Mallards 5 (final 13 innings)
What a game. In the past week, I think we have come back from a deficit in the 8th, 9th, and 13th, and won those three games. It has been an exciting week with a lot of exciting baseball. Pinch hitting in the 10th, Mike McQuillen (Iowa) hit a two-run triple and later scored to tie the game up 4-4 and move it to the 11th. In the 13th inning, Niko Fraser (Elon) laid down a perfect bunt to score the winning run. Walkoff! We all sprinted out and tackled him in short right field. So much fun.
On arriving to the field today, around 12:30, the preparations for Rhythm and Booms were about done. There were food stands, a concert stage, a carnival, and lots of people ready for a day of hanging out. During batting practice a concert went on- a cover band that botched a lot of songs. After the game, the team showered and got ready for the largest fireworks show in the MidWest! In the down time before the show, fans packed into the stadium to watch The Rookie on our JumboTron (I don’t know what to call it, because it’s not that big) scoreboard. The picture above is when the fans were watching the movie. Also, another cool promotion we took advantage of tonight was the 1 cent movie coupons from Charter Communications. If any Mallard hits a triple at home, everyone gets one cent movie coupons, so the fans were happy about that. After my shower, I talked to Mr. Cole (my dad’s boss) who drove over from Chicago with his son Elliot. The awkward part was that I was signing autographs and I had to sign another college-aged man’s boob, while talking to my dad’s boss. Crazy fans.
I walked over to Jonathan Crawford’s (Florida) host family’s house because Michelle, his host mom, was throwing a block party for the fireworks show. His house was three blocks walk from the field. We sat there and ate some delicious pulled pork and cheesy potatoes and watched the fireworks. There was one GIANT tree that was in the way of our view of the show, but fortunately, most of the fireworks went above the tree. Suprise of the night: former Wisconsin Badger and Heisman Trophy Winner Ron Dane showed up to the party after the fireworks show. We got a picture with him- pretty cool.
My first Rhythm and Booms experience was amazing. We won the game, watched The Rookie, saw a fantastic fireworks show, and met Ron Dane. It was a night I will never forget. My only regret is that I did not get any pictures of the fireworks show because I forgot to charge my camera the night before.
The win last night pushed us to 2 games ahead of second place. We will continue to do shirtless BP today and hopefully win, getting us closer to clinching the first half. Five games are left. Home game tonight at 5:05.
^^this is an example of a “pimp job”^^
Bullfrogs 2 (16-11)
Mallards 3 (18-11)
The win last night gave us sole position of first place with six games left in the first half. Going into last night’s game, three teams were tied for first (Madison, Green Bay, and Eau Claire), and Battle Creek was 1 game behind. Since we beat Green Bay and Battle Creek beat Eau Claire, the three other teams are now 1 game behind us. The winner of the first half gets an automatic bid into the Northwoods playoffs at the end of the season.
The day started early with Kids Camp. We showed up to the field at 8:45, so it was an early morning for the players who usually go to bed around 2. The camp ranged from ages 6-12, and like all camps, some kids were good and others were not so good. The one thing the kids did not lack was energy. They were so pumped to be there in front of the Mallards’ coaches and players. I was assigned to go work with the 6 and 7 year olds, an age group I am used to working with because of teaching Sunday School in Georgia. They were distracted a lot, but we worked on the basics (playing catch, groundballs, pop flys, and hitting). Nick Sutherland (Minnesota State) worked with the kids on pop flys and with the 6 year olds he used tennis balls. After they missed a ton in a row, he told them the ball either needs to hit them in the glove or on the head, so we know that they are trying. We signed autographs and sent them on their way.
I had 3 hours to kill, so I went home. I lied down in bed, exhausted, and thought about taking a nap. Then I decided the best thing to do would be to go workout. I went to the Princeton Club and got a really good workout in, then went to the field.
Without the nap, I was even more tired when I got to the field. I found some new energy though when I found out BP was going to be shirtless. Everyone (players and coaches) had to go shirtless before we could start. It was a lot of fun and we got better and got a tan. The only time we had done this before was during early work, so no one but the team knew about it. This time, the other team showed up and saw us having fun shirtless hitting. Personally, it was one of the best BP rounds of my life. I don’t know for sure if there was a correlation.
I finally got to take my first shower of the day around 6 because I had another off day. The game was awesome. Down 1-0 in the 6th with runners on 1st and 3rd, Justin Scanlon (Michigan State) laid down a perfect two-out drag bunt that no one played and it tied up the game. Green Bay pushed ahead with a solo home run, and then in the bottom of the 8th, Nate Theunissen hit a towering two-run home run to right field. He knew it off the bat, and “pimped” the home run that eventually left the stadium. “Pimping a home run” is when the person knows they hit a home run, so they watch it fly before they start running (picture above). Prince Fielder does it a lot. My dad would kill me if I ever did that- but Theunissen made it look good.
Can’t wait for Rhythm and Booms tomorrow night! There will be more than 100,000 people in Werner Park during the day and our game will be sold out. After the game, the largest fireworks display in the Midwest will take place. Apparently it takes 3 hours to get out of the parking lot, so I will try to find an alternate parking situation. Shirtless BP will be a must for tomorrow.
^^cool car in front of our field^^
Rafters 5 (3-14)
Mallards 7 (10-7)
Today was my day off. If you have seen the SNL Digital Short “Lazy Sunday,” it was like that but on Saturday. I woke up at noon because my body needed the rest. I ate my two peanut butter and banana waffles and watched some baseball before leaving for the field. It is like I breathe, eat, and sleep baseball right now.
I went to the field for early groundball work and it payed off. The team had 0 errors on the night. I showered before the game and got ready to cheer the team. In the game, Jordan Owen (UT Martin) had two massive home runs which kept us in the game. In the 7th, we tied the game up with a hit from Justin Scanlon (MSU). In the bottom of the 8th, score tied 5-5, with runners at second and third, Trey Watkins (LSU) was about to have his debut. Trey flew into Madison today and showed up just before gametime- he was not expecting to get up. He took no batting practice and took no practice swings, and there he stood in the box with the biggest at bat of the night. Trey checked his swing and looked ugly on the second pitch, and then the pitcher buried a curveball, scoring the runner from third. On the next pitch, Trey ripped a single to left and we won 7-5!
Tonight was the first night that we had fireworks! After the team meeting, everyone just laid down in the outfield to watch the show. Mostly all of the fans had stayed because of the close game and for the fireworks- so it was an electric atmosphere the whole night. We broke a two-game losing streak and plan to get another win against Wisconsin Rapids tomorrow. Also after the game, in the autograph session, I signed my first boob- it was a guy’s. It was completely awkward, but I did it anyways. Fans are crazy.