Boston High School: Tommy Buonopane

ESPN Boston MIAA All-State Baseball Team

June, 28, 2013
6/28/13
12:01
PM ET
STARTING ROTATION

RHP – Tommy McDonald, Sr., BC High
The ace and the workhorse of BC’s rotation, which saw the Eagles make their first D1 South Final appearance since 2009, McDonald often went late into games to pick up a win. He was 7-0 on the season, with a 1.90 ERA, five complete games and just 10 walks. The Quincy resident will continue his career next year at UMass.

LHP – Ben Bowden, Sr., Lynn English
The state’s Gatorade Player of the Year, Bowden is a repeat selection, having also made the starting rotation of the All-State Team in 2012. On the season he was 4-2 with 84 strikeouts in 52 innings, with just 10 walks for an ERA of 0.67. He also recorded a .459 on-base percentage at the plate, with 13 RBI. Bowden will play at Vanderbilt next year.

LHP – Scott Tully, Sr., Reading
Another repeat All-State selection, Tully dominated the Middlesex League en route to winning the Liberty division’s MVP. For the season he went 7-1 with 96 strikeouts and an ERA of 0.54. For his career, he has 29 wins and over 400 strikeouts. Tully is headed to Notre Dame next year.

RHP – Evan Flanagan, Sr., Hingham
The Patriot League’s Co-MVP saved his best stuff for the playoffs, as the Harbormen won their first Division 2 state title in school history. On the season he was 6-2 with 79 strikeouts in 56 innings, with five complete games, a 1.75 ERA and a WHIP of 0.93. Flanagan will continue his career next year at the University of Rhode Island.

LHP – Mike Gaughan, Sr., Walpole
One of the state’s most elusive lefties, Gaughan helped lead the Rebels to the No. 1 overall seed in D1 South. He was 10-2 on the season with 117 strikeouts and a 1.88 ERA, and held opponents to a .180 batting average. Gaughan is headed to Division 2 Rollins College (Fla.) next year.

STARTING NINE

C – Joe Freiday, Jr., Bridgewater-Raynham
One of the state’s leaders in runs plated, Freiday finished the year batting .425, with a .573 on-base percentage, 31 RBI and five home runs. He also drew 21 walks and struck out just 10 times. Freiday is fielding interest from an assortment of Division 1 programs.

INF – Nick Bragole, Sr., St. John’s Prep
Part of one of the state’s most prolific hitting lineups, Bragole put up .403/.532/.758 totals with 21 RBI and six home runs, along with 10 stolen bases, as the Eagles captured the No. 1 seed in D1 North, won 22 straight games and made an appearance in the D1 North final. Bragole is headed to Division 2 St. Anselm College (N.H.) in the fall.

INF – Kenny Michael, Sr., Norwood
Michael catalyzed the Mustangs late in the season when they snatched the Bay State Conference’s Herget Division title in the last week of the regular season. He was named the Herget MVP as he hit .429 with 27 RBI and a home run. Michael will continue his career at Division 2 Southern New Hampshire University.

INF – Alex Toomey, Sr., Beverly
Toomey beat out a number of high-profile players to take the MVP in the Northeastern Conference’s Large division, and deservedly so. For the season he his .431 with eight doubles, 31 RBI and five home runs, only striking out five times. On the mound, he went 6-2 with a 1.33 ERA and 61 strikeouts in 42.1 innings. Toomey is headed to Salem State University next year.

INF – Brandon Bingel, Sr., St. John’s Prep
This year’s recipient of the prestigious ESPN Boston Mr. Baseball Award, Bingel was a force in all three phases of the game to take Catholic Conference MVP for the second straight year. He batted .302 with 20 RBI and two home runs, and went 9-0 on the mound with 76 strikeouts in 58.2 innings, walking just 10 batters, for a 0.97 ERA. Bingel will continue his career at Bryant University.

OF – David MacKinnon, Sr., Oliver Ames
MacKinnon took Hockomock League MVP honors after hitting .500 with 16 RBI. One of the best pure athletes of the bunch, MacKinnon is also an All-American soccer player, and will play both sports at the University of Hartford.

