Pomeroy excelling in role for Bravehearts

By John Orrell, Contributing Writer

Kendall Pomeroy. Photo/submitted

Worcester – A quality, late-inning reliever who can throw strikes, leave men on base and set the stage for the team’s closer to wrap things up is a welcome addition on any baseball coach’s roster. Finding someone of that ilk is another thing altogether.

Worcester Bravehearts manager J.P. Pyne seems to have found just such a fit with Shrewsbury’s Kendall Pomeroy and the numbers and intangibles the 6’4” right handed reliever has produced are proof positive.

Through the end of June, the former St, John’s High standout pitcher has recorded a stellar 2.61 ERA in seven appearances in which he has struck out 14 batters almost all being in tight situations. He is also capable of stretching his arm in longer stints such as in the team’s earlier season matchup with the Seacoast Mavericks in which he went four innings allowing just one run.

“Kendall’s really been a pleasant surprise,” said Pyne. “Early on, we put him into some higher leverage situations and he responded really well. We didn’t want to overwork him so to some degree we backed him off and gave him a couple of days rest.

“He’s gotten a little more into that one inning, maybe six outs relief position for us. But he’s a guy who’s really valuable for us because we feel like we can stretch him out and get more outs if we need it. His breaking ball has been very good and his fastball is really firm. He’s gotten a lot of swings and misses and his compete level is right where we want it to be.”

“Kendall is no question the hardest worker on the team,” said UMass Lowell head coach Ken Harring who has coached him the past two seasons. “He has a team-first mentality and is a strike-throwing machine. He doesn’t just throw strikes, he throws quality strikes. He’s not one to be disappointed that he’s not our number one starter, he just likes to compete.”

The Bravehearts are one of 10 teams from various parts of New England that comprise the Future Collegiate Baseball League (FCBL). The team plays 28 home games at Hanover Insurance Park and 28 away games and consistently draws between two and three thousand fans on any given night. Making the jump from playing at UMass Lowell the past two seasons into the more rigorous competition has been virtually seamless and gets better and better the more the season progresses despite the many ups and downs at this level.

“This (Bravehearts) is definitely a different environment to play in,” Pomeroy admitted. ”It’s fun to get out with a different bunch of guys. We’re coming together as a team and I think we have a chance to make a run in the playoffs. Everyone’s coming from different schools and we’re still trying to know each other. It’s a quicker pace of play than college. You have to be sharper.

“The hardest part of baseball for me is bouncing back from a tough outing when you’re kind of demoralized. When you go out on the mound and the product isn’t really what you want. It’s important to be bouncing back from those performances and shaking it off, go out the next time and not have that lurking in your mind.”

Pomeroy has had many positive influences along the way with the most impactful being not far from home.

“My parents helped me a lot and also my brother (Curtis). He played baseball collegiately and kind of set me on the right path of working hard, getting in the gym and working hard at baseball.”

Off the field is where a player can shine just as much as on the diamond. A teammate who can fit in to the clubhouse rapport, take matters seriously but knows when to back off in difficult situations is a welcome addition. Both Pomeroy’s coaches agree that he fills the bill in that regard to near perfection.

“Kendall’s a sneaky, funny guy. He’s got kind of a dry sense of humor and he fits in really well,” Pyne said. “He’s another guy who comes in here and he’s comfortable. He’s made a great transition on to this team.”

“Off the field, he is really well-liked by his teammates,” Harring added. “He can be witty but not loud and has an infectious laugh. He’s a pleasure to have around because everybody likes him.”

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Posted by on Jul 5 2017. Filed under Byline Stories, Neighbors in the news, Shrewsbury, Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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