Local minor league baseball in a great little field last night was the best baseball in years. The Charleston River Dogs [co-owned by Bill Murray, Director of Fun] were teh awesome! In the sparkling little stadium on the banks of the Ashley River and trailing 6-2 in the bottom of the ninth, the 'Dogs were struggling and half the crowd had already gone home. The pitcher barely held on in the top of the ninth and everyone breathed a sigh of relief when the comically named Savannah Sand Gnats were retired.Seriously? Naming a team after stinging little gnats is like naming your boy Sue. Tends to make them a bit scrappy.
After a disasterous middle inning the fans were glad to have the 'Dogs hanging in there at bat, and sometime during the 6th inning a rather large red and grey fox bolted into right field! The Gnats outfielder had to shoo him back to the swampy reeds and marshes just outside the stadium but for a few moments the crowd was smitten by the Real RiverDog!
The Gnats outfielder put on a pretty good show all around, winning admiration from the friendly crowd as he slammed into the first baseline wall after a foul ball. We were not too far away away to hear the crunching of body parts, but he was A-okay after all. Everyone gave a good effort and the crowd was very sportsmanlike to pass along accolades to the visitors when merited.
Oh yeah, bottom of the ninth, and the first home-run of the game goes sailing over left-centerfield fence and the crowd wakes up. Then, with two runners on base, a solid, sweet home-run in just about the same spot absolutely makes the crowd nuts! 6-6 and we're into extra innings!
10th inning was almost a three-up three-down for both sides. Tension mounts. The jumbo-tron operator puts on the Kid Vid before the bottom of the eleventh, and the crowd is perplexed at first and then cheers in agreement. This is OUR time! A flawless performance by the Gnats falls apart when their pitcher goes wild, the bunts are sacrificed and an instinctual foul-ball catch on a single out sent the runner home after the tag.
RiverDogs win! And the crowd goes wild!
I just love America.