Saturday, July 31, 2010

Tories 7 Generals 5

Matt Rogers got his second complete game win for Topsfield against Hamilton on friday night. Both Rogers and Hamilton starter Funchion looked great early until Hamilton got on the board with 1 in the fourth. Topsfield came back behind a key double from Allen Hatfield (1/4 / 2B / 2RBI) to take the lead. Doug Hittinger also contributed going 2/3 with 1RUN and 1RBI. Hamilton threatened in the end, however Rogers picked a great time to record his only 2 strikeouts in the top of the seventh to hold on for a Tories win. Provost was 3/4 with a double and a run scored for Hamilton in the loss.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Mariners 4 - Rams 3

Mariners 4 Rams 3 Manchester/Essex bounced back against Rowley to win in dramatic fashion 4-3 last night in Essex. The Mariners recieved a gutsy pitching performance from Lucas DaSilva (7IP 3ER 3H 3K 4BB) but it would have been wasted if not for the 7th inning heroics of allstar center fielder Rory Gentile. After Jeremy Nicastro (2-3) led off the home half of the 7th with a single up the middle, Gentile stepped to the plate with the Mariners trailing 3-2. Gentile wasted no time as he blasted his 4th homerun of the year to center and sealed the Mariners Victory.

Rowley was led by Dave Mariani who hit 2 Homeruns and Sloban who went the distance on the hill (6+ IP 3K 0BB 4ER). Rowley also recieved some solid defense from their shortstop, Conte. Nate Bertolino hit his 4th HR in 5 games and Charlie Choate (1-3; 2B) had an outfield assist from deep left center.

Manchester/Essex improves to 14-5-2 and remains in first place by just 2 points, while Rowley falls to 11-9-1. However, the Rams have all but clinched their second straight playoff apearence under Manager Jeff Wood. The Mariners return to the field on Monday in Topsfield.

Generals over Tories

Hamilton defeated Topsfield by a score of 12-6 on Thursday night at Patton Park.  Jeff Jensen earned the victory with a complete game effort yielding just five hits while striking out six.  Zack Lampkin was charged with the loss for the Tories, but pitched better than the score would suggest, as he struck out seven Generals batters in his five innings of work.
The Generals jumped out to a 2-0 lead after one inning.  Rookie sensation Jim Love led off the game with a single, stole second and scored on a RBI single by Jim Maloney.  Maloney would score later in the inning on a wild pitch.  Topsfield responded in a big way by putting up six runs in the top of the second.  After Gallugi walked with one out, Heath launched a two run bomb into the pond to knot the score at two.  The Tories took a 3-2 lead on a wild pitch and extended their lead to 6-2 when Andrew Dyer connected for a three run homer to left.
Hamilton then fought back with five runs in the third to reclaim a 7-6 lead.  After Bryan Vitale and Mark Ruggerio walked, stud rightfielder Michael Drinkwater delivered an RBI single cutting the Topsfield lead to 6-3.  Judd Funchion, last seen on a milk carton as the subject of a missing person alert, followed with a two run single bringing the Generals within one.  After tying the game on another wild pitch, the Generals took the lead on a Mark Provost RBI single.
Justin Tilley delivered an RBI single pushing the Generals’ lead to 8-6 in the fourth.  Topsfield was able to escape further damage when a squeeze play went awry and Lampkin recorded a big strikeout to end another threat.  However, Hamilton added four more in the fifth to go ahead 12-6.  After the first three batters of the inning reached base, Vitale contributed an RBI single in his return to action.  Ruggerio followed with a two run single to left.  On the play, pinch runner Nails Simmons was able to motor home all the way from first base on an error, resulting in three runs scoring and putting the lead at 12-6 for Hamilton.
Meanwhile, Jensen settled down nicely and shutout the Tories over the final five frames.  Giraffe’s curveball kept the hitters off balance most of the night and he was aided by some fine defensive plays.  Provost robbed Doug Hittinger of a would be solo HR in the third, Drinkwater played a stellar rightfield and Ruggerio was flawless at first base.
Dyer and Heath led the Topsfield offense with their second inning HRs.  Love wowed the Generals faithful with a three hit effort and was joined by Funchion, who also notched three hits.  Maloney and Drinkwater had two hits apiece and Reggie Maidment reached base three times with a HBP, walk and single.  Drinkwater put on a base running exhibition, displaying raw speed, agility and extraordinary athleticism.  Acting manager Jered Stewart picked up his first career managing win from the bench filling in for Tom Jones.
The two teams will face off again tomorrow night at Proctor Field in Topsfield at 5:45pm.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Rams 10 - Mariners 1

The Rams picked up the win at Eiras Field behind another strong outing from Nick Liguori in a complete game effort. Gibbon took the loss for Manchester/Essex. Offensively for the Rams, Renzulli and Chris Esposito had 3 hits each while Conte, Mariani and Luisi added multi hit games. Offensively for the Mariners, Gentile and Ray had 2 hits each. The 2 teams are back at it tomorrow night in Essex.

Rockport 10 Beverly 5

More details to follow...

Makeup Games Rescheduled

Tuesday night's game at Essex between the Rowley Rams and Manchester/Essex Mariners was postponed due to a water main break in Essex. That game has been rescheduled for Thursday July 29th at 5:45pm at Memorial Park in Essex. The Rams and Mariners are still playing tonight's game in Rowley (Eiras Park) at 5:45pm as well.

Last Friday's rainout between the Topsfield Tories and Mariners has now been rescheduled for Monday August 2nd, 5:45pm at Proctor Field in Topsfield.

Generals Over Giants, 12-7

Connor Sullivan got the win in 6 innings of work for the Generals. Rocky Pisa is charged with the loss for the Giants. Beverly got on the board first with a solo HR from Erik Drown in the the top of the second. The lead didn't last long as the Generals answered with 5 in the bottom half and two more in the third. Provost, Potter, and Maidment all delivered RBI's in the second. Love got a sac-fly in the third.

Beverly got two more in the fourth, Barracelli delivered an RBI single. The Generals got one in each of the next two to extend the lead to 9-3. Avon Stewart got an RBI double and Provost an RBI fielder's choice. In the sixth Beverly got 4 runs to cut the lead to 2 runs. Nick Adams got a huge 3-run HR to help the Giants' cause. That was as close as they'd come as the Generals put up a 3 spot in the bottom of the sixth to put the game away. Drinkwater pitched an impressive seventh to end the game.

Barracelli had 3 hits to lead the Giants. Drown and Adams contributed HR's. For the Generals, O'Leary and Jensen each had a multi-hit game. Potter and Provost each had 2 RBI's.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Townies over Chiefs 10-2

Townies jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead after two innings and never looked back on its way to a 10-2 victory over the Chiefs Tuesday night at Evans Field.

Derek Osmond went the distance with 4k's, 1BB, while allowing 2 runs on 5 hits. The Townie offense was paced by Brent Currier 2-3 (HR, 2 rbis, 2rs), Dan Greel 2-2 (2 rbis, rs), Conor Ressel (3rs), and the return of Brock Currier 2-3 (2B, rbi).

For the Chiefs, Durning led the way going 2-2 (HR, 2b, 2rs) and Doucette recorded the loss on the mound.

