The Legend of Cole Patten
When Pburg drew Sparta as their opening round opponent in the Hunterdon Warren Sussex Tournament, everyone raced to their computer to find out what the Sussex foe was all about. Who are their studs, who have they beat, what is their deal? Well, everything pointed to one guy. One pitcher who if you believed the stories you'd expect an 8 foot tall righty that throws literal flames from his right hand. But who is he? Phillipsburg plays in the vaunted Skyland Conference which features the likes of Alex Degen, Joey DeChiaro, Matt Busher, just to name a few of the D1 bound/MLB prospects in the conference. So what was the deal with Patten? He was pretty freaking good, pretty much as advertised minus actual flames coming out of his hands and about 20+ inches shorter. Well he took the mound and was quickly greeted with a sharp groundout from Stanskid and a foul ball that almost left the yard (what's up Lahey?) off the bat of Staggy Jack. The righty Chris Sale was up to the challenge as he mowed down Sparta hitters and the score was 0-0 after four. Sparta would strike for 4 runs in the top of the fifth and that was more than they needed to support their ace. With the Atlanta Braves in attendance, Patten struck out 12 reaching at least 91mph and allowed only two hits, both to Farmer Ray. It was a tough draw for the Liners and they exited the tourney early. Next up for Pburg is the boys across the river.