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One Last Shot – Season 3, Post 5: Game 1 Results And A Surprise Draft Pick!

by Paul Semendinger

May 2, 2021

***

There can definitely be too much of a good thing. Yes, indeed.

But can there ever be too much baseball?

***

First, the game earlier today…

We played in Bayonne, New Jersey which isn’t too far from Hoboken where the first baseball game was played.

The field location was nice. It was right on the water.

The field itself was hard as a rock.

***

In short, I did ok.

Not great. Not terrible.

Ok.

Just ok.

***

I never “felt” it out there on the mound today. It was a struggle from the start.

I could blame it on the pitching mound which I didn’t like.

But I won’t.

It was me.

I started the game. I fell behind the first batter 3-0. That was concerning to me because if there is one thing I can do it’s throw strikes.

I battled back and he flied out.

I got the next two batters for a 1, 2, 3 first inning.

In the second inning, I gave up a leadoff double and then retired the next three guys.

Two solid innings.

In the third inning, it fell apart a bit. We had been leading 3-0… and I gave up three runs. I believe we made two or three errors in the field that inning. One was mine, on a pop up to the mound, a ball I catch, always, for whatever reason, I backed away thinking it was hit further than it was. It fell for a bloop infield hit.

It was that kind of day.

In the fourth, I have up three more runs. I hit two batters, one with the bases loaded.

Still, I battled back to limit the damage, but I knew that that was the end of my day.

When Coach said, “Go back out to start the fifth and we’ll see what happens…” I said, “No, my day is done. “

Sam came in, pitched the final five innings. He gave up just two runs.

Our batters kept battling. We’d eventually score nine.

We won 9-8.

It’s great to win.

We’re now 3-0.

***

I have always been honest about my performances. I had nothing. I walked none. I struck out none.

I battled.

I didn’t let the game get away from us.

But I wasn’t good.

In the end, we won.

It’s good to not be the losing pitcher.

I gave it all I had, but I didn’t have any zip of my “fastball” and the curve ball I learned stayed straight as an arrow.

In a way I was fortunate to survive four innings without giving up 100 runs.

I never gave in though, I tried to find a way… and I guess I did.

I guess I did just enough to not let the game get away from us.

***

And so, as these things go, sometimes with no rhyme or reason, while I was having pitching lessons at the baseball school, and looking very good, I was approached by a coach of a weekday baseball team who was also working at the baseball school., though not with me.

It seems that they need a pitcher.

He wanted me on his team.

It turns out this team won the championship last year.

I don’t know if they need a mop-up man, a middle reliever, a closer, or a starter.

But they drafted me.

I don’t know if I can handle playing two games a week, especially if I have to pitch a lot in both.

It’s probably far too much of a good thing.

But if there ever was a year to try something like this – this is the year.

Usually my springtime is full of evening events, evening meetings, evening programs, and such. I’m not home much in the ending months of a school year. This year we won’t have many of those activities. As such, I’m “free.”

I figured it was worth seeing what this other team is all about. I’m wondering if I can learn more about the art of pitching.

I have the very real feeling that this is my last best shot.

I want to give it all I have.

So I will.

(And If all I have is what I had today… I probably won’t have to worry too much about pitching too often. The only thing I’ll have to worry about is splinters!)

***

Previous Season 3 Posts:

One Last Shot – Season 3, Post 1: This Time It’s For Real

One Last Shot – Season 3, Post 2: My Spring Training

One Last Shot – Season 3, Post 3: Back To Earth

One Last Shot – Season 3, Post 4: Finally, I Hope…

***

Previous Season Posts:

Season One – The Complete First Season

Season Two – The Complete Second Season

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