OF – Ian Strom, Sr., Hopedale
Strom was a monster on both the mound and at the plate as the Blue Raiders reached the Division 3 State Final. He hit .514 on the year with 21 RBI and 15 stolen bases, and didn’t strike out all season. On the mound, he was 9-2 with 107 strikeouts in 67.2 innings, for a 1.45 ERA. Strom will continue his career next season at UMass-Lowell.

OF – Mike Bruemmel, Sr., Bridgewater-Raynham
The Co-MVP of the Old Colony League saved his best stroke for last, carrying a no-hitter into the eighth inning to lead the Trojans to their first Division 1 state title in school history. On the season he batted .341 with a .505 on-base percentage, with 21 RBI and 11 stolen bases. On the mound, he was 6-1 with 69 strikeouts in 41.1 innings, with a 1.82 ERA. Bruemmel is headed to Wheaton College next year.

DH – Malcolm Nachmanoff, Sr., Boston Latin
The Dual County League’s MVP of the Large division, Nachmanoff carried a heavy bat, hitting .507 with 26 RBI and five home runs. He also recorded a 1.45 ERA in 53 innings pitched. Nachmanoff is headed to Loomis Chafee (Conn.) next year for a post-graduate season.


BEST OF THE REST

OF – Dan Avery, Sr., Blackstone Valley Tech
Avery excelled both ways for the Beavers, recording .492/.579/.689 totals at the plate with three triples, 26 RBI, 28 runs scored and 18 stolen bases. On the mound, he was 7-2 with a 1.02 ERA and 81 strikeouts in 62 innings, with just eight walks. He will play both football and baseball at Massachusetts Maritime Academy next year.

3B – Ryan Baldwin, Sr., Fairhaven
One of the state’s leaders in home runs, Baldwin hit eight and batted in 34 runs, to finish the season with a .500 average and take South Coast Conference MVP honors. Baldwin will continue his career next year at Barry University (Fla.).

2B – Tommy Buonopane, Sr., St. John’s Prep
Another key cog to the Eagles’ impressive hitting order, Buonopane registered .354/.457/.585 totals with 21 RBI and three home runs, as the Eagles won the Catholic Conference outright. Buonopane is headed to the University of Rhode Island next year.
.354/.457/.585, 21 RBI, 3 HR

2B – Dan Connors, Sr., Danvers
A three-time Northeastern Conference All-Star, Connors captured the Small division’s MVP award after hitting .390, as the Falcons were the top seed in Division 2 North and reached the district final. Connors, a career .365 hitter, will enroll at UMass-Amherst in the fall.

LHP – Mac Curran, Sr., Coyle-Cassidy
A repeat selection, Curran was once again a force on the mound, going 5-2 with a 0.98 ERA as the Warriors captured the Eastern Athletic Conference outright. He also batted .402 with a home run. Curran is headed to Niagara University next season to continue his career.

C – Kyle Devin, Sr., Lynn Classical
One of the state's best arms behind the plate, Devin threw out eight of 12 steal attempts and also had 11 pickoffs. He also hit .410 with 16 RBI, five doubles, two triples, a home run and six stolen bases for the Rams. Devin is headed to Stony Brook next season to continue his baseball career.

SS – Isan Diaz, Jr., Springfield Central
One of the top defensive talents outside of Eastern Mass., Diaz showed off quite a bit with his bat as well, plating 19 runs and registering three home runs as the Golden Eagles once again reached the Division 1 West tournament.

RHP – Drew Foster, Sr., Nashoba
One of the steadiest starters in Central Mass., with a 4-1 record and 0.97 ERA, Foster led the Chieftains through a loaded Division 1 Central field to capture their first district title in program history. Foster is headed to Ohio University next year, where he intends to play club hockey.

