Silver Knights’ bats suffer a sleepy Sunday vs. North Shore

Staff photo by TOM KING Nashua Silver Knights shortstop Bryce Reagan applies the tag to North Shore's George Sutherland at second during Sunday's game at Holman Stadium.

NASHUA – The bats aren’t exactly booming.

The Nashua Silver Knights are wondering what’s wrong with their offense after nine games to start the FCBL season.

They went into Sunday’s game at Holman Stadium hitting .225 as a team and didn’t improve that mark at all, shut out by the North Shore Navigators 8-0 to disappoint an announced crowd of 1,013.

“The scoring is just not happening,” Silver Knights manager B.J. Neverett said, his team now 3-6. “The thing that’s unsettling is we had a bad day at the plate and that was very below average FCBL pitching we faced today.”

“Just look at today,” Silver Knights outfielder Ryan Berardino, who had a double and is one of the few Knights hitting at a decent clip (.353). “Look at the amount of balls we hit at people. Our big issue all season has been hitting with guys in scoring position.”

The Navs (2-8) didn’t have that problem, outhitting Nashua 10-4, with four runs in the fourth and four in the eighth.

In the fourth, Knights starter Casey Candiotti (0-2) loaded the bases on a walk, hit batsman and base hit. That set the table for Navigators John Prentice’s two-run double, an RBI single by Joey Murphy and then an RBI ground out off reliever Manny Ray for a 4-0 lead. It could have been 5-0 except the Navs’ J.P. Knight didn’t slide on a play at home and was easily tagged out.

The other thing is the Knights haven’t played well in three straight games at Holman after winning in the home opener.

“You know what, we’ve been throwing our best starters on the road,” Neverett said. “Our real best, good college starters have pitched on the road. We haven’t had one of our better guys throw at home yet. Casey’s (four hits, four runs in 3.1 frames) very young, a redshirt. And he had a bad inning.”

Nashua looked several times like it would get something going against North Shore starter Ethan Dyer, who pitched from the stretch even with no one on and is great supporting evidence for a pitch clock. But with two on and no one out in the second, Andrew Gorham hit into one of their three double plays. Dyer didn’t even stay in long enough (three innings) to get the win, as reliever Dylan Gaita (1-1) picked it up with three innings of relief.

Nashua’s lack of offensive production mattered little by the late innings as the Navs tacked on four more off reliever Mike White thanks to a Joe Murphy RBI single, RBI groundout,a wild pitch and Elias Varinos RBI hit, the whole inning aided by shortstop Bryce Reagan’s second error of the game. Nashua committed four in all.

“That’s the other thing, we can’t make the errors we’re making,” Neverett said. “We just can’t do that.

“I don’t know, we’ll see. I think there are guys here that are really underachieving. We’ll see. It’s a long season, it’s only been nine games.”

“Give us time,” Berardino said. “It’s too early to start making conclusions.”

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Catch Mitch Baker (sore shoulder) is on the disabled list. Neverett says his availability is “a week-to-week thing”

Northeastern outfielder Jeff Costello was excused for the weekend to go to Baltimore to support Huskie teammate Nolan Lange, whom Never said was having important surgery. He should be back on Monday (today)…

Monday night at Holman (7:05) vs. Martha’s Vineyard the Knights will send out righty Spencer Langdon (0-1, 0.00). Tuesday at the Vineyard it will be Brandon Dufault (0-0, 2.25), and Pat Maybach (0-0, 0.00) vs. Worcester at Holman on Wednesday night.