NLA Baseball - Flyers win in extra innings
The Therwil Flyers season continued last Sunday with a short trip through the hills to their local rivals, the Sissach Frogs. Through their strong commitment to excellence and winning, the Flyers managed to come away with two wins on the day even though the first baseball game was rained out. As always, all advanced metrics are provided by Swiss-Statscast.
The first game of the day was a scoreless affair through three innings before the dark clouds that had been massing over the beautiful Swiss hills finally decided they had had enough and proceeded to dump large amounts of water over everything. Both teams bravely tried to stay dry and wait out the rain before a dry spell got everyone's hopes up. However it was not to be, as another wave of water washed over the field, leading to the cancellation of Game 1. A 2nd rain delay followed, with the Frogs initiating a friendly game of tic-tac-toe between the dugouts. In a sign of things to come, the Flyers fell behind early, before storming back to claim the win. With the skies finally clearing, the victorious Flyers warmed up for some baseball.
Box score Tic-Tac-Toe: Flyers win with three-in-a-row.
Under a now cloudless sky, Frogs lefty Clinton Perez toed the rubber to get things started. The Flyers countered with Aussie Chris Horne, making his 2nd start of the year. While Perez made quick work of the Flyers in the first two innings, Horne ran into some early trouble. A couple of walks and singles in the first inning gave the Frogs a quick 2-0 lead. They would also add another run in the 2nd as Perez contributed a solo home run as well, to give himself a 3-0 lead. However the Flyers offense never stays quiet for long. In the 3rd, Stefan Koller and Sebastian Zwyer reached base to lead off the inning. Adrian Kaufmann followed with a mammoth 200-foot double over the short right-field fence to plate the Flyers first run of the day. Three batters later, clean-up hitter Sven Leemann smacked a laser to center field that scored two runs and tied the game. With the Flyers back in the game, the Frogs reacted by bringing in Taylor Eichhorst to pitch. Eichhorst and Horne both threw up zeroes until the 5th, when Perez once again found a pitch he could handle and hit his 2nd home run of the day, this one a two-run shot to put his team up 5-3. Just like in tic-tac-toe, the Flyers would have to claw their way back if they wanted to win. Horne did his part by not allowing another run before he left after the 7th, giving his offense time to come back. The Flyers did just that, with Koller leading off the 7th with a walk and coming around to score on an RBI single by Taka Oshima to cut the deficit to one. Koller would also take over mound duties from Horne in the 8th. The Flyers were still down by one in the 8th, when catcher Jeremy Schreiber came to bat. He came through by absolutely crushing a ball 405 feet to center to tie up the game again. The score would stay this way through the 9th inning, leading to the Flyers first extra-inning game of the young season. In the 10th, the Flyers bats woke up in a big way. Doubles by Javier Rodriguez and Taka Oshima combined with a pair of singles by Horne and Hide Oshima to plate 4 runs for the Flyers and give them some breathing room for the bottom of the inning. With one out and a man on first, shortstop Taka Oshima ended things with a beautiful sliding catch in left field and caught the runner off of 1st for a double play. We caught up with him after the game: "My outfielders were playing deep, so as soon as the ball was hit over my third baseman's head, I knew I had to go get it. Then again, anything hit in the air to the left side is mine anyway. After I made the sliding catch, I turned around and saw the runner had taken a few too many steps off of first base. A few steps is all I need to throw you out though. I gunned the ball to first base, but my brother decided he wanted the assist for himself. He let the ball hit the ground and the runner go towards 2nd, where our Aussie finished off the game with a tag. Oh well, an Oshi-Oshi-around to Horne double play is also a fun way to end the game."
The Flyers' season continues on Saturday, May 20th at home against the Lucerne Eagles.