Rick O'Brien: Garrett likes to finish what he starts

The Falcons' Garrett is 3-2 with a 1.71 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 322/3 innings, while allowing just 19 hits.He has 13 complete games over the last three seasons.
The Falcons' Garrett is 3-2 with a 1.71 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 322/3 innings, while allowing just 19 hits.He has 13 complete games over the last three seasons.
Posted: April 18, 2013

As Pennsbury coach Joe Pesci knows well, Falcons righthander Brandon Garrett would rather undergo complicated root canal than be pulled from a game.

"We were playing Harry S Truman and I was walking toward the mound," Pesci recalled. "He's like, 'I'm not coming out of this game.' I said to him, 'Calm down. I'm just coming out to talk to you.' "

Garrett's workhorse approach to pitching has been evident in his Pennsbury career. The 6-foot-2, 190-pound senior has worked 13 complete games over the last three seasons.

"I'm just a competitor," he said. "I go out there with the goal of pitching all seven innings. I feel like I pitch the best in the fifth, sixth, and seventh innings. I live for late-game pressure."

Garrett, ticketed for Rhode Island, has helped the Falcons to a solid start. The captain is 3-2 with a 1.71 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 322/3 innings. He has allowed 19 hits.

"Beyond having a good fastball, he's aggressive and has a strong work ethic," Pesci said. "He's a battler, gives you all that he has to give."

With Garrett as the ace, Pennsbury is 5-3 overall and 3-3 in the Suburban One League National Conference.

In Monday's 3-1 loss to Truman, the 17-year-old went the distance, striking out eight and allowing seven hits.

Garrett mixes a fastball clocked in the high-80-m.p.h. range, 12-6 curveball, slider, and change-up. He also aids the Falcons on an as-needed basis at shortstop, third base, or outfield.

After taking a year off from football, Garrett returned to the gridiron, as an outside linebacker and safety, last fall.

"It was a positive experience," he said. "I'm glad I did it."

Pennsbury's pitching staff also includes lefthander Joe Sabatino, who is headed to Philadelphia University, and righthanders Dan Kliesh, Connor Ward, and Brody McFadden. Kliesh is working his way back from an ankle injury suffered during wrestling season.

At the plate, the spark plugs include second baseman and leadoff man Brendan Campbell, third baseman Ben Herring, catcher Kyle Marshall, and centerfielder Ryan Sheaffer.

In a 4-0 blanking of William Tennent earlier this month, Garrett struck out eight and threw a two-hitter. He fanned 44 in 441/3 innings last season

The Levittown resident caught the eye of Rhode Island coaches during a showcase event at Diamond Nation in Flemington, N.J. He also received interest from Lackawanna, Rider, and Virginia Commonwealth.

Silent auction. West Chester Henderson will raise funds for breast cancer awareness and research when it hosts Ches-Mont League rival West Chester Rustin at 4 p.m. Monday at Owens Field.

The "Unite for HER" campaign will include a raffle and auction of items, including three baseballs signed by the five starters for the 2012 World Series-champion San Francisco Giants: Madison Bumgarner, Matt Cain, Tim Lincecum, Ryan Vogelsong, and Barry Zito.

Also set to be auctioned are Phillies tickets, a signed Jose Bautista jersey, a signed Jose Reyes bat, and a signed R.A. Dickey baseball.

Extra bases. In a Central League showdown at 3:45 p.m. Thursday, No. 7-ranked Strath Haven (9-0 overall, 7-0 league) will visit No. 2 Conestoga (8-1, 7-0). Senior righthander Kevin Bosco (3-0 record) is the Panthers' scheduled starter. The Pioneers are expected to counter with junior lefty Drew Jackson (2-0). . . . Through Tuesday, Calvary Christian senior righthander Tyler Scheuer was 2-1 with a 2.72 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 18 innings. Teammate Mark Farley, a junior catcher, was batting .556 with a .619 on-base percentage.

For Upper Moreland, junior first baseman-pitcher Charlie Hooker was batting .542 with a .958 slugging percentage, 15 RBIs, eight runs, and two home runs. . . . Neshaminy outfielder-pitcher Justin Andrews, a Monmouth recruit, was hitting .536 with 11 runs and seven RBIs. He had a .929 slugging percentage. . . . Through Archbishop Wood's first nine games, senior twins Joe and John Santospago were batting .469 and .419, respectively. Vikings hurler Justin Babb was 2-0 with a 3.11 ERA and 25 Ks in 18 innings. . . . Archbishop Carroll shortstop-pitcher Eric McGough, a Wagner signee, was hitting .500 with 11 runs and five RBIs.

Rick O'Brien: The Inquirer TOP 10


Team Rec.

Records are through Tuesday.

Last week's rankings in parentheses.

1. Coatesville (2) 8-1

2. Conestoga (1) 8-1

3. Malvern Prep (5) 13-3

4. Cent. Bucks East (6) 7-1

5. Bonner-Prend. (8) 8-2

6. Neshaminy (NR) 7-1

7. Strath Haven (9) 9-0

8. Cent. Bucks So. (4) 6-2

9. Spring-Ford (NR) 8-2

10. Pennsbury (7) 5-2

Under consideration (listed alphabetically): Archbishop Wood (6-3), La Salle (7-3), Neumann-Goretti (6-3), Phoenixville (5-3), Springside Chestnut Hill (7-3), St. Joseph's Prep (8-4).

- Rick O'Brien

Contact Rick O'Brien

at robrien@phillynews.com. Follow @ozoneinq on Twitter. Read his blog, "The O'Zone," at www.philly.com/ozone

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