By: Koki Riley
FALMOUTH, MA - In a five inning, rain-shortened affair the Brewster Whitecaps (14-12-1) defeated the Falmouth Commodores (12-13-1) 5-3 at Guv Fuller Field in Falmouth, their second consecutive win on the road.
After falling behind 3-0 early on, the Whitecaps would score all five of their runs in the fourth inning to take the lead for good.
The Brewster rally began with a single from Darius Hill (West Virginia), scoring second basemen Nick Dunn (Maryland) and advancing Hunter Bishop (Arizona State) to third base.
The very next batter, A.J. Graffanino (Washington), would follow up the Mountaineer’s RBI-single with an RBI one bagger of his own, closing the Whitecaps’ deficit to one.
Brewster would continue to pour on runs in the rain as back-to-back walks from Kyle Datres (UNC) and Chandler Taylor (Alabama) tied the score at three.
With the bases still loaded, the Whitecaps capitalized and added another run on a sacrifice fly from Mickey Gasper (Bryant) to plate Graffanino from third and giving Brewster their first lead, 4-3.
Brewster would add their fifth and final run on the night after consecutive walks to Michael Curry (Georgia) and Dunn made it 5-3 Whitecaps.
“Create runs and create opportunities to score runs,” said Shevchik. “When we score big numbers, you’re always going to add five or six walks into that mix”
On the mound for the Whitecaps was newly-activated Bradley Spooner (Saddleback CC) who made his Cape League debut.
“I actually knew nothing about this team,” Spooner said about his opponent. “I came here blind.”
Spooner was solid and settled in nicely after giving up two runs in the bottom of the first. His final line on the day was 3.2 innings, five hits allowed, three runs (one earned), and five strikeouts.
“Really felt my cutter today, that was really strong,” Spooner said after the game. “Also, my changeup, which I don’t feel often, but when I do feel it, it turns out good.”
“He pitched good enough to win,” Shevchik said. “He threw a lot of strikes, mixed it up, didn’t have an overpowering fastball but worked his changeup, curveball, fastball, and kept hitters off balance.”
Spooner was signed by the Whitecaps on July 6th and activated on July 10th.
“This team is awesome,” Spooner said about Brewster. “I enjoy everyone’s presence, it’s nice. Everyone on this team is cool, the coaches are cool. Everything is really chilled back.”
Leaving the game with a two-run lead and the bases loaded with two outs, Spooner turned the ball over to Robert Broom (Mercer), who got out of the jam and then held the Commodores scoreless in the fifth, lowering his season earned run average to a remarkable 0.48 in 18.2 innings.
“Bringing in Broom with the bases loaded could have been the difference maker right there,” Shevchik said. “Him getting us out of that jam changed the entire tempo of the game.”
Broom earned the win in relief for Brewster, moving to 1-1 on the year.
After the five-run fourth, the Whitecaps would score seven runs in the top of the sixth in what would turn out to be an unofficial inning after the umpires called the game due to the rain making the field unplayable.
In the two-thirds of an inning that was the top of the sixth, Brewster batted around with four hits, three walks, and a Falmouth error. All seven runs came off Falmouth reliever Brian Gadsby (UCLA).
A Datres two-run single made it 12-3 and was the final play of the game before it was called.
Nevertheless, the Whitecaps would come out on top of the Falmouth Commodores in large part thanks to the solid pitching performance from Whitecaps starting pitcher Bradley Spooner (Saddleback CC) and Whitecaps relief pitcher Robert Broom (Mercer).
As for Falmouth, the Commodores got their offense rolling early as a groundout from Alec Bohm (Wichita State) scored Clayton Daniel (Jacksonville State) from third to make it a 1-0 game in the first inning.
Later in the inning, George Janca (Texas A&M) would reach on an error, allowing Austin Langworthy (Florida) to score and making it 2-0 Commodores.
Falmouth extended their lead to three in the third inning when an Alec Bohm (Wichita State) double drove home his 18th RBI of the season, making it 3-0 Commodores.
As the rain fell in Falmouth, so did the quality of defensive play in the field, as both teams combined for five errors in a game that only went five innings.
“Yeah, it’s a struggle,” Spooner said about the weather. “Every once in a while, you lose your grip. I threw a couple fastballs way up in the zone due to the weather.”
The numbers aren’t entirely surprising, however, as Brewster and Falmouth rank as the two worst defensive teams in the league by fielding percentage.
WHAT’S NEXT: Brewster finally returns to Stony Brook Field after four straight road games to take on the Y-D Red Sox on Friday. First pitch is scheduled for 5 p.m.