By John S. Condakes
JULY 5, 2008
WAREHAM — The Cotuit Kettleers could not muster up much offense until the ninth inning last night at Clem Spillane Field as Texas Longhorn Brandon Workman spun a near-gem allowing just two hits over nine innings in a near no-hitter that saw the host Wareham Gatemen victorious, 4-0.
Auburn’s Mike Bianucci broke up Workman’s no-hit bid in the ninth with one out and Evan Crawford (Indiana) followed with a basehit, but Workman settled down to get the last two outs. All totalled, Workman had 13 strikeouts.
“I had been seeing it well all night, I was sitting on his breaking ball when the count went 0-2 he threw it right across the plate,” said Bianucci of his hit that broke Workman’s no-hit bid. Bianucci also stole two bases on the night and said that his leg is back in shape after getting hit with a pitch last week.
Paul Applebee (UC-Riverside) took the mound looking for his first win of the season but was denied by the masterful performance put on by Workman. The first two innings were rough for Applebee as he allowed four runs (three earned) after almost every ball seemed to bounce in favor of the Gatemen. After a leadoff single and a sacrifice bunt, Wareham had a scoring opportunity with one out and runner on second in the first. Wareham right fielder Brett Eibner (Arkansas) reached on an infield single to shortstop Michael Gilmartin (Wofford) in “no man’s land” between second and third to put runners on first and third with one out. Applebee threw a ball in the dirt on a pickoff attempt to score a run and move Eibner into scoring position at second base. Designated hitter Blake Dean (LSU) made him pay with single up the middle that bounced off of the second base bag to allow Eibner to come across with the second Wareham run to make the score 2-0 after one.
Applebee didn’t fair any better in the second when he allowed back-to-back singles in the second and a sacrifice bunt moved them over to put runners on second and third with one out. Gatemen second baseman Ryan Pineda (Cal State Northridge) laced a 2 RBI single to double the Wareham lead and that would cap the scoring on the night. Applebee really settled down after the second inning and turned the game into a pitchers’ duel as he scattered three hits over the final six innings and went the distance (eight innings) in the loss. He finished the night giving up ten hits with his four runs, one walk and six strikeouts.
The Kettleers return to the confines of Lowell Park on Sunday as they face off against the first place and crosstown rival Hyannis Mets at 5 p.m. and will try to reclaim a share of first place in the East Division as they try to improve their 10-8 record.