ORLEANS — Despite falling a game below .500, the Orleans Firebirds (17-18) maintained their second-place spot in the Cape Cod Baseball League’s East Division standings. The team dropped two straight to division leaders Yarmouth-Dennis on Sunday and Monday but split a Friday double-header with Chatham, which is struggling at the bottom of the league standings.
UNC-Charlotte’s Brandon Stahlman has been a spark for the Firebirds since his arrival on July 15. Stahlman has 4 multi-hit games, including a 3-for-4 performance against Bourne on July 19. He’s hitting .375 and has 9 hits and just 2 strikeouts in 24 plate appearances.
Jo Oyama (UC Irvine) was named the East MVP at the All-Star Game on Saturday. He was 1 for 3 with a walk and a stolen base, and he scored the lone run for the East.
Sean Matson has yet to relinquish a run in 16 2/3 innings pitched. Matson has tallied 20 strikeouts, given up 8 hits, and walked only 2. He has a 4-0 record with 4 saves.
Elsewhere across the league, Cotuit has clinched a playoff berth with a 23-11-1 record. They lead the West Division by a narrow margin over surging Hyannis.
Harbor Hawks 15, Firebirds 5
Orleans was clobbered by Hyannis — the hottest team in the league — on Thursday at Eldredge Park. The Harbor Hawks, who are 8-1-1 in their last 10 games, put up 6 runs in the 2nd inning to erase a 2-0 Firebirds lead. Kros Sivley (Southern Miss) earned the win, pitching 3 scoreless innings and giving up just one hit with 3 strikeouts.
Sam Hliboki dropped to 0-2 on the season, lasting just 1 1/3 inning. Oyama went 2 for 4, reached base via a walk, and scored two runs. Owen Carapellotti (Georgetown) also was 2 for 4 from the 8th spot in the lineup and had 2 RBIs. Matt Halbach (UC San Diego) was 3 for 5 with an RBI in the loss.
Will Taylor (Clemson) had the hot bat for the Harbor Hawks, going 4 for 6 with a home run and a double.
Anglers 6, Firebirds 3
Chatham beat Orleans in the first game of a doubleheader on Friday at Eldredge Park. The Firebirds took the lead on an Eddie Micheletti Jr. (George Washington) single that scored Oyama. The Anglers responded with 2 runs in the third and 3 in the fourth. After the Firebirds scored twice in the bottom of the third, they would be held scoreless in the shortened game. Aidan Meola (Oklahoma State) drove in Zach MacDonald (Miami) to tie the game at 3-3 before Deric Fabian (Florida) stepped up and hit a 2-run homer to make it 5-3. The Anglers added an insurance run in the sixth.
Evan Truitt (Charleston Southern) pitched 4 innings, surrendering 5 runs, 3 of them earned. He is 1-1 on the season in 5 starts and one appearance out of the bullpen. Gabe Davis (Oklahoma State) earned the win pitching 4 innings. He struck out 5. Zander Sechrist (Tennessee) picked up the save for the Anglers with 3 scoreless innings.
The first 3 Orleans batters all had multi-hit games, including the leadoff man Oyama.
Firebirds 4, Anglers 3
Orleans bounced back in the back end of the doubleheader, holding on to beat Chatham 4-3 on Friday. The Firebirds took a 1-0 lead in the third inning on Jo Oyama’s homer. But the Anglers responded with a 2-run shot off the bat of Kaeden Kent (Texas A&M). Orleans regained the advantage when Micheletti drove in Oyama and Justin Rubin (Virginia).
The Anglers would not go away, tying the game with a Zach MacDonald single. Matson set up Orleans for a chance for heroics after stepping in in relief with 3 straight outs in the top of the seventh. Micheletti reached base with a double and was replaced by Jake Casey as a pinch runner. Casey advanced to third on an error by the second baseman before Owen Carapellotti’s sacrifice fly scored his teammate for a walk-off win.
Greysen Carter (Vanderbilt) pitched a strong 3 1/3 innings, striking out 6 and giving up no hits. Matson moved to 4-0 on the season. Micheletti was 4 for 4 with two RBIs while Oyama went 2 for 3, scoring two runs.
Red Sox 8, Firebirds 2
Yarmouth-Dennis defeated Orleans 8-2 at Eldredge Park on Sunday. The Red Sox jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the fourth inning. The Firebirds posted a lone run in the home half, but the lead grew to 7 when the Sox scored 2 in the ninth. Jack Penney drove in Henry Hunter (UAB) in the last frame before Halbach was thrown out at first to end the game.
Sean Hliboki suffered losses in consecutive outings. Ryan Delgado (California Baptist) earned the win in his second appearance for the Red Sox, lasting 5 1/3 innings. He gave up 2 hits and had 6 strikeouts. Zander Darby (UC Santa Barbara) hit his third home run and went 4 for 5 at the plate with two RBIs for Yarmouth-Dennis.
Red Sox 5, Firebirds 0
Orleans was blanked by Yarmouth-Dennis at Red Wilson Field on Monday. Jason Doktorczyk (Nevada Reno) pitched 6 scoreless innings in his first start. He struck out 6, walked none, and gave up 6 hits. Doktorczyk combined with Boston Mabeus (Brigham Young), who kept the Firebirds’ bats quiet in 3 innings pitched. He had 4 strikeouts and allowed 4 hits in his first appearance.
Orleans stranded 9 batters in the loss. Oyama was 0 for 4 for the second straight game. Micheletti and Brandon Stahlman both went 2 for 4 for the Firebirds.
July 28 at Chatham, 5 p.m.
July 28 at Chatham, 7 p.m.
July 29 vs. Brewster, 6:30 p.m.
July 30 at Hyannis, 6 p.m.
July 31 vs. Harwich 6:30 p.m.
Aug. 1 at Yarmouth-Dennis, 4:30 p.m.
Aug. 2 vs. Chatham, 6:30 p.m.