GAME REPORTS JULY 5, 2018
Blue Pills and Rusty Royals Solve Nothing on Sweltering Day in the Sun
It was billed as the battle of the ages -- or at least the last two weeks -- as the league's hottest teams met on the hottest day of the year.
And for a few brief moments Thursday, the second-place Rusty Royals could see first place. But, it turned out to be a mirage created by the shimmering heat rising off the diamond -- or possibly dehydration.
After an impressive 12-1 win over the first-place Blue Pills in the opener, the second-place Royals saw their hopes dashed in the closer as the Pills came back to win 10-4 and hold on to top spot.
Because of the heat, the first game was a six-inning affair with the batters starting each at bat with a one-and-one count. With timely hitting and solid defence -- especially from Doug Wingrove, Rick Wilcox, Max Crocker and Mike Horner -- the Royals led 12-0 going into the bottom of the fifth with a mercy victory within reach. But the Pills, who managed only six hits on the day, averted that ignominious fate with a run on two of their six hits.
Whether the Pills snapped out of their slumber or the Royals went to sleep in the second game, the result kept the standings unchanged.
The Pills bats finally woke up in the second with five hits and three runs. However, the Royals answered back with four runs of their own and grabbed a 4-3 lead. But the Pills scored twice more in the third to take a 5-4 lead they never relinquished.
The Pills defence took over and stymied the Royals over the remainder of the game. Bob Rose made a great running catch on a ball that was hit over his head. Aarne Kartna was a perfect 2-for-2 in the second game, while Jack Pang, John Finley and John Good were 2-for-3.
Golds and Greys Split a Pair on a Day That Will Live in Lethargy
Heat lethargy and an unpopular 1-and-1 count to start every at-bat resulted in stagnant offences for both the Grey Beards and Golden Agers as they slow-motioned their way to a split decision.
Asking for volunteers to ride the pine was out of the question for both managers as there would not have been enough players left on the field to constitute a regulation game. The Greys shot out of the gate with an immediate five-spot that constituted their main effort for the day. The equally mundane Golds answered with their own five-run inning -- but alas, not until the middle of game 2. Final scores of 11-6 for the Beardies and 6-3 for the Goldens meant no movement in the standings for either team.
Although the main action on the benches was around Wilky's Water Wagon and Watermelon Stand -- a wholly owned subsidiary of Rick Wilkinson Enterprises, Inc. -- there were some bright spots on the diamond.
For the sweaty Golden boys, Ty Crawford tried to finally break in his glove by spearing a rocket shot at third and numbing his hand for the rest of the day. Fortunately, holding a cold beer at the pub helped soothe the bruise.
John Manderson threw a laser from centre field that the catcher didn’t need to move for and shut down a Grey rally. Terry Ronneberg, Tom Gorman, Crawford and Manderson (not the law firm) all went 3-for-5 on an uncharacteristically quiet day for the Golds at the plate. The most excitement was reserved for two bad hops on the rock-hard infield that almost took off the noses of Tom Gorman and Bill Tyler.
With four mates missing for the bearded ones, the Beards not only got refreshment from Wilkinson, but a 3-for-3 performance at the plate along with three runs in the opener. He also provided superb pitching, with two strikeouts -- including the final out.
Peter Bowers also went 3-for-3 and scored twice.
The opener appeared to take the sting out of the Beards' bats as they were held to two runs and 11 hits in the second.
Post-game banter found the "Weiro-Beardo" guys chuckling to themselves, saying, "We like to start a new win streak each week. It gives us something to play for." And, as Mike Way says, by not scoring runs, we get back to the pub to get the freshest wings and coldest beer. Pretty smart, eh???
The lone bearded star of Game 2 was Neil (the Fountain of Youth) Donaldson, who was 2-for-2 (4-for-5 on the day) while providing perfect defence in right field.
White Hairs Overcome the Odds to Split with Red Faces
With the temperatures at post-nuclear levels, the managers of the White Hairs and Red Faces wisely decided to play only six innings in the opener and leave the length of the second game up in the steamy air.
Possibly spurred on by the immediacy of the situation -- or the lure of post-game beer -- the Whites came out swinging and scored runs in the first with Bert Therrien, Larry Weber, Bob Oliver and Cubby Hubert collecting RBIs.
Another four runs appeared to be more than enough as Bert (Blyleven) Therrien held the Reds to two runs over the first four innings in the oppressive heat.
But the Reds' big bats came to life in the sixth as they scored five times to tie the game at 9-9.
That set the stage for the bottom half of the inning, when the Whities managed to get a man over to third with two outs and Therrien ended it with a game-winning hit for a 10-9 victory. By the way, this was not the only game that Therrien ended (more on that later).
Dave Adams had a strong game for the Whites and got on base each time he came to the dish.
The Reds' sixth-inning outburst obviously inspired them in Game 2.
The writer, One-Thumb Greg Hughes, had a good vantage point from the catcher's position and noted lots of well-placed hits, away from the gloves of the Whites.
The Reds were up 6-0 after two before the Whities even knew what hit them. The Whites fought back in the third, putting up a five-spot with five hits and a couple of walks. But alas, that was all she wrote for the Whities as the Reds pulled away for an 11-5 victory as seven players had perfect 2-for-2 games.
The second came was shortened to five innings, again through the infinite wisdom of the managers.
The Whites managed 12 hits and got some solid defence, especially from Jeff "Morty" Morton.
As mentioned before, Bert Therrien ended both games, although this time he recorded the last out by getting caught leading off.
However, Therrien did have a couple of solid games both pitching and at the plate. Larry Weber did a fine job spelling off Therrien on the mound in the second game.
For the Reds, the offensive star was Don Yaschyshyn, who had a 5-for-5 day and was almost as hot as the weather.
Paul Black had three hits in the first game while Garry Schultz and Al Stokes had four hits on the day.
Ted Talbot, George Merrick, Doug Ford and Hal Ridley were also 2-for-2 in the second game.
Offence Takes Day Off as Gimps Sweep the Staggering Wines
The cars parked in the first row outside the fence at Glenashton East were in no danger as the Green Gimps and Fine Wines put on a dazzling display of offensive mediocrity in their two-game tilt.
In Game 1, the Gimps put up a five-spot in the top of the first inning, including an inside-the-park homer by manager Michael Kitchen. In the bottom half the Wines threatened to do serious damage, but Gimps namesake left fielder Doug Briscoe made a nice running catch and threw a strike to home plate to beat the runner and snuff the rally.
The Gimps failed to score in the next two innings, and in the top of the fourth manager Kitchen was overheard muttering, “Damn, do I have to do it all myself?” on his way to the plate. He followed that promptly with another inside-the-park homer, thus answering his own question. In the bottom of the fourth Gimps outfielder Brock Patterson caught three successive fly balls to retire the side – one of which he actually had to move to catch.
The Wines chipped away at the lead and were down a scant four runs entering the bottom of the seventh. With one run in, two runners on base and the tying run at the plate, Gimps rover Ron Linklater made a nice running catch to spoil the Wines' hopes and preserve a 9-6 win.
In Game 2, the eternally shorthanded Wines broke out of their eternal batting doldrums with six runs in the first two innings. Suddenly remembering that the game was shortened to five innings, the Gimps did the math and decided it was time to put up some crooked numbers themselves, scoring five in the bottom of the second and four more in the third for an 11-7 win. The only really dramatic battles during Game 2 took place in the dugouts as players jostled for the shade.
Numerous batters on both teams appeared to be thrown off by starting with a 1-1 count (at least that’s our story and we’re sticking to it). However, a few Gimps batters thrived under the temporary rule: Kitchen was 5-for-5, Steve Vitella was 4-for-4 and Briscoe and Ron Linklater were each 4-for-5.
With reports submitted by Tom Hunter, Greg Aubert, Greg Hughes, Gary Goulden, Doug Ford and Roy Kitching. Editing and compilation completed by Chris Zelkovich.
Splitsville for White Hairs and Golden Years
As the Oakville Parks ground crew tended to the playability of the wet Glenashton infield Thursday, White Hairs assistant manager Larry Weber (filling in for the absent Bill Johnson) took the opportunity to address his players. While Weber verbalized his thoughts, a few of his teammates were heard whispering, "Dictator." Some players used only the first syllable of the title.
But Weber's emphatic pep talk paid off handsomely as the White Hairs erupted for 5 runs in the first inning, 5 more in the second and 3 more in the third to take a commanding 13-7 lead at the half way point of this 6-inning game.
By the top of the sixth, the lead was down to only 4, but he Hairs then sent 10 runs across the plate and pulled away to win 24-11.
Offensively for the Hairs, it was a total team effort with all 12 players scoring at least once. Leading the pack was alpha male Dave Adams, with 5 hits and 3 runs. John Vinnai let his bat do the talking as he was a perfect 4-for-4 at the board and scored thrice. Ev Lucenti and Ron "Sweet" Louttit each had 3 hits and scored twice.
As for the Golds in the first game, it was a matter of too many holes in the dike (spelled with an i) and not enough fingers. Enough said.
With the coach threatening to make everyone exchange gloves for game 2, the Golden-haired boys decided to pick it up with the bats instead and pounded out 32 hits for 20 runs. By the bottom of the final frame, the Hairs were down 7 runs and in need of a huge comeback. The first 5 batters scored. But with the tying runs on base and only one out, the comeback came to a sudden stop as the Golds prevailed 20-18.
In addition to offence, the Gold Guys got lots of defence in game 2. Solid outfield work highlighted by good snags from Mike Albert, Terry Ronnenberg, John Manderson and Tom Sawa helped keep the Golds in both games by halting innumerable potential rallies from the Achromic Manes. At the plate, Bill Tyler and John Manderson went a tidy 6-for-7 each while Albert and the normally befuddled coach had 5 hits in 6 plate appearances.
Offensively for the Hairs, it was the 1-2 combination of Adams and Lucenti, who were each a perfect 4-for-4 at the plate and combined for 5 runs in the second game. Louttit and Jeff Morton added 5 runs from 6 hits. And Bob George turned his two walks into a pair of runs.
Back at the bar with 11 of their 12 players present, it was agreed that the Hairs are not a baseball team with a drinking problem, but a drinking team with a baseball problem.
Gimps and Rusty Royals take turns thrashing each other
The first few Green Gimps wandered sleepily on to the diamond at Glenashton West to find a full squad of Rusty Royals in the midst of a spirited batting practice. It appeared that some Royals may have camped at the field overnight in their eagerness to test their mettle against the surging Gimps. But the apparent attempt at intimidation failed to impress the Greenies.
In fact, it didn't help the Royals' performance at all.
In Game 1, the Royals looked, well…do you remember the 1962 expansion New York Mets? Out of form after missing last week's games for the first time since Glenn “Might Casey” Crane left grade school, Crane had but one hit, and it was a single.
Crane explained it by claiming that when he played with the immortal Ty Cobb, sometimes even the great Cobb had off days. Truth be told, in a confidential interview after the game, Crane argued that it was Coach Max Crocker’s fault.
Crocker had his three lawyers (Henderson, Mott and Koopman) batting 1-2-3 in the order -- an innovative but somewhat unorthodox strategy. In an honest moment, Crane was heard to murmur, “There was no way I was driving a lawyer home. Of course, I stranded 'em and Iet 'em die on the vine.”
We know what happened to Shoeless Joe. How will Commissioner Picken sanction Glen “Might Casey" Crane?
If anything, the early Royals practice seemed to inspire the Gimps.
Batting cleanup in the top of the first, Jim Moriarty belted a four-bagger, which quickly gave the Greens a 2-run lead, which they expanded to 11-6 after three innings.
Then the sun came out and lethargy set in, as both teams failed to score over the next three innings.
Actually, the zeroes on the scoresheet were largely due to crisp defence on both sides. Royals second baseman Ian Schell was outstanding while Steve Moses of the Gimps made a desperate lunge to snare a rocket that could have spelled serious trouble in the sixth.
