PGCBL Dugout Chatter, Week 7

Photo courtesy Amanda Morrison/Watertown Daily Times
Photo, left: Watertown's Erick Gaylord in action at the Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds. Gaylord is in pursuit of the PGCBL Triple Crown. He entered Monday's action first in the league in home runs (10) and RBI (41) and third in batting average (.358).

Albany Dutchmen
Overall: 17-26 (.395), Third PGCBL East…Week 7: 1-5 (.167)
Second-year Dutchmen hurler Justin Brantley (Siena) turned in perhaps the best pitching performance in franchise history on July 28. Brantley struck out a PGCBL season-high 13 and he pitched a seven-hitter over eight innings in a win at Newark…Albany’s win at Newark helped the team set a franchise single-season record for victories (17)…The Dutch remain in first place overall in the league in stolen bases (87); the next closest team stands 13 back with three days left in the regular season…Andrew Deeds (Morehead State) has climbed into the league’s top seven in batting average. Deeds is batting a team-high .336 with 42 hits and 30 runs in 38 games. He enters the final “week” with a 10-game hit streak…Local standouts Jevonte Osterhout (Saint Rose) and Billy Creighton (Schenectady County CC) joined the Dutchmen last week. Osterhout is related to former Houston Astro Glen Barker; Barker was a player for the Schenectady Mohawks when current Amsterdam GM Brian Spagnola was the head coach. Creighton was an NJCAA Division III All-American in the spring…Osterhout batted .533 with eight hits, six runs scored and three RBI in his first five games. Creighton smashed an RBI double in his first PGCBL at-bat on Saturday night against Amsterdam…Infielder Anthony Turgeon (CCSU) and Andrew Deeds are tied for the team lead in games played (38); no Dutchmen fielder has appeared in more than 38 contests…Offensively, Albany is averaging 5.3 runs per game; the Dutch have scored 41 times in the fourth inning…Will Remillard (Temple) is first on the team with 10 multi-hit games while Steve Anderson (Georgetown) boasts five multi-RBI efforts…Weather permitting, the Capital District club will finish its’ inaugural PGCBL campaign with 47 games; a home contest with Cooperstown was rained out and will not be made up.

Amsterdam Mohawks
Overall: 28-17 (.622), Second PGCBL East…Week 7: 4-3 (.571)
The hottest team in the PGCBL for most of the month of July finally cooled off with a 4-3 mark in seven tilts last week. The Tribe’s back-to-back losses to Watertown and Mohawk Valley on July 28-29 were its’ first since being swept in a doubleheader by Glens Falls on June 24…Despite a rocky week, the Mohawks clinched a playoff spot and will meet rival Glens Falls in the divisional playoffs beginning on Fri., Aug. 5 at a site to be determined…Amsterdam also returned to the Summer “Top 25” at number 22 in the nation…With just two more wins, Amsterdam will clinch its’ second 30-win campaign in the last three years. The Mohawks went 30-12 in 2009 under a 42-game schedule in the NYCBL…The Mohawks made several roster additions last week adding pitchers Ryan Harper (Saint Rose), Ethan Selby (Fulton-Montgomery CC) and Matt Gage (Broadalbin-Perth H.S.). Gage, a 2011 NYSSWA All-State selection, is bound for Siena College in the fall…Harper allowed two runs on two hits over four innings in his Tribe debut at Watertown on July 28; Selby followed with three shutout frames…Selby has not allowed a run in four innings and has struck out four…Matt Gage has yet to see game action…The Mohawks remain on top of the loop in team batting average (.288), home runs (33), team earned run average (3.43) and runs allowed (177)…Amsterdam pitchers are second in total strikeouts (388)…Luke Maile (Kentucky) is tied for second in the league in home runs (eight) despite playing only 24 games…Mark Leiter Jr. (NJIT) leads all PGCBL pitchers with 61 strikeouts in 48.0 innings. He is fifth among in starters in ERA (3.00)…Zach Shank (Marist) topped the Mohawks last week with a .536 batting average, 15 hits and seven runs scored. Kody Ortman (NW Shoals) batted .500 (slugged .813) and Brad Picha (Paris JC) clobbered two home runs…Shank has appeared in 43 games for Amsterdam and he leads the team with 55 hits, 33 runs and 18 multi-hit games; he has an 11-game hit streak…Andrew Green (ETSU) and Zach Shank are tied for first in games played with 43 apiece; Demarcus Henderson (Miss. State) and Jude Vidrine (Lamar) have each participated in 41 and Matt Mack (Radford) has taken the field in 40…Reliever Will Kendall (Auburn) did not allow an earned run in three appearances last week…The Mohawks are 8-6 in one-run games and 11-5 in games decided by five runs or more.