Ipswich 12 - Rockport 3

Ipswich was able to grab the first of back to back games with a great pitching performance by Kevin Michael. He pitched a complete game scattering 8 hits with 6 K's over 7 innings. The Ipswich offense was fueled by Dave Shoreman (3-4, 2B, 3RBI, 2R) while Ant Hernadez and Ryan Montecalvo had two hits each. Dylan Durning was a welcomed addition to the line-up making a diving catch in left, throwing out a runner at second, and scoring 4 runs.

The Chiefs face off tonight against Rockport at 6:30 under the lights and try to keep their slim playoff hopes alive.

Legends Baseball clinic set for next week at Boudreau Field

Baseball clinic set for next week at Boudreau Field
By Jason Brisbois/
Posted Jul 21, 2010 @ 08:07 PM

With the spring and summer months seemingly chock full of baseball camps, clinics, practices and games, one would think that come late July there would be a bit of burnout when it comes to the sport.

It’s precisely at this point that Legends Baseball has created something unique and refreshing for local youths interested in continuing to develop their skills in the sport. Bryan Lafata, Manchester-Essex Mariners coach and former Gloucester Legion coach, is working with Legends Baseball to host clinics this week at Sweeney Park in Manchester, and next week at Boudreau Field in Gloucester, July 26-30.

What this clinic offers that others may not are unique instructors. Former Red Sox player Steve Lomasney joins current Legends AAU coaches Lafata and Dave and Mike Constantino as the driving force behind the clinic. The North Shore Navigators — in a league that features professional prospects from Baylor, Boston College, Clemson and University of Florida — will also provide guest instructors.

“What you’re getting here are four guys who run the whole program, full-time baseball guys who have played at a high level in college baseball, or professional,” explains Lafata. “We’ve got Ipswich’s Matt Small, who pitches for the Braves but is on the DL right now, coming in. We have the North Shore Navigators out of Lynn, one of the better wooden-bat leagues in the country. These are good college baseball players who are probably getting drafted in the near future, who are instructors at a lot of these camps.”

Cost is $110 for ages 5-7, with the clinic running from 9 a.m. to noon, while cost is $150 for ages 7-12, with the clinic running from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information or to register, e-mail Bryan at or call 978-767-9220.

Mariners keep pace with Generals at top of ITL standings

Mariners keep pace with Generals at top of ITL standings
By Jason Brisbois/
Posted Jul 21, 2010 @ 08:04 PM

After leading the Intertown Twilight League for most of the regular season, the Mariners now find themselves chasing another team for first place, albeit very closely.

Hamilton has gone on a tear lately, and is now just ahead of Manchester-Essex in the standings, its 12-5 record standing ahead of the Mariners’ 12-4-2 record due to head-to-head matchups going in the Generals’ favor. Tuesday’s 9-4 victory over Topsfield helped the Mariners keep pace, with hopes of overtaking the Generals before the regular season ends in a couple of weeks.

There’s plenty of reason to think Manchester-Essex can certainly keep pace with Hamilton. First of all were some of the Mariners’ performances on the field Tuesday night. Mike Gibbon started and pitched six strong innings, Ryan Marques notched a save and Rory Gentile hit a grand slam. That’s three regulars hitting on all cylinders at the right time of year.

Throw in the fact that a number of key players are now more available than they were earlier in the summer, and things are looking rosy for Manchester-Essex.

“Tonight, we had Brett Cahill, who’s now done with Legion ball,” said Manchester-Essex player/coach Bryan Lafata. “He’ll be here more often now. Nate Bertolino, the ITL MVP last year and one of the better players in the league, is back after a back injury. He hit two homeruns in his first game back.”

This also gives Lafata more roster flexibility as the postseason approaches.

“We’re starting to see more guys show up, which means we’ve had more of a bench,” explained Lafata. “It’s nice to see. With six games left, we’re going to try to get everybody back into the rhythm of playing with each other and get ready for the playoffs.”

That remaining six-game slate starts with Friday’s game against Topsfield, includes two games against struggling Rowley and a season-ending series that could have major postseason implications against Hamilton.

“Topsfield is playing good baseball, they’ve got some good young players,” said Lafata. “Earlier in the year, Topsfield was a team where you could just show up. Now, we can’t go out there thinking we could just show up and win. We’ve got to go out and play the game. We’ve got six left. Two are against Rowley, who surprisingly is struggling this year after making the playoffs as a young team last year. We’ve also got Hamilton to end the season. It always seems to come down to playoff spots and seeding. This will be a big series, I’m sure.”

Hamilton Generals take nine of last 10 in ITL

Hamilton Generals take nine of last 10 in ITL
By Dom Nicastro / Correspondent
Posted Jul 21, 2010 @ 01:28 PM

When you're hot, you're hot.

And when you’re hot in the case of the Hamilton Intertown Baseball League, that means you’re also in first place.

The Generals won nine of 10 heading into the middle part of this week and sat on top of the league standings with a 12-5 mark. Technically there were tied with defending champion Manchester/Essex with 24 points apiece, but the Mariners had fewer wins (11) and a pair of ties. The Generals own the tiebreaker over the Mariners at this point. Hamilton missed the playoffs last summer.

“We’ve been getting great pitching along with timely hitting,” Hamilton player/manager Tom Jones said. “Our biggest strength so far this year has been our depth. We’ve been able to mix in everybody to the lineup, and everyone has been able to contribute in some way. We really have enough numbers this year for two starting teams. The lineup changes every day, but no matter who is in there they have been doing what they need to help the team win. We are able to put a lot of pressure on other teams with our depth as well.”

Connor Sullivan pitched Hamilton to its latest victory Monday night, a 9-3 decision over Ipswich. The Chiefs are in last place while Rockport (third place) and Rowley (fourth) currently occupy the final two playoff spots.

Jim Maloney (three-run) and Mark Provost each blasted home runs for the Generals against Ipswich, and Bryan Vitale contributed two RBI for the Generals. The Generals jumped out to an early 6-0 lead and never looked back.

That win came on the heels of a sweep of Rowley in back-to-back games for the resurgent Generals.

Sullivan again earned the victory, and Jim Love was called upon in relief for the Generals for the second straight night, this time earning the 1.2 inning save.

Hamilton got on the board first scoring two in the first after getting the rally going with two outs and nobody on. Vitale delivered the clutch two-RBI double, scoring Maloney and Jered Stewart. The Generals tacked on another in the second on a Reggie Maidment RBI single.

Stewart led off the fifth with a huge homer to left-center to bump the Generals lead back to two. That is all they could manage as the Rams later got out of a another bases loaded jam with some nice defense keeping the score 4-2.

In the bottom half of the fifth, the Rams were threatening to tie the game. With two on and only one out, Love entered the game and induced a first-pitch double play. Stewart snagged a line drive off the bat of Ralph Renzuli and was able to double off the runner at second.

In the seventh the Rams were able to work the tying run to first, but Love shut the door and got a fly to center to end the game.

In the previous game against Rowley, Stewart’s infield single induced a wild throw, allowing Maidment to score the winning run in a the last inning of a 12-11 Hamilton victory.

