Bay City vs. Saginaw • Carroll Park, Bay City, MI • September 10, 2011 • Bay City 14, Saginaw 13
The weather was gorgeous at historic, Carroll Park when the Independents welcomed the Saginaw Old Golds to play at their home grounds for only the second time in four years. The last time the Bay Citys hosted the Saginaws at this scenic park was 2008 in the Old Golds inaugural season. Bay City was fortunate enough to bring home victory in that match, but it would be the last for them against Saginaw in their next 6 tries. It was that string of defeats, including one in the Championship Match of this year’s World’s Tournament that the Independents sought cut short on this day.
The match began with the ceremonial coin toss, which was won by the Saginaws. The Old Golds chose to take the field and so left the start of the contest to the Independents who then went to striking with impudence. Tanner LeRoux led the match off with a brilliant safety, but the next hand was lost thanks to a one handed snag by the Saginaw left fielder, John “Lumberjack” Piersall. The next striker, Brian “Butterfly” Becerril launched a sky-ball to the center field that caromed off the Gold’s captain, Adam McCaully, and moved LeRoux to third while Becerril took his first. That brought Doc Garcia to the plate, and the good doctor would not disappoint sending a howitzer over the fence in right field placing the onion into the pond beyond it for a home run. After a base running mishap caused the second hand of the innings to be lost for the Bay Citys Rope Revette started up the striking again by sending a cannonaded over the left field that saw him make his second. Revette would tally on another long ball by Jason “Buttons” McInerney that brought him to second. The scoring would end there with the Independents putting four runs in the ledger.
The Saginaws would not go quietly and placed their lead striker, Lumberjack Piersall, safely on first sack. He would not stay their for long as the Saginaws Captain, Adam McCaully, fully recovered from his skull thumping shot in center field, mashed the apple deep into the long field tallying Piersall and placing himself squarely on third sack. The next striker, Scoops Larkin, would drive home McCaully with a ground ball to third base that would lose the first hand of the innings for the Golds. Thanks to some equally handy fieldwork by the Independents the next two hands would be lost in order, and the Saginaw uprising was squelched. After one innings of play the Bay Citys held the lead at 4 to 2.
In the second innings the Independents would add another tally to their total when Big Bob Escamilla made his second thanks to a branch burner sent into the trees in right field, and later scored on a safety by Tanner LeRoux. The Saginaws would score a pair of aces of their own in the second bringing the match a little closer at 5 to 4 in Bay Citys favor.
The whillow whomping continued in the third innings when Kid Garcia made his first on a stinger, and probably would have scored on the very next offering from the Saginaw pitcher if not for the heroics of the Gold’s captain, Squints McCaully. McCaully, playing his first outfield innings of the season, tore off after a muckle shot from the bat of Butterfly Becerril and nabbed the orb on a sliding catch that brought the crowd to their feet. Garcia would later tally though, as did Cat LeRoux as the Bay Citys plated two more aces.
The Golds would remain consistent however scoring two more aces thanks to a home run by John Piersall, and doubles by Squints McCaully and Logger Leppek. After three innings the match was now Bay City 7 and Saginaw 6.
The fourth innings would be the first whitewashing of the match as the Saginaw defense set down the bottom of the Bay City order. The Golds however would not be so gracious to the Independents as they would take the lead when Lumberjack Piersall drove home two more runs.
Bay City would add only one more run in the next two innings while the Saginaws continued to strike with ferocity scoring four more runs themselves. It appeared the Bay Citys were running out of steam as the match now stood at Saginaw 12 and Bay City 8.
Things were now looking bleak for Bay City in the seventh innings as Buttons McInerney strode to the plate and put some life back into the crowd with a stinger to the right center garden that struck the base of a tree and re-directed itself well out of the reach of the Saginaw defenders sending them scrambling and McInerney safely to second. The next striker in the order was no less a hero this season, Jeff “Silverback” Rahl, and he too put a charge into the Bay City bench by besting Buttons and launching the onion past the confines of the long field and making his third with ease. Dean “Sawmill” Koch would then drive home the Silverback, and later tally himself thanks to another timber shaker from the bat of Big Bob Escamilla. In all the Bay Citys would draw themselves closer in the match and the Saginaws could answer with one run in their portion thanks to Big Wheel Beemer. Little did they know it would be their last of the contest? After seven innings the total was now Saginaw 13 and Bay City 11.
In the eighth innings more familiar heroes emerged for the Independents as Butterfly Becerril sent another scorcher into the long field and made his second with ease. The next striker in the order was the hot swinging Doc Garcia who once again sent the Saginaw fieldsmen scrambling over the fence and through the trees searching for the landing spot of his latest launch. The medicine man would make his home run and the Butterfly would tally ahead of him to bring the match into a tie.
The match would remain as such at the conclusion of nine innings thanks to excellent defense by both clubs, and in a first ever occurrence at Carroll Park extra innings would be played to decide a victor. The Independents would place their lead striker in the innings, Britt Venchera, safely on first sack, but they would lose his hand at second thanks to a ground ball handled neatly by the short stop for the Golds. The effort however, would put the speedy Sean “Tanner” LeRoux on first sack. LeRoux would not stay there for long, as the next striker, Alan “Kid” Garcia used some excellent form to line the ball into right field and move LeRoux to third sack. The next striker in the order was the Butterfly, and he turned himself around to place the ball into the right side of the infield to drive home the mercurial LeRoux with the lead run.
Bay City now held a slim lead as Becerril took to the stripe for the third innings in a row hoping to replicate his whitewashing of the Golds. Ducky Mahan, apparently hobbled in the contest, would employ a runner to lead off the innings but it would be for naught as his hand was lost on the first offering of the Butterfly as it landed safely behind the striker and into the hands of Rope Revette. The next striker was the Lumberjack who had sawed his way through the Bay City defense nearly all day accounting for five runs in the contest for Saginaw. The Lumberjack would send a hot daisy-cutter to the third base man, Doc Garcia, who would then kill his hand neatly at first. The match would end perfectly for the Bay Citys as the Butterfly procured a sky ball from the bat of the Saginaw Captain that was bottled in style by his counterpart Tanner LeRoux, and bringing the crowd to its feet and the game to howling conclusion.
These two clubs will look to recapture this type of brilliant play again in two weeks time when the four top clubs in the state vie for the Championship Cup of the State of Michigan on September 24th at Carroll Park.
As of July 23, 2014
1. Sean “Tanner” LeRoux 39
2. Alan “Kid” Garcia 36
3. Jeff “Silverback” Rahl 30
4. Tom “Cat” LeRoux 25
5. Jeremy “Schoolboy” Stedry 25
1. Sean "Tanner" LeRoux 29
2. Alan "Kid" Garcia 27
3. Jeff “Silverback” Rahl 21
4. Jeremy “Schoolboy” Stedry 14
5. Tom “Cat” LeRoux 11
1. Sean "Tanner" LeRoux 3.22
2. Alan "Kid" Garcia 3.00
3. Jeff “Silverback” Rahl 2.33
4. Jeremy “Schoolboy” Stedry 1.75
5. Tom “Cat” LeRoux 1.38
1. Jeff “Silverback” Rahl 13
2. Tom “Cat” LeRoux 9
3. Alan "Kid" Garcia 7
3. Sean “Tanner” LeRoux 7
4. Aaron “The Constable” Gerken 3
1. Alan “Kid” Garcia 1.11
2. Sean “Tanner” LeRoux 1.44
3. Jeremy “Schoolboy” Stedry 1.63
4. Jeff “Silverback” Rahl 1.78
5. Jimmy “Two Quarts” Arnold 1.88