Cooperstown Hawkeyes
Overall: 22-19 (.537), Tied for first PGCBL West…Week 7: 0-5 (.000)
The Hawkeyes have held first place in the PGCBL West for nearly two weeks; the last time Cooperstown and Newark were tied for first was on July 17; the Otsegans led by the Pilots by .004 percentage points…Three of Cooperstown’s five games last week came with Glens Falls; a twin bill at home and a single game at East Field…The Otsegans were the among the hottest teams of the league on July 22; then, a combination of scheduled days off and rain outs kept the club off the field for a game until July 27…Weather permitting, the Hawkeyes should complete 46 games by the end of the regular season; the Hawkeyes had one home game cancelled due to rain against Watertown and a road tilt at Albany washed away…Cooperstown leads the PGCBL with five extra-inning contests; the Hawkeyes are 3-2 in those games…Doubleday Field saw its’ regular season schedule finish on Sunday; the Hawkeyes went 14-7 at home this season…Manager Eric Coleman’s team will finish with five games in three days on the road as part of a stretch of seven games in five days; Cooperstown has twin bills set for Aug. 2 in Watertown and Aug. 3 in Elmira…Catcher Jamie Jiron (Buffalo) was added to the Hawkeyes roster last week. Jiron, a graduate of Baltimore’s DeMatha Catholic, is a rising senior at UB. He played his first two collegiate seasons at Catonsville (Md.) Comm. College…With three days left in the season, Bryan Aanderud (Cypress) continues to lead the loop in batting average (.364) however his nearest competitor is just .003 points behind…Aanderud is first on the team in multi-hit games (11) while second-year Hawkeye Ben Miller (Shippensburg) has five multi-RBI performances…Should Cooperstown advance to the PGCBL playoffs, it would be their second summer league postseason appearance in two years; Cooperstown met Amsterdam in the NYCBL playoffs in 2010.

Elmira Pioneers
Overall: 21-23 (.477), Third PGCBL West…Week 7: 4-2 (.667)
The Southern Tier side has woken up from a most-of-July slumber and has ripped off four wins in its’ last five games to pull within two and a half games of first-place Cooperstown and Newark…Elmira scored at least nine runs in three of the four wins and then eeked out a low-scoring victory over Cooperstown (4-3)…Justin Lamborn (West Chester) gave Elmira a shootout win (9-8) over Albany with a two-run home run in the eighth inning at Bellizzi Field…The Pios are 15-8 at home and 6-15 on the road…Ryan Normoyle (Wash., Md.), a top of the line-up hitter earlier this year, has been moved to the three slot and he drove in a team-high nine RBI last week to go along with a .391 batting average for the week…Normoyle’s .361 overall average is second in the PGCBL with three days left in the regular season…In all six games last week, Elmira’s bullpen did not allow a run, earned or unearned – seven relievers combined to pitch 11 scoreless innings. Wes McBride (UNC Greensboro) snapped up two saves in two chances and Jay Ferri (URI) struck out five of the six men he faced…Cody Lillich (Niagara) topped the Pioneer starters with an eight-inning gem at Newark where he yielded a run on six hits; Mike Kazley (Cornell) also whirled a six-hit bid against the Pilots…The team from Dunn Field stands second in the league in batting average (.279) but it is first in runs scored (283), runs per game (6.4) and walks (170)…Ryan Normoyle has a league-high 60 hits and 19 multi-hit games; he is the only PGCBL batter with 60 or more hits…David Bishop (Miss. State) is tied for second in home runs (eight) and fourth in total bases (79)…The Pioneers are 6-6 in one-run games and 2-7 in games decided by two runs or less. But, Elmira is 10-5 in contests decided by five or more runs…Over 30,000 fans have jammed into Dunn Field for 23 home games; Elmira leads the league in average attendance (1,310).