RHP – Dustin Hunt, Sr., St. John’s Prep
Arguably the state’s top closer, Hunt embraced the role as the Eagles reeled off 22 straight wins before falling in the D1 North Final. On the season he struck out 31 batters in 27.1 innings, with a 1.54 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP. Hunt, an Andover resident, is headed to Northeastern University next season.

RHP – Thomas Jankins, Sr., Quaboag
Jankins was dangerous on the mound and in the batter's box this season for the Cougars. He hit .473 with 19 RBI and two home runs, and was 5-3 with a 0.53 ERA and 100 strikeouts in 52.1 innings. Jankins will continue his career next season at Quinnipiac University.

OF – Tom Landry, Sr., BC High
Landry registered .348/.378/.493 totals at the plate and added 16 RBI and two home runs for the Eagles, who reached their first D1 South Final since 2009. He also struck out just 11 times and drew four walks. Landry will play for Wheaton College next year.

SS – Steven Lee, Sr., Braintree
Lee manned the middle of the Wamps’ order for the last three years, and put up impressive numbers in his senior season. He batted .376 with 26 RBI, one home run, 27 runs scored and 10 stolen bases as Braintree captured its fourth straight Bay State Carey title. He also committed just five errors in the field. Lee is headed to Stonehill College next year.

RHP – David Longstreeth, Soph., Smith Academy
Longstreeth is already over the 300 career strikeout mark, with 21 wins, in his still-blossoming career for Smith. On the season, he went 11-2 with 132 strikeouts in 80.1 innings, as the Falcons reached the Division 3 West Final.

RHP – Mike Lundin, Sr., Silver Lake
Lundin helped lead the Lakers to a Patriot League Fisher division title with his proficiency on the mound, going 7-2 with 86 strikeouts in 65.1 innings with a 0.67 ERA. Lundin will continue his career at Massasoit Community College next season.

OF – Tyler Lyne, Sr., Agawam
Lyne was a catalyst for the Brownies, who won the Valley League and reached the Division 1 West Final. For the season, he registered 16 RBI and two home runs. Lyne will continue his career at Merrimack College next year.

RHP – Donny May, Sr., Coyle-Cassidy
The other overpowering ace for the Warriors’ staff, May went unbeaten as they captured the Eastern Athletic Conference outright. He was 11-0 on the year, with a 0.44 ERA and 89 strikeouts, along with a .438 batting average at the plate. May is headed to Fordham University next year.

SS – David Murphy, Sr., Plymouth North
The Atlantic Coast League’s MVP helped the Blue Eagles to another league title, hitting .429 with 29 RBI and three home runs. He only struck out twice all year. Murphy will take his talents to Massasoit Community College next year.

SS – Noah Parker, Sr., St. Mary (Westfield)
One of the more underappreciated talents across the state, Parker was the catalyst for the Saints, who reached the Division 3 West quarterfinals. Parker registered 28 hits, 20 RBI and two home runs on the season. He will head to Seton Hall University next season as a preferred walk-on.

OF – Anthony Perriello, Sr., Norwood
A powerful hitter manning the middle of the Mustangs’ order, Perriello led the Bay State Conference in batting average (.507) and added 15 RBI and a home run.

RHP – Alex Person, Sr., Xaverian
The Foxborough resident manned the top of the rotation, as the Hawks tried to defend their D1 state title. On the season he struck out 52 batters in 51 innings, going 5-1 with a 2.06 ERA. Person will continue his career at Southern New Hampshire University next year.

C – Matt Phelan, Sr., Northbridge
Phelan was a force at the plate for the Rams, who reached their fourth straight Division 2 Central Final. On the season he hit .484 with 28 RBI and four home runs, and on the mound was 4-1 with a 1.91 ERA. Phelan is headed to St. Anslem in the fall, where he will play football.

RHP – Brendan Ryan, Sr., Newton North
Ryan earned MVP honors in the Bay State Conference’s Carey division, after going 7-1 with a 1.64 ERA and six complete games. Ryan also batted .347 with 17 RBI. He will enroll at the University of South Carolina in the fall.

