By: Koki Riley
BREWSTER, MA - For the second consecutive game, the Brewster Whitecaps (8-6-1) took down the Chatham Anglers (6-9) at Stony Brook Field in Brewster, this time by a final score of 6-4.
After falling behind 4-2, the Whitecaps would bat around in the sixth inning, scoring four runs to take a 6-4 lead.
After a Christian Molfetta (Stanford) double put two runners in scoring position for Brewster, Hunter Bishop (Arizona State) brought home Justin Kunz (Gardner Webb) from third base on a ground out, cutting Chatham’s lead to one.
Back-to-back walks to Connor Smith (Western Michigan) and A.J. Graffanino (Washington) then loaded the bases for Mickey Gasper (Bryant) with two outs in the inning.
Gasper, who entered the game with a .366 average, delivered arguably the biggest hit of the team’s young season, a double off the center field fence, clearing the bases and giving the Whitecaps a 6-4 lead.
“I was just trying to shorten up, choked up on the bat a little bit, tried to hit a ball square like we’ve been working on in batting practice,” said Gasper. “I just tried to stick to the game plan, I got a good pitch, and I executed it.”
“Offensively we came up with the big hit, Mickey Gasper is coming up with the big hit, a lot of our guys are,” Shevchik said. “Any time the game is on the line I want the bat in that kid’s hands.”
With the Brewster offense finally breaking through in the sixth, it was up to the Whitecaps bullpen to close the game out and secure the team’s eighth victory.
Right-hander Chris Machamer (Kentucky) was stellar, tossing 3.1 scoreless innings while striking out two Chatham hitters.
Chatham got out to their 4-2 lead off of Brewster starter Will Tribucher (Michigan), who allowed four runs in 3.2 inning pitched while walking five.
“For Tribucher to struggle like he did today and still give us a chance to win today, that was big,” said Shevchik. “That game could’ve gotten out of hand really quick.”
Shevchik originally did not plan on starting the southpaw, but with the limited amount of arms available, the Whitecaps were forced to turn to Tribucher.
The Anglers would pounce on Tribucher early, jumping out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning.
A Nick Patten (Delaware) single brought Jeremy Pena (Maine) home, then Tribucher walked Fabian Pena (Manhattan) with the bases loaded to double the Anglers lead.
Brewster would answer, though, in the bottom of the first, thanks to a throwing error from Anglers third baseman Antonio Ralat (UAB) that allowed Smith to score. Then, in the second, Smith drove home Molfetta, tying the game at two.
Chatham’s offense responded, however, as an RBI Pena double gave the Anglers a 3-2 lead.
Chatham would then add onto their lead in the fourth inning on a Shea Langeliers (Baylor) double that scored shortstop Jeremy Pena to give the Anglers a two-run lead.
Anglers starting pitcher Connor Bishop (UC-Irvine) was solid for Chatham, as the lefty only allowed one earned run in three innings pitched.
Bishop was making his first appearance of the calendar year as he missed all of the Anteaters’ season with an oblique injury.
In the end, however, it was the Chatham bullpen that doomed the Anglers as relievers Reiss Knehr (Fordham) and Eli Nabholz (Millersville) together would allow four runs in the sixth inning alone.
Joe DeMers (Washington) would get the final six outs of the game for the Whitecaps, recording his first save of the season.
“It’s such a blessing to be out here playing with this group of guys and being in this atmosphere,” said Gasper, smiling. “I take every day like it’s a brand new experience and I’m just so happy to be out here so I do my best to help the team feel the way I do.”
WHAT’S NEXT: The Whitecaps are at home once again on Thursday as they take on the Hyannis Harbor Hawks. First pitch is scheduled for 5 p.m.
By: Koki Riley
BREWSTER, MA - On Wednesday evening at Stony Brook Field in Brewster, the Brewster Whitecaps (7-6-1) put eleven runs on the board in an impressive offensive explosion to defeat the Chatham Anglers (6-8) 11-1.
Brewster opened their scoring in the third courtesy of a Mickey Gasper (Bryant) two-run home run that would go well over the fence in right field.
After tacking on another run in the fourth, Brewster would blow the game open in the fifth inning with four runs, increasing their lead to eight.
“It’s special. Mickey’s a really, really good hitter,” said Whitecaps coach Jamie Shevchik.
After an Ashton McGree (UNC) error put runners on the corners, Chandler Taylor (Alabama) roped a double off the wall in right, scoring both runners and extending Brewster’s lead to 4-0.
The Whitecaps weren’t finished though, as Nick Dunn (Maryland) plated two more with a double to left. Then, Brewster catcher Justin Kunz (Gardner-Webb) hit his first home run of the season, making it 8-0 Whitecaps.
