Jan’s Pitch Game and 2017 Championship

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Game 1: Clamdiggers 15 Rockinghams 13

In Game 1 the Clamdiggers lead the entire game tallying runs early and holding Portsmouth’s bats at bay. Trailing by 6 in the bottom of the eighth Portsmouth’s bats came alive and tallied 7 runs to take the lead going into the top of the 9th. The Clamdiggers rallied for 3 runs of their own to take the lead as Portsmouth came to bat in the bottom of the ninth. Portsmouth’s first two runners reached base and with no outs, runners on first and second, a towering fly ball was hit over the head of Clamdigger left fielder Patty “Boom Boom” Wadland. He tracked down the fly on one hop (first out of inning), threw the ball with all his might to shortstop Dan “Minute Man” Kent who then relayed a perfect strike to catcher John “Specs” Curley who tagged out the runner trying to score from second (second out of inning). The double play was one of the most exciting defensive plays we’ve seen in years. With a runner on third, the next Portsmouth striker hit a line drive in the right field gap and took a diving catch by Drew “Captain Clam” Murphy to record the third out.

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Playoff Game 2: The Lynn Live Oaks faced the Lowell Base Ball Nine.  Lynn’s bats helped them to jump out to an early 9-0 lead by the end of the second inning.  Lowell fought their way back through out the next 6 innings with Lynn only tallying one more run making the score 10-8.  Lowell had a few mighty strikes, but Derek “Whiskers” Boutwell and Mark “PB&J” Scapicchio were able to save the Live Oaks in the 9th inning and not allow Lowell to tally any runs.  Lynn held on to the victory and moved ahead to the Championship to face the Newburyport Clamdiggers.

Championship Game:  The Newburyport Clamdiggers won the opening toss and elected to strike first.  Lynn however were the ones that were able to jump out to an early lead tallying 6 runs in the first three innings with Newburyport only tallying 2.  Lynn attempted to, but failed to keep the mighty Newburyport strikers down for long though with the Clamdiggers taking an 11-9 lead going in to the bottom of the 8th inning.  Lynn replied with 2 tallys of their own in the 8th to tie the game 11-11 going into the 9th.  Lynn’s defense held Newburyport scoreless in the 9th, but were unable to capitalize on having runners on 2nd and 3rd with no outs.  Newburyport’s defense held Lynn to no tally’s and the game moved into the 10th inning.  The Clamdiggers scored one run in the top of the 10th to take a 12-11 lead.  Lynn would not be denied though quickly moving runners to 2nd and 3rd base again with no outs.  A hit tallied a run for Lynn and moved the winning run to third. A slow roller to the pitcher was not enough to score the winning run as a brilliant play at the plate caused Lynn’s second out.  A passed ball of the catcher however allowed the game winning run to score and give Lynn their first ever Essex Base Ball Championship.  It was a long awaited victory for the Live Oaks who had waited a long time to add their name to the Championship Jug.

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With the day being about the Jan’s Pitch Charity Event and the playoffs/championship there was a lot going on at the Spencer Pierce Little Farm.  A great display of base ball was witnessed by all of the cranks that were able to come out and money was raised for a great cause.  We would like to thank everyone who was able to make it out and enjoy some of the best base ball that the Essex League could provide.  We thank all who helped us raise well over $3,000 for cancer research and inner city art programs.

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