Entering the top of the seventh, Gimps manager Michael Kitchen observed that (i) a 5-run lead is insufficient in slo-pitch and (ii) the Royals were due to break out any minute. He wisely exhorted his teammates to add some insurance and his minions responded, sending 12 men to the plate and notching 6 more runs to record a 17-6 victory.
The game one highlight came from Gimps pitcher Art "The Dark" Knight (on his 80th birthday, more or less), who threw four consecutive innings of shut-out ball. (The Rusty Royals are really nice to the elderly.) The Dark Knight even got Mac MacAuley out in two consecutive at bats.
Steve Moses and Tom Hunter were each 4-for-4 to lead the Gimps in the opener. Ross MacIntosh was 2-for-2 with two walks (one intentional!), John Stillich was 3-for-4 and Peter Dovey was 2-for-3 with a sacrifice fly. Special thanks to the Royals guy who stood in as the Gimps third base coach in the seventh inning when no one wearing green was in the vicinity.
Mike Horner drove in three for the Royals but batted lower in order and was careful not to drive in any lawyers who might still be on base.
In Game 2, Crocker revamped his lineup, dumped the opening statement lawyers (except for Henderson, who just keeps getting on base), and packed the middle with renowned heavyweight sluggers like the now reformed Crane, Parisiani, Horner, MacAulay, Schell and Brown. The popular consensus is that the Rusty Royal lawyers (excluding Henderson) are unlikely to see the top of the order again this year.
Henderson, Crane (graphically showing how he had thrown Game 1), Schell, and Brown all had three hits for the Royals. Finally healthy, Schell is rounding into mid-season form and was the Unrustiest Royal on the field. In addition to his three hits and three runs scored, he made several sterling grabs on hot liners --one of which he even had to move to get -- and cleanly handled a number of rocketed ground balls.
Terry Stroud was 2-for-2 and has probably regained the league batting average lead.
The Gimps batters had an aggregate of 7 hits in the second game. Enough said.
Base-running woes prevent Grey Beards from major upset
Clearly the cream-of-the-crop Blue Pills were going up against the only team that could figure them out this year: the not-so-creamy Grey Beards, whose season has been hit and miss (or should that be swing and miss?) all year.
But the always positive skipper Lloyd Johnston reminded his bearded mates that the opposition was not as formidable as they seem and expected to come away with two victories. This might very well have happened except for a couple of overzealous base-running mistakes ln the bottom of the seventh inning of the opener.
These runners will remain nameless (excuse me while I clear my throat) until after their team penalty has been assessed (which may include copious cash donations to the beer fund). Too bad, as the Bearded Brigade battled hard all game and came back from a 13-7 deficit in the sixth with 5 runs in a 13-12 loss.
John Good's perfect throw to catcher John Finley ended the game with a flourish for the Pills.
After a tough loss in game 1, you might have thought that the battle-fatigued Beards would be happy to call it a day and be back at the pub first (for a change) to get first crack at the buffet and beer.
But, no way said Klaus Kreutzberg, who is an inspiration to his grey-bearded teammates, playing hurt every day.
After a great buffet provided by our most-committed teammate Rick Wilkinson, the Beards blasted out of the starting blocks with 5 in the first, 5 in the second and 5 in the 5th and cruised to a 22--17 win. A modest Lloyd Johnston, who made two outstanding catches at critical times, said during a post-game interview that, "Yeah, we had to make a couple of adjustments as our lineup was melting like a snow cone in Phoenix with injuries. But just like every week, we battle hard every inning. By the end of the year we'll be right there."
Peter Bowers led the bearded wonders with seven hits, including a homer, and added solid defence at rover. Johnston, Neil Donaldson and Bill King provided four hits in the second game, while Bill Knight had three in the opener.
For the Pills, the first game featured the strong pitching of Bob Neilson, the continued hitting of Jim Banyard, Mike Mozewski and Bob Rose and especially the astute in-game managing by Laurence Drew.
In the second game, as the torrid heat moved in, the Blue Pills seemingly concentrated on other whims. Infielder Jym Grimshaw, mired in a mini slump, seemed to have Argo woes. A number of outfielders lost the ball in the blinding sun.
Only a well-rested Bob Rose “rose” to the occasion. The Blue Pills staved off being mercied with a late-game surge, only to fall short. Drew left the diamond with a smile, knowing that full time manager Greg Aubert, was about to cruise back to Oakville.
Red-hot Red Faces Sweep Drained Wines
On a day of splits, leave it to the last-place Fine Wines (motto: No Whines Until It's Time) to collaborate on the morning's only sweep.
The very depleted group of Winers put up a mighty fight in the first game before bowing to the red-hot Red Faces, who then showed mercy in the second game, literally.
Despite some comedic running errors by stalwart picher/catcher Rick Bradley (ie: head down, going full tilt between second and third on an infield grounder, only to find teammate Garry Schultz still standing on the bag when he finally decided to look up) and third baseman Al King spending most of the day admiring his new shoes, the Faces played solid defence and scored enough runs to win handily 16-9 in the opener.
The Wines had their chances in the opener, but again couldn't come up with the big hits when needed.
But at least they got hits and more than one run. In the second game, had it not been for Cummings driving in Dave Robertson (or a reasonable facsimile of him) in the sixth, they would have been shut out.
Despite that offensive impotence, there were a few highlights.
Cummings -- who has denied media reports that his missing players have hired the law firm of Henderson, Mott and Koopman to find out clauses in their contracts -- not only participated in five double plays but led the offence with five hits. Chris Zelkovich added four hits while Paul Kretz contributed three loud hits: a pair of doubles and a triple. Bill Stubbins drove in three runs.
Game summaries submitted by Gary Goulden, Dave Adams, John Fimnley, Roy Kitching, Tom Hunter, John Koopman Doug Ford and Chris Zelkovich. Chris also edited and compiled the final reports.
|June 21, 2018|
RED FACES LEAVE GOLDEN YEARS RED IN THE FACE BY TAKING TWO
The boys of the Rosy Visage showed no mercy in causing a sluggish group of Golds to blush by taking the double dip and passing them in the standings. Although game one had the yellow-clad club holding early leads, the Reds must have had the ‘roids kick in late as they muscled up and plated 9 runs in the last 2 innings to take the victory.
it was all Ted Talbot. The Reds scored 5 in the 6th and 4 in the 7th to capture an amazing come from behind win. Talbot led the charge leading off the 6th with a crisp single to centre and capped it off in the 7th with a towering grand slam that split the left fielders. Talbot went 3-4, while Jim Embrey, only playing for the 2nd time after an extended stay on the DL went 3-3.
In the second game, the score bounced around until the Gold bats went colder than a 1950s' prom date, allowing the Reds to escape with a 13-7 triumph. Solid defence and timely hitting right through the lineup resulted in the Reds finally living up to Manager Ford's high expectations for his crew, resulting in a convincing win. Hal Ridley, Al King and David Zywine all went 3-3 and were the offensive stars for the Faces.
The Goldies had some stellar moments, such as Terry Ronnenberg’s fine running catches, Ron Berry’s consistent pitching and Tom Sawa’s almost perfect 6-for-7 day at the plate, including an opposite field hit to foil the Yaz shift. Unfortunately, the shine on the Gold was dulled by some Bad News Bears imitations featuring numerous errors from usually sure-handed fielders, the inability to put together the patented Golden rally and the coach setting the tone by hitting into a double play right off the bat (pun intended). For good measure, Ronnenberg also threw in another of his inside-the- parkers to give the Golden fellas a short- lived glimmer of hope. In seeing the glass as half-full, however, the best news is that the team isn’t peaking too soon.
June 21, 2018
Green Gimps and Blue Pills split pair in Dutch treat
The Green Gimps and Blue Pills celebrated the summer solstice with a dazzling display of hitting, fielding and errors, resulting in a split of their two-game tilt.
With Pills manager Greg Aubert still cruising somewhere through Europe, interim manager Laurence Drew urged his team to have fun -- and they took that to heart early. The league-leading Pills scored 4 in the first inning and 5 in the third to grab what appeared to be a commanding lead.
The Gimps posted big fat zeroes in those innings and made it through the order only once. With his team down 9-0, manager Mike Kitchen reached into his bag of inspirational speeches: “On the bats, boys.”
That did the trick, and in a twinkling the deficit was shaved to 9-8. This seemed to irritate the Pills, who promptly doubled their score to put the audacious Greenies in their place.
There were no highlights worth reporting for the Gimps, with the possible exception of the line drive that hit pitcher Art Knight precisely between the ankle guard and shin guard. That one will leave a mark.
The Gimps hitters had surprisingly good stats in a losing performance. Brock Paterson was 3-for-3, while Kitchen and Steve Moses were 2-for-2 with a walk. Tom Hunter, Ed Schnurr and Doug Briscoe were all 3-for-4, and Jim Moriarty, John Stillich and Knight were each 2-for-3.
Hoping to avoid another slow start in Game 2, Kitchen again inspired his troops: “On the bats, boys”. (Hey – it worked once.) Ron Linklater was so inspired he hit a ball OVER THE FENCE for a genuine home run (not one of those sketchy “inside the park” four-baggers).
The second inning featured back-to-back line-drive catches by the Gimps’ infield duo of Steve Moses and Jim Moriarty, with a nice running (or perhaps more accurately, loping) catch by John Stillich in the third. By the end of the fourth inning the Gimps were up 7-0.
This time it was the Pills’ turn to rally, and rally they did. After six innings the Gimps held a slim 10-7 lead. The Pills came out swinging in the top of the seventh. With runners on base, Greg Sportun of the Pills blasted a long ball over the surprised heads of the Gimps’ outfielders to tie the game. With one out and a runner at first, Brock Paterson of the Gimps provided a dramatic game-ending drive to the fence.
Ed Schnurr, Doug Briscoe, Ron Linklater (with a sacrifice fly), Brock Paterson and John Stillich were each 2-for-2. Bruce Locke and Ross MacIntosh were each 2-for-3. Art Knight was 1-for-1 with a sacrifice fly.
Several stories emerged for the Pills. A strong Blue Pills team again demonstrated formidable individual skills. For example, infielder John Good nipped two runners at the plate with exceptional throws. Shortstop Mike Mozewski and outfielder Jim Banyard continued their torrid hitting. Pinch runner Jack Pang contributed key bursts. And infielder Greg Sportun hit a massive shot in the second game.
However, game two almost saw all star pitcher Bob Neilson put on the interim injury list. An errant throw by catcher John Finley almost disfigured Bob. Later, another throw by catcher Greg Sportun tested Bob’s athleticism. Seated in a nearby lawn chair, Bob’s wife, Janice, worried about her husband’s safety.
June 21, 2018
At long last, Fine Wines end losing streak in split with Grey Beards
Banners were unfurled, bells rang out and champagne corks popped Thursday morning at Millbank Park's west diamond.
Well, they did in the minds of the Fine Wines, anyway.
After struggling through most of May and the first two weeks of June, the eighth-place (it sounds so much better than last-place) Wines came out of their long losing streak with a dramatic 6-5 win over the Grey Beards.
Well, it wasn't really all that dramatic. In fact, believing that the score was tied going into the bottom of the seventh, the Wines were girding their loins for a winning rally when an official recount -- confirmed later by Price Waterhouse -- gave them the victory.
The Wines were bolstered by the return of manager Rick Cummings, who led an error-free defence with three double plays.
There should have been a fourth double play, but third baseman Chris Zelkovich inexplicably decided to attempt a one-and-half reverse gainer in the general direction of baserunner Mike Way instead of throwing to second, resulting in a cloud of dust, a 9.7 from the judges and exactly no outs.
Teammates took some solace in the news that Zelkovich was resting uncomfortably after emergency surgery to remove a substantial portion of the infield from his extremities.
The Wines also got strong pitching from Bill Stubbins and Allan Lee, along with solid defence from shortstop Bob Edmondson in their streak-ender.
