GAME EIGHTEEN: INDIANS vs. MARLINS
Final Score Game 18: Indians 15, Marlins 14
Monday, June 10, 2006, 4:00 p.m., Minor Field
The Alameda AAA Indians won their rematch with the Marlins in a very close contest, splitting the season series and ending their season on a high note.
Nick Stevens took the mound for the Indians against lead-off batter Sam Kuttner of the Marlins to open the game. Kuttner grounded short in the infield and Stevens made the throw to Wyatt Arens at first base for one away. Next, Erik Morris struck out swinging and Grant Kopps hit a fly ball to second that was caught by Isaac Maximov to hold the Marlins scoreless in the first.
The Indians jumped out to a big lead in the bottom of the first on the strength of aggressive base running and timely hitting. Stevens led off against the Marlins' pitcher Cameron Beene, singling on a hard grounder to left field. A mishandled pitch to Jackson Tracy opened the way for Stevens to steal second, and then to get the better of the Marlins in a rundown and steal third. Another pitch in the dirt allowed Stevens to steal home for the Indians first run and Tracy took a base on balls. Tracy stole second on a mishandled pitch to Micah Rothenbuhler and advanced to third on Rothenbuhler's fly ball double to deep center. Tracy stole home on a wild pitch to Isaac Maximov and Rothenbuhler advanced to third. Maximov walked and then stole second before Trevor Greenley hit a fly ball single to shallow center scoring Rothenbuhler and advancing Maximov to third. The runners advanced on a wild pitch to Derek Snediker, Greenley to third and Maximov stealing home. Snediker passed on a full count pitch and took a base on balls giving the Indians runners on first and third. A mishandled pitch to Arens made way for Snediker to steal second and then score along with Greenley on Arens' bouncing ground ball single to right field. Arens stole second on a mishandled pitch to Billy Hommert before Hommert walked to put runners on first and second. The runners advanced to second and third and Snediker stole home before Casey Thiering struck out swinging on a full count pitch for one away. Evan Park singled on a fly to left and then stole second before Joe Hausner struck out. Hommert stole home on a pitch in the dirt to Liam Bergstrom and Park advanced to third. Bergstrom took a base on balls, but was forced out and Park stranded when Stevens grounded to second. The score at the end of the first inning was Marlins zero, Indians nine.
The Marlins got on the scoreboard and made up some ground in the second inning. Stevens continued on the mound for the Indians. Gabe Ross grounded between first and second and beat the throw from Rothenbuhler to Thiering backing him up at first. Damen Shaw dropped a fly in the gap between the infield and the outfielders for a single and then the runners advanced on a wild pitch to Cameron Beene. Beene's fly ball single to right scored Ross and Shaw, and then he stole second with Ian Long at the plate. A ground ball to first was good for a single when Rothenbuhler was pulled off the bag and the Marlins had runners on first and third. Long stole second with Gabriel Verm batting and a mishandled pitch allowed Beene to steal home and Long to advance to third. Verm struck out for one away and Long attempted to steal home and was tagged out by Tracy for two. Alexander Wilson-Leech took Stevens to a full count and a base on balls. A pair of stolen bases with Nolan Takeshita at bat moved Wilson-Leech to third and then Takeshita walked on a full count pitch, giving the Marlins runners on first and third. Takeshita stole second with Miguel Nunez at the plate, and then Wilson-Leech stole home and Takeshita advanced to third before Nunez walked. Nunez stole second but Emma Sullivan struck out to end the inning with Takeshita and Nunez stranded. Play moved to the bottom of the second with the Indians leading the Marlins by a score of nine to four.
The Indians extended their lead in the bottom of the second. Tracy took Beene, again pitching for the Marlins, to a full count before striking out. Rothenbuhler singled on a line drive to center, and then stole second with Maximov at the plate, and proceeded to third on a missed pick-off throw. Maximov grounded to short for a single, scoring Rothenbuhler, and then advanced to second when Greenley was hit by a pitch and walked. Maximov and Greenley advanced to second and third and Snediker singled on a low fly to center, scoring Maximov and advancing Greenley to third. Snediker stole second and Arens singled on a grounder to short and scored Greenley. Arens and Snediker advanced on a wild pitch to Hommert and then Snediker stole home and Arens third before Hommert was called out on strikes for two away. Thiering flied to left but the ball was caught, stranding Arens and closing the second with the Indians leading thirteen to four.
