back to the Top
WAREHAM, Mass. – After beginning the week in second place, the Gatemen were able to regain control of first place by the week’s end. As the final roster date was approaching, players were seeing new positions in an effort to stay in Wareham.
The Gatemen began the week by facing the Cotuit Kettleers, their top rival in the West. Having only seen the Kettleers once this year, Wareham was looking to regain the lead by posting a strong win. Jeremy Bleich (Stanford) was sent to the mound in an effort to tame the recently strong bats of the Kettleers. The Gatemen started off quickly by posting a 5-0 lead coming into the sixth inning. Bleich pitched very well in the win and held the Kettleers scoreless through six. The bats of Cotuit made Bleich pay on the one mistake pitch that was thrown all game and turned it into a two-run homer. Martin Beno (Mississippi Gulf Coast CC) came in the eighth to hold Cotuit scoreless for the last two innings, allowing only one hit.
Heading back home for a two-game holiday series against the Braves, the Gatemen put on a show for the fans by coming back from a 7-0 lead late in the game to earn the win. Unable to generate any offense off Bourne starter Eammon Portice (Highpoint College), the Gatemen were anxious for the first pitching change out of the Braves bullpen. Trailing in the eighth with one out, Bradley Suttle (Texas) began the inning with an RBI single followed by a three-run homer off the bat of slumping Luke Murton (Georgia Tech). Murton struggled coming into the week, but in the past three games has started to heat up. Heading into the ninth down by one run, the Gatemen played small ball with a leadoff walk from Diallo Fon (Vanderbilt), who eventually tied the game after a sacrifice fly by Steffan Wilson (Harvard). Neither team was able to generate any runs until the 11th. With two on and two outs, Dominic de la Osa (Vanderbilt) delivered a game winning single to left field.
Wareham saw little production offensively the next night when they headed back to Bourne for Game Two of the series. The Gatemen saw only five hits in the game and did not score until the fifth on an unearned sacrifice fly. Recently added Luke Putkonen (UNC) made his first start for the Gatemen in front of a strong crowd of 1800 people. Putkonen struggled in his debut, lasting only five innings and allowing three earned runs while striking out six in the loss. De la Osa generated two hits of his own in an effort to spark the Gatemen bats.
The Gatemen were scheduled for a make-up game against the Chatham A’s that was postponed earlier in the season; however, weather was not permitting once again and the game was delayed to a later date. Wareham was able to see Chatham the following night in the second extra-inning game of the week. They were trailing, once again, heading into the bottom of the ninth with two outs. A walk and pinch-run later, the game was tied with a Suttle RBI double. Suttle came up to bat again in the 11th with the bases loaded and one out and delivered a game-winning infield hit, scoring de la Osa. Wareham starter Riley Boening (Texas) pitched well over the course of seven innings, letting John Lalor (Mississippi State) to relieve him for four strong innings of one-hit baseball while striking out six. Lalor received the win in the late-inning rally. John Wylde, Gatemen GM, added, “The kids cannot get used to the extra-inning games; it’s not how the game is supposed to be played.”
Friday night the Gatemen were featured as the home team at an unfamiliar site. The city of New Bedford hosted a regular season matchup between the Gatemen and the Hyannis Mets. “The field played very well, the hops were true and overall it was a very good field,” commented Wylde. Bleich took the mound in the 3-2 loss, pitching well over eight innings while allowing one earned run. The Gatemen struck early, scoring two runs in the first off a two-run double by Suttle. But Wareham was unable to generate any more runs offensively. “Hyannis relief is what won the game for the Mets, all hats off to them,” said Wylde. Gatemen bats saw only four hits over the last eight innings of work.
Through Friday night’s games, the Gatemen have posted an 11-7 record, good enough to be a first-place contender. The Gatemen bullpen is continuing to impress, led by Nick Cassavechia (Baylor), who has been turning heads with both his delivery and consistency. This coming week, the Gatemen look to add to their win total in front of the home crowd in five of the next six games.
By Daniel Scalia, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Things are Busy in Brewster
BREWSTER, Mass. – The Whitecaps’ homecoming celebration was a great success, including a win against the Y-D Red Sox. Their record has improved, moving them to second in the division, and their hitting has been outshining their pitching.
Stony Brook Field was filled with almost 2,000 people on Sunday, but the one man that stood out in the crowd was Chester Robinson, the project manager for the field. He was presented with the picnic park being named in his honor. Chester said, “I feel elated!”
“Seeing this happen is my accolade.”
The success of the field and the day was also touched upon by general manager Ned Monthie when he spoke on the behalf of the entire Whitecaps organization by saying, “We have waited a long time and it really came through … this was a great day all the way around.” The Whitecaps brought in almost $2,000 at the gate and the fans practically covered every inch of grass around the park.
