Congratulations on your second CCBL championship! What are some of the top memories you’ll take away from the 2021 Whitecaps season?
This past summer was special, especially with not having a season in 2020. For the players, the Whitecaps organization and especially the fans, it was an amazing summer to be back on the field, and to bring another Cape League Championship to Brewster. This team was highlighted by a dominant pitching staff and a bunch of players that wanted to win a championship for the town of Brewster. Looking back at the pictures and videos of the postseason and the championship celebration, those images won’t be forgotten any time soon. The pure joy from the fans and the players will be etched in my memory forever. It wasn’t scripted. It was authentic and genuine. This was a special group of players and coaches that can never be replicated.
1. Were there any highlights involving Whitecaps alumni during the 2021 Major League season?
Will Smith, Catcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers had a great year again as the Dodgers made a significant run through the postseason. Zach Lowther, pitcher with the Baltimore Orioles made his MLB Debut in 2021. In the minor leagues, Ryan Noda – a prospect with the Dodgers – had a historic minor league season and Hunter Bishop participated in the Arizona Fall League All Star Game.
2. Many Whitecaps fans like to track the progress of players during the upcoming NCAA season that we’ll potentially see on the 2022 Whitecaps roster. Who are the players we should especially keep an eye on?
Some of the top Whitecaps prospects are as follows.
- Max McGwire, Infielder from the University of Oklahoma and son of former Major Leaguer Mark McGwire
- Parks Harber, Infielder from the University of Georgia. Parks was on the pre-season roster in 2021 but did not make it to the Cape due to Injury.
- Jackson Nezuh, right handed pitcher from Florida State. Jackson was selected as the top pitching prospect in the NECBL in 2021.
- Wyatt Crowell, left handed pitcher from Florida State. Wyatt is a hard throwing lefty and also plays the outfield at Florida State.
- Thomas Harrington, right handed pitcher from Campbell University. Thomas is listed as a top prospect in the upcoming 2022 MLB Draft
- Connor Priellip, left handed pitcher from Alabama. Connor was listed on the roster in both the 2020 and 2021 season, but due to injury never made it to the Cape in 2021. Prior to his injury Connor was ranked as the top pitching prospect in the 2022 MLB Draft.
3. Do you expect any of the players from the 2021 Whitecaps roster to return for the 2022 season?
We’re looking forward to seeing some of the key players from the 2021 championship team:
- Alex Freeland, infielder from the University of Central Florida.
- Kurtis Byrne, catcher from Texas Christian University
- Zach Neto, infielder from Campbell University
- Griffin Green, pitcher from Virginia Tech
- Hunter Owen, pitcher from Vanderbilt University
- Teddy McGraw, pitcher from Wake Forest University
- Brennan Oxford, pitcher from Wake Forest University
- Dale Stanavich, pitcher from Rutgers University
- Brian Fitzpatrick, pitcher from Rutgers University
4. Have you been able to catch up with any Whitecaps alumni from recent seasons who have reached the Major Leagues or are hoping to do so in 2022?
Social Media is a great thing. It’s been awesome following the careers of our alumni in MLB. I still stay in touch with many of the guys like Nick Senzel (2015), Brent Rooker (2016), Ryan Noda (2016), Zach Lowther (2016), Will Smith (2015) and many more. We anticipate that a few more recent Whitecaps alumni will break into the big leagues in 2022.
5. Will the Whitecaps see any changes in the coaching staff in 2022?
Success breeds success. When you win, I guess everyone wants your coaches as well. Many of our coaches from last season have accepted managing jobs for the 2022 summer season.
Our 2021 pitching coach, Scott Landers, is the new head coach for the Bourne Braves. E.J Devarie, our infield coach last season, is the new field manager of the Licking County Settlers in the Great Lakes League. Bullpen coach Sean Stevens is now the new field manager of the Lake Norman Copperheads in the Southern Collegiate League. Plus, our 2021 assistant pitching coach Alex Schick is pursuing an aviation career and is currently in flight school. We offer all of them our best wishes and continued success.