James Tibbs singled and doubled, scoring a run and picking up an RBI, but the Whitecaps did not have enough production to counter Falmouth Tuesday. Photo credit Sadie Parker.
by Eamonn Ryan
BREWSTER—The Brewster Whitecaps put 18 men on base Tuesday evening. They outhit the Falmouth Commodores 11-10 and only had one inning where a runner did not reach base.
However, that did not matter in their 8-3 loss to Falmouth (19-16-2) at Stony Brook Field. The 15 runners left stranded by the Whitecaps (14-21-2) were the deciding factor.
“We left a small army on the bases,” Whitecaps assistant coach Scott Grimes said. “We couldn’t get the hit when we needed it…that’s a tough one to take.”
Brewster had the bases loaded with two outs twice and failed to push a run across both times. They had no trouble putting the ball in play, suffering just two strikeouts across the lineup, but more often than not those balls found gloves.
“The biggest thing is getting traffic on the bases, which is what we accomplished,” Grimes said. “You can do everything right, tons of traffic on base and it just doesn’t go your way. This one didn’t go our way.”
Whitecaps righty Carson Swilling (South Alabama) had one bump in the road in his start, but that bump came in the form of a two-run home run by Luke Heyman (Florida) in the first inning. It was the only hit Swilling allowed, but a walk, wild pitch, balk and a sacrifice fly scored Travis Bazzana (Oregon State) before Heyman’s blast
Despite the three-spot in the first inning, Swilling settled in and allowed no other hits over the next 2.2 innings, finishing his outing with three strikeouts, three earned runs and four walks in his 3.2 innings of work.
“When you force teams to put balls into play, you’re gonna be okay. It’s the walks that tend to kill you,” Grimes said.
It took the Whitecaps a few innings to respond to the Commodores, as they left four men on base in the first two innings. In the third, James Tibbs (Florida State) doubled and was singled home by Josh Pearson (LSU), but Brewster once again left two more men on base.
Tibbs came up clutch in the fourth as well, punching a base knock through the right side to score Hunter D’Amato (Fairleigh Dickinson), making it 3-2 Falmouth.
The Whitecaps kept their pattern of scoring once an inning in the fifth, as Jaime Ferrer (Florida State) doubled and Dylan Leach (Missouri State) notched an RBI single into center to score him, tying the game at 3-3.
It would not last long, however. Falmouth outfielder Gavin Turley (Oregon State) struck right back with a solo shot off reliever Brennan Phillips (Oklahoma State) in the top of the sixth to take a 4-3 lead and deflate the Whitecaps’ comeback effort.
Brewster tried to fight back, but the gusto had faded from its effort. Over the last four innings, the lineup could only muster two hits against Falmouth relievers Garrett Coe (Connecticut) and Cody Delvecchio (UCLA). Coe’s three scoreless innings earned him the win after he allowed soft contact and just one hit.
Bright spots seemed to be few and far between for the Brewster order, though D’Amato recorded three hits and Jared Jones (LSU) went 2-for-3 with a walk. The 6-foot, 4-inch Jones, who was highly touted as a power bat off a National Championship-winning team at LSU, struggled early with Brewster but his performance Tuesday continues a positive streak for the right-handed first baseman.
“These are very talented guys and it’s just really adjusting here, a conversation there,” Grimes said. “But it’s not overhauls or anything big like that.”
In the ninth, the final blow came as the Commodores pieced together three hits for four runs and extended their lead to 8-3 before closing out the game.
“We just didn’t get the hit when we needed to. I mean this could have been—we could have had 10 runs very quickly,” Grimes said.
Brewster stays home with an early 4 p.m. first pitch Wednesday evening, welcoming the Chatham Anglers into town for a crucial matchup between two teams battling for the last playoff spot in the East division.