Cummings also figured prominently in the Wines' big three-run fourth and drove in the winner in the sixth.
The raucous between-games celebration, which could be heard as far away as the port-a-potty in the nearby play area, may have taken the life out of the Wines, though, as they were whipped 14-2 in the mercy-shortened second game.
Cummings and Ian Carson led the Wines offence with four hits apiece on the day, highlighted by Carson's key run-scoring triple in the sixth inning of Game 1.
June 26 - Grey Beards report just received.
BETTER LATE THAN EVER
The Dusty Beards were fired up to break their losing streak last Thursday. After a brisk warm up and an encouraging pregame pep talk and a welcome back to Wadhy, our bats went limp almost immediately and we fell to the somnambulant sommeliers in a sluggish fashion by a whopping score of 6 to 5. What a barn burner. Neil did yeoman’s duty in place of an injured Rick while Klaus and Frank were the only bright lights at the plate.
It’s funny how things can turn on a dime or maybe a slice of watermelon. An apt description of an energized unshaven crew for the 2nd bill is best summed up by John Stamos when sitting in with the Beach Boys on California Girls: have mercy. We came out with all cylinders firing. Our battery was much improved and over 5 innings we managed to sour the Fine Wines. Bill, Lloyd and Charles went 3 for 3, with an HR, while everyone else chipped in with 2 hits. The Nancy Wilson Cannonball Adderly hit Mercy Mercy Me is what was in the air after we drubbed our opponents 14 to 2. Great job Neil! Honourable mention goes to our much improved base running, and Paul’s first inning whiff.
The Bud tasted much sweeter after a win like that.
Maybe Roy will return with wondrous stories of the grand koffeehaus’ on the Ringstrasse and decadent Hapsburg life.
Ray are you back to lead the base running duties?
If you haven’t, please give Mike an additional 5er for his great refreshment cooler. Klaus says that anyone who wishes to comment on his breeches is more than welcome to get him a new pair.
It should be a hot and sunny Thursday. A good day to share a beer and play a little more of Ricks music trivia.
June 21, 2018
Royals rebound to end White Hairs' winning streak
The Rusty Royals and the White Hairs split a doubleheader in a game attended by a bevy of beautiful but bored brides. ith their reputations on the line both teams played solid defensive baseball, in a well played couple of games with few errors and, of course, no mental miscues. (And if you believe that I have this magic rabbit I would like to sell to you...)
Having won their previous 3 games, the White Hairs were now on a quartet quest against the Rusty Royals. The Rusty Royals took an early lead in the first game against the White Hairs. At the end of three the Royals led 6-3 and were looking really good.
Then the wheels slowly started falling off. Having already lost more games by one run than you have fingers on one hand, the Hairs went to work. Mike Boyle, playing his first game since returning from the DL, stroked a liner to left that barely eluded the left fielder's glove. Dave Adams followed with a single sending Boyle to third. Ev Lucenti smacked a sac fly to score Boyle. Reliable Ron Louttit delivered his fourth hit of the game sending Adams to third. Larry Weber's uncatchable GWRBI fly ball scored Adams to take take the lead.
Over those same four innings the top seven hitters in the Royals lineup were collectively 1 for 9. In the seventh frame the bottom of the Royals lineup, tired by excuses made by the big bruisers at the top of the lineup, exploded with four hits by its bottom five batsmen. Don Brown, Max Crocker, Doug Wingrove and Terry Stroud all reached base, and three of them scored, to pull with in one run.
Things looked bright as the lineup turned over to the top with just one out and a runner on base. Alas Crocker's leading hitters failed to live up to the responsibility accorded to those who hit at the top of the lineup. The game ended with the White Hairs pulling out 10-9 victory.
Pitcher Bert Therrien pitched for the win and helped himself with a pair of runs and 3 hits. Bob Oliver, Bill Johnson, and Cubby the Entertainer combined for 6 hits and 4 runs.
With their fourth win in a row in the books, the heady White Hairs were confident they could keep it up for a team record fifth time. Ahem, these guys aren't teenagers any more. There was no mob-celebration at the Whites’ bench because as one of the Hairs stated, "We might get hurt."
The score sheet for the second contest compressed the 7-inning game into 4 innings. Three innings simply vanished. Therefore, your humble reporter has to give you the Readers Digest Condensed version of the game.
Between games the Rusty Royal bottom of the order appropriately chastised the top of the order. Apprised of their responsibilities in the second game the top of the Rusty Royal order came throughEvery single Rusty Royal had at least one hit in this game. Don Brown was 3 for 3, and Mac Macaulay, Mike Horner, Howard Mott and Doug Wingrove were all 2 for 3. Mott roved all over the infield to make a couple of nifty catches to put the game away . Howard Mott is now rounding into form, two weeks removed from his trip to the British Isles and his consequent scotch whiskey overdose.
The Hairs scored one run in the first inning and somewhere in the middle innings, scored 2 more. Lucenti notched 2 hits and scored once, Jeff Morton had a pair of RBIs, and along with Adams shared the Hairs' other 2 runs in a 9-3 streak-breaking loss to the Royals.
Manager Johnson predicts the beginning of another streak next week. Hopefully he means on the ball diamond
Royals’ Coach Crocker will have some explaining to do to the press for the Rusty Royal performance on June 21. Most coaches put their leading hitters at the top of the order....
June 14, 2018
HAIRS TRIM BEARDS
At the mid-point of the season, the White Hairs are turning their season around. For the first time this season, the White Hairs were victorious in both halves of a double dip. After scoring only one run in the first inning of the first game, the Hairs pulled away from the Grey Beards scoring 5 runs in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th innings for a 16-7 lead.
But, then suddenly, the Hairs' bats became as Cold as Ice. The Beards took advantage of this glacial meltdown and nickled and dimed their way back to be down by only 4 heading into the bottom of the 7th Alas the Whites’ defense came through, especially on the hot corner and held the Beardies scoreless. hanging on to win 16-12.
Providers of power for the White Hairs' offence were Bert Therrien with 5 singles and 3 runs. Cubby "The Entertainer" Hubert donated 4 hits and 3 runs. Jeff Morton, Larry Weber, and Manager Bill Johnson combined for 10 hits and 6 RBIs. Pitcher John Vinnai helped his own cause with 2 hits, 2 walks and 3 runs.
Between games, the Grey Beards picked themselves up, feasted on Rick Wilkinson’s fruit basket, nursed their limbs and realized they missed their pre- game strategy session and blamed their loss on that.
With spirits up, they generated a little more offence and feistiness to keep them close through the 2nd game. In order to speed up the game, so they wouldn’t miss the anticipated buffet, the teams went to a short count. That didn’t help. Everyone still got to the bar late!
The second game began with the White Hairs scoring a merciful 10 runs in the first two innings to take a 10-4 lead. Over the next 3 innings the Hairs could only push 4 more runs across the plate, and by the bottom of the 6th the Hairs found themselves on the other side of a 16-14 score.
Following a Bob Oliver walk (his second of the game), Dave Adams smacked a two-strike pitch to the deepest part of the infield and as the ball meandered toward the outfield fence, Adams scampered around the bases with a game-tying two-run homer. Three more runs would follow, giving the Hairs another 5 spot and a 19-16 lead.
The Beards were not able to mount any resemblance of a rally in the top of the 7th and the Hairs giddily celebrated their third consecutive win.
White Hairs feasting at the plate were Jeff "Marvel" Morton who accumulated 7 RBIs and 4 runs. His supporting cast of Weber, Therrien, and Ev Lucenti collected 8 hits and 7 runs. Bob George parlayed his two walks into a pair of runs.
Septuagenarian hurler John Vinnai pitched 13 innings under windy conditions for the victories, with Bert "The Hurt" Therrien pitching the 14th inning for his first save of the season.
Kudos to Beards’ Paul Hunter, Mike Way and Bill Ballagh for multiple hits and to Neil Donaldson who came on in latter relief and pitched 2 scoreless innings with 2 K’s.
Hopefully vacationing Greys’ Roy Kitching, Ray Grisold and Awadh Jaggernath were basking and quaffing under clear skies.
As an aside, after the game, Mike Way was at the grocery store buying a big bottle of Tide plus with an additional stain remover. We’ll see how that works! And while we are on the pants front, Klaus Kreutzberg appeared with grey trousers this week, matching most of his team mates hair (well maybe not Manager Johnston’s) ..... and.......with a tear in the same place as his black ones. When queried he said consistency is important. You got to get down and dusty to make that play. The Grey Beards’ motto for next week.
SLUGFEST LEADS TO SPLIT AT MILLBANK EAST
Gimps Streak Ends but Now 500.
Reds “D” Needs an About Face
With the wind in his face Art Knight continued his streak of seven games without a walk, leading the Gimps to their seventh straight win.
Defence continues to be the Achilles heal of offensive powerhouse Red Faces. When you consistently score 17 runs, the outcome should normally be better. Scoring 5 in the top of 1st and then quickly dispensing the Gimps in order in their first at bat, the day looked promising. Unfortunately, that’s where it all ended in Game One. With hurricane force winds creating havoc catching the ball a challenging event for everyone and even harder for the Faces, the Gimps put up 5,4,5,5 in innings 2 thru 5, which was enough to hold off the Faces. The Gimps hung on to a 19 -17 win.
For the Reds in a losing cause, three guys were 3 for 3: Don Evans, Hal Ridley and Don Yaschyshyn.
Game two was much of the same for the out fielders, and Gimps’ hurler Knight finally lost his battle with Mother Nature and finally lost his string of no walk games.
The never give up Faces once again had difficult catching the ball, but this time their bats were able to overcome the winds and the Gimps.
After coughing up a 5 run lead in the top of the 7th, it took a clutch RBI single by George Merrick to score sockless Manager Ford from 2nd and claim the morale boosting walk off victory. Al King, reeling from the tortured berating he took from his team mates over striking out in the first game led the Faces in Game Two going 4-4. Paul Black 4-4 and Al Stokes 3-3 were also perfect.
Green leaders on the day included Manager Kitchen at 5 for 6 with a walk and a IPHR, Steve Vitella 5 for 6,
John Stillich5 for 6, Ron Linklater 5 for 6 and a walk, Peter Dovey 5 for 6, and Jim Moriarty and Steve Moses at 4 for 6.
Between games, Don Evans shared a home video exhibiting the rigorous exercise routine he goes through each day to keep his well tuned body in excellent shape.
RUSTY ROYALS & GOLDEN YEARS SPLIT
Egregious Blunder Gifts Royals with a Game Two Win
Thursday's game was a salvatory experience for both the Rusty Royals and the Golden Years. Now we all know what a dustbowl on a hot day looks and feels like.
The Royals came out strong early in Game One plating three runs in the first inning. Unfortunately, they continued their poor base-running and notwithstanding scoring five runs in the fifth inning and another five runs in the sixth inning, were unable to match the Golden Years who came away with a 15-14 victory.
It is curious, as generally speaking the physical skills decline before the mental ones. The Rusty Royals are proving the opposite. To a man they are 15 finely chiseled athletes (Who writes this stuff?). Unfortunately, they often make baseball decisions on the base-paths that are not sound. In both games the Golds were forerunners throughout taking early leads but often leaving important runs on the bases. The Royals chipped away in Game One but a late wake-up by the Golden Oldies preserved their win by a score of 15-14.
There were high notes in the game for the Rusty Royals: Terry Stroud (Hello Frances) was two for two and by the end of the game was leading the Oakville Masters Slo-pitch batting average race, with an average of 1.000. Mac McCauley hit two triples, and Mike Horner drove in four runs. Glenn Crane and Don Brown were both perfect 3 for 3's. Defensively? Well let's just say that they are testing Mac McCauley's patience.
Game 2 took on a similar character with the Goldies jumping out quickly but a few miscalculations help lubricate the Rustys and kept them ever hopeful. The Royals also experienced some minor iron oxidation issues but recovered in time thanks to some timely hitting and a donation from the Goldies.
