Game 8 Preview: Bourne at Chatham
On Sunday night, although talks of a potential postponement arose due to poor field conditions, Chatham fell to Cotuit 6–2. The loss marked the Anglers’ second to the Kettleers in the last four days.
Entering the contest, the A’s were undefeated at Veterans Field. A 16-strikeout performance, however, paired with conceding eight combined walks, resulted in Chatham’s fourth loss of the 2023 season. It currently sits in fourth place in the East Division, sandwiched between Harwich and the Firebirds.
Bourne, on the other hand, has the worst record in the Cape League. At 1–5–1, the Braves garnered their first win, an 8–6 result, of the summer against Hyannis on Friday after totaling 12 hits and seven walks.
Here’s everything you need to know before Chatham’s (2–4–1 East) home showdown with Bourne (1–5–1 West):
Brody Brecht (Iowa): In his first start—facing Orleans—the Hawkeye tallied five strikeouts and allowed just one hit in a 2–0 victory. A rising junior, Brecht previously suited up as a wide receiver for Iowa’s football team in 2021 and 2022 before deciding to concentrate on baseball. Monday’s matchup with Bourne could potentially be Brecht’s last as he plans to leave for USA Camp by the end of June.
Henry Weycker (Virginia Tech): Weycker was excellent in his first appearance with Bourne against Falmouth. Though the contest ended in a 3–3 tie, the lefty struck out two batters to keep the Commodores scoreless across four innings. At Virginia Tech this past year, Weycker enjoyed a season-high 10 K’s in an opening-day victory over Charleston.
Chatham Players To Watch
Tate Ballestero (St. John’s): A multifaceted utility player, Ballestero can, and has played, anywhere on the field. On Sunday, he was the Anglers’ lone source of energy in their 6–2 loss to Cotuit as he notched two of Chatham’s seven total hits, one of which was an RBI single.
Aidan Meola (Oklahoma State): While Meola failed to post a single hit in five at-bats during his debut, expect him to find his stride against the Braves. In 2023, Meola averaged .330 at the plate with the Cowboys and charted 18 RBIs in 27 games.
Bourne Players To Watch
Kodey Shojinaga (Kansas): Having already registered a whopping 25 at-bats with Bourne, Shojinaga averages .400, has produced five walks, and has two RBIs in seven games. Coming off of his freshman year at Kansas, Shojinaga was unanimously named to the Big 12 All-Freshman Team and earned Big 12 Co-Freshman of the Year honors.
Jackson Castillo (College of Southern Nevada): Castillo is set to transfer to Auburn next season after manufacturing a .432 batting average with the Coyotes. So far this summer, he’s enjoyed two RBIs in seven hits and, despite a 6–4 loss to Orleans on June 12, Castillo smashed his first home run of the 2023 Cape League season.
Number To Know: .230
Chatham’s .230 batting average ranks third-worst in the CCBL. Most recently, the Anglers’ poor at-bats resulted in 16 strikeouts and just 24 hits in the last three games.
“We walked too many guys and too many guys struck out, that’s just what happened,” outfielder Lyle Miller-Green said after the A’s seven-hit, 6–2 loss to the Kettleers.
Last Time They Played
Last season, the Anglers suffered three losses to Bourne before a 1–1 tie on July 30. Chasing the East division’s final playoff spot, Chatham opted to play lefty pitcher Ben Hampton through all nine-innings. Hampton went on to throw the first complete game in the CCBL since 2017. A’s manager Tom Holliday said it was the best outing he had ever seen during his four-year tenure at the helm.
Roc Riggio's home run provided the Anglers with their only hit. The tie was Chatham’s league-leading ninth tie.