Minneapolis Millers

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Game Info

2011 Roy Hobbs World Series

Game 1 Sunday, 10/23 vs. the Chicago Knights PDC 1 1:45pm 8-4 Win

Game Recap:   This game played out perfectly for us.  Rudy started on the hill and gave us three great innings.  Kent gave us five more and Joe finished it off with a 1-2-3 9th.  Everyone contibuted, Ohs threw out a runner stealing in a crucial situation, Vandy had 3 hits, Carrell crushed 2 doubles, Rudy, Stef, Gatzke & Paulson all had two hits with a bunch of combined RBIs and 9 of the 10 batters had at least 1 hit.

Game 2 Monday, 10/24 vs. the Fort Myers Mets Terry Park Stadium 6:00pm 14-2 Win (8 Innings)

Game Recap:  Mike Fier took the hill for us and just cruised through 5 innings striking out 5 and not allowing a run.  The bats continued to pound the ball with Berf, Vandy and Ohs all getting 3 hits while Paulson went 2-2 with a triple.  Paulson also came in and pitched thee good innings for the save.  Our old friend and teammate, John Schaller, and another Twin Cities guy were playing with the Mets.  John was even nice enough to buy all of our beer at The Rack & Tail after the game.  Thanks, John!

Game 3 Tuesday, 10/25 vs. RusStar City of Palms Stadium 10:00am 5-2 Win

Game Recap:  This turned out to be the best competition we've seen so far this year.  Bill "Spaceman" Lee and his son, Mike, were playing for a much improved Russian team.  All but three guys were actually Russian and they played very good defense and hit the ball a pretty well.  We got in trouble right off the bat in the top of the first as the leadoff hitter got a hit then Doug Ohs tried to force that runner on a slow roller only to have the ball hit the runner so instead of a DP they had two on with no one out.  The next batter bunted and Vandy threw the ball a little into the runner at first who collided with Eicher.  The ball got away, allowing the runner to score as Eicher grabbed his arm, dropped his gloved and staggered off the field.  It appeared as if his shoulder was separated but then went back into place.  Luckily, after a couple of innings on the bench, Eicher was back out at first base and only had a slightly sore shoulder.  They drove in one more run that inning on a sac fly but then we shut them down and settled into a pitcher's duel.

Scott Gatzke knocked in Dan Steffen in the bottom of the second to start the scoring for the Millers.  We kept getting runners on base but couldn't seem to get any runs across the plate.  Early in the game Mike Carrell crushed a ball to left field only to be disheartened when the leftfielder made a terrific catch at the wall after making about two complete revolutions trying to find the ball.  In the 6th he walked and eventually scored on a single by Berf to tie the game.  The big blow, however, came in the 8th when we loaded the bases off of a reliever before he gave way to Bill Lee.  Stef came up to the plate and cracked a triple over the rightfielder's head to give us a nice cushion before MC shut them down in the 9th.  MC pitched all 9 innings giving up 0 earned runs and striking out 6.  After the game Stef asked Bill Lee for an autograph and bill said, "Aren't you the one that hit the ball?"  When Stef confirmed that he was, indeed, the guy that won the game Bill said, "That's a little tacky, don't you think?"  Bill relented and signed a ball "Bill Lee -Earth 2011."

Game 4 Tuesday, 10/25 vs. the Kent Mudhens PDC 2  1:45pm 17-5 Win (7 Innings)

Game Recap:  This was a blowout from the start.  The poor guy on the mound didn't look like much of a pitcher and everyone was giving him "helpful" suggestions that were probably mostly contradictory.  He walked a bunch of guys and gave up a lot of hits as we scored 9 runs in the top of the first while sending 15 batters to the plate.  Just about everyone had at least one hit or an RBI in this game and we just cruised.  MC had 4 hits, Paulson, Eicher, Vandy, Berf & Vern all had two hits with Eicher and Vern each having 2 doubles.  Joe, Vern & Stef combined to pitch the 7 innings and complete the easy win.

Game 5 Thursday, 10/27 vs. the Kenmore Orioles PDC 4 1:45pm 10-4 Win

Game Recap:  Rudy really pitched a gem in this game.  He started by giving up hits to three of the first four batters and two runs in the first inning but then he settled down and cruised through the rest of the game.  Kenmore had dropped out of the AAAA/AAA bracket after going 1-3 up there and they didn't seem to have much pitching available.  We took advantage of that and scored in each of the first five innings.  Mac was a little frustrated and anxious in his first game down here but he played solid at catcher and went 1-4 at the plate and had a great time.  He was a little light headed after scoring from first on a Berf double but otherwise fit right in.  Berf continued his torrid hitting going 3-5 with two more doubles, Vern and Doug Ohs each had two hits and just about everyone in the game had a hit.  MC was frustrated one more time after hitting a bomb to the fence only to see the left fielder catch the ball Willie Mays style with his back to the infield.  Asked about it after the game at Pott's he simply shook his head and said, "I don't want to talk about it".  We talked about just about everything else, however and enjoyed a nice win to go 5-0.

Game 6 Friday, 10/28 vs. the Tennessee Dirtbags LC 5 1:45pm 6-3 Loss

Game Recap:  Rain was moving into the area so we were asked to get to the park ASAP to start this game.  We actually started it at about 1:20 and it was raining lightly even as we began though it eventually stopped.  Mike Fier was on the hill and got out of the first inning with only a single hit.  We loaded the bases with no one out in the bottom of the first and the pitcher for Tennessee seemed to be imploding.  He was overthrowing his fastball, he was screaming his dissatisfaction and even spiked the ball hard into the ground.  I really thought he was only going to make a couple of innings, but I was wrong.  He settled down and got Mac to ground into a fielder's choice at home and then struck out Berf and Eicher to get out of the inning with no damage.  That was really the turning point in the game.  They scored one run in the second and we went meekly through the next four innings only getting one baserunner.  They scored three in the fourth and two more in the fifth when Fierlo threw errantly to first on a bunt allowing the batter to get all the way to third base.  We got one back in each the sixth and seventh and then loaded the bases again in the ninth but we only managed to push one run across when they pitched around Carrell with the bases loaded but the Vandy popped up to third in foul territory to end the game and our tournament.

It was really a disheartening game.  We came in 5-0, didn't hit much and lost one game and we're out of the tournament.  Fierlo pitched pretty well but a couple of balls got over Vern and MC who were both only running at about 60%.  If we could have tracked those down and had Fierlo not thrown away the bunt, things would have been much different.  Also, if we had pushed even one run across in the first that would have changed the game dramatically.  I've come to believe that we don't have many guys that can put a pitcher's pitch into play very well.  We have a lot of guys that can crush a mistake over the plate but can't wait on a tough slider and doink to right field because they're trying to rip it to left.  We really seem to have trouble hitting late in the week down here.  We kill the ball early in the week but then struggle late.  I don't think the pitching gets that much better, though it does improve.  Are guys just tired, are they nervous should I do something different to shake things up late in the week?  I can't believe that this group can't just roll towards a championship in this tournament.  We're too good to get bounced out this easily.