After cool start, Titans heating up.
TORRINGTON: Early in their 2014 campaign, pitchers in the Futures Collegiate Baseball League, like most wooden bat summer league programs, were well ahead of the batters once games began on June 4.
Not uncommon as college players used to hearing the sweet ‘ting’ of their aluminum bats adjust to the honest feel of their counterparts made from good old fashioned wood.
The Torrington Titans were no different in that sense and had gotten off to a rather pedestrian 2-6 record before a three-game home winning streak highlighted by a blend of good pitching, key hitting and a determination their manager liked seeing.
“We didn’t quit,” first year manager Dan McNamara said. “It’s something I have seen from this group of guys since day one. They don’t stop playing.”
Last Saturday at home against Pittsfield was one of those nights the team may look back on as the season wears on and realize that was the point that they started to play comeback baseball.
Down 4-0 going into the bottom of the second, Torrington responded with three runs but would go down 7-4 after five.
A six-run top of the sixth proved to the team what their manager felt, they did not give up.
A double-header sweep on Sunday versus North Shore at Fuessenich Park brought the Titans record to 6-7, a much better felling than falling too far under .500.
Starting play tonight in Brockton, Torrington holds a 6-7 record and will complete two games tonight, one a game suspended after 17 innings in the second game of the season on June 5 with the score tied 3-3, the other a regularly scheduled game.
Under league rules, the suspended game had to be completed before the next time the two teams met, regardless of where that game was being played.
So tonight, the Titans will be the home team for game one and hopefully get that game over at some point before taking on the Rox, who own the league’s best record at 10-1.
Mike Odenwaelder has taken up where he left off last season with the Titans and this spring at Amherst College with a .380 batting average that comes with a home run and a 13 runs batted in (second in the FCBL).
Throw in eight stolen bases in nine tries and you can tell the former Wamogo star in feeling just fine back in Torrington.
Landon Calhoun, who joined the team after the first week of the season, has been on fire since his arrival, batting .348 with eight RBI’s in just seven games. Calhoun has an RBI in five of his seven outings, including four last night in a 12-2 rout of North Shore in Lynn, Ma.
Third baseman Jack St Clair has found a home on the bases this season, the Holy Cross junior is batting a team leading .383 with an on-base plus slugging average (OPS) is an astounding .985.
George Lund has been the best the Titans have thrown at opponents to date with a 2-0 record, a .060 ERA and 19 strikeouts in 15 innings.
Mike Gibbons, in his second stint in Torrington, had a strong outing his last time out when he shut down North Shore in the first game of the twin bill sweep by a 2-1 score, throwing six innings of six hit, one run ball.
Samuel Warren leads the team with a pair of saves.
Following the completion of tonight’s games, the Titans return home on Friday night to take on the Nashua Silver Knights, who at the start of play Thursday are just percentage points behind Torrington.