“We had efficient hits today,” added Shevchik. “We had timely hits and capitalized on the mistakes they made.”
Brewster’s offensive explosion may have grabbed the headlines, but Whitecaps starting pitcher Tony Locey (Georgia) was stellar in his second start. With his parents in attendance, the righty tossed five scoreless innings of work while striking out seven Anglers hitters.
“He threw really well,” said Shevchik. “His command was really good and he lived at the bottom of the zone. He threw a lot of unhittable pitches that were strikes.”
“Just the fastball,” said Locey about his success on the mound. “My off-speed was good. I didn’t throw it that much, but when I did throw it I kept it down in the zone...Just spotted my fastball really well today.”
In relief of Locey, the Whitecaps featured Robert Broom (Mercer) and Pauly Milto (Indiana) for two innings apiece. The duo gave up just one run in their four innings of work, while striking out four.
Despite being outscored by ten, the Anglers outhit the Whitecaps nine to seven, but John Schiffner’s squad committed three costly errors that resulted in six unearned runs for Chatham.
Brewster, on the other hand, had a clean game defensively, as the Whitecaps did not have an error and allowed their only run on a Jeremy Pena (Maine) ground out in the ninth inning that would score McGee, who had just tripled to lead off the inning for Chatham.
“This is a big win for us,” said Shevchik. “Any time we play a divisional game, where we’re keeping our head above water, those wins are more important. A lot more important than wins against the other side.”
The Whitecaps scored three runs in the sixth inning, increasing their lead to 11 as a Marty Costes hit by pitch would bring in a run. Then, Connor Smith (Western Michigan) would single home two more runs to make it 11-0 Whitecaps.
WHAT’S NEXT: The Whitecaps are at home again tomorrow as they play Chatham for the second game in a row. First pitch is scheduled for 5 p.m.
By: Carter Woodiel
The Falmouth Commodores entered Tuesday night's game with the Brewster Whitecaps with the most home runs in the Cape Cod League. When the game got started, they showed everyone why.
Falmouth (7-7) tagged Whitecaps pitching for four homers in their 7-1 win over Brewster (6-6-1) before 1,093 fans at Arnie Allen Diamond.
Marty Bechina (Michigan State) hit two of the Commodores' homers, extending his league-leading home run total to six. He finished the game 3-for-4 with three runs scored and three RBI.
Whitecaps starter J.R. McDermott (Colorado Mesa) gave up two of the Commodores' home runs. Shortstop Logan Davidson (Clemson) hit a two-run shot in the second inning, and Bechina hit a solo home run in the third.
McDermott (1-1) took the loss for Brewster, giving up four runs (three earned) over seven innings of work while walking one and striking out five. He did not allow a run during his final four innings.
"I just got back to my fastball," McDermott said when asked about the four scoreless frames. "I made two mistakes that really hurt me ... I just kind of got back to the basics."
Whitecaps head coach Jamie Shevchik had originally planned for McDermott to only go six innings, but after a 1-2-3 sixth his starter told him he wanted the ball. McDermott allowed two hits in the seventh, but did not give up a run.
Andy Pagnozzi (Ole Miss) relieved McDermott in the eighth inning, giving up a two-run home run to Bechina and a solo home run to Willie Burger (Penn State). It was Burger's first home run of the season.
Scott Politz (Yale) got the win for Falmouth, giving up one run on four hits over 6 innings. He walked one and struck out two.
The Whitecaps scored their only run of the game in the third inning, when Kyle Datres (North Carolina) hit a sacrifice fly to center to score Christian Molfetta (Stanford). It was Datres' first RBI of the season for Brewster.
The loss is the Whitecaps' second in a row, with the first quarter of the Cape Cod League season nearly over. Shevchik said he and his staff have done their best to spread around playing time, but added they'll soon make decisions on a more regular rotation.
"Eventually roles are going to have to be defined." he said. "Some guys are going to be bench guys, some guys are going to be a pinch runner -- we're going to have to win."
The Whitecaps' next game is at home vs. Chatham at 5 p.m. Eastern. Fans can watch the game on Lower Cape TV channel 99 and on the Whitecaps' YouTube channel.
By: Koki Riley
BOURNE, MA - On Monday night, the Bourne Braves defeated the Brewster Whitecaps 5-3 at Doran Park, halting Brewster’s quest for a third victory over Bourne in two days.
The Whitecaps defensive struggles continued, committing three errors and allowing two unearned runs, which proved to be the difference in the two-run loss.
“Our pitching is good enough to keep us in games and I think we’re getting just enough offense to win a handful of these things,” said Whitecaps coach Jamie Shevchik. “But we now have, I think, 21 errors and 17 unearned runs and that’s totally unacceptable. You’re not going to win many games that way.”
