By Dylan Wolter
June 17th, 2015
COTUIT- Jonathan King (Georgia Tech) and Jon Woodcock (Virginia Tech) had another effective outing, limiting damage, and going the distance in a 4-3 victory over the Brewster Whitecaps. The formula remained the same as it was against the Bourne Braves six days ago with King starting out the game and Woodcock finishing it.
With an abundance of games in the Kettleers schedule, including two double headers on back to back Sunday’s, saving arms is important. King and Woodcock, both lefties, are a formidable duo that pitch economically and make the coach’s job much easier by not allowing them to go to the bullpen too often.
Jonathan King may not have had his best stuff on Tuesday evening, but he did an admirable job of pitching well with runners on base. In the second inning, King was his own worst enemy. With a runner on first, King botched an easy bunt by throwing it over Brody Weiss’s (Riverside JC) head, allowing the runner to move to third. The runner would then come around to score on a wild pitch.
King also gave up a run in the third inning after a couple of hits from Nick Senzel (Tennessee) and Robbie Tenerowicz (California). Other than those two runs, King was able to get out of jams and seemed to pitch his best when the pressure was on. King went five strong innings in which he allowed five hits, three walks, and four strikeouts.
“I elevated some pitches throughout the game,” admitted King in his second start this year, “I wasn’t extremely sharp, but once I realized I wasn’t as sharp as I needed to be I just tried to battle and keep us in the game.”
Jon Woodcock was able to finish what King started. The Whitecaps had no answer for Woodcock’s off speed pitches; he was constantly able to keep hitters off balance and provided easy outs for his defense. A leadoff double in the eighth from Senzel was the only runner Woodcock let in scoring position. Senzel would come around to score on a shallow fly ball single from Will Smith (Louisville.)
Jon Woodcock provided an easy 1,2,3 ninth inning getting a ground out, strikeout on a curve in the dirt, and a fly out to Brett Stephens who made a terrific diving catch in right field, to close out the game. Woodcock pitched four innings in total, giving up one run, allowing two hits (both in eigth inning), no walks and three strikeouts. He now owns a dazzling 1.04 ERA on the season.
Woodcock, who received the win, was appreciative of King’s effort and feels the two are strong when pitching together. “I think me and King have a good little duo going,” mentioned Woodcock with a smirk.
Stolen Bases Galore– A big reason the Kettleers were able to snap their four game losing streak and improve their record to 4-5 was their ability to swipe bags. Cotuit stole five bases in total, one from Brett Stephens (UCLA) and two each for Stephen Alemais (Tulane) and Spencer Gaa (Bradley).
It was a good sign for the Kettleers, not having the opportunity to run that often in the last few games. Spencer Gaa was particularly impressive on the basepaths, using his instincts and getting great jumps to steal bases instead of relying on speed. It was nice to see Alemais running well too; he’s been battling hamstring issues for a few weeks but he continues to look healthier as the season moves along.
Paez Injured– A scary play happened during the very first at bat for the Kettleers. Michael Paez was hit in the back with a fastball, near the shoulder blade, and was grimacing in pain as he jogged down to first base. After his at bat in the bottom in the fourth inning, Paez came out of the ball game.
“We just felt it like it was only going to get tighter and that we should get him out,” said acting manager Brian Scott. Sounds like a precautionary measure for now as Scott also acknowledged the day off tomorrow for some time to rest. A positive sign of Paez’s injury came when a teammate asked Paez how he was feeling, he responded, “nothing right now.” Hope it’s nothing too serious and that he’ll be patrolling second base come Friday.