Boston College assistant coach Steve Englert will be the field manager for the Eastern Division in the 2013 Cape Cod Baseball League All Star Game, according to releases from the league detailing rosters for Saturday's event. Englert clinched the honor by guiding the Harwich Mariners to the best record in the East last year. He was also named 2012 Manager of the Year in the CCBL.
Englert is the lone representative from Massachusetts college baseball as no players were selected to play in the annual event, considered the greatest showcase of collegiate baseball talent in the nation. Seeing as all the coaches are either the team's manager or assistant, that's not really a huge honor, but clinching the best record in a division and being named manager of a division is an example of a team's excellence from the prior year.
Englert leads the All Star honors for the Birdballers, who saw players Chris Shaw and Johnny Adams named to the All Star Games for the New England Collegiate Baseball League and Futures Collegiate Baseball League, respectively. Shaw was a coach's selection for the NECBL, considered by most to be the second best collegiate summer league in the Northeast behind the Cape League, and Adams was selected to Team New England for the FCBL, which employs an All Star Game featuring the four Massachusetts teams against the other four New England franchises.
Last season, Harwich went 27-16-1 but were swept in two straight by the Chatham Anglers. This year, the Mariners are right back near the top of the Eastern Division, going 18-16-1, 12 points behind Chatham for the division lead heading into tonight's last day before the ASG. Under Englert, Harwich overcame the Yarmouth-Dennis dynasty to win championships in 2008 and 2011. They were the franchise's first titles since 1997.
Three Harwich Mariners will be in the starting lineup, including Aaron Bummer of Nebraska, who gets the start on the hill. Two assitional Mariners will be on the bench for the East's squad at the event, held Saturday afternoon at Red Wilson Field in Yarmouth.
Shaw continues to tear up the NECBL's pitching, hitting at a .304 clip for the New Bedford Bay Sox as of press time. 13 of his 38 hits have been for extra bases with nine doubles and four homers. He's knocked in 29 runs. Of concern is his strikeout-to-walk rate, where he's whiffed 26 times to just 21 walks. But the free-swinging Shaw is going to be the centerpiece of the Eagles next year as a sophomore, a former 26th round draft choice of the New York Mets.
Adams, meanwhile, is putting together respectable numbers for the Nashua Silver Knights of the FCBL. The FCBL, the clear tertiary league of New England summer baseball, is a proving ground for many Division II and Division III athletes, but it's still a good way to keep bodies loose and fresh through the summer. Adams is hitting .301 with 43 hits in over 30 games, including 11 extra base hits (seven doubles, two triples, two homers). He's knocked in 25 runs and has only struck out 16 times, helping Nashua to a 25-13 record.
Congraulations to our Birdball representatives on their summer accomplishments!