A Jared Triolo (Houston) groundball in the second inning trickled off Whitecaps’ first baseman Chandler Taylor’s (Alabama) glove and into right field, allowing Bourne’s first run to cross the plate.
In the following inning, after a Grant Williams (Kennesaw State) single, Whitecaps starting pitcher Connor Higgins (Arizona State) would throw over to first base to check on Williams, but threw the ball over Taylor’s head, allowing Williams to get to third on the errant throw.
“There’s too much focus in college baseball on pitching and how far we can hit a baseball in a batting cage. There’s no reward for guys that play good defense,” Shevchik said. “You don’t make all-star games by somebody playing great defense. It’s just lacking throughout the college game in general and that’s something these guys are going to have to take a little more serious because this is where we’re losing games.”
Higgins’ overthrow would come back to bite the lefty, as a single up the middle from Braves shortstop Turner Brown (East Carolina) would bring home another run, tying the game at two.
One of Brewster’s lone bright spots was relief pitcher Ryan Avidano, who didn’t give up a run in 3.1 innings of work for Brewster.
“Just working ahead early, throwing the fastball for strikes and putting them away late with the curveball,” said Avidano when he was asked about his successful outing.
Despite the three errors in the game, Brewster was able to score a healthy amount of runs early on in the game thanks in large part to Braves starter Ian Miller (Harvard), who walked six batters in 2.1 innings for Bourne.
Brewster got out to a hot start after Miller walked the bases loaded in the top of the first inning. Marty Costes made it 1-0 Brewster with a sacrifice fly to shallow center which looked like a bloop single off the bat but was reeled home on a spectacular basket catch from the shortstop Brown, scoring Kyle Datres (UNC).
Brewster would double their 1-0 lead later in the inning thanks to an infield single from designated hitter Michael Curry (Georgia).
After Bourne stormed back to tie the game, Brewster would regain the lead in the fourth inning when A.J. Graffanino (Washington) singled home Curry, giving the Whitecaps a 3-2 lead.
Brewster’s lead would not last long, however, as Bourne scored both Kevin Radzewicz (Fairfield) and Spencer Brickhouse (East Carolina) in the bottom of the fourth inning on a single from Jameson Hannah (Dallas Baptist). The base knock from Hannah would give Bourne a 4-3 lead.
Brewster would fail to score for the rest of the game as the team continued to struggle with timely hitting, leaving eleven runners on base.
“It’s the same story. We had opportunities to score and situational hitting is where we’re lacking right now,” said Shevchik. “All we needed to do was put the ball in play. Put the ball anywhere on the ground and we’d probably score two more runs, but again that’s not the case.”
The Braves tacked on a fifth run in the fifth inning when Brickhouse delivered his fourth hit of the day, driving in birthday-boy Lyle Lin (Arizona State) to stretch the Bourne lead to two.
Higgins, who had been stellar in his first two outings, was hit hard on Monday. The lefty surrendered seven hits and five runs (three earned) over 4.2 innings, raising his season ERA from 0.90 to 2.45.
“He’s starting and he’s now pitching in a regular rotation every six or seven days and he’s not used to doing that,” said Shevchik. “So there’s going to be a little bit of a learning curve and a little bit of a toll that’s taken on his arm and his body. I think after he bounces back, he’s got a fourth start, we’re going to keep him in the same role so he’s going to have to get used to this.”
In relief of Miller, the Braves bullpen was sensational as the four man crew of Nick Johnson (Rhode island), Dylan Coleman (Missouri State), Chad Luensmann (Nebraska), and Ryan Feltner (Ohio State) would combine for seven innings of work and allow only one run on seven strikeouts.
WHAT’S NEXT: Brewster travels to Guv Fuller Field in Falmouth on Tuesday to take on the Commodores. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.
By: Koki Riley
BREWSTER, MA - In the second game of Sunday’s doubleheader, the Brewster Whitecaps took down the Bourne Braves 4-3 at Stony Brook Field behind early offense and a stellar outing from reliever Robert Broom (Mercer).
“It just felt like a different team. We had a conversation with the guys prior to the game and it was about loosening up a little bit and playing for something more than just themselves,” said Whitecaps coach Jamie Shevchik. “Playing for the people around here and playing to win.”
“They need to loosen up and play a certain style of baseball and play relaxed and have some fun doing it. Some of these guys are uptight and it shows. Some bad at bats and we’re forcing ourselves to make mistakes so hopefully that little conversation helped today.”
After 4+ innings pitched from Whitecaps starter Davis Daniel (Auburn), Broom entered the game for Brewster in the fifth inning, with Bourne threatening to tie the game with runners on second and third and nobody out.
