Extra Innings - UMBC Recap
March 7, 2011
Senior Rob Froio logs his first entry to “Extra Innings”, recapping the Leopards’ doubleheader sweep at UMBC.
Our fearless blog leader AJ “Jimmy” Miller is taking this week off because he is soft, so I will pick up the slack for him. There were quite a few exciting events that happened this week so let’s get right to it.
We had our first mid-week game of the season last Wednesday against La Salle. Mid-week games are always a challenge because the players have to make a quick transition from “school mode” to “baseball mode”. We came out a little sluggish in the first few innings and had some trouble adjusting to the all-turf field. We were down by a few runs early, but by the middle innings we had turned it around and battled our way back into the game. Mike Massa and Ethan Perro kept La Salle’s bats quiet, while Scott Kelleher sparked our offense at the plate. Unfortunately, we couldn’t hold them off in the end.
The bus trip to UMBC was quick (only 1 movie) compared to the haul down to Davidson. However, there was still time for some healthy educational conversation in the back of the bus. Alex Bechta, Kevin McCarville, Corey Shea, Matt Fenster, Zach Fritz and I had an interesting conversation about The Prisoner’s Dilemma and its applications to everyday situations. Other popular topics included sunk costs, relationships, the history of ESPN and Animal Genetics. I believe that conversation in this environment is where the world’s sharpest minds show their true greatness.
The most important “non-baseball” parts of a weekend trip are ranked in order of importance as follows: comfortable bus, comfortable bed and good breakfast. This week’s bus was pretty comfortable and had nice flat screen TVs, though Shea didn’t think it was very comfortable. But in my opinion, he can’t complain about anything until he helps out with this blog. The beds were really comfortable, but Bechta wouldn’t know because he lost a coin flip with me and had to sleep on the pull-out couch. He called heads. The breakfast spread was excellent with options like cereal, yogurt, waffles, eggs and sausage. For drinks there was milk, coffee and an assortment of juices. A good hotel breakfast is hard to come by, so it is clutch when we find one.
Now back to the baseball. Our team was a well-oiled machine on Saturday. Our pitchers threw extremely well, highlighted by the dominant performance of John Gentile in the second game. Freshman Ben Meer and Connor “Warlock” Ortolf threw well in relief during the first game. Our hitters would not be out done, though. Miller hit a moon-shot homerun that landed in the next zip code. Bob Fargnoli and Scott Kelleher had great days at the plate as well. The top story of the day had to be Andrew Ruck’s first career college hit, which he then followed with four more hits — three doubles and a triple — and about a bazillion RBI. Actually it was seven RBI, but I was just estimating. In all, the pitchers kept UMBC in check and the hitters put on a laser show. I assure you there will be much more of this to come.
For all of our hard work this weekend Coach Kinney rewarded us with rolling up the tarp on our field yesterday… on our day off… in the rain. Like champions, we took it in stride, and no one complained at all. That was sarcasm.
This Wednesday, we have a game against Rider in Flemington, N.J. Then it’s off to California to catch some waves and soak in the sun rays… oh, and play baseball. We have a six-hour flight to blog about next week, so stay tuned. The big question on everybody’s mind is when Corey Shea will write his first "Extra Innings" blog post. I can feel the anticipation building…