A “Ring-Worthy” HUMDINGER !!!

May26/ 2013

A “great game” was played in Durham this weekend….. that no one will remember…… Because an even Greater game was played 24 hours later.   Mike Fox’s moochies won a come-back thrilla over Clemson on Friday night.   THEN ….. Saturday night / Sunday morning forty-some college athletes and coaches took part in a pent ultimate epic sports event that, for six+ hours, was everything sports and ACCBaseba“college sports” is supposed to be…… rarely is.    I watched every freakin’ pitch.  I hope you did too ‘cause it truly was A HUMDINGER ……

Hey Swofford!   Order “rings” (and a parade) for every player and coach that was a part of last night’s game at the DBAP   Get Bojangles or Lowes to pay for’em.

Will more fans claim to have “been there” than claim they were on-site for Gio’s punt return or “8 points down with 17 seconds to play” or “when Skywalker fell from the sky”?  Doubtful.  This was college baseball and baseball fans are “different”.

A record 11,392 were “officially” there plus at least one Internet Legend transfixed in his home theater.  A lot of those fans were still there at 1:45 AM Sunday morning when the 108th out was recorded after 18 innings and “it belonged to the ages”.

The scoreboard at Durham Bulls Athletic Park at 1:45 AM read Carolina -2 / NC State -1 and that will be all that matters to some.   I hope you aren’t “some”.   College sports and baseball won last night.

After playing 32 innings of nail-biting baseball over 28 hours, UNC gets to play at least nine more on Sunday afternoon versus VaTech for the 2013 ACC Baseball Championship.   Regardless, both UNC and NCState will be playing next week in the first round Regionals on The Road To Omaha.  Both schools may have other “humdingers” awaiting them in the next three-four weeks.

All that was “on the line” Saturday night was braggin’ rights….. and every kid that suited up Saturday night deserves to tell his grandkids about “that time we played 18 innings in DBAP against our bitterest rivals”.

If Carolina and State meet again this season it will be in Omaha.   Carolina won “the rubber match” 2-1 and the season series 2-1.   The baseball gods rained out that 3rd game in Raleigh last month to add the extra drama to last night’s epic.

Soooo many back stories and subplots to “last night”.   I was almost there but turned down “two behind home plate” to watch on my flat-screen.  I WAS there Thursday with CokeDaddy when UNC walloped Miami 10-0 invoking “the 10-run mercy rule”.   I watched ALMOST every inning of Humdinger #1 versus Clemson on Friday.

With Clemson up 7-2 in the 9th, I switched over for the final seconds of Pacers v Heat….. luckily “nothing happened” (!!!!!) EXCEPT an unbelievable Carolina comeback to tie the game and send it into 14 innings.  Another good reason to NOT watch the NBA.

With Tigers threatening to score in almost every extra inning, Mike’s moochies scratched and clawed and held on to blow it up in the 14th.   It was already Saturday and Fox’s war-weary moochies had less than 24 hours to prepare for CARLOS RODON.

The only historical analogy to facing CARLOS RODON would be Saul’s Israelites in the Valley of Elah facing the Philistines and their mighty champion – Goliath.   But Goliath could not throw 95 mph heat and a nasty “cutter” like CARLOS RODON can.

After only two seasons, CARLOS RODON is already a legend in ACC baseball.  From nearby Holly Springs, sophomore CARLOS RODON is the “leader of the Pack’s 2011 Greatest Recruiting Class EVER”.   The best Wake County “phenom” since “Josh”.  He truly is “the real deal” ….. “Carlos Franchise”.  He sets new NCSU and ACC records with every pitch…. and he will be back next year.

UNC alum Matt Harvey is being touted as “The Best Pitcher in MLB” this season for the Mets.  CARLOS RODON is arguably “The Best Pitcher in College Baseball”.  For ten innings Saturday night he certainly showed why.

Facing a UNC line-up of seven .300+ hitters, CARLOS RODON sawed off bats, baffled and blew away the Moochie Murderer’s Row allowing but one hit over 10 innings.   The moochies “small balled” their way to match State’s one run and set the stage for “the second nine innings” as a blended stadium of rival partisans realized they were part of something “special”.    Lets talk about that “blended stadium”.

Unlike a Carter-Finley, Kenan, PNC or Dean’s Dome, seats for the ACC Baseball Tournament are not allocated in partisan blocks.  This was a neutral site midway ‘tween both campuses.   The 11,392 were all mixed together.   Red and CBlue shared box seats, grandstand and bleachers side-by-side….. and this was a different species of partisan fans.

The camera panned the stands for six hours and I did not see one jack-ass of either persuasion.  Not a one.   Emotions in the stands mirrored the actions on the field but every fan fit a generous description as “seemed kinda normal”.  As it was that day in Mudville….. “hope sprange eternal” within 11,392 human breasts for 6+ hours at The DBAP.

FWIW…. I did NOT see Holden Thorp or J-Moe at the game.

As Saturday morphed into Sunday, there were numerous kiddos who fell victim to Morpheus and curled into Mamma’s lap but they can always say “yes, I was there that night”.

Maybe Durham’s notorious gangbangas had popped caps on any/all board monkey jack-asses ??   I don’t know.  I was just overjoyed not to see those human hairballs pissin’ in this sports punchbowl.  Both fanbases have’em as we always note…. but “they” were not on display Saturday night….. just 11,392 plus me and others on the other side of our flat screens watching “one helluva baseball game”.

What else I didn’t see (and remember I watched every pitch for 6+ hours!) – Not one tattooed player (though I suspect there are a few unseens) and NOT ONE “Hey, Look At Me” preening peacock player strutting and popping a jersey.  Not one taunt.   Not one cheapshot.   Not one snarly in-your-face gangsta poser.  Thank you Lord and buy me some peanuts and crackerjacks…...

What about those “rally caps”?   I LOVED’em in both dugouts.

EVERY SINGLE KID that played in this game was “a Moochie” and that’s as high a compliment as I can offer.

One big advantage of watching on the HD flat screen is the close-up of “their eyes” and their faces and their body language.   These were 40 or so interchangeable “kids playin’ baseball”.   Flip the red and blue unis and they were the same…… “kids playin’ baseball”.    I credit Elliot Avent and Mike Fox for that.   Sa-Lute !

I have no clue what their SAT scores were.   Are they all Engineering majors or pre-Med?  I doubt it.   They are 40 kids going to college and still dreaming of someday “being in the Big Show”.   Both programs (UNC and NCState) are now at the highest level where dreaming such dreams is not silly at all.

Will any of these kids who were competing early Sunday morning be the next Buster Posey or David Freaze or Bryce Harper or Mike Trout?   Maybe.   But whatever their futures hold in baseball or in life…… I betcha they remember last night…… because:

It Was A Humdinger!

Did Ya Know….. Jack Norworth who wrote “Take Me Out To The BallGame” in 1908 also wrote Shine On Harvest Moon?

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