Anglers Rally Big, Advance with Series Sweep of Y-D
by Chris Jones Wednesday, August 07, 2013
With the help of a big eighth inning rally, the Chatham Anglers completed the clean sweep of Y-D with the 9-4 victory and advanced to the East Division Championship Series with the 9-4 victory over the Red Sox.
"We did not want to go into an elimination game tomorrow, and we got the job done today," Manager John Schiffner said.
After a 6-0 win in game one on Tuesday, the Anglers came in confident in their chances, and it showed, as they jumped on Y-D starter James Kaprielian (UCLA) for two runs in the first inning.
Jimmy Pickens (Michigan State) put Chatham on the board first on a one-out RBI single that scored Landon Lassiter (North Carolina), then Michael Russell (UNC) followed it up with an RBI single of his own.
Before even throwing a pitch, Chatham starter Tommy Lawrence (Maine) had a two run cushion to work with. He cruised through five innings, allowing no earned runs while striking out six Red Sox hitters.
"He (Lawrence) definitely did not have his best stuff today, but he continued to battle and grind," Schiffner said. "Other pitchers would have caved in, but he did not. He kept getting the outs he needed."
In the sixth inning, Chatham led 2-1, but errors and miscues plagued the Anglers, and gave Y-D the lead. The Red Sox tied the game with no outs in the frame when J.D Davis let a ball get under his glove, allowing Alex Blandino to score the tying run. A Matthew Honchel (Miami OH) single scored DJ Stewart (Florida State) to give Y-D the 3-2 lead, still with no outs.
After a sacrifice bunt, David Speer (Columbia) entered the game with runners at second and third, but got the second out on a groundout to first, then Jacob Dorris (Texas A&M Corpus Christi) shut the door, picking up a strikeout to end the threat without further damage.
photo by Graham Harboe/Chatham Anglers J.D Davis (Cal State Fullerton) broke the game open with one swing with his grand slam in the 8th inning. The Anglers have two grand slams in the past two games.
The Anglers found themselves trailing for the first time in the playoffs, but were not phased, as an RBI fielder's-choice from J.D Davis (Cal State Fullerton) tied the game at 3-3.
After a shutdown seventh inning from Dorris, Chatham came right back at it.
Blake Butera gave the Anglers the lead for good as he perfectly placed an RBI single to center field with two outs, giving Chatham a 4-3 lead. On his birthday, Butera went 2-4 with the RBI and a run scored.
"I had a plan going into that at-bat," Butera said. "I was waiting on a slider, and I got it."
With the bases loaded, Lassiter gave the Anglers an insurance run with an RBI single of his own, giving the Anglers a 5-3 lead. Still with two outs, Davis broke the game wide open with a grand slam, making it a 9-3 game.
"I hadn't been able to square up a ball all game, but luckily I finally got to square one up and it went over for a grand slam. It felt pretty good," Davis said.
The Anglers now have two grand slams in the past two playoff games. For Davis, who had had a frustrating game up to that point, the grand slam made up for everything beforehand.
"I had not had a good game going into that at-bat, so I was pretty frustrated," Davis said. "I kind of put all of that aside, got a hold of a ball, and it just happened to go over the fence."
With one swing of the bat, Davis silenced the Red Sox fans at "Red" Wilson Field. All that could be heard outside of the Anglers dugout was the sound of closing folding chairs, as the Y-D faithful headed towards the parking lot with Chatham leading 9-3.
Despite allowing a solo home run to DJ Stewart in the next frame, Dorris completed his second inning of shutdown relief. Over 2.1 innings out of the bullpen, Dorris only allowed two hits and the one run, while striking out three.
"He slammed the door shut on them," Schiffner said. "He has done that all season."
photo by Graham Harboe/Chatham Anglers The Anglers won their first playoff series since 2001 with the East Division series sweep against Y-D
Dominic Moreno (Texas Tech) entered in the ninth inning, and got the powerful Stewart to strike out swinging to end the game, and send the Anglers to the East Division Championship series. The sweep of the Red Sox was Chatham's first playoff series win since 2001.
Dante Flores had a good day at the plate, collecting two hits, one walk, and scored two runs in the winning effort.
Landon Lassiter also had two hits on the day, along with an RBI, a walk, and two runs scored.
With the Harwich/Orleans series going to a decisive third game, the Anglers will have the luxury of an off day to rest and wait to see who their opponent will be.
"It was great getting the win today, and getting the sweep instead of having to play a game three," Butera said. "We can get some rest, relax, and it saves our pitchers as well."
For Schiffner, the dream season continues for at least two more games.
"This team is incredible. They continue to battle, and refuse to lose. It has really been a dream season for me as a manager, and I am glad it can keep going," Schiffner said.