Tuesday, December 8, 2009

December 6th, 2009- Balboa Park

Pitchers' duel
A low-scoring game in which the starting pitchers on both teams allow few hits and at most one or two runs.

So if ever there was a good description of a game this is it, although he way the game started, I wouldn’t have thought it would have been anywhere close. We had 20, by the time the Johnny come lately’s straggled in, and we set our sights on getting one more game before the winter officially descended. Satch started for the homers and promptly game up a leadoff triple to Bob, which was hit with such authority; if I didn’t know better I would have thought he knew I was going to hang a curveball to him. Bob, winded on third, was smiling big. Chris bashed another pitch to left, and made it to second. Sean sent a low hanging line drive that seemed destined for the third extra base hit in a row. But Gaspar, racing in, snatched it just above the turf, and then winged it into second to double off Chris who had scored by the time he realized the ball had been caught. The homers narrowly escaped the inning with only a run against them, 1-0.

However, Sean was dealing all day, and we went down with only one hit/error in our half of the 1st. And thus, the duel began. Sean overpowered us all day, we started to count the strikeouts and once we reached 10, we decided it was easier to just say he was a having a great day and leave it at that. Satch came back with a lot of guile, the knuckleball was hiccupping well in the heavy wet air, and we got out of a lot of tight spots with some clutch plays, including an "infield in" play at the plate. In the third, Tony got on, stole second, went to third on a pass ball, and Satch drove him in with a fielder’s choice up the middle. 1-1.

And it stayed like that. Through rain, hail, wind, and sun again. The outfielders shivering in the wet grass, infielders taking the ball in the painful palm of the glove, but still making the play. Gaspar, who had been traded after the first to the visitor’s team, ended up being the defensive player of the game, with a score of plays at third on hard hit groundballs, which snuffed every chance of rally we could muster. The K’s mounted, neither team willing to give in. We found ourselves facing another man on third, infield in situation, but this time Chris was the runner, and the groundball to Tony seemed tailor-made, the throw got there in time, and Greg got the tag on him. Only one thing was missing, the ball. It sat quietly behind the dish, just mocking us.

A nail biter of a 8th led to the last chance in the 9th, Sean and Satch still battling, neither willing to go until the contest was complete. Bottom of the 9th, Greg and Tony both get on, although only by the grace of God, as Chris had a chance at a perfect double play, the wet ball finally giving us a break. Satch strode the plate, confidence was high. So was the fly ball I hit to short center…. Greg, sensing our chances were becoming slim and few, tagged and raced for third. Stoner, catching the ball, winged it into third. Greg barely beat the throw (and should have been sliding), but then ran over the bag and past the tag, only to be tagged out trying to dive back to the bag. No one seemed to want it to end, but the next storm cloud was well overhead, and it was a carwash by the time we all got home, perhaps the final game of 2009 in the books, a classic contest, a team effort on both sides, and the best way to spend a Sunday.

• Bob, again with the bat, and throws out Cagle at second base, and it’s all on film!

• Sean, amazing performance, completely dominating, and a couple of fierce at bats as well.

• Struck out at least 3 with the knuckleball, perfect weather for it

• Some close plays at 1st, nice work getting the ball, and holding on to it

• Thanks to Nero for coming out with a bum wheel, and playing anyway!

• Satch made a nifty dive and catch on a infield pop up destined for no man’s land, scratched up my arm and leg pretty good too, something to brag about over the holidays

• Greg caught the whole game, nice work! Bob and Adam did a stellar job as well, nice to see Adam behind the dish again.

• Solid knock-it-down defense the whole game, it is great when the defenses are balanced

• Ben, Elvin, Vic, and Anthony, thanks for keeping up the attendance, and Stoner’s new guy, although we were worried his camera was going to get foul tipped

• The mad scramble of cops at 2:30 was weird, never seen a cop move that fast. Some sergeant in the Ingleside took a bullet fragment, and they swarmed. Kid who was arrested just got off a murder rap…

• If anyone buys pine tar over the break, make sure it’s the good stuff that smells like pine tar, not like weird chemicals, that new shit is terrible. And yes, there is a difference.

• New favorite BNB quote, “ I’m not going to talk to you about winning…I’m gonna talk to you about losing…Because if you lose this game…each and every one of you...is going have to live with that…you are about the best team I ever coached.”

Stay loose, stay dry, oil the glove and pray for sun,

S. Paige

The Video's

1. Caught Stealing ( I want everyone to watch where Bob's glove goes on that called strike....hahahahahaha, and well, what can we say Bob, you nailed that fucker! Showoff....

2. Big stick strikes out. Sorry Tony, think of it as a learning tool.

3. Chris takes Satch "deep drive."

4. Shitty Satch popup

5. I walk Sean, and then get him to swing at a knuckleball....I'm a dick....

6. Cagle Slash Bunts! I love it, always loved the slash bunt....the error helps....

7. The Big Stick gets caught leaning too, man...


unmusical said...

This was an all time great game for Mission Baseball. One of the best since that Greg v. Brian showdown at St. Mary's several years ago. (1-0 final. No errors. Maybe 3 hits in the game.)
Nice to see some video of this game.
With the rain season coming I knew I had to play. Black toe and all. Also broke in a new pair of spikes and pants. Glad I played. Was a great game. I somehow was able to get one of the only handful of hits in the game. Remarkable in that I believe it to be my first off of Sean. Defense was great. The few errors lead to no runs. With the overcast sky and no one around it had that Presidio field feel. And as Ben pointed out when all the cops jumpped in their cars and fled, "the station is empty."

More ups to all the new guys. I hope they stick with us on the other side of the rain season. They're great to play with and it's been a drag begging the old school guys to come back out.

S. Paige said...

I concur with everything you said John, we got to keep all the new guys excited about playing and away from the leagues....