Robert Pehl hit a pair of two-run home runs, but the Red Sox lost 8-6 to Wareham in Game 3 Friday night.
By: Andrew Constant / @andrew_constant
Playoff and Championship Series MVP Kyle Schwarber hit two home runs in the final two innings, including the game-winning, two-run blast with one out in the top of the tenth, helping the Wareham Gatemen complete a three-run comeback and stun the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox 8-6 in Game 3 of the Cape Cod Baseball League?s Championship Series.
Y-D led 5-2 going to the top of the ninth, but Schwarber led off the frame with a solo homer to right off Preston Hatcher and Mott Hyde slammed a two-run dinger to left-center off Joey DeNato three batters later to tie the contest at 5-5.
After Colby Suggs worked around a single in the bottom half of the ninth, Schwarber struck again, creaming a two-run bomb over the fence in straightaway center, giving the Gatemen their first and only lead of the ballgame. Bryan Verbitsky had gotten the first two outs of the inning via strikeout, but he walked Ryan Sullivan and Schwarber made him pay for it.
On the very next pitch, Tyler Horan added a home run of his own, a deep fly into the trees beyond the right field fence, flipping his bat towards the first base dugout after making contact.
Y-D got one of the runs back in the bottom half, when Carlos Asuaje connected on his third round-tripper of the summer, a line drive to center, but Zak Blair flew out to center and the Gatemen celebrated the team?s seventh league title and first since 2002.
The late-game fireworks spoiled a great start from Alex Gonzalez, who pitched six great innings for the Red Sox on three days rest. The right-hander from Oral Roberts allowed just two runs on five hits and threw 61 of his 93 pitches for strikes. Gonzalez struck out 11 after winning Game 1 of the East Division Championship Series against the Orleans Firebirds on Monday night.
In the seventh, Y-D manager Scott Pickler called on Preston Hatcher, who had thrown just one inning in the playoffs and three in the entire month of August. Hatcher tossed two perfect innings out of the Red Sox bullpen, but allowed the home run to Schwarber in the top of the ninth, cutting the Y-D lead to 5-3. For the game, Hatcher allowed just that one hit, while striking out two.
Joey DeNato relieved Hatcher in the ninth, and after dominating hitters for the better part of the summer, faltered for the second time in the series. DeNato got the first batter he faced, but allowed a single before Hyde?s home run.
The Red Sox broke a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the seventh and looked to have control of the game. Justin Shafer led off with a double to left-center and looked like he would be stranded there after Danny Diekroger popped up a bunt and Sean Dwyer flew out to center, but Wayne Taylor came to the rescue, looping a broken-bat single into shallow left field. Wareham?s shortstop Ethan Gross laid out as much as he could, but the ball landed out of his reach, allowing Shafer to motor home with the go-ahead run.
Y-D got on the board first in the fourth, when Robert Pehl crushed his ninth home run of the summer over the left-center field fence. The two-run blast was made possible when Schwarber dropped a routine pop up off the bat of Carlos Asuaje one batter earlier. Fred Shepard, possibly distracted by the error behind him, left a first-pitch fastball over the middle of the plate, and Pehl creamed it into the woods beyond the wall in left-center.
Pehl finished with two two-run home runs in the game, giving him 10 for the summer. The designated hitter from Washington finished the season with a team-high 45 RBI.
Wareham got those runs back in the top of the fifth, finally breaking through against Gonzalez. Hyde led off with a double into the right-center field gap and trotted around the bases when Ty Ross hammered a two-run homer over the fence in right-center. Ross, who?s solo home run in the top of the ninth won Game 1, hit just one round tripper this season for the Gatemen after hitting three at LSU this spring.
Verbitsky ended up with the loss and Suggs earned the victory, even after allowing four hits and three runs to the Red Sox.?