Sunday was topped off with a big win against the Y-D Red Sox. Southpaw Ryan Turner (Georgia Tech) got the win in his second outing for the Whitecaps. His man behind the plate, catcher Ryan Babineau (UCLA), hit a two-RBI single that eventually would be the only runs needed to shut out the Red Sox.
The Whitecaps have been somewhat lucky to win games purely with good pitching, but as they found out Monday with a loss to Harwich, pitching doesn’t do it all. The Whitecaps answered back on Independence Day by putting up 13 runs. Designated hitter David Cooper (CS Fullerton) started things off with four RBIs from a grand slam in the first inning. Teammate Jared Clark (CS Fullerton) added to the runs by hitting his first home run of the season. And Matt LaPorta (Florida) has continued to be an offensive threat by adding runs to the board; he has 10 RBIs on the season.
The week rounded off with another packed house at Stony Brook Field on Friday Former Whitecaps President Gene L’Etoile, the innovator of the field, was honored by throwing out the first pitch. Unfortunately, the Whitecaps did not walk away with the win this time; they were shut out 2-0 by the Bourne Braves. The Whitecaps will face another Western Division team when they head to Spillane Field in Wareham on Monday.
By Johnna DeChristoforo, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Chatham Welcomes Back Woodard
CHATHAM, Mass. – In the world of Cape Cod Baseball, anyone with over a year of league experiences qualifies for veteran status. Robert Woodard (North Carolina) can now be considered a serious veteran due to his rookie season with Chatham in the summer of 2004. Woodard brings leadership and stability to a team that is currently struggling. General Manager Charlie Thoms commented, “We are delighted to have (Woodard) back for another year.”
Woodard’s debut came in a crucial game against Orleans on the Fourth of July. Chatham lost to Orleans the previous night placed added pressure on Woodard’s debut, but the veteran would not disappoint. The large crowd at Veterans Field saw a magnificent pitching performance to start off the night. Both pitchers, Woodard and Clayton Shunick (Georgia State), carried no-hitters into the sixth inning, and Woodard had an actual perfect game. Working from his rapid windup, Woodard baffled the Orleans hitters and retired the first 15 batters he faced. Woodard’s momentum ended on a Mark Hallberg (Chicago-Illinois) leadoff bunt single. A series of singles and walks lead to two runs, and Woodard eventually came out with two outs in the sixth inning to the sound of a large ovation.
Shunick came into the sixth with his own no-hitter, but his bid was disrupted by an Aaron Reza (Oklahoma) single. Misfortune followed for the A’s when Allan Dykstra (Wake Forest) smoked a line drive to the right-field gap. The hit would have certainly scored Reza from first, but the ball disappeared under the fence and was ruled a ground-rule double. The A’s ended up stranding both runners and lost the game 2-0. The Cardinals continue to be a thorn in the side of Coach Schiffner’s Chatham A’s. Over the past two seasons, the A’s have lost a combined nine games to their rivals from the north.
Heartbreak followed for the A’s when they traveled to Wareham to face the Gatemen on July 6. Chatham took a 3-2 lead against the west division leading Gatemean heading into the ninth. The Gatemen then rallied with two outs and eventually won the game in bottom of the 12th. John Lalor (Mississippi State) pitched four innings of gutsy relief to get the win. The frustration continued on Friday night when they again went to extra innings against the Harwich Mariners. Josh Donaldson (Auburn) hit a dramatic two-run homer in the top of the 11th to give the Mariners a victory.
Chatham currently sits in last place of the Eastern Division but still has a shot at the playoffs. The team has the talent to get back on track and continues to get great individual performances out of Matt Rizotti (Manhattan) and Reza. Rizotti leads the league with 18 RB’s while Reza’s .378 batting average places him at the top of the league in hitting.
The Cape League uses a point system for their standings that rewards wins with two points and ties with one point. Chatham currently has 15 points, but has played only 17 games compared to 19 games for most teams in the league, giving Chatham an advantage down the stretch. The A’s will play a special doubleheader on Sunday, July 9 against the Falmouth Commodores. The games will be played at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. at Veterans Field.
By Jonathan French, CCBL Intern [email protected]
There’s No Lone Star on This Team
HARWICH, Mass. – A team can be packed with talented players, but if they don’t play well together, then they don’t win ballgames. Well, fortunately for the Mariners, that saying does not apply. Everything seems to be coming together smoothly for Harwich, and the proof is in the recent record.
