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Offensive Powers Clash as Chatham hosts Falmouth

by Chris Jones
Saturday, July 20, 2013

Chatham Anglers
After pulling out a wild 10-7 victory against Bourne at Doran Park, the Anglers will look to notch their 22nd win, and clinch at least a .500 record as they return to Veterans Field to take on Falmouth.

The Anglers are currently on a two-game winning streak, with both wins coming against Western Division teams that are close to clinching a playoff spot. For Manager John Schiffner, its all about showing the talent of his team to the league's best.

"We have just beaten two playoff teams that could make a run late in the postseason," Schiffner said. "Its all about sending a message to these teams, and showing these guys what a talented ball club we are."

Facing another potential title contending team, Schiffner will hand the ball to right-hander Lukas Schiraldi (Texas), who will make his sixth start of the season. In his past three starts, Schiraldi is 2-0 and has only allowed two earned runs while striking out 12 over 16 innings pitched.

photo by Chelsea Capwell/Chatham Anglers
Lukas Schiraldi (Texas) will get the start for the Anglers.
He is 3-0 and has only allowed two earned runs in his last three starts

Schiraldi will be given the task of slowing down the Commodores potent offense, which leads the league with a .272 team batting average. The Commodores also lead the league in home runs with 22.

Casey Gillaspie (Wichita State), Rhys Hoskins (Sacramento State) and Dylan Davis (Oregon State) lead the powerful Falmouth offensive attack. Gillaspie leads the league in home runs with six, Hoskins leads the league in RBI with 26, and Davis has contributed five home runs and 21 RBI of his own.

Chatham will match Falmouth's power with some of their own, as Connor Joe (San Diego), J.D Davis (Cal State Fullerton), and Jimmy Pickens (Michigan State) have been lethal in the middle of the order. All three batters are hitting over .300 in the past week, while contributing a combined total 18 RBI, four home runs, six doubles, and 12 runs scored for the Anglers.

Joe was the hero in Friday's win over Bourne, a game in which he went five-for-five at the plate with four RBI and two home runs in Chatham's win over the Braves. Joe has been crushing the ball as of late, hitting .478 with eight RBI in the past week.

The night before, Davis and Pickens helped lead the Anglers offense to an 11-8 victory over Cotuit. In that game, Davis collected three hits and three RBI, two of them coming from a mammoth two-run home run. Pickens also added two hits and an RBI.

"Thats quite the 1-2-3 punch in the middle of our lineup," Schiffner said. "I know I wouldn't want to face them."

The Chatham offense has been on fire since coming off of their off day, totaling 21 runs, 18 hits, and 16 walks in the past two games, both victories.

In Falmouth's previous, and only, trip to Veterans Field this season, the Anglers defeated the Commodores 4-2 on June 17, part of Chatham's 6-0 record to start the season.

Falmouth starter Brandon Magallones (Northwestern) will look to tame the Anglers offense. Magallones is 1-0 with a 1.68 ERA in five appearances this season. In his last start, he only allowed one hit in seven dominant innings, as Falmouth beat Y-D 5-0.

With a win tonight, the Anglers will surpass last year's win total, and will assure themselves of avoiding a losing season. According to Schiffner, this team is a special group,

"It has been such a pleasure to coach these guys," Schiffner said. "They always battle, they buy into what the coaches tell them, and it has really paid dividends."

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.