The Ecstasy and the Agony of Baseball

“I had to hit that pinch hit grand slam against the Astros last night! – With my season stats at Seattle, I was well on the way to being out the door and back to living in a van ~ down by the river!” ~ Dan Vogelbach (not Chris Farley)

The Ecstasy of Marisnick and the Agony 0f Vogelbach

That sums up how we got to feel it in Houston last night. It was Seattle’s turn to feel the happy ending version of the same script. For our rendition here, it was a tale of a few 8th inning numbered pitches.

TOP OF THE 8TH, Hector Rondon now pitching, Astros still holding on to the 1-0 lead they’ve precariously protected from the Bottom of the 4th inning ~ to this moment. ~ Here’s what happened in a nutshell of pitches:

SEATTLE BATTING …. Hector Rondon pitching his first inning in relief for Houston:

Pitch #2: Lefty Nelson Cruz laces a single to center field.

Kristopher Negron enters as a pinch runner at 1st for Cruz.

Pitch #4: RHB Ryon Kelly is retired on a diving shoestring catch in center by Jake Marisnick!

Pitch #6: LHB Kyle Seager dumps a dying quail single to left field as Negron moves to 2nd.

LHB Robinson Canoe enters as pinch hitter for Cameron Maybin.

Pitch #8: Robinson Can is retired on a second diving shoestring catch in center by Jeff Marisnick!

Pitch #12 : On a 1-2 pitch, Denard Span takes an arguably missed strike to call to go 2-2 in the count.

Pitch #14: Span walks; Seager to 2nd; Negron to 3rd; bases loaded!

LHB Dan Vogelbach enters as a pinch hitter for Guillermo Heredia.

Pitch #17: Vogelbach hits a grooved middle-of-the-plate Grand Slam HR into the Astros RCF bullpen.

The Mariners take a 4-1 that will hold up as the final, most disappointing-in-Houston final score! The fielding heroics of Jake Marisnick are wasted and lost as a legend with a happy ending! The chance for Houston to expand its lead over 2nd place Oakland is gone for the day! And now one of the club’s deadly late game relievers has to both put this game’s outcome on short memory while he tries his hardest to remember that waist-high over the middle of the plate is no place to deliver a fastball ~ especially when the other team has the bases-loaded and he’s trying to hold on to a one-run lead late in the game.

********************

Top Ten AL Batting Averages 

Through Games of Mon., 9/17/18: 

BATTING AVERAGE

1. Betts • BOS ~ .337

2. Martinez • BOS ~ .328

3. Trout • LAA ~ .3181

4. Altuve • HOU ~ .3179

********************

AL WEST SCORES, 

Thru Mon., 9/17/18:

Seattle 4 – Houston 1.

Tampa Bay 3 – Rangers 0.

 LA Angels (did not play).

Oakland (did not play).

********************

AL WEST STANDINGS

Morning of Tue., 9/18/18

TEAMS

WON

LOST

PCT.

GB

Houston

94

56

.627

 —-

Oakland

90

60

.600

   4.0

Seattle

83

67

.553

 11.0

LA Angels

74

76

.493

 20.0

Texas

64

86

.427

 30.0

********************

SCHEDULE BALANCE FOR

HOU, OAK & SEA:

DATE

HOU

OAK

SEA

9/18

SEA

LAA

@HOU

9/19

SEA

LAA

@HOU

9/20

LAA

9/21

LAA

MIN

@TEX

9/22

LAA

MIN

@TEX

9/23

LAA

MIN

@TEX

9/24

@TOR

@SEA

OAK

9/25

@TOR

@SEA

OAK

9/26

@TOR

@SEA

OAK

9/27

@BAL

TEX

9/28

@BAL

@LAA

TEX

9/29

@BAL

@LAA

TEX

9/30

@BAL

@LAA

TEX

 

********************

Bill McCurdy

Principal Writer, Editor, Publisher

The Pecan Park Eagle

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6 Responses to “The Ecstasy and the Agony of Baseball”

  1. Tom Hunter Says:

    If the screen box was accurate, it looked like Rondon actually hit the mark, but was being squeezed by the umpire’s postage stamp strike zone.

  2. Larry Dierker Says:

    The TV strike zone may not be perfect but it’s better than any umpire on the planet. It’s tough to call balls and strikes standing behind the catcher.

    I blame myself. I’ve been saying Presley, Rondon and Osuna are almost as good as Lidge, Dotel and Wagner. Should know when to keep my mouth shut.

    • Tom Hunter Says:

      I watched a discussion on MLB about moving to a computerized strike zone.

      Billy Ripken made the suggestion that since everyone knows which umpires are good at calling balls and strikes, there should be designated home plate umpires in each crew instead of rotating the duties.

      What do you think of this idea?

  3. Rick B. Says:

    Dan Vogelbach?! Wasn’t he the guy that used to sing “Leader of the Band”? Oh, wait, that was Dan Fogelberg. Okay, at least the Astros lost to a legitimate baseball player.

    • Bill McCurdy Says:

      Yes, the Astros lost to a “legitimate baseball player” …. unless the guy turns out to really be the reincarnate ghost of the late comedian Chris Farley in a renewed portrayal of “Matt Foley, the Motivational Speaker.” In that case, I can hear old Matt gloating now. ….

      “So, the Houston Astros thought they’d stop me …. MATT FOLEY …. the world’s greatest MO-TI-VA-TIONAL speaker …. by leaving a guy like Hector Ron-Don in the game to pitch against ME! ~ ME? ~ C’MON!

      “All I got to say is WHUP-TEE-PIGGY-FRIGGIN-DO!!!!

      “NOBODY stops the always great, but forever HUMBLE Matt Foley under these dire conditions of fortune and fate circumstance! ~ I had no choice but to BLAST the BUZZ-ING BEE-JABBERS out of a straight moving fast ball on its waist-high route down the middle of the plate to the catcher’s glove and to thusly rescue victory for Seattle. ~ GO MARINERS!”

      ~ Matt Foley

      • Rick B. Says:

        I’ll concede that Vogelbach does have the look of the kind of guy who has been “eating a lot of government cheese while living in a van down by the river.”

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