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Game 3: Ouch!
HardBallers live up to their name as a scary moment fails to derail team
May 05, 2007

Score Box
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H BB
The HardBallers
6 2 7 0 2 6 0   23 29 1
4 0 1 1 0 5 2   13 X 2

Team rally together before the game by forming a hand circle.  (Wolan)
Play Ball

Game 3 against BILFS was put on “postponement” watch through-out the week as a rainy pattern swept through the area. But by game day, all Mother Nature could muster together was a chilly gray afternoon, with on and off drizzle and temperatures in the 40’s. Regardless, the two teams were ready to roll, even though this would be BILFS first game of the season.

The HardBallers went to work immediately by leading off the game with 6 consecutive hits, driving in 4 runs. A-WOL capped the charge with a 2-RBI single as the HardBallers took a quick 6-0 lead.

BILFS would respond with 4 runs in the bottom half of the inning to make it 6-4. But it could have been far worse.

Scary Incident

In the inning, a BILFS batter slapped a ball right back to the HardBallers’ pitcher, A-WOL. The ball struck him in the upper thigh, causing Andy to hit the dirt in agony. How did it feel? “The first thing that came to my mind was overwhelming joy to know that it did not hit me where I though it did,” commented HBs pitcher A-WOL. ‘A fraction of a second later, the pain kicked-in and boy did it hurt.” As for the location of where the ball struck, “had the ball struck me a few inches south and inside, I would have been in trouble.”

After ensuring there were no major injuries, A-WOL got-up and received a round of applause from both teams. Ironically, the pitcher managed to walk-off the pain and remained in the game. And despite the injury, A-WOL managed to strike-out a batter in the inning.

Continuing Action

In the second, the HardBallers got back two runs to make it 8-4. Jason belted a two out 2-RBI double to drive in Austin and Kenny.

In the bottom half of the second, the HardBallers’ defense truly began to click for the first time this season. BILFS batters went down in order thanks to some solid fielding work by the HBs. Pierre made a terrific catch in center field to end the inning; while trying to catch a fly ball in center field, Jason was unable to hold on as the ball bounced out of is glove and up and over his head. Pierre, who was playing back-up, managed to get a glove on the ball. Though he juggled it a few times, he was able to gain control and hang on for the out.

And despite the scare in the previous inning, the team’s pitching was solid. A-WOL was in control on the mound, pitching first-pitch strikes and unleashing a breaking ball that left many batters guessing. “I didn’t know I could do that so well,” commented A-WOL. “Whatever I’m doing differently today, it’s working extremely well.” A-WOL would record a K in second inning as well.

Jason and John both smile for the camera after each hitting a HR.  (Wolan)

This defensive success would continue for the next few innings as the team limited BILFS to two runs over 4 innings of play. BILFS would only send four batters to the plate in the third inning and A-WOL would record a 3 pitching swinging strike-out to end the fifth.

The HBs’ offense went into high gear in the third, sending 10 batters to the plate. Jason would cap the inning with a 2-RBI inside the park (ITP) HR as the team scored 7 runs off of 6 hits in the inning. After getting blanked in the fourth, John would join the HR club in the fifth with a solo ITP HR as part of a short 2-run rally in the fifth.

But the offense was not done. In the sixth, the team once again set 10 batters to the plate as the team scored 6 runs off of 8 hits. John hit his second ITP HR of the day batting in 2 runs. Not to be outdone fully, Jonathan slapped an RBI triple in the inning.

Do or Die

Mid-way through the sixth, the HardBallers were up 23-6. To avoid the mercy rule, BILFS would have to score at least 5 runs to keep the game alive. And that they did. A-WOL, who pitched 5 innings of great ball, fell out of rhythm. BILFS’ offense, silent since the first inning, took advantage of the situation and came to life scoring 5 runs. Their charge was highlighted by an ITP HR. With the score 23-11, and the mercy rule avoided, the game would go to the final inning of play.

Jason lead the seventh inning with a single and would advance to third on a single by Brian. Pierre would step-up and hit a ground ball to third. With Jason running to home, BILFS took a shot and tried to get Jason out at home. The third basemen toss the ball to the catcher, who then blocked any attempts by Jason to touch the plate, getting Jason out at home. “That was a pretty gutsy play by the catcher,” commented A-WOL. “I commend him for stepping-up and blocking the plate, despite the size mismatch of the two players.” The HBs were scoreless that inning.

In the bottom half of seventh, BILFS did what they could to scratch together runs, but the HBs defense closed the game and limited BILFS to a pair of runs to win the game 23-13.

In a game that could have gone either way, the HardBallers’ pitching and defense proved dominate as the team picks-up their first win of the season over BILFS.


  • Austin: 5 for 5 (3B) with 2 RBIs and 5 runs scored. Batting .900 after 3 games.
  • John: 3 for 3 with 2 ITP HRs, 3 RBIs and 3 runs scored. Batting 1.000 after 3 games.
  • Brian: 4 for 5 (2B, 3B), with 3 RBIs and 2 runs scored.
  • Jonathan: 4 for 5 (2B, 3B), with 3 RBIs and 2 runs scored.
  • Kenny: 4 for 5 (2B, with 2 RBIs and 3 runs scored.
  • Brian: 4 for 5 (2B, 3B), with 3 RBIs and 2 runs scored.
  • Jason: 3 for 5 with an ITP HR, 3 RBIs, and 2 runs scored.
  • A-WOL: 3K's over 7 innings. First career win with HardBallers.

  • Web gem: Pierre snags a loose ball after it deflects out of Jason's glove in center field. (2nd).

  • Game Photos & Audio Clips | HBs' Player Stats from the Game | Scorebook | Corbett's Post Game Analysis

    Andy Wolan is a reporter and photographer for BWCS. This story was not subject to the approval of the league or its clubs.