Broom set down the next three Braves in order to escape the jam unscathed.
“You know I think just really pounding the strike zone,” said Broom when asked about the key to his success. “Getting early in the count, throwing strikes. If you throw strikes, good things are going to happen.”
The submariner, who only threw a handful of warmup pitches before getting the call, shut down Bourne over the next two innings, securing Brewster’s second victory of the day and a sweep of the doubleheader and finishing the day with three innings pitched and only allowing one hit.
“Honestly that’s what it’s like all season at Mercer. I’ve grown used to that. Coach Shade, my pitching coach at Mercer, throws me in after three, four or five, warmup pitches and I’ve just grown used to that,” said Broom. “I think that’s actually prepared me to go to the next level and I could really thank him for that. I just think I’m really good at coming into jams like that and getting big outs.”
The Whitecaps found their offense early in the ballgame, scoring four runs off Braves starter Ronnie Rossomando (UConn) in the first two innings.
Whitecaps first baseman Mickey Gasper (Bryant) continued to produce at the plate in the first inning, driving in the first run of the game for the Whitecaps on a sacrifice fly to bring home Kyle Datres (UNC).
Later in the inning, Nick Dunn (Maryland) walked with the bases loaded, plating another run and making it 2-0 Whitecaps.
A third run would score in the inning on a Justin Kunz (Gardner Webb) single, bringing home outfielder Chandler Taylor (Alabama).
The Whitecaps would tack on a fourth run in the very next inning, with Gasper collecting his second RBI of the game by driving in Dunn to make it 4-0 Whitecaps.
Gasper would go 1-2 on the day and raise his batting average on the season to a stellar .406 clip.
From that point on, it was a matter of the Whitecaps’ pitching staff holding the Braves’ offense at bay.
The Braves would answer in the top of the fourth inning with three runs of their own.
With two Bourne runners in scoring position, a Justin Kunz (Gardner-Webb) passed ball would allow a run to score.
Bourne would continue to swing the game’s momentum, capitalizing with two men in scoring position and two outs thanks to a single up the middle from catcher Kevin Radzewicz (Fairfield) that would make the score 4-3.
Daniel would eventually get out of the fourth inning, but the right hander would fail to get an out in the fifth and leave his first appearance for the Whitecaps after allowing three runs while striking out four.
“I like him. He throws a lot of strikes and fills up the strike zone,” said Shevchik. “He’s got three pitches which will solidify him as a starter.”
“I think he got a little tired when he got into the fifth inning. I give credit to Broom for coming in and cleaning that up for him,” added Shevchik. “I think he’s going to be a good one for us. He hasn’t pitched in over a month so I think his next start is going to be a bit sharper.”
For Bourne, reliever Zach Mort (George Mason) kept his team in the game with 3.1 innings of scoreless relief for the Braves, but his offense couldn’t quite provide enough support.
Offensively, the Whitecaps lineup produced from top to bottom. Brewster’s one, two, and three hitters (Datres, Dunn, and Gasper), combined to go 4-8 with four runs scored and two runs batted in.
Eight and nine hitters Kunz and Christian Molfetta (Stanford) finished game two a combined three-for-six with a run batted in.
When asked about playing the Braves for the third time in two days on Monday, Broom was excited for the rematch.
“This is very similar to a weekend series that we would play in college. We play three games in two days or something like that,” said Broom. “So I think seeing the same lineup, we can, as pitchers, can tell the other pitchers the weaknesses and strengths of these hitters. I think overall, like I said, this is a great group of pitchers and I think we’ll do fine, and I’m excited to continue playing the rest of the year.”
WHAT’S NEXT: The Whitecaps head to Bourne to play their third game in two days against the Braves at Doran Park. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.
By: Koki Riley
BREWSTER, MA - The Brewster Whitecaps came away with a 6-4 victory over the Bourne Braves in game one of Sunday’s doubleheader thanks to Marty Costes’ two-run walk-off home run in the eighth inning (doubleheaders are seven inning games).
Entering the bottom of the eighth knotted at four, Michael Curry (Georgia) worked a one-out walk to bring Costes to the plate.
Costes, who entered the game in the sixth inning as a pinch-hitter, took a 0-1 fastball from Bourne southpaw P.J. Poulin (UConn) and smashed it on a line to left field, clearing the fence and ending the game.
“I was just sitting on something over the plate,” said Costes. “I felt like I wanted to get my swing off and stay aggressive. Even though the first pitch came in for a strike, I wasn’t intimidated.”
The home run was Costes’ second of the season and Brewster’s first walk-off victory.