Jeff Jensen pitched a complete game for the win.

The Generals trailed, 3-0, until Justin Tilley got an RBI double, Maidment a two-RBI single, and Maloney an RBI double that scored two for a five-run Generals rally.

The Generals extended its lead with six more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning, thanks to Vitale’s RBI single and a grand slam by Avon Stewart.

Rowley almost completed a mammoth comeback by tying it with eight runs in the seventh, but Hamilton again came up with last-inning heroics.

Maidment, Ruggiero, Tilley, and Love all had multi-hit games for the Generals.

Intertown Twilight League standings


Hamilton 12-5 (24 points)

Manchester/Essex 11-4-2 (24)

Rockport 9-7 (18)

Rowley 7-8-1 (15)

Topsfield 6-8-1 (13)

Beverly 5-11-1 (11)

Ipswich 5-11-1 (11)

Ipswich Chiefs at a glance

Ipswich Chiefs at a glance
By Staff reports
Posted Jul 22, 2010 @ 05:04 PM

Record: 5-11-1 (Tied/6th)

Upcoming games:

Thurs., July 22: Ipswich at Hamilton, 5:45 p.m.

Sun., July 25: Ipswich at Rockport, 6 p.m.

Mon., July 26: Rockport at Ipswich, 5:45 p.m.

Recent games:

July 19: Hamilton 9, Ipswich 3

Connor Sullivan picked up the win for the Generals, going five innings, allowing only three runs on five hits.

Kevin Michael started for the Chiefs, going six innings and recording 10 strikeouts, but was charged with the loss.

The Generals got a solo HR from Mark Provost in the first to break the ice. The Generals extended the lead with five more runs in the second.

The Chiefs got on the board with two in the bottom of the third to cut the lead to 6-2. Ant Hernandez got an RBI double to left that was followed by a Ryan Montecalvo RBI single.

In the fifth, the Generals extended the lead to 9-2. Jim Maloney hit a big bases loaded single that landed just over the left fielder’s glove that scored two. Bryan Vitale got a RBI sac-fly to finish out the Generals scoring.

Michael delivered a sac-fly in the bottom of the fifth to give the Chiefs their third run. Cam Charette came in to pitch two scoreless innings and seal the victory for the Generals.

Montecalvo had three hits to lead the Chiefs offense. The Generals had four players with multi-hit games. Jim Maloney stood out with five RBIs, Vitale added two RBIs and Jered Stewart contributed three hits and a walk.

July 16: Topsfield 7, Ipswich 2

Chiefs among first half statistical leaders:

Batting Average:

Bryan Lafata - Manchester/Essex, .529

Dave Shoreman – Ipswich, .500

Dylan Durning - Ipswich, .500


Mike Cain - Manchester/Essex, 4

Dave Shoreman - Ipswich, 3

John Boyle – Beverly, 3

Bryan Vitale – Hamilton, 3

Brent Currier - Rockport, 3

Charlie Coate - Manchester/Essex, 3

Intertown Twilight League: Beverly 4, Manchester 4

Intertown Twilight League: Beverly 4, Manchester 4

Posted Jul 23, 2010 @ 01:16 PM

Beverly and Manchester were fit to be tied in Intertown Twilight League action Thursday night, battling to a 4-4 stalemate.

Trailing 4-2 with two outs and nobody on, the Manchester Mariners (10-4-2) staged a seventh inning rally capped by Mike MacFarland’s RBI single. The slugger ended the evening going 3-for-4 with two RBI.

One extra frame was played, before play was called following a scoreless inning.

The game was a pitcher’s duel for most of the night with Beverly’s Joe Gilll locking horns with Manchester hurler Mike Gibbon. Gill threw six solid innings, scattering five hits, two walks and two runs, while striking out five. Gibbon tossed six innings, surrendering nine hits, a walk and four runs, while faning six.

The Beverly Giants (5-9-1) offense was paced by Erik Drown (3-for-4), Kevin Harutunian (3-for-4, 2 SB), and John Boyle (1-for-4, HR, 3RBI).

Rowley - 12, Beverly - 9

Beverly scored 5 runs in the bottom of the 5th to take a 9 to 5 lead but Rowley put up 7 runs in the 7th inning for the come from behind victory...

Friday, July 23, 2010

Tories & Mariners Rained Out Friday Night

Friday's game, scheduled at Proctor Field in Topsfield, was rained out. Once a make up date is determined it will be posted on the ITL Blog.

Rowley at Beverly Postponed

Game called due to rain. Second time this game has been postponed. New date TBA.

Chiefs Come From Behind Winners Over Generals

Tom Radzim celebrated his birthday in style, leading the Ipswich Chiefs to victory last night at Patton Park. The Chiefs broke a 3-3 tie in the seventh putting up 5 runs to seal the game. Radzim delivered the big hit, a bases loaded double to break the tie. Doucette pitched a complete game to earn the victory. The Generals couldn't take advantage of the few opportunities they had, never getting a big rally going. The Chiefs put up 7 runs in the final two innings, winning the game 8-4.

Kevin Michael stood out for the Chiefs with an all around great game. He contributed 3 hits, 1 Run, 4 RBI, and 4 Stolen Bases.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Mariners 5 - Chiefs 0

The Manchester/Essex Mariners defeated the Ipswich Chiefs last night by a score of 6-0, thus sweeping the regular season meetings with the Chiefs. The Mariners relied heavily on Steve Stout (5-0) who tossed a 3-hit shutout for the visitors’ racking up a total of 6 strikeouts.The M’s got on the board immediately as Brett Cahill drove in Alex Ray (2-2) who led off the game with a single. The scoring continued in the 3rd when Mike Cain (2-4, 2 RBI) and Ian Buckley (2-3, 2 RBI) both plated 2 runners. Nate Bertolino (2-3) finished the scoring in the last inning with his 3rd home run in as many games.Ryan Montecalvo, Kevin Michael, and Kevin Smolla all hit safely for the Chiefs.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Rams 8 - Townies 1

Details to follow...........

Mariners beat Tories, 5-4

no details yet....

Townies Over Generals, 9-6

Brent Currier blasted two HR's and contributed 5 RBI to lead the Townies to victory at Patton Park. Both Emersons pitched well for the visitors earning the win. The Generals fought back until the end but came up short this time, Jeff Jensen is charged with his first loss of the season.

Brent Currier started the scoring with a solo HR in the first. The Townies extended the lead with a 6 run third. Osmond got an RBI single that was followed by a Currier 3-Run HR. Robertson and Folger also delivered RBI hits.

The Generals got on the board in the bottom of the third thanks to a Mark Provost solo HR. The Townies answered with 2 more in the top of the fourth. Sharon & Currier both with a RBI singles putting the Townies lead at 9-1. As the game started to wind down, that's when things began to get interesting. Tim O'Leary got a 2-run HR in the sixth to cut the lead to 9-3. In the seventh Maloney led off with a single and was moved to second on a Vitale HBP. Ruggiero then got an RBI single to make the score 9-4. Tim O'Leary was next up and delivered again, this time with a 3-run HR cutting the score to 9-7 with only one out.

