By: Carson Field
Some matchups just don’t play out well. No matter how skilled a player can be, some teams just have their numbers. That’s the case with Joshua Culliver and Wareham.
In his third appearance against the Gateman, Culliver once again struggled. Entering the game with a 3-2 lead, that advantage quickly dissolved.
He surrendered four earned runs in the fourth inning, raising his season ERA to 8.26.
But these troubles against Wareham were nothing new for Culliver. In his first two outings against the Gateman, he gave up eight combined runs in 3.2 innings of work.
Culliver, however, wasn’t the only hurler to struggle in Saturday’s 7-5 defeat. JP Woodward allowed two earned runs in the first inning, and Blake Burzell allowed an unearned run later in the fourth inning.
“Culliver wasn’t the only one,” manager Harvey Shapiro said. “The first three pitchers didn’t do a very good job.”
Offensively, scoring was sparse for the Braves in the loss. After scoring three runs in the first three frames, Bourne’s offense became stagnant.
The Braves tallied runs in the sixth and eighth runs, but, at that point, it was too late. The deficit proved too wide, and Wareham cruised to the victory.
Despite scoring runs in the late innings in back-to-back games, Shapiro isn’t sure if his team has progressed at all at the plate.
“I don’t know if there’s improvement,” Shapiro said. “We’ve got to be more consistent. They might improve for one or two innings, but they’ve got to be more consistent in more at-bats.”
With the loss Bourne now sits 11 points behind Wareham, Falmouth and Cotuit — which all share first place in the West Division. The magic number for the Braves now sits at 12 points.