Now it should be pointed out to all those with aging memory loss that in peewee or bantam ball we were told that if the bases are loaded there's one place to which you must never hit a ground ball.... 3rd base. However, with the bases jacked and 2 out in the bottom of the 6th inning that cardinal rule was ignored by an ambitious member of the imperial team much to coach Crocker's continued chagrin. Wait for it....... Cardinal rule number two- if you're playing 3rd base in that situation, just step on the bag and head for the bench. Sin # 2, forgotten rule, fumbled throw to first, three runs scored, Game 2 to the Royalites 19-18. More beer tears for the Golden boys.
A few of the bright spots for the tarnished Golds included perfect 6 for 6 hitting by chucker Ron Berry and Mr. Speedy Jim Fenner who tossed in a 4 bagger for good measure. Seven hits in 8 A.B.'s for Tom Sawa. And, of course, a ho-hum routine day of 7 hits for John Manderson who, not wanting to be outdone by his senior, the septuagenarian Jimmy Fenner, cranked out two inside the park home runs. Mike Albert and Ty Crawford tossed in 5 timely hits each for the cause.
Highlights at the stick were Glenn Crane who hit two home runs, Mac McCauley who hit two triples, and Max Crocker who was two for two plus a walk. Two close and fun games with great pitching by both hurlers in the gusting wind. Terry Stroud's batting average dropped an astounding 250 points in the second game. He is now hitting 750 on the season.
Reports compiled from submissions from: John Finley, Chris Zelkovich, Gary Goulden, Michael Kitchen, Charles Leskun, Doug Ford, John /aikman and Dave Adams.
JUNE 7, 2018
May 31, 2018
AFTER HITTING BOTTOM, GIMPS’ STOCK ON THE RISE
Green Team has 4 Game Win Streak
After being swept last week, but having a shortage of players as an excuse, the Fine Wines came out of the dugout with a full roster (minus one) and hearts full of hope.
Sadly, the hope disappeared faster than the beer at the Pipes and Taps. The Wines were swept again and are considering changing their logo from a wine glass to a dustpan.
On the other side of the diamond, in the last two weeks the Green Gimps have risen faster than the Dow Jones after a Trump tax break.
In Game One against the souring Wines, the revived Gimps put on a defensive display that was tighter than a cow’s butt during fly season. Befuddled by the masterful pitching of the Gimps’ Art Knight (who did not issue a walk during both games), the Fine Wines were held runless for the first four innings of Game 1.
The Wines finally found their bats in the top of the fifth and threatened to tie or take the lead. But, with 2 runs in and 2 runners on base, shortstop Jim Moriarty of the Gimps dashed the Wines’ hopes by snagging a line drive and making a nice running catch on a popup.
Shaken by the close call, the Gimps scored 5 in the bottom of the inning to give themselves some breathing room. Final score: Gimps 11, Wines 3. Ed Schnurr, Peter Dovey, Ross Macintosh, and Brighton’s perennial spare Paul Lemmon were all perfect at the plate for the Gimps, and Steve Vitella was 2-3.
The Wine bats weren't working at all in Game One, with the only highlight being a 50-foot double by Rick Martin.
In Game Two, the Gimps displayed their newfound swagger by scoring 5 runs in the first and 3 more in the second, including a triple by Peter Dovey. Jim Moriarty continued to flash the leather at shortstop, accounting for all 3 outs in the second inning. The Wines roared back with 5 runs in the 4th, and after five innings were only trailing by 4. Once again, the Gimps found their gumption and scored 4 in the 6th and 4 more in the 7th to put it out of reach. Final score: Gimps 21, Wines 13.
Jim Moriarty was 4-4, Tom Hunter was 3-3 with a walk, Michael Kitchen was 2-2 with two walks (really!), Peter Dovey was 2-2 with a SAC, Bruce Locke was 2-3 with a walk and Ron Linklater, Dave George and Paul Lemmon were each 3-4. Injury report – John Aikman of the Wines used his shoulder to field a hot grounder and left the game in search of ice and sympathy. Dave George of the Gimps hurt his finger on a grounder, but it’s not worth mentioning.
For the Wines, the bats came alive in the second game, but unfortunately the gloves took the game off in the 21-13 loss. Not to say there weren't any highlights.
Fans (both of them) are still talking about the defensive work of first baseman Dave Robertson and second sacker Brian Sheridan. Robertson stumbled to his right to snare a hot grounder, then flipped it to Sheridan, who outshuffled the baserunner to the first-base bag. It was sheer poetry in slow motion.
Ian Carson led the Wines offence with six hits on the day, while Paul Kretz and Chris Zelkovich had five apiece. After a rare two-strikeout performance in Game 1, Erik Andersen redeemed himself with three hits and two RBIs in the second game.
Golden Years Maintain Tenuous Hold On 3RD Place
Grey Beards Rally to Create an Unsatisfactory Split
The Facially Hirsute (Ed. Note: Wordsmith Goulden has done it again!) Greys stymied the hopes of the Golden boys by staging rallies in the final innings of both games to gain one win and one moral victory in their doubleheader.
The Gold team were in total control of Game One by holding the Beards to 4 runs through the first 5 innings. The Grey bats came alive in the final 2 innings with 8 runs but their hopes were shattered by a Gold 6 spot to preserve the win 19-11. It seems that not even Beards’ Rick Wilkinson's gourmet breakfast could help put out the fire of “no hittie no catchie” baseball again on Thursday. Grey Manager Lloyd Johnston (looking for anything to avoid last week’s dismal performance against the Royals) was seen at the beginning of the game in a closed-door (out-house) meeting with the Gold’s Goulden trying to negotiate a deal of some type. But Goulden would have none of whatever he was offering and alas there were no shining stars in Grey-land this game!
Who-who-who let the dogs out???!!! Maybe the barking from Wilky on the mound turned the Grey old hounds into Grey wolves as Game 2 was a reverse of Game One. The earlier dormant sticks of the Greys peppered the ball for an early 11-4 lead as they opened the game with a 4-spot,4 in the 3rd,4 in the 4th. However, the never say die Golds kept chipping away and finally tied the game at the end of the fifth. Time and heat constraints reduced the second game to 6 innings and alas the Grey gents plated 7 to the Golds 1 in the final frame giving them the 21-15 victory.
An intemperate 4 letter outburst by a player during the game created heart palpitations at the Parochial School across the street from the diamond creating anxiety that the game could be halted by resultant thunder and lightning but the battered and threadbare tarp over the Gold dugout soothed over any concerns. We are not sure if Donald Trump will pass comment on it.
Leading the Greys in the overdue hit fest were Frank Accomando and Neil Donaldson at 3 for 3, Charles Leskun - 2 for 3 including an inside the parker and scoring 3 and Roy Kitching going 3 for 3 ncluding 2 doubles and a 3 run triple. Mike Way a game ending hi-lite reel catch
For the Golden guys on the day, a subtly superb performance by Tom Gorman resulted in 8 hard hit balls in 8 at bats accompanied by 4 runs and copious ribbies, a normal day at the park for the assistant coach.
John Manderson maintained his hot batting average and also chugged around the bases with an inside-the-parker. Terry Ronnenberg reliably chipped in with 7 hits and Mike Albert and Gary Goulden
each went 6 for 7. The coach hit a rare and surprising long ball to the fence and was able to Forest Gump his way to at least second base.
BLUE PILLS POP INTO SOLE POSSESSION of 1ST WITH SWEEP OF VERY RUSTY ROYALS
What a Difference a Week Makes as Royals Struggle
“Somewhere in this favoured land, the sun is shining bright
the band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light,
and somewhere men are laughing and somewhere children shout.
But there is no joy for Rusty Royals, cause they all got out...”
It is hard to know what happened. It could have been Mac Macaulay’s wife showing up (probably because she didn’t believe he put one out of the park last week) and the guys getting nervous playing baseball in front of a beautiful woman, or maybe it was the League’s Commissioner coming by and the guys getting worried about possible drug tests and league suspensions. We don't know. We do know the Rusty Royals lost Game One 18 - 5 and Game Two 14 -2.
In Game One, the Blue Pills were blanked in the opening two innings. The Royals also started slowly but did manage to score 2 runs in the bottom of the 2nd inning to take an early lead and then that was pretty well all she wrote for the high flying Rusty boys. The Pills knotted the score in the bottom half and then pounded out 25 hits in the second half of the game registering 4 runs in each of the last four frames. This was combined with stellar defence that yielded only 3 more Royal runs the rest of the game.
The hitting stars for the Pills were Jack Pang (3 for 3) and John Good, Mike Mozewsky, Laurence Drew, Aarne Kartna & Jym Grimshaw who all went 3 for 4. Despite the wind, Bob Neilson pitched a gem keeping the vaunted Royal offense at bay.
In Game Two, the Pills were once again too much for the Royals to swallow as they were mercied after 5 innings. They pounded out 21 hits in just 27 at bats for a lofty 778 team batting average. The defence was solid & Bob Neilson pitched masterfully.
The Pills scored 5 runs in each of the first two innings and held the demoralized Royals to 2 runs in the 2nd inning. The Royals couldn't muster any further offense the rest of the way and were put out of their misery when the Pills scored 3 in the bottom of the 5th for the win.
Leading the Pills, now solidly in first place, in Game Two were Jim Banyard, John Good, Bob Neilson, Greg Aubert, Bob Rose, Jym Grimshaw, Phil Dechene & John Finley who were all perfect at the plate. The day wasn’t completely perfect however for Mr. Banyard as his beloved Ti-Cats continued in their miserable losing ways later in the evening.
The best Rusty Royal players on Thursday were Howard Mott, Al Baskett and Terry Stroud - none of whom played in the game. All Rusty Royals contributed equally to the cause. Every Rusty Royal made an error or struck out. None of the Blue Pills 32 runs on the day were earned.
Amidst the sea of under-performing all-stars on the Rusty Royal squad there were a few limited bright lights. Mike Horner made some nice catches in the outfield and actually had two RBIs on the day, and in Game One Max Crocker was actually 1 for 1 at the plate. Yes - he had that few at bats...
To be fair it was the Rusty Royals infield that made its outfield work by letting every ball through the infield so the outfield had a chance to make a play.
Manager Crocker was silent; but his infielders looked very nervous as Crocker greeted some players from 2017 at the bench near the end of the second game. Rumours were rampant about a huge shakeup of the Royals’ infield from 1st to 3rd with the sudden emergence of past OMMSPL stars Hando Told, Rae Little, Paul Bagnarol and Doug Wheeler all looking game ready.
Now that the Rusty Royals have lulled the Blue Pills into a false sense of overconfidence the Rusty Royals are confident that the next match will have a very different result
WHITES and REDS SPLIT A PAIR
With but a solo win to their credit, the White Hairs began the day hoping to double or even triple their season total.
In the first game the Hairs exploded, scoring 5 runs, to take a lead they would never relinquish. This game gave credence to the phrase, "Things come in threes." Jeff Morton was on fire as he batted for the trifecta: 3 triples, 3 runs, 3 RBIs. Joining in with three-hits and three runs of their own were Paul Ritchie, and Ev Lucenti. The always reliable Larry Weber chalked up a three-hit game.
The Hairs defense was able to shut down the potent Red Face offence in the bottom of 7th and preserve a 14-11 win and record their second win of the season.
The Red Faces continue to pound the ball, but catching it remains Manager Ford’s biggest challenge in turning around the Big Red Machine. Coach Auld, out this week on the one-day DL, was overheard wondering out aloud if his team mates’ husbands play ball too?
Paul Black, Don Yasychyn and Garry Shultz led the losing charge by all going 3/3.
In the second game, a hard fought battle, the Hairs were always playing Catch-up. Trailing for the first 4 innings, the boys in white were finally able to knot the score at 13 in the 5th inning when the Hairs offence was able to exploit the Red defense like light through a prism and put 5 runs on the board. Keeping to the 2018 Reds motto, “if you can’t hold them, you have got to outscore them”, and out score them they did In the top of the 7th. The Big Red Machine exploded for 6 runs. While the White Hairs answered back scoring 4, the final score was19-17 for the Reds.
