THE WHITE SOX PREVAIL OVER TORONTO PLAYGROUNDS IN A CRACKERJACK AFFAIR AT CHRISTIE PITS
Beneath a gentle layer of warm summer skies, the Martingrove White edged the Toronto Playgrounds Rookie Ball Selects 8-7 in seven crisp innings of Etobicoke Baseball Association (EBA) Rookie Ball Select action this evening at Christie Pits Diamond 3.
The proceeding was an entertaining and well played crackerjack contest between two talented teams. In the end, a gritty White Sox squad staved off late rally bid by a pesky TP team to take home the prize.
Martingrove jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the top of the first. Following a single and advancement to second base by Tristano (22), Matthew (19) stroked a one out RBI single to bring him home with the opening run of the game.
After a double by Brayden (23) that advanced Matthew to third, Justin (29) delivered a RBI single that moved Brayden to third and allowed Matthew to motor home with a run.
With runners at third and first, Oscar (9) hit into a fielder’s choice that erased Justin at second and delivered Brayden home.
In the bottom of the second, TP tallied a run to trim the margin to 3-1. After reaching base on a fielder’s choice, Michael (31) advanced to second on a White Sox error. Ciaran (2) followed with a clutch two out RBI single that brought Michael home with TP’s first run.
Not to be outdone, Martingrove answered back with a run in the top portion of the third to widen their lead to 4-1. After a pair of two out singles by Ben (28) and Tristano that put two mallards on the lake, Matthew stroked a RBI single that delivered Ben home.
After TP went down quietly in the bottom of the third, the White Sox tallied another pair in the top of the fourth to increase their advantage to 6-1. After a leadoff single by Justin, Nathaniel (34) singled with one out to put two aboard. Josh (99) followed with a RBI single that brought Justin home.
Following a single by Braeden (3) that loaded the bases, Mike (7) stroked a RBI single that allowed Nanthaniel to come home to roost.
Refusing to go quietly into the abyss, TP exploded for three runs in the bottom half of the fourth to close the gap to 6-4. After a leadoff single by Jack (1), Nico (38) stroked a single that put two ducklings on the pond. Henry (3) followed with a one out two RBI double that allowed Jack and Nico to come homeward and do the shimmy, shimmy, shake.
Subsequently, with two outs, Ciaran entered the batter’s box and delivered a grace under pressure RBI single that brought Henry homeward.
In quick response to the TP salvo, Martingrove replied with a pair in the top of the fifth to pump their lead to 8-4. Adrian (15), Ben and Tristano hit consecutive singles to open the inning and load the bases. Matthew followed and hit into a fielder’s choice that erased Ben at third, advanced Tristano to second and brought Adrian home with a run.
With two outs and two aboard, Justin delivered a clutch RBI single that allowed Tristano to score.
In true grit fashion, Toronto Playgrounds struck back with three in the bottom of the sixth to slice and dice the deficit to one. Nico ignited the team and fans in the bleacher seats by delivering majestic triple to lead off the inning. A White Sox error on the play allowed Nico to shimmy home with the peameal bacon.
Eamon (13) and Henry followed with respective back to back singles to put a pair of capybaras on the diamond. Michael stepped up and delivered a RBI groundout that brought Eamon home. As Henry slid with authority into third base on the play, an overthrow faux pas by the Martingrove defence allowed him to shimmy home and make it an 8-7 game.
In the top of the seventh, the TP defence made a pair of Gold Glove plays to keep the White Sox off the scoring ledger and keep it a one run game. TP shortstop Malito (20) snagged a hot tamale shot off the bat of Mike in the shoestrings of his glove and made a laser throw across the diamond to first baseman Henry to ring up a sweet 6-3 putout for the first out. Subsequently, with two outs and a Martingrove runner on first, pitcher Zach (8) caught a sizzler off the bat of Ben and had the acumen to make a throw to second base to tally a pretty 1-4 putout for the third out.
Clinging to a slender tenderloin 8-7 lead, the White Sox turned in three stellar defensive gems in the bottom of the seventh to retire TP in 1-2-3 fashion and put a kibosh on their comeback bid. Martingrove shortstop Matthew snagged a smoking line drive off the bat of Malito to ring up the first out.
White Sox pitcher Tristano battled the darkness to catch an eight mile high pop up off the bat of Caz (7) to tally the second out. And for the pièce de résistance, Matthew hustled into left field to make a dramatic snow cone catch on fly ball off the bat of Max (18) to chalk up the final out and bring the curtain down on the proceedings.
The TP Rookie Ball Selects (2-8-1) continue their homestand at Christie Pits Diamond 3 with a EBA Select doubleheader this Sunday (August 11) against the Weston Wolverines (1:30 p.m.) and Bloordale Gold (4:00 p.m.).