Shaver, Sheets lead Gatemen offensive outburst in win over Brewster

Over the past two games Wareham’s offense has looked like an entirely different animal.

After pouring out 13 hits yesterday against Yarmouth-Dennis, Wareham blasted out 13 more on Sunday night that included home runs out of Gavin Sheets and Colton Shaver, en route a 9-8 victory over Brewster at Stony Brook Field.

The Gatemen (8-6-1) ended up with four extra base hits in all, including two out of Sheets (home run, double).

Wareham coach Jerry Weinstein said the Gatemen offense is simply starting to hit its stride.

“We were very good offensive today,” said Weinstein. “Our middle of the order was tremendous. This is a game that takes time and you are not going to be world-beaters everyday. We have some very good players on this team and they are starting to show it.”

Heading into the top of the fifth inning Wareham found itself in a 3-0 hole, and through the first four frames look badly fooled by Brewster starter Alex Soto.

That all seemed to change right then as Jonathan Engelmann (Michigan) grounded a single up the middle for a one out hit, and two batters later, Joey Bartosic (George Washington) knocked a base his of his own into centerfield putting runners on the corners with two men down.

Second baseman Cole Freeman (Louisiana State University) came up the plate and used his speed to get Wareham on the board. Freeman lunged for a change up on the outer third of the plate and knocked it slowly to Brewster shortstop Logan Warmoth.

Warmoth came in on the run, fielded the grounder, and fired to first but it was to no avail as the speedy Freeman beat Warmoth’s throw by a half stride bringing in Engelmann and cutting the Brewster lead to 3-1.

From there, the floodgates seemed to open up.

Alex Destino (South Carolina) followed up Freeman’s hit with an RBI single, scoring Bartosic and moving Freeman over to third.

Wareham’s two power bats came up to the plate in Shaver and Sheets, and both proved why they are two of the top home run threats in the entire Cape Cod Baseball League.

On the first offering he saw, Shaver belted a long fly ball down the left field line that was hooking towards foul territory as it continued to travel. Before it was able to finally turn into foul ground, however, it dinged off the bottom of the foul pole for a three-run home run, giving Wareham a 5-3 edge within the blink of an eye.

Shaver did not even have time to finish celebrating with his teammates in the dugout when Sheets got in on the action, belting a solo shot well over the fence in right field to put Wareham on top 6-3.

It was the first time this year that the Gatemen had hit back-to-back home runs.

“We are being much more aggressive at the plate obviously,” said Sheets on the Gatemen’s offensive approach. “Instead of watching a few go by we have been swinging at fastballs early in the count and we are starting to hit the ball hard.”

Brewster was able to get back within two, 7-5, in the bottom of the seventh on a Warmouth solo home run to left, but the Gatemen responded with two of their own in the top half of the eighth to maintain some separation.

Engelmann and Freeman each were able to work their way on with a walk, and on a 3-2 pitch, Destino belted a two run double into left centerfield, putting Wareham on top 9-5.

The Whitecaps, as they did all evening, continued to scratch and claw. Three singles, a hit by pitch, and a wild pitch helped produce three runs in the bottom of the eighth bringing Brewster within just one, 9-8.

Wareham reliever Jake Walters, however, settled down, retiring four of the last five batters he faced to preserve the win.

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