RHP – Endy Sanchez, Jr., Holyoke
Another member of the 100-K club, Sanchez had one of the best strikeout-to-ratios in Western Mass., fanning exactly 100 batters in 62 innings pitched for the Purple Knights.

RHP – Kevin Superko, Sr., Wellesley
Following in the footsteps of his brother Tim, Superko carried on the name holding down the front of the Raiders’ rotation. On the season he recorded 67 strikeouts in 49 innings, with a 1.02 WHIP and holding batters to a .184 average. He will do a post-graduate season at Philips Andover next year.

RHP – Ryley Warnock, Sr., North Reading
Warnock was dynamic both on the mound and on the basepath for the Hornets, who captured the top overall seed in D3 North. On the mound he was 10-1 with a 0.44 ERA and 72 strikeouts, and at the plate he was .360 with 17 stolen bases. Warnock will continue his career next year at the University of Rhode Island.

LHP – Cody Younger, Sr., Middleborough
Younger came on in the second half of the season and led the Sachems through a gauntlet en route to the Division 3 state title, their first since 1997. On the mound, he was 4-2 with 53 strikeouts and a 1.90 ERA, and delivered wins over the top two seeds in D3 South. At the plate, he had .415/.482/.507 totals with 27 RBI. Younger will do a post-graduate season at Bridgton Academy (Maine) next year.

RHP – Zach Zona, Sr., St. Peter-Marian
Zona led the top of the Guardians’ rotation as they came on late in the regular season to make the Division 1 Central tournament. On the season he was 5-2 with 64 strikeouts in 46.2 innings, with a 1.05 ERA and two no-hitters. Zona will continue his career next season at UMass-Lowell.

D1 North Baseball: Billerica 4, St. John's Prep 3

June, 9, 2013
6/09/13
9:26
PM ET
LOWELL, Mass. -- For 30 years, the mystique and aura of Atlanta Braves pitching great Tom Glavine has hung over the Billerica High School baseball program.

Glavine was on the mound pitching for Indians in 1983, the last time the school won the Division 1 North title. After the North title game Sunday, some on the team were left wondering if he had something to do with the team’s 4-3 victory over heavily-favored St. John’s Prep.

“We had an unknown person that came into our locker room and put on the bulletin board, ‘The Spirit of Tommy Glavine is with you,” said Billerica (18-6) coach Joe Higgins. “We don’t know who did it, but I’ll tell ya, I think his spirit and Gary DiSarcina’s spirit, they’re all here today. That was a great upset. The guys played great.”

The Indians got on the board against Prep (22-2) starter Justin Snyder in the second after back-to-back singles from Max Frawley (2-for-4) and Chris Murphy (3-for-3, 3 singles). On Murphy’s bloop hit to center, Frawley attempted to go first to third. The throw from center hit him in the back while he was running, sending the ball down the third base line, which allowed him to score easily.

Kyle Murphy (2-for-5) plated Robby Gambale in the third to give the team a 2-0 lead. Kyle got another RBI in the fifth when his double scored Eric Eknanian. He scored the eventual winning run after Mike Driscoll, Prep’s third pitcher of the afternoon, was called for a balk. Driscoll made a move towards third, but never stepped off the rubber, causing the umpires to award Murphy home plate.

Since Dylan Lavery and Max Frawley each threw at least eight innings in Billerica’s last two games, Higgins gave the ball to Murphy to start Sunday. He delivered, throwing 132 pitches in six innings, striking out eight while giving up three hits and walking six.

“I wanted to pound fastballs and try to get ahead on a lot of hitters,” he said after the game. “I knew after the first time through the lineup, they would be able to time the fastball since they’re a great hitting team. I worked in my change-up, which was really good for me today, and had a few good curveballs to catch them off balance. I threw a few to keep them thinking I had that in my back pocket.”

As Murphy said, Prep struck the second time through the lineup. In the third inning, after Alex Moore (1-for-2, two walks) singled and Brandon Bingel (0-for-3, two walks) walked, Keith Leavitt (1-for-5) laced a double down the right field line. Both runners scored, tying the game at two, but Leavitt was thrown out at third trying to stretch the double into a triple.