Glens Falls Golden Eagles
Overall: 29-15 (.659), First PGCBL East…Week 7: 6-0 (1.000)
The Golden Eagles acted more like a phoenix this past week, rising from the ashes of a 1-4 stretch to hammer out six-straight wins and clinch a spot in the PGCBL playoffs…The Golden Eagles are 14-4 dating back to July 13; prior to that, the Eagles lost four of their previous five…The Eagles returned to the ranked portion of the Summer “Top 25” last week at number 33; 35 teams were ranked in an enhanced poll by PG Crosschecker…Josh Anderson (Yavapai) is the first Glens Falls batter to win the PGCBL Player of the Week award; pitchers Nick Gonzalez (South Florida), Neil Fryer (Siena) and Derek Mazzio (Saint Louis) each took home a Pitcher of the Week prize during the first few weeks of the season…Since Anderson’s return from injury, the Green and Gold is 7-5 though when Anderson produces offensively, the team is 6-1. The current PGCBL Player of the Week is on a seven-game hit streak…Relievers Pete Noordsy (Wofford), Jordan Keysor (Skidmore) and Antwan Brown (Santa Fe) combined for the best bullpen appearance by any team this season on Saturday at Mohawk Valley. The trio pitched a combined nine shutout innings (Glens Falls’ starter was charged with three runs on no hits in the top of the first and didn’t record an out) and struck out 14. Keysor alone whiffed seven in three and two-thirds innings…Keysor has 12 strikeouts and a 0.00 ERA in four appearances…Starter Kayvon Bahramzadeh (Kansas State) continues to string together impressive appearances. Last week, he went 2-0 with a 2.70 ERA. Bahrahzadeh spun a two-hit bid and struck out six in five innings against Elmira on July 26 and then held Amsterdam to two runs on seven hits and fanned six in five innings at Amsterdam on Sunday night. The K-State product is 3-0 with a 1.80 ERA…Glens Falls continues to lead the league in fielding (.966) and the team is third in overall ERA (4.21)…Kyle Ruchim (Northwestern) is first in doubles (16) second in total bases (85) and tied for second in runs scored (34)…Josh Anderson’s .350 batting average is fourth in the PGCBL…Glens Falls will meet Amsterdam in the PGCBL East playoffs at a site to be determined (depending on who wins the division title)…The Green and Gold is bidding for its’ fourth 30-win season.

Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs
Overall: 17-28 (.378), Fourth PGCBL East…Week 7: 5-2 (.714)
Outside of Glens Falls, Mohawk Valley has been the hottest team in the PGCBL over the last several weeks. The Dawgs are 7-2 in their last nine games with single losses coming to Elmira and Glens Falls on the road…Mohawk Valley earned its’ first win over rival Amsterdam on July 29 with a 10-4 thrashing of the Mohawks at Shuttleworth Park…The Dawgs closed out the week with an improbable twin bill sweep of Albany at home; Mohawk Valley came from behind with late-inning offensive surges to win each game…Cullen Wacker (Auburn) is three games away from competing in an entire 48-game PGCBL regular season; including the All-Star Game, Wacker has participated in 46 contests so far…Michael Gunn (Arkansas-2011) was the top offensive threat for the Dawgs last week with a .375 batting average, nine hits, four RBI and five runs scored. Bryan Bleakley (NJIT) knocked in eight runs and Nic Spence (Cincinnati) slugged two clouts…Despite scoring 49 runs in seven games, the Dawgs batted just .238 as a team…Reliever Mike Bradstreet (URI) carved out a 0.87 ERA over four appearances; he tossed a complete game on Sunday in the second game of MV’s doubleheader with Albany…The team from Little Falls has played just seven one-run games this season and is 3-4 in those contests…The Dawgs have barked up 58 runs in the sixth inning; the most of any frame this year and they have outscored the opposition 15-2 in the ninth…Relievers Michael Gunn and Alex Lester(Kentucky) are two of the top bullpen tossers in the PGBCL in terms of ERA; Gunn holds a 0.90 ERA and one save in eight appearances while Lester has a 1.65 ERA, a 2-1 record and 30 strikeouts in 17 appearances…Mike Bradstreet is tied for the league lead in appearances (20) with Amsterdam’s Abram Williams (Radford) and Derrick Brewer (Radford)…Cullen Wacker has a Mohawk Valley best 15 multi-hit games; Michael Gunn and Bryan Bleakley both have seven multi-RBI games…Bleakley has driven in 28 runs in 27 games since he was signed by the DiamondDawgs.

