|The Pirates and the Giants squared off again
on a hot Saturday afternoon game. But what's this
with the parents in the stands? They're wearing
black! Didn't they learn in school that light
colors reflect heat -- they must be up to
something. Coach Rodney, do you have any idea
what's going on? Oops, sorry. Coach Rodney is in
the corner crying. Apparently he was listening to
the old Jimmy Buffett classic tune "A Pirate
Looks At Forty". Oh, I get it. Coach Rodney
turns the big Four-Oh today. Or is that the big
Four-UhOh? Anyway, enough with the old fogey. On
to the game report.
Ryan led off with an easy
grounder to the pitcher, who tossed to first for
the easy out. Oh no, this is what happened last
night (meek grounders to infielders, especially
pitchers). I even heard Coach Rodney say
"This is getting old". To which the
parents in the stands replied "No,
YOU"RE getting old!!". Blake followed
with a slow roller to second -- this time Blake
*barely* beat the throw at first. Andrew then
lifted a fly ball, directly to the left fielder,
who speared it for the second out. Michael
slapped a single just past third base and we had
"ducks on the pond" for Anna. Sadly,
Anna grounded out to the second baseman.
"Boy, this is getting old", muttered
Coach Rodney. "No, YOU'RE getting old!"
yelled the parents.
In the bottom of the first inning, the first
batter lifted a single just over Blake's head at
shortstop. The next batter cracked a sharp
grounder to third base. B.J. is a master of the
hot corner, and calmly scooped the ball and
*fired* a strike to Anna at first base. Sweet!! A
single and a stolen base put a runner on second.
The cleanup hitter smacked another one to B.J. at
third base. B.J. looked for the tag play on the
advancing runner, but B.J.'s quick reaction
prevented the runner from moving up. Two batters
later, B.J. had the same play, looking for a tag
and preventing the runner from advancing to
third. Heads-up play around the ol' hot corner,
B.J.! A final hit pushed across the fifth run for
the Giants. Pirates trail 5-0 after one inning.
In the second, Coach Rodney was looking to
play a little "small ball" (scoring
runs without big extra base hits). Hayden and
Brian each put down a bunt single to give the
Pirates runners at first and second with nobody
out. B.J. then smashed a ground ball right at the
third baseman. The third baseman got the easy
fielder's choice, but at least B.J. made him work
for it with a hard hit ball. Matthew followed
with a groundout to the pitcher. Max slapped a
single to shortstop, which plated Brian. Then
Christopher grounded meekly to the pitcher.
"This is getting old!" moaned Coach
Rodney, in apparent agony. "No, YOU'RE
getting old" yelled the parents. Coach
Rodney gets no respect....
In the bottom of the second inning, the Giants
got three hits, which scored one run. The
highlight of the inning was the final batter
popping up in front of the plate. Andrew blasted
out of his crouched catching position, tossed the
mask (I think), and gloved the popup. That was a
definite hit if Andrew didn't make the play. Good
The Pirates head to the third inning down 6-1.
After an opening strikeout by Josh B., Josh M.
followed with a ground ball, directly to the
first baseman. He took only two steps and made
the forceout. "YOU'RE getting old!!"
yelled the Pirate fans. "Hey, I didn't say
anything!!", griped Coach Rodney. Time for a
little two-out rally! Ryan and Blake got infield
hits off the second baseman. Since we don't have
video replay of the event, we can assume that
these were smash hits at the second baseman.
Andrew followed with a no-doubt-about-it
smash-o-rama off the third baseman's leg. That
scored both Ryan and Blake. A final strikeout
ended the scoring. Pirates get two.
In the bottom of the third, the Giants were
back to the top of their order. The leadoff
hitter hit one up the middle. Brian snagged it
from his pitcher position, and fired on to Anna
for the out. Greedy Brian also gobbled up a slow
roller down the first base line and quickly
released the ball in time to get the speedy
batter for the second out. Two hits scored one
run. Then Ryan fielded a grounder at deep
shortstop. He chunked it way across the diamond
to an outstretched Anna for the final out. After
three innings, the Pirates trail 7-3.