It is so difficult to separate the talent on this team. Each of the now-permanent players have a major role in the outcome of every game. The entire coaching staff is very excited about the recent addition of players. General manager John Reid said, “it’s a whole different team with the addition of these players ... we are happy with the team as a whole.”
As usual, Mariners’ pitching has been outstanding. Let us give praise to the widely talked about southpaw Tony Watson (Nebraska), who has already posted a 3-0 record, an amazing 0.90 ERA, and 20 strikeouts in the same amount of innings.
How about returning Mariner Dan McDonald (Seton Hall), who has appeared in seven games with three saves and has a 0.00 ERA, and with the Mariners’ history of closers, McDonald has a lot to live up to. Reid talked about the Mariners luck with closers, namely Craig Hansen and Tim Lincecum, and “hopes Dan can follow the same path.”
After that it doesn’t seem like it could get any better, but it does. Welcome to Harwich, Damon Sublett (Wichita State). A recent addition from the Team USA tryouts, Sublett has made quite an impact on the Mariners. He is a good second baseman, he is solid at the plate, and he can throw a mean 92 mile-per-hour fastball. Sublett had his first appearance as a relief pitcher in the Monday game against Brewster. A lot of people were surprised to see the second baseman walk over to the mound, but what people were more surprised by was his ability to strike out three of the four batters in the bottom of the ninth inning to end the game.
There is no doubt these pitchers have been great but the support they have received has become more and more of a hot topic. The support is not just from hits; the Mariners have speed and have capitalize on a lot of slip-ups made by opposing teams while making sure they keep theirs to a minimum. Make no mistake, though, the hits have been coming.
The entire lineup is consistently hitting well and putting up runs in a real team effort. However, Thursday night turned into the Eric Fryer (Ohio State) Show. Fryer hit a three-run blast (his first of the season) over the left field fence in Falmouth during the fourth inning and a two-run homer in the seventh inning, helping the Mariners to the 11-6 win.
Friday night was again a combination of good baseball played by all, but it was McDonald who got the job done by holding the Chatham A’s through two scoreless innings, while Josh Donaldson (Auburn) banged out a two-run homer in the 11th to get the Mariners the win.
The Harwich Mariners are now on a four-game winning streak, and with their pitching and surge of offensive support, the Mariners are closing in on the gap in the standings and just might settle into first place if they keep this up.
By Johnna DeChristoforo, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Orleans Goes Streaking
ORLEANS, Mass. – The world of streaking has been a constant in the world of sports over the past couple of weeks. The Minnesota Twins and Boston recently embarked on winning streaks of 11 and 12 games, respectively, while Maria Sharapova encountered an actual streaker during her quarterfinals match at Wimbledon during the week. The Orleans Cardinals did their own streaking during the past week, and to the joy of their fans, it involved winning.
The pitching staff helped to stretch the streak to three with a 7-0 win over Wareham on Saturday night and a 2-1 win over Harwich on Sunday night. Ty Davis (Vanderbilt) pitched six innings of shutout ball against the Gateman and had a season-high 10 strikeouts. Kody Kaiser (Oklahoma) and Danny Valencia (Miami) provided the offense with a home run and three RBIs each. Ryan Pond (NC State) matched his teammate’s great outing with his own effective pitching performance. Pond gave up one run in seven innings of work to get the win in Orleans’ 2-1 victory over the Harwich Mariners.
The Fourth of July holiday provided back-to-back games with Orleans’ chief rival, the Chatham A’s. In Monday night’s win against Chatham, Matt Wieters (Georgia Tech) came within a triple of completing the cycle. His mammoth three-run homer in the bottom of the fourth propelled the Cardinals to a 6-5 win. The homer rang off of the band-dome situated in right-center field of Eldredge Park. On the Fourth, Orleans traveled to Chatham to play in front of a packed house at Veterans Field. Chatham’s Robert Woodard (North Carolina) kept the Orleans offense in check by pitching a perfect game into the sixth inning. Luckily for Orleans, Clayton Shunick (Georgia State) also pitched a no-hitter into the sixth inning for Orleans. Mark Hallberg (Chicago-Illinois) broke up Woodard’s no-hitter with a bunt single in the top of the sixth. The bunt broke the momentum of Woodard, who ended up giving up two runs and failed to get out of the inning. The two runs were more than enough for Shunick, who gave up his no-hitter in the sixth but stayed focus and almost completed the game with a shutout. However, Coach Nicholson took out his starter with one out in the ninth and let Brock Baber (Kentucky) get the save. The 2-0 victor gave the Cardinals their third win in as many games against the Chatham A’s.
