After an entire month of agricultural and meteorological delays, the 2009 spring kickball season finally began last night. Under the lights in Hoboken’s Momma Johnson Park, our team of select individuals assembled to do battle in that most hallowed of playground traditions.
I’m happy to report that we started the season off with a big win. In our new powder blue team t-shirts (yet another shade to add to our rainbow collection from previous seasons), we played our very best against our lime green opponents. Not even a final April shower could stop us. We were up 10 – 0 by the third inning, and I think the final score was something around 14 – 3. I don’t know for sure. We very rarely manage to keep track of the score. Or the batting order. Or the number of outs.
Now, some of you are probably saying to your tree-hugging, organic-tofu-munching selves, how could they willfully slaughter a team so thoroughly, particularly in light of the fact that the challengers weren’t playing at full strength and gave a new definitive meaning to the term “butterfingers”? I’ll tell you how. It’s because we aren’t really that good. Sure, we led by a wide margin through most of the game, but we’ve blown even wider leads in the past. We don’t take chances. We play as if it’s always do-or-die, top of the seventh, with two or so outs, and perhaps the tying run on base. Nothing is taken for granted, and if that outlook means that we come off looking like vicious, empty, heathens desperate for a scrap of satisfaction as fleeting as an intramural victory…well, that’s something we can live with.
Yours truly had a solid opening night, making two choice grabs in right field and rounding the bases twice. Spitz and Scott split time on the mound, rolling some excellent pitches down the line. Volpe was MIA, so Nate filled in at first and adapted quite quickly to his new responsibilities. There were home runs from Kish (who only had to hop a fence once) and, most surprisingly, Scott. Watching his stubby legs carry him around the bases was an exciting moment. In addition to Volpe, Jenny, Stacy, and Jeff were missing from the opener. Bad form, rookie. As a back-up, Karl brought his friend Todd (or in some circles, Caleb) along. He did all right his first time out. He won major points for unwittingly wearing pants that perfectly matched our t-shirts.
So, is this going to be the norm this season, or will we look back wistfully on this one game as the sole bright spot in another disappointing season?
The next game is Monday at 8:10. Another report will follow.
P.S: I promise pictures in the future. I had my camera with me for the opening game. Sadly, my battery was not in it. Epic fail.
Game 1 Brief
Record: 1 – 0
MVP of the Week: Scott – Not just for his reliable pitching or his unprecedented home run, but for his deft handling of a line drive as his body simultaneous failed on him. Bobbling the ball, he was a tangle of limbs, crashing to the hay-covered ground, managing at the final moment to clench the ball between his thighs and hold on tighter than a sorority girl on a mechanical bull. The out was good. Real Good.
Weekly “Not En Fuego” Award: Pete – For having bigger eyes than his stomach…or feet. Booting the ball deep into left center, Pete sauntered along the bases, confidently rounding third…only to slip on the wet hay and fall flat on his ass. Scrambling back to the bag, the throw beat him and he was out.
Quote of the Game: “What’s that? Your balls are wet?” ~ Rachel