The first four innings of the game were a scoreless pitchers duel between Brewster’s Joe Molettiere (Monmouth) and Bourne’s Daniel Bies (Gonzaga).
Molettiere was sensational, giving the Whitecaps 5.2 innings and allowing only one earned run on five hits.
For the first four innings, Bies matched him out-for-out. The Gonzaga Bulldog did not give up a run until the fifth inning, when the Whitecaps brought home three runs on three hits.
In the fifth, Whitecaps’ center fielder Hunter Bishop (Arizona State) got the scoring going with a single that brought home Chandler Taylor (Alabama), tying the score at one apiece.
Bishop advanced to second base on the throw from Braves center fielder Jameson Hannah (Dallas Baptist), while Whitecaps left fielder Cesar Trejo (UNC Greensboro) took third giving Brewster two runners in scoring position with no outs.
A sacrifice fly from Darius Hill (West Virginia) and a groundout from shortstop A.J. Graffanino (Washington) would bring both runners home, giving the Whitecaps a 3-1 lead.
After Bourne cut the lead to one in the top of the sixth, the Whitecaps would answer.
Braves reliever P.J. Poulin (UConn) walked Bishop with the bases loaded, bring home the fourth run of the game for Brewster.
Brewster led 4-2 going into the top of the seventh inning, needing just three outs to secure the win, but Bourne tied the game after a Graffanino throwing error allowed two Braves to score.
The Whitecaps, who already had the lowest fielding percentage in the Cape League would commit four more errors in the game, allowing three unearned runs to score.
Chris Machamer (Kentucky) picked up the win for Brewster, his first of the season. Machamer went 2.1 innings, giving up just one hit and one earned run while striking out three.
While Costes’ home run will get the headlines, Bishop had his best game in a Brewster uniform, finishing 1-2 at the plate with two runs batted in and a run scored.
“He’s a young guy and he’s feeling around for things, he’s a little new,” Costes said of his fellow Brewster outfielder. “We’ve been trying to welcome him the best we can and he’s having a fun time. He’s a good guy, so I’m happy for him.”
Whitecaps slugger Mickey Gasper (Bryant) finished 2-3 with a run scored, raising his batting average to an even .400.
WHAT’S NEXT: The Whitecaps play the second game of the double header against Bourne at Stony Brook Field at 5 p.m.
By: Koki Riley
CHATHAM, MA- In a game that coach Jamie Shevchik labeled the most important of the Brewster Whitecaps’ young season, it seemed as though the Whitecaps were doomed from the start.
Shevchik was hoping to get at least six innings from starter Zach Linginfelter (Tennessee), who entered the game with an ERA of zero in his first two appearances.
Instead, he got zero, as Linginfelter was removed after throwing a few warmup pitches before the bottom of the first inning and the Whitecaps would go on to lose to the Anglers 5-4 at Veteran’s Field on Saturday night.
“I think he has a strained oblique. He felt something in the bullpen on his last pitch and tried to go out but just couldn’t do it,” said Shevchik. “We’re going to rest him for a few days and see if he gets any better. Hopefully it’s minor, but if it is a strained oblique it could be a couple weeks.”
After jumping out to a 3-0 lead through two innings, Brewster failed to capitalize with runners on base throughout the game, including two bases loaded situations.
In the eighth inning, the Whitecaps only trailed by one run and had the bases loaded with only one out, but A.J. Graffanino (Washington) struck out, and the Whitecaps' hopes for another comeback were squashed on the very next play.
Kyle Datres (UNC) ripped a line drive into left-center field, only to be robbed of extra bases by a spectacular diving catch from Anglers center fielder D.J. Artis (Liberty).
The former Red Sox draftee’s sensational catch was essentially the final nail in the coffin for Brewster, as Anglers reliever Jack DeGroat (Liberty) would finish off the Whitecaps in the ninth inning for the save.
In the fifth inning, the Whitecaps had the bases loaded with one out, but failed to score after a line drive off the bat of Connor Smith (Western Michigan) went right to Anglers shortstop Jeremy Pena (Maine), who caught Michael Curry (Georgia) too far off second and touched the bag to complete the double play for the third out of the inning.
“We had opportunities to score runs and we didn’t,” said Shevchik. “We struck out in big situations where all we had to do is put the ball in play. It wasn’t so much what they did to us as we shot ourselves in the foot.”
With the team’s struggles to get the big hit, the highlight of the game for the Whitecaps was the spectacular performance from reliever Jonathan Stiever (Indiana).
The righty from Cedarburg, Wisconsin would not surrender a run or walk a batter in 5.1 innings of work, while striking out eight Anglers.
