13 July 2007

Brewster vaults into East race

 Photo by Merrily Lunsford
Whitecap Michael Marseco makes the double play as Mariner Matt MIller slides into second. Merrily 

By Jason Cook
GateHouse News Service
Fri Jul 13, 2007, 06:01 AM EDT 

Brewster - 

Brewster Whitecaps – Brewster has been burning up the East division as of late, going 3-1-1 over their last five games, bumping them up to second place in the division behind Y-D. The Whitecaps 6-4 over their last ten games (second best 10 game stretch to Y-D’s 8-2), clawing their way to second with 26 points.
    The Whitecaps clubbed Hyannis 8-4 Saturday, riding the back of designated hitter Yonder Alonsos’ 3-for-4, four RBI game, and a seven inning, one run performance from starter Mike Colla.
    After back-to-back one run wins against East foes Orleans and Chatham on Sunday and Monday, the Whitecaps lost to Cotuit 7-3 during their makeup game on Tuesday. Brewster bounced back to earn a tie versus Harwich 3-3 on Wednesday, but had a good chance to win the game with a runner on third and only one out in the seventh, but failed to get the go-ahead run across. The game was eventually called due to rain the eighth inning.
    Starter Josh Zeid only allowed one earned run over 5-1/3 innings, but the Brewster defense betrayed him, letting two unearned runs cross the plate to the cellar-dwelling Mariners.
The Whitecaps have been using timely hitting and solid pitching to win games. Brewster is in the top four in the league in average, runs scored, home runs, walks and fewest strikeouts. The Whitecaps staff also sports a 3.48 team ERA and have allowed the second least walks in the league.
    Brewster visits Orleans on Friday and Bourne on Saturday, then hosts division leader Y-D Sunday and Falmouth Monday.

Chatham A’s – The A’s are coming off a heart-breaking week in which they lost three games by a total of seven runs. Chatham lost a face-off with the East leading Y-D Red Sox, 4-1 on Friday, a game in which Y-D’s pitching was just too strong.
    The A’s then put together back-to-back one run wins against last place Harwich (2-1) and second place in the West Cotuit (3-2). It was an interesting pitching performance for Chatham as the A’s used five different pitchers – with none going more than three innings – to down the woeful Mariners.
After two inspired games, the A’s dropped games against second place Brewster (3-4) on Monday and then to the last place Hyannis Mets (0-3) on Wednesday. Chatham is now winless in three games against the Mets.
    Chatham could make a big statement this weekend with consecutive games against the first place (17-5, 35 points) Red Sox. The A’s were set to host Y-D last night and then travel to Red Wilson field for tonight. Chatham is 0-2-1 thus far in three meetings with the Cape League’s top team.

Orleans Cardinals – Offense continues to be the stumbling block for the Cardinals this season. Orleans has an astounding four one-run losses in their past five games. In all five it was the Cardinals pitching that’s kept the games within reach.
    After Friday’s postponement against Hyannis, the Cardinals lost 5-6 to the Bourne Braves Saturday night. Sunday saw the Cardinals pitchers allow one earned run (two unearned, another issue for Orleans this summer) in a losing effort to the Brewster Whitecaps, 2-3.
Orleans then split a two-game home/away series with Hyannis winning big Monday, 7-1 and losing close, 3-4, Tuesday. The Cardinals then faced East division terror - the Red Sox. Orleans’ offense put up a tough fight against the leagues best pitchers, registering eight hits, four runs and only five strikeouts. But once again pitching and hitting was not in synch and the Cardinals lost a close game by the final of 4-5.
    The Cardinals have lowered their team ERA to a microscopic 2.53, second lowest in the league. But Orleans also holds the lowest team batting average in the league – a sickly .209. Orleans has also struck out more than any other team in the league, 227 times. Numbers like that have lead Orleans to a 2-8 record over their last 10 games, dropping them from second to fourth in the East with 22 points.
    Three of the Cardinals next four games are against East opponents, a stretch that could be integral to the success of their season.
Friday Orleans hosts second place Brewster. The Cardinals are 2-1 against Brewster this season and look to keep that edge over the second place Whitecaps. Orleans then welcomes the Y-D to Eldredge Park.
    In their meetings this season Orleans has lost all three by a combined score of 9-13. Orleans then faces rival Chatham on Sunday at Veterans Field. Chatham has the edge in the rivalry this season, winning all three games by slim margins.

Harwich Mariners – The Mariners are coming off an encouraging week for a season that seemed all but lost. Harwich stands at 7-15 - the worst record in the Cape League. But the Mariners can hang their hat on the fact that they went 2-2-1 over their past five and have clearly not given up on the season.
    The Mariners took down the Wareham Gatemen in a 1-0 thriller that featured one run in the first - then a pure pitchers duel the rest of the way. Harwich starter Corey Young pitched 7-2/3 innings of shutout ball while reliever Evan Crawford picked up his second save.
Harwich lost on the road Saturday and Monday, to the Chatham A’s (1-2) and YD Red Sox (2-6) respectively. In between that Harwich picked up a much needed win at home versus the Falmouth Commodores, 4-3.
    The Mariners are coming off a shortened game with Brewster, a 3-3 tie after eight innings Wednesday. Harwich takes a look west this weekend - four Western division opponents before facing Orleans Monday. The Mariners welcome Cotuit Friday and Wareham Saturday and then head to Hyannis Sunday. Harwich is a respectable 5-8 versus West teams this season.