Young Abe-rahams take on Special Agents in STNB Opener
This Game is an Instant Classic
By B. Fluff
Photography By Vanessa
Hurricane Earle had lost his stuff off the Cape and was heading to the showers off Nova Scotia just as Justine dug in as the first batter in the top of the first for the Special Agents. Nightman was on the hill for the Young Abe-rahams, resplendant in his Al Sharpton sports ensemble. Ump Pesci gave the Play Ball.
Nightman, Noodles Sharp early
The first two innings went smoothly for the starting pitchers of the Special Agents and the Young Abe-rahams. The only run scored on an outfield muff in the bottom of the first, and after two quick innings, the score was 1-0, Young Abe-rahams.
The top of the 3rd was a different story, as the Special Agents jumped on the tiring Nightman. Sophmore sensation Q led off with a sharp single, followed by Justine, Noodles, and Paddy singles and a ringing double off the bat of Chap. Pop was retired on a grounder to Hamma, unassisted, but Flash, 3T and Cap drew walks off the flustered Nighter. Manager Abe replaced Nightman and K'd Q and Justine to retire the side. Six runs crossed and the Special Agents drew first blood.
Young Abrahams Strike Back
Justine took the hill for the Special Agents in the Abe-raham half of the 3rd. Nails and Abe led off the inning by working walks, as Justine adjusted her stuff. She adjusted enough to K the pesky Magma on a nice low curveball and then gave up another free pass to Buck. Oh, those bases on balls! The dangerous Troop responded with a big base hit to left scoring Nails and Abe. Nightman, who had now recovered from his pounding in the top of the inning, responded with a BOMB to left center scoring Buck and Troop. Justine stiffened to K Stu, but Hamma beat out an infield hit to knot the score at 6-6. Catnip was retired on a 1-3 to end the frame.
The Young Abrahams were opportunistic and were back in the game. After 3 YA 6, SA 6.
Only a Soul Beyond Redemption can Fail to Appreciate a Clutch Hit
The Special Agents were clutch all day. With Catnip on the mound in the 4th, the SAs got right back at it. Catnip was hitting his spots and had his stuff, but the Agents pushed across three anyway. Noodles, who is impossible to get out no matter who is pitching, singled to right center. C'nip made some nice pitches to Paddy, but Paddy worked a walk. Chap then smacked one to Troop at third, forcing Paddy. Pop ripped one to right scoring Nood. With 2 outs, the Special Agents struck, like they would all day. 3T ripped a hit to left scoring Chap and Cap followed with his patented right center single scoring Pop. The Special Agents are back up by three; just like that.
The Young Abe-rahams see your Clutch and raise it with an opportunistic.
Barb worked a walk and Nails singled to center to start the bottom of the 4th. After a wild pitch, Abe plated Barb on a groundout. With 2 out, Buck blooped one into short right scoring Nails. Justine K'd the tough Troop looking with Buck on 3rd to end the inning. 9-8 SA after 4.
The 5th started good for Catnip. With 2 outs and Noodles, who had one of his 6 hits, on first, Chap singles to center. Pop then absolutely destroys a Catnip breaking ball ans sends a missle towards Magma in right center. Time slows down as every eye slowly tracks Magma and the speeding baseball. They seem to be on the same trajectory. Even the dogs were watching the play. Magma's Patriot Missle telemetry vs. a speeding Pop liner....the ball sails just over Magma's outstretched glove and by the time Magma throws the ball back in , it's 11-8 Special Agents.
With Chap on the hill in the bottom of the inning, the SA's continue their clutch play as Chap pitches out of a bases loaded sitiation stranding Nighter, Stuman and Catnip. After 5, 11-8 SA.
Catnip pitched a strong 6th, but with two out, Q hustled out an infield muff and Justine collected her second hit of the day, a liner to left moving Q into scoring position. Noodles base hit #5 of the day stretched the lead to 12-8 . Noodles was money all day.
Now it Really Gets Interesting
With one out in the home half of the 6th, Abe singled and Magma followed suit. Buck walked, loading the bases, and the dangerous Troop flied to left, scoring Abe for the second out. Nighter ripped another single to left center and the game stood at 12-10 after 6.
Buck was now pitching for the Young Abe-rahams. The Secret Agents went quietly around a walk to Flash, Abe making a nice play on 3T's swing bunt from the catcher's spot for the 3rd out.
Chap was on the hill again in the 7th facing Hamma, who proceeded to beat out a roller to Nood at short. The next hitter, Catnip, took one right off the helmet and trotted down to first after dusting himself off. After trying to sac bunt, and fouling one off, Barb chopped one to Chap's glove side. Chap dove, snared it and nipped Troop (running for Hamma) at third in an awesome play; Chap to 3T. Nails laced a single scoring Kenny and Magma walked after a strikout. Chap got Buck on a flair to Q at second with the bases loaded to escape the jam. The YA's creeped back to 12-11 after 7.
Buck breezed thru the top of the 8th with the exception of Noodles 6th straight base hit.
3T has the closer spot for the SA's and his afternoon started ominously as Troop reached on a muff and Nighter and Stuman singled, scoring Troop with Nighter and Stu advancing to second and third. The score is finally knotted at 12, with the Young Abe-rahams poised to take their first lead since the second inning.
DUM da DUM...DUM! Daaaaaaa....
Having been in this position, I can tell you that your situation can go from bad to worse if you don't make quality pitches when the heat is on. This is exactly what 3T did. With the infield drawn in, 3T induced Hamma and Catnip to rap grounders at SS Noodles, playing on the grass, for put outs at first. Barb worked another walk with a smart at-bat, bringing Nails to the plate with the bases loaded with 2-outs. This is the same situation the Abe-rahams had last inning with Buck at-bat. 3T got Nails to loft a fly ball to Flash in center for the third..whew..out. After 8, unbelievably, it's still 12-12.
Hammer has taken the hill for the Special Agent 9th.
Hamma is greeted with base hits by Pop, Flash and 3T, loading the bases with none out. It the Abe-raham's turn to sweat. Cap popped up to Troop at 3rd for the first out bringing Q to the plate. Q whaled a Hamma sinker into the gap between Magma and Nightman, clearing the bases. The Special Agent bench went crazy, and the dogs went crazy as 3T streaked home with the 15th tally of the game. Even Cassy went crazy. Hamma was the first Abe-raham pitcher to get Noodles out next, and Barb made a nice play on a high fly ball off Pop's bat for the 3rd out.
3T was going to have to survive the 9th. Mimi was over in the Box Seats cheering her boy on as Abe dug in. Abe proceeded to collect his 3rd hit of the day and Magma his 2nd. Buck was up in a damage situation and rapped to Noodles at short for a 6-3 PO, moving the runners up to 2nd and 3rd. Troop lofted a high fly to left that caught enough wind so Lundy easily tracked it down for the second out.
But Nighter and Stuman worked walks to load the bases, the tying run on second with 2 out, Catnip up. This is the 4th bases loaded 2-out situation the Abe-rahams have had. This is the 3rd straight inning the Abe-rahams have had the bases loaded and 2-out, the second straight inning that 3T would have to pitch out of one. Catnip rolled a slow swinging bunt past 3T toward Pop at 3rd. For 82 feet, Catnip looked sure to beat it out. First base is 90 feet however, and Pop's throw nipped Kenny by an eyelash ending the game.
Special Agents 12, Young Abe-rahams 10.