Upon crossing the plate the umpire made O'Leary run the bases again causing much confusion. The umpires then met and discussed the play. When play resumed the Townies appealed to first base, at this point the batter was called out for missing a base the first time around. This play was unprecedented and very controversial at the time. When everything settled down the play stood as scoring two runs with the batter being called out. This made the score 9-6, now with 2 outs in the inning. The Townies were able to record the final out and end the game in victory, foiling a Generals comeback.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Rams' Sloban Pitches No Hitter, Rowley wins 7-1

Mike Sloban of the Rowley Rams no hit the Beverly Giants tonight at Eiras Field. Sloban(7IP, 0H, 3BB, 5K's) was outstanding, retiring the first 7 batters of the game before issuing the first of 3 walks on the night. Gill started for Beverly and was up to the challenge as the game entered the bottom of the 5th at 2-1 Rowley, the Rams were able to push across 5 in the bottom of the 5th and gave Sloban some breathing room. For the Rams offense Conte, Bolla and Moore all had multi hit games. The no hitter was not without a bit of controversy as the Rowley scorebook had ruled an error on the 2B back in the 3rd inning while Beverly had listed it as a hit. Regardless of which side you come down on it was an impressive outing for Mike, who had been a tough luck pitcher all season and earned his first ITL win tonight. Rowley is back at it tomorrow at Eiras against Rockport while Beverly is off until Friday when they host the Rams in a makeup game.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Generals Over Chiefs, 9-3

Connor Sullivan picked up the win for the Generals going 5 innings allowing only 3 runs on 5 hits. Kevin Michael started for the Chiefs going 6 innings and recording 10 K's! but was charged with the loss. The Generals got a solo HR from Mark Provost in the first to break the ice. The Generals extended the lead with 5 more runs in the second. With two on and one out, Jim Love got an RBI single. Two batters later the Generals got a 3-run HR from Jim Maloney. Bryan Vitale also contributed a RBI single to put the Generals up 6-0 after two.

The Chiefs got on the board with two in the bottom of the third to cut the lead to 6-2. Hernandez got an RBI double to left that was followed by a Montecalvo RBI single. In the fifth the Generals extended the lead to 9-2. Jim Maloney hit a big bases loaded single that landed just over the leftfielder's glove that scored two. Bryan Vitale got a RBI sac-fly to finish out the Generals scoring. Michael delivered a sac-fly in the bottom of the fifth to give the Chiefs their third run. Cam Charette came in to pitch two scoreless innings and seal the victory for the Generals. The two teams face off again this Thursday at Patton, but not before the Generals host Rockport in a makeup tonight. Both start at 5:45pm.

Montecalvo had 3 hits to lead the Chiefs offense. The Generals had four players with multi-hit games. Jim Maloney stood out with 5 RBI, Vitale added 2 RBI, & Jered Stewart contributed 3 hits and a BB.

Rowley 9 Rockport 2

Rowley beat Rockport 9-2 on a hot and humid Sunday at Evans Field in Rockport.

More details to follow...

Manchester - 12, Beverly - 10

Beverly led 6 to 5 through 4 innings but Manchester erupted for 6 runs in the fifth inning to take a lead they wouldn't give up.

The Mariner offense was led by Nate Bertolino (2 for 4, 2HR, 2RBI), Mike Cain (2 for 3, HR, 2B, 2RBI), Ian Buckley (1 for 4, HR), and Charlie Choate (3 for 5, 3B, 2B).

Beverly was led by John Boyle (3 for 5, HR, 3B, 4RBI), Kevin Harutunian (3 for 5), Derek Scialdone (3 for 5, 2B, 2RBI), and Conor Walsh (3 for 5, 2R).

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Tories 7 Chiefs 2

Shon O'Leary threw a complete game to earn his first win as a member of the Topsfield Tories. Topsfield also had a great night at the plate with an rbi single from Driscoll in the first to set the tone for the game. Ben Hathaway also had a great day at the plate. Topsfield will travel to Manchester next week

Friday, July 16, 2010

Rockport 10 Beverly 3

Rockport beat Beverly 10-3 Friday night in Rockport. More details to follow...

In the News....

"Mariners retain first-place in ITL after going 2-1 against Townies"
By Jason Brisbois/
Cape Ann Beacon

Tuesday’s game between the Mariners and Townies was a microcosm of how things have tended to go between these two Intertown Twilight League franchises over the past few years.

Like most series between the Manchester-Essex and Rockport teams, this game featured multiple lead changes, gutsy pitching performances, key hitting, some missed opportunities, multiple lead changes and yet another close game.

And, as things ended in the 2009 ITL finals between the two teams, Manchester-Essex ended up victorious when everything was said and done.

“They’re our number one rival,” Rockport player/coach Jeremy Spittle said after Tuesday’s 5-3 loss to Manchester-Essex. “It’s always been that way, and it will always be that way. They’re the defending champions and they’re the team to beat until somebody beats them.”

The Mariners not only won the game, they also split Sunday’s doubleheader with Rockport at Evans Field (Rockport took game one, 8-2, while Manchester-Essex won game two in a 16-10 barnburner). This gives the M’s a 3-1 record against the Townies during the regular season, something that could be important down the line once playoff seeds come into play. As it stands now, going 2-1 over the last week against Rockport gives the Mariners a 10-4-1 record, and drops the Townies to 8-6, behind first-place Manchester-Essex and second-place Hamilton.

“To a point, it lets you know you can beat them,” said Manchester-Essex player/coach Bryan Lafata. “But if we play them again in the playoffs, you know it’s always a good series. They also know they can beat us, so it’s not too much of a psychological edge because you know you have to play your best baseball to beat them.”

The Mariners did just that in Tuesday’s victory, coming back from a 3-0 deficit to take a 5-3 lead, while pitchers Lucas DaSilva, Charlie Choate (who got the save) and Matt Hildebrandt combined to stave off a hungry Rockport offense that loaded the bases three times in the game, only to come up empty.

“Those are three guys who haven’t gotten a lot of innings,” Lafata said of his trio of pitchers. “It’s nice to get a win versus a team like that, and use some of our lesser-used pitchers.”

Mike MacFarland, Rory Gentile and Chris Maki provided key hits for the M’s (MacFarland smacked a solo homer that provided the Mariners with an insurance run). Meanwhile, Derek Osmond put in a gutsy performance on the mound for Rockport.

“I’ve got to give credit to Derek Osmond,” explained Spittle. “He gave up five runs, but he pitched his heart out. He pitched the second game Sunday, and pitched the whole game today. They got some runs, but for the last couple of innings he kept us in the game. We just missed some opportunities on offense. I can think of three times we had the bases loaded, but didn’t get that one hit we need in those situations.”

The series, which went 2-1 in favor of the Mariners, executed an about-face in fortunes for both teams. Rockport was the hot team going into Sunday’s doubleheader, winning three in a row and breathing down Manchester-Essex’s neck. The Mariners had just broken a three-game losing streak before toppling Ipswich prior to Sunday.

The Mariners are hoping it’s a sign of things to come for them.

“When you beat teams like Ipswich and Rockport, who are good every year, it’s a big confidence booster for us,” said Lafata. “If we can carry this momentum for a week or two, we could clinch a playoff spot early and take some weight off our backs.”