Reds’ Don Yasychyn, Doug Ford and Paul Black were perfect at the plate, all going (4/4)
Bert Therrien was the big banger for the White Hairs, whose 3 hits included a solo homerun. New guy Ron Louttit smacked a triple and scored a pair. Rookie Vince Moffat combined with Morton, Lucenti, and Ritchie for 8 hits and 9 runs.
Back at the bar, Manager Bill Johnson challenged his team to once again double their win total for the season by winning both games of the twin spin next Thursday.
Reports compiled thanks to submissions from Greg Aubert, Gary Goulden, Tom Hunter, Roy Kitching, Doug Ford, John Koopman and Dave Adams.
Addendum to May 24 Game Report
TRUMP CLAIMS HOME RUN FAKE NEWS
May 27, 2018
We stand corrected. Our May 24 game summary reported a home run by Royals’ rookie Glenn Crane. We have since received a tweet from Donald Trump claiming that was fake news. He apparently attended the Royals - Beards game last Thursday and according to him, with crowds larger the OMMSPL has ever seen.
Trump's tweet, in part. read: “My friend Gregg Macaulay, a former Atlantian and a great friend of mine, has been robbed of a homerun by some guy named Crane. I was there and saw Macaulay put it out of the park. It was out of the park. The only reason I can offer as to the mix up is that Macaulay’s lightening speed around the bases confused everyone”
Checking out this claim with Rusty Royals’ Manager Max Crocker proved fruitless as he looked puzzled and replied: “Who’s Crane and who’s Macaulay?”
ALL “BLUE” IN 1RST AS ROYALS & PILLS JUMP AHEAD OF OTHERS
Greys Trip Over Their Beards in Error-filled Game with Not So Rusty Royals
Stroud Wins OMMSPL’s Most Entertaining Event of the Day Award
The Rusty Royals were ready for an epic battle with the Grey Beards on Thursday morning. Unfortunately, early in the first game Grey Beard coach Lloyd Johnston was forced to leave the game due to a hip injury. The Grey Beards, apparently fraught with concern, unable to concentrate on the game,
In a gesture of Christian solidarity, the Grey Beards gave the Rusty Royals four outs in each inning of the two-game set. In the first game, which the Royals won 21-8, Barny Henderson, Howard Mott, Joe Parisiani and Rick Wilcox were all a perfect 4 for 4.
Later at the bar, Commander in Chief Lloyd Johnston's banged-up Beards were trying to come up with adjectives to describe their 19-8 loss this day. There were none that even came close. Everything went right for the first place Royals and anything that could go wrong for the Grey guys did. From routine plays that were misplayed to dropped cans of corn -- it was uuuugly!
In the second game the Royals bats continued to pound as they won 21-9 and Grey Beard Christian solidarity was answered with Rusty Royal's calling the game on the mercy rule. The Royal’s Al Baskett was a perfect three for three and his defensive ballet remains entertaining. Ian Schell provided Mac McCaulay with a little respite from mound
duties, and Glenn Crane hit a massive home-run out of the park. They are still looking for the ball; although Crane promised to keep an eye open for it on the way back to Kitchener. In this game Henderson was actually out once.
On the base paths Larry Adler put in a very unique performance picking up a couple of extra bases which even included an bench cheering slide into 3rd base. Barny Henderson (he had a day!) put it into overdrive to stay ahead of a charging Glenn Crane on an extra base hit and young Mike Horner had 5 RBIs for the day. Other Royals had even more RBIs but we won't mention it as we don't want to going to their heads.
From the Beard’s perspective, this game was even worse, thankfully getting mercied 21-9 in the 6th.
The only bright spots on the day for the Grey Beards were 79-year old Neil Donaldson (looking more like Neil Armstrong) launching 6 for 6 balls into space and Awadh Jaggernath hitting 4 for 6 showing again the bottom of the order are showing up every day. Injured Manager Johnston was heard saying, “Well I'm glad we got that out of our system”. Back to the drawing board.
Finally, we must not forget to report the most entertaining event of the day. Royals’ Terry Stroud, who is anxious to come off the DL, (must mention this as his wife Frances reads these reports) provided strong support from the bench and continued to wonder if his first-place team misses him. Just to demonstrate his keen interest and willingness to do anything for his league -leading team, Stroud raced out of the park and headed to the bar. He wanted to be the first there to set things up for the celebration but alas things didn’t quite work out that way. First to arrive from any team, Stroud picked out the best patio table and waited and waited and waited. But no one showed up to FIONN MACCOOL’S. Stroud finally managed to sheepishly join his team mates at Pipes & Taps and
bravely narrate his adventure.
Blue Pills keep Pace with the Royals with two W’s against the Red Faces.
Never Say Die Red Faces Come Up One Run Short in First of two Losses to Pills.
The Blue Pills stayed even with the league leading Royals by stiffing the Red Faces in a double header at Glenashton East. In Game One the Pills started slowly going down 1-2-3 in the 1st inning. The Red Faces then took an early lead with four consecutive two - out hits to score two runs in their half of the inning. The Blue Pills bounced back in the 2nd with the bottom half of the order rising to the occasion and producing 5 hits in a row leading to a five- run inning. The resilient Reds then turned it into a seesaw battle scoring another two runs making the score 5 - 4 in favour of the Blue Pills after 2 innings.
The Pills then scored four more times in the 3rd but held the Red guys to just two runs again.
The Pills outscored the Reds 2 - 1 in the 4th inning making the score 11 - 7. But the Red Faces then held the Pills to two runs in the 5th while scoring four of their own to tighten the game to 13 - 11 Pills. The two teams traded single runs in the 6th.
The Pills then smashed out 5 hits in the top of the 7th which translated to 4 runs and a seemingly insurmountable lead. However, unphased by being down by 6 going into the bottom of the 7th the Faces, led by a multi run scoring triple off the bat of slugger Andy McMackin put the tying run within 65 feet of home plate with the Pills back on their heels and gasping for air. But McMackin was left stranded after a ground out and the Mighty Reds were left with their fourth one run loss of the season!
The Blue Pills pounded out 30 hits led by Bob Rose, Bob Neilson and Aarne Kartna,who were all perfect at the plate. Kartna legged out a triple, bringing back fond super star memories of 50 years ago.
George Merrick (4 for 4) and Hal Ridley (3 for 3) were the stars for the Reds at the plate.
After long first game, the Managers agreed to start the batters with a 1 & 1 count for the nightcap. The Red Faces started slowly scoring only once in the first 3 innings. Meanwhile the Pills went down 1-2-3 in the 1st but tallied five times in the second & once in the 3rd taking a 6-1 lead. The Reds scored four times in the 4th & held the Pills to a single run knotting the score at 7 - 7.
Looking like they were running out of gas, the Reds failed to score in the final 3 innings whereas the Blue guys scored five times in each of their last two at bats for the victory.
In the first real heat of the year. with injuries mounting and key players away, the Pills clearly took advantage of the depleted Red Faces, handing them their first loss of the season that was by more than one run.
Blue’s Bob Neilson pitched masterfully in relief of Laurence Drew who had to leave the game after injuring his hip while fielding a softly hit grounder up the middle.
The Blue Pills hitting stars for Game 2 were Neilson, Rose, John Finley, Jack Pang & Greg Aubert who were all perfect at the plate.
For the Reds, Hal Ridley was again a force at the plate, going 2 for 3. Don Evans playing through enormous pain (in his neck) still managed to be one of Reds’ most prolific sluggers going 2 for 3. The Faces all agree their current plight is just the starting point for a winning trajectory, similar to the strategy used by coach Ford last year when he led them to the 2017 OMMSDPL championship!
BATTLE FOR THE BASEMENT
Whites Hairs Hit Hard by Injuries & the Green Gimps
The games between the White Hairs with one win this season, and the Green Gimps with no wins, would decide who would exit the cellar and who will dwell in the crawl space.
And it was the Green Gimps who scratched and clawed their way out of the basement with two dramatic wins over the shell-shocked White Hairs. “We’re in uncharted waters” quipped Gimps manager Michael Kitchen as the Gimps wasted no time demonstrating their power at the plate. They pounded out a mitt-full of hits, resulting in an abundance of runs, scoring 5 in the first, 5 in the second, 4 in the third,
But the White Hairs battled back and scored 7 runs in the next two innings. However, in the top of the 6th Manager Kitchen led by example, launching one to the fence and easily rounding the bases for an IPHR (his second of the game). The next batter, Ron Linklater, sought to replicate the performance but managed only a lowly triple. Next up was Jim Moriarty, who promptly hit an IPHR to show Linklater how it’s done.
Top producers for the Hairs were Dave Adams who went 3 for 3 and scored a pair (now claiming he was told he must grow a pair), Paul Ritchie who went 3 for 3 including a triple, and Bert Therrien with a single, triple and a run scored. Despite the efforts of these three amigos and their teammates, the White Hairs were mercied 25-12 after 6 innings.
The second game was a lot closer as the Hairs, despite being short 5 original team members, led the game for 5 of the first 6 innings. The White Hairs vowed to get even, not mad. (Okay, maybe a little mad.) As home team the Gimps took the field for Game 2. Infielder Ron Linklater started the inning with an impressive shoestring catch – impressive that he was able to bend over to that extent. Veteran Ev Lucenti of the White Hairs then hit a hot comebacker directly at Gimps’ pitcher Art Knight, who calmly snagged it while diving for cover behind the screen. Incidentally, Art was money for the Gimps in both games, as usual.
But after four innings it looked like the Hairs were well on their way to vengeance, leading 13-8, but their lead was whittled down to a precarious two runs entering the bottom of the 7th. Unfortunately for the receding Hairs, the last inning is the only one that matters.
The top of the Gimps’ lineup went to work and quickly put the White Hairs out of their misery scoring 3 in the bottom of the 7th to win 16-15. The victory was capped off by a screaming liner down the third base line by Bruce Locke to drive in the winning run.
Most of the Gimps batters had a good day at the plate, including Steve Vitella who was a perfect 6-6 for the day, with one walk.
Offensively the Hairs got 3 hit performances from Paul Ritchie, Larry Weber, Cubby Hubert, and new-sub guy Ian. Manager Bill Johnson made his presence known, returning from DL, with a couple of hits and runs. Ev Lucenti scored twice and the other new-sub guy Tom had two hits (including a triple) and scored a pair.
In an attempt to keep his White Hairs from “falling out” of contention, Manager Johnson will be bringing a bucket of Rogaine to next week’s matches.
WINES HAVE TOO MANY A.W.O.L. PLAYERS & LOSE TWO TO THE GOLDS
Manager Rick Cummings had plenty to w(h)ine about as five regulars (including ace reporter Chris Zelkovich) were missing Thursday and they dropped a doubleheader to the quietly surging Gold team. The Golden boys also had two big bats away but a solid team effort let them handle the short-staffed Oenophiles (Ed. note: Only Goulden would submit a word like this) relatively easily.
The Gold team started slowly and didn't score in the initial inning for the first time this year. They then got back on track with three - 5 run innings to put away the opponents in five by a score of 15-3 which meant less time in the heat.
Game Two however was a sleeper, neither team getting untracked and a tie score after six at 8 runs apiece. Finally, the thought of an early bar arrival and two free jugs on a hot day was a good motivator and boosted the Golden guys to knock out a quick 5 and finish off the opponents 13-8.
The increasingly reliable Tom Sawa was on base for all 6 of his at bats and used his off-field skills to work on his injured knee in order to be able to finish the games. The veteran Ty Crawford also reached base during each of his 5 at bats and turned a sure triple into a surprise double. The manager tried a new strategy of closing his eyes and wailing wildly which also resulted in a lucky 5 for 5 day.
