By Roy Reiss
September 25, 2019
Photos by Joe Cavanaugh, Rick Heath, and Josh Muir
What an ending to an incredible summer of baseball! Who will ever forget that 15 inning nail biter at Harwich as the Kettleers somehow tied the game in the top of the 9th and then survived a few scares in extra innings? For that matter how about the 10-3 clincher at Lowell Park and the fantastic celebration! We could go on and on as the Kettleers 6 game win streak in the playoffs led to the team capturing their 17th CCBL Championship. Rather than detail some of those fantastic moments, I thought it would be nicer to hear from some of the players who carved out the many 2019 memories.
“I want to begin by acknowledging all of the support the Kettleers got from the people of Cotuit, including the fans, superfans, and host families. Playing in that environment daily made it easy to show up to the field every day and want to win, something that isn’t present across all summer teams. Those who work within the Kettleers community, like you, the trainers, and the interns and broadcasters welcomed the players and took the time to get to know each of us individually and created a sense of unity. We were welcomed anywhere in Cotuit, particularly at The Coop and Polar Cave. Lastly, I want to thank Coach Roberts for the investment he put into every single player and the effort he makes to help in any way possible. His attention and desire to make each of us better individual players allowed us to play with confidence while our early work and practices created a team feeling. I can’t thank him enough for all of the work he did for me this summer. Can’t wait to return to Lowell Park.”
“I was only supposed to be in Cotuit for a couple days, I was on a temp contract. I was extremely blessed to learn that the team had decided to keep me for the rest of the season. I hadn’t expected that at all. Playing in Cotuit allowed me to only develop my baseball skills, but it also allowed me to create new friendships with guys from all over the country. I’ve learned that everyone has a different story, and even though we all come from different backgrounds, I believe that it is amazing how all of these players come together to accomplish something that most people only dream about doing. Playing for Cotuit was such a surreal experience and I’m so glad that I got to share it with my coaches, teammates, and the amazing Cotuit fan base. I’m more than excited to be back in Cotuit next summer to help the Kets secure another title. Go Kets!”
“My experience in the wonderful village of Cotuit was something that I will remember for the rest of my life. I am going to miss the entire village so much as well as the new friends I made. I would not trade this experience for anything, and I will always cherish each and every moment being out there. Every ball player needs to experience the way Cape Cod and Cotuit baseball is played. So, thank you Cotuit we are 2019 Champions!”
“Ever since I was a little boy, I dreamed of playing for Cotuit. I was lucky enough to fulfill that dream. Being a part of the history that the Kettleers have was an honor and adding to the history makes it even better. Winning a Championship in Cotuit has been the highlight of my baseball career. Cotuit is my home and I am blessed to have felt like a kid playing this game all summer.”
“My summer in Cotuit was the best summer of my life. Hearing “Have a Hit!” and “Here Come the Kettles” every day brought a smile to my face. I embraced the village of Cotuit and tried to take as many pictures as I could. The fans were unbelievably supportive, and they came to the park from Game 1 to the last game of the season. I will forever remember the walks to the Coop, and who could ever forget the theme song (Hey, Hey Cotuit) playing over the PA system before and after every game. To the players, coaches, and interns I want to thank them for making my summer so special and teaching me more than I ever expected I could learn in just 2 short months. I will forever remember my summer on the Cape and will forever embrace the friendships and bonds that were created.”
“Getting the opportunity to play for the Cotuit Kettleers this past summer and win the Cape League Championship provided me with friendships and experiences that I will carry with me for life. Lowell Park provided a “simply beautiful” backdrop for the summer, but it was the people and the relationships that I made that will stick with me the most. Getting to compete with players from across the country, learn from the various coaches, and interact with the villagers and fans from Cotuit encompass some of my favorite memories from the summer. Ultimately what made my experience on The Cape so memorable were the wonderful and hardworking individuals that dedicate their summers to support us players and ensure that we enjoy both the game and the experience of playing for the Kettleers.”
“Cotuit had to have been one of the greatest summer ball experiences of my life. Making the trip out to Cotuit I didn’t know what to expect, but I’m glad to say that I have nothing but great things to say about the village, coaches and players the village was very supportive and great people! The relationships that I have made will stick for a lifetime! Thank you, Cotuit,!”
“I spent the past two summers in Cotuit, and I can honestly say that it has been one of the greatest experiences I have had in my life. From being knocked out in the first two games of playoffs in 2018, to winning the championship in 2019. While also being surrounded by great fans and people of Cotuit. Having the same host family for two summers and just immediately being welcomed into the community. You just can’t find that anywhere, and it is something that I will never forget. Being encouraged and coached by Mike Roberts has really had an impact on my life. I have very much enjoyed playing for him these past two seasons. Cotuit has become a second home to me. Here come the Kettles!”
“My summer in Cotuit was a great experience, something I’ll never forget. I learned a lot from Coach Roberts and the coaching staff. I also met a bunch of great guys who will be friends for the rest of my life. This was one of the best summers of my life.”
“What can I say, this summer was everything I could have dreamed of. Growing up I never had plans of playing in the MLB. My dream was to play in the Cape Cod Baseball League. When I finally got the call that I was going to have a temp position with the Kettleers, I instantly got flooded with emotions. When I got back to Cotuit, I was extremely nervous in the sense that I knew I could get sent home any day. Fast forward to opening day and I couldn’t be more excited, until I heard the news of my grandfather passing away. He was one of my biggest fans and also a late board member of the Cotuit Kettleers. It was tough, but I knew he was always looking down on me. I was simply playing for him that summer and I truly believe he blessed me with the best summer of my life. From coming home to a temp contract, to making the All-Star game, then bringing home that shinny trophy. To me you couldn’t write a better script. Being from the hometown was a blessing and a curse sometimes. Blessing in the sense that everyone knows you and you get to stay at home. It’s a curse because you have all that added pressure of “hey you’re the Cotuit kid”. I felt like I had more to prove. All in all, I wouldn’t have traded this summer for anything. From baseball, to the community, to my whole family, I wish I could go back and relive it all next year. Not only did I achieve all of these accomplishments, but in the end, I gained an incredible mentor and friend Coach Mike Roberts. In just a short two months Coach not only made me a better baseball player, but I matured on and off the field. I became a better person and saw things a lot differently. I started to love baseball again and for that I can never repay him.”
“My time in Cotuit was a summer to remember. My teammates and coaches became more than just a team; we became a family. There is no better feeling than being the only team in the league to win the last game of the season. That is just what we did, we came out on top. I can’t thank my host family, Terry and Susan, enough for bringing me in and treating me like one of their own and for that I am forever grateful. Thank you so much to all of those who made my 2019 summer one I will never forget. Thank you for an amazing summer!”
Kettleers Korner will be anything and everything that might interest fans, past and present, about the Kettleers. Roy Reiss, who started his career working for Curt Gowdy Broadcasting, was a former sportscaster on Channel 7 and several radio stations in Boston. His son Mike now covers the Patriots for ESPNBoston.com.