Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Quarter Final Game: vs. Smurfageddon

This is long (that'swhatshesaid)

Weird. Fucking. Night.

I don't know how else to describe it. The mood of the game was off from the get go. It was windy and warm and twilightly and muggy and just...off. Its the kind of air that looms over you on nights where big things happen. Like presidential elections. You're there and you can't do anything about it, but you know something big is going on. I don't know how to properly describe it.

Going into the game I was nervous. Kelly can attest to this. We got to the field early and I just couldn't settle. We went out and bought some Crayolla sidewalk chalk paint so I could write nasty stuff about the Smurfs on the pavement, but I just wasn't in the mood.


- The wind was blowing from home plate to the outfield, causing every kick to carry and hang in the air. Adam J. was walking by home plate in his flip-flops (thongs) and kicked a random ball and it went over into left field, with no effort.

- The sun was setting and was shining into the eyes of the outfielders.

- Mandy bought a GORGEOUS sign for us. A HUGE banner that was just beautiful.

- Everyone bought water or Gatorade and stayed hydrated. The other team was lacking.

The game got off to a really rocky start, in spite of Scott's best efforts to slow down the game. Oh, before I get into THAT, we had a big issue with umping in the division that night. (note: I just deleted a major rant that I'll save for another time). Anyway, things got off to a late start. By the time the game started, it was close to 7:30ish.

In the first inning a few insane things happened. Well, Smurfageddon did what we all knew they were going to do, which was bunt, bunt, bunt kick. Unfortunately, it was the kick part that killed us. For whatever reason, in the first inning Scott was off his game. Its a rare thing to see Scott miss play a ball. Sure, he's dropped really tough catches. But he always has the sense to know the field and know where to get the ball to next. But the Smurfs sent two balls his way. The first got caught by the wind and carried a few feet above his head. By the time he brought the ball in, they had scored three runs. A few minutes later, it happened again. This time the ball dropped just short of his play, and somehow got past him. Another two scored. They finished up with some more bunting and small plays in the infield, and we were down by five going into the bottom of the first.

Morale was low. But we began to threaten in the bottom of the first, though we didn't score. Adam J and Jack both got out. Julie kicked a little grounder that was played poorly by the Smurfs, and as the ball sailed into foul territory along the fence, she RAN to 2nd then to 3rd. She pulled a triple out of her ass and it was all due to hustle and listening to her teammates. It was awesome. Unfortunately, she was stranded at third. Or was she? I remember she ran home, against my base coaching, but I don't know if the score counted.

Top of 2, we held them to no runs.

Bottom 2, everything broke loose. We loaded up the bases and Gari got up to kick. He kicked a huge fly ball to right center, and it was not only went over the head of the girl, but was misplayed by the outfielder. He cleared the bases and got a grand slam home run! This brought us within one, and everything changed from that point.

We started playing better on the field. Offense heated up a bit. In the bottom of the third, Scott got on board with two outs on a double. I dinked in a shot down the third base line and got on board. Then Richard came up to kick. He booted a line drive beauty between me running to 2nd and into right field. As it whizzed past me I shouted "Whoopsie Daisy" as I headed to third. Scott rounded third and slid into home, and though his hand hit the plate a beat before he was tagged with the ball, he was called out. Slight disappointment on his side, to say the least. I gotta say though, some of the outfielders on the Smurfs have guns. Their throws from the outfield in, were dead on, and fast.

Both the Smurfs and Ninjas brought in a run each going into the bottom of the fifth, with the score at 6 to 5. We were down, but we were up to kick. Somehow, we loaded the bases again, with no outs. With being down by two, all Sam (who was kicking) had to do was boot the ball to the outfield, anywhere, and we would have picked up at least one. Then we could have gotten another one.

This however, is what happened:

Sam was kicking, and kicked a foul ball here and there, took a couple of strikes. He was really feeling out the pitcher, waiting for the perfect pitch. He then kicked really poorly, a rolling ball through foul territory. BUT it rolled through the ambiguous gray zone (long story) into fair territory. Before he or the Smurfs realized what was happening, Sam was running to first and our players were running to the plate. A throw was made, for some reason, AT Sam and to first base. But the ball went wide and the Smurfs instead of playing the ball, stopped. They stopped (including Orion) to come argue the call. Two of our players made it across the plate. The game was over. Just like that.

Appropriate ending for a weird night.

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