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Cape League Weekly Preview - Week Two

06/19/2023 11:21 AM

Article By: Daniel Curren

The 2023 Cape Cod Baseball League season is officially underway. The start of the 100th season for the historic league has been nothing short of electric with walk-offs, great pitching, and clean defensive plays from the nation’s best collegiate talent. With the first week of the season in the books, it is time to look ahead to week two.

The Kettle is Hot:

The Cotuit Kettleers have emerged as the top team on the Cape in the early goings of this year. Cotuit has won six of its first seven games and have already cemented a four point lead in the Western Division. The Kettleers are led by the best pitching in the league, and the best offense in the West. Their team ERA of 2.21 is the lowest in the Cape League by nearly a run and a half. Leading this charge is Isaiah Coupet (Ohio State) who has a 1.22 ERA in 7.1 innings with 11 strikeouts. Other dominant Cotuit pitchers include Camron Hill (Georgia Tech) who has thrown 6.1 scoreless innings with 11 strikeouts, and Noah Ruen (Kansas State) who has thrown 5.1 scoreless. On offense, Cotuit leads the West with a .750 OPS. They are led by Tanner Thach (North Carolina Wilmington) who has a .429 average and 1.508 OPS in 19 plate appearances. Other solid hitters for the Kettleers include Brett Bateman (Minnesota) who is hitting .429 with a 1.071 OPS in 26 plate appearances, and Jay Harry (Penn State) who is hitting .294 with a .900 OPS in 23 plate appearances.

East Races:

The Eastern Division remains a dead heat with three teams separated by one point and all five teams separated by five points. The Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox and Brewster Whitecaps are tied with nine points, each team with a record of 4-2-1. The Harwich Mariners are right behind with eight points and a record of 4-3. Trailing close behind are the Chatham Anglers (2-4-1) and the Orleans Firebirds (2-5).

Players to watch:

Will King (Yarmouth-Dennis/Eastern Kentucky)

King has been at the helm of a potent Y-D offense to start the year. He is slashing .474/.500/.526 for a 1.026 OPS in his first seven games of the season. He also has zero strikeouts in 19 at-bats thus far. He has the most ABs of all hitters that still haven’t struck out. The Red Sox catcher has driven in five runs and scored three.

Jamie Arnold (Hyannis/Florida State)

Arnold has been dominant in relief for the Harbor Hawks. The lefty has faced 17 batters across the three games he’s pitched, and has struck out 11 of them (64.7%). He has yet to walk a batter or allow a run in 4.2 innings pitched. He also has a WHIP of 0.64, and his 11 strikeouts are tied for the second most in the league.

Matchups to watch:

Brewster @ Harwich - Tuesday, June 20th

The Whitecaps and the Mariners sit one point apart in the Eastern DIvision standings with Brewster at nine and Harwich at eight. Statistically speaking, the two teams match up evenly. They are separated by only 0.05 in ERA (Brewster 3.98, Harwich 4.03) and .009 in OPS (Harwich .747, Brewster .738). This is the first time these two divisional foes will face off this year. They are set to face each other five times this year.

Cotuit @ Wareham - Saturday, June 24th

The top two teams will be facing off at Spillane Field for the first time this year. It will be the second matchup between these teams in 2023. Cotuit took the first game 3-2 on June 12th at Lowell Park. The Kettlers and Gatemen are currently tied with the most home runs in the Cape League at six dingers each. This is the second of six matchups between Cotuit and Wareham this season.