The Marlins narrowed the scoring gap in the third inning. Billy Hommert took the mound for the Indians with the Marlins at the top their order. Kuttner walked, and Morris hit a line drive into center for a single, advancing Kuttner to second. Kopps flied to center, but the runners were held when Stevens made the catch for one away. Ross stretched a single to a double on a drive to center, scoring Kuttner and advancing Morris to third. Shaw flied to center, scoring Morris and Ross and gaining second. A pitch in the dirt to Beene allowed Shaw to steal third and Beene took a base on balls to give the Marlins runners on first and third. Beene stole second, and then a bouncing grounder by Long brought Beene and Shaw home and Long advanced to second on the throw to the plate. Verm hit a home run, scoring himself and Long. Wilson-Leech walked and then was forced out at second when Takeshita hit a grounder to Maximov at second and threw the ball to Snediker on the bag for two away. Takeshita was stranded when Nunez was called out on strikes.
Miguel Nunez took over pitching for the Marlins in the bottom of the third. Park led off grounding back to Nunez and was thrown out at first. Hausner grounded to third and was also thrown out at first and Bergstrom struck out. The Indians were held scoreless in the third and took the field for the fourth leading the game 13-11.
Micah Rothenbuhler came in to pitch for the Indians and Emma Sullivan led off for the Marlins in the top of the fourth. Sullivan passed on a full count pitch and took her base on balls and advanced to second when Kuttner grounded to first and Park fielded the ball and tagged the bag for one away. Sullivan stole third before Morris struck out swinging, and then scored when Kopps lined towards third and beat the throw to first. Ross flied to shallow right center for a double and the Marlins had runners on second and third. A pitch in the dirt to Shaw made room for the runners to advance as Kopps scored and Ross moved to third. Shaw grounded back to Rothenbuhler and was thrown out at first and play moved to the bottom of the fourth with the score tied at thirteen all.
Nunez returned to the mound for the Marlins facing the top of the Indians batting order. Stevens took a base on balls and the stole second with Tracy at the plate. Stevens stole third and then Tracy walked, giving the Indians runners on first and third. Rothenbuhler grounded to second, scoring Stevens, but was thrown out at first and the Marlins made it a double play with a force out of Tracy at second. Maximov flied foul and the catch was made to retire the Indians with one run scored and a one run lead at 14-13.
Beene led off for the Marlins against Rothenbuhler pitching for the Indians, singling on a grounder to right field and putting the tying run on base. Beene stole second with Long at bat, and then stole third before scoring on Long's ground ball to Park at first. Park made the play for one away and took the throw from Rothenbuhler when Verm grounded back to the mound for the second out. Wilson-Leech struck out swinging and the game was again tied at 14-14.
The Marlins held the Indians scoreless in the bottom of the fifth. Gabriel Verm came in to pitch and Greenley grounded to second and was thrown out at first. Snediker grounded to second and was thrown out at first, Arens did the same and the Indians were retired in order and quickly returned to the field.
The Indians defense held firm in the top of the sixth. Rothenbuhler returned to the mound and struck out Takeshita for one away. Nunez singled on a slow grounder down the third base line and then stole second before Sullivan walked. Kuttner hit a bouncing grounder to Rothenbuhler who made the throw to third to force out Nunez, the possible winning run. Morris and Rothenbuhler dueled to a full count, and then the Marlins were retired scoreless when Morris was called out on strikes, the score still tied.
The Indians came up to bat in the bottom of the sixth needing only to score to win the game. Verm continued pitching for the Marlins and Hommert led off with a full count line drive single to center putting the potential winning run on base. Thiering popped up to the pitcher and Verm made the catch for one away. Park doubled on a fly ball to center, advancing Hommert to scoring position on third. Hausner walked, loading the bases with one out, and Bergstrom came up to bat. On an errant pitch that got by the catcher, Billy Hommert stole home, just avoiding the tag at the plate and the Indians pulled out a victory, 15-14 over the Marlins.
This was a well played game by both teams and was very exciting to watch. Credit goes to both teams for taking it to the wire and putting in great efforts.
Game recap written by J. Michael Bergstrom. All rights reserved.