Pirates knocked out of playoffs
“It ain’t over til it’s over.”
The Blue Earth Pirates, and their fans, had a painful reminder of just how true the Yogi Berra quote is when the Morristown Morries rallied from a nine-run deficit in the top of the ninth inning to defeat the Pirates 15-14 on Sunday, Aug. 9.
With the loss Blue Earth was eliminated from post-season play.
The Pirates seemingly had the game in hand and almost ended the game in the bottom of the eighth inning via the 10-run rule. The Pirates scored a couple of runs in the bottom of the eighth and had the bases loaded when Morristown got out of the inning. Had Blue Earth scored one more run, the game would have been over and the Pirates would have won.
Garrett Anderson had pitched the first eight innings for the Pirates during the hot, humid Sunday afternoon game. He was relieved in the top of the ninth and everything went downhill from there.
Morristown had scored six runs and trailed Blue Earth 14-11. The bases were loaded and there were two outs. One more out would have ended the game and given Blue Earth the victory.
Instead, the Morristown batter did what every young boy dreams of doing. He hit a two-out bases loaded grand slam home run to give the Morries a 15-14 lead before the Pirates recorded the final out of the inning.
Blue Earth got their lead-off runner on in the bottom of the ninth inning. Unfortunately, the next batter popped up his bunt attempt and Morristown was able to double up the runner on first base so the Pirates were down to their last out.
An error by the Morries’ third baseman kept the Pirates’ hopes alive. But, the game and Blue Earth’s season ended when the next batter hit a grounder which forced out the runner at second base.
Blue Earth out hit Morristown and scored in seven of the nine innings.
Tournament play continued in Blue Earth on Aug. 15. Four games of the Region 6C tournament were scheduled for the day. Games were scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. and conclude with a 7 p.m. contest to crown the Region 6C champion.
Blue Earth 4,
Lee Hodges scattered four hits while pitching a complete game shut out and the Blue Earth Pirates defeated the Henderson Tigers 4-0 on Saturday, Aug. 8, in Blue Earth.
The game was scoreless through the first three innings before the Pirates put two runs on the board in the bottom of the fourth inning.
TJ Stallman led off the inning with an opposite field single for the Pirates. A sacrifice bunt by TJ Schmidtke moved Stallman to second base.
Brandyn Olsen was out on a grounder to short with Stallman taking third. An error by the Henderson third baseman on a ball off the bat of Garrett Anderson allowed Stallman to score and Anderson to reach second base.
A single to left field by Kane Malo scored Anderson to give Blue Earth a 2-0 lead.
The Pirates added two more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Stallman walked and took second on an infield out. A double to left field by Olsen scored Stallman. Anderson came through with a double to plate Olsen and give Blue Earth a 4-0 lead.
Hodges gave up a lead-off single in the top of the fourth inning. The runner was erased on a double play before third baseman Malo made a nice play on a slow roller to record the final out of the inning.
Hodges then downed the Tigers in order in the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth innings.
The final statistics for the game showed Blue Earth with four runs on seven hits. The Pirates did not commit any errors.
Hodges got the win while recording six strike outs. The Pirates turned two double plays in the game.