Game 129 // First Inning, Baltimore // The Orioles Are Dead

FIRST INNING: ROYALS 10 (0) – 0 ORIOLES

 

You’re at home. You’re 8-26 on the year. You have no hope.

But you’re facing the Royals. They’re just a hair better than you. It’s the first inning and something about every game is a new day.

And then, Jorge Soler comes up, takes a hack at a fastball over the plate, and Gary Thorne announces the beginning of the end of the Baltimore Orioles 2018 season.

“High in the air, that is deep center field, and goodbye home run.”

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Game 128 // Ninth Inning, Houston // Cory Blaser—What’s Going on, Big Guy?

BOTTOM OF THE NINTH: ANGELS 2 – 0 ASTROS

 

Two days in a row now, a ballgame has ended with a walk-off replay review.

Bottom of the 9th, home team down by two, a runner called safe.

Then, a challenge, a review, and a reversal.

And an umpire. One umpire. The same umpire. Crouching in position on Sunday, crouching on Monday, crouching and making a terrible call.

Cory Blaser—what’s going on, big guy?

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Game 127 // Eighth Inning, New York // The Kings of Queens

BOTTOM OF THE EIGHTH: METS 11 (2) – 4 NATIONALS

 

The Mets, tonight, sat on the edge of a giant cliff. The letters SWEEP written into the dirt of the plains below.

The Washington Nationals poking them with a stick, their toes inching closer, closer, to the edge—to the point where that N.L East lead might collapse back toward the imaginary.

And then, this eighth inning.

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Game 126 // Eighth Inning, New York // The Broken Bat Home Run

TOP OF THE EIGHTH: NATIONALS 7 (1) – 6 METS

 

The Nationals scored six runs in the eighth inning to make a stunning comeback against the Mets who so far on the season have beaten the odds to take the division lead and—

Forget all that.

Did you see what Bryce Harper did, in the third inning?

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Game 125 // Ninth Inning, New York // You Still Believe in Me

NINTH INNING: METS 3 (2) – 2 BREWERS

 

I need a resident Mets fan here.

Like those guys on Pawn Stars they bring in to give prices on Batman action figures and signed photos of The Monkees.

After a win like this, come down to the store and tell me: are you letting yourself believe?

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Game 124 // Eighth Inning, Chicago // The Calliope Crashed to the Ground

BOTTOM OF THE EIGHTH: CUBS 14 (5) – 10 BRAVES

 

It’s not yet halfway to May, and we may have seen the wildest inning of 2018.

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Game 123 // Fourteenth Inning, New York // You’ll Always Have This, O’s Fans

TOP OF THE FOURTEENTH: ORIOLES 7 (3) – 3 YANKEES

 

Week one of the 2018 baseball season, done. Back to a world where standings matter, where the contenders emerge.

Where the Orioles, in some sort of universe where five-month-long spans of luck exist, just might be able to stick around for an AL East race. Continue reading “Game 123 // Fourteenth Inning, New York // You’ll Always Have This, O’s Fans”

Game 122 // Sixth Inning, Pittsburgh // Baseball Winterland

TOP OF THE SIXTH: TWINS 6 (2) – PIRATES 3

 

The bullpen guys are rubbing their arms together, hopping around in their coats—as if whoever looks goofiest might be the last one picked to pitch.

It’s snowing, in April.

Whitecaps are swarming the surface of the Allegheny River.

A fleet of pirate ships are stuck in the ice. Clint Hurdle’s pegleg has frozen. His parrot has died. His eye patch whitens with frost. Continue reading “Game 122 // Sixth Inning, Pittsburgh // Baseball Winterland”

Game 121 // First Inning, Anaheim // The Age of Ohtani

BOTTOM OF THE FIRST: ANGELS 6 (0) – 2 INDIANS

 

This league is in desperate need of a superstar.

A household name. A neighborhood name, a village name, a national name. From California to New York Island. From the red wood forest to the Gulf Stream waters.

This land was made for Shohei Ohtani.

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