“Mostly just attacking with the fastball,” said Stiever. “I was able to locate that and pitch off that throughout my whole outing. It was really the key to it.”
“He’s still going to pitch in the bullpen. He’s going to pitch in similar situations that he is right now,” said Shevchik on Stiever’s role going forward. “Now if we lose Zach [Linginfelter] for the summer, that changes a lot of things. I think the perfect role for him is exactly what you saw today. Come in early on and be able to stretch it out for a handful of innings.”
With Liginfelter unable to start, Shevchik turned to Pauly Milto (Indiana) to take the hill for Brewster.
Milto struggled with his command, and despite two scoreless innings to start things off and three runs of support from his offense, the right-hander surrendered all five of the Anglers’ runs in the bottom of the third.
“He just has to have a short memory,” said Stiever of his Indiana teammate. “It was kind of a spot start, he didn’t know he was going to pitch until right before the game. He’ll flush it, he’s a competitor.”
After Milto loaded the bases with one out, Anglers second baseman Josh Shaw (St. John’s) lined a two-run single to right, scoring Jake Palomaki (Boston College) and Jeremy Pena (Maine) to cut the Chatham deficit to one in the third.
Jacob Olson (South Carolina) followed with a two-run double, giving the Anglers the 4-3 lead.
Olson himself would then score thanks to another Anglers double from the designated hitter Shea Langeliers (Baylor).
The Whitecaps got out to their 3-0 lead thanks to a Mickey Gasper (Bryant) sacrifice fly in the first inning, followed by a second inning RBI-groundout by Graffanino and a Gasper RBI-single.
Brewster would get a run back on a Curry sacrifice fly to right field in the sixth inning, but the 5-4 Chatham lead would hold.
WHAT’S NEXT: The Whitecaps head back home on Sunday for a doubleheader against the Bourne Braves with the first game slated to start at 2 p.m.
By: Aodhán Doyle
BREWSTER, MA – Brewster Whitecaps coach Jamie Shevchik felt that, with the way his pitching staff had been rolling, three or four runs from the team’s offense would likely be enough for a victory.
On Friday at Stony Brook Field, however, it wasn’t, as the Whitecaps fell to the Cotuit Kettleers 12-6 in 8 innings (game called due to darkness).
Brewster jumped out to an early 4-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning, but would fail to score again until the bottom of the sixth inning.
“This was, offensively, not really keeping our foot on the gas pedal,” said Shevchik. “We had opportunities to score runs beyond the first inning and didn’t. We just couldn’t put it away.”
Cotuit would score all twelve of their runs between the fourth and seventh innings, with six coming in the sixth.
Entering the inning trailing 4-3, Kettleers’ designated hitter Chandler Avant (Alabama) rocketed a fly ball to center field and over the head of Whitecaps’ center fielder Devin Foyle (Kansas).
The play was initially ruled a game-tying home run, but after discussing it as a crew, the umpires decided to overturn the call, awarding Avant a ground-rule double.
Despite an extensive argument from Cotuit coach Mike Roberts, the overturned call stood, but the Kettleers quickly made the controversial play old news.
Cotuit strung together five hits and seven baserunners in the inning, taking the lead on a two-run Luke Alexander (Mississippi State) single to right. The Kettleers batted around before Joe Demers (Washington) got Avant to fly out to center to end the inning after Cotuit extended their lead to 9-4.
Tony Locey (Georgia) got the start for Brewster and was stellar through his first four innings, striking out eight and allowing just one run.
Locey used a sharp breaking ball and superb command of a low-to-mid 90s fastball to keep an explosive Kettleers offense in check.
The third time through the order, however, Cotuit jumped on Locey, who left the game with no outs in the fifth after allowing seven hits, five runs (four earned), walking two and striking out nine.
“That’s on me. The loss is on me. I’ll take all the blame,” said Locey. “Four times I gave up hits on an 0-2 pitch. That just can’t happen. I’ve got to execute pitches better.”
“He pitched well. He was throwing hard and he was locating his fastball,” said Shevchik. “He made a couple bad pitches but you’re allowed to make a couple bad pitches. This wasn’t on him.”
After Foyle was hit by a pitch in the 6th, Brewster third baseman Christian Molfetta (Stanford) brought him home with a double to right, and eventually came home himself on an A.J. Graffanino (Washington) sacrifice fly, cutting Cotuit’s lead to three.
“Our biggest takeaway from this is we put up runs early in the first inning and couldn’t capitalize,” Shevchik said. “The key is when you get somebody down you put your foot on their throat and we didn’t do that.”
“We just never gave up, we fought until the end,” added Locey. “Just tough coming back from that big of a lead, but we’re going to keep fighting and we’re going to battle it out all year.”
