Monday, December 19, 2011

12/18/11- Moscone

Satch was up in the hills, having some early holiday revelry, sounds like I missed a good one, and also sounds like one of the teams could have used the extra bat....Here with the Recap is our own financial guru and stalwart MBC'er Jonathan (JT) Tiemann:

It was a nearly perfect day.  We had a perfect 18 from start to finish, and the teams initially looked like they were matched pretty well.  The day was cool and overcast, though the sun broke through at times.  The game started with a couple of southpaws working, Brian on the bump for the homers and Sean for the visitors.  Bob, leading the game off, hit a shot to right center, but Jay ran it down for the first out.  That pretty much set the tone for the first part of the game, as Brian shut down the visitors in order, and Sean returned the favor in the bottom of the frame.  The visitors scratched out a run in the second as Sean reached on a solid hit and worked his way around with aggressive baserunning and another hit. 
Sean kept dealing, and Brian worked out of a two-on, no-out jam in the third.  After three, we still stood at 1-0.

The visitors added single runs in the fourth and fifth, and when we went into the field for the bottom of the fifth, the visitors led 3-0 and Sean (with some fine fielding help, especially from Mitch in center and Lattig at second) had yet to allow a baserunner.  But Tony Rojas wore Sean out in an epic at-bat (must've been 25 pitches), finally taking the walk the third time ball four came around.  Some slick baserunning and the home side's first base hit of the game produced their first run.

Then came the sixth.  Duane, who had been complaining about being in a slump, led off by launching a triple over Jay's head, and the visitors' bats came alive.  We batted around, plating five and expanding the lead to 
On the other side, Sean kept mowing them down, finishing with 7 IP, 1 ER, a walk, 6 or 7 strikeouts, and only two hits allowed.  Tony pitched a couple of strong innings for the home side, and Dennis mopped up for them in the ninth (I can't resist saying I smoked a line drive into right against him, but my legs were so dead by then that it only went for a single).  Will and Greg (New Greg, that is, who looks likely to be New Greg for maybe 10 or 15 years) each pitched a frame for the visitors, and once they closed it out, the final tally was 11-3.  It was a little chilly and we're close to the shortest day of the year, so we left it there.


·         * Lattig was a machine at second base, fielding all the grounders, easy and hard, and making two great catches - one on a foul popup behind first and one going back into shallow right.

·        *  Mitch was Mitch in center, but he added a little flair with a fine sliding catch on a sinking line drive in the ninth

·        *  Sean was nearly unhittable, recording the aforementioned two-hit, seven-inning gem.

·       *   I miraculously escaped channeling Juan Uribe and spoiling the into-the-fifth perfecto with an error

·        *  Nick and Duane both sparkled at first, as usual

·         * Duane is officially out of his slump, with a triple and a double

·         * Yes, Bob had his HPB.

·        *  Dennis had a bunt single in the 9th, pushing the ball to Bob, who was playing third.  The only way the play could possibly have developed more slowly would've been if I had been involved.  

*    * Speaking of which, I won't mention my idiotic baserunning mistake.  Nice peg, Johnny.
       * After he finished pitching, Brian went out to center and promptly made a great running over-the-shoulder catch on a ball Sean hit.  I don't think it actually went 450 feet, but it seemed like it.  A very loud out.

Monday, December 12, 2011

12/11/11- Moscone

Well, I didn't play, but I did make it out to the beginning of the game, with Lil' Satch in tow.  We took a tour of the grounds, I gave him his first spin around the bases and explained what one flap down means.

It was a light showing, some thought because of the impending rain, football, holiday parties, or the glut is finally over.  In any case, it was 8-7, I felt bad not being able to even it up, but I would have felt worse if I had been suited up and playing when Mrs. Paige got there, hoping to spend time with her boys....even though I place complete (err..almost) trust in the MBC to successfully tag team babysit the kid.

DJ started for the homers, and was off to a rough start, which may be good in the long run if he wants to continue pitching with the club. His experiences with pitching thus far have been pretty easy gigs, compared with what us veterans would describe as the typical MBC outing.  This game proved to be much more of a MBC classic, 3 runs scored in the first, more than a few errors, tough outs all around.  Johnny Bartlett on the other hand, recognized the defense he had behind him and promptly threw two innings of perfect ball, before finally yielding an infield hit.  That proved to be short-lived success as the defense then turned a tailor made double play to erase the threat.  Ouch.

