CHATHAM – Following Tuesday’s 8-1 loss to Brewster, Manager Don Sneddon decided to change up his lineup for Wednesday’s game. Isaac Collins moved into the leadoff spot and Jeremy Ydens, who had hit leadoff in every game he has played this season for Wareham, moved down to the cleanup spot.
The result? Wareham’s new look lineup pounded out 12 hits and dominated in a 9-2 win over the Chatham Anglers. Collins finished his day 3-5 with two RBIs, two runs, a stolen base and a walk. Ydens filled up the stat sheet as well going 3-5 with three RBIs, a run, and a stolen base.
“We might see that again tomorrow,” Sneddon said as it pertains to this new lineup. “You ride the horse as long as you can, so we will ride Collins as long as we can.”
“He’s not a typical first guy since he does not walk a lot but he’s swinging the stick, so we will try and take advantage and get him on and let Ydens drive him in.”
The impact of the lineup change was felt right away in the first inning when Isaac Collins, the everyday right fielder, began the night with a single. He then stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error.
With two outs and two on, the new Gatemen cleanup hitter, Ydens, had a chance to prove himself in a run producing spot. Ydens had already entered the night one of the Gatemen premier hitters with runners in scoring position as he was hitting .350 with RISP and 13 RBI.
Staying true to form, Ydens kept his hot bat going when he hit one to the left center field gap which plated two runs as he pulled into second with a double.
“Isaac, Sahid, and Austin did a great job of getting on base. Obviously, there are going to be more RBI situations compared to the leadoff spot. I think you just have to know what they are trying to do to you when RBI situations are up,” Ydens said after the win.
In the bottom of the first, the Anglers got a run back when Michael Busch delivered an RBI single with two outs. Gatemen starter Ken Waldichuk had a rough first as he put four men on base, but limited the damage allowing just one run.
Over the next two innings, Waldichuk settled down and looked more like the pitcher Gatemen fans saw his first two outings of the season when he began his Cape League tenure by allowing just one run in nine innings. Waldichuk struck out two batters of the next two frames and retired the side in order in both innings.
After his final strikeout in the third, Waldichuk’s night had come to a close. In total, he went three innings allowing just one run on one hit and two walks.
In the top of the second with two down, the Gatemen put together a rally to scratch across another run and extend their lead to 3-1. Jakob Goldfarb hit a double down the left field line and to put a runner in scoring position for Collins. Collins promptly drove him in with his second single of the game.
After a scoreless third for both sides, Wareham got back in the run column in the fourth, fifth, and sixth innings.
With two on and two down in the fourth, Collins came to bat and once again he delivered. Collins had himself his second RBI single with two outs. Wareham now led 4-1.
The following inning, a pair of UCLA Bruins got something brewing. Ydens got on base via an infield single with one away. He advanced to second on the same play on a throwing error.
Following a Pavin Parks strikeout, Ydens made an aggressive base running move and stole third base with two away. This immediately payed off as Ryan Kreidler hit a seeing eye single to left to bring home a run, a hit that would not have brought Ydens home had he been on second base.
The Gatemen added four more to their total to extend the lead to 9-1 in the top of the sixth and essentially seal the outcome of the game.
Aside from the excellent offense Wareham, their pitching was equally as dominant. Lael Lockhart Jr. made his third relief appearance of the season and dazzled over four innings of work, just allowing one run.
Lael Lockhart Jr. recorded his first win of the summer (via Caroline O'Connor).
Last night’s appearance for Lockhart Jr. was the first time he had pitched an inning or more this summer. In his prior two outings, he had given up four runs in one inning of work.
“I really just focused on pitching and getting back to what I was doing at school. Taking it one pitch at a time and just going from there and letting the chips fall where they do,” Lockhart Jr. said.
As a two-way player, Lockhart Jr. had played in the field the same day when he made his first two pitching appearances of the summer. Last night, he was not in the starting nine and went out to the bullpen to begin the game.
“It’s the mindset, you can get into it earlier and prep a little bit earlier. It just helps you out in the long run,” Lockhart Jr. said. “You are in a better state of mind going out there rather than just flipping the switch really quick from the field trying to be a pitcher then flipping back and getting ready for ABs.”
After Lockhart Jr.’s stellar relief appearance, Tyler Keysor and Pavin Parks finished the game on the mound for Wareham throwing the last three innings of the game surrendering no runs while striking out six hitters.
With the win, the Gatemen have completed the season sweep of Chatham. Wareham won all four games and outscored the Anglers by a 34-12 margin.
Final: Gatemen 9, Anglers 2
Next up: The Gatemen (16-10) finish up their three game road trip today as they play the Cotuit Kettleers (12-12-1) for the first of a home-and-home. First pitch at 5:00 p.m. from Lowell Park in Cotuit.