True Happiness – Postgame post for August 10, 2013

True happiness comes from the joy of deeds well done, the zest of creating things new. – Antoine de Saint-Exupery


Timber Rattlers 7
River Bandits 0
Boxscore | Game Story

All you really need to know about Saturday’s game is this: Hitting coach Dusty Rhodes was in a great mood! He stated as such on the bus just moments before the SCOOTER GENNETT HOME RUN. Whether one had anything to do with the other, I leave it up to you.

Joe Bircher, the starting pitcher for the Quad Cities River Bandits, has given up five Midwest League home runs this season.  He has given up four to the Timber Rattlers and two to Victor Roache.

Speaking of Roache…. KRACKKKADOOOM!, indeed.  His last few home runs have been these towering drives to left field.  His home runs tonight were line drives.  The first was hit to right-centerfield and disappeared over the wall in a hurry.  The second was this rising line drive to left that cleared the grass seating at the base of the scoreboard.  This homer also was out in the blink of an eye. 

Roache in August: 10 games, 2B, 3B, 5HR, 9 RBI. OPS of 1.039.

He has 20 home runs this season.  The Timber Rattlers franchise record is 22 (Khris Davis, 2010).

Tyler Wagner was upset that he didn’t grab the grounder up the middle off the bat of Danrys Vasquez.  It would have been a tough play, but Wagner has done a great job fielding his position this season.  Most notable tonight was getting over to cover first when Parker Berberet knocked down a hard one-hopper off the bat of Carlos Correa. 

Wagner was at over 80 pitches with 44 strikes, but his GO:FO was 7:1 with five strikeouts and two walks. 

Plus, he showed some moves getting out of the way of a Max Walla line drive while coaching first base in the top of the ninth.  Yep. The starting pitcher was coaching first base in the ninth. It caught me by surprise, too.

Mike Garza with three hits, including a homer, and three RBI.  Each of his hits came on the first pitch he saw in the at bat.  The first two were bloopers down each line.  The third was the home run to left-center.

The second hit by Garza scored Michael Reed from second base.  The play at the plate was close, but it looked like Reed got a hand in there with a headfirst slide.  We can debate the propriety of a head first dive into a plate being guarded by a catcher wearing shin guards at a later date, but Reed being called safe set off the River Bandits manager.  He appeared to argue that Reed never got to the plate.  He did not win the argument.

Parker Berberet tripled into the left field corner in the fourth inning.  It was his second triple of the season.  It was the 48th triple of the season for the Timber Rattlers.  The 1998 Timber Rattlers had 49 triples.  The 2010 Timber Rattlers had 58 triples.  Keep your eyes on this over the last few weeks of the season.

Harvey Martin got into the game with a 6-0 lead and just pitched.  He went to a three-ball count on only one player.  The only two base runners he allowed were hit batsman on two-strike pitches.  The only thing that was even close to a hit off Martin was denied by an Orlando Arcia web gem.

Roberto Pena hit this little looping line drive over the mound.  Arcia raced over fielded the ball with a bare-hand on one hop and whipped a strike to first base.  I just happened to look into the Rattlers dugout after the play and saw a couple of guys step away from the rail in disbelief.  It’s so much fun when something like that happens.

Garrett Cooper was hit by a pitch in the seventh inning.  It looked like it could have been his right hand.  Max Walla pinch-hit for Cooper in the ninth.  There was no report after the game.

Keep it going tomorrow.  Special 5pm start time.  Can’t wait to see what happens in that game.

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