Following consecutive home games, the Chatham Anglers (2-1) are back on the road Sunday at 7 p.m. against the Hyannis Harbor Hawks (0-3). The Anglers are coming off a 9-2 beatdown of the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox (1-2) on Saturday night at Veterans Field. Sunday night's game marks the third time this season that Chatham faces a Western Division foe.
Right-hander Ryan Thompson
(Franklin Pierce) will take the mound for the Anglers. In 2012, Thompson went 5-2 with a 3.47 ERA and 51 strikeouts for the Ravens.
"Ryan's got a good mix of pitches and he had a solid year for his college team," said assistant coach Mike McMenamin
who is now in his second year with the team. "We're just looking for a solid start from Ryan. We've gotten three solid starts from our pitchers so far this year."
(Michigan State) will be on the bump for the Harbor Hawks on Sunday night. The righty had a productive spring for the Spartans and posted a 6-3 record with a 3.28 ERA and 75 strikeouts in just 74 innings. Garner will look to provide a boost for a Hyannis pitching staff that has already given up 24 hits this season and walked 12 hitters.
"David's a very good pitcher. He throws pretty hard," said catcher John Martinez
(Michigan State). "He's also got a good slider and he throws a lot of strikes. We're going to have to be aggressive against him." Martinez is not only a teammate of Garner's in East Lansing, but he also acts as Garner's personal catcher during the regular season. "I've built a pretty good relationship with David during our time together at school," he said.
On Sunday night, Chatham will try to replicate its offensive production from Saturday's win against Yarmouth-Dennis, where the team totaled 10 hits. The Anglers received a great deal of production from the middle of their lineup, which accounted for six of the 10 hits. Infielder Chad Pinder
(Virginia Tech) has thrived in the third spot in the order and the cleanup role for Chatham. Pinder is hitting .444 on the season with 3 RBI and a double. Chatham has also gotten help from the bottom of its order, especially from left fielder Aaron Brown
(Pepperdine), who is hitting .667 so far with 3 RBI and three doubles. If the Anglers can get some base runners early in the game, they could put both Pinder and Brown in position to drive in some runs.
Chatham will once again look to its defense to deliver a strong performance on Sunday night. This season, the Anglers have committed just two errors. Chatham has also been steady on the rubber early on, posting a 3.00 ERA and allowing just nine earned runs. The Anglers will look to attack a Harbor Hawk lineup that has just a .167 team batting average on the season. If Chatham can shut down Hyannis' hitters early, the Anglers will have a great opportunity to focus on their hitting and build a lead.
Sunday's game will ultimately come down to the question of momentum. After hitting the ball well on Saturday night, the question remains how the Anglers will respond on the following day. Constantly stressing the importance of staying in the moment, the coaching staff has repeatedly told the team to approach the season one game at a time.
"We just tell the guys to come out ready to play the next day," said McMenamin. "By taking it one day at a time, it simplifies the game."
For coverage of tonight's game, listeners should tune in a 6:40 p.m. Chatham broadcasters Brandon Liebhaber and Chris Fitzgerald will be on the air at TRZ Teamline
. Listeners can also call 1-800-846-4700, code 3841.