First CCBL All-Star Game Since 2019 Does Not Disappoint

By: Brendan Samson

Topics: Cape Cod Baseball League , Orleans Firebirds , Chatham Anglers , Harwich Mariners , Brewster Whitecaps

Chatham outfielder Lyle Miller-Green was one of the stars of Saturday’s All-Star festivities after winning the Home Run Derby with 15 homers in the finals. BRENDAN SAMSON PHOTO

WAREHAM – Sixteen home runs in two minutes. That is how Chatham Anglers outfielder Lyle Miller-Green opened Saturday’s festivities at the Cape League’s first All-Star game since 2019, which saw the East top the West 4-1 at Wareham's Spillane Field.

Those 16 bombs cemented Miller-Green’s spot in the Home Run Derby finals and pushed him past his first-round opponent Carson Jones, an outfielder for the Bourne Braves.

Miller-Green started the competition with a bang, but his East teammates were unable to follow it up. Both Brock Wilken, third baseman for the Harwich Mariners, and Cameron Fisher, outfielder for the Brewster Whitecaps, were defeated by their first-round opponents in one-minute overtime periods.

Wilken fell to Cotuit Kettleers first-baseman Tyler Johnson 8-7 in his extra frame after tying with nine home runs each in the original two-minute period. Walker tied with Tommy Troy, second baseman for the Kettleers, but lost 3-2 in overtime.

These losses left Miller-Green as the lone representative for the East, going up against Johnson and Troy in the final. Chatham’s big slugger – who recently transferred to Austin Peay – didn’t disappoint. He smashed 15 big flies to capture the derby crown.

Despite losing in his first-round match-up, Wilken said he enjoyed watching the 6-foot-6, 230-pound Miller-Green bring home the victory.

“The derby was pretty sick watching Lyle hit that many homers,” Wilken said. “I hit a couple; it was fun. It was fun to watch everything play out, it really felt like you’re in the big leagues, it was really a day like that. So, it was pretty cool.”

While Miller-Green’s day was over after the derby, Wilken’s was just getting started. The Wake Forest senior batted fourth in the All-Star Game and started at third base for the East in the team’s 4-1 win.

The game began with Orleans Firebirds pitcher Bryce Warrecker tossing a scoreless first before nine other pitchers appeared in the winning effort. Brewster Whitecaps manager Jamie Shevchik, who managed the East team alongside other Whitecaps coaches, says the day provided the players time to rest up and enjoy themselves before the last couple weeks of the season.

“It was awesome. It was fun,” Shevchik said. “It's just a good break from the grind that we go through, and these guys go through every single day. It’s a little bit more laid back and relaxed and you get to see some of the best baseball players in the country on one field play today, and I'm happy to be a part of it.”

The scoring opened in the third inning when Chatham outfielder Chase DeLeo came home on a passed ball. The East added runs in the fourth when Brewster Whitecaps outfielder Grayson Tatrow smacked a double in the gap to plate Wilken, who had reached on an error.

With the East leading 2-0, the West answered in the bottom half of the first inning with a Tyler Johnson home run, adding to his total from the derby and making it a 2-1 game.

From there, the East notched a few more insurance runs in the fifth when Orleans shortstop Luke Keaschall scored on a ground ball by fellow shortstop Nick Goodwin of Harwich, and Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox outfielder Homer Bush Jr. scored on a wild pitch in the eighth.

The West was unable squeak any runs across the plate from the fourth inning on and ended the game scoring just the one run on four hits. They were plagued by errors, totaling four in the game and gifting runs to the East, whic also had only four hits but outscored their opponents by three.

To cap off the day, Tatrow received CCBL All-Star Game MVP honors for driving in the winning run in the third inning.

“The game was awesome, it was fun chopping it up with these guys and playing with a whole bunch of people that I've never met before,” Tatrow said. “This crowd was electric, and people really came out. It’s exciting to see.”

In addition to CCBL teammates, the rosters also included some college teammates who reunited Saturday after competing against each other in the Cape League. One of those players was Chatham shortstop Marcus Brown, who played at Oklahoma State University in the spring with Brewster first baseman David Mendham and Miller-Green, who attended OSU before transferring to Austin Peay this summer.

“It was just like the old times, but it was just nice to be around a lot of kids from all over the place, it's what makes summer ball unique,” Brown said. “You get to meet a lot of new people, create these networks, get to know a lot of people from all across the country, But yeah, it was good to be reunited with some OSU guys and watch Lyle [Miller-Green] win the Home Run Derby and all that stuff. It was awesome day.”