Remains Nation’s Top Team, But
Plenty of Contenders Are Lurking
Cape Cod League’s Harwich Mariners remain the nation’s top-ranked
summer-league team for the third week in a row, but there are plenty
of teams lining up to bump the Mariners from their perch if they
should falter over the course of the summer.
among them is the Orleans Firebirds, Harwich’s Eastern Division
rival in the Cape Cod League. The Firebirds boast the same 12-3
record and rank No. 2 nationally in Perfect Game’s ranking of the
top 30 teams for the second straight week.
chances of overtaking Harwich, though, took another hit on Friday
when closer Trevor Gott (Kentucky), who led the Cape in saves a year
ago and had saved four more games this season, hurt his shoulder and
was forced to leave the team. The severity of the injury is unclear.
was the second major loss to the Orleans pitching staff in little
more than a week as Arizona State righthander Trevor Williams, a
potential first-rounder in the 2013 draft, left the Firebirds to join
USA Baseball’s college national team.
the meantime, Harwich has only added talent to its roster since the
start of the 2012 season, and ran off a recent streak of nine wins in
a row. Outfielder Phil Ervin, a rising junior at Samford, has been
the dominant player for the Mariners from the outset, hitting .364
with a Cape-best eight homers and 16 RBIs, but the late additions of
Stanford outfielder Austin Wilson and Louisiana State righthander
Aaron Nola may have separated Harwich, the defending Cape Cod League
champion, from Orleans—or any team in summer baseball.
6-foot-5, 245-pound Wilson hit just .204 for the Mariners in 2011,
but was hitting .355-5-12 in his first nine games and displaying the
kind of all-around raw talent that will make him one of the top
candidates to go No. 1 overall in the 2013 draft. Nola (2-0, 0.82 in
his first two starts) may be the top prospect in the Cape this summer
in the 2014 draft class.
those teams expected to give Harwich and Orleans a run for the No. 1
ranking in the country are a number of equally-hot clubs in various
leagues around the country, notably the No. 3-ranked Wenatchee
AppleSox (18-3) of the West Coast League, No. 4-ranked Mankato
MoonDogs (25-7) of the Northwoods League, No. 5-ranked Keene Swamp
Bats (14-4) of the New England College League, No. 6-ranked Amsterdam
Mohawks (19-3) of the Perfect Game Collegiate League and No. 7-ranked
East Texas Pump Jacks (21-4) of the Texas Collegiate League.
have capitalized on early season hot streaks to surge into the top 10
nationally. With 18 wins in its last 19 games, achieved largely on
the strength of a dominant young pitching staff, Amsterdam may be the
hottest team in the country.
by Harwich and Orleans, a total of six teams from the Cape Cod
League, acknowledged as the nation’s most-prestigious
summer-college league, occupy spots in Perfect Game’s Top 30
ranking. The Coastal Plain, Northwoods and Valley leagues all have
three teams ranked.
are ranked on the following criteria: won-loss record, league
dominance, depth and quality of professional-level talent and the
overall strength of the league. To receive consideration, teams must
have at least a .500 record overall.