The Townies, on the other hand, are looking forward to the next game (Rockport plays Beverly on Friday, a day after the Mariners are scheduled to take on the Giants) as a means of putting this series behind them.

“We’re trying to take it on a game-to-game basis,” said Spittle. “Maybe we hit a bit of a roadblock, but I think we’ll be okay. Now, we’re starting again, resetting for Friday at home versus Beverly. They’ve lost seven straight, but we can’t take any game lightly. We have to take it one game at a time.”

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Beverly and Manchester tie, 4 to 4

Manchester took a 1 to 0 lead in the bottom of the second on Nicastro's RBI double. There would be no more scoring until the 6th inning as Mike Gibbon and Joe Gill locked horns in a pitcher's duel.

In the top of the 6th, Beverly got a 3 run homer from John Boyle before Erik Drown scored on a wild pitch to give the Giants a 4 to 1 lead. In the bottom of the 6th Manchester scored a run on a Hillenbrand RBI double to cut the lead to 4 to 2.

Steve Stout pitched a scoreless top of the 7th. In the bottom of the 7th, the Mariners had two out with no baserunners before staging a rally off Erik Drown to tie the game. Gibbon singled, Choate doubled, and MacFarland brought them home with another single to tie it.

Stout and Sean Martin each pitched a scoreless 8th and the game ended in a tie.

Gibbon (6IP, 4R, 9H, 1BB, 6K) and Gill (6IP, 2R, 5H, 1BB, 1HBP, 5K) both pitched well. For Manchester, MacFarland was 3 for 4 with 2RBI to lead the offense. The Giants were led by Erik Drown (3 for 4, R), Kevin Harutunian (3 for 4, 2SB) and Boyle (1 for 4, HR, 3RBI)

Rams Battle Back, but Generals Walk Off Again

The Rams faced an 11-3 deficit heading into the 7th but battled back. After all the dust settled and the numbers were crunched, it was determined that the Rams had indeed tied the game at 11. The Generals had last ups and got to work once again. The Generals managed another rally in the bottom half, got a run and earned another walk off win. Jeff Jensen pitched a complete game for the win. The Generals move to 11-5 on the season and currently sit a top the ITL standings just ahead of the M/E Mariners because of the tie-breaker scenarios.

The Rams broke out of the gate first with 3 unearned runs in the first. The Generals played some shaky defense in the beginning committing 4 straight errors. Markam got a RBI single. The score remained 3-0 until the bottom of the fourth inning when the Generals scored 5. Tilley got an RBI double, Maidment a 2-RBI single to tie the game, and Maloney pushed the Generals ahead with a 2-RBI double making the score 5-3 after four complete.

The Generals extended their lead with 6 more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Bryan Vitale had an RBI single and Avon Stewart launched a Grand Slam to left pushing the score to 11-3. The Generals had a nice cushion heading into the last frame looking for just 3 more outs.

The Rams would not go quietly, however, and erupted for 8 runs in the top of the 7th. Luisi led off with a single, then the Generals managed a fly ball out. A BB, four singles in a row, a fly out, and another RBI single followed cutting the lead to 11-8. With two on and two out Luisi stepped to plate for the second time in the inning. He was able to get a monster 3-run HR into the willow tree to tie the game. Jensen recorded the final out via strikeout. There was a bit of confusion at the end about the actual score but after comparing scorebooks the game was indeed tied at 11-11.

In the bottom of the seventh Maidment led off with yet another HBP. The Rams were then able to record two quick outs. Familiar face in these situations, Jim Maloney, was up next and managed a BB putting the winning run on second base. Jered Stewart then put up a great at bat and put the ball in play with two strikes. Stewart hit a ball into a tough spot in between short and third and was able to beat out an infield single. On the play the throw got away which allowed Maidment to score the winning run.

Maidment, Ruggiero, Tilley, & Love all had multi-hit games for the Generals. Markam contributed 2 hits and Luisi 3 including the HR to pace the Rams offense. The Generals swept the season series with the Rams and could only meet again this season in a playoff scenario.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Generals Over Rams, 4-2

The Hamilton Generals were able to outlast the Rowley Rams tonight at Erias Field in Rowley in a shortened 6 inning game. Connor Sullivan got the win for the Generals putting them at 10-5 on the season. Sloban pitched a complete game for the Rams but was charged with the loss 6-7-1. Jim Love was called upon in relief for the Generals for the second straight night, this time earning the 1 2/3 inning save.

Hamilton got on the board first scoring two in the first after getting the rally going with 2 outs and nobody on. Vitale delivered the clutch 2-RBI double scoring Maloney and J. Stewart (from first). The Generals tacked on another in the second on a Maidment RBI single.

Rowley was able to get to Sullivan in the fourth inning with two runs. Esposito scored on the back end of an errant throw. Bolla was able to hustle all the way to third on the play which payed off for another run as Luisi brought him home on a sac-fly. The Rams cut the lead to 3-2 after four complete.

Jered Stewart led off the fifth with a huge HR to left center to bump the Generals' lead back to two. That is all they could manage as the Rams later got out of a another bases loaded jam with some nice defense keeping the score 4-2. In the bottom half of the fifth, the Rams were threatening to tie the game. With two on and only one out, Love entered the game and induced a first pitch double play. J. Stewart snagged a line drive off the bat Renzuli and was able to double off the runner at second. In the seventh the rams were able to work the tying run to first, but Love shut the door and got a fly to center to end the game.

The two teams meet yet again tomorrow night to complete the regular season series. Game time is 5:45pm at Patton Park. Vitale and O'Leary had mulit-hit games for the Generals while Stewart scored twice and added the HR. The Rams offense was led by White and Ligouri who each had a double, and Luisi had an RBI. The Rams had 8 total hits and left 8 runners. The Generals had 10 hits and left 10.

First Half Leaders


Bryan Lafata Man/Ess .529

Dave Shoreman Ipswich .500

D. Durning Ipswich .500

Matt Sharon Rockport .474

Rory Gentile Man/Ess .444


Mike Cain Man/Essex 4

Dave Shoreman Ipswich 3

John Boyle Beverly 3

Bryan Vitale Hamilton 3

Brent Currier Rockport 3

Charlie Coate Man/Essex 3


Charlie Coate Man/Essex 18

Mike Cain Man/Essex 17

Bryan Vitale Hamilton 15

John Boyle Beverly 12

Jim Maloney Hamilton 12

Brent Currier Rockport 12


Brandon Bell Man/Essex 1.29

Brent Currier Rockport 1.50

Mike Gibbons Man/Essex 1.56

Matt Sharon Rockport 2.66

Steve Stout Man/Essex 2.78

Generals / Maloney Walk-Off Winners over Rams

The Generals scratched out another wild finish last night at Patton Park beating the Rams 10-9 in walk-off fashion. Jim Maloney delivered for the second time in as many games with a walk-off 2-RBI single in the bottom of the seventh. Jim Love recorded the win in relief of Mike Drinkwater in his ITL pitching debut. Martin started for the Rams and pitched well but did not figure in the decision. Dave Leavitt also pitched well in relief but was the tough luck loser. This game had a little bit of everything on both sides: defensive gems, a few miscues, questionable calls, HR's, great pitching, and a wild finish. Just another night of ITL baseball.