The Whitecaps bullpen couldn’t keep the Kettleers at bay though.
Despite entering the game with a 1.93 ERA as a unit, the Brewster ‘pen allowed seven runs in just three innings.
“Just forget about today. We’re going to have more of these,” Shevchik said reassuringly. “It’s a lot of baseball games being played in a short amount of time. We’re going to have some blowups out of the bullpen.”
William Tribucher (Michigan), who succeeded Locey on the bump, surrendered two runs in just .2 innings, and DeMers allowed two runs (zero earned) to cross the plate in .1 inning.
Andy Pagnozzi (Ole Miss) was Brewster’s final reliever, allowing three runs (two earned) and two hits in his two innings of work.
“We allowed them to come back and kept them in the game. I don’t put so much on the bullpen for giving up a handful of runs,” said Shevchik. “We could have demoralized them when we had chances and we didn’t.”
Nick Dunn (Maryland) and Chandler Taylor (Alabama) each picked up an RBI for the Whitecaps, while Darius Hill (West Virginia) drove home two with a double in the first.
Leadoff man Graffanino continued his strong play for Brewster, finishing the game 3-4 with a run scored and an RBI. Graffanino raised his team-leading average to .458, which ranks third in the Cape League.
“Tomorrow is a big game and we've got to come out and forget about this and play and win tomorrow,” Shevchik added. “Tomorrow is probably the biggest game we’ve played so far.”
WHAT’S NEXT: Brewster looks to rebound on Saturday against division rival Chatham at Veterans Field. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m.
By: Koki Riley
BREWSTER, MA - One day after scoring seven runs in their home opener, the Brewster Whitecaps exploded for nine in a 9-2 victory over the Wareham Gatemen on Thursday evening, earning their fourth win of the young season.
Every member of Brewster’s starting lineup had at least one base hit, with six Whitecaps recording multi-hit games.
“Winning is fun. Winning makes everything better,” said Whitecaps slugger Michael Curry (Georgia), smiling. “We’re really starting to come together as a team.”
After taking a 4-2 lead in the 6th inning on a Marty Costes (Maryland) single, Cesar Trejo (UNC Greensboro) came up to bat with one out in the 6th and crushed a ball over the left-center field fence for a two-run home run.
“Basically I was just trying to stay within myself, not trying to go up and do too much,” said Trejo. “My at bat before that I got myself out in a fastball count and kinda chased one. I reminded myself to stay within myself and trust my hands and I put a good swing on that pitch.”
Trejo’s bomb was his first of the season and gave the Whitecaps a four-run cushion.
In the bottom of the seventh, after an RBI single from Curry brought Kyle Datres (UNC) home, Chandler Taylor (Alabama) stepped to the plate with two outs.
After his two-homer performance in Wednesday’s Whitecaps’ victory, it was an ominous sight for Gatemen reliever Blakely Brown (Georgia).
Brown had good reason, as Taylor would stay red-hot by clobbering a ball to right field for a two-run home run, giving Brewster an extremely comfortable seven-run cushion.
When asked about the roster crunch involving temporary players like Taylor and Trejo, Whitecaps coach Jamie Shevchik said it’s an issue of nocturnal proportions.
“Cesar Trejo and Chandler Taylor are temporary players and we’ve got to find some way to keep those guys,” Shevchik said. “This is the thing that keeps me up at night, trying to figure out what the position player roster is going to be the next week or so.”
Trejo and Chandler both had two RBI apiece, while Curry led the team on the day with three runs batted in.
“My first two at-bats I just didn’t have the right mentality,” said Curry. “I kept thinking about my mechanics instead of just getting up there and swinging. I made adjustments mentally and just went after it.”
Curry finished the day 2-3 at the plate and each of his RBI came off a different Gatemen pitcher.
After Brewster jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning, Robert Metz’s (George Washington) single in the fourth would cut the Brewster lead to one.
Then in the fifth, a sacrifice fly from Luke Bonfield (Arkansas) would tie the game at two for Wareham.
In what seems to be a common theme for Brewster this season, the bullpen was stellar.
Andy Pagnozzi (Ole Miss) and William Tribucher (Michigan) combined for 2.2 perfect innings, before turning the ball over to Robert Broom (Mercer).
Broom, making his team-leading third appearance, closed out the game with two innings of scoreless ball, coupled with three strikeouts to catapult him into a tie for the league lead in strikeouts with twelve.
“I love our bullpen,” said Shevchik. “Our pitching staff is going to be really really good.”
Wareham’s limited offense certainly did not help out their subpar pitching.
After two solid innings from starting pitcher Justin Hagenman (Penn State), the Wareham bullpen would give up seven earned runs in seven innings of work.
