June 28th, 2020
On a beautiful night at Tobey Park, the HDL Cardinals out played the HDL Athletics by a score of 14-4.
The first official game of the 2020 HDL Baseball Season was exciting to watch. The HDL players finally had a chance to escape the “doom and gloom” of this crazy “New Normal” caused by an invisible enemy of the human experience as we have been accustomed to for most all of our childhood and adult lives.
Playing baseball is such a huge part of the lives of anyone who has ever played the game. I could go on & on about the psychological impact of this sport but I will forego any pontification (…to deliver oracular utterances or dogmatic opinions) and stick to talking about the games that were played this week.
The Athletics played 12 players and looked strong at every position. Manager Carlos Varela drafted a mix of experienced HDL veterans and some highly talented rookies and reliable returnees. In the first inning the A’s sent 5 batters to the plate and took advantage of some rare Base-on-Balls from Cardinal pitcher, Wes Hill. Once the A’s were on-base they applied their athletic speed to steel 3 bases to score 2 early runs. Wes Hill worked out of the jam by striking out Jake Hatchett and Joel Fumero. Kevin Latham’s RBI ground ball helped push across the A’s 2nd run.
The Cardinals responded in the bottom of the first with 3 runs by bringing 7 batters to the plate. Athletics starting pitcher, Carlos Perez, made his HDL debut and threw a variety of pitches to show he should get better and better the more he gets accustomed to HDL hitters.
The Cardinal’s starting lineup displayed the talent that Manager, Robert Miller has assembled to represent the legacy of the HDL Cardinal franchise. Each team only managed 4 hits during the 6 inning game that ended after the time limit. While the final score was 14-4, the lopsided score was caused by an over-abundance of wild throws of ground balls that never gave the First baseman of the A’s a chance to make an “out” on the play. In total, the A’s had 6 errors while the Cardinals only had 1 error and it was a wild pitch by their pitcher. Combine errors with 6 walks and a Hit Batter, it doesn’t take long to score 14 runs. Cardinals pitchers were rotated into the game to give them a chance to work on their mechanics so they will be effective in future games. (All teams need to consider this approach) The hitting stars for the Cards were Tyler Dunn and Will Wilson who each had 3 hits and together scored 5 runs.
This game was just as impressive as the first game as each team’s roster of players were raring to go and play some baseball. The weekend threats of rain were never a factor. All teams players arrived early and went through their pre-game stretching and warm-ups, just like they do in the big leagues.
The Giants were the Home Team. Giants Starting Pitcher, Brandon Poyner, was greeted by the Royals lineup who got base hits from Alex Vivas, Carlos Gotera and Amauris Rivas. Getting out of the first inning only giving up 1 run was good.
In the bottom of the 1st, Alex Vivas, who had little or no practice during the pre-season, surprised everyone by working a scoreless 1st inning. Alex continued, batter after batter, getting outs and putting “goose-eggs” on the scoreboard as he faced 20 straight Giant batters without giving up a hit. In total, Vivas only gave up one hit in 6 innings of work.
However, the Royals offense only managed 5 runs in the 7 inning game on 11 hits. This shows that both teams played respectable defense and the pitching for both teams did a good job. The Giants pitchers off-set the Royals 11 hits by striking out 8 Royal batters.
For the first games of the season and with only very limited opportunities to practice, the level of baseball represented by the talent in the HDL was noteworthy. Baseball will only get better, as long as our players and their families stay healthy and follow precautions to avoid becoming affected by the dreaded virus that is being reported in the news every day and over the internet.
Schedule for next week:
Friday, July 3rd, 7:00 PM – Royals verses the Cardinals
Sunday, July 5th (10:00 AM) – Giants verses Yankees
BYE – Athletics