The streak was now pushed to five games but their momentum came to a screeching stop with a rain delay on Wednesday. After a 7-3 loss against Brewster, the Cardinals traveled to Lowell Park to face the Cotuit Kettleers, a team featuring both of last week’s Coca-Cola Players of the Week. Pitcher Jay Brown (Young Harris) and first-baseman Justin Smoak (South Carolina) showed why they earned those honors. Smoak hit a two-run bomb in the bottom of the fifth and Jay Brown pitched eight innings of scoreless baseball to lead the Kettleers to a 5-0 win.
Orleans ended the week in first place of the Eastern Division. On July 8, they will host the Harwich Mariners and will attempt to go on another winning streak.
By Jonathan French, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Veterans Return to Y-D
SOUTH YARMOUTH, Mass. – With a year of experience with the Cape League and two successful college seasons under their belts, Danny Lehmann (Rice) and Bryan Henry (Florida State) return to the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox this summer ready to compete. In their fourth week of play, the Sox are in fourth place in the Eastern Division. But with the help of Lehmann and his Rice teammate Evan Crawford, who are coming to the Sox fresh from finishing third in the college championship, things are looking up.
Lehmann recalls his summer last year with Y-D as one of the best summers of his life, saying, “Not only did I improve on what I set out to, but I also played in the all-star game which was an incredible and humbling experience.” As far as his personal goal for this year, he hopes to work more on his offensive game, noting that every pitcher in the Cape League is an ace for their school, which makes competition harder but also leaves room for improving his batting skills. Lehmann believes this year’s team, despite its position in the standings right now, has a shot at winning the title. “We have great pitching, a strong lineup, and good defense. I definitely think we have the talent to take it all.”
Some of that talent includes Bryan Henry (Florida State), another veteran for Y-D. Henry looks forward to working on his game this summer, noting that at times it can be difficult for a pitcher as “batters 1-9 for every team are extraordinary talented here.” This summer, Henry looks to improve on his speed first and foremost then concentrate on other aspects of his pitching. He feels the league offers to him not only the opportunity to improve his baseball skills, but also to make lasting friendships during his time here. “I still talk to a lot of the guys from last year’s team, and this year the guys are great too. I’ve made some of the best friends of my life here. I see some of these guys when we [Florida State] plays them and it’s just a fun experience.”
Lehmann and Henry hope to help their teammates adjust to the Cape League both personally and athletically this season. Although the Sox came up short to the Falmouth Commodores, losing 5-3 on Friday, that doesn’t imply that they couldn’t get the job done – simply that they couldn’t respond enough when time called for it. Bryan Henry (Florida State) struggled in the second, allowing two runs by Commodores Brett Wallace (ASU) and Warren McFadden (Tulane). However, the Sox would answer back in the same inning to tie the game. Lehmann advanced to third as Steve Strausbaugh (Western Carolina) took first on a fielder’s choice (Mike Bianucci of Auburn was called out). A throwing error by Falmouth pitcher Kris Dobrowiecki (Northeastern) allowed Lehmann to score Y-D’s first run. A Luke Sommer (San Francisco) single to left field allowed Strausbaugh to tie the game.
Scoring action would come again in the sixth in the same form as the first. Brian Wallace (ASU) advanced to home, this time on a Taylor Harbin (Clemson) single to left field. The Sox were quick to answer back in the seventh as Brad Emaus (Tulane) singled off his teammate and Falmouth relief pitcher Brandon Gomes (Tulane) as Luke Sommer (San Fracisco) scored. Unfortunately, the Sox were unable to capitalize on any more scoring opportunities and allowed Falmouth two runs in the eighth to lose the game 5-3.
The Red Sox will be back at it Sunday at 5 p.m., hosting the Orleans Cardinals.
By Courtney Reilly, CCBL Intern [email protected]
Around the Cape League Horn
Successful Field Dedication at Brewster: Attracting over 1,500 fans, the official field dedication and pre-game ceremony in Brewster last Sunday was a complete success. The Whitecaps hosted an afternoon-long celebration that involved a sing-along for the kids and Wally the Green Monster of the Boston Red Sox before their game vs. the Y-D Red Sox. One of the faces in the crowd was former Brewster GM Ty Brown, son of long-time Pittsburgh Pirates GM Joe Brown. The Bourne Braves also enjoyed a successful Fourth of July celebration at their new field at Upper Cape Tech and also invited several VIP’s and alumni.
Rare Twin-Bill: The Falmouth Commodores travel to Veterans Field at Chatham for a Sunday day-night doubleheader on July 9. Game 1 starts at 3 p.m., while Game 2 starts at 7 p.m., or half an hour after the completion of Game 1 if it ends after 6:30 p.m. There will be no curfew that night, and both games are nine-inning games. There are three more makeup games scheduled this week: Tuesday, July 11: Bourne at Cotuit at 5 p.m.; Falmouth at Wareham at 7 p.m.; Hyannis at Harwich at 7 p.m.