The speedy Terry Ronnenberg did his best impression of a freight train and easily scored an inside the park 4 bagger. Don Moseley-Williams tried protecting a very sore tennis elbow to no avail as the Maroon clad gents kept hitting the ball at him which he defended by catching everything in his territory. Tom Gorman and Mike Albert each contributed 4 solid hits to the cause.
Things continue to get tougher for the Golds however as the smarting Greys are lurking in the wings for next week.
Reports compiled thanks to submissions from Greg Aubert, Gary Goulden, Tom Hunter, Roy Kitching, Doug Ford, John Koopman and Dave Adams.
These reports were compiled and edited by mostly unmedicated people
May 17, 2018
REDS & WINES SPLIT IN BATTLE ‘TIL THE FINAL ERROR
Wines’ Skipper Cummings’ Job Safe for Another Week
It was a day for walk-off victories when the Red Faces met the Fine Wines at Millbank Park. Two close games, both won by the home team in the bottom of the 7th—not classic defensive games. Riding the pitching of John Gow, the Wines looked poised to come back from last week's painful spanking at the hands of the Rusty Royals. Run-scoring hits by Rick Martin and Ian Carson in the top of the sixth brought them into a 6-6 tie with the other red guys.
But they couldn't push across another run after that and took their third straight loss when the Faces scored the winner in the bottom of the seventh.
With the score still knotted 6-6 going into the bottom of the 7th, Coach Doug Ford (who took time off from his campaign) was running for Ace pitcher Hal Ridley who had singled sharply to right to kick off the inning. Ted Talbot, missing during the first 5 innings due to another commitment, hit a timely double. scoring Ford from first to clinch the game. Ford and George Merrick were each a perfect 3 for 3 while Al King and Al Stokes (who continued to mesmerize with timely hitting) went
2 for 3.
Martin, Carson, John Aikman and Dave Robertson all had two hits apiece for the Wines, who got their revenge in the second game.
With John Gow having departed to attend his mother's funeral, Brian Sheridan and Allan Lee kept the game close with some strong pitching. In fact, the ball Lee used to strike out the first batter he faced is being sent to the Hall of Fame as this is being written.
Trailing 8-5 in the sixth, the Wines rallied for three runs thanks to an error and Sheridan's two-run single.
But things looked dark after the Faces scored twice in the top of the seventh, bringing the possibility of a fourth straight loss even closer and starting talk in the dugout that a possible management change was in order. Reds were in fact up 10-8 going into the bottom of the 7th.
But after Super Sub “Redd” (Now White) Reid drove in a run with a triple in the home half, the Wines tied it when Martin reached on an error.
That set the stage for Chris Zelkovich, who hit one to the fence in left field to drive in the winner and save Rick Cummings' job.
Sheridan led the Wines offence with three hits, while Reid, Cummings,
Aikman, Jim Barton and Zelkovich had two apiece.
Defence throughout the game was not been stellar on either side, but the following exemplifies and typifies when things go bad, they really go bad. Shortstop Paul Black ran back to catch a pop up, only to have the ball hit him in the back of the head. According to the team, The team has salvaged the ball for the practice bag. Leading the Reds at bat were Dave Zywine, Hal Ridley, Andy McMackin, George Merrick, Paul Black and Doug Ford all went 2 for 3.
ROYALS TAKE OVER FIRST
Gimps Still Looking for First Win of Season
The Rusty Royals were anything but, downing the Gimps in a 7-6 squeaker in Game 1 but a more convincing 13-6 in Game for a capture of first place, at least for one week.
The first game was a tight defensive battle with great pitching from Mac McAuley for the Rusty Royals and the Dark (Art) Knight for the Green Gimps. The Rusty Royals infield reminded the manifold spectators of the old Tinkers to Evers to Chance combination. Nothing passed by a sober Joe Parisiani at SS an
d an always perfectly positioned "master of the shift" Howard Mott at Rover. Doug Wingrove threw out a particularly gimpy Green Gimp at first...from deep right field. With no woman spectators present, and none passing by (do these women know great and approachable athletes are playing ball so close to their homes?) bats for both teams lacked testosterone.
The Gimps were up 6-5 after 5 innings, but the Royals scored two in the top of the 6th to retake the lead. The tension was palpable in the 7th. In the top half the Royals had two men on base with nobody out. The Gimps’ first baseman Steve Vitella fielded a hot grounder, tagged out the startled runner and stepped on the bag for a nice unassisted double play. The Royals were retired shortly afterwards without scoring a run, and the Gimps could taste an impending walk-off victory. In the bottom half, with two men on base the Gimps hit a rocket down the first base line which brought the fans (sorry, fan) screaming to their (his) feet. Fortunately for the nervous Royals, it landed foul by inches. Shortly afterwards the Gimps limped back to their dugout to regroup for Game 2.
Barnaby Henderson BA, JD, LLB scored twice for the Rusty Royals as did Joe Parisani. Max Crocker coached brilliantly and ensured 11 men were always on the field.
Batting highlights for the Gimps - Tom Hunter was 4-4 and each of Bruce Locke, Doug Briscoe, Michael Kitchen, Ron Linklater and Jim Moriarty was 2 for 3.
After the heartbreaker of Game One, the Gimps spirit seem to be broken for the nightcap. The Rusty Royals took an early lead on the back of RBI's from svelte athletes like Don Brown, Mike Horner and Ian Schell. Pitcher Mac McAuley contributed two runs to his own cause. Ten different Rusty Royals circled the bases, and all 13 Rusty Royals had a hit in a great team effort. The final score was a resounding 13-4 demolition of the gimpy guys. Despite continuing the winless streak, there were some hi-lights for the Green Gimps as Manager Kitchen made a nice running catch. Brock Paterson was 3-3, Tom Hunter was 2-2 and each of Doug Briscoe and Peter Dovey was 2-3.
Over both games Green’s hurler Art Knight struck out four batters and didn’t allow a walk.
Post-game Royals’ Rick Wilcox’s new glove was impounded by the umpire and sent to the Commissioner for examination. The glove is 72 inches long…bushel baskets are smaller. The glove is so long that by merely reaching his hand out he gains another 6 feet of extension. Finding the ball after a catch is however an issue.
GREY- BLUE SPLIT
Beards First Team to Down Pills
In Game One, the Grey Beards, still smarting from losing last week’s double header, came out on a mission to beat the only OMMSPL undefeated team …and they did just that.
The Grey Beards started quickly scoring 5 runs in the 1st. The Blue Pills responded by scoring 2 runs in the bottom of the 1st. The score remained the same until the 4th when the Pills offense came alive & tallied 5 times to take a 7-5 lead. After both teams were blanked in the 5th inning, the Beardies suddenly woke up & scored 4 times grabbing a 2- run lead. In the top of the 7th, the grey guys then exploded for 7 more runs making the score 16 to 7.
The Blue Pills made a valiant attempt to overcome the deficit but fell 5 runs short to absorb their 1st loss of the season.
"All we needed was a challenge skipper" crowed Roman (Crazy Legs) Kryzaniwsky “and a few new bats in the line up”. And that’s what happened to the Beardies as out from hibernation came Frank Accomando, Bill Ballagh and rookie Charles Leskun. All 3 had sparkling games accounting for 8 hits combined and flawless defensive efforts. Accomando went 4 for 4 scoring 3 times including a 3 run triple in the 7th. Mike Way was 3 for 4 and scored four times and didn’t hit any cars and Roy Kitching also contributed three hits.
Leading the Pills was Laurence Drew who was perfect at the plate. Defensively, Phil Dechene made a wonderful catch in right centre field snatching a sure double from Awadh Jaggernath.
As the final score would indicate, Game Two was very close featuring outstanding pitching by the Blue Pills dynamic duo of Jack Pang & Laurence Drew and the Grey Beards Rick Wilkinson.
Things started pretty well for "Johnston's Geriatrics" when the Blue Pills scored a single run to start the game but the Beards scored 2 to take a 2-1 lead. Both teams scored twice in the 2nd inning making the score 4-3 in favour of the Grey Beards. The score remained unchanged until the 6th inning when the Pills scored twice to take a 5-4 lead. The Grey Beards had several scoring opportunities but could not push any more runs across from the 3rd through the 7th inning.
After a couple of controversial calls things got serious and that’s when Klaus Kreutzberg did his thing as he stole a hit from an amazed Blue Pill team diving face-first into the dirt to his right at second snaring a one-hopper and flipping it to a waiting Peter Bowers. SWEET --- Killing the rally! The table was now set: Down by a run, going into the bottom of the 7th one out, the Bearded guys had runners at the corners and another come-back victory in sight. But it wasn't to be as the Pills turned the classic 6-4-3 double play to end the game.
The Blue Pills hitting stars for Game 2 were Jim Banyard & Laurence Drew who were both perfect at the plate. Drew has now had 12 consecutive hits over the past four games.
Beards’ rookie Klaus (I eat dirt for fun) Kreutzberg was 3 for 3 and none the worse for wear with his hi-lite reel play(in ultra-slow motion) at 2nd.
Special mention should be made of Grey’s Awadh Jaggernath who took one in the "jewels" and kept on playin'
WHITE HAIRS STAGE TWO COMEBACKS AGAINST THE GOLDS - ONE SUCCESSFULLY!
Rookie Mike Boyle Stars But Becomes Latest White Player to be Placed on DL
The White Hairs and Golden Years battled it out to a very unsatisfying split, both games won by one run. The final scores were 14-13 for both games. In each game the Golden boys took early control with timely hitting but furious 7th inning comebacks for the Whites resulted in overcoming the lead for a win in Game One but falling short by a run in Game Two.
In their search for that elusive first win of the season the White Hairs nailed a merciful 5 runs to the board in the first inning of Game One. And in an odd bit of inning-scoring, they added 5 runs in the 3rd, 2 runs in the 5th. However, heading into the bottom of the 7th the Hairs trailed by 3 runs. With 3 runners choking the bases, rookie Mike Boyle strode to the plate and with one mighty swing cleared the bases with a triple to centre field. It was now up to rookie sub Leo (known only by one name, just like Cher, Liberace, and Michelangelo) to try and cash in Boyle with the game-winning run. A wicked shot down the third base line by a now-smiling Leo did just that. Another one-run game for the Hairs, but this time they were on top by a final score of 14- 13. Doing most of the heavy hammering were Jeff Morton with a perfect 4 for 4 and 4 runs scored, Larry Weber contributed a homerun, 3 singles and 4 runs scored. Cubby Hubert and Bert Therrien banged out 3 hits apiece. Bob Oliver and Ev Lucenti each crossed the plate twice.
The 11 unearned runs the Golds handed to Johnson's injury depleted survivors overcame the Gold batting in the first encounter. The Hairs were shaved down ro just 10 players by game's end due to a variety of ailments occurring on the field.
With the Hairs already playing without 5 of their regulars, things were going to get worse in the second game. With Boy George singing in the background, “karma, karma, karma, karma, karma can be a bitch”, first game heroes Boyle and Leo were both knocked out of the match: Boyle separated his shoulder making a spectacular catch in left-centre field, and Leo had the misfortune of taking a high fly ball off his wrist while trying to make a great catch of his own. Boyle now joins Tony Foscarin and Greg Hughes on the Hairs' disabled List. The good news is that Manager Bill Johnson is cleared to return next week.
Unfortunately, TSN arrived too late to catch the second game (something about a Canada -Russia hockey game...yawn) to record the highlight reel catches by Gold’s Mike Albert, Ty Crawford and Terry Ronnenberg. And kudos to the "Trigger" aka John Trigiani for the perfect throw to home to record the third out in the 7th, which coincidentally happened to be the tying run.
Offensively the Hairs fell behind 12-3 after 3 innings and a mercy score seemed imminent. But a rally was slowly underway as Jeff Morton cranked out a pair of triples and scored twice, Larry Weber was singularly perfect at the plate and scored a trio of runs, Bob Oliver showed a preference for threesomes as his 3 singles resulted in 3 RBI’s, and Cubby Hubert had both a quartet of hits and RBI’s.
