by Joe Pratt | Baylor University.
Mike Roberts tests the patience of Cape League umpires nearly every ballgame, jawing at the blues from the dugout and the third base coaches box. But today, Roberts finally reached the home plate umpire’s boiling point as he was tossed from Friday night’s contest in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Enrique Bradfield (Vanderbilt) was at the plate to lead off the bottom half of the inning and appeared to be struck by the first pitch from Chatham right-hander Ben Peterson (Florida Southwestern State). Bradfield trotted down to first after home plate umpire Jeff Merzel called time, indicating the hit-by-pitch. But after the three umps congregated for a discussion just in between the mound and first base, field blue Jon Matula made the call to send Bradfield back into the box to the disbelief of Roberts, Bradfield and the entire Kettleers dugout. After a few minutes of Roberts’ altercation with Merzel, the Cotuit skipper was thrown out for the first time this season.
Bradfield ultimately earned a free pass to first on a full-count walk. That brought up C.J. Kayfus (University of Miami) who was 0-for-2 so far on the day. Kayfus received a low and inside 92 mph fastball from Ben Peterson which he turned on and sent 384 feet to right field for a 2-run bomb, Kayfus’ first round-tripper of the year. Two batters later, Carter Trice (NC State) roped what would be his second base-hit of the game. Then another right handed batter, Caleb Lomavita (Cal Berkeley), notched his second knock of the game – a two-out double down the third base line to bring home Trice from first.
“When you put the ball in play, you make the defense work and when the defense works, it just adds another aspect to whether you’re gonna get hit or not,” Lomavita said.
Trice barreled through Anglers’ catcher Jack Rubenstein (Georgia Tech) as the seventh and final run for the Ketts.
But before Mike Roberts was dismissed from the game, the Ketts jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the bottom of the second. Cleanup man Tyler Johnson (Coastal Carolina) was the first player for Coptuit to reach the base paths as he was hit by the first pitch of the inning. Carter Trice followed up with a lined double over third base to put runners on second and third with nobody gone. Recently named all-star Eddie Park’s (Stanford) walk loaded the bases for Lomavita, who pushed one the other way to score the first run of the contest. The other two runs crossed on Trotter Harlan’s (College of Charleston) and Caleb Ketchup’s (Lipscomb University) groundout as Cotuit snagged an early 3-0 advantage.
Harlan etched another RBI in the scorebook on a double that scored Eddie Park after his second straight walk. The Ketts elevated their lead to 7 runs in the fifth. With a 7-0 lead, the Anglers scratched across a run on an error in the top of the sixth and two more on a double just an inning later.
Pitcher-catcher duo Daniel Brooks (College of Charleston) and Caleb Lomavita (Cal Berkeley) are the two youngest players on Cotuit’s active roster. Lomavita was born on Nov. 18, 2002 and Brooks was 28 days before him on Oct. 21. Friday night, the Brooks-Lomavita tandem started game 36 of the season. Brooks entered his fourth start of the summer by striking out 4 of his first 7 batters faced. Three of his four punchouts were on looping curves as Chatham bats’ fanned overtop of the mid-70s breaking balls. Brooks extended a scoreless inning streak to 12 with 4 additional blanked frames on Friday. The early 4 Ks were his only of the start and the towering right-hander only allowed one hit for the 6-foot-8 pitcher.
“[Daniel Brooks] is like throwing down from a mountain. But [Brooks] did well today, he lost his control in the bullpen and came out here and settled down.”
Brooks said that once he started to feel comfortable on the mound, everything came together for him. “If I aim, it’s actually harder for me to throw strikes. So when I really trust myself, it’s easier to just let myself pitch.’
Ty Johnson (Ball State) and Cam Schuelke (College of Central Florida) finished up the remaining 4 innings as the game was called after 8 frames of play. Johnson went 2.2 IP and was responsible for 2 ER while Schuelke was not charged an earned run in 1.1 IP, his ERA still 0.00.
Friday marks Cotuit’s eighth home win as they improve to a record of 19-12-5. The next game will be at 4:30 on Monday against the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox at Lowell Park.
by Clara Richards | Washington University in St. Louis
- Weekend games are always busy at Lowell Park, but once again, the Friday night Red Shirt Friday commemoration of the veterans and servicemembers added to the special atmosphere of Lowell Park. The honor guard walked out to stand at home plate, marching in unison across the uniform green grass of Lowell Park. Charlie Aftomosis, a USAF Colonel who served for thirty years, threw the first pitch to third baseman and current West Point cadet Sam Ruta.
The participants on the field were a mix of organizations from around the Cape. Heroes in Transition had representatives on the field an organization that provides assistance to veterans and military veterans. In addition, Joint Base Cape Cod attended the event, a group that provides support for the five military commands housed at the base.
- After a three-year hiatus, the All-Star game returns tomorrow, which will highlight some of the top players on the Cape League.
After a few departures in the lineup, Eddie Park (Stanford) and CJ Kayfus (Miami) were added to the roster, bringing the total number of Ketts in the lineup to seven. Other Cotuit position players include Caleb Lomavita (California), Tyler Johnson (Cotuit), and Tommy Troy (Cotuit). Pitchers named on the lineup were Harrison Cohen (Virginia) and Ben Johnson (Georgia Southern).
Being named on the roster has been both an honor and a motivator for the players. “It’s a legit list, but I gotta keep working,” said catcher Lomavita. “I know that I’m not the best that I can be, and all of the players are legit. So I’ve gotta be ready.”