Notes for Game 08
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Game date: Aug 13, 2012

Score Box
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H HR
B & V Testing
0 3 9 1 1 6 2   22 X 5
5 0 0 3 0 5 1   14 23 0
Game Media
Stats from the Game

A look at the fielding work done by A-WOL the weekend before the game. (Wolan)
Coach’s Game Analysis:

Weather and Field Conditions:
Sunny and warm, low 80’s; Great day for a game. Humidity was around 60o, but was not a factor. Sun was a factor for people playing in right field.

A-WOL worked the infield on Saturday morning, removing standing water and leveling the dirty around home, 1B, 2B, 3B and the pitching mound. Heavy rains on Sunday helped pack-in the soil so it would not be loose at game time. Areas serviced were in an ideal condition for sliding. Overall, infield was soft but maneuverable. Outfield grass was a little tall, slowing-down grounders.

Worked line-up before the game. Top half of line-up played-out about as well as I could have hoped. Bottom half played-out as expected. A clutch hit of two in that area would have made things interesting.

Patsy has been making solid contact in her at bats and should remain near top of line-up. Melissa is having a good year overall at the plate, despite the arm and wrist injuries. May want to consider anchoring her at the #8 spot.

B&V’s defense was good, and had a solid SS. Shallow CF was not covered at all, which was a great area to try and poke base hits into.

Infield as a whole was good. Matt was good as usual, but was off on a few throws to 1B. Outfield was pretty good as well, considering the rotation of people in and out. Mark V. is starting to develop into a good outfielder over the past few games.

Melissa has no trouble catching hard line drives at her, but has trouble going after pop-flys. She admits that she needs more practice and coaching on fielding such balls. In the future, may want to consider placing her at 1B.

Team as whole has trouble making plays on short hits. (IE, hits that land short of the mound.) Can compensate by either having a second FOF play in as a FIF, give our catchers practice in attacking such plays, or by placing a second catcher. Unless there is a batter that makes such hits consistently, there is no real need to worry about defending such hits.

B&V Hitting:
B&V was hitting the ball primarily to LF, with some to the left-center. One hitter (a righty) was pulling the ball into right field. Their heavy hitters were swinging for the fences and having success. (5 went over-the-fence for homeruns and one ball hit the fence.)

B&V was observed using a red Miken© bat, which allows the ball to travel at a faster velocity when struck than a regular aluminum bat. Teams use these bats because the ball can travel a greater distance. While not illegal in this league, these 100% composite bats are forbidden in other leagues because they do not retard the speed of the ball after it makes contact with the bat. A faster ball requires a quicker reaction time to those playing the infield. This is dangerous for infielders in a league whose players do not practice much, if at all.

Game Highlights:

Memorable Events:
 - A family of rabbits was having dinner in the outfield by the fence. They were poking through the fence between batters and would scurry away when a ball was hit in their area.
 - It was learned that Melissa drives-in from Lowell, MA to attend these games. Talk about dedication.
 - A-WOL was wearing cleats he purchased in 2003, while Mark V. sported cleats from 1998.
 - Game was the Verdasys Softball début for “Vinny” Gillespie. Was 2 for 3 (2B) with a run and an RBI. Hit a double in first team at-bat.
 - During his first at-bat, A-WOL was swinging the bat erratically behind his head, reminiscent of Wade Boggs. Struck his head with bat, producing a metallic “ding” sound. He then fell to the ground. Was stunned and shocked more than anything else because despite the lack of pain, he knew he made contact with his head. He is believed to have hit the metal button at the top of his ball cap and not his skull.
 - B&V HRs: HR over RF fence (looked like a ground rule double from the distance), solo HR into the trees into CF, HR over LF scoreboard, HR into CF in nearly the same spot as before. Ball retrieved after the first HR into CF was not the original game ball, but a one hit from some other game. B&V also had an ITP HR in the 2nd.
 - Game lasted 1:30. Had to speed-up the final inning because it was getting dark.
 - Johnny Pesky passed away before the game. Was 92.

Tom C:2 for 2 (SAC, 3B) with 2 runs and 4 RBIs.
Russ:3 for 3 with 3 runs and 2 RBIs.
Matt:3 for 3 (2B) with 2 runs and an RBI.
Patsy:2 for 2 (SAC) with 2 RBIs.
Melissa:2 for 3 with a run and a RBI.

Verdasys:1-2-4 inning in first. (Matt F6; Matt to Bill 6-3; Kevin to Bill 5-3)
B&V:Outfield assist by tagging out A-WOL trying to stretch a single into a double. Was also the final out of a 1-2-“3” inning. (2nd)
Bill:caught a high throw from Matt to make put-out at 1B. (3rd)
B&V:6-4-3 double play. (3rd)
Mark V:leaping –up behind-the-head catch of a flyball hit near the left field line while playing FOF in shallow LF. (4th)
Vin:Great catch in deep line-drive CF to end the 5th.
B&V SS:Line-drive snag at short to rob Gowtham of a base hit. (6th)
Verdasys:Gave-up 2 or fewer runs over 4 innings, including 2 shut-out innings.

 - A-WOL scored career run #25 with Verdasys Softball in the 6th. Ties team record set by Ryan Grimard.

A-WOL Watch:

My regular cleats were wet after being washed following practice and grounds keeping work on Saturday. Used cleats purchased in 2003 instead.

2 for 3 (2B) with a run scored. Tied Verdasys team record for career run scored with Verdasys. (25.)
 - Flair into shallow CF (blue bat). Tagged out trying to stretch hit into a double. (Was a close play, but throw and tag were good.) Someone from bench said to take 2nd. Use best judgment next time on such short hits.
 - Pop-up into shallow RF that dropped for a hit. (Black bat.) Slid into 2B to secure a double. Slid into 3B on Tim N. infield SAC. Slid into home on Vins’s infield single.
 - Pop-up between the mound and home plate. (Black bat.) Swung at a screwy pitch outside but letters high. Should not go after such pitches when using heavy bat because it’s harder to control the heavier bat when off-balanced.

Need warm-up tosses at the start of game. Glasses are a little different from my regular glasses, causing me to miss balls ever so slightly when thrown to me until my eyes get used to things. (Had warm-up tosses for this game.)

Played CF and RF. A few touches, no put-outs.
 - As CF, retrieved a ball that was hit up the middle.
 - As RF, chased a pop-fly hit into shallow RF. Was charging at the ball but had to let-up because I saw Melissa back-peddled toward ball. She did not hear me call the ball.

Bat Swing Observation:
During the course of the season, I developed a swing that allows me to consistently drive the ball into CF. The key is to start the swing with my left shoulder perpendicular with my torso. What this does is force me to drive the bat with my left arm instead of my right. Such swings will be a bit slower, causing the ball to be hit more towards the right. This swing style also causes the bat to be swung at an angle favoring CF over LF.

If I make good contact with the ball, it will go into CF. Decent contact usually leads to something hit toward 2B. If my bat is tilted at a slight backwards angle when swung, the ball will go into right field.

When compared to my LF hits in past seasons, this new swing comes at the cost of some power. However, being able to hit the ball into CF instead of LF is helpful because teams typically don’t cover CF as well as they do LF, especially shallow CF.

(According to Russell, this swing can lead to elbow issues. The swing is causing my left elbow to be straight. To prevent issues while swinging, elbows should be bent slightly.)

Towards the end of the season, I have noticed that I am consistently driving the ball with my left arm and hitting it into CF, even without thinking about my swing. Driving the ball into LF now requires thought, which was never the case for me until recently.

Andy Wolan is a reporter and photographer for Verdasys Softball. This story was not subject to the approval of the league or its clubs.