Saturday, April 30, 2005


As a card carrying member of the journalism honorary Sigma Delta Chi, (Miami U chapter) I must be very careful about today’s Diamond Dust. Like the Dirtbag players I started getting my game face on in the morning between phone calls and emails about a golf coach. As it got closer to 5 p.m. I hit the 405 North and then turned east on the 110 and crawled my way through San Pedro. Drunk, GIS broke, nope--keeping a promise to skip the game and attend the wedding of super fan Jack Peter’s daughter Jackie who I have known since she was about two.

Jack was a pretty fine infielder in his day, went to Oregon State, but his late father Bill served LBSU for 28 years. Father, son and grand daughter went to all sorts of athletic contests. Jackie had a huge crush on Scott Rivette who apparently never could see the beauty behind a 14 year old’s braces. So as I wound my way up PV to Wayfarer’s Chapel I knew my job was to keep the father of the bride posted on the baseball game. The wedding started at 6 so no distractions though the flower girls and parent’s getting to the front of the church. About the time of Cesar Ramos’s first pitch at Blair the groom, Nathan Lowe, made his first pitch. I waited until the minister let the couple seal the deal with a kiss and then called the press box to find that I hadn’t missed a thing in the first. Or the second. Or the third. I kind of expected that Cesar would regain his touch and hold the Aggies out of the barn but Davis starter Dave McKae got into the act and pitched to the minimum through five, using just 58 pitches.

Leaving the chapel I sped down the hill to the fancy South End Racquet Club for the reception. In the entry way they had one of those big sign-in boards where people write wishes to the B & G. I wrote a note to Jack, “0-0, top of the fifth” so my fellow fan could sneak a peek before shaking hands, kissing strangers, and getting out his credit cards. I found my seat at Big Jose’s table with his lovely daughters, Dulce (that means sweet in Spanish) and Linda (that means Linda in Spanish.) In the sixth those stingy Dirtbag hitters gave Ramos all that they figured he would need, a measly one run. Jordan Struble led off the inning with a single to leftfield and then what staff reports describe as “two perfectly placed bunt base hits” but a Bag on every bag. Tom Sarti banged a heater to shortstop Brandon Oliver who muffed it and the run went up. I told the father of the bride the good news and we both exhaled. What we didn’t know was that Ramos (now 9-4 and a 1.56 ERA) would need just 98 pitches and rack up his fourth complete game. Just for fun the Beach boys bought a little insurance in the eighth thanks largely to the bat work of Sean Boatright and Troy Tulowitzki who both had two hit nights. Baseball done, it was time to get the green out and buy some dances from the bride, her lovely mom Thelma, and I think a couple of the caterers but the rum punch was kicking in by then.

DUST ON THE RICE—the second half of tonight of course is the MPSF championship agin Pepperdine at Pepperdine…correspondent Andy Read reports “We are getting over the net and either stuffing or controlling almost everything the Gauchos can throw at us. On offense, they don’t have an answer for both Tarr and Sliti on our two pins … today’s Bag mound man has a mom who loves him and told the Daily News "He's my baby, my only baby, and I would be proud of him even if his talent was just the ability to jump on one leg. But to see him up there on the mound, doing what he loves and doing it very, very well…It's like a dream."…go Sylvia, you tell the truth….the paper goes on to quote T Buck, who agreed that nobody saw any of this coming for Estrada…”We had no idea, to be perfectly honest," Buckley said… closing numbers from Friday’s BWC scoreboard…Cal Poly 10, Sacramento State 3; Fullerton 9, UC Santa Barbara 1, UC Irvine 15, Cal State Northridge 2, and Riverside 14, Pacific at 11—DR. DAN


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