Following 2 defeats on the spin our next game against the Mob was going to be a challenge to say the least. With Chris deputising as captain in Neil’s absence it was down to Chris to organise the team. This was no easy task with Baldeep and Gids injured, Lorraine awol and Pirates dropping out by the hour. Fortunately we were able to call on the services of trusty Viene again and Shorty was able to escape work and shake off his injury which enabled up to play 6-6. With the evening looking distinctly gloomy with a hint of rain it was time to begin.
Shorty (RC), Josie (LF), Chris(SS), Marines (RF), Dave (P), Alice (1), Bola (3/DH), Shaz (C/DH), Sohan (3/DH), Viene (DH/C) Phil (LC), Nadine (2)
The Mob are known as a team who like to hit and that’s exactly how they started. With two runners on base their versatile third batter hit a great shot to the right field, picking up a home run and 3 RBIs before the throw from Shorty made it back in. Gulp!- 3 runs from their first 3 batters but whilst their guys certainly knew exactly where to hit the girls were not quite so sharp. Next thing you know they are two down following some great defence from the infield but at the same time the bases are loaded for their BIG hitter, who absolutely smacks the ball high and far into the outfield. More precisely straight into the outfield but into the path of Phil’s glove who shows great composure to take a difficult catch. Side out with bases loaded and only one additional run conceded!
With Shorty in his customary lead of position it was time to bat and bat we did with Shorty firing off a lovely Home Run with his first hit, followed by Chris following suit and hitting his own Homer giving us 2 runs but also we had 2 outs. And then it happened! The legendary two down Pirate rally which saw Dave make second, Alice make second, Bola make third (then his own Home Run after forcing the throw which bounced off his bum to go dead), followed by Shaz, So, Viene, Phil all making first before going back to the top of the order with Nads and Shorty both making second before Josie was unlucky to be caught out.
BOOOOOOM! 10 runs scored in our best rally of the season.
Mob 4, Pirates 10
Clearly our rally rattled the Mob as they were completely unable to respond. If they weren’t being caught by Phil, then they were being out thrown to first by Chris and even pitched out by Dave. Something was clearly working as they were all out with just the one run scored.
Next up it’s Pirate time and Chris first to bat. Clearly not content with just one home run so far Chris cracks the ball right field and duly picks up his second homer of the game! With Marines so close on running to first it was Dave’s turn to pick up his Home Run before Alice was caught out on a great shot by their pitcher and Shaz was then struck out trying to hit the edge of the diamond.
Mob 5, Pirates 12
At 12-5 up an air of nervousness seemed to sweep over the Pirates. Not only did Nads bionic arm blast the ball over Alice’s head but the next shot pearolled under Alice’s glove and the Mob were starting to hit. Once again their third batter hit right field for his second home run and it seemed the fight back was on. At least that’s how it looked but the Pirates regained our composure with Nads throwing perfectly to Alice for the out, Bola taking a thumping catch at third followed by the piece de resistance- Phil’s run, jump and catch to take stop their base loaded home run again. It so easily could have been catch of the season if only Phil had performed a ‘Chris roll’ after the catch. Hang your head in shame Phil!!
Clearly egged on by the catch Sohan easily made first on his bat (though almost slipping over in the process), before Viene was out running to first. It was left to Phil to deliver Sohan safely home, followed by Nadine who sent Phil home (also slipping and half killing himself running over the home plate) before she was out running to second. Mr Consistent made second before Josie showed great Pirate resolve to bounce back from her previous innings and to make first before Chris (of all people) was called out running to first. Let’s just say he mildly disputed the call (he was safe) but with only one blue on the night there weren’t going to be any arguments over plays this time (more to the point the blue was a nice guy).
Mob 7, Pirates 14
It was now Sohan’s turn to get some time on the field as he replaced Bola at third. Clearly the Mob thought their luck was in with the most vocal pirate off the pitch but of course they were wrong as Bola got busy on the side of the pitch, whilst at the same time Paul arrived to help out. Once again they hit well but we were able to pick them off with some fast plays in the field including a nice tag from Chris as the Mobster tried to run about 2 metres outside the lines, a strike out and a throw to Alice on first. 3 runs scored though so the onus was back on us to deliver a few more runs and maintain our lead.
This time it was Marines to lead off who made a great play to first. At this point their short shop had moved so far back to tackle us that he was practically in the outfield which worked quite well as they were able to take out our lead runner twice before Alice hit a cracking shot followed by Bola and Shazza. Quite how Shaz ended up running from first to third was anyone’s guess but in doing so she surprised everyone including herself as she wasn’t tagged running in and overran the base. Not even a dive back on to base could prevent her from being called for the third out with two runs scored.
Mob 10: Pirates 16
6 runs in it now and with light rain and dull skies it was looking less than ideal playing conditions. Lucky for us the mob found it tough going as we recorded a shut out against them thanks to some more great plays in the infield including another strike out as well as some fast relays in the outfield to nail the lead runner.
Unfortunately our glory innings were short lived as the Mob gave it right back to us with only Phil making it home after Shorty fired him home after Viene was out running to first, Nadine out running to third off Chris’s hit and Josie was struck out courtesy of an increasingly large strike zone.
Mob 10; Pirates 17
We were now approaching another phase of squeaky bum time as the rain started to become heavier. Once again the Pirates defended superbly especially Chris’ nuts as they held the lead runner (not literally- scratch that image from your head) after the ball bounced squarely into his. After taking a minute to compose himself it was back to business as usual with Nads and Alice combining to take the last out, with only one run scored.
Sensing victory was well within our grasp the Pirates set about scoring some runs with Marines leading off with a monster of a hit to make second, (subsequently earning her the Bola award for aggression in the box), followed by a second base hit from Dave, 1st base from Alice, Bola, Sohan, Viene and Nadine. Once again it was left to Shorty to deliver on the pressure shot (Bola and Dave covered their eyes) and once again he hit a beauty to pick up the RBIs before we were all out with 6 runs scored.
Mob 11, Pirates 23
It had almost been too easy for the Pirates up till this point. All we needed was three outs and the game was over but suddenly the Mob found their feet and started to hit. Just like the first innings when everything went so right for the Pirates the luck seemed to swing their way with each ball bobbling bouncing awkwardly to hit Chris all over (not his nuts at least this time). Not only did they get a walk to help them out but their big hitter finally managed to hit the ball beyond the reaches of Phil to delivery the Grand Slam home run. On top of that Dave made life that much harder but not taking out the lead runner with an easy pass to second (rule no. 4- always take out the lead runner), opting instead for the play at first.
Two out, 11 runs scored by the mob with one run needed to draw even- you could cut the atmosphere with a knife. Could we hang on just long enough to take the last out and avoid batting? Luckily for us we didn’t need to bat again as Dave was able to redeem himself with a diving catch to take the last out (no roll though). Game over and what a game!
Mob 22, Pirates 23
MVP: Phil (1000%, home run, 5 RBIs)
Runner up: Bola
Defensive award; Phil (great jumping catch)
Runners up; Dave, Bola
Bola award: Marines aka the scorned women showing Bola like aggression in the box
Shaz of the day: Over running third base and diving head first to get back on it
Batting: 1000% Shorty, Dave, Sohan, Bola, Nadine
0.75: Chris, Alice