My regular season opened in Brewster last night where Brewster tied Falmouth 2-2. Umpires called the game because of darkness after 10 innings even though it was only about a quarter to eight and they probably could have gotten another inning in.
Pitching dominated in a typical early-season Cape League game as hitters struggled to adjust to the wood bats and several big-name hitters on each team haven't arrived yet.
Two representatives from the New York Mets were at the game checking out their recent 15th-round pick RHP Casey Schmidt, who sat out all spring at the University of San Diego because of NCAA transfer rules and who also missed all of 2008 after offseason surgery.
Schmidt started for Brewster and looked good in five shutout innings. His stuff isn't overpowering but he has good command and can throw three different pitches for strikes. His fastball sat mostly in the 89-90 mph range and occasionally touched 91. His 76 mph curveball was about Cape-League average with a sweeping break and he also threw a 74-76 mph changeup.
Falmouth starter Mitch Mormann from Des Moines Area Community College dominated in four innings of no-hit ball, but his stuff really wasn't that impressive. He threw mostly all fastballs which sat in the 87-89 mph range and once hit 92. He occasionally spun a slider but it wasn't very good and he didn't seem to have much trust in it. Mormann's mechanics were inconsistent and he started to struggle with his control toward the end of his outing.
Falmouth right-handed reliever Shane Farrell from Marshall looked good, showing an 87-89 mph fastball with a very nice 79-81 mph slider with sharp, late-breaking action. He's a big kid at 6'6" and 230 lbs and it looks like he could throw harder because he tends to short-arm his pitches.
Brewster reliever Tyler Thornburg from Charleston Southern hit 95 on the radar gun, but his fastball is very flat and he left it up in the zone and the Falmouth hitters knocked him around. Thornburg blew a 2-0 lead in the top of the ninth in just three hitters and left with the game tied. He also displayed poor body language after giving up a double he thought the centerfielder should have tracked down.
Among the hitters, Brewster's Mark Canha from Cal-Berkeley was the most impressive. Canha broke up Falmouth's no-hitter with a bunt single with two outs in the sixth inning, then hit the only home run of the game on a deep drive to left in the bottom of the eighth. He did misplay a ball in right field, though that is not his natural position.
SS Jason Esposito from Vanderbilt and 3B Matt Skole from Georgia Tech were the best position players for Falmouth. Esposito ripped a double down the left field line and looked very smooth in the field with a strong arm. Skole has a power hitter's body and swings hard, and he also made a diving stop and showed a plus arm on a ground ball at third base.
AROUND THE LEAGUE
Yarmouth-Dennis 4-Orleans 3: RHP Chris Sale from Florida Gulf Coast, who I liked in his inning of relief in an exhibition game on Monday, started for Y-D and pitched six shutout innings with eight strikeouts.
Hyannis 4-Bourne 1: RHP Austin Hudson scattered five hits over six innings to get the win for Hyannis.
Cotuit at Harwich and Wareham at Chatham were postponed.