How do you even begin to describe this game against the Voodoos (or Voodicks as they are now more fondly known)? With the Pirates on a run of three victories in a row and the Dicks languishing at the bottom of the league at 0-4 it looked as this was going to be a walk in the park. Of course what we think will happen and what does happen are sometimes very different!
As with the majority of games so far this season we were once again short of girls as both Alice and Nadine were absent forcing us to play 5-5 again with Dave and Chris on substitute duty for Neil and Gideon.
Dave (LCF sub Neil), Baldeep (2), Chris (SS sub Bola), Shazza (RF), Sohan (1B), Josie (3B), Gids (P sub), Marines (LF), Phil (RCF), Merin (C)
After having a friendly word with the catcher who insisted on positioning himself up the batter’s arse we were able to begin with Dave leading off and making second with a line drive. Even with Baldeep out it there didn’t seem to be any cause for concern with Chris up to bat until, for the first time ever, Chris was called out for stepping on the plate! The protest was immediately dismissed by the Blue who happened to be former Pirate FAG (friend and groupie) Mitch. For reasons unknown (unless Neil can elaborate), he seemed to be hell bent to bringing the World Series rule book to division 5. Two out and both Shaz and Sohan made base before unfortunately Josie was struck out. Zero runs scored and 3 left on base. Ouch!
As Neil was on the bench it was Gideon’s turn to start pitching and in doing so immediately fell foul of Mitch’s strike zone. What looked to be fair strikes were called balls and the Voodoos started to load the bases and drive in the runs. luckily their rally was brought to an end with catches in the outfield from Phil and Dave.
Voodoos 4, Pirates 0
It was clear that this was not going to be a friendly game as Gideon was dismissed by Mitch for throwing that bat backwards. Just a few weeks earlier Bola had almost killed half the team with a similar move yet in this case Gideon was called out. Perhaps the call was made as the Voodick catcher once again insisted on positioning himself right up close to Gid’s derrière in a blatant attempt to put him off. This plan definitely had some merit with both Marines and Merin struck out leaving Phil left on base with zero runs scored. What the hell was going on??
In a near repeat of the first innings the Voodoos we’re able to pile on the misery as they batted through the order, scoring another 5 runs before we could finally catch them out. At 9-0 to the voodoos we were in uncharted territory and things were about to get worse. Much worse.
Pirates 0, Voodoos 9
Top of the order again and Dave makes first though picks up an extra base and nice bruise thanks to an overthrow to the shin. With a baldeep unfortunately out running to first again it was left to Chris to bring in the runs through his third home run of the season. At last we were on the scoreboard but the pressure was back on as Shaz was struck out, leaving Sohan next to bat.
And then it happened- another contentious moment for the Pirates as Sohan was called out for not running to second after running through first base. According to our highly professional Blue, Sohan had turned towards second after running through first, hence the call, which of course was backed up by the idiot BASU qualified catcher. Tempers were already frayed to say the least with Sohan arguing the call where upon Neil took it upon himself to remonstrate with Mitch uttering the famous words:” I ain’t having that”, followed by some choice words to Mitch which, from a distance, sounded like ‘you’re upfront Mitch’.
It’s highly possible that he said something else to Mitch as he reacted badly with his own choice words, shouting “You’re out of here!” complete with the sending off arm movement. It was as if he had waited his entire life to deliver that line though it was wasted on Neil who didn’t hear.
Didn’t hear hey Neil?? Don’t worry as Mitch yelled “You’re out of here!” again only this with double the arm movement. Pandemonium is the best word that can be used to describe the next 5 minutes as the rest of the pirates asked to Mitch to reconsider. clearly he enjoyed this power- perhaps it was revenge for the wannabe pirate jokes, Nad’s rejection, tight short jokes- the list goes on?
With order restored and some more discussions between the blues eventually decided to allow Neil back into to the game. There was of course a condition- that he kept his mouth shut and that Chris would be acting Captain. Needless to say that offer, whilst challenging was accepted.
