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Anglers Offense Looking for Spark Against Falmouth

by Chris Jones
Saturday, June 22, 2013

Anglers Offense Looking for Spark Against Falmouth
It has been 18 innings since the Chatham Anglers last got on the board, as they have endured two straight 1-0 losses after a six game winning streak to start the season.

Angler hitters have run into two starters in as many nights, Jaron Long (Ohio State) for the Bourne Braves on Wednesday night, and Cy Sneed (Dallas Baptist) for Hyannis last night, who have held the Chatham lineup silent.

For Coach John Schiffner, it is all about the hitters making adjustments.

"It's mostly because of the pitchers, We are in the Cape League, you aren't going to face a bad pitcher," Schiffner said. "We were hitting well in the first six games, we just need to make adjustments."

Although the Anglers only mustered two hits in the game, they had the winning run at the plate in Connor Joe (San Diego) with two outs in the ninth inning and Jimmy Pickens (Michigan State) at second base.

Joe struck-out to end the game, but Schiffner was pleased with how his team battled late in the game.

"After the game, I told the team how proud of them I was," Schiffner said. "A coach can not ask for more than getting the winning run to the plate with two outs in the bottom of the ninth."

photo by Chelsea Capwell/Chatham Anglers
Matt Gage (Siena) looks to pick up his first win in his second start

In search of their first win since Tuesday, the Anglers will travel to Falmouth to take on the Commodores. Chatham faced Falmouth on Monday, where they recorded a 4-2 win. On the mound in his second appearance of the season will be left-hander Matt Gage (Siena). In his season debut, Gage allowed three earned runs and struck out two in 4.2 innings pitched against the Y-D Red Sox.

"He has a lot of consistency in everything he does," pitcher Lukas Schiraldi (Texas) said. "He throws strikeouts and gets outs."

On the mound trying to give Chatham their third straight loss of the season will be right-hander Craig Schlitter (Bryant). In his first start of the season, Schlitter threw five innings, only giving up one earned run and striking out four in Falmouth's 7-1 loss to Cotuit. For Bryant in 2013, Schlitter went 10-4 in 14 starts, with a 2.58 ERA and 80 strikeouts. Schlitter was featured in the first Cape Leauge MVP tracker.

Falmouth first-baseman Rhys Hoskins (Sacramento State) leads the league in home runs (2), and is hitting for a .305 average with six RBI. Shortstop Richard Martin Jr. leads the league in stolen bases with eight.

After only collecting six hits in the past two games, the Anglers have fallen to second in the league in hitting, as they are now only batting .257 as a team. On the other hand, the Anglers are now tied for the league lead in pitching with a team earned run average of 1.67.

Chatham will be getting some reinforcements in the next couple of weeks, as infielder/pitcher J.D. Davis (Cal State Fullerton), right-handed pitcher Kyle Funkhouser (Louisville) are due to arrive. Infielders Landon Lassiter (North Carolina) and Michael Russell (North Carolina) are due to arrive in the next couple of weeks after the Tar Heels were eliminated from the College World Series on Friday.

Funkhouser had a 2.14 earned-run average in 22 appearances for the Cardinals in 2013, Davis hit .318 and had a 2.74 ERA in 16 pitching appearances for Cal State Fullerton. Lassiter hit .358 with 28 RBI as a freshman for North Carolina.

The Anglers still sit atop the Eastern Division, and with players still yet to arrive, Schiffner is feeling confident about his team.

"We are very pleased right now," Schiffner said. "You never know when someone is going to get hurt, so having some more guys who can play multiple positions will definitely help. It will definitely make us stronger."

The Anglers will look to stay unbeaten and improve to 5-0 as they return home to play the Falmouth Commodores. First pitch is at 6:30 p.m. Tune into the Anglers Extra Pregame Show at 6:10 p.m. for live coverage with broadcasters Brandon Liebhaber and Keith Zubrow at TRZ Teamline or call 1-800-846-4700, code 3841.