By Roy Reiss
July 21, 2019
As we head to the end of the regular season, some random thoughts, observations, maybe a little insight on what we’ve witnessed to date and what we may see in the remaining time.
*With a playoff spot already clinched there’s always the great debate in any sport “do you rest your players, or do you continue to play hard?” There’s no correct answer to this question as every coach has a different slant or philosophy. For example, many of these Cape players have been performing since February with their college team and a schedule that could be upwards of 80 games when considering playoffs and the NCAA Tournament. They surely have some bumps and bruises and could use some rest before the intensity of the playoffs arrives. But home field advantage could be at stake for some teams and that extra home game helps the treasury of that team. You can be sure Coach Mike Roberts will line up his pitching staff for the playoffs but little else is predictable.
*Some rambling thoughts…..The more I watch Nick Gonzales the more I appreciate his all-around skills. He can hit, hit with power, has patience as well at the plate, is an excellent defensive second baseman, has real good baseball instincts and exceptional speed. In fact, he’s the best all-around prospect I’ve seen in the last 10 years of watching the Kettleers and the Cape Cod Baseball League….Here’s hoping we see umpire Dan Henry back behind the plate next year. You may recall Henry suffered a severe concussion when a fast ball at 94 mph struck his mask while calling balls and strikes at Lowell Park earlier in July…..I love to see the reaction when parents of the Kettleers players visit Lowell Park for the first time…..Think this 2019 edition of Kettleers is having fun and enjoys playing baseball at Lowell Park and elsewhere this summer. They are a most entertaining group!!!
*The Northeast part of the country is not known as being a hot bed for baseball prospects. Yet it was most interesting to see that 6 of the Cape Cod League All Stars come from colleges in the Northeast. The Kettleers were represented by Cody Pasic whose hometown happens to be Cotuit while he goes to the University of Maine. Other All Stars were Cody Morisette (Boston College), Max Troiani (Bentley), Matt Mikulski (Fordham), Chris Galland (Boston College) and Tyler Mattison (Bryant).
Questions, questions, questions…..Does it really matter which pitcher gets the win as long as the team is victorious?…..Has there ever been a CCBL season when there’s been as many rain outs?…..How many major league scouts will be around to watch the CCBL Playoffs?….Wonder what the home crowds would be like if there was ever ample parking at Lowell Park?….Is there a better promotion at a Cape ballpark than Family Fun Day on July 4th at Lowell Park?….What is the best-selling hat and tee shirt at the Kettleers Store?….Wouldn’t you love to read what Coach Mike Roberts has in his little book that he keeps?
*There’s nothing more boring in baseball than watching pitchers walk opposing batters. Checking the stats after 31 Kettleers games the pitching staff had issued 122 walks. Surprisingly
the team had allowed 122 runs to be scored against them in those 31 games. The question then became how many of those walked batters scored runs? Alert writing intern Will Kraus (Bates) spent some time pouring thru his notes and discovered that 30 of those walked batters crossed the plate which represents 24.5%, a pretty high percentage. And GM intern Dan Fortier (St Michaels) has taken it a step further as after 32 games, 62 of 128 runs allowed have come after a walk was issued in an inning, an astounding 48.4%. The moral of the statistic-throw strikes and avoid walks!
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.