Recap: Pompey's powerful debut, Roberts' start lead Gatemen to resounding win

By Wareham Gatemen | Jun 23, 2017

In a debut for the ages, Tristan Pompey left all in attendance at Spillane Field in awe.

 

On Friday night, appearing in his first game as a member of the Gatemen, Pompey blasted a pair of three run home runs en route to a six RBI night as Wareham defeated Orleans, 11-3, on an overcast evening at Spillane Field.

 

Pompey tallied four hits in all as he compiled two singles in his first two plate appearances before depositing no doubters over the fence in consecutive at bats.

 

Gatemen coach Don Sneddon said even for him it was hard not to just sit there and enjoy the power display from Pompey.

 

“I was glad that I was able to witness that,” said Sneddon. “That was just special. To have six RBIs in a Cape League debut, I don’t know that’s a record or if they keep records like that but that is special.”

 

Pompey, who will be participating in the NCAA Home Run Derby in Omaha on July 1st, unloaded on his first home run of the night in the bottom of the fifth.

 

With the Gatemen (4-6) leading 3-1, Pompey strode to the plate with two on and nobody out. The outfielder out of Kentucky jumped ahead in the count 2-1 and proceeded to get a fastball down and in.

 

Pompey turned on it, smoking it 410 feet over the Gatemen bullpen in right for the first of his two three run home runs to put the Gatemen on top 6-1.

 

That was just the opening act, however, to an even more dramatic main performance.

 

One inning later Pompey came to the dish in the exact same spot. The result was the same.

 

On 2-0 Pompey received yet another fastball eliciting a sound from his 33-inch wooden bat that gave the immediate impression that the ball that just came out of the hand of Firebirds’ reliever Brooks Wilson would not be returning.

 

Indeed an aura of shock struck over Spillane Field as Pompey crushed his second three run home run of the night over the goal posts in right centerfield that gave the Gatemen a 9-1 advantage.

 

“I saw the ball well and attacked the fastball whenever they threw it to me tonight,” said Pompey. “The power tonight just came naturally.”

 

In front of Pompey, the one-two duo of Jarren Duran and Kyle Kasser set the table to perfection.

 

Durran reached base in all five of his plate appearances. The second baseman out of Long Beach State worked three walks and scored four of the 11 Gatemen runs.

 

Durran got the Gatemen offense off on the right foot as he drilled a triple to right center to begin the contest.

 

Kasser, meanwhile, got on base four separate times, scored two runs, and provided a productive out, driving in a run via a groundball to shortstop.

 

“There were seven runs out of our top three guys tonight,” said Sneddon. “That is certainly exciting. I was not expecting the home run ball tonight but (Durran) getting us started with a triple really was terrific.”

 

Griffin Roberts out of Wake Forest made his first start as a member of the Gatemen and impressed over four innings of work.

 

While a closer for the Demon Deacons this past season, Roberts’ showcased that his pitching artillery is more than sufficient when stretched out.

 

The right-hander showed off a sinking four-seam fastball that hovered in the low to mid 90s. His most lethal weapon of all, however, was demonstrated when he spun in his slider. The whipping breaking pitch often seemed to start at the hip of the Firebirds’ batter before snapping back towards the plate for a strike.

 

Additionally, Roberts mixed in a changeup that him and Gatemen pitching coach Jim Lawler both hope can help improve Roberts’ development as a starter.

 

”It’s really good for (Roberts) because when he came in as just a closer he was focused on throwing only two pitches,” said Lawler. “Now, we try and stretch him out, and we add in that third pitch in a changeup. Overall he did a pretty good job of mixing that in there tonight.”

 

Over four innings of work, Roberts allowed one run, scattered five hits that were all singles, and struck out five.

 

Roberts, who at times has struggled with his command back at Wake Forest, had no such problems on Friday as he walked no one.

 

Pitching coach Jim Lawler said the start for Roberts was a step in the right direction.

Next up: The Gatemen travel to Falmouth to take on the Commodores on Saturday evening. First pitch is at 6pm.

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