By SEAN TENAGLIA (Gatemen Beat Writer)
WAREHAM, MA: It’s tough to win ballgames with only two hits. Although the Wareham Gatemen were really never out of contention in game two of their Sunday afternoon doubleheader at Yarmouth-Dennis, they did learn that lesson the hard way.
After falling to the Red Sox 7-2 in game one at Red Wilson Field, the Gatemen (1-4) dropped the back end of their Sunday doubleheader, 3-1. The Wareham lineup was only able to tag Yarmouth-Dennis starting pitcher Josh Staumont (Azusa Pacific) for two hits and one run over 5.0 innings. Wareham Head Coach Cooper Farris expressed a mix of frustration and confusion with his team’s offensive woes.
“We aren’t on time at all with our bats,” Farris said. “Our front feet are late, and it looks like everything that we’re doing is going away from us instead of toward the pitcher. We’re going to try to alleviate that problem tomorrow.
“Right now, we’re playing like we’re beat down a little bit. I’m not sure why that is because we haven’t done anything different. We’re just late with everything. I don’t know if these guys are already tired, but we’re going to try to make some adjustments tomorrow.”
A bright spot for the Gatemen was the outing for starting pitcher Kyle Cody (Kentucky), who made his first appearance of the summer. Cody, who was ranked the seventh-best sophomore in the 2014 Baseball America collegiate rankings, showed flashes of brilliance in his return to the team. In 3.0 innings of work, the 6-7 right-hander struck out six Red Sox batters, while allowing only three hits and one run. Catcher Chris Chinea (LSU), who made his first start after joining the team a few days earlier, was impressed with Cody’s performance on the mound.
“The guy is a horse,” Chinea said. “It was fun catching him. He was pounding the zone, and that’s always fun. He had a great outing today.”
Chinea showed off his defensive prowess behind the plate, gunning down Yarmouth-Dennis designated hitter Rob Fonseca (Northeastern) at second base in the second inning. He also made a great play in front of the plate to throw out Red Sox centerfielder, and LSU teammate, Andrew Stevenson at first. The two LSU Tigers shared a chuckle on Stevenson’s way back to the third base dugout.
The Red Sox finally got to Cody in the bottom of the third, loading the bases with one out. They took a 1-0 lead on a slow roller from shortstop Donnie Walton (Oklahoma State) that second baseman Kramer Robertson (LSU) could not corral. Cody escaped another bases loaded jam by getting the next two batters to strike out.
Right-hander Ryan Olson (San Diego) threw well in relief of Cody, but his efforts would not be enough to give the Gatemen a win. Sacrifice flies from third baseman A.J. Simcox (Tennessee) in both the fourth and sixth innings gave the Red Sox all the insurance they would need.
Gatemen left fielder Preston Palmeiro (NC State) scored the only run for Wareham after singling to right field in the top of the fifth. Heads-up base running allowed Palmeiro to advance one base at a time on two wild pitches and a pass ball from Yarmouth-Dennis starter Staumont, until eventually crossing the plate.
With six new players arriving to Wareham in the past few days, Farris acknowledged that the team is still trying to pull things together.
“We’ve got practice tomorrow, and we have to get our defenses together,” Farris said. “We’ll definitely do some stuff with the bats tomorrow too. I told them we’re going to do something a little different with our batting practice.”
While recognizing that the team needs to play more consistently, Chinea remained upbeat about the outlook for the Gatemen.
“I believe we need to hit in the clutch a little more,” Chinea said. “Our pitching kept us in the game, but we didn’t back them up. Other than that, I think it’s going to be a good summer.”
The Gatemen will be back in action Tuesday night at home for a matchup with the Hyannis Harbor Hawks (7 p.m. ET). We’ll see what a day of rest and practice can do to turn things around for the team.
As always, you can watch the live stream of the game by accessing our “Gatemen Pressbox” page. The pre-game show begins around 6:40 p.m. Like the Wareham Gatemen Baseball Facebook page and follow @WarehamGatemen for all the latest news on the team.
“Coop’s Scoop” Post Game Interview with Coach Farris
Gatemen Player of the Game Kyle Cody
Gatemen Broadcast Team Game Highlights