By Matt Feldman
June 28, 2016
The Cotuit Kettleers (2-14) lost to the Bourne Braves (10-5-1) Tuesday night, 5-4, at Lowell Park. Here are three notes of interest following the one-run thriller in Cotuit.
Cotuit adds catcher Jason Delay
Last night, the Kettleers transferred catcher Hagen Owenby (East Tennessee State) to the Chatham Anglers. With four catchers that have seen time in the starting lineup— Owenby, Tim Susnara (Oregon), Albee Weiss (Cal State Northridge) and Cory Voss (Mississippi State)— Cotuit head coach Mike Roberts has struggled with consistency among his catchers.
After moving Owenby to the Anglers, Roberts activated Jason Delay (Vanderbilt), in an effort to alleviate issues of inconsistency. Delay saw his first action of the season Tuesday against the Braves, and was drafted by the San Francisco Giants in the 11th round out of Vanderbilt in this year’s draft.
“He’s a quality catcher, that’s the reason he’s an 11th round draft choice,” Roberts said. “He’s a quality player.”
Regarding Delay’s status for the rest of the summer, Roberts said he hasn’t asked Delay what his plans are, and is not going to ask. All Roberts knows is that Delay is under control of the Giants at this time.
Delay, who would be entering his senior season next year if he elects to return to Vanderbilt, is in contract negotiations with the Giants currently. Delay has until July 15 to sign. If he signs, he will head to rookie ball; if he doesn’t sign, he will likely stay with Cotuit for the remainder of the summer.
Justin Hooper makes strong relief appearance
After David Gerics (Pomona-Pitzer) threw just one-third of an inning as the starter Tuesday night and Josh Roberson (UNC-Wilmington) relieved him for three and two-thirds innings, Roberts called on lefty Justin Hooper (UCLA) as the middle-inning reliever in the fourth inning.
Hooper settled in for his strongest performance of the year Tuesday, allowing no runs on just two hits and two walks in three and two-thirds innings. He also struck out one.
“Justin really made a lot of progress, he did a great job,” Roberts said. “He changed speeds, threw strikes, he’s learned direction. Who wouldn’t be pleased?”
Hooper’s downfall thus far has been his command, but Tuesday night he limited poor pitches.
Hooper totaled 13 walks in eight innings this season at UCLA, allowing 18 runs for an ERA of 18.00. Tuesday night, Hooper showed that by limiting walks with control on his pitches, he can be a dominant option for the Kettleers’ pitching staff this summer.
Cotuit fails to win 6th one-run game
The Kettleers have found themselves in six one-run games so far this season, and lost all six.
June 17 (3-2 loss at Y-D), June 16 (6-5 loss to Orleans), June 19 (5-4 loss to Hyannis), June 24 (2-1 loss at Hyannis), June 26 (3-2 loss at Falmouth) and June 28 (5-4 loss to Bourne).
On Tuesday, Bourne scored all of its runs in the first inning, but Cotuit couldn’t grapple back in the ensuing nine innings, able to muster just four runs to Bourne’s five.
“(Losing one-run games) is my fault,” Roberts said. “You’ve got to put nine people on the field who play the game really proficiently at the same time; and I have struggled doing that.”