Saturday, April 07, 2007

NINTH INNING DIRTBAG DRAMA AS VETS CLINE AND SHAW HELP LB WIN SIXTH 2007 SERIES

Matt Cline had a busy night in a contest that Dirtbag skipper Mike Weathers said was "bad baseball all around. They just let us stay in the game long enough to win." And win they did 8-7 in a not-so-fan-friendly four hours five minutes that featured five recorded errors by the Oral Roberts (15-14) and several dinks and dunks that Weathers and a good part of the 1157 thought might also have been miscues. "We won but we didn't play championship baseball." The other not-so-fan-friendly moment came from an observed gesture by the Eagles man-mountain first baseman Chad Rothford who after he got his first hit of the weekend (and scored his first and only run) signaled that number to the Niner student section.

For the good guys Cline went 3-for-4 before battling ORU closer Erik Crichton (of nearby Seal Beach) to a 3-2 count with two out before his free pass pushed Chris Nelson's winning run across. Long Beach upped their record to 16-11, and notched another series win. The other good news was that the Niners troubled closer Bryan Shaw (now 3-2 and the last of seven LB pitchers) got the final two outs in the top of the ninth to pick up the win. Omar Arif (1-4, 3.20) goes for the Bags against ORU's Chris Ashman (2-3, 5.45).

DUSTING THE PEANUT SHELLS--the visitors are staying in high cotton, the Doubletree Disneyland which makes me wonder why they aren't buying a LB hotel…likely the NCAA will be around to finish looking at the possible extra benefits in the Reynolds regime…small change I suspect but I was reminded of that nifty HBO documentary on UCLA with a segment on their big buck booster Sam "Papa G" Gilbert…they say he's not around to help the current Bruins because he now resides in an er, ah very warm climate…although he was roughed up at the time the press box said that "Manny McElroy, making his first start and appearance since February 10, lasted a pre-determined 40 pitches, going two and two-third innings"…that spotty D and some timely swings by ORU resulted in three unearned runs before he left…Shane Peterson was fairly straight and flat in the 4th and allowed three runs including a solo homer…oddly ORU's Rothford was the MVP of the Arkansas regional last year but is hitting only .214 with a team leading 26 Ks this season…inside, the Beach effort was close but no cigar…the University of Hawai'i was able to survive a huge LB rally and win their seventh straight match, 30-27, 30-20, 22-30, 27-30, 19-17 win…senior salute is tonight in the Mid so for you that started the day at the Mid's 10 a.m. intro of new hoop coach Dan Monson, then migrated to women's water polo at noon before baseball you can actually not do anything worthwhile all day and night... at Cal Poly the Niner softballers lost twice to the BWC leading Mustangs 3-1 and 6-1…get away game this afternoon…nice salute to LB SS Danny Espinosa and his golden glove…sayeth Golden Eagle radio guy Geoff Haxton, who after a deep in the hole tough run, catch and throw said, "that guy can just rip the heart of out a team"…still not big crowds this weekend but the first lady of the 49ers, Pat West, had a good excuse, she was at the Frozen Four in St. Louis watching grandson Travis Ramsey play for the Maine Black Bears…sticking with post season dreams, Baseball America has picked an early NCAA 64 team field and on paper have the Niners at Stillwater with host Oklahoma State, TCU and would you know, ORU…Fullerton is pegged as a host with San Diego, Hawaii and UCLA coming in and Irvine is projected to go to Tempe with ASU, Mississippi State and Manhattan…don't book any travel just yet...scoreboarding, Cal Poly 9, Northridge 8 (11); Fullerton 10, UC Irvine 2; UC Davis 10, Pacific 5; and Santa Barbara 5, UC Riverside 4…next up for the Niners is Pepperdine Tuesday at 5 p.m. with the completion of the 7-7 Feb 6 tie game and the scheduled contest 30 minutes after…the Waves and LMU play today again on CSTV nationally and the Niner clipboards are taping as they play…the Pepps had a 7-0 lead over LBSU in Malibu but the 49ers took advantage of eight walks and a dramatic three-run home run by Danny Espinosa in the eighth inning….the game would ended by darkness before the Waves could bat in the bottom of the ninth inning….players who started and then left that game can not reenter…anybody else is fine…next weekend it is time for hit happy CSUN…Friday the Mats gave up a double to the gap in left-center for a 9-8 loss in front of 1,330 at Baggett Stadium…and our closing quote is about Evan Longoria…"We said when we took him that he was No. 1 on our draft board," Tampa Bay Devil Rays general manager Andrew Friedman said. "If we had the first pick, that's who we would have taken. He's still exceeded our expectations, and I have a feeling he's going to do that for many years to come. I have a feeling he's going to have a very, very successful major-league career." Me too.--DR. DAN

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April 7, 2007 at 8:55 AM  

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