The visitors tacked on a few more, and Johnny continued to throw shut out ball, helped by a tricky slow curve that was maddening for the home squad.  DJ settled down and the homers hit parade dried up, helped by a couple of really nice plays from Will and Rich.

I had to leave in the 5th inning, with the score 5-0, so here is Johnny Bartlett with a biased review:

I went 7, allowing no runs (and precious few hits, if I may say so) taking full advantage of what appears to be a 36"-high mound that really helped Uncle Charlie. Defense was spectacular (as is needed in a shutout), with the Mitch and Chris flashing quite a bit of leather, but everyone really turned in a solid defensive effort. Nice plays in the outfield kept Rich off the sacks for most of the game.

Brian took it home for a 2 inning save. He also allowed no runs, pitching very effectively. I think his deuce also liked the high mound.

DJ settled down nicely after a shaky start and questionable defense. I think he went 6 innings. Dennis came in and pitch 2 innings, both one, two, three innings (incredible!). So he really had us flummoxed. Will came in in the ninth and put us down one, two, three (I believe) with his heater causing all the trouble.

I think the final was 6-0, visitors. 

Highlights (that I saw):

* Will and Mitch both had a couple of smokers at 3rd

* Visitors pulled a 6-4-3 classic, and a 4-6-3!

* Dj pitched well, handled the frustrations, and had a real loud line drive

* Johnny was all confidence on the tall mound

* Gaspar up the middle, after only one foul ball!

* Chris was not stranded on base, mostly because he wasn't at 3rd.

* Jeff (Number 84) played Rich perfectly to snare a down the line deep fly ball

* Liam had good contact all day

* Chris also had some nice plays at SS

* Johnny showed the true danger of the defense holding on to the ball, even when its the 2nd baseman, he successfully juked Elvin out and scored a run, while Elvin fake pumped over and over again.  Get the ball in, fellows!

* Nick Smith showed off his speed once more

* Dennis pitched 2 perfect innings, with great defense behind him

Brian Phelps had this to say about the game and the practice afterwards:

I relieved Johnny and got out of a jam after Rich scorched one down the line past McGrath and then Jay had a swinging bunt to Chris. Jay stole 2nd with Rich on 3rd and then stole 3rd with Rich on 3rd! PICKLE! But Greg wanted to keep the shutout in place, so graciously let Jay return to 2nd while keeping Rich at 3rd.  I then struck out Will on a called 3rd strike. Back door slider and Greg framed it perfectly!

The next inning 2 come-backers and a routine grounder to 3rd ended the game. Shutout intact.



* Dennis came in for an inning. Jeff lined one right back to Dennis who snagged it. Great play.

* I came up and CRUSHED the first pitch, but we had Mitch filling in right field and he made a HELLUVA catch half way into the infield of the other field. I thought it was over his head, but its Mitch. I tried to tackle him ala Barry Bonds to Torri Hunter in the All-Star game. But Mitch put the shake and bake on me.

* PS, Aiden and Liam saw me flip off Mitch after his catch. Tried to play it off like it was a thumbs up. (AOY... whoops)

* Also, after the game we did sliding drills. This was for John McGrath who seems to always have an awkward slide. So he and his kiddos, along with Greg (new), Elvin and myself did sliding drills for about 10 min.

* Then, to continue practicing since we only played 9 innings. Bob hit fly balls to McGrath and me, while Rich worked further on sliding drills for the kids. Bob's back only allowed for so much and then Rich came in. Holy Fuck Balls he hits a mean fly ball, from the Right Side!

* That all lasted for over 30 minutes. Until on a sliding attempt my calf crapped up from all the running. Thanks Bob and Rich for the extra work. I feel it today.

Here with more on Mitch's defensive amazements, is John McGrath, Esq.
I can accurately state that Johnny Bartlett pitched at least 6 (if not 7) innings of shut-out ball.

Also, of note, Mitch put on two catch-the-uncatchable-ball shows for the ages, in one case robbing Phelps of the hardest/farthest hit ball of his life and in the other case, a ridiculous Mays-style over the shoulder basket catch of a pop up out of play behind 3rd.

