story by Steve McCarthy
July 2, 2010
COTUIT – The Cotuit Kettleers did something on Friday at Lowell Park that they were unable to do the entire first month of the Cape Cod Baseball League season: Win a second consecutive game.
The Kettleers defeated the Wareham Gatemen 4-3 to follow an 8-5 win in Wareham on Wednesday. Cotuit (6-10-1) advanced within three points of the Hyannis Harbor Hawks, who are in third place in the Western Division standings. The Kettleers and Harbor Hawks will meet on Saturday at McKeon Park in Hyannis.
Wareham has lost five straight and fell to 4-12.
Recent Arizona State University freshmen arrivals Deven Marrero and Brady Rodgers provided the game-winning run and the win in extended relief, respectively. Shortstop Marrero led off the seventh inning with a single and advanced on an error and a bunt single before breaking the 3-3 tie on Zach Cone’s (Georgia) fielder’s choice. Marrero was also one of two Cotuit baserunners to score in the fourth inning on Curt Casali’s (Vanderbilt) single.
“I was just trying to get on, trying to get something going,” Marrero said.
Rodgers faced the minimum through three and two-thirds shutout innings in his Cotuit debut in relief of starter Nick Tropeano (Stony Brook). Rodgers surrendered one hit and induced six ground ball outs, while throwing 20 of his 29 pitches for
“My goal was to throw strikes, trust the defense, and let them back me up,” Rodgers said.
Rodgers served in both starting and relief roles during his first spring at ASU and said he is willing to throw extended innings out of Cotuit’s bullpen.
“I just go out there and go as long as coach leaves me in there,” Rodgers said. “I’m just going out there and doing my job and contributing to the team.”
The Kettleers capitalized on three Wareham errors for two unearned runs. Wareham starting pitcher Jed Bradley (Georgia Tech) took the loss despite fanning seven through seven and two-thirds innings. All six Cotuit hits and four runs crossed during Bradley’s outing.
“(Bradley) did great. His defense played well and they’re a good team,” Marrero said. “We just had to stay focused and keep our at-bats.”
Andrew McKirahan (Texas) and Kenneth Ferrer (Elon) combined to pitch the eighth inning for Wareham.
The Gatemen scored twice in their first at-bat but lost the lead in the fourth inning and would not re-gain it. Cotuit scored three runs in the fourth inning on a Paul Hoilman (East Tennessee St.) solo home run and Casali’s hit.
Alex Dickerson’s (Indiana) RBI single tied the game in the fifth.
Tropeano entered the game as the Cape League’s strikeout leader with 22 through his first three starts, but added just four to his total through five and one-third innings. He allowed eight hits and walked one. All three Wareham runs were earned.
Wareham’s Zach Wilson (Arizona St.) went 3-for-3, while Jordan Leyland (UC-Irvine) was Cotuit’s only player with multiple hits, going 2-for-4.