Day: July 21, 2024

Orioles at Sand Crabs

It was a muggy and warm day at EMLL on July 21st, when the Sand Crabs hosted the Orioles in the 45+ division of the MABL of Southern Wisconsin.  The pitching matchup was one with some history, with Steve “Konnichi” Waugh hurlin’ fer de birds, and birthday boy Randy Gaber who was celebrating his XXth trip around the sun. Waugh has pitched well against the Crabs this year, and was ready to have a repeat performance.  The Crabs, however, had other ideas.  They had already purchased a cake, and would be damned if they couldn’t light the candles for Gaber’s XXth celebration afterward.

The Crabs struck first in the first, when second baseman Troy Galston scored on a fielders choice off the bat of Jim Pliner, and then Gaber trotted home on an errant throw. 2-0 Crabs.

In the bottom of 3, the Sand Crabs got 4 more to take what would typically be a comfortable lead.  But not in old man baseball…anything can happen and it usually does.  In this inning, Gaber, Pliner, and Bernie Albright had back, to back, to back RBI singles after ‘lil slugger Chris McGill reached on an error and Galston took a free pass.

Bottom of four meant seven more for the Crabs, whilst Gaber continued to stymie the Birds.  The 4th was highlighted by Randy Olivares’ leadoff single and a double by Dewey Walz to get Olivares over to third.  Olivares flashed some speed not seen since the early 90’s as he scorched the path between second and third.  Galston walked again, and Gaber knocked in Olivares with a birthday single.  This was followed by a ballerina’s favorite.  Two 2 run singles, or tutu run singles for those of you who are cultured.  One by Albright and one by Tim McInernay, who coincidentally enjoy the ballet and have taken some classes.

That would be about it on this day, as shortly thereafter, with their players feeling the aches and pains of the day and a storm-a-coming, the Orioles threw in the towel.

Orioles were led by Jeff Randall with two hits, and John Kuehl, Jason Edge, and Jim Wichern each picked up one.

Gaber went 5 strong innings, not allowing a runner past second base, assisted by some stellar errorless defense by the Crabs behind him.  He walked none and struck out one.

The Crabs send well wishes to Ely Torres of the Orioles, who left with a sore right ankle after a close play at third base.  Get well soon, Ely!

Thirsts were quenched at Slice’s, and Gaber was a unanimous choice for SPOG, both offensive and defensive and not just because Wally is hoarding the second mug.  Well deserved, Gabes.  Well deserved.  Its hard to believe you’re XX years old.

Both squads are back in action at EMLL next week, with the Orioles hosting the Crawfords at noon, and the Crabs visiting the Rangers in the afternoon cap at 3. Tickets are still available, just go to www.www.www for all the details and package pricing.