uDateline: FC Green
On a crisp fall evening, the O’s took the field against the Dodgers. The Dodgers came in with an undefeated 8-0 record. Scott led off with a walk and quickly stole second, but the Dodgers pitcher then struck out the side. Michael went to the mound and struck out the leadoff man. A walk and an error put runners on at first and second. A sacrifice bunt moved the runners to second and third as Michael made a nice throw to Isaac for out two. A long double and triple scored three runs. Michael settled down and struck out the next batter. After one it was Dodgers 3 O’s 0.
Top of the second and Adam led off with a sharp single to center. Michael drilled a single to center and Coach Grossman sent Adam to third, but the center fielder made a perfect throw and got Adam by a step. Isaac walked but the next batter struck out to end inning. Bottom of the second and Michael made short work of the bottom of the order. Two quick strike outs and then a perfect bunt in front of the plate put a runner on first. The runner moved to third as he stole second and the throw went into center field. A wild pitch scored the run. Michael settled down and struck out the last batter for four strikeouts on the day. After two it was 4-0 Dodgers.
Top of the third and the O’s fought back. Krish was hit by a pitch. Frankie beat out an infield single to the right of the pitcher. The runners advanced on a wild pitch. Colin beat on an infield single to load the bases with no outs. A wild pitch scored Krish. Sol was hit by a pitch to load the bases again. Adam singled to score Frankie. Michael beat out an infield hit. Isaac hit a long fly to center that was caught. Colin scored on a wild pitch and then on a ball four to Tripp, Sol scored on a wild pitch. Four runs had scored an there were only one out. Bottom of the third and Krish came on to pitch. He got the first two batters to ground out to the mound. Two walks made things interesting, but he settled down to strike out the last batter. After three it was all tied up at 4.
Top of the fourth and Joseph led off with a sharp hit to the shortstop. The shortstop just got to the ball and overthrew first. Joseph overran the bag and was heading back to first and was tagged out by the first baseman. The field ump ruled him out for making a move toward second. Coach Grossman threw his hat on the ground and this reporter has not seen him this annoyed at a youth baseball call in quite some time. After discussion the umpires agreed that Joseph had made a move to second. [Editors Note: We apologize to our readers for all this commentary. It is so hard to get reporters to stick to a simple review of the game. Always with the drama. ] The next two batters struck out. Bottom of the fourth and Krish ran into some control problem and walked the first two batters. Sol came on in relief and struck out the next batter. Some wild pitches scored two runs. Two more batters walked and with two outs, the next batter bunted. Sol made a great play getting to it, but unfortunately his throw was off line and got past Isaac and into right field. The two runners scored and the batter was out rounding third, but four runs had already scored. After four it was Dodgers 8 Orioles 4.
Top of the fifth and the O’s went down in order as Krish popped out to the mound, the next batter struck out and Colin grounded out to the mound. Bottom of the fifth and Colin came on. The first batter walked. The next batter hit a popop and Sol camped under it. It went in and out of his glove and bounced toward Tripp who alertly made the catch. This reporter does not thing he’s EVER seen such a play. Orioles fans rejoiced. A couple of wild pitches scored a run. The next batter walked and foolishly tried to steal second on Frankie who gunned him down and second where Sol expertly applied the tag. With two outs another batter walked and some wild pitches scored the run. After 5 it was Dodgers 10 Orioles 4.
Top of the sixth and the O’s dugout was loud as they fully expected a comeback. Sol led off with a walk. He scored on three wild pitches. The Dodgers pitcher settled down and struck out the next three batters. Final Score Dodgers 10 Orioles 5.
Coach Grossman was available briefly as he wanted to start preparations for the playoffs this weekend. “Well it’s been a great regular season. We could have won this game with some better defense and a little more timely hitting, but I loved how we battled back. The Dodgers have some good pitchers and we put a lot of balls in play. We’ll clean up our defense a little bit and be ready to go. ” He was then asked about the call at first and he said, “Well you reporters always like to bring up difficult issues. I certainly disagree with the call but I shouldn’t have thrown my hat. I work on that every year and I would say that over time I am getting better, but it’s still an area that can be improved. I will talk to the league officials and see if we can get some better guidelines to our youth umpires. They are trying their best, but this is a case where some improved guidelines might help.” Depending on the results of the Phillies-Yankees game this evening the O’s will finish either second or third in the league. A few tickets remain for the playoffs that start this Saturday.