by Megan Kerr
July 29, 2006
SOUTH YARMOUTH — After a presentation honoring retiring Falmouth Commodores General Manager Chuck Sturtevant, the all-star festivities at Y-D’s Merrill “Red” Wilson Field began in earnest with the homerun contest and Cotuit’s Justin Smoak ( South Carolina ).
There were six contestants in all and the rules stood as followed: each participant would have the opportunity to hit as many homeruns as possible before registering ten outs and then the top two performers would compete in a championship round. The first round took some time as while Steffan Wilson (Harvard) from the Wareham Gatemen easily took first in the opening round with an amazing ten home runs, there was a four-way tie as Smoak, Mitch Moreland (Bourne, Mississippi St), Matt LaPorta (Brewster, Florida) and Josh Donaldson (Harwich, Harvard) all hit five home runs. A playoff round was then needed to decide who would face Wilson in the championship round, but unfortunately for Cotuit fans, Smoak was only able to come up with one homerun in the five swings allotted to him in the playoff, which was not enough to move on. Mooreland eventually defeated Laporta in a third playoff to face Wilson in the final round, where Moreland used his momentum gained in the playoff to hit sixteen homeruns to win the Home Run Rally.
After the homerun rally, it was time for the game itself where Cotuit had four players in the starting lineup. Jeff Rea ( Mississippi St , 2 for 4, 1 RBI) started in left field batting second, Smoak (0 for 3) started at first base batting third, Reese Havens ( South Carolina , 0 for 4) started at shortstop batting seventh, and Eric Farris (LMU, 2 for 4) started at second base batting ninth. Farris got the offense going for the Western all stars in the third inning as after Eastern pitching retired the first eight batters in order, Farris reached second base on a hit that the right fielder was unable to get to due to having a hard time finding the ball in the sun. After Farris moved to third on another single by the Western team, Rea then proceeded to give the West their first run of the day by singling in Farris.
Cory Gearrin (Young Harris, 1BB, 1K, 0H) came on to pitch in the fifth inning to fellow Kettleer Sean Gaston (Notre Dame, 0 for 2), who had subbed into the game in the fourth, with the West leading two to one. Gearrin was the only Cotuit pitcher to pitch in the game as both fellow all-stars James Simmons ( Cal St Riverside ) and Jay Brown (Young Harris) had pitched the day before against Falmouth . Gearrin was able to pitch a scoreless fifth inning for the West, but it fell apart in the sixth inning as Josh Satin ( California ) hit a two-run homerun to give the East the lead they wouldn’t relinquish. The East continued to put pressure on Western pitching, adding another four runs in the seventh inning, but Satin’s homerun was definitely the turning point of the game, earning him MVP honors. After a fun, though disappointing, seven to two loss, the eight Cotuit all-stars return to Lowell Park tomorrow to play the Brewster Whitecaps.