Not 12 hours after arriving home and I was on the ball filed, ready to catch up on the last three weeks I had missed. Unfortunately the English weather followed me to SF, as we experienced one of the more foggy, windy, grim Sundays in recent history. There would be occasional warm up spots and then the chill breeze would start to blow again and all the humidity turned into cold. Muggy, cold, never actually saw the sun, but you knew it was up there somewhere.
We were a solid 16, but it felt like every time you sat down, it was either time to relieve the defense or time to take the field again. Or maybe it was just me, feeling lazy and bloated. Sean started for the homers and from the offset did not have his good stuff. It probably had to do with the 9 innings he had pitched the week before at SQ, however, it was a rare thing to have the visitors jump on him for 5 runs in the first inning, but jump we did.
Phelps started for the visitors, and looked good once he settled his arm angle down and got into a good 3/4 rhythm. Brian held the homers strangled for the first five frames, helped by some outstanding defense, especially from Daniel, who I think gets the defensive MVP for the day. In the first 3 innings, Daniel had about 7 put outs.
Sean gave way to Greg after 5 and Phelps handed the ball to Satch around the same time. By that time the score was something like 12-1, and between my lack of warming up and the knowledge that blowouts become miserable quickly, I tried my best to make sure I got some fat strikes across the plate. The homers started their weary climb out of the pit and with a sudden burst of scoring, reduced the deficit considerably. Greg was cheered on by the rablle of drunken revelers that had established a zone on the opposite bench, cheering him on and supporting the homers as they tried to come back.
I was going to throw 3 innings, but by the ninth, it seemed easier to throw one more than to have someone go through warming up. I should have just stuck with the plan, I got the first out , and then facing McGrath, I caught my spike in the hole in front of the rubber, and then inexplicably, comepletely lost everything: control, velocity, confidence, accuracy. Rather than risk major damage to my arm, or bean McG in front of his adoring family, I decided to take myself off the bump in the middle of the 9th inning. Daniel volunteered to pitch, and had his MBC debut on the rubber, threw strikes and after a little warming up was looking good.
The homers didn't comeback, but they never lost their ginger. The final score- 14-6? I don't think we could have talked anyone into playing extra innings if we had paid them in gold.
* Daniel, great with the glove, had a nice rip and pitching debut!
* JT thanked the infield collectively after the first inning which featured three picture perfect throws to 1st.
* Liam and Aiden both had legitimate hits
* John Nero broke his Sean curse to the tune of two monster hits
* Noah was presented with a beer from the rabble, in the fifth, after a nice play.
* John Carey was out again, played well, and once again Bob threw him out on a steal attempt. As Sean said, " Bob always saves one great throw for his kid."
* Jay had a long bomb in his first at bat.
* I ended up with a 1.000 OBP, and was 5-6. That felt good, after being worried that my timing was going to be all screwed up.
* A new guy Don, came out and seemed to know what he was doing, hit well, caught the ball.
* Elvin was defensively strong, despite his refusal to catch the ball with two hands.
* Catchers did a good job of blocking the ball, since we have to at Big Rec.
* Phelps had two parts of a AOY triple crown for throwing out Aiden at first and then picking him off third
* JT had what was described as a "Gasparian" at bat, which featured about 6 foul balls to the left side
* At one point during a long rally, I offered to try and get out, Greg told me to stuff it, they didn't need my pity. That's MBC pride.
* One of the passers by almost walked off with one of our foul balls, where did they think they were?
* Phelps' casual underhand toss to first after a nice spinning play, almost died before it got there.
* Bob was 0-6, but was on base at least twice.
* Noah and I had a rare off day in the battery, I think I shook off the first pitch 90% of the time. Which is a lot, usually I only shake off 75% of the time, right Greg?.....
See you at the Double header.