BY PETER WARDELL
Editor’s note: Our latest installment of the Cape League hot sheet encompasses the last two weeks—statistics reflect performance from July 2 through July 15.
1. Brandon Trinkwon, ss, Hyannis Harbor Hawks (Jr., UC Santa Barbara)
Statistics: .439/.468/.789 (25-for-57), 16 R, 5 2B, 5 HR, 22 RBI, 4 BB, 5 K, 2-for-2 SB
Even before going 2-for-5 with a home run and a double last night, Trinkwon had been without question the hottest hitter on the Cape over the past two weeks. With eight multi-hit showings in his last 12 games, the rising junior has become a staple at the top of the lineup for the Harbor Hawks, showing tremendous patience and impressive pure hitting ability.
“He’s a very mature hitter,” Hyannis manager Chad Gassman said. “I’ve seen many times where he’s down in the count and he just clears it and goes back to work, looking for his pitch to hit. I think the biggest thing I’ve noticed is that he can forget the last pitch and go on to the next one so well.”
“I’m just trying to stay patient,” Trinkwon said. “I’m seeing the ball well, the bat feels good in my hands and I’m trying to relax at the plate. I dropped sizes in wood bat a couple weeks ago and that’s helped me get around on pitches much better—I’m starting to be able to barrel up balls pretty consistently.”
2. Sean Manaea, lhp, Hyannis Harbor Hawks (Jr., Indiana State)
Statistics: 2-0, 0.69, 13 IP, 2 GS, 8 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 22 K
After claiming the fifth spot in the first Cape hot sheet that looked at top performers to date, Manaea has only continued to dominate, turning in a pair of gems for his first two wins of the season. In his most recent outing, the rising junior turned in seven solid frames, allowing just one run on two hits while striking out 13. The 6-foot-5, 215-pounder features a low-90s fastball with good life, a promising slider and developing changeup.
“I’m much more confident,” Manaea said. “I’m throwing my offspeed for strikes and keeping hitters off balance. I go out there having the mentality that, ‘I’m the best’—it’s all about having that confidence.”
3. Tom Windle, lhp, Brewster Whitecaps (Jr., Minnesota)
Statistics: 2-0, 0.00, 12 IP, 2 GS, 5 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 17 K
Windle, who pitched primarily out of the bullpen for Minnesota this spring, has been a pleasant surprise since moving to a starting role this summer. After getting roughed up in his first start, the rising junior has posted three impressive outings in a row, showing improvements each time out. On Tuesday, the 6-foot-4, 202 pound southpaw went six shutout innings while striking out eight and allowing just one hit.
“Tom has been very impressive,” said Brewster manager John Altobelli. “He gets all three pitches over for strikes and he really has been lights-out for us.”
4. Colin Moran, 3b, Bourne Braves (Jr., North Carolina)
Statistics: .340/.364/.680 (17-for-50), 10 R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 4 HR, 22 RBI, 2 BB, 10 K
After a modest start to the summer season, Moran, a rising junior at North Carolina, caught fire last week, driving in 17 runs on the week. After a broken hand knocked him out for much of his sophomore campaign, the 2011 BA Freshman of the Year has continued to rebound well in his second summer on the Cape, re-asserting himself as one of the top pure hitters in the 2013 class. “It’s definitely been a good experience so far and definitely a lot of learning,” Moran said. “My hand feels good and I definitely feel full strength. I’m really just trying to stay even-keel at this point and contribute.”
Already well regarded for his advanced approach, bat control and pitch recognition, Moran has also begun to show more power this summer, slugging his fifth home run last Sunday.
5. Matt Boyd, lhp, Orleans Firebirds (Sr., Oregon State)
Statistics: 1-0, 0.00, 7.1 IP, 7 G, 4 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 12 K
Boyd, a 13th-round selection by the Reds this June who opted to return to Oregon State for his senior season, has quickly become one of the top relievers on the Cape this summer. Since a shaky debut on June 29, the 6-foot-3, 215-pound lefthander has been dominant, averaging nearly two strikeouts per inning, without allowing a run.
“Simply put, Boyd knows how to pitch," Orleans manager Kelly Nicholson said. "It’s good velocity, a good breaking ball and he really, really competes. He loves to be on the mound.”
6. Daniel Aldrich, of, Cotuit Kettleers (Jr., College of Charleston)
Statistics: .375/.388/.688 (18-for-48), 12 R, 3 2B, 4 HR, 12 RBI, 1 BB, 14 K, 1-for-1 SB
After being released by Orleans at the July 2 roster deadline, Aldrich was quickly scooped up by Cotuit. The move has certainly paid dividends, as the Kettleers have gone 8-2 since his addition to the lineup. Aldrich has recorded a hit in all 10 games he's played with Cotuit so far.
“He’s really sparked our club and picked everybody up,” Cotuit manager Mike Roberts said. “He’s a mature player, and when you give a mature player the chance to play every day, he can contribute.”
7. AJ Reed, lhp, Harwich Mariners (So., Kentucky)
Statistics: 1-0, 0.00, 12 IP, 2 GS, 8 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 15 K
A first-team freshman All-American as a two-way player at Kentucky this spring, Reed has been a reliable presence on the mound for first-place Harwich over the past two weeks. After struggling a bit in his first two outings, the imposing 6-foot-4, 230-pounder has been solid of late, holding opponents scoreless while showing improved command and confidence.
“He’s getting better every outing,” Harwich manager Steve Englert said. “He’s making quality pitches and has developed an understanding of how to get hitters out. He gets ahead and knows how to put guys away. He’s really locked in.”
8. Carlos Asuaje, 3b, Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox (Jr., Nova Southeastern, Fla.)
Statistics: .333/.377/.542 (16-for-48), 11 R, 4 2B, 2 HR, 15 RBI, 4 BB, 6 K, 1-for-1 SB
With a league-leading .317 batting average, the Red Sox have been one of the toughest teams to beat on the Cape this summer due to their ability to hit throughout the entire lineup. Leading the charge has been the 5-foot-8, 165-pound Asuaje. The rising junior has done it all for the Sox, getting on base consistently and blossoming into one of the team’s top run producers, driving in a run in 10 of his last 11 games.
“I honestly think he might be the best ballplayer on my team,” Y-D manager Scott Pickler said.
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