Fish Sticks Hang On, Top Downtown Bobby Brown 8-7

16 May
Joey went 3 for 4 with a double, 2 home runs, and 3 RBI, as the Fish Sticks outscored Downtown 8-7

Joey went 3 for 4 with a double, 2 home runs, and 3 RBI, as the Fish Sticks outscored Downtown 8-7

In a back-and-forth game where both pitchers struggled to keep the ball in the park, four of the five Fish Sticks homered in an 8-7 win over Bobby Brown.

The Sticks sent Dinger to the mound, who was 1-1 and coming off the season’s best pitching performance against the Caucasians. He got off to a good start in the first, retiring Gaurav and Helal in order for a scoreless inning.

Gaurav came into the game a perfect 2-0, but struggled early and his worst inning of the season in the first. Blose led off the game by belting a pitch off the right-centerfield fence. After a series of fielding errors, he rounded the bases for a leadoff inside-the-park home run, the first in league history. Gaurav retired Dinger, the next batter, but Joey followed with a one-out double. Ivan came to the plate, fresh from missing week 2, and hit a two-run blast, his first of the season. The next batter, Vassallo, crushed a homer to left field, and the Fish Sticks were up 4-0 early. Gaurav held the damage at 4 runs, as he got Blose to groundout to right for the second out of the inning.

Ivan's two-run homer, his first of the year, put the Fish Sticks up 3-0 early

Ivan’s two-run homer, his first of the year, put the Fish Sticks up 3-0 early

Bobby Brown got their bats out in the top of the second and chipped into their 4 run deficit. Holly led off the inning by grounding out to center, but Brad followed with a one-out double. The next batter, Gaurav, singled, as Brad raced home from second to cut the score to 4-1. With a runner on first, Helal continued the one-out rally, hitting a two-run shot to deep right field, and the score was 4-3. Despite giving up 3 runs, Dinger preserved the lead, getting Holly to ground out to left for the second out of the inning.

Helal's two-run homer in the second, his first of two in the game, narrowed the Bobby Brown deficit to 4-3

Helal’s two-run homer in the second, his first of two in the game, narrowed the Bobby Brown deficit to 4-3

Dinger couldn’t help himself at the plate in the bottom of the second, as he grounded out to left to start the inning. With one out, Joey hit a deep home run to left-center, his first of the season, pushing the score to 5-3. Gaurav retired the next batter, Ivan, to end the inning.

Bobby Brown continued to hit Dinger hard in the top of the third. Brad led off the inning with a laser home run, making the score 5-4. Dinger fanned Gaurav for the first out of the inning, but Helal followed with his second homer of the game, which tied the game at 5-5. The next batter, Holly, made back-to-back jacks by hitting a deep fly over the right field fence, and Downtown had their first lead of the game at 6-5. Brad couldn’t extend the inning, flying out to the mound for the second out of the inning.

Holly's first homer of the year put Downtown ahead 6-5 in the top of the third inning

Holly’s first homer of the year put Downtown ahead 6-5 in the top of the third inning

The Fish Sticks quickly responded in the bottom of the third. After Vassallo grounded out to center for the first out of the inning, Blose hit a one-out double, putting the tying run in scoring position. Dinger followed with a double, driving in Blose and tying the game at 6-6. With Dinger on second, Joey stepped to the plate and hit a 2-run homer, his second in as many at-bats, and the Sticks had regained the lead at 8-6. Gaurav remained in the game, and retired Ivan to end the third.

Joey hit his second homer of the game in the third, a two-run shot that put the Fish Sticks up for good

Joey hit his second homer of the game in the third, a two-run shot that put the Fish Sticks up for good

Gaurav looked to provide his own run support in the top of the fourth, and led off the inning with a single. He moved to second when Kyle grounded out for the first out of the inning, and the tying run was at the plate with a runner on. But Dinger escaped, stranding Gaurav at second when he got Holly to fly out to Ivan in right field for the second out.

Dinger had his worst start of the season on the mound, but pitched well enough to earn the win

Dinger had his worst start of the season on the mound, but pitched well enough to earn the win

Vassallo led off the bottom of the fourth with a single, but the Fish Sticks wouldn’t add to their lead. Gaurav retired Blose and Dinger in order for a scoreless fourth.

Down two runs, Brad led off the top of the fifth with a single. Mark, inserted into the lineup, grounded out to left, pushing Brad into scoring position at second. The next batter, Gaurav, singled, and for the second time in the game Brad raced home from second. The hit cut the Fish Sticks lead to 8-7. The tying run was on first, but Dinger got Helal to ground out to left for the second out of the inning.

The Sticks lead had been cut to one and they looked to add insurance runs in the bottom of the fifth. Gaurav retired Joey for the first out of the inning, but Ivan followed with a one-out single. The Sticks failed to add to their lead, however, as Vassallo grounded out to left, stranding the runner on first and ending the inning.

With a one-run lead, the Sticks turned to their closer, Blose, to seal the deal. He had no trouble closing out the game, as he got both Holly and Brad to ground out to Joey in center for a perfect sixth, earning the first save for any pitcher in the 2012 season.

The win moved the Fish Sticks to 3-2 on the season, as Bobby Brown fell to 2-3.

W: Dinger (2-1)
L: Gaurav (2-1)

Box Score

Game Notes:
– Joey led the Fish Sticks offensively, going 3 for 4 with a double, 2 homers, 3 RBI, and 3 runs scored. He also recorded 2 putouts in the field.
– Helal led Bobby Brown, going 2 for 5 with 2 homers and 3 RBI. Brad also played well, going 3 for 5 with a single, a double, a homer, 3 runs scored and an RBI.
– Dinger picked up the win for the Sticks, giving up 7 runs on 9 hits in 5 innings, striking out 1.
– Blose is the only pitcher in league history to record a save. He now has 4 for his career.

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