There are just some days where not much happens- today was one of those days. I woke up, ate breakfast, and got to the field at 1 to do some early work. In early work I long tossed for the 4th time this week! Usually when I’m in season I long toss 0 times a week, and I only did once this whole spring, but everyone on this team wants to, and I can feel my arm getting a lot stronger already. After early work, we had shirtless BP, but unfortunately today it did not help us win. I really hope we continue doing shirtless BP, but because we lost, I doubt we will. Regardless, we are on the road for the next five games and we can’t do it there, so it is not an issue.
Tonight was Military Appreciation Night at the game. Before the game the announcer told the families who have lost a son or daughter in the recent wars to stand up and my heart broke for them. We take for granted how hard they are working overseas to keep us safe and protect the lives of Americans. We are truly blessed. We got camo uniforms/ t-shirts for the game that looked pretty cool. During the game they did a silent auction for the shirts and raised over $2000 for some organization- I didn’t hear which one. But with doing the math, that is an average of $75 per t-shirt.
It was also Bark in the Park Night- the second one we have experienced this year. The first was in Battle Creek and a ton of people brought their dogs to the game. Tonight, not a huge percentage of the crowd brought their dogs, but the dogs that were there were really cool. We saw a mix between an English Mastiff and a St. Bernard, this thing was 170 pounds and only 18 months old (a baby). My favorite dog of the night was definitely the Goldendoodle. I really hope to get one some day.
Today was Big Dog’s, our manager, birthday. We got him a card and some cake that we helped him eat after the game. He had a great time on his birthday and was smiling all day. He told us “his rules” again- which was probably the 8th time I had heard them, but they still got the whole team cracking up. If I ever write a book, all of his rules will be included. After the celebration I got in a really good legs/abs/forearms lift with Dan Tobik (UT Martin) and I am going to be really sore tomorrow.
Tonight was another classic case of an amazing sunset in Madison. Leaving for Eau Claire tomorrow at 1130. Early morning lift before.
I need a haircut,
Loggers 9 final 14 innings
Today marked our 23rd game in 24 days- we’ve had one rain out. Words cannot begin to describe tonight’s game, but I will try. In the cool, buggy La Crosse, WI night, we played a 4.5 hour game that lasted 14 innings. Per usual, we got out in front of the Loggers early in the game, but sat on our lead. They passed us and made the game close to unreachable at 9-4 in the 7th, but good teams figure out ways to win. We scored five in the last three innings and forced extra innings. Both teams had numerous opportunities to take the lead or win the game, but no team did until Willie Argo (Illinois) knocked a leadoff single in the top of the 14th. He scored on a ball Jordan Owen hit off the pitcher’s glove and we held on to win 11-9. Due to the length of the game, La Crosse decided to cancel the post game fireworks show. I feel bad for the kids that stayed the whole game for the fireworks. Tonight’s weird occurrences go from a bunny on the field stopping the game to Tony Bryant (Oregon State) getting his first appearance in the 13th inning. It was a less than ideal time to bring Bryant in for the first time, but we had run out of relievers, so he got called on and pitched great.
One thing I noticed about the Loggers was that their team has gotten much better since the first time we played them in early June. At the begging of the summer, their pitching wasn’t bad, but their average pitcher was 84-88 mph. Tonight we got to see what happens when the permanent guys show up after NCAA postseason play. They threw guys from Texas, Oregon, Florida Gulf Coast, and other schools that are consistently in the top 50. Besides their sidearm righty, they pitched 2 righties and 2 lefties that were 90-93. From this point on, these are what the summer pitchers we will face will be around. As for our team, we have had our share of great arms from the beginning, but we are adding some pitchers from teams like Oregon State, Texas A&M, and Florida to make our rotation even more solid.
I also found out that my teammate at Davidson, Chris Lamb, will be coming to play for the Mallards. Chris is a left-handed starting pitcher and throws around 90-92. He had originally signed on for the summer, but was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 11th round. He decided not to sign currently and will be coming to Madison in a day or two. I am pumped!
I usually like to replay my at bats in my head, visualizing what pitchers did to me, so I can learn and become a better hitter, but I had eight at bats tonight and I will have trouble remembering them all. Wish me luck! Two and a half hour bus ride back- Lord of the Rings is on. I will be sleeping. First off day is on the 26th, I still have no clue what to do. Probably lift.