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Game 18 Preview: Hyannis at Chatham

by Graham Dietz
Saturday, July 01, 2023

Game 18 Preview: Hyannis at Chatham
Chatham broke its four-game losing skid Friday night with a convincing 8–1 win over Harwich. While the infamous fog settled into Veterans Field for the first time this season, delaying the contest for just about 30 minutes, Chatham starter Tanner Witt posted a one-hitter with five strikeouts in four innings. Two Oklahoma State products, Gabe Davis and Carson Benge, finished what Witt had started, combining for four strikeouts over the latter five innings to secure the win.

On top of the Anglers’ dominant pitching, Chatham’s offense blew by the Mariners, notching 15 hits in the process. Newcomers Deric Fabian, out of Florida, and Carter Trice, out of North Carolina State, combined for seven hits in 10 total at-bats.

Here are the pre-game notes for when Hyannis (8–8–1 West) comes to visit the A’s (5–11–1 East) for a Saturday night showdown. The Harbor Hawks are currently on a two-game losing streak.

Probable Starters

Jack Sokol (Pittsburgh): Sokol, someone who Chatham manager Tom Holliday described as a “pitcher pitcher,” throws a good combination of off-speed pitches and can pace his fastball up to the mid-to-low 90’s in velocity. In his sole appearance for Chatham this season, Sokol fanned nine batters in only four innings, allowing just two hits and one earned run in the process.

Ethan Bates (Louisiana Tech): Bates is going to transition from player to pitcher in just one day with a projected start against the Anglers Saturday night. On Friday, the lefty bat produced one hit in the Harbor Hawks’ 4–3 loss to Bourne, and on Saturday, the right-handed arm is expected to make his third appearance of the season. Bates has thrown six innings of action this season, manufacturing an ERA of 3.00 with eight strikeouts.

Chatham Players to Watch

Deric Fabian (Florida): Now known as Veterans Field for his pink-dipped baseball bat, Fabian had an impressive Chatham debut. The Florida product garnered three hits in five at-bats, one of which shattered his pink-lathered barrel, and didn’t make an error at his shortstop post.

Carter Trice (North Carolina State): Trice is the gift that keeps on giving for Holiday and third-base coach Marty Lees. The righty has become a much-needed energy boost to the Anglers’ lineup, accumulating five hits in eight at-bats so far this season. Trice also accounts for two RBIs and two walks already this summer.

Hyannis Players to Watch

Michael Sirota (Northeastern): The Harbor Hawks have recorded the least amount of hits in the Cape League this year at a mark of 117 total hits as a team. But if there is anyone Hyannis can rely on, it’s Sirota, who joined the squad in late June. Sirota’s .304 batting average leads the Harbor Hawks. The Husky has not registered an on-base percentage lower than .500 in a game yet.

Cameron Smith (Florida State): No one has gone up to the plate to bat on the Harbor Hawks’ roster more than Smith has. In 60 at-bats this summer, the Seminole has tacked on 16 hits and two home runs.

Number to Know: 2

In Chatham’s last three games played, two different pitcher-player hybrids have stepped in to pitch the final inning. First it was Lyle Miller-Green who took the mound at Falmouth Thursday, tossing a scoreless ninth inning. Then it was the Anglers’ top hitter, Carson Benge, who manned the bump in the ninth inning of the A’s 8–1 stomping of the Mariners. Benge also pitched a scoreless inning, fanning two batters along the way.

Last Time They Played

If it weren’t for a three-run seventh inning that Chatham’s offense spelled together, it looked like the Anglers were going to be shutout in their first game against the Harbor Hawks.

Hyannis starter Jay Driver shutout the A’s through the first five frames, leading to a 6–3 defeat of Chatham at McKeon Park. The loss came a day after the Anglers’ opened their season with a 10–10 tie against Brewster.