Prep added another run in the fifth when Tommy Buonopane (2-for-4) scored on a wild pitch.

The Eagles put a scare into the Billerica faithful in the final two innings, but could not score the tying run. It had runners on second and third with two outs in the eighth and runners on the corners with two outs in the ninth.

On both occasions, Gambale, who came on in relief of Murphy in the seventh, was able to force a ground-out, ending any chance Prep had of tying the score.

Guaranteeing victory: After Saturday’s 7-1 victory over Westford Academy, Bilerica’s Eric Eknanian said the best team was going to win Sunday, and he believed his team is the best and can play with anybody.

It is one thing for a player to proclaim something like that coming off the emotional high of a state tournament semi-final victory, and it is another for it to be instilled in the fabric of a team. That belief and confidence runs through the entire Billerica team.

“We believe that 100 percent,” said Robby Gambale. “We all have faith in it, we all believe in it, so we go out and prove it and do our job.”

While they agree on the talent and ability of the team, they were quick to acknowledge the potency and achievements of a Prep team that came into Sunday riding a 22-game winning streak and still gave them all they could handle.

“We just beat the best team in the state, they’ve been ranked No. 1 all year,” said Murphy. “If we play like that every day, we’re going to go out and win the state championship.”

As the teams exited the playing field on the way to their respective buses, some Prep players made it a point to seek out Murphy and Gambale and, in a show of good sportsmanship, congratulate them on the win and their quality pitching performances.

Recap: No. 2 St. John's Prep 6, No. 1 BC High 5

April, 24, 2013
4/24/13
10:14
PM ET
DORCHESTER, Mass. -– Dustin Hunt spun around, crouched and watched as a frozen rope launched by B.C. High's Dan Daugherty flew to deep center field with runners on first and third.

The St. John's Prep closer then pumped his fist and was swarmed by teammates when sophomore outfielder Keith Leavitt tracked it down, clinching a 6-5 win for the visiting Eagles.

"When it came off the bat I was like, 'Oh no.' It was hit so hard, and it kept going," St. John's Prep head coach Pat Yanchus said.

“It was a little nerve-wracking, but we definitely have faith in Dustin,” said Prep starter Brandon Bingel, who picked up a win after giving up four runs in five innings of work.

In the end, it was enough to propel No. 2 Prep (8-1) past previously undefeated No. 1 B.C. High (5-1).

After falling behind 3-1, Prep put together a five-run fifth inning to pull ahead of the host Eagles. Senior catcher Paul Crehan capped off the inning with a bases-clearing, three-run double to left field off of B.C. High starter Trent Berg, who left a fastball a little high.

Crehan had popped out in his previous two at bats and was looking for something he could hit a bit farther.

“I just didn't want to strike out, and the pitch came up high so I just hit it as far as I can. Anybody could be in that position, but I happened to be there,” he said. “I was pumped. I didn't know if the ball was going to go over (B.C. High left fielder Sean Webster's) head or not. The wind was blowing out, but I was pumped to see it go over his head.”

The B.C. High cut the lead to 6-4 in the bottom of the fifth inning when Tom Russo doubled in right fielder Tom Landry. They pulled within one with two outs in the seventh, but Hunt was able to complete the save with Daugherty's loud pop-out.

Berg effective in Losing Effort: Berg put together an impressive four-and-two-thirds innings for B.C. High. The lefty struck out eight Prep batters before senior Tommy Buonopane singled in pinch runner Nick Latham, kick-starting a five-run rally. Berg, who is more of a finesse pitcher, kept Prep off-balance with his two-seam fastball and looping curve.

Victory on the Basepaths: Latham's base running helped spark the Prep's fifth-inning surge. The sophomore pinch ran for Natty Cabral, who had been walked with two outs. He then stole both second and third base before scoring on Buonopane's in-field single.

