Postgame Thoughts (July 10, 2011)

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Quad Cities 6, Wisconsin 5 (11 innings)
Boxscore | Game Story

  • Apologies for taking so long to get this post up.  It’s taken me awhile to collect my thoughts.
  • Also, I went back and counted up all of the “walkoffs” (for and against) since 2004.
  • By the way it’s: 39 -For; 49 – Against
  • Since 2008 it’s: 13 – For; 28 – Against
  • I have also quantified my hate for Kane County.  The Cougars have walked the Rattlers off NINE times since 2004. The most of any team in the MWL.
  • Today was only the third time the Bandits have walked off the Rattlers.
  • Neither team came on the field until about 1:30 today. Both teams were back in their clubhouses watching the USA-Brazil Women’s World Cup game.
  • To the game: Jimmy Nelson 5IP, 7H, 3R, 6BB, 5K
  • In five innings, Nelson allowed 13 base runners. I have no idea how he only let in three runs.  Magic?
  • Well actually, Jason Rogers made one of the most amazing catches I have ever seen from anyone…much less anyone the size of Jason Rogers.  Also, Stang threw out a runner at the plate in the fifth. Four of the runners reached after there were two outs in an inning, and, um, there has to be another reason that doesn’t involve pulling a rabbit out of a hat.
  • But – unofficially – Nelson threw 92 pitches (53 strikes) in five innings.  He did not retire the side in order once today.
  • Greg Hopkins crushed a three-run homer to left in the second inning and the Rattlers took a 3-1 lead.
  • Then, it was the Badger basketball drought.  The next 18 batters were retired – 17 by Quad Cities starter Boone Whiting.
  • Included in that streak was a play that the umpires got right, but the way that they got it right was what got Matt Erickson frustrated.
  • BUT, before that play happened in the top of the sixth, there was a play that might have lit the fuse in the bottom of the fourth.
  • Runner at second one out for the River Bandits.  Colin Walsh sends a high chopper near second base. Mike Brownstein had to wait for it to come down, but his throw to first appeared to get Walsh by half a step.
  • HOWEVER, just before the ball got to first, Jonathan Rodriguez signaled safe. Rodriguez a player with the day off – to that point – was coaching first and decided to help out a bit. The base umpire called Walsh safe.  Matt Erickson came out to argue the call.
  • Instead of two out with nobody on base, runner at first one out and the Bandits eventually score twice to tie the game 3-3.
  • Fast forward to the top of the sixth. Nick Shaw sends a high pop up to shallow right-center.  Michael Swinson has a long run from center and Kolten Wong has a long run from second.  Swinson comes in an gets a glove on the ball, but it deflects away from him…right to Wong’s bare hand as Wong was sliding away to avoid contact…for a hit
  • Yes. It was originally called a hit by the base umpire.  Out comes Johnny Rodriguez, the Bandits manager.  He gets the base umpire to check with the plate umpire about the call.  After a brief discussion, the plate umpire rules Shaw out.
  • Erickson made a beeline from the third base box to the base umpire and he looked like he wasn’t going to leave until he got kicked out.  That’s what happened.
  • Again, the umpires made the right call. But, if the call is made correctly the first time there is no problem.
  • MIKE BROWNSTEIN!
  • Very nice eighth inning for Brownstein in his first game back off the DL.
  • He’s up with Paciorek at third and one out (After Paciorek TRIPLED, by the way).  Brownstein chopped a single over the drawn in infield for the run that put the Rattlers up 4-3.
  • Then, with smart base running and a lot of hustle, Brownstein took advantage of an indifferent throw to the cutoff man to score a run.
  • Brownstein was running on a hit-and-run single by Shaw.  The ball went to Oscar Tavares, who likes to show off his arm. Tavares had thoughts of throwing out Brownstein at third.  BUT, he forgot the ball as he overran it.  Brownstein made it to third and watched what was going to happen next.
  • Tavares showed a little too much disappointment at not being able to get Brownstein at third, so he lobbed the throw to the cutoff man about 30 feet away. Brownstein took off when the throw left Tavares’ hand.  Brownstein just beat the throw home for a 5-3 lead.
  • Alas, the lead did not last.
  • Brian Garman walked a batter with one out.  Then, Wong drove a ball just past Shaw at short on a hit-and-run.  The ball trickled into left-center and Wong hustled it into a double.
  • On comes Holle for the save opportunity.  Strikeout!
  • Then, Jonathan Rodriguez…remember him…comes on to pinch hit for Tavares.
  • The count was 3-1 and right before Holle made the pitch I said, “Be careful here.”
  • I should have said it louder.
  • Rodriguez hit the ball on a line off the wall in left so hard he only got a single out of it.
  • Only the second blown save of the season for Holle.
  • The Rattlers best chance in extra innings was in the 10th. Paciorek drew a one out walk and Franklin Romero went in to pinch run.
  • Romero has stolen two bases as a pinch runner this season. Alas, no third as he was caught 2-6.
  • It’s a good sign when Eric Marzec gets the first batter he faces in an inning. He gave up a single to the first batter he faced.
  • The 11th inning just built from there.  You could see it heading at the Rattlers like one of those big barges on the Mississippi River beyond the outfield fence.
  • Stolen base, walk, 3-4-1 grounder (well, maybe you couldn’t see that one coming) that moves the runners along, intentional walk to load the bases.
  • Fly ball to center was just deep enough to get the winning run home.
  • The benches were emptied in this game.
  • Quad Cities used 11 players & 3 pitchers.
  • The Rattlers used 12 players & 4 pitchers.
  • Colin Walsh played three positions in the game for Quad Cities: 3B, LF, & RF
  • Get ‘em tomorrow.

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