“I could tell he gassed up on that first one,” said Curry, who singled off Gatemen reliever and fellow Georgia Bulldog Blakely Brown in his third at-bat. “It was fun facing him. I didn’t want to make eye contact with him, I thought I might smile or something.”
For Brewster, starting pitcher J.R. McDermott (Colorado Mesa), whose grandparents made the trip to Stony Brook Field, made them proud by only allowing two runs, just one earned, in 4.1 innings of work while striking out seven Gateman.
While his command was not as sharp as his first start, McDermott is currently fifth in the Cape League in ERA (0.96) and tied for third in strikeouts (11).
“I don’t think he was as sharp as he was against Hyannis,” said Shevchik. “But he pitched well enough for us to win.”
“The way our offense is rolling right now, if we can hold them to two or three runs we’re always going to have a chance to win the game.”
Also for Brewster, Costes went 2-4 with an RBI while the third baseman Datres went 2-4 to improve his batting average on the season to .286.
WHAT’S NEXT: The Whitecaps are at home once again on Friday as they take on Cotuit at 5 p.m.
By: Koki Riley
BREWSTER, MA- In their home opener on Wednesday evening, the Brewster Whitecaps used another comeback to propel themselves to a 7-4 victory over the visiting Falmouth Commodores at Stony Brook Field.
After trailing 4-2 in the sixth inning, Brewster used a four-run seventh frame to secure their third win of the season.
It was Whitecaps right fielder Chandler Taylor (Alabama) who played the hero, launching a three-run home run to left-center in the seventh, giving Brewster a 7-4 lead the team would hold.
“Just trying to see good pitches in the zone,” said Taylor when talking to Whitecaps reporter Maura Sheridan about his approach. “Seeing stuff I can handle and putting good swings on them.”
Taylor’s three-run blast was his second of the game. In the sixth inning, the Crimson Tide outfielder hit a solo home run, this one to right field, to cut the Brewster deficit to just one run.
Taylor finished the day 2-3 at the plate with four RBI and also reached on a walk.
“Me and Coach Smyth have been working the past few days, past week probably,” added Taylor. “Just trying to shrink the strike zone and getting pitches I can handle.”
Brewster recorded four hits in the seventh, including Taylor’s second homer.
After Nick Dunn (Maryland) led off the inning with a single and Pete Schuler (Kent State) was hit by a pitch, Whitecaps coach sent Michael Curry (Georgia) to the plate as a pinch-hitter.
Curry fell behind 0-2 in the count, but battled back to even it 2-2 before lining a single to right, bringing home Dunn and tying the score 4-4.
“We can hit. When we play defense and throw strikes, we can beat every team in the league,” Taylor said.
Getting the start on the mound for the Whitecaps was Arizona State lefty Connor Higgins, who also got the ball in Brewster’s opening day win in Orleans exactly one week ago.
Coming off being named the Coca-Cola Cape League Pitcher of the Week, Higgins threw five innings, while only allowing one earned run and striking out four in his second start for Brewster.
Despite struggling early with his fastball command, Higgins’ performance puts his ERA at just 0.90 after his first two starts in a Whitecaps uniform.
Chris Machamer (Kentucky), in his Whitecaps debut, closed out the game with a scoreless ninth inning.
The newly-activated Machamer touched 95 miles-per-hour and struck out one Commodore, picking up the Whitecaps’ first save of the season.
Falmouth, on the other hand, saw impressive hitting performances from Jacson McGowan (Purdue) and Alec Bohm (Wichita State).
McGowan went 2-4 on the day and scored two runs, while Bohm went 2-3 with a walk and a run scored for the Commodores.
Falmouth took the lead in the sixth inning when a triple from Marty Bechina (Michigan State) scored Bohm. Bechina would then score after a hard-hit single from designated hitter Willie Burger (Penn State).
Newly-activated outfielder Hunter Bishop (Arizona State) had a debut to forget for Brewster. The rising sophomore, who was named an All-Pac 12 Honorable Mention in his freshman season, went 0-5 with three strikeouts, but was surrounded by teammates ready to pick him up.
“He’s going to be really good,” said Taylor. “It’s about making adjustments and I think he’s going to make those adjustments and be fine.”
The Whitecaps’ home opener was originally scheduled for June 17th against the Chatham Anglers, but was postponed due to field conditions.
When asked about finally getting to play in front of their home fans, Whitecaps coach Jamie Shevchik was as happy as a clam.
“Great energy here in the ballpark,” said Shevchik. “It’s a tough start when you’re playing all your games on the road.”
WHAT’S NEXT: The Whitecaps look to build momentum as they host the Wareham Gatemen Thursday at 5 p.m.