Special Note: Since Christmas falls on a Sunday this year, probably a good bet that there will be no game.  The following Sunday will be New Years Day, and we look forward to some real hung over baseball!  Maybe even a rematch of the Hippys vs. Squares?  Thoughts?

S. Paige

Monday, December 5, 2011

12/4/11- Moscone

An amazingly nice day, all week long I was hoping that the weather would hold, and dad-gumb it, it did!  We were overpopulated once more with 25 players, but it seemed to go alright, although we had trouble filling 9 positions, either because people were being overly polite by trying to sit out, or too many people to keep track of.  In any case, we got to play, so who can really complain?

Greg started for the homers and did well in keeping the score close, although the visitors did all their scoring early.  Will started for the visiting team, in a surprising move, and did well, held us to a few runs, and had K's as well, including me, thank you very much....

The score stood 4-2, visitors, for what seemed like a very long time.  Chris once again was left stranded on base, as we fell victim to the rally killing innings.  Will was throwing good ball, but with the numbers we had, he couldn't stay in there forever.  Greg bowed out after 4, so it seemed only fair to not let the other team have only one pitcher.  When Sean came in, we all grumbled a bit, since it didn't seem like our scoring chances were going up by any means.

On this sunny day in the Marina though, Sean proved to be human, or at least vincible.  That's the opposite of invincible, right?  In any case, we started scoring runs.  We took the lead, 6-4.  And the visitors started making errors, and then we scored some more runs, and then the visitors made some more errors.  The marathon inning went on and on, and by the time the smoke had cleared, we were looking at blowout time.  The visitors managed a run more or so, but it was never close again.

At the end of 9, we lost about 6 guys, but no one really noticed since we still had more than enough to play, so we kept on it, and had some extra inning fun.  Tony had thrown lights out in the 7th and 8th, Satch reentered for the 9th, and then New Greg (see highlights for nickname discussion) came in to throw the last couple, and did great.

Sean kept battling and never lost his sense of composure, but it was probably a frustrating day.  A special congrats to all the pitchers who threw off of the mound, which was about 4 feet tall and steep on the sides.

Final score, a soft 12-7?


* Both teams had a number of double plays, of the line out variety.  Another reason not to swing when a guy is stealing....

* Sean was the one who got Mitched this game

* Dennis tried a slash bunt, which I respect

* New Greg said his Japanese name is Daiji (prouniunced Die-jee) but that somewhere along the line in the US someone referred to him as DJ and it stuck.  So I think both are acceptable as of now, but I will wait for confirmation on what he wants.

* Richie brought out a new guy (verboten!) and the new guy hosed Greg at the plate with a spectacular throw (wow!).

* Ed got his RBI, and we answered the question as to whether a man on first is a RBI situation for him (it's not).

* My hitting was all over the place for the day- Dribbler over first, K swinging, solid line drive single, king single of gorks to right, deep drive over center (man that felt good.)

* Gaspar proved again how hard an out he is, he took a walk in the 2nd against Will, after 2 long at bats

* Dennis was almost thrown out at 1st, from left field

* JT might have had an OBP of 1.000

* Thanks to Ed, Bob, Greg, Adam, Gaspar for catching

* John Nero sighting, good to see you out again!

* Richie fell victim to lining it straight back to me (again)

* Adam was the winner of the Dave Johnson lookalike contest

* I made a Brooks Robinson-esque play at third, once I had the ball in my glove I knew I had a chance, but I am not sure I would have bet on me making that play

* Duane made a nice tumbling play on a pop up

* Gaspar also had a great play at home when we needed a run, slid and everything!

* Except for the meltdown inning, the defense on both sides was good

* The lunatic in left was entertaining, he kept reminding us that he was still there, and he had a good eye for balls and strikes

* Bob's hardest hit of the game was a play that the fielder didn't even have to move to make.  I bet you wish you had just been HBP instead?

* Mitch had another Rickey run, which I love.

* I am placing a moratorium on helmet throwing, Greg made a good point that it's the kind of thing that once in a while is mildly acceptable, but shouldn't be encouraged en masse, lest we become a game full of tantruming 2 year olds.  So, from now on, I will hold the helmet and slam it against the fence while whispering obscenities....

* Dee Dee didn't have to be chased off the field once!

Don't know where the game is next week.  I will not be there, next weekend is reserved for spending a much needed weekend out with Mrs. Paige and Lil' Satch.

S. Paige