We have a winner! We have TWO winners! Voltaire correctly identified Louis Sockalexis as the Native American for whom the Indians eventually took their team name. Sockalexis was the first Native American to play professional baseball in the majors. Voltaire wins a 2002 Leaf Rookies and Stars Statistical Standout Paul Konerko game-used Jersey card! MMosley correctly listed the Indians with retired numbers and identified the players that go along with those numbers. For his cheating, er, searching ability, he wins a 2001 Pacific Private Stock Authentic game-used gear jersey of Rey Ordonez! Congratulations to both of you!
Round 1 Match 5 - Voltaire is up in the bottom of the fifth with two outs, a runner on third, and trailing 7-8 behind Erin. I am pretty confident that this game will end tonight. The question that has remained now for five innings is: who is going home? Voltaire sticks with his "bat 'em in order" strategy and chooses Number 10 to come to the plate. The pitcher wipes her brow. She takes the sign and throws a fastball that the batter gets a piece of but sends it foul. The 0-1 pitch comes down but it misses its mark for a ball. The 1-1 toss is hit foul into the stands. The hometown crowd is on its feet! The pitcher throws but can't find the edge of the plate and she chalks up another ball. The count is evened up with that throw. The next pitch is WAY inside, narrowly missing the batter, who spins out of the way. It's a full count in the bottom of the fifth. If the batter gets a hit or can manage a walk, he'll bring in the game-tying score. If the pitcher can find her mark, she could end the game right here.
The pitcher winds up and throws. It's an inside fastball that cuffs that batter for a called strike three! The Orioles WIN! The ORIOLES WIN! Holy cow, talk about coming down to the wire! Erin was able to keep Voltaire from scoring that runner on third, ending the game 8-7 in five innings!
That was truly an incredible game! Congratulations to both of you for putting on a GREAT show! Erin will take her Orioles (or whatever team she chooses) to play against ChrisB in Round 2. She moves on with a 2007 UD SPx Winning Materials Jim Edmonds Game-used card (serial #41/50)! Voltaire, who takes home a prize for answering the trivia question correctly, takes home a 2006 Allen & Ginter Johan Santana Game-used mini card!
Now that Round One is over, I will post scans of the game cards and prizes on Labor Day.
Round 2 Match 1 - Welcome to the bottom of the second inning here in Match1 of Round 2, where Joey and his Rangers are behind Chris(M)'s Giants three to nothing. Let's see how #20 Jeff Kunkel performs here. The Giants pitcher throws an off-speed pitch to start things off, and the batter sends it back...way back! That ball is OUTTA HERE for a lead-off home run! The Rangers are down by two as #28 David Murphy comes to the plate. The pitcher throws, and Murphy knocks the ball over the pitcher, bouncing over second base for a base hit. The game-tying run comes to the plate. A home run here and the Rangers are right back in it. And if you need to be in this position, you just might want #32 Josh Hamilton batting for you. Un-be-freakin-lieveable! Hamilton sends the ball into the upper deck for a no-out, two-run, game-tying banger!
The Giants are beside themselves. Can they pull themselves together? #15 Gerald Laird is betting they won't as he comes up to bat. The pitcher throws and the batter hits the ball to the shortstop who easily throws Laird out at first. One out, no one on base, and the score is tied at three. Joey signals for #27 Frank Catalonotto to bat next. The pitcher has lost all sense of location and ends up walking the batter in four pitches. Chris(M) is trying to keep the wheels on here. Perhaps a new pitcher should be called in. Let's see how he does against #9 Hank Blalock. He takes a deep breath. Here's the pitch. The batter swings and misses. The next pitch and Blalock checks his swing... or does he? It's called a ball, but unlike a recent similar situation which led to the ejection of a manager, the call simply stands on its own merit. The 1-1 pitch comes down and the batter swings through it for strike two. Blalock can't find the next pitch and strikes out.
That's two outs here in the bottom of the second inning. The Giants and Rangers are tied, and the Rangers have a runner on first.
Joey, feel free to select SIX BATTERS and see if they can keep your team alive here: 05, 13, 14, 16, 17, 21, 22, 25, 26, 29, 30, 31
Round 2 Match 2 - Madding leads Dayf as we go into the top of the second inning. The Cardinals have 3 runs and Dayf's Nonames have 1 run here in Round Two action. The Cardinals send in Number 16 (Chris Duncan) to lead things off. The first pitch is off the mark for a ball. The pitcher throws and gets the batter to pop the ball up to center for the first out of the inning. Number 29 (Chris Carpenter) walks up to the plate as Dayf's pitcher stares him down. Both players set. The pitcher throws. The ball is fouled off behind the plate. Carpenter gets ready for the next pitch. The pitcher hurls the ball and gets the batter swinging a pitch that is low and outside. Carpenter is not in a good position here, having fallen behind 0-2. The next pitch is fouled off and the batter stays in there. The pitcher tries a slider, but it misses for ball one. The pitcher flings the next on in there and gets Carpenter out swinging. Two outs, bases empty. Here's Number 19 (Tyler Johnson) in to try and turn things around this inning.
The first pitch to Johnson is WAY outside. Maybe the pitcher thought he was going to intentionally walk the batter. The next pitch finds it mark, though, and the batter takes strike one. The next pitch hangs just a bit too long, and Johnson sends a laser shot over the right-center field fence for a home run! The Cardinals advance their lead to three runs. After a moment of contemplation, Madding directs Number 24 (Rick Ankiel) to grab a bat. He swings at the first pitch and chops the ball out to right field for a base hit! The Cards are making a two-out showing here today, which seems to be the theme of the tournament in general. Number 27 (Ron Villone) jogs out of the dugout and steps into the batter's box. He takes a cue from Ankiel and sends the ball into the outfield for another single. That's two men on with two outs. Dayf eyes his pitcher. Should he be taken out of the game? Let's see how Number 22 (Felipe Lopez) fares against him. The pitcher throws a splitter that gets Lopez swinging, sending the ball into shallow right. The fielder grabs the ball and retires the side, but not before the Cards were able to add another run to the board.
Dayf comes up to bat next, as we head into the bottom of the second inning. He's trailing 4-1, but as we have seen plenty in this tournament, no one is ever down-and-out!
Dayf, select your SIX BATTERS: 01, 02, 04, 06, 09, 10, 14, 15, 17, 20, 23, 26, 30, 31, 32
Round 2 Match 3 - ChrisB now faces Erin's Orioles here in the 2nd round. He's already got 1 out, 1 run, and a runner on base.
ChrisB, select SIX BATTERS from all 32 except for 07, 12, and 23 (you've already played those).