March 6, 2013
By Roy Reiss
We may still have some snow on the ground here on the Cape but most college baseball programs have already played a minimum of 10 games. And it’s always interesting to check in on the most recent Kettleer players to see how they’re doing after starring at Lowell Park last summer. Most are continuing to post impressive numbers after last season’s spectacular 30-14 team record.
Leading the way is southpaw Kevin Ziomek of Vanderbilt who has turned into the ace of the Commodores staff. The Amherst, Mass native was recently named the Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Week. Ziomek in his last start turned in a brilliant shutout against Illinois-Chicago where he struck out 15. On the season Ziomek, who really turned around his career last summer with the Kettleers, is 3-0 with a 0.82 ERA and 33 strikeouts thru 22 innings pitched. More and more it’s looking like the stylish lefty is going to be a first round draft pick in this June’s Major League Draft.
Sticking with the 2nd ranked Vanderbilt program, Tony “TK” Kemp is leading the team in hitting with a lofty .383 average thru 13 games with 8 stolen bases. Mr. Excitement is a major reason Vandy is 12-1 on the season. And 2 year Kettleer Mike Yastrzemski is hitting .292 on the season.
Meanwhile Notre Dame closer Dan Slania is doing what he did for Cotuit last summer, mainly close games in a dominant way. The burly righty has recorded 2 saves and a win in his 4 appearances, and in 8 innings he has whiffed 7 with a perfect 0.00 ERA.
One of my lasting memories of 2012’s team was witnessing a bullpen session with Kyle Finnegan of Texas State and Coach Mike Roberts. The pair went over several ways to throw a change up and Finnegan put the work to use in his last few starts with the Kettleers. His hard work is really paying off this collegiate season as Finnegan is 1-0 with a 1.59 ERA. Most impressive is his 26 strikeouts in 17 innings as Finnegan continues to develop his electric stuff.
Let’s not forget the 2012 CCBL’s top hitter, Patrick Biondi of Michigan who’s hitting a lofty .385 thru 10 games this collegiate season. And finally Aramis Garcia, one of the country’s top defensive catchers, is currently hitting .326 thru his first 12 games with Florida International.
A couple of other quick notes to pass along as the 2013 season draws near.
- The Cotuit Athletic Association’s Board of Directors recently rewarded coach Mike Roberts with a new 3 year contract. Roberts will be coaching his 10th consecutive year with the Kettleers this summer.
- If you happened to miss it, former Kettleer shortstop Deven Marrero was reassigned to the Red Sox minor league complex in Fort Myers after getting invited to the Sox major league camp at the start of spring training.
- Store Manager Lise Bourque says the Kettleers Store will be jammed pack with new items this summer! It’s always exciting to see the latest styles.
- Unfortunately strength and conditioning coach Sarah Money won’t be back this summer. She’s landed a wonderful full time opportunity on the West Coast.
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.