That was thanks in large part to deep, experienced pitching.
For Swampscott, the rotation was a three-headed monster of seniors Kevin Rogers, Brian Hayes and Mike DeSimone. In fact, the Big Blue’s lone loss came late in the season in a makeup with Beverly and was the only time they played four games in a week all year (meaning they had to go beyond the Big Three).
Rogers was the team’s ace, going 8-0 in the regular season with a 1.00 earned run average and 50 strikeouts. Hayes was 7-0 during the regular season and DeSimone chipped in with five wins.
“The funny thing about Mike was he was such a great pitcher growing up — I think he struck out 17 in a Little League game once — and then became a great hitter in college,” said Jason Calichman, Swampscott’s current head coach who was a sophomore in 1993.
“Those guys, especially Rogers, challenged hitters. They didn’t walk anybody; I bet you could count their high school walks on one hand. They didn’t mess around, they worked fast and went right after the hitters.”
Rogers beat Wayland in the state tournament opener and earned his 10th win in an 8-1 romp over Bedford in the North final. In between, the Big Blue came from behind to beat Arlington Catholic in the bottom of the seventh, and Hayes fought through soreness by messaging his shoulder with a rubber ball to beat Medfield, 6-3, in the EMass final.
The bulk of Danvers’ pitching prowess came from their Killer B’s: Chris Bowser and Jeremy Bourgeois. Bowser was the ace, winning a DHS record 11 games and throwing 63 innings. He threw a 2-hitter in the state final, an 8-0 victory over Oxford, and struck out nine in an incredibly composed effort to beat Reading in the North final.