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Game 14 Preview: Chatham vs. Harwich

by Cooper Andrews
Sunday, June 30, 2024

Game 14 Preview: Chatham vs. Harwich
Saturday evening commenced with encouragement for Chatham. That momentum didn’t last long, however.

The Anglers’ offense was humming early against Bourne. They generated six hits and three runs through the game’s first two innings, including a two-run second frame in which they laced five singles. Yet, the Braves tattooed Chatham starter Evan Chrest (Florida State) for a three-run third inning — putting the A’s behind 5-3.

Chatham couldn’t claw its way back into contention despite a 3-for-4 performance from Austin Overn (USC) and 10 total team hits. It went the rest of the game scoreless, falling to Bourne 10-3 for its third consecutive defeat.

Next for the Anglers is a matchup versus Harwich. The Mariners enter the contest fresh off a 5-1 home win over Orleans, and currently sit at second place in the East Division.

Here’s what to know before Chatham (5-8, East) battles Harwich (8-5, East) at Veterans Field in the two teams’ second meeting of 2024:


Probable Starters

Karson Ligon (Mississippi State) is set for his first start of the summer. The righty is one of two Chatham hurlers to reach the 100-mph mark. Ligon hit triple digits against Harwich on June 24 during a scoreless seventh inning. So far with the Anglers, Ligon has yet to concede an earned run across three innings. He’s registered five strikeouts and hasn’t walked anybody.

With Mississippi State this season, Ligon started two games. His longest outing came when he pitched 3.1 scoreless innings on March 16 against LSU. Ligon pitched 23.2 innings, accumulating a 4.56 ERA while striking out 21 batters.

The Mariners will trot out right-hander Blake Morningstar against the Anglers. Morningstar, a rising sophomore at Wake Forest, made 26 appearances this past season with the Demon Deacons. He posted a 7.62 ERA, though he struck out 33 batters. Morningstar’s made two appearances and one start with Harwich thus far, recording a 7.50 ERA across six innings.

Chatham Players To Watch

High-slugging outfielder John Bay (Austin Peay) stands out among Chatham’s top hitters thus far. He’s exhibited plenty of power, tallying a .576 slugging percentage and a .976 OPS with a team-best three home runs. His seven RBIs also rank third on the A’s. On any given day, Bay will be one of the prime areas of focus for opposing pitchers as the plug of Chatham’s offense.

Elsewhere, Overn is a clear star within the Cape Cod Baseball League so far. He’s registered a team-high 17 hits — which rank first in the entire league — and blasted two homers with a 1.017 OPS. He embarked on a 3-for-5 day last time out versus Harwich, driving in one of the Anglers’ two runs and plating the other one himself off a wild pitch.

Harwich Players To Watch

Not much has changed from Chatham’s last game versus Harwich. Michael Anderson remains one of the best hitters in the CCBL. The Anglers avoided Anderson in the previous meeting, and will certainly be Ligon’s toughest out throughout the evening Sunday. Anderson bats .390, has driven in 13 runs and blasted four home runs. His 1.235 OPS is the best mark in the Cape.

Amid Anderson’s absence, Ryan Weingartner carried the Mariners’ offense en route to a victory over the Anglers. The Saint Joseph’s product racked up five RBIs on a 2-for-4 night at the dish, including a two-run home run in the fifth frame to put Harwich up by four. Weingarter’s flashed consistency this season, totaling a .296 batting average and 1.028 OPS.

Number To Know: .215

Chatham’s mainstay first baseman, Luke Cantwell (Pittsburgh), is putting together an intriguing slash line nearly a third of the way through the A’s season. Cantwell is only batting .194, yet his OBP stands at a very reliable .409 — a .215 difference between the two stats.

He’s also only slugged .194 to put his OPS at .603. But it’s undeniable that his knack for finding the basepaths makes him a key cog in Chatham’s lineup. If Cantwell can connect for harder contact in addition to his elite eye, the sky’s the limit for the ACC product this summer.

Last Time They Played

The A’s dropped their fifth game of the season to the Mariners on June 24, falling 4-2 on the road. Chatham out-hit Harwich 9-7, though the Mariners took a 4-0 lead after five innings — capped off by a Weingartner two-run homer — and kept the Anglers’ offense at bay.

Chatham generated bunches of hard contact against Harwich but starter Ryan DeSanto held its hitters quiet and frequently quelled run-scoring opportunities. Jacob Weaver (Austin Peay) posted a solid 4.1-inning start in spite of a lack of insurance runs to back him up.