By: Jacob Janower
Sunday night’s contest demonstrated a deviation from the norm for the Bourne Braves.
On so many occasions, the Braves bullpen has either held their lead or kept them in games and allowed them to come back. In a 4-1 loss to the Hyannis Harbor Hawks however, the bullpen imploded in the sixth inning, turning what was once a close game into
A three-run inning by the Harbor Hawks (15-22-3) off of Jack Nelson (Boston College), who was making his debut with the Braves, made the difference in the game and wasted another strong start by Eli Kraus (Kent State).
The Braves (20-20) had been dominating the season series, but have now come out on the losing end of the final two games between the teams. The big reason for that has been the lack of offensive production, as the Braves have scored only two runs in two days against a pitching staff that has the highest Earned Run Average in the Cape Cod Baseball League.
Kraus- who has been the model of efficiency as a starting pitcher- allowed only one unearned run in five innings. Since returning from an injury, he has posted a 2.45 ERA in three starts.
Bourne got on the board first, as Anthony Prato (Connecticut) made an immediate impact at the plate by hitting a single in his first at-bat as a Brave in the third inning. He then proceeded to steal second base and came around to score on a single by Andrew Fregia (Sam Houston State).
Prato added a walk and another single and could become valuable into the playoffs if he continues to reach base frequently.
The offense was silenced otherwise, as Tyler Vaughn (Belmont) allowed just the one earned run over six innings. Harbor Hawks starting pitchers have struck 13 hitters in 11 innings over the past two games.
With two runners in scoring position in the seventh inning, Richie Palacios (Towson) drove in a run with a groundout to cut the deficit to two runs, but another groundout ended the Braves best scoring opportunity.
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The wait to clinch a playoff berth continues for the Braves, as they still remain just a win or a Harbor Hawks loss away from a postseason spot.
A win by Falmouth over Cotuit keeps the Braves in second place but they are now three points off of the division lead.
Stat That Mattered
Despite seven hits, the Braves did not have an extra base hit. They entered the game seventh in the CCBL in both home runs and doubles.
Brave of the Game
Ryan Simpler (East Tennessee State) had a rough start to his outing, allowing two inherited runners to score on a triple by Tyler Frank (Florida Atlantic), but retired eight of the final nine hitters he faced to allow a tired bullpen to get some more rest.
Coming Up: Tomorrow, the Braves will head on the road to make up a rainout from July 13 against the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox.
You can contact the author via email (email@example.com) or follow him on Twitter (@JanowerJacob).
Pre-game, in-game, and post-game highlights: