Baseball Playoffs – Game 1

It’s playoff time, and Alan’s ascent on the diamond this summer led him to being named the Marlins lead-off hitter for this year’s playoff run!

At Saturday’s practice, Alan got the attention of his manager, Coach Mark, by clocking the fastest time of anyone on the team from home to first base (3.42 seconds).  Even so, we were still surprised to learn two hours before tonight’s game, via a text to coaches, that Alan would be featured atop the lineup and playing center field.

Alan responded by going 2-for-3 with a double, run scored, and a career-high 3 RBIs.  Despite Alan’s big game, the Marlins dropped  a closer-than-the-score-appears 31-12 decision to the top ranked Cardinals.  The Marlins led 3-2 after 1 inning, were tied after 2 innings, and were only down 12-8 after 3 innings.  But then the flood gates opened in the 4th and 5th innings for the Cardinals.

After grounding out to 1st base to start the game, Alan settled in during his next plate appearance in the 2nd inning.  He came through with a clutch 2-out, seeing-eye single into left field that plated 2 runs and pulled the Marlins within a run at 6-5.  Coach Mark congratulated Alan from the mound, calling him the fastest player on the team after the big hit.

In the 4th inning, Alan hit yet another RBI double and would later come around to score to help keep the Marlins in the game.

In the field, Alan and the other outfielders were busy tracking down deep hits by the Cardinals.  Alan was positioned in center field in the first place due to use his speed to chase down the balls hit by the Cardinals’ murderers row, including Noah.

The playoff tournament is a double-elimination tournament, so the Marlins remain alive and will play the Mariners tomorrow with the season on the line.

Notes:

-Alan & De’Onta and Noah — the All-Stars from Mrs. Harris’ class — exchanged playful grimaces with each other throughout the game.

-Alan spent the afternoon getting ready for the game at the Highland Heights pool.  It might need to be part of his pregame routine.

-Alan got the news about leading off while at the pool.  He was nervous about hitting first, but had been telling me most of the summer that he was ready to hit near the top of the order.

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