Gold’s John Manderson, Don Moseley-Williams, Hurler Ron Berry, and the Doc, Tom Sawa were all a perfect 5 for 5 for the Golden guys on the day. Four others, who shall remain unsung this week due to space restraints, all went 4 for 5 resulting in 53 runners on base for the Oldie Goldies. Not bad for a squad with seven, 70 plussers rounding the bases.
Thanks for the submissions from: Greg Aubert, Chris Zelkovich Gary Goulden, Tom Hunter, Roy Kitching, Doug Ford, John Koopman and Dave Adams. Game photos by Ev Lucenti.
These reports were compiled and edited by mostly unmedicated people
DREAMS OF PERFECT SEASON BLOWN AWAY QUICKLY
Red Faces Trim the Beards Despite the Adversities
Game One: Red Faces 13 Grey Beards 12
Well there goes the perfect season. The Beards came into Thursday feeling pretty confident after man-handling the Gimps last week. But the team in grey this week was not the same team that showed up last week.
Actually, it was pretty ugly on both sides as the wind made for interesting defense in the outfield.
The final score was decided in the last inning when the Grey guys made a couple extra mistakes costing them the game that they had battled all game to finally tie in the 6th. But Ford (that would be Doug) had a better idea when he doubled in the winning run.
The ever-optimistic Beards manager Johnston wasn't discouraged though and said to his mates: “We got beat by the wind”. 10 Year Vet Ray Grisold responded with "Yeah the wind that Ford created whizzing by us".
The Red Faces received some outstanding performances from Hal Ridley (3 for 3 at the plate and solid pitching despite gale force winds), Jim Embrey, making his season debut, (also 3 for 3 and stellar defence in the field) and Al King (stroking that key single in the 7th to set the table for Ford’s winning RBI.
Key performers for the disappointed Beardies included: Paul Hunter (4 for 4 and superb defense), Klause Kreutzberg (4 for 4), Bill King and Lloyd Johnston each 3 for 4).
Game Two: Red Faces 14 Grey Beards 07
Both teams looked exhausted and beat-up after Game One and so decided to make Game Two a 5-inning contest. The first 2 innings looked promising as outfielder Mike Way hit 2 - 3 run homers to keep it close. Unfortunately, the rest of the team took the rest of the day off feeling that super-hero Mike had everything under control as he also threw out a runner at first.
The Reds endured mounting injuries and, in the end, the Red machine rolled over the "hungry and thirsty" Grey gang 14 -7.
"Not to worry mates", said Grey Beard Neil Donaldson. “We’ll be back next week.”
Red Faces’ Don Yaschyshyn was flawless at Rover, even taking one in the “boys” for the team and still gathering enough strength to throw out a speedy runner at 1st. He was also 2 for 2 at the plate.Manager Ford banged out 3 hits in 3 appearances. Andy McMackin was 2 for 2 as was Jim Embrey despite pulling his groin and only being able to catch.
Finally, Doug Auld’s (2 for 2 at bat) big play was the TSN Turning Point. With the Reds up 8-7 and the surging Grey Beards with only one out, Auld made a great running catch on an infield blooper towards 1st. He then turned and fired a bullet to 3rd to catch the runner off base to complete the double play.
GOLDEN YEARS BACK ON TRACK AT GREENS' EXPENSE
Ron Berry Defies the Wind to Strike Out the Gimps
Game One: Golden Years 20 – Green Gimps 18
Game Two: Golden Years 17 – Green Gimps 08
Under ominous skies and hampered by a ferocious wind blowing out to left field, the Green Gimps strove to bounce back from their 0-2 start in week one. Alas, it was not to be.
A deadly pitching performance by Ron Berry in the spring gale was a major factor in the Goldies getting launched, taking a pair from the Gimpers 20-18 and 17-8. While the Golds parried quite a few walks into runs, Berry used the wind to his advantage, constantly pitching strikes with his patented curve and gathering a few K's along the way.
The misfortune for the Green guys started early when Bruce Locke was nailed by two-line drives - before the first game. Bruce may want to think twice before he volunteers to pitch batting practice again. But the hard luck and short-staffed Gimps did cause heart palpitations in the Gold Manager when they scored 9 in the bottom of the 7th to almost overcome an 11 run lead with a nice but short- lived comeback.
Highlights of Game One for the Greens included spending an inordinate amount of time trying to stop the screen from being blown over, a nice snag of a line drive by Steve Moses, and a nice play by Ron Linklater and Dave George to tag a runner who wandered off third base. Ed Schnurr, Brock Patterson, John Stillich and Peter Dovey were each 3-4. Tom Hunter was 3-3 with a walk, and Ross Macintosh was 2-3. Ross bore the brunt of the gale in left field and experimented with a variety of strategies to return the ball to the infield, including running it in, kicking it soccer style and occasionally throwing it.
After the Goldies’ close call in the 7th inning of Game One, Manager Goulden of the Golden Years craftily negotiated the elimination of the 7th inning in game two. Learning from their experience in Game One, the Golden boys kept the spread distant in Game Two with a 4 run-inning sandwiched around two 5-run slots.
Gold’s Tom Sawa was lead-off and leader getting on base 6 times in 7 at bats. An injury hampered Mike McFadden was a clean 6 for 6. Sweet swinging Tom Gorman was also aboard 6 times and bounced one off the fence despite the wind having subsided. An always energetic Terry Ronnenberg flew around the bases, capping his day with an inside the park 4 bagger. He also learned that the runner from the screen should have a resting point partway to first while enacting the feat about 5 times on the morning. It was the price he paid for being the youngster among the "experienced."
Peter Dovey of the Gimps had a good debut to his OMMSLP pitching career by striking out the second batter he faced. In the second inning, Manager Kitchen of the Gimps stroked a (slightly wind-assisted) line drive to the fence and easily rounded the bases for an inside the park home run. Ditto for the next batter, Ron Linklater, although he was somewhat surprised when he saw the third base coach frantically waving him home and seemed a little reluctant to continue the journey. Steve Moses added an IPHR in the fifth inning. Tom Hunter was 3-3 and each of Steve Moses, Ed Schnurr and Manager Kitchen was 2-3. Despite the Gimps' heroic efforts, the Goldies continued to hit the ball all over the field at will, running up a convincing 17-9 victory. The Gimps were left muttering about what they could have accomplished in the non-existent 7th inning.
BLUE PILLS SNIP WHITE HAIRS BY NARROWEST OF MARGINS
Game 1: Blue Pills 24 - White Hairs 23
The White Hairs and the Blue Pills got together for a couple of tilts at Millbank East on Thursday and it turned out to be a bit of a slugfest. Unfortunately for the Whities, they ended up on the short end in two one run games, by scores of 20-19 and 12-11. The unlucky White Hairs have now scored just 6 few runs over four games than what they have had scored against them but have but one point out of a possible 8 in the standings. Manager Bill Johnston is planning to play next week and looks to turn the misfortune around.
To say it was a tad blustery would be an understatement as the wind, which was blowing hard out to left, made it a very difficult day for the pitchers. Despite the high scores, hurlers on both sides did a good job managing to bit the board just enough to keep the hitters honest.
In Game One, the Pills pounded out 35 hits leading to 24 runs & grabbed a 1-run walk-off victory. It was a close game from start to finish with the lead changing hands 4 times. The score was 19 apiece after 5 innings. The Whites were held scoreless in the 6th after recording 3 consecutive 5-run innings in a row. The Pills then tallied 1 run the bottom of the 6th on the strength of a booming double by Jym Grimshaw followed by a clutch 2-out base hit by Aarne Kartna.
In the top of the 7th inning the Whites scored 4 times to grab a 3-run lead heading into the bottom of the 7th. The Blue Pills replied with 5 consecutive singles tying the score with nobody out & had men at 1st & second with nobody out. A fielder's choice advanced the runners to 2nd & 3rd. The White Hairs intentionally walked the hot hitting John Good who was 4 for 4 at that point thus creating a force play at every base. But Greg Aubert singled over the outfielders’ heads for the walk-off victory.
John Good, Laurence Drew & Aarne Kartna were all perfect at the plate for the Blue Pills. Honourable mentions go out to Graham Orr, Greg Aubert, Jym Grimshaw, Bob Rose, John Finley and Dick Wood who each had 3 hits.
Game 2: Blue Pills 12 – White Hairs 11
Both teams seemed to be a little fatigued after the 2-hour long first game. Seeing as everyone was getting thirsty, both managers agreed that each batter would start with a 1 & 1 count for the second game.
In Game 2, the Whities came on strong with a 5 spot in the first but fizzled out until they managed 4 in the 5th. But they couldn’t manage to get a run through in either the 6th or the 7th and suffered another 1 run loss.
The Blue Pills offence started strongly in Game 2 and gradually built a 9 to 5 lead after 3 innings. Both teams scored 2 runs in the 4th inning resulting in a 11 to 7 lead for the Pills. The Pills scored their final run in the top of the 5th while the White Hairs offence came alive scoring 4 runs leaving the score at 12 to 11 after 5 innings.
The White Hairs defense led by shortstop Jeff Morton tightened up & held the Pills scoreless the rest of the way. The White Hairs left the bases loaded in the 6th and had men at 1st & 2nd in the 7th but could not muster any more runs against the staunch defense of the Blue Pills.
The Blue Pills hitting stars were Lawrence Drew who was perfect at the plate & Mike Mozewsky who collected 3 hits in Game 2.
Bert Therrien and John Vinnai took the mound for the Whites and had to battle the wind in both games. Paul Ritchie had a good game at the plate with 3 hits, 2walks and 3 RBI’s. Ev Lucenti scored times on 3 walks and a hit with Greg Hughes, Bob George and Vinnai each collecting 3 hits and a couple of RBI’s.
With Tony Foscarin out for the season, leader Bill Johnson on the shelf for and both Larry Weber and Vince Moffat away, Redd Reid spared and filled in nicely on the field and also showed a strong bat at the plate.
Paul Ritchie, Ev Lucenti and Cubbie Hubert each had good games at the plate.
In battling the strong winds and a high scoring Game One there weren’t many defensive highlights although Jeff Morton’s reliable play at shortstop certainly deserves mention with a couple of stellar plays made and saving a couple of runs.
Next up for the Whites are the Golden Years at Glenashton East.
RUSTY ROYALS WIN IN THE WIND
Fine Wines Spill Their Chances
Noseworthy Returns with Grand Slam
Game One: Rusty Royals 14 – Fine Wines 11
Game Two: Rusty Royals 22 – Fine Wines 07
“When the wind’ at yer back. give it that ye got
And then just a little bit more
When the wind’s in yer face. give it that ye got
Don’t ye ever be turnin’ fer shore!!”
(Anon- or was it the Murphy twins?)
No one is admitting who wrote that but there are at least three suspects on the Royals. In any case the boys in blue did take hold of the wind and enjoyed a slugfest at the expense of the previously undefeated Fine Wines.
Although the Royals were short staffed, spare Shane Noseworthy was noteworthy as he lined a grand slam over the fence in first inning. Despite the lot being full, no cars were injured. (Mike Way: did you hear that?) The team was elated; however, Coach Crocker moaned “Why did he not put any out when he played full time for the Royals last year?”
The Rusty guys scored 36 runs over two games with 3rd Base coach Rick Wilcox nicknamed “The Black Knight” as when he waved his arm like a Dutch windmill with the arm of his black jacket caught in the wind. It was a fun day for the hitters: Doug Wingrove went a perfect 7 for 7; rookie Glenn Crane had 5 hits in 7 at bats, as did Gregg (Mac) Macaulay. Barny Henderson motored around the bases 5 times to go with his 5 hits. The two spares Noseworthy (4 for 6, 4 runs and 7 RBI’s) and Tom Curry (5 for 6 with 4 RBI’s) guaranteed themselves further invitations this year.