Make-up Games: Below is a list of make-up games announced this weekend by Commissioner Paul Galop:
Game of 6-15 Cotuit at Bourne to July 24th at Bourne at 1:00pm
Game of 6-15 - Falmouth at Chatham to July 9th at Chatham at 3:00pm (game #1 double header)
Game of 6-24 - Harwich at Bourne to July 28th at Bourne at 1:00pm
Game of 6-24 - Cotuit at Y-Dennis to July 18th at Y-Dennis at 5:00pm
Game of 6-24 - Wareham at Chatham to July 15th at Chatham at 3:30pm (game #1 double header)
Game of 6-25 - Orleans at Brewster to July 11th at Brewster at 5:00pm
Game of 6-25 - Bourne at Cotuit to July 11th at Cotuit at 5:00pm
Game of 6-25 - Falmouth at Wareham to July 11th at 7:00pm
Game of 6-25 - Hyannis at Harwich to July 11th at 7:00pm
Game of 6-29 - Chatham at Bourne to July 24th at Bourne at 5:00pm
Game of 7-6 - Bourne at Hyannis to July 18th at Hyannis at 5:00pm.
Keeping Score with the Cape Cod Times: For the second straight year, the CCBL has partnered with the Cape Cod Times to produce official baseball scorecards at regular season, All-Star and playoff games. The first 50 fans will receive a scorecard, along with a complimentary newspaper at many of the CCBL games. Advertisers include Banknorth, Four Points by Sheraton Hyannis Resort, John Hancock South Shore General Agency, Family Choice Mortgage Corp, Merrill Lynch and Outback Steakhouse.
Home Away From Home: The first-place Wareham Gatemen dropped an exciting 3-2 contest to the Hyannis Mets before just under 2,000 fans at Walsh Field in New Bedford Friday night under the lights. Matt Mangini (North Carolina St.)’s two-run single in the eighth inning proved to be the game-winning hit for the Mets. The city of New Bedford laid out the red carpet for the CCBL and the field was in peak condition.
MLB Scout Days in July: The Cape League will again schedule pre-game player workouts for the major league scouts during a six-day period known as Scouts Days. They will take place at the following games: Harwich at Cotuit, July 22; Y-D at Bourne, July 23; Wareham at Y-D, July 25; Falmouth at Cotuit, July 26; Brewster at Harwich, July 27; and Orleans at Chatham, July 28. Workout drills include batting practice, fielding practice, and short-distance sprints
Singin’ the 99’s: Brad Schiff, VP for league sponsor 99 Restaurants, sang the Star Spangled Banner on Chatham Bars Night at Veterans Field on the Fourth of July and also at the Bourne at Brewster game on July 7. He also sang the national anthem before a Boston Red Sox game at Fenway Park and is expected to sing at Falmouth during 99 Night at Guv Fuller Field on Thursday.
Who’s Hot…And Who’s Not: There’s a heated battle cooking up in the Cape League batting race as Aaron Reza (Oklahoma) of Chatham at .378 and Brett Wallace (Arizona St.) of Falmouth at.377 are the leading hitters … After slugging a two-run homer to lift Falmouth to a 5-3 win at Y-D Friday night, Warren McFadden (Tulane) leads the CCBL with six home runs, while Chatham’s Allan Dykstra (Wake Forest) is right behind with four round-trippers … Matt Rizzotti of Chatham is still the league leader with 18 RBIs ... Cotuit’s Jay Brown (Young Harris) is 3-0 with a perfect 0.00 ERA in 14 innings pitched, including a six-hit, eight inning 5-0 shutout over East Division leader Orleans, when he struck out eight and didn’t allow a walk. Shaun Seibert (Arkansas) of Brewster in 23 innings and Chance Corgan (Texas A&M) of Y-D in 14 innings are both 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA. Brett Cecil (Maryland) of Orleans leads the league with five saves, while after a slow start, Jared McGuire (Boston College) of Hyannis has improved his batting average from .161 to .276 and compiled multiple hits four times in five games … Cotuit leads the league with a .279 team batting average and is also the pitching leader with a 1.97 team ERA … Bourne, which has struggled with a 3-11-1 record, is at the bottom of the league statistics in team batting (.201) and pitching (4.77 ERA), but is starting to play better with two wins this past week.
Interns: Johnna DeChristoforo, Jonathan French, Lauren B. Malone
Adam McGillen, Courtney Reilly, Daniel Scalia