Babies Drop Two at George Ranch

Blind Toms and Vintage Teams

Blind Toms and Vintage Teams Play Ball in the Noon Day Sun!

The Houston Babies (0-2) dropped both games they played today at George Ranch, losing 9-5 and 5-2 to the Katy Combine in a DH dose of shellac. By the time a fresh version of the Boerne White Sox finally arrived from their abode near San Antonio, the Babies were done for the day, but Katy managed to patch together enough of a lineup to take them on in a single game. Boerne (1-0) blasted the worn out Katy (2-1) nine, 8-0, to become the only club on the day with a perfect record.

The Publisher, Editor, Writer, and Chief Bottle Washer of the  Pecan Park Eagle was a little under the weather and unable to attend today’s festivities, but our crack field reporter and beat writer, Mike McCroskey, who also bore the double-duty job of filling in for our cruising Babies mentor, Bob Dorrill, as the Babies Manager of the Day took us on as well. Do you think the Yankees ever could have gotten Joe Torre to both manage their club and write up the game stories too?

Thanks for all you do, Mr. McCroskey; you are a one in a million friend and fan of the grand old game.

Ladies and Gentlemen, settle back and enjoy our star reporter’s festival and game day report from George Ranch on Saturday, October 26, 2013.  By the way, Mr. McCroskey also took the pictures used here. All I did was the title and Photoshop work on the photos and the mechanical work of posting this wonderful (but also sad because we lost, but that’s baseball for you) report:

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HOUSTON BABIES DROP DH WITH KATY COMBINE; BOERNE WHITE SOX TAKE SINGLE GAME WITH KATY.

BY Mike McCroskey, Special Reporter for The Pecan Park Eagle

On a cool, crisp autumn day with a bright blue sunshine-filled sky overhead clustered with billowy white clouds, weather reminiscent of when the World Series games were played during the day, Texian days at the George Ranch welcomed Vintage baseball with a day made for baseball.  The Katy Combine and Houston Babies squared off at 10:00 A.M. to the delight of record attendance crowds.  The Babies, managed by first time manager Mike McCroskey, subbing for the vacationing Bob Dorill (somewhere upon a sea in the North Atlantic) were a little short-handed as many of the regulars failed to show.  However, many eager cranks got their first chance to experience the thrill of vintage baseball as a result.  The first call for volunteers found no shortage of willing participants.  The game day began, as game days should:  Both teams in the field, a short prayer remembering missing Departed Houston Baby, Larry Joe Miggins; and thanking our veterans. Then both teams came together in a group on the field, singing the Star Spangled Banner prior to the first pitch.

Bill Hale (far left) is a veteran Babies player in our George Ranch Field of Dreams.

Bill Hale (far left) is a veteran Babies player in our George Ranch Field of Dreams.

Brian Ketchum of Fort Worth, Texas started in center field and led off the Babies bottom of the first with a hit., later coming around to score the game’s first run on a solid double by Shortstop Mark Hudec.  He was joined by newcomer Tim Murphy, a guest of pitcher Bill Hale.  Tim started the game in left field and singled in his first at bat in the second inning, coming around to score on a 2 rbi single by Babies septuagenarian second baseman, Phil Holland.

The Katy Combine, however, were the masters of the big inning, scoring 7 runs in the second inning, which proved to be decisive in what ended in a 9-5 Katy victory.  Ira Liebman of the Sugar Land Skeeters, also, debuted in this game at first base, making several spectacular hustle plays after overcoming some early inning jitters.  We, also, had a couple of Katy players filling in for the Babies in the outfield, scoring one of the Babies’ runs.  And speaking of good fielding, the Babies turned not one , but two 6-4-3 double plays in what turned into a late inning defensive battle.

Vintage Ball is Our Reminder that Baseball is Forever.

Vintage Ball is Our Reminder that Baseball is Forever.

Tom Hull led the Katy Combine, scoring a run in all 3 of his at bats in the 5 inning game.  His 10-year old daughter, Gracie, pinch ran for McCroskey in a failed pinch hit appearance.  Speedy Meghan McCroskey was absent this day due to excessive homecoming week commitments.

Game 2, found the Babies short a couple of more players.  Brent Hopkins of Pearland started at shortstop, and his 10-year old son Blake started in the outfield.  Young Blake got on base twice and scored one of the Babies 2 runs.  Tim Mahoney played his second game in the outfield, and Alex Jimenez, literally walked on to the field and reached base in each of his 2 at bats in this quickly played 5 inning game.  Gracie Hull started in left field and played the entire game.

The Combine were again the masters of the big inning, scoring 5 runs in the bottom of the first which held up for a 5-2 victory.  Tom Flores led the Combine with a pair of hits in his only 2 at bats, scoring the first run in the big 5 run first.  The first of the Boerne White Sox players began showing up in the middle of this game.

The horizons of baseball are always a possible reach in our sandlot brains. All it takes to get there is the long ball of never giving up on your dreams.

The horizons of baseball are always a possible reach in our sandlot brains. All it takes to get there is the long ball of never giving up on your dreams.

By this time, players had worked up quite an appetite, and the George Ranch treated all to a delicious home-made chili and Frito dish that was eagerly consumed by most.  Seconds were had by many and more of the Babies left.  However, the rest of the Boerne White Sox arrived and game 3 of the set was soon underway.  It was agreed that this would be a 7 inning affair as it was the last game of the day.  Babies first baseman, Ira Liebman, started at 3rd for the Combine as they were one man short at game time.

We don't care if we never get back!

We don’t care if we never get back!

The White Sox had come a long way to play and were on their game this afternoon.  The chili laden Combine could not get it going against the Boerne nine, who repeatedly made sparkling fielding plays in what resulted in an 8-0 shutout win for the Sox.  Several players had pulled muscles, and little Gracie Hull made about 8 pinch running appearances in this game, never once reaching first.  She did, however, score a run after going in to pinch run for a Boerne player at third base.
The ultimate, “rub salt in your wound” play came on the game’s final at bat.  Combine third baseman Dave Flores hit a sharp grounder back to the Boerne pitcher known as Sparty.  Sparty had pulled a hamstring muscle earlier and Gracie had run for him in his last 3 at bats.  Anyway, this time, Sparty fielded the ball, and then hopped, one-legged, to first base for an unassisted putout on Dave, as the cranks and teams, oohed, awwed, and laughed!

Quite an “in-your-face” ending; and quite a day for vintage baseball.

Vintage Base Ball: It's the place where art and science, faith and fact, all come together. It is also the childhood fire in your heart that never left you, even when your childhood did.

Vintage Base Ball: It’s the place where art and science, faith and fact, all come together. It is also the childhood fire in your heart that never left you, even when your childhood did.

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“Save the Astrodome. ~ Give new life to the Eighth Wonder of the World. ~ Vote Yes on Harris County Proposition 2.”

“Save the Astrodome. ~ Give new life to the Eighth Wonder of the World. ~ Vote Yes on Harris County Proposition 2.”

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One Response to “Babies Drop Two at George Ranch”

  1. Greg Lucas Says:

    Judging from how many absentees I think the Babies should count that as a couple of exhibitions and not regular games. This will save Mike from an inglorious record as skipper of the team. No one wants to be saddled for life with a losing record!

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