By: Carson Field
After six stagnant innings at the plate, it appeared Bourne was due for an offensive breakthrough. Trailing 2-0 to Yarmouth-Dennis, Bourne finally got a baserunner when Alec Burleson reached on an error.
With AJ Curtis, Nick Brueser and Paul Gozzo due up, the Braves seemed destined to finally cross the plate.
That threat, however, didn’t cause any damage. Instead, that trio struck out twice and grounded out to end the seventh. The Braves didn’t reach base again after that deflating turn of events.
For the third time of 2019 season, Bourne didn’t tally a run. This time, the final score was 2-0.
Throughout the game, the Braves posted just two base hits, the lowest number of the season. Both of those knocks came from third baseman Zavier Warren. Just a day after striking out 15 times in game one of Sunday’s doubleheader, the Braves struck out 11 times on Monday.
While it would be easy to point fingers and blame the batters for such a dormant night, manager Harvey Shapiro credited the Red Sox’ pitching staff for its dominance on Monday.
“Their pitching was good,” Shapiro said. “We hit some balls hard; they just did a good job of staying ahead in counts.”
Yarmouth-Dennis’ duo of Trenton Denholm and John Beller never showed any signs of distress and cruised to their shutout. Denholm and Beller allowed one hit apiece and didn’t walk anybody.
This control on the mound made it virtually impossible for the Braves to have a chance.
“They mixed really well and mixed the fastball and hit their spots,” Warren said. “Didn’t walk anybody, so they really worked the zone.”
To make matters even more frustrating, Bourne’s pitching staff had a sound night of its own — but the absence of life at the plate made it meaningless. The combination of Mac Lardner, Colby Dunlop and Joshua Culliver gave up just five hits and one earned run. The other run came from an error by catcher Paul Gozzo, who dropped the ball on a tagout situation at the plate.
“We wasted good pitching tonight,” Shapiro said.
Following tonight’s offensive lull, Bourne once again possesses the league’s worst batting average at .208. The Braves are also last in runs and hits with 27 and 63, respectively.
Although the Braves have scored just six runs in the last three games, Warren expects the Braves to overcome the recent offensive struggles.
“I think, as people get more comfortable and get more people in games, the hitting will improve,” Warren said.
Additionally, several players from this year’s NCAA Tournament are still awaiting their debuts with the Braves. This added depth will almost certainly increase the production at the plate, but it could take a while.
“We got seven or eight guys coming in, so we’re going to have a different team,” Shapiro said. “They’re going to have adjustments that the guys right now have had. It’s not like a college season where you have the same guys for the whole season.”
After 10 games, the Braves are 4-6 on the season with eight points. Their next matchup is a road test against Hyannis, which has just one win on the season.