There were also some fielding highlights with the 5 double plays by infielders Gregg Macaulay at 3rd base, Howard Mott at shortstop, Max Crocker (the Rocker) at Rover, Doug Wingrove at 2nd and Don (Scooper) Brown @ 1st base.
Meanwhile in the outfield, not apparently phased by the wind, Barny Henderson tracked down fly after fly and Mike Horner, who goes from 35 to 60 at the drop of his hat, played his usual stellar defence.
While the Royals seemed to have the wind at their backs as they hit the seams in the outfield, the Wines were not enjoying the windy conditions at all with some misreads, miscues and outright misses. On a positive note, Bill (Stubby) Stubbins pitched well despite the wind and made several good plays on hard hit balls. Later when winding down at the pub, the Wine survivors were overheard exchanging ophthalmologist names and discussing the benefits of carrot juice. Time to regroup for next Thursday. But the Royals never once “Turned Fer Shore”
Thanks for the submissions from: Greg Aubert, Brian Sheridan, Gary Goulden, Tom Hunter, Roy Kitching, Doug Ford, Al Baskett and Greg Hughes.
MAY 03, 2018
Disclaimer: No animals were harmed in the production of these Game Reports.
GREY BEARDS TAKE TWO FROM GREEN GIMPS
BEARDS LOOK LIKE TEAM TO BEAT WITH CONVINCING WINS OVER GIMPS
Game One: Grey Beards 11 – Green Gimps 5
Game Two: Grey Beards 17 – Green Gimps 3
Michael Kitchen's Gimps may be calling for a formal enquiry into the player selection committee's creation of Lloyd Johnston's Grey Beards’ squad as they rolled over the Greenies 11-5 in the first game and showed no mercy in the second game with a 17 - 4 mercy killing in 5 innings work.
The beleaguered Gimps’ Manager had carefully outlined his crafty plan in an inspirational pre-game pep talk. “Boys – let’s not peak too early”. The team executed the strategy to perfection. Luckily the mercy rule was invoked just as the rain started. The Greybeards were in mid-season form.
Game 1 seemed for ever to play as both teams looked like they needed a chisel to carve off the rust, making more mistakes than Donald Trump's private life.
Leading the way for the Beardies were Roy ( helmet man) Kitching who went 3 for 4 and a walk, Rick ( Water Boy) Wilkinson a perfect 3 for 3
Awadh ( who's your daddy now) Jaggernath at 2 for 3.
Paul (set-up crew) Hunter went 3 for 4 with some great leadership on the infield and Mike(car-crusher) Way who sent one over the fence.
Game 2 was shaping-up as another mistake-fest until Coach Johnston reminded his mates that our new diggs closes at 9 p.m. and the beer isn't getting colder. With that in mind, his "Bearded Wonders" shaped up defensively shutting down any threats with mid-season form plays and a crushing hit parade.
Highlighting the Mercy game were Mike (I'm not payin' for that) Way who went 3 for 3 with 2 dingers and perfect game in the outfield;
Rick (I'm not afraid of any hitter) Wilkinson going 3 for 3 giving him a perfect day. Also starring were Ray (I should be shortstop) Grisold with a perfect 3 for 3 and solid fielding at 1st base and rookie Klaus (who is this guy)Kreutzberg who went 2 for 3 with two hard hit balls to the outfield fence
Awad ( I like to talk to all the girls) Jaggernanath goes 2 for 3 giving him a 4 for 6 day!!!! Way to go Jaggs.
A case of WD-40 would have been required to rid the Gimps of the rust they had accumulated since last September. Dropped balls and wide throws were the order of the day. Two (count ‘em – two) runners who shall remain nameless were called out for leaving early. In fairness, Manager Kitchen was at the plate both times and the runners had every reason to expect his mighty swings would result in contact. There were a few glimmers of hope, however. Steve Moses made a nice overhead running catch at shortstop. Ron Linklater snagged a line drive at second with an impressive 6 inch leap. Dave George muttered “anything you can do...” and promptly repeated the trick with a 9 inch leaping catch (starting from a slightly lower elevation). Art Knight pitched both games admirably but was undone by defensive miscues behind him.
The Gimps had some success at the plate in game 1 - Ron Linklater was 3 for 3 with a walk, Tom Hunter was 3 for 4 with a walk, and each of Brock Paterson, Steve Moses, Doug Briscoe and the aforementioned Knight were 3 for 4. (Editors’ note – with those performances, how did they lose?) The batting stats in game 2 shall remain sealed.
BLUE PILLS ARE HARD ON THE GOLDEN YEARS
Game One: Blue Pills 20 – Golden Years 10
Game Two: Blue Pills 16 – Golden Years 15
The Blue Pills put the wood to the Goldies in the season opener by scoring a total of 36 runs over 2 games and winning both.
The Pills pounded out 29 hits producing 20 runs for the victory. Both teams started strongly scoring 5 runs each in the 1st inning but the 2nd inning was scoreless for both teams. The Pills then scored 4 in the 3rd on the strength of John Good's 3 run inside-the-park dinger. The Blue guys continued to
smash the ball & scored 1 in the 4th, 4 in the 5th, 3 in the 6th & 3 in the 7th. The defense played well & turned a couple of double plays & held the Golds to single runs the rest of the way. Jim Banyard, John Good, Jym Grimshaw & Graham Orr were all perfect at the plate.
With Gold’s flame-thrower Ron Berry doing his last laps in the pool in sunny Florida it was up to rookie Terry Ronnenberg, with no bull pen behind him, to hold down the pervasive hitting of the Blues. Terry put in a
hty and deserving effort but Aubert's boys hit every gap in the field even when there wasn't one there.
The Blue Pills offence continued to be strong in the nightcap compiling a team batting average of 642 for this contest.
Manager Greg Aubert set the scene with a 3 run inside-the-park homer in the 1st inning as the Pills once again scored 5 runs in the opening frame. The Pills scored 5 more in the 2nd on the strength of a booming double by Greg Sportun & run scoring hits by Orr & John Finley.
It was 11 - 2 after 3 innings.
The next two innings featured a comeback by the Golden Years. They scored 5 runs in both frames & grabbed a 12 - 11 lead going into the bottom of the 5th. The Pills responded with 5 of their own & re-took the lead. The Golden guys were not done and scored 3 in the top of the 6th & held the Pills scoreless in the bottom of the 6th leaving the Pills up only one run going into the final frame.
The right side of the Pills infield (Jym Grimshaw & Laurence Drew) got all 3 outs to retire the Goldies in order. The Blue Pills hitting stars were Jim Banyard, John Good, Aubert, Mike Mozewsky,Greg Sportun, Phil Dechene and Bob Neilson who were all perfect at the plate in Game Two.
Despite banging out 50 hits over the morning the Golden boys had difficulty getting the key hits when needed. Although being doubled up 20-10 in the first game, the team, with 3 rookie starters introducing themselves to Oakville, began to gel in game 2 and lost a close one 16-15. Tom Gorman was his stellar self both defensively and with the bat going a perfect 6 for 6 and gobbling up innumerable grounders at shortstop. Tom Sawa, Ty Crawford and newcomers Jon Diniz and Bill Tyler each contributed 5 hits on the day. The normally befuddled Gold manager was heard later saying that it was good to sandbag early so we could surprise the other teams the rest of the way.
WINES EEK ONE WIN & A TIE
Game One: FINE WINES 11 – WHITE HAIRS 8
Game Two: FINE WINES 11 – WHITE HAIRS 11
Beneath grey skies and the threat of rain, the White Hairs began their season against the Fine Wines in an optimistic fashion. First inning singles by Dave Adams and Jeff Morton and RBIs from Larry Weber and Ev Lucenti put the Hairs up 2-0. In the top of the second, four more runs were driven home by Bert Therrien, John Vinnai and Paul Ritchie. By the end of the 4th inning the score was 7-4 White Hairs. Hopes were higher than that ant climbing the rubber tree plant.
But alas, the Fine Wines then poured it on with 7 runs in the 5th and 6th innings to take an opening game win by a score of 11-8, ending with a walk off leadoff.
Bill Johnson, the despondent White Hairs manager, looked like he was about to tear his hair out but all he managed to do was scratch the palm of his hand. The Wines were led by a pair of Ricks – Martin and Cummings who were each a perfect 3 for 3.
Game Two saw the Fine Wines jump to a 6-1 lead after 3 and a half innings. The White Hairs brushed away any negative thoughts and surged ahead 9-6 with one inning to play.
But not for long. The top of the 7th saw the Winers score 5 runs and take an 11-9 lead. The never say die White Hairs’ John Vinnai and Paul Ritchie scored in the bottom of the 7th to knot the score. With the bases loaded and two out, a long fly ball to centre field concluded the contest.
Big bangers for the Hairs were Dave “Cubby Bear” Hubert with two stand-up, heavy-breathing triples and Jeff Morton (just 24 hours removed from a 5-day, rim-to-rim trek in the Grand Canyon) who smashed a homerun to deep centre. Greg Hughes came through with a pair of RBIs. Ev Lucenti contributed 3 hits and was a perfect 6 for 6 in the daytime doubleheader.
Fine Wines’ Chris Zelkovich went 3 for 3 and also hit a booming first in the park home run.
The Wines’ Rookie Manager Cummings was observed breathing a sigh of relief.
Instead of the traditional post game handshakes, the players kissed each other’s sister and then headed straight for the Pipes and Taps bar.
More colourful commentaries will be forthcoming as the season progresses if the humble White Hairs’ reporter doesn’t spend time between innings on his phone trying to buy Fleetwood Mac tickets, and actually acquaints himself with the idiosyncrasies of his new teammates.
REDS & ROYALS SPLIT
Hi-Lites:Great Baskett Catch and Ford’s Golf Shoes
Before the games, the teams met at 2nd base and observed a moment’s silence in memory of Harvey Hewgill and Jimmy Baxter. (Editor’s note: Classy touch guys)
Game One: Rusty Royals 22 – Red Faces 21
The bats were alive, even if the defence was a bit suspect early on, Royals held on to win 22-21. Reds were the home team, down by one in the bottom of the 7th. With one out, Rick Bradley was up with Ted Talbot on 3rd with the tying run, Ford on 2nd and Yaschyshyn on 1st. Bradley hit one that looked like it was going over the head of rover Al Basket. To everyone’s surprise, including Baskett, he dove backwards, caught the ball and then proceeded to roll around in the dirt…. actually, couldn’t get up…. LOL……It was ultimately the play of the game. Talbot, like everyone else didn’t think the ball was catchable and didn’t tag up. He was subsequently called out at 3rd to end the game.
The highlight for the deflated team was a Red-Faced Manager Ford showing up at the park without his ball shoes and surreptitiously substituting them with his golf shoes.
Reds’ Rookie Paul Black joined the league and did so in style, going 4/4 and displayed stellar defence at shortstop. George Merrick and Al King also went 4 for 4 while 10-year veteran Al Stokes went 3 for 3.
We are awaiting the Royals’ game report.
Game Two: Red Faces 10 - Rusty Royals 7
The first game took almost 2 hours, so the teams agreed to play 5 innings so they could get to the Pub earlier than 2pm.
The second game started like the first, with both teams trading four runs in the opening inning. Then, reality kicked in and the winter rust showed its ugly head and the bats went cold for next three innings. In the 4th inning, the Royals scored 3 to go up 7-4. The Reds countered in the top of the 5th by scoring 6 and going ahead 10-7 and blanking the Rusted guys in the bottom of the 5th.
Leading the way for the Red Faces were Paul Black, Al King, Andy McMacKin and Manager Ford who each had 2 for 3 games.
Royals Al Baskett (aka Leo Murphy) was once again in the spotlight, this time twisting his ankle and being carried off the field. The good news is he was walking when he got to the Pub. The bad news is he may be optioned to Buffalo to join Devon Travis in a Rehab and Safety training assignment. The always prepared Manager Crocker has already requisitioned a larger First Aid Kit (actually he asked for a standby ambulance), while teammate and Paramedic Joe Parisiani has already been talking about a need for days off during the season.