THE CARDINALS FEND OFF A GRITTY TP RALLY BID IN THE FINAL INNING TO SCOOT BY TORONTO PLAYGROUNDS FOR THE 2023 EBA 11U SELECT VICTORY AT CHRISTIE PITS
Under a sombre canopy of cloudy skies, the Royal York 11U Boy Cardinals prevailed 10-7 over the Toronto Playgrounds 11U Selects in a five inning Etobicoke Baseball Association (EBA) 11U Select Loop game tonight at Christie Pits Diamond 3.
In the top portion of the first, the Royal York Boys threatened after a walk and two derring-do steals by Lucas (9) that put him into scoring position at third base.
Unfazed, TP 11U starter Dylan (8) kept Royal York off the scoring ledger by chalking up a groundout, pop out and fly out to end the Cardinals mutiny in the first inning.
Kudos to TP third baseman William (8) for reeling in an eight mile high pop up off the bat of Ben O (97) for the second out and TP centre fielder Ellis (44) for making a nice catch on a hard hit shot off the bat of Marcus (2) for the third out.
Toronto Playgrounds jumped out to an early 4-0 lead in the bottom of the first frame. After a leadoff walk by Issy (1), Dylan followed with a dramatic double that put two TP runners on the dance floor.
Following a walk by Cole (23) that loaded the bases, Dominic (24) delivered a RBI hit that advanced Dylan and Cole respectively to third and second base, and brought Issy home with the opening run of the proceedings.
With the bases still packed tighter than a can of StarKist tuna, Ellis, Owen (14) and Julian (6) gathered together at the Mandarin Buffet line and drew respective bases loaded RBI walks that allowed Dylan, Cole and Dominic to come homeward with three more TP runs.
Refusing to concede an inch, the Royal York 11U Boys answered back with a pair of runs in the top of the second inning that sliced the shortfall to 4-2.
After back to back walks by Zachary (11) and Drew (29) that put a pair of Cardinals on the bird feeder, Alden (6) connected for a one out RBI single that moved Drew to third base and brought Zachary home with the Royal York Boys first run of the game.
Subsequently, with two outs and a runner on third base, Drew took advantage of a TP wild pitch to blaze home with another run for the Cardinals.
With true grit, TP 11U starter Dylan rang up two strikeouts and a pop out to terminate the Royal York uprising in the second frame.
Not taking things lying down, TP 11U threatened again in the bottom portion of the second frame.
Following a leadoff walk by Adam (11), Issy garnered a one out walk that put two TP runners on the basepaths.
With TP runners at third and second base, the Royal York defence rose to the challenge and came up with two big fly ball outs that put a kibosh on the TP offensive thrust.
Royal York 11U Boys reliever Zachary tallied a strikeout and a pair of fly outs to keep TP off the scoreboard in the second frame.
Taking flight, the Royal York 11U Boys exploded for four runs in the top of the third to take a 6-4 lead.
After reaching base with a leadoff single, Ben W advanced to third base courtesy of a stolen base and a TP error. Ben O followed with a RBI groundout that allowed Ben W to scoot home with a Cardinals run that trimmed the deficit to one.
Following a walk by Lucas and a hard single by Marcus that put two Cardinals on the bird bath, Drew connected for a grace under pressure two out two RBI triple that brought Lucas and Marcus homeward with Royal York’s go ahead runs.
After a walk by William (8) that put two Red Birds on base, Drew took full advantage of a TP wild pitch to blaze home with another Cardinals run.
TP 11U reliever Dominic tallied a groundout and strikeout against the Cards in the third frame.
Trailing by two, TP 11U’s bottom of the third got off to an exhilarating start after Dominic led off the inning with a searing leadoff double. As he tried to stretch his hit into a triple, the Royal York defence rose to challenge and erased Dominic on a sparkling 7-5 play to tally the first out.
Toronto Playgrounds continued to ratchet up the pressure on the Cardinals. Following a one out walk, Owen turned on the afterburners and swiped his way around the horn to third base with Grand Theft aplomb.
With no desire to pussyfoot around the marigold bush, Royal York 11U reliever Marcus tallied two strikeouts to end the TP insurgency in the third frame.
Putting the pedal to the metal, the Royal York 11U Boys added four doubloons to their treasure trove in the top half of the fourth to widen their plurality to 10-4.
After a two out single by Jacob (3), Ben W stroked a RBI hit that brought Jacob home with a Cardinals run.
Following Ben W’s advancement to third base with a couple of handy dandy steals, Ben O drew a walk that put Royal York runners on the corners. After TP uncorked another wild pitch, Ben O moved over to second base and Ben W. scooted homeward with another Cardinals run.
After a theft of third base by Ben O, Lucas delivered a clutch RBI double that allowed Ben O to score a Royal York run.
Following a walk by Marcus that put a pair of Red Birds at third and first base, Zachary connected for a RBI single that advanced Marcus to second base and brought Lucas homeward with another Cardinals run.
In a nitty gritty two inning foray on the hill, TP 11U reliever Dominic tallied a pair of groundouts and two pop outs versus Royal York.
Refusing to go quietly into the night, Toronto Playgrounds continued to battle in the bottom half of the fourth.
After stroking a single, Dylan stole second base with with unabashed passion in a bid to ignite the slumbering TP attack.
Taking care of business, Royal York 11U reliever Marcus chalked up a strikeout and two groundouts that vanquished the TP threat in the fourth frame.
With a constant craving to add a few more insurance runs to their nest egg, the Royal York 11U Boys threatened again in the top vector of the fifth inning.
After garnering a walk, William swiped a pair of bases with Grand Theft style to get into scoring position at third base.
Staring bravely into the teeth of 10-4 deficit, the pesky TP 11U Selects refused to throw in the towel in the bottom of the fifth as they proudly donned their rally caps in a final bid to change their fate.
Following a leadoff walk by Dominic, Ellis slashed a scorching line drive into centre field. As Dominic motored towards second base, Royal York centre fielder Drew sucked up the ball up the ball like a Kirby vacuum cleaner and made a rocket throw to Royal York shortstop Ben W. to tally an exquisite 8-6 chitty chitty bang bang force out play at second that erased Dominic for the first out.
Unperturbed after reaching base on a fielder’s choice, Ellis kept TP’s comeback hopes alive with a pair of snazzy steals that got him to third base.
Reinvigorated by Ellis’ tour de force on the basepaths, Owen and Julian exercised patience at the dish and drew back to back one out walks to load the bases. With savvy determination, Sydney connected for a RBI single that brought Ellis home with a TP run.
With the bases still juiced to the gills, Issy followed with a RBI hit that allowed Owen to hustle homeward with another TP run.
As the bases remained loaded like a tasty beef burrito, Dylan delivered a RBI single that brought Julian home with a TP run.
With the bases still jammed tighter than Lakeshore Boulevard East and the Cardinals lead whittled down to three, TP’s potential go ahead run came up to bat with one out.
Shaken, but not stirred, Royal York 11U Boys reliever Ben O found his his Mojo Jojo and reeled off a strikeout and pop out to vanquish the valiant TP comeback bid and seal the deal on a hard fought victory for the Cardinals.