Rowley struck first and held a lead for most of the game with 3 runs in the first. Mariani picked up an RBI on a fielder's choice that plated Ligouri which was followed by an Esposito 2-RBI single. Hamilton got 1 back in the bottom half on a Ruggiero sac-fly to left. The Rams extended their lead with two more in the second thanks to a Bolla 2-out 2-RBI single. The Generals returned with 3 in the bottom half cutting the Ram lead to 5-4. Jim Love got an RBI single then later scored all the way from first on an errant throw that plated two. The Generals tied the score at 5's in the bottom of the third thanks to a Reggie Maidment double that just dropped down the right field line.

The Rams came right back and pushed their lead back to 3. In the 4th Mariani got another RBI single. In the fifth Barba delivered a huge 2-run HR making the score 8-5 Rams. Jered Stewart got one back for the Generals with a solo-HR in the bottom of the fifth, but Bolla answered the call with a solo-HR of his own for the Rams in the 6th. The Generals escaped the sixth without anymore damage thanks to a terrific catch by Provost and throw to first to get a double play to end the inning. With the score 9-6 the Generals managed one more in the bottom of the sixth. With the bases loaded and in a tough spot the Rams delivered with a nifty 1-2-3 double play to end the inning and the threat leaving the score 9-7 heading into the final frame.

In the final half of the seventh Jones beat out an infield hit to start the inning. Jered Stewart was next up and put in a tremendous bid to tie the game. His towering shot to left was stabbed over the fence by Bolla in an unbelievable play. The diving play over the fence saved a HR and gave the Rams the first out of the inning. The next batter struck out leaving a runner on second with two outs. After an HBP, Love got a single to right, Jones scored on a bobbled ball cutting the lead to one. Provost followed with a BB loading the bases with two outs. Maloney then hit a hard one down the line to left scoring two and giving the Generals the win.

The two teams meet again tonight in Rowley and then again on Thursday back at Patton. Based on the first two meetings, the next two should come right down to the wire. 5:45pm game times for both games.

Topsfield over Ipswich

Tories beat Ipswich Monday night, no details yet.

Mariners 5 - Townies 3

The Manchester-Essex Mariners squeaked out a 5-3 victory over the Rockport Townies on Tuesday night at Memorial Park. The Townies manufactured 3 runs in the first 2 innings, but were held scoreless the rest of the way by reliever Lucas DaSilva. Charlie Choate came in to get the save with the bases loaded and 2 outs in the top of the 7th inning.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Topsfield - 8, Beverly - 5

Beverly tied the game at 5 in the fifth inning but Topsfield tacked on 3 runs in the final two frames.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Rockport/Manchester Split Sunday Doubleheader

Rockport takes Game One by a score of 8-2 and Manchester takes Game Two by a score of 16-10... More details to follow.

Mariners get back to winning ways, ready for series with Rockport

Mariners get back to winning ways, ready for series with Rockport
By Jason Brisbois
Cape Ann Beacon

Mariners player/coach Bryan Lafata summed things up quite succinctly after Manchester-Essex defeated Ipswich, 5-1, on Tuesday night: “It wasn’t a pretty win, but we’ll take it.”

After losing three games in a row – with two of those three losses coming at the hands of the surging Hamilton franchise that now stands in third place in the Intertown Twilight League – the Mariners went into Tuesday night’s game with the Chiefs with the mindset that this was a must-win game. And true to their pedigree – the Mariners were the champions of the ITL baseball league last season – the M’s came through in the clutch, even with some key players unavailable for the game.

“Ipswich was in the same situation as us,” explained Lafata. “They were missing some guys who were core hitters. We were, too, in a game we had to win. It’s a good way to start the second half of the season after losing three straight. To get out of the slump we had going on a key night, just a few days after the Fourth, was what we needed.”

The win was indeed a must-win for the Mariners. It stopped a three-game slide, and kept Manchester-Essex in first place in the ITL at 8-3-1, just ahead of Rockport (7-3). It was necessary for the Mariners to stop the skid and have some momentum with a three-game series set to begin on Sunday with a double-header against the Townies (2:35 p.m., Evans Field in Rockport), followed by Tuesday’s tilt between the two teams at Memorial Field in Essex (5:45 p.m.)

“We always have good battles with them,” Lafata said of Rockport. “We’re so familiar with them, being from Cape Ann. We play each other tough every time. It’s always tough to play them at home, and it’s hard to get one win there [at Evans Field]. When you go in there, you hope to walk out without getting swept. Then we play them Tuesday night, and after that it’s Beverly.”

Next week will be a busy one for the Mariners. Manchester Essex has three games against Rockport to start the week, and then will face Beverly on Thursday and Friday night. The hope is that the team’s pitching, what has gotten the Mariners through to this point, will be what carries them to victory during next week’s grueling schedule.

“It’s a tough undertaking,” said Lafata. “Hopefully, we can put the team’s weight on pitching. Tonight, even though it was a 5-1 win, I thought the best thing to do was to get some guys a few innings here and there.”

The player/coach did just that. Steve Stout started and earned the win, and was replaced by Matt Hildebrandt and Ryan Marques in the final two innings of the game. All three pitchers got their innings, and Lafata is hoping it will translate into the same type of success the team saw in the win over Ipswich.

Encouraging signs for Rockport as Townies surge to second place in ITL

Encouraging signs for Rockport as Townies surge to second place in ITL
By Jason Brisbois/
Cape Ann Beacon

With the Intertown Twilight League’s midseason now upon us, there’s a tight race atop the baseball league’s standings. And the Rockport Townies are right in the thick of things. A week ago, the Townies were hovering just above .500 and looking to get back in the ITL race. Three wins and seven days later, and Rockport is there, holding down second place in the league with a 7-3 record, just behind Manchester Essex (8-3-1) and just ahead of Hamilton (7-5), a team that took two first-half wins over the first-place Mariners.

“Those three games were big for us,” explained Rockport player/coach Jeremy Spittle. “It’s very encouraging, especially the way we’ve won some of those games. I think each win is a little different.”

Last Thursday, the name of the game was pitching and defense in a 4-3 win over Beverly. Derek Osmond picked up a complete-game win, scattering three runs, while the defense was solid behind him. The Townie offense did just enough to give Rockport the edge.

“Our team defense played really well,” said Spittle. “I think that win alone was a total team effort, with timely hits on top of good pitching and defense.”

On July 2, starter Matt Sharon struggled on the mound – as did the Rockport defense – but the Townies were able to do some damage at the plate to pull out an 11-7 win over Topsfield.

“Topsfield was a bit of a struggle,” said Spittle. “Even though we won, 11-7, we weren’t as crisp defensively. Matt Sharon pitched and it was a struggle for him. But at the same time, we were able to string hits together and score runs. It was a struggle, but we were able to find a way to win a game where we weren’t playing our best.”

On Monday night, the offense and the pitching of Brent Currier helped the Townies to overcome defensive deficiencies and earn a 7-2 win over Hamilton.