Newark Pilots
Overall: 24-21 (.533), Tied for first PGCBL West…Week 7: 2-4 (.333)
The Pilots shook off a four-game losing streak to end the week on a high note with back-to-back wins to draw even with Cooperstown for first place in the PGCBL West. Cooperstown holds the tiebreaker with Newark should the teams finish in a dead heat…In two wins last week, the Pilots held the opposition to four runs or less; in four losses; opponents scored five or more runs…Newark scored at least three runs in two victories…Michael Bolling (Lewis) and Luke Swenson (UCSB) carried the Pilots offense last week; Bolling hit .429 (9-for-21) with three stolen bases and Swenson batted .360 with nine hits, one RBI and three stolen bases…Reliever Mark Scott (San Joaquin Delta) converted two save opportunities and struck out four. Scott is now tied with Amsterdam’s Abram Williams (Radford) for the league lead in saves (10)…Justin D’Amato (St. John Fisher) did not receive a decision last week though he fanned 10 batters in just five innings of work at Amsterdam on July 27…Randy Villa (San Joaquin Delta) has not missed a game for the Pilots this season; he is the only player on the team to appear in all 45 games…Michael Bolling has surged into the team lead in batting average (.340); his 21 stolen bases on 22 attempts are first in the PGCBL…Newark batsmen have hit just 13 home runs this season; that is the fewest in the league by any team…Carson Beauchaine (Saginaw Valley State) has 60 strikeouts in 54.0 innings; he is second in the league in strikeouts and teammate Justin D’Amato is third with 52 in 42.2 frames…Luke Swenson has 18 multi-hit games; Ray Delvalle (Ky. Wesleyan) and Michael Bolling have 16 apiece…Randy Villa has a team-high eight multi-RBI games…Villa’s 366 chances and 340 putouts are first in the league; he is nearly 100 chances and putouts ahead of his nearest competitor.

Watertown Wizards
Overall: 17-26 (.395), Fourth, PGCBL West…Week 7: 2-3 (.400)
Watertown put together some of the best starting pitching in the entire PGCBL last week. The Wizards accrued a 1.19 team earned run average and all four pitchers that started had an ERA of 2.16 or less…Scott Whitehead’s (Canisius) complete game shutout of the Amsterdam Mohawks on July 28 was the first by a Watertown pitcher since June 14, 2009 when Kole Mickolio (Utah Valley State) spun a complete game, two-hit shutout against the Saratoga Phillies; both games were played at Watertown’s Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds…Tim Sylvester (St. John Fisher) set a Wizards’ season high with 12 strikeouts of Elmira batters on Sunday night; Sylvester threw a seven-hitter and yielded one run in a 157-pitch performance…Sylvester’s 12 single-game strikeouts fell well short of the franchise record of 17, set in the 2005 NYCBL playoffs by Mike Schellinger…Other starters Anthony Buonopane (Furman) and Rob Rogers (Keystone) pitched at least seven innings and were charged with two earned runs or less…Watertown, weather permitting, should finish the season with 47 games – a July 29 game at Cooperstown was rained out in the first inning and will not be made up. The Wizards have not played a complete regular season schedule dating back to 2006…Erick Gaylord (Campbell) continues his quest for the Triple Crown. Gaylord enters the final three days of the season with four games to go; he has a .358 batting average, 10 home runs and 41 RBI. Gaylord leads the league in home runs and RBI but trails in batting average by .006 behind Cooperstown’s Bryan Aanderud (Cypress)…The Purple and Gold continues to lead the league now with 121 extra-base hits; that’s buoyed by a league-high 16 triples and 28 home runs (second to Amsterdam)…In two seasons with the Wizards, Larry Balkwill (Siena) has clubbed eight home runs…Chris Gruarin (Canisius) is the only Wizard to start all 43 games; Erick Gaylord has appeared in 42; Gruarin and Gaylord are the only two that have played in 40 or more games…Through two starts, newcomer Zach Weaver (St. John Fisher) is 1-1 with a 1.50 ERA…Erick Gaylord is second in the league in stolen bases (19)…The Purple and Gold has punched out 53 runs in the fourth inning…Watertown is 2-11 in one-run games.

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