The Chatham Anglers (19-9-1) were shut down in their 3-0 loss to Harwich on Tuesday, which snapped their five-game winning streak.
The Anglers offense was stymied by Chandler Shepherd (Kentucky) and the Mariners pitching staff, only managing three hits. Despite the lack of production, Manager John Schiffner
still likes what he sees from his hitters.
"We had to tip our cap to them, they had some great pitchers," Schiffner said. "I like what are guys are doing. They are not fooling around in the dugout, they are talking to each other about how to handle a pitcher. These guys are a team."
The road will not get any easier for the Chatham lineup, as they will take on the Cotuit Kettleers (18-11) on Thursday, in a battle of two of the top teams in the Cape League.
Right-hander Evan Beal (South Carolina) will get the start for the Kettleers, looking to keep the keep the Anglers offense silent. On the season, Beal holds a 1-2 record in five appearances (two starts) despite an impressive 1.68 earned run average.
Beal has one appearance against Chatham this season, in which he gave up five hits and three runs in two innings pitched, and was dealt the loss as Cotuit fell to the Anglers 6-4 on June 24.
Chatham left-hander Andrew McGee
(Monmouth) got the win in that game, giving up one run and striking out eight over seven innings, and he will get the start for the Anglers on Thursday against the Kettleers.
Mcgee is 2-1 on the season with a 2.84 ERA, but struggled in his last outing, as he gave up eight hits and five earned runs in a loss to the Y-D Red Sox.
Before that start, McGee was undefeated on the season, and had a 1.23 ERA with a league-leading 23 strikeouts.
Cotuit will have a big hole to fill in their lineup, as infielder Mike Ford (Princeton) left the team after signing with the New York Yankees. Ford led the league in batting average (.407), slugging percentage (.663), and home runs (5).
Infielder Danny Diekroeger (Stanford) will look to help fill the void for the Kettleers. In 13 games played this season, he is hitting for a .325 average with six runs scored this season.
In their 30th game of the season, the Anglers are searching for their 20th win. In 2012, they finished the season with 21 wins.
With 15 games left in the season, The Anglers still sit comfortably in first place of the Eastern Division, seven points ahead of second-place Harwich.
The Anglers had an off day on Wednesday, and Schiffner has no doubt that his team will bounce back strong.
"We will bounce back. There is no question," Schiffner said.
First pitch 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.
Chris Jones is the Beat Writer and Social Media Manager for the Chatham Anglers. Follow him on twitter at @Chrisjones_UO, and follow the Chatham Anglers at @ChathamAnglers.