“He's a smart baserunner, and he's pretty fast,” Yanchus said. “He's not just a good baserunner, but he's a good outfielder. We were going to put him in the next inning anyway, so might as well just have him run. It worked out nicely.”

Getting Away from the Heater: Bingel had a tough first inning for Prep, allowing three runs on three singles and a couple of infield errors. He said he used his fastball too much to start the game and was overthrowing. After the first inning, he settled down and used his slider to pitch three scoreless innings in a row.

“I started to pitch backwards, and that's what got be through the rest of the way,” he said

Injury Puts Damper on Win: Prep senior third baseman Tyler Noe suffered a dislocated right shoulder during the top of the fifth inning. After reaching second base on a Landry error, Noe stole third and B.C. High's Tom Russo landed on him awkwardly. He held his right arm and stood behind the Prep bench in a sling with ice on his shoulder. Yanchus said there was no timetable for his return, but his parents were taking him to the hospital to get checked out.

“That's his trowing arm and his good shoulder. It popped out, and it took him awhile to get it back in,” he said. “That's going to really hurt. He's great defensively, and he's our best baserunner. Hopefully he can come back.”

Enter Sandman: Hunt has had limited experience as closer for Prep but looked pretty solid against B.C. High. The Northeastern commit struck out three batters in two innings and had good control of the strike zone. He pitched two-thirds of an inning on Monday against Malden Catholic and needed only seven pitches to shut down the side.

Recap: No. 6 St. John's Prep 3, Malden Cath. 2

May, 7, 2012
5/07/12
11:57
PM ET
MALDEN, Mass. — Brandon Bingel sure didn’t look like a pitcher who went 10 innings in his last outing.

Bingel struck out six and didn’t allow a runner to reach base in three scoreless innings of relief as St. John’s Prep inched out a 3-2 victory at Malden Catholic (7-6) in a rare night game in the Catholic Conference.

The junior right-hander needed 44 pitches to get through his three innings after throwing 79 to go the distance and then some in the Eagles' last victory against Catholic Memorial.

“I felt pretty confident,” said Bingel, whose team is now 12-3 on the season. “I threw 10 innings against CM and it was a really good outing, so I was really confident. Everyone was swinging at the high fastball, so I just kept pumping that thing in.”

Bingel struck out five of the first six batters he saw and used a four-seam fastball with some good late movement on it to fool the Lancers hitters in a one-run ball game.

“He’s been tough all year,” said Prep head coach Pat Yanchus. “He gave up three real good innings after his last start, which was pretty incredible because I haven’t seen 79 pitches in 10 innings before.”

Wild Pitches in Wild Win: The Prep bats were quiet on a brisk night and only collected six hits against Jeremy Roberts and Paul Covelle. Instead, they used mistakes from the Lancers’ pitchers to their full advantage.

The Eagles scored all three of their runs on wild pitches to overcome their hitting woes.

In the first inning, Tommy Buonopane scored on a wild pitch to get the first run of the game, and Anthony Capuano got in standing up at home after a pitch from Roberts got away from Austin Batchelor.

In the top of the sixth inning, the Eagles capitalized again. Nick Sadler beat Covelle to the plate with a tremendous pop-up slide for the go-ahead run before Bingel shut things down.

“When I was coming down the line I didn’t even really see it,” said Sadler. “I saw the pitcher coming in fast and I thought he was going to overshoot the bag, so I just tapped the outside of the bag.”

Defense Comes Up Big: The Prep did have its share of miscues in the field, but there were several big plays to keep the Lancers from breaking the game open.

In the first inning, Nick Turco looked like he would score on a wild pitch by Bobby Woodworth, but Jake Barosin was able to shovel the baseball right to his pitcher to save a run.

Kenny Runge was gunned down at third with some aggressive baserunning on a perfect relay from Capuano, to the shortstop Bingel, to Tyler Noe at third.

Capuano also showed off his arm in right when he gunned down Anthony Carbone at the plate with a one-hop throw after Ryan January singled after the Lancers had plated two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning.

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