|Somebody wake these bats up!|
The prophetic Bubba was asking, nay, beseeching for pitching, and he got it. Connor Russell had a great game, giving up only three hits and three walks in eight full innings of work. Ryan Keller finished things off in the ninth retiring the three batters that he faced. Unfortunately for the 'Cats, Wenatchee pitching was just as formidable as Beau Kerns upped his record to 3-2 with a nice seven inning stint in which he allowed five hits and three walks. The net is, Victoria actually outpitched the Sox on this night but still wound up with the L.
So...pitching (see above) - check. Fielding (no errors) - check. Outhitting opponent again - check. Clutch hitting...uhhh...big buzzer sound indicating NO! Really, that was all that was missing tonight and after generating only one run in the last three games, this is still an area of great concern. In the bottom of the fifth, Victoria loaded the based with one out but could just not get the hit that they needed. For a change, their fielding was excellent, even gunning out a runner at home in the top of the seventh on an attempted safety squeeze. There was a minor base running error in the 'Cats half of the seventh where a baserunner was hit by a batted ball but still that was inconsequential, it all comes down to the big base hit when needed.
The positives out of this game were many - pitching was solid, fielding was great but clutch hitting will kill this team if they don't turn it around. My worry is that this is snowballing now and getting into the batters' heads. But there are still two more games before the All Star break and we know that these boys can play with the AppleSox of the league so here's to hoping they use these last two games to turn things around and put up a few more crooked numbers.
As an aside, did you hear the Darrrrrrrrrrrrr chants getting even louder. And can we have some more Pirates of the Caribbean walk up music maybe? Speaking of music, I don't see Trevor Hoffman, so can we move away from the Hells Bells at every pitching change? Let's pick something unique to welcome our 'Cats relievers - any suggestions out there? Runnin' with the Devil? Bawitdiba? Shoot to Thrill?
Anyway, two more games in the set. Let's turn it around tomorrow. With Conant "the Barbarian" on the bump, I'm guaranteeing a HarbourCats win! If not, drinks are on Bubba!