In the Pirates' fourth inning, Anna led off
with a grounder to shortstop. The tough little
Giants shortstop tossed out Anna at first base.
Hayden followed with another bunt single. Brian
got a single off the pitcher (whew!, that was
close). A double steal and a passed ball scored
Hayden. B.J. then lifted a soft fly ball to the
hole between shortstop and third. The quick
shortstop caught the fly ball and tossed on to
third to double up Brian. I don't think Brian
thought the play was gonna be that close. Oh
well. One more run makes it a 7-4 game. Time to
The Giants first batter struck out. Then the
next batter smacked a grounder to B.J. at third
base. B.J. made a nice play and threw to first.
Coach Rodney celebrates as B.J. makes another
great play! What? Oh, the runner is safe, as the
throw just barely pulled Michael off the bag. The
next batter hit a grounder to the pitcher
(apparently, we're not the only team doing that).
Andrew made the easy play, gloving the grounder
and throwing to Michael at first base. Another
batter hit a grounder to Blake at second. Blake
quickly threw to Michael to get the speedy
batter. That ended the inning. No runs score! The
Pirates still have a chance, trailing 7-4. We
need some offense!!
In the top of the fifth, Matthew struck out
and Christopher grounded out to the pitcher.
"This is surely getting old", groaned
Coach Rodney. "Aw, BE QUIET" yelled the
unruly fans. And then as an afterthought,
"Oh yeah, you're OLD too!". Josh B.
followed with a two out dink in front of the
plate. That's just as good as a bunt. Coach
Rodney thought that was pretty effective, so he
went for some more "small ball", having
Josh M. put down a bunt. Back to the top of the
order! And Ryan (oh no) grounds right back to the
pitcher. It's another easy out. Coach Rodney, can
I get a comment? Sorry, Coach Rodney is
unavailable. He's hitting his head against the
In the bottom of the fifth, the Giants score
5. Defensive highlights included Michael fielding
a bunt and chunking to Anna at first base for the
out. Ryan had another sweet assist from shortstop
to first base on a grounder by the leadoff
hitter. And Michael ended the inning by fielding
another grounder at pitcher, and tossing to Anna
for the third out. The Pirates are looking at a
tough situation, down 8 runs.
In the sixth inning, a new team came to the
plate. No, this wasn't the Pirates of the last
two games. This was the old Pirates!! ~~ Hey, I
know who the real OLD Pirate is. Ha Ha. To which
Coach Rodney replied "Watch it, you old
parrot. I can replace you with a simple
keystroke." OK, never mind. ~~~ Back to the
last-inning rally. Blake led off with a double to
right center field. Then Andrew hit a single
right up the middle. Michael followed with a
single off the shortstop (man, he made a nice
play though). Anna fooled everyone with her
reputation for power and cranked one about 5 to 6
feet in front of the plate. Hayden followed with
a single. Brian hit into a fielder's choice. B.J.
hit another one down the third base line for a
single. Then Matthew got a single. Chris followed
with (another) grounder to the pitcher. Hey, find
another fielder! We *know* the pitcher can make
the play. Josh B. ended the inning with a
strikeout. The Pirates score 6!! That's more like
the Pirates we know and love!
Final score was 12-10, with the Giants coming
out on top. Coach Rodney looked to the strong
defense of B.J. at third base for today's player
of the game honors. B.J. knocked down everything
that came his way, made heads-up plays, and threw
bullets to first base. B.J. is settling in nicely
to the hot corner. And he is a very deserving Pirate Pick
for today's game. Way to go, B.J.!
And what's this? The unruly fans, who teased
Coach Rodney all game long, help lead a chorus of
Happy Birthday for Coach Rodney. And a cupcake?
Coach Rodney has another tear in his eye...
Thanks guys! Nothing's better than a baseball
game to keep you feeling young. All is forgiven.
And let's play a top-notch game next time!!