Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Baseball Review //
River Valley Orioles 5, South Windsor Phillies 2
[10/24/20 @ Nevers Park, South Windsor, CT]

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This was the second game of the doubleheader on this day.  In between the two games my dad took Quentin over to get us lunch at Dairy Queen.  Also, during the first game (and most of the second game) Quentin had been chasing down the foul balls for the Phillies so their coach gave him five dollars for his efforts, which was really nice.   The Orioles and Phillies had never played each other before this though it does look like a GHTBL game (luckily this was not the Vernon Orioles)  It was also similar to the Phillies-Millers match up in the way that it was consisting of top teams and at the time they went into this game both teams only had one loss.

To the credit of the Phillies it is not easy to win a doubleheader especially if you're playing against different teams.  Most of the Phillies roster had already been through seven innings when the Orioles were coming in fresh.   The way I've always seen the Connecticut Fall League as well is that each team plays only once a week and in that sense you only need one strong pitcher.  So when you think about there being pitchers for the Phillies in this game who aren't that guy going up against a pitcher for the Orioles who is that guy (but isn't Mike Lord) then it also doesn't seem quite fair.

This game started off with two innings of scoreless ball which made you feel like it was going to be a low scoring game.  In the top of the third inning, a runner for the Orioles managed to go all the way from first base to third base when the Phillies were out of position and no one was there to guard the base.   On a passed ball that runner would score to put the Orioles up 1-0 after three innings.   The Orioles did that thing where they put together solid little hits to get another run in the top of the fifth inning to give them a 2-0 lead.   

The Phillies, however, saw this as an invitation to respond to being down 2-0 by Jake Petrozza hitting a deep shot to center field for a triple which scored two and made it a tie ball game.  This is the excitement- this is the suspense and drama that makes baseball so much fun to watch.  It felt like such a stalemate, then the Orioles went up a little bit at a time, only to have it all not matter just like that- just that quickly.   All that work they did in how much time all undone in an instant.

There was a great diving catch by the Orioles leftfielder to end the fifth inning and it just might have been the play of the game.   Travis Ferguson came in to pitch in the seventh inning and he loaded the bases on walks.   This would ultimately lead to the Orioles scoring the final three runs of the game and the Phillies just not being able to come back from it.  One thing which was kind of funny to me though was that the player # 1 from the Orioles got upset about a strike call while at bat and was arguing with the umpire a lot.  Then when he went to pitch he got called on a balk.  I'm not saying he only got called on the balk because he was yelling at the umpire but, you know, these things don't always help each other.

With this game, the Phillies move on to face the Canton Crushers in the first round of the playoffs.   The Phillies have been sitting atop the league for most of the time and the Crushers have- to put it bluntly- not won a single game.   There is still that idea of maybe the Crushers were figuring it out up until now and they're going to surprise everyone in the playoffs, but if I was a betting man I'd bet on the Phillies to defeat them.   Whoever wins between the Phillies and Crushers moves on to face the Gators and that's going to be quite the game as well.   I don't know how they've done it but the Connecticut Fall League has really managed to make the best possible matchups for the playoffs and if you're not watching them then you must not love baseball.


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