“We had great pitching from Brent last night,” explained Spittle. “There were a couple of extra runs given up by our defense. Our offense was great. We got the runs we needed in the key moment that we needed them.”

It all adds up to an intriguing battle in the season’s second half between the three heavyweights of the ITL, and the schedule makers have wasted no time in bringing on some dramatic matchups. On Thursday, the Townies travel to Hamilton to attempt to stay ahead of the Generals (5:45 p.m.). On Sunday, it’s a double-header against Manchester-Essex at Evans Field in Rockport (starting at 2:35 p.m.).

“I still don’t think we’ve played our best game, but we’re starting to get there,” added Spittle. “I think our best baseball is yet to come.”

Hamilton's Intertown Twilight team appears playoff bound

Hamilton's Intertown Twilight team appears playoff bound
By Dom Nicastro / Correspondent
GateHouse News Service

Hamilton missed last year’s Intertown Twilight Baseball League playoffs by the slimmest of margins. This summer, the Generals are making sure they stay near the top and avoid any drama near the bottom of the league. They helped their cause by sweeping the defending champions, Manchester Essex Mariners, the most recent victory an 11-5 decision thanks to four home runs.

That gave Hamilton its seventh win and put them in second place behind Manchester Essex, which only had three losses after the sweep by Hamilton. Jeff Jensen pitched Hamilton to the victory with a complete-game effort. He allowed seven hits, five runs, one walk and had two strikeouts. Hamilton actually trailed 5-0 before scoring 11 unanswered runs.

The Generals started its comeback when Mark Provost smacked a two-run double, and Jim Maloney followed with an RBI single cutting the Mariner lead to 5-3. The Generals took the lead in the following inning scoring five. Mark Ruggiero led off the bottom of the fourth with a solo shot to left. Provost delivered again with a three-run home run. Maloney completed the inning going back-to-back with a deep home run to center.

Jered Stewart was the next Hamilton batter to go deep, connecting for a two-run home run, and Ruggiero delivered another RBI single to close out the scoring. Jensen got the final three batters in the seventh to secure the win with the help of nifty double play to end the game.

Mike Drinkwater was the star of the day in the previous victory over the defending champs, 6-4. He went the distance while allowing four runs, eight hits, and recording seven strikeouts. The Generals got on the board first in the top of first after completing a successful double steal. Jim Love recorded an RBI fielder’s choice; Stewart then delivered a two-out RBI single to keep the inning alive, and Bryan Vitale smacked a three-run homer to break open the game for the Generals. In the seventh the Mariners got runners on second and third to make things interesting, but Drinkwater was able to shut the door and record a strikeout to end the game and earn the complete game victory.

Earlier, Judd Funchion pitched Hamilton to a 5-1 win over Topsfield. Funchion pitched a complete game allowing only one run and scattering eight hits. The only blemish was a solo homer in the fourth inning. The Generals put up five runs but really put the pressure on the home team most of the night as they seemed to threatening a big rally in most innings. Vitale (2-for-4, homer, four RBI), Love (two hits, RBI) and Ruggiero (3-for-4, two doubles) led Hamilton's offense.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Rams 3 Tories 0

Nick Liguori threw a 6 hit shutout for the Rams against Topsfield this past friday evening. Topsfield missed opportunities to support another solid outing from Zack Lamkin by leaving 4 men in scoring position. Rowley only had 4 hits recorded however a few walks and errors on the side of the Tories proved to be the difference in a tight game all the way through. White was 1 for 3 with a run scored for Rowley.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Game Change

Game scheduled for Sunday, July 25th between Ipswich @ Rockport has been moved to Tuesday, July27th and it will be a 6:30pm start.

Ipswich - 15, Beverly - 6

Kevin Michael pitched 6 innings for the win and also hit a homerun and triple to lead the offense. More details to follow.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Walk-Off Grand Slam Pushes Generals over Townies, 7-4

An epic pitchers duel gave way to 7th inning fireworks at Patton Park tonight. Brent Currier broke a 1-1 tie in the top of the seventh with a 3-run laser HR. The Generals fought back in the bottom half leading to a walk-off grand slam by Jim Maloney. Jeff Jensen dazzled on the mound once again for the Generals going 6 2/3. Osmond was equally impressive for the Townies, also going 6 2/3 innings. Jensen did not figure in the decision, Connor Sullivan picked up the win after he came in to record the final out in the top of the seventh. Osmond was the tough luck loser.

The Generals got on the board first in the first. Jim Maloney plated Provost with an RBI single who had previously doubled. The Townies shut the door on an early Generals rally by turning a nifty 1-6-3 double play to get out of the first. The one run lead stood until the sixth inning thanks to some great pitching and defense from both sides. Osmond only allowed two hits over the next 5 innings and recorded 6 k's (7 total). The Townies also caught a runner stealing and recorded another double play. Tom Robertson also contributed many sensational diving catches to keep the Generals from scoring.

On the other side, Jensen allowed only 2 hits over the first 5 innings. In the sixth, the Townies were able to tie the game at 1-1. Brent Currier led off the inning with a single. After a fielder's choice, Junker was able to single to right that put runner's on first and third. A clutch single tied the game where it remained heading into the seventh.

In the top half of the seventh inning the Townies worked two on with 2-out. Brent Currier came through again with a big hit. A line drive shot to left through the wind that cleared the fence. Just like that the Townies took a 4-1 heading into the last half of the seventh inning.

Osmond got the lead off man in the seventh to fly out. Up next, Ruggiero reached on a fly ball that somehow dropped in there. That was followed by Tilley reaching base on an error. With runners on first and second with one out, Osmond got Potter to ground a ball toward second. The ball hit Tilley in the base path resulting in the second out of the inning. Next up, Maidment was hit by a pitch loading the bases with two outs. Love walked making the score 4-2 with two out and the bases still loaded. Provost then followed with a hot shot to third, Maidment was able to beat the play thanks to some nice hustle, scoring another run and more importantly extending the game in the process. Maloney was next up and deposited a long Grand Slam into the pond completing the comeback and ending the game in walk-off fashion.

The win moves the Generals into second place at 8-5 with the Townies right behind at 7-4. The two teams have one game remaining between them, a makeup game that will be held in a few weeks. The Townies next face the first place Mariners in a double header on Sunday in Rockport. The Generals play three in a row against Rowley starting next Tuesday at Patton Park.

Tories-6 Rams-5

Topsfield picked up the win Wednesday at Eiras Field 6-5 behind some nice work on the mound by Beople(5Inn, 6H, 3R) and Lampkin who entered a 1 run game in the 7th with none out and recorded the save, stranding the tying run on 2nd. The 2 teams square off again Friday night at Proctor.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Mariners 5 - Chiefs 1

The Mariners defeated the Ipswich Chiefs 5-1 on Tuesday night in Essex. Steve Stout picked up the win on the mound going 5 strong innings, followed by a shutout inning from both Matt Hildebrand and Ryan Marques. Mike Cain led the Mariners with a 2 run homer in the 1st inning.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Rockport 7 Hamilton 2

On a splendid summer night at Evans, Rockport defeated Hamilton 7-2. Brent Currier went the distance for the Townie victory (CG,6K,2BB,6H,1ER). Mike Drinkwater recorded the loss for the Generals (4IP,2K,4BB,7H,4ER). Luke Painchaud come on in relief(2IP,5H and 3ER) for Drinkwater.

