By Roy Reiss
June 5, 2018
Are you ready for some baseball? As the 2018 season opener is around the corner, we present a potpourri of information gathered from here, there, and everywhere.
- Two of the stars from 2017 team heard their names picked early in the Major League Baseball Draft this week. Greyson Jenista (Wichita State) was a second round selection of the Atlanta Braves and the 49th player selected overall. Jenista, a 2-year starter for the Kettleers, was named the Cape Cod Baseball League’s Most Valuable Player last summer after hitting .310 with 3 home runs and 16 RBI. Three selections (#52 overall) later Griffin Conine (Duke) was tabbed by the Toronto Blue Jays. Conine was the 2017 CCBL’s Best Pro Prospect after hitting .329 with a team leading 9 home runs and 28 RBI.
Speaking of Conine, it was quite a day for former Kettleers as the Duke Blue Devils advanced to the NCAA Super Regionals by sweeping a double header from Georgia. Zack Kone (2017) went 3 for 8 in the twin bill with 3 RBI in the championship game. Conine was 3 for 7 in the 2 games but all 3 hits were home runs. And reliever Mitch Stallings (2017) picked up the victory with 7 sterling innings of relief, fanning 6 while walking only 2.
- You would think being the head coach of a team for the 15th straight season would have you at the head of the class in longevity amongst CCBL managers. That’s not the case for the Kettleers Mike Roberts who ranks 5th in the league in terms of consecutive seasons served as head coach. At the top of the list is Jeff Trundy (Falmouth) and Scott Pickler (Y-D) who both enter their 20th season in 2018 while Steve Englert (Harwich) and Harvey Shapiro (Bourne) will manage their 16th consecutive season.
- Wonder why more coaches in all of baseball don’t follow Coach Roberts’ thinking of having
your best hitter bat lead off. Mookie Betts is a great example. After all, the best hitter should
have the opportunity to hit more than anyone else. And how many times does the actual lead off hitter lead off an inning? By the way it appears Coach Roberts has more energy than ever as he enters year number 15.
- Can’t wait to see what Jen Rose has done with the Kettleers store in 2018. Wonder what new fashions, styles and designs will be unveiled.
- Speaking of volunteers, Don LeSieur has so many wonderful events lined up for Lowell Park this summer. Every promotion promises to be “must attend”.
A couple of other random thoughts before the baseball starts … Lowell Park looks as magnificent as ever after a blustery winter … It was great to watch one of my favorite all time Kettleers, Tony Kemp (2012) get a few starts against the Red Sox in the big 4 game series versus the Astros. No one could ever light up a ball park with their smile and energy like TK … Wonder how for the 2nd straight season Cotuit hosts a doubleheader on Father’s Day? … Coach Roberts will never really know what kind of team he has until July1st … The best picture of every summer is always the youngsters greeting the players after a game and asking for their autograph.
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.