Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Omaha Adventure Day 4 - The Reckoning

2016 Slumpbusters...The Reckoning.  After three days of travel and three weeks worth of life experience - if G's constant questions of being robbed (first in Detroit, then in Council Bluffs) was any indicator, Day 4 of our Omaha Experience finally included some of C's baseball.  The Triple Crown Slumpbusters tournament was finally ready to go.

Two pool games and then the playoffs.  Wait, we traveled all the way to "Omaha" and we only play 2 pool games before the playoffs?  Well, at least this will give us more time at the Americinn.

Game 1 would be against this team from California - Phenom OC.  And C would get the opening start.  I was nervous the morning of.  I wouldn't admit it to C, but I was nervous.  I could only hold down 1 coffee from the local Starbucks and only one Chicken Salad Sandwich from the local Hy-Vee.  As we drive down to the field, I tried to impart some Fatherly wisdom.  Keep the ball on the outside corner.  Take your time.  Mix up your pitches against the middle of the lineup. 

"OK, Dad  I get it"  C moans.  Maybe he's nervous too...Nah, he's just tired of me talking to him.  No Frappuccino for you I guess.

As we get in for the early morning game, G and I drop him off with his team.  This is our first glimpse of some of the rest of the parents.  They were all impressed that we drove out here.  (And didn't kill on another is what went unsaid).

G and I drive around the Starbucks area and barely get back in time to watch the first pitch.  It would have been better if we didn't come back.  C's low strikes were not getting called strikes.  The first batter takes a 3-2 pitch the other way for a triple.  This does not give me the good vibes.  A couple of walks and a couple errors and a couple of hits later and the score is 5-0.  Uh oh.  C has his pissed off look on his face when he is ready to bear down, but the ump was still not going to call the low strike.  It didn't help my psyche that the California coach was being a prick - arguing balls and strikes, telling the ump that C's necklace ( a fighten necklace for crying aloud) and yelling at our players.

(Quick aside.  I usually don't blame the umpires, but if you don't call strikes on the lower half of the zone, I don't mind blaming you).

We get a couple of runs back in the inning, as the Umpire was just as tight with the zone with the other team too.  5-3 after 1.

Before the 20-8 Bombardment, or After...Lot of sun
The second inning really didn't go that much better as C gives up 2 more runs.  We're losing 7-3 going into the bottom of the Second.  After two outs are made and we score a couple of runs, C comes up for a second time with a runner at second.  He proceeds to drive in the tying run to make it 7-7.  Then C proceeds to steal second and third (Dad's wheels!) and then scores on a passed ball.  We're now winning 8-7. 

But the lead is short lived as we give up a ton of runs after C comes out of the game after 2 innings pitched.  He pitched well, just could not get any called strikes.  I'm usually not an apologist, but Christ was this a narrow Zone.  And our relievers did not do any better.  We make more errors, most of which could have been avoided.  We don't score any more runs and proceed to lose our first game 20-8.  Ugh.  C did get two hits though and made some dynamic plays.  0-1 in the two game pool.  Just like Women's soccer.

Game 2, while not as interesting, did lead to a win and a 1-1 record in pool play.  We played a team from Teas and proceeded to beat them 12-4.  I guess I should say that it was completely uninteresting as C (after talking some mild trash to one of the Texas kids) was then hit in his next at bat.  Apparently, this was true.  What a bunch of Wussies from the Lone Star State.  I guess things were more interesting!

We go into the playoff round starting tomorrow as the 5 seed.  Next up is the Naperville White Sox Black from Illinois.

Next up, Game 2 of the College World Series.

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