Townies were paced offensively by Currier (2-3,2B,2RBIs,RS), Mike Emerson (3-4,2B,2RS), Cory Emerson (3-3,3B,2RS) and Matt Ayer (HR,RBI,RS). Hamilton was paced offensively by Love and Provost each having a hit and a run scored.

Rockport has now won three in a row and five out of their last six to improve to 7-3. Hamilton falls to 7-5.

The two teams meet again Thursday at Patton Park. 5:45 first pitch.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Pitching staff buoys Townies, Mariners in first half of the ITL season

Pitching staff buoys Townies, Mariners in first half of the ITL season
By Jason Brisbois/
Cape Ann Beacon
Posted Jun 30, 2010

At the start of the season, the one thing Townies player/coach Jeremy Spittle was primarily concerned with was his team’s pitching. With two key pitchers from 2009 not returning, and Brent Currier and Derek Osmond attempting to work themselves back into the grind of the league, the starting pitching situation was anything but settled.

Thankfully, after a 2-2 stretch that has the team improving to 4-3, things are looking up for the pitching staff and the Townies as a unit.

“I’ve been pleased with our pitching so far, at least our starting pitching,” said Spittle. “We’ve had some good performances out of people, so that’s been helping us. I wasn’t sure what we were going to have, but so far, so good.”

Matt Sharon has been a revelation in the early part of the season, going 2-0 as a starter and pitching complete games both times. Derek Osmond has yet to pick up a win, but has looked good in two starts despite the final results.

“Matt Sharon has been workmanlike, giving us really good innings,” explained Spittle. “Derek Osmond had two tough losses. He starts off a little slow, but both times he’s gotten into a groove and kept us in the game. In the 6-3 loss to Rowley, he pitched well. When he lost to Ipswich, 5-3, I have to give him credit; he struggled early, but settled down and gave us a chance to win. We just didn’t cash in on our opportunities.”

And that’s been the one thing plaguing the Townies so far. Rockport’s entry into the Intertown Twilight League has had trouble putting the bat to the baseball.

“I think offensively, we’re still trying to find ourselves,” said Spittle. “Some guys are hitting, and some guys aren’t. There’ve been some opportunities where we’ve had chances to get into a game, or take a lead in a game, and in our last two losses, that’s been the case. We haven’t had the big hitting we need.”

The story is very much the same for the league-leading Mariners across town. The Manchester/Essex ITL franchise is in first place with a 6-2-1 record, with the pitching cited as the primary reason the M’s are at the head of the pack right now.

“Our pitchers are doing pretty well,” explained Manchester Essex player/coach Bryan Lafata. “They’ve made just a few mistakes, but the other team is making them pay. [Starting pitchers] Mike Gibbon, Steve Stout and Brandon Bell, their ERA’s are all under two. They’re doing real well. The defense is playing pretty good. But we’re hitting .280 as a team, and no one is hitting really consistently.”

The offense has shown up in more than spurts this season for the Mariners. Charlie Choate had a 4-for-4 night recently; Mike Cain hit two grand slams in one game earlier this season. But it’s once again a matter of getting more consistent with the bat for the Manchester Essex offense.

“Some of the guys are now getting a little older, they’re a couple of years out of college, and now they have to get used to not hitting every single day,” explained Lafata. “Some guys have to hit a little more. They have to adjust their approaches.”

For the Townies, the hope is that the upcoming deluge of games that always seems to rear its head in July – Spittle estimates there are 13 games on tap before the month ends – could help the Rockport offense find its rhythm. That’s exactly the formula the Townies used in 2009 to get to the ITL championship series.

“In the two wins we’ve had, we had that one or two big innings with those hits,” said Spittle. “Our offense has been a little inconsistent, but I think it will come around since we’re approaching July. I’m hoping once we get into a rhythm, that timely hitting will come around and we’ll find consistency.”

There’s also the matter of St. Peter’s Fiesta interrupting the schedule last weekend, and Independence Day falling on the upcoming weekend. It can throw a team off, but Spittle claims his team is used to it at this point.

“It throws a little bit of a kink in there, but it is what it is,” he explained. “We’ve been dealing with it the last couple of years. We’re fortunate that the Fourth is actually on a Sunday, because we get to play Thursday and Friday, and then next Thursday and a doubleheader with Manchester the day after that. If we can win three or four of those, then we’re sitting all right.”

Friday, July 2, 2010

Rowley @ Hamilton Makeup Game

scheduled for tuesday July 13th
@ patton park
5:45pm start time

Rockport - 4, Beverly - 3

Rockport won a hard fought game Thursday night in Beverly. Derek Osmond pitched a complete game for the victory. Rockport had two solo homers from Brent Currier and one from Tommy Robertson. Beverly got solo homers from Derek Scialdone and Conor Walsh.

The Giants led 3 to 2 in the top of the 6th. Robertson tied the game with a homer. With one out and runners at first and third, Rockport beat out a double play ball to score the go ahead run.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Generals Top Mariners 11-5

The Generals pulled off a first half sweep of the Mariners tonight thanks to a great pitching performance from Jeff Jensen and a power surge at the plate. The comeback win puts Hamilton at 7-4 for the season, Manchester falls to 7-3-1 but remains in first place at the halfway point. Jensen pitched a complete game allowing 7 hits, 5 runs, 1 BB, and 2 k’s. Marques started for Manchester but did not figure in the decision, DeSilva was charged with the loss in relief.

Manchester/Essex jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first. Orlando led the game off with a single, followed by a HBP. Cain completed the damage with a 3-run HR to left. The Mariners extended the lead to 5-0 in the third. Buckley got a 2-run single putting the Mariners ahead with a comfortable lead at the time.

The Generals started their comeback in the bottom half of the inning scoring 3-runs. Provost broke the ice with a 2 run double, Maloney followed with an RBI single cutting the Mariner lead to 5-3. The Generals took the lead in the following inning scoring 5. Ruggiero led off the bottom of the fourth with a solo shot to left. After a HBP and a single, Provost delivered again with a 3-run HR. Maloney completed the inning going back-to-back with a deep HR to center.

The Generals scored 3 more in the sixth. Jered Stewart contributed a 2-run HR, and Ruggiero delivered another RBI single to close out the scoring. Jensen got the final 3 batters in the 7th to secure the win with the help of nifty double play to end the game. Generals win 11-5 thanks to the 4 HR’s and nice pitching performance. The two teams won’t meet again until the final week of the season, and if this year shapes up like year’s past, there will be a lot on the line.

Tories 6 Giants 2

The Topsfield Tories got a win from Beverly on Wednesday night at Proctor. Zack Lamkin went the distance for the Tories with a line of 9K/3BB/2ER/5HITS. He also contributed at the plate going 3/4 with a double and 2 runs scored. Ben Hathaway and Dave Gallugi also contributed with 2RBIs each. McGlaughlin played well for Beverly going 2/3 with a double, a triple, and 2RBIs.