By Matt Schneidman
June 28, 2014
Head coach Mike Roberts said Dalton Dulin (Ole Miss) can be a “spark” for his team.
Dulin is the shortest player on Cotuit’s roster at 5 feet, 9 inches, but he packs a punch to his game.
Even though he arrived only three days ago, Dulin has already started two games at second base. In Friday’s win at Hyannis, he showed why he should have no problem fitting into the Mike Roberts’ mold and will look to do the same when Cotuit (7-8) hosts Harwich (11-4) at Lowell Park on Saturday at 5 p.m.
“I think it’s perfect for my style of play,” Dulin said of playing for Roberts. “Just once I get my feet under me and I get comfortable here, I’ll be taking off.”
After getting off to a rocky 0-for-3 start at the plate in an 8-0 loss to Brewster on Wednesday, the switch-hitting Dulin placed down a RBI sac bunt in his first at-bat against the Harbor Hawks.
Roberts has gone into excessive detail regarding what specifically he considers a good bunt, and has even described the lack of bunting as “the problem with America.”
But on Friday, the Ole Miss rising sophomore was one of two players, along with Jeremy Taylor (East Tennessee State) to drive in a run on a bunt in the second inning.
“It’s the first game that we’ve gotten some safety squeezes down,” Roberts said with a chuckle after the game.
In addition to the RBI, Dulin also drew a walk, scored a run and recorded a ninth-inning infield single.
It’s the type of small-ball style that Roberts preaches and almost always finds a spot in the lineup for.
“Tonight, I think I drew a walk, couple times got on base and drew a safety squeeze there,” Dulin said on Friday. “So just a little something to get the offense going and I think it worked.”
In the field though, Dulin has a little adjusting to do, as a couple miscues on Wednesday were followed by what Roberts called a sign of inexperience on Friday.
Hyannis put runners on the corners after a hit-and-run single in the first, and Dulin was caught breaking toward second to cover for the steal while the ball was hit right where he was originally positioned.
“The reason the bases got loaded, we had an infielder move when he wasn’t supposed to move,” Roberts said. “Dalton was supposed to be sitting right there when the ball went through, again, inexperience.”
But Dulin noted he’s still getting his feet under him, and with more reps both at the plate and in the field, he’ll be the perfect piece to Roberts’ puzzle.
Already, he said he feels like part of a family with the team and is thrilled to be on the Cape after looking forward to this week since midway through his freshman season in Mississippi.
“With me just getting here three days ago and it was a long season,” Dulin said. “I was just ready to get back in the lineup and just play every day.”