Yesterday, the Cape Cod Baseball League made official what everyone pretty much already knew. The All Star Game will be returning to Fenway Park on Wednesday, July 28. Let the "play it in Fenway / keep it on the Cape" debate begin anew. Number 2 Arizona State and sixth-ranked UCLA squeaked out wins last night, allowing both teams to maintain their undefeated seasons. The Sun Devils beat Oregon, 1-0. UCLA overcame a 5-3 deficit to top Stanford, 6-5 in ten innings. Both games featured strong contributions from Cape League players. For Arizona State (24-0), Drew Maggi (Orleans; '10) hit a homerun in the third inning to provide all the offense Seth Blair (Cotuit; '08, '09) would need. Blair (5-0) pitched 7 innings and gave up 5 hits without issuing a walk. Mitchell Lambson (Orleans; '10) pitched the eighth and Jordan Swagerty (Wareham; '09, '10) pitched a perfect ninth to earn his eighth save while lowering his ERA to 0.59 in the process. If you are ASU's Zach Wilson (Wareham; '09, '10) you know you are going well when you can go 1-3 in the game and see your average drop to .434. Oregon's Tyler Anderson was outstanding in defeat. He pitched a complete game four-hitter, struckout 10, and did not issue a walk. Unfortunately for Anderson, one of those four hits was Maggi's first homerun of the season.
In the Bruins (22-0) win, Tyler Rahmatulla (Chatham; '09, '10) lead the way on offense going 2-3 at the plate and scoring 3 runs. Rahmatulla is now batting .451. Closer Dan Klein (Chatham; '10) earned his second win by pitching a scoreless 1.2 innings. Klein has not given up a run this year and in 17.2 innings, he has struckout 26 while allowing just 3 walks.
By the way, those team rankings - which really don't mean much this time of year anyway - are from Baseball America. As usual, most of the national media focus is on the ACC and the SEC while the Pac-10 gets much less respect. Maybe that helps in part to explain why a Virginia team with four losses keeps their number one ranking ahead of these undefeated teams.
East Carolina's Dustin Harrington has been dismissed from the team. Citing the federal student privacy laws, no details will be given by the school. Harrington was a key member of this year's 23rd ranked team. At the time of the dismissal on Thursday, he was batting .443 with 5 HR and 21 RBI. Harrington batted .265 while playing in 37 games for Hyannis last summer.
Staying with East Carolina for a moment, 2009 Cape League regular season and playoff MVP Kyle Roller (Bourne) is presently batting .316 with 6 HR and 23 RBI for the Pirates. Roller has struckout 20 times in 79 official at-bats but the 28 free passes he has received are an indication that teams respect his power.
ESPN has announced the hiring of Doug Glanville as an analyst for the network. Glanville attended the University of Pennsylvania and played for the Wareham Gatemen before going on to have a productive nine year major league career with the Phillies, Cubs and Rangers. Now, if the Worldwide Leader would just get rid of the babbling Joe Morgan.
It doesn't happen often, but it is good to see members of the U.S. service academies get a chance to showcase their skills in the Cape League. This year, West Point infielder Clint Moore is expected to play for Harwich. Moore is batting .322 with 2 HR and 15 RBI for the Black Knights.
Hard to imagine a pitcher could hold opponents to a .213 batting average and have a respectable WHIP of 1.19 but have a 0-4 record and a 5.61 ERA to show for it. That's the situation Rice University lefthander Taylor Wall (Falmouth; '09, '10) found himself in heading into last night's game. Maybe Wall's luck is changing. He pitched a complete game one-hitter to go along with 7 strikeouts and 2 walks in leading the Owls over Houston, 6-0. After that performance, the opposition is now batting just .181 against Wall who was 3-3 with a 2.62 ERA for the Commodores in 2009. Michael Goodnight (Y-D; '09) was the losing pitcher for Houston.
Chase Parham reported on RebelGrove.com that Mississippi first baseman Matt Snyder (Brewster; '10) has dislocated a shoulder. Unfortunately, this is the second time Snyder has suffered this injury. Snyder has vowed to return to the Rebels this year and has said that he will attempt to postpone surgery until after the season. If that holds true, it is likely that we won't see the lefty slugger in a Whitecaps uniform this summer. Before going down with the injury, Snyder had started the first 13 games of the season for Ole Miss and was batting .333 with 3 HR, 11 RBI, an OBP of .509 and a slugging pct. of .643.
Useless Info Department: There are four Tyler's on the Hyannis Harbor Hawks - Mizenko (RHP, Winthrop), Ray (RHP, Troy), Thompson (OF, Florida) and Wilson (RHP, Virginia). No promises as to whether I will keep the Tyler's straight throughout the season but at least I typed "Harbor Hawks" and not "Mets."