Micros Repeat as Central Mass Champs
By Chris Villani Sports Reporter/Columnist · August 12, 2011
The Milford Micros Senior Babe Ruth Team celebrated their second Central Mass Championship this summer with wins over the very good Bellingham and Medfield teams in the semi-finals and finals. Contributed photo
Deja vu all over again, a redundant quote made notable by a baseball turned insurance icon, Yogi Berra. It certainly applies to the Milford Senior Ruth baseball team. The Micros turned things around after a mediocre start for the second straight season to repeat as champions of the Central Mass Senior Babe Ruth league.
"We told the kids you have to stay in it, and we had a lot of faith that we would," said head coach Jim Cappadoro, whose team started out 5-6 before finishing the year 17-10. "We had some younger kids who came around and some older kids who led the way through the second half of the season and we just grinded it out."
It was a little more hair-raising this time around. Last season, Milford went 5-5 though its first 10 games before winning out the rest of the year, including two-game sweeps in each of its playoff series. This season, the Micros had to win each series in game three, with each deciding contest on the road. Milford knocked out Bellingham in the South Division finals, winning 3-0 in the third game behind a shutout performance from Ryan Simoneau.
Next up was Medfield, the team Milford beat to win the 2010 title. The Micros dropped the series opener 5-1, but bounced back to win Game Two thanks to another shutout; this time from Eric Fernandes. The left-hander was one of the top starters on the mound for Milford in 2011, posting a deceptive 4-4 record with a 2.93 ERA. "It was really fun to watch him, he kept us in that game," said Cappadoro of Fernandes season-saving effort.
Milford turned the ball back over to Simoneau for Game Three. He had already been victorious in the previous two winner-take-all affairs and would earn the win to give the Micros the championship as well.
The Micros jumped out to a five run lead in the final game against Medfield, with Chris Traficante leading the way with a pair of doubles and two RBIs. Medfield responded with four runs to make it a one run game, but the Micros prevented the tying run from scoring when centerfielder Cam Cossette threw a strike to catcher Eddie Moran at home plate to cut down a run. "That may have been the biggest play of the year," said Cappadoro.
Milford went on to an 8-6 win, and its second straight title.
"It was awesome, even though it was a little different than last year," said Cappadoro. "But it was still exciting to watch them go through."