Game 9 Recap Reds @ Yankees
Grassy Plains Park ParkUpdated Friday June 16, 2017 by Jeff Carrie.
A very evenly matched game tonight. Both sides showed off strong pitching and solid defense.
The field is not usually used by the league, so there were a few challenges to deal with, but the rain held off and the players put on a show for the crowd.
Daniel set the tone early with a 1-2-3 inning, but the Reds defense would prove solid all night.
Ben’s lead off single was countered with two quick strike-outs, but then Josh launched a double over the heads of the outfielders to score Ben with the first run of the game. Ethan slapped a hard liner to second base, but the Reds’ defense swallowed it up and threw to first to end the inning.
In the top of the second, the Yankee defense added their own highlight to the reel as Daniel fielded a comebacker and sailed a ball towards first. Isaac stretched up high to snag the ball, holding on to first base with the tips of his toes to make the out. Daniel picked up another K and once again the Reds were down in order. Ken had an excellent at-bat, fouling off several two-strike pitches before finally missing one. Daniel walloped a one-out single but could not beat out the subsequent fielder’s choice. The Reds’ pitcher picked up a strike-out of his own to close out the second inning.
As we moved to the third inning, the Reds knew they’d have to take advantage of every opportunity in such a close game. The clouds were looming and the first light drops of rain fell from the sky. Dexter hustled to beat the throw on an infield single.
Ben snagged a line drive for the second out and whipped the ball to Ethan, in an attempt to double off the base-runner, but the throw was not in time. The Reds put together back to back singles and thanks to some strong base running, they scored the tying run. Great work by the outfield (Ken, Kai, and Finley) to hold the other base-runners in place. With the force available at every base, Ben snagged the next grounder and slapped the tag on the runner trying to advance from first.
The Yankees threatened in the bottom of the third thanks to Kai’s lead-off single and Ben’s one-out double. Sam S was awarded first base after being hit with a pitch, but the threat was extinguished by the Reds on two straight Ks.
The Reds led off the top of the fourth when Sam singled to left-field. Jake continued his strong defensive play from last game hustling to the ball and holding the runner to a single base. Ethan scooped up a grounder to the right side for an unassisted out at first base. Ken made a valiant effort on a fly ball to short only to watch the ball skip out of the pocket of his glove. None the less, he kept the runner at second from advancing. Josh responded with a strike out and then Daniel made a heads up play knocking down a hard grounder to the right side and tagging the runner racing towards second. The Yankees did a great job of putting the ball into play in the bottom of the fourth as Ken singled and advance to third, but the Red Curtain fell on the infield, picking up force outs and second and first to keep the score tied. Sam B showed great hustle to make the play close at first, but the Reds were up to the task.
Both teams struggled to find a timely hit. Finley came in to pitch the top of the fifth, ending the top half with a strike-out, to give his team a chance to win. It would not have been surprising for tonight’s contest to end in a tie, but the Yankees were primed to strike in the bottom half of the inning. Kai’s lead-off single put the pressure on the Reds batters, but Jake’s excitement could not be transferred from the bat to the ball.
Ben collected his third hit of the game, but the Reds defense quickly fielded the ball, holding Kai at second. Sam S reached first to load the bases with one out. Finley pounced on a two-strike pitch which the Reds quickly tracked down, but there was not enough time to turn a double play as Kai raced home with the winning run. Thanks to the Reds for allowing us to finish our at-bats, as a fielder’s choice from Josh tacked on an extra run.
Thanks to the rain clouds for holding off until later tonight. And as always, thanks to the families for coming out to support the athletes.
Great job by both teams. I’m looking forward to our second game together this Saturday morning.