Preview: Gatemen look to punch their ticket to CCBL playoffs

Wareham (19-14-3) vs. Brewster (14-20-2)

Probable Starting Pitchers: WAREHAM – Dalton Horton (1-1, 3.60 ERA), LHP; BREWSTER – Zachary Lowther (2-1, 3.24 ERA), LHP 

Preview: The past three years have been nothing short of frustrating for the Wareham Gatemen. After winning the Cape Cod Baseball League Championship in 2012, the Gatemen failed to make the postseason in 2013 and 2014, and only qualified for the postseason in 2015 on the last day of the season before ultimately getting swept in the first round. On Tuesday evening, the Gatemen hope to leave those dark days in the dust for good when they head to Brewster, looking to clinch a playoff spot with more than a week to go in the regular season. Currently sitting at a magic number of one, either a Wareham win or a Cotuit loss on Tuesday will guarantee the Gatemen a spot in the 2016 Cape Cod Baseball League playoffs.

Dalton Horton hopes to lead the charge in Wareham’s pursuit of that aforementioned playoff spot as he makes his second start for the Gatemen. His only start up to this point came back on July 13, where he struggled mightily against the Falmouth Commodores due to what Wareham coach Jerry Weinstein attributed to a lack of, “fastball command, causing him to try and cover it up with his change-up.” In his last outing, a relief appearance against Harwich on July 18, Horton was far more effective going three shutout innings while giving up just one hit. On the year, over three games, Horton is 1-1, surrendering nine hits in 10 innings, and striking out four leading to a 3.60 ERA.

Brewster, meanwhile, is attempting to grab ahold of the fourth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Division. The Whitecaps, due in large part to their recent struggles (3-6-1 in last 10 games), reside just three points ahead of Chatham for fourth place. All season long, the Whitecaps have been bolstered by an offense that sits first in the League in hits, home runs, RBIs, total bases, batting average, slugging, on base percentage, and OPS. Additionally, they rank second in doubles (50), and third in triples (six). In large part, however, that has all been for naught due to a staff ERA that currently sits a 4.78 and has given up 71 extra base hits. Zachary Lowther is given the task to reverse that trend on Tuesday, getting his third start of the season. While it may be only his third start, Lowther has 10 appearances in total, compiling 25 innings in the process. Known for his swing and miss repertoire, Lowther – a rising junior out of Xavier – has 45 strikeouts over those 25 innings while giving up just 15 hits and walking three. He has a fastball that sits in the low 90s to go with a sweeping curveball.

News & Notes:

. Wareham’s Cole Freeman currently leads the league in batting with a .386 average

. Brewster starter Zachary Lowther is atop the leader boards in strikeouts with 45

. The Gatemen’s six game winning streak is their longest since 2012

West Division Standings    W        L       T      PTS

Falmouth                                        23      13       0       46

Wareham                                       19        14      3        41

Hyannis                                          17        19      0        34

Bourne                                            16       18       2        34

Cotuit                                              12       23       1        25


Game Time: 5:00pm, Stony Brook Field Field, Brewster

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