Finally the game could continue with the Voodoos picking up another two runs before poor Merin at catch took a spinning ball to the lip. Not much fun but showing Pirate spirit she was able to continue the game in the outfield and Shaz got to regain her beloved catch position. Luckily the rest of the outfield was still awake and were able to make some nice catches as well as impressive relays from Marines to Chris to hold the Voodoos for only 2 runs.
Voodoos 11, Pirates 2
With Neil on as pitcher and Bola on as short stop (replacing Dave and Chris respectively) it was time to fight back. From out of nowhere we suddenly rallied thanks to great hits from Josie, Gids, Marines, Phil, Merin, Neil, Baldeep, Bola then Sohan before Josie was narrowly beaten by the pitcher running to first. 7 runs scored!!
Sensing the tables could be turning the Pirates tuned their previous aggression straight into the defence with Neil performing a one man show by striking out one voodoo, then shaking off a dropped bobble catch by striking out the next two hapless voodoos for a shutout.
Voodoos 11, Pirates 9
The Pirates were right back in it though not quite everything went to plan- Gids was called out for the second time for throwing the bat backwards!! Bloody Mitch and his health and safety rules. Luckily that didn’t affect Marines who hit a bomb, followed by Phil making first leaving Neil to pick up the RBIs through a home run before Baldeep was taken out running to first.
For the first time in the game we had taken the lead against the Voodoos and they were not happy. Despite a great stop from Josie on third, some great back up with Neil throwing in to Sohan AND Bola’s fake throw to first and subsequent tag out on second it wasn’t enough as the Voodoos picked up 4 runs by carefully placing their hits. This game was far from over.
Voodoos 15, Pirates 12
Bola’s time to lead off now. Not content with his defensive play of the day he hit a great shot and followed it up with a long slide to second. Lucky he was wearing long pants (hey Sohan), who was nursing a nasty friction burn from the previous innings. It was left to Josie to bring Bola home as this time she outran the Voodoo’s moody pitcher before we were all out for one run.
Two runs in it now but this time we were able to record another shut out through another strike out from Neil as well as a great catch from Bola followed by a play from Bola to Baldeep to take the runner out on second. Go Bola!!
Voodoos 15, Pirates 13
Once again the momentum had shifted back towards the Pirates especially after Phil notched up his second home run of the season. Shame the bases weren’t loaded as no sooner had Phil scored his home run the Neil picked up his second after forcing an error on first base then third, before Baldeep was caught on a big hit followed by Shaz out running to first. Soooo close but at least we were level- all we had to do is get them out again with no runs scored.
With Chris back in the field and taking the first catch, followed by another strike out for Neil it was officially squeaky bum time. Neil was definitely on a revenge mission as he made the most risky of plays- intentional walk to bring in the Voodoo catcher to bat. Bases now loaded all the pressure was on the batter who of course gave it the big one only to be struck out! C’mon Pirates Neil shouted.
Voodoos 15, pirates 15
For the second time ever we entered a tie break. Shaz was allowed to start on second to speed the game up and it looked as if she would remain there with Sohan struck out, Josie out on first before Gids held onto the bat long enough to deliver her home for the all important run.
This time around the Voodoos we’re taking no chances and neither were the blues. Sohan clearly caught the ball with foot on the base but while the matter was debated the sneaky runner made it home to level the score. Chris took another great catch to take the second out and then, combining with Baldeep looked to have made a great play to take out the runner to second base, except the ball popped out the glove as he ran into her? Deliberately maybe or possible interference you might think but no way the Blues would agree to that. That changed everything as the next hit to right field sealed our fate as the runner came home.
GUTTED. Beaten by the Voodicks.
Voodoos 17, Pirates 16
MVP: Joint winners – Bola and Phil
Defensive play: Bola for fake throw and tag
Runners up: Chris, Neil
Bola award: ??
Shaz of the day: running from second to home to secure what should have been the winning run