A Game to Savor

March 17, 2016

Once a year, the Davis High Baseball program (actually the parents) pay a lot of money for the opportunity to play at Raley Field. Raley is where the Giants’ AAA farm team (the River Cats) plays. It’s a real major league baseball venue, and a beautiful stadium right on the Sacramento River, adjacent to historic Old Sac and a few long blocks from the State Capitol. The field is immaculately groomed. Suffice to say, it’s a treat.

It’s such a unique opportunity that Dan makes sure all seniors, playing their last year of high school ball, get a chance to play. It’s why Peter didn’t play last year, but got the nod tonight as starting pitcher.

And what a perfect night for baseball. After a couple weeks of rain–and numerous rained out games–this week has been clear and fairly warm. So tonight was warmish and breeze free, which brought out a good crowd, too.

Peter was told that if he pitched well, he might go long. He did, and he did. Five innings. That’s very long for a seven-inning game, especially this early in the season.

But damn, he pitched well!

Non baseball people, feel free to skip this braggy, basebally paragraph:

As I said, he went 5 innings. The first three innings were all 3-up, 3-down, with a total of four strike outs. He was in great control and throwing a ton of strikes. He gave up his first (and only) hit in the fourth–a line drive into left–but got three fly outs for another quick (only 8 pitches quick) and dirty inning. I thought for sure he was done at that point, but Dan sent him out for a fifth. He retired the first on a fly out and added another strike out, but then Hunter dropped one of those sky-high fly balls, which probably got lost in the lights as he ran in circles in front of the plate (those are very difficult catches), for an error. Peter then gave up his first (and only) walk (on a B-S-S-B-B full count), which suddenly gave him two base runners to contend with, which seemed like a lot of action in an otherwise efficient outing. ¬†Parents fidget. Ah, but then…he drew a routine fly ball to the ever-reliable Solly in center to end that inning. Actually, the photo in the paper suggests that it was anything but a routine fly ball; Solly caught it on a dead run toward the dreaded no-man’s land (average outfielders will let that one bounce for a frustrating hit, but never Solly), following which he rolled forward, as he does. Parents breathe sigh of relief (and glance back to Solly’s parents a few rows back and mouth a grateful, “thank you”). And that was that! He faced 18 batters in 5 innings, struck out 5, walked 1, gave up 1 hit, and no runs. He threw 61 pitches, 75% of which were strikes (that was my favorite stat). The whole thing was just GREAT. ¬†Hey, ya wanna see what the scoresheet looked like? Here it is:



And here’s what it looked like out there, on a mild, glowy, still night:


At this point, Davis was up 4-0 and we just had to hold them for two more innings. Ray came out in the 6th and faced three batters. He struck out their number two batter, but wasn’t his sharpest, so Danny came in and got the two outs necessary to end that inning. Danny came back in the top of the final inning. He was also throwing well; he drew easy-to-field responses from the first two Rocklin batters, then decisively struck out the next, and final, batter to end the game.

7-zip, Davis.

A one-hitter.

And a shut out.

And with that, Davis’ record extends to an official 4-0 on the season. (8-0 if you include the pre-season scrimmages, which nobody but me, it seems, does.)

The rest of the season will hopefully include some more good Peter-pitching-outings, and will undoubtedly include some not so good outings. But this one is one to savor.

And speaking of savor…after the game, a handful headed over to In ‘n Out for a very late dinner…


(Reed, Griffin, Peter and Ray, all with mouths full.)