There were no late-inning heroics for Chatham on Sunday afternoon against the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox, but the Anglers were able to improve to 4-0 on the season with an 8-5 win. For the undefeated Anglers, confidence is at a high point.
"I havent heard of a Cape team that has been 4-0," catcher Brandon Sedell (Nova Southeastern) said. "Its a good accomplishment, but we just have to keep at it."
Chatham's bats were held silent through the first four innings, and Y-D struck first in the fourth inning off of an RBI single by left-fielder Jeffrey Keller (Dartmouth College). The lead would not last long, as the Angler bats awoke and exploded for five runs in the top of the fifth inning.
The bottom of the order started the scoring for the Anglers, as doubles from A.J. Murray (Georgia Tech) and Dante Flores (USC) got Chatham on the board and tied the game. The Anglers then pulled ahead on the next batter with another RBI double, this time from Blake Butera (Boston College).
With Chatham up 3-1 already, Sedell broke the game open with a bases-loaded, two RBI double that almost left the ballpark. The Anglers would send all nine batters to the plate in the inning, and would end the frame with a 5-1 lead. They would add three more runs in the sixth inning.
Butera helped spark the offensive outburst, with three hits and two RBI in five at-bats from the leadoff spot, but he also shined on the defensive side of the ball. Butera's performance on both sides of the ball caught the eye from coach John Schiffner.
"He (Butera) had a great game," Schiffner said. "He contributed offensively and made some great plays in the field."
For Butera, just getting the win was enough for him.
"We're swinging the bats and throwing the ball well right now," Butera said. "I'll take a win like this any day."
The Anglers forced a total of seven walks in the game, including one from Richard Prigatano (Long Beach State) with the bases loaded to drive in a run in the fifth inning. Plate discipline and being patient has been something the coaching staff has emphasized so far this season.
"When you swing at bad pitches, the coaching staff will let you know," Sedell said. "I think we have good enough hitters to go out and be disciplined."
The Anglers got 4.2 solid innings from starter Matt Gage (Siena), who struck out two and only allowed three runs in his outing. For Gage, he attributes most of his success on the night to the offense.
"Pitching with the lead is one of the easiest things to do," Gage said. "When the offense is hitting, there isnt as much pressure on the pitching staff. We dont feel like we have to be perfect."
Chad Sobotka (South Carolina- Upstate) did not allow a hit in his 2.1 innings of work Photo by Chelsea Capwell
The star of the pitching staff on Sunday was RHP Chad Sobotka (South Carolina- Upstate), who blew a save on Friday against Cotuit, but rebounded and dominated the Red Sox lineup, not giving up a hit and striking out one in 2.1 innings pitched. Sobotka's rebound performance impressed Schiffner.
"He really had a great performance, which was good to see," Schiffner said. "You could see he had that good swagger back afterwards."
Sobotka's outing also caught the eye from the rest of the pitching staff.
"He was amazing," Gage said. "He is going to be key to our bullpen. If he keeps throwing like that, hes going to win some games, and save some."
After Y-D picked up two runs in the bottom of the eighth, the game was called due to darkness. RHP Joe Goodman (High Point) got the save, as he came in and got the last out of the inning.
As the team heads into their fifth game of the season, still without a loss, Schiffner is feeling good about where his team stands.
"You have to feel good at this point," Schiffner said. "I like the way were playing all around. We're in a real good stretch."
The Anglers will return home Monday to Veterans Field to play the Falmouth Commodores, a game that was postponed due to rain on Thursday. First pitch is at 7 p.m. Tune into the Anglers Extra Pregame Show at 6:40 p.m. for live coverage with broadcasters Brandon Liebhaber and Keith Zubrow at TRZ Teamline or call 1-800-846-4700, code 3841.