By Zach Kaplan
Penn State University
July 3, 2018
FALMOUTH– While he pitched 22 ⅔ innings a year ago, Seth Shuman (Georgia Southern) has had a quiet start to the 2018 season. That was until last night, when the rising junior was able to throw five shutout innings for Cotuit, giving up only three hits while striking out five.
While he settled for the no-decision following the 2-2 tie on Monday night, Shuman gave his team a chance to win by throwing strikes, which is all coach Mike Roberts can ask of his staff.
“He does a great job of throwing strikes, and that’s critical,” said Roberts after Monday’s game. “He gave us a really efficient five innings. Seth will do that on a pretty consistent basis because he’s a strike-thrower.”
Shuman was able to lower his ERA to 2.31 on the season, and made his longest start since July 30 of last year, when he went 5 ⅓ innings against Falmouth as well.
Seth wasn’t the only second-year Cotuit pitcher to throw a scoreless inning last night. Zane Collins (Wright State) went 1 ⅓ innings scoreless in the seventh and eighth innings, while Stephen Schoch (UMBC) did one better by going 2 ⅓ scoreless innings in the extra frames.
Robertson continues his clutch hitting ways, Smith makes debut
It’s starting to seem like an afterthought that good things happen when Will Robertson (Creighton) steps up to the plate. The Kettleers needed a clutch hit trailing 2-1 in the eighth inning, and there was Robertson, rounding the bases after a game-tying home run.
Robertson drilled a 1-2 pitch over the wall in right-center field for his second home run of the season and 10th RBI.
“Lefty pitcher, so I had two pitches in mind with the fastball and curveball. He flipped me a curveball that just hung, he made a mistake and I jumped on it.”
Robertson injured his wrist in the doubleheader against Chatham back on June 24, but x-rays proved negative. Surely enough, he was back in the lineup last Friday against the Commodores, and seems to have picked up right where he left off.
“The biggest part was hitting BP before the game, I think treating BP and cage work like the game itself, and trying to make it as realistic as possible was pretty helpful.”
Its like deja vu all over again
For Cotuit fans in attendance at Guv Fuller Field last night, it certainly seemed like some deja vu was to happen. Just like last Friday’s loss to the Commodores, Joey Walsh (BC) came on to get out of a jam in the eighth inning, and picked up the first two outs of the ninth inning.
The aforementioned Schoch came in on relief in an eerily similar circumstance to the one the Kettleers faced just a few nights ago. But this time around, it was Schoch forcing a fly out to strand the bases loaded with two outs for Falmouth, who looked ready to walk off again.
For Walsh, it was the second night in a row that pitching coach Jerry Weinstein would call his name out of the bullpen. Walsh seems to be the high-leverage guy that Weinstein likes out of the pen, as his knack for getting Cotuit out of jams continues to be his calling card.
Long nights for the Kettleers in recent games
For the Kettleers, Monday marked the third game to require extra innings in the last four, with the Y-D loss on Saturday the lone exception. Last Friday, the Kettleers lost in Falmouth on a walk-off single in the tenth inning, but got a walk-off win of their own on Sunday against Chatham.
Monday’s tie gives the Kettleers a 1-1-1 record this year in games that required extra innings. It also marked the first Cotuit tie since July 10 of last season, when the Kettleers tied Hyannis 9-9.
Cotuit will be back at home on Tuesday, as they take on the Wareham Gatemen. In their only other meeting so far this season, Cotuit took a 4-1 loss at Clem Spillane Field in Wareham. First pitch is set for 5:00 p.m. at Lowell Park.