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Bovina Bats Too Much for Star-Powered Fleischmanns

As Bovina Valley slept, a heavy dew settled the night before the contest. But for the captain, the day awakes to the clatter of duties, correspondence, and organization.


Uniforms. Gear. Water! Who’s got the buggy? Loading. Stretching. Texting. Battle formations. Doubt. Stop that! Sharp kitchen noises. Something to eat! The night before still clawing. Questions. Answers? No time to look back. Annoyance. Suppress that! Look up to see a long corridor, and at the end, a heavy curtain. The stage lights force their way through the cracks. Smile, the show awaits.


Arriving at the field, the field of vision narrows, and the clatter melts into the background. To the east, the sun rose warm into the eyes—but not yet hot. As the rays crept across the diamond, new patches of wet grass simmered, sending writhing spires of evaporation into the air, to be swirled and swaddled like some mysterious eastern fantasy. A lone figure walked into the battlefield, mesmerized by the aura of hot springs unfurling from center field—immersed in the day’s canvas like an aspiring Jackson Pollack. The captain melted to his knees and from this new vantage point, the heat waves coming off the field made the Creamery—just to the south—dance with frenetic energy. The metal roof jumping like so many heated electrons, or an old television filled with static. Strangely comforting, the figure softened. Taking his hands off the earth, he rubbed them together, and the way the fresh-cut balled together and lost its moisture and eventually became sticky pleased him. He opened his eyes. The sun still rose in the east. He smiled. The show awaited and the players began to filter in.

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Filing into Bovina’s Creamery Field was a member of baseball royalty: Alexia Jorge, a member of the USA Women’s Baseball Team, to pitch for the Mountain Athletic Club. Reminiscent of days long gone, Ms. Jorge came in as a professional. Harkening to the 1900s, when Julius Fleischmanns would pay major leaguers to play on his Mountain Athletic Club, the Dairymen were not sure what to expect—but they knew she brought the star power.


The game began auspiciously for the modern-day MAC, as they plated two runs in the top of the first on an error that sent Dairymen fixture Ben “the Gamer” Denison to the ground. Denison (4-6, Sac Fly) would recover with an RBI single in the bottom of the frame. With the help of a Luke “Burns-Eye” Burns (3-6, 2 2B, K) double and a John “Chico” Finn (4-7, 3B) single, the Dairymen plated three of their own. It would be all Dairymen from there.


Bovina sent 11 batters to the plate in the second, and 12 in the third, scoring seven in each frame and chasing the MAC starting pitcher. Leadoff hitter Dylan “Hobbes” Tucker would post an absolutely ridiculous line—reaching base in all seven of his plate appearances and scoring six runs, Hobbes finished the day 5-5 with two doubles and two walks. A tip of the cap, sir. The Dairymen offense never let up, and the home squad tallied at least one run in every inning except the fifth.


The Dairymen also did it with defense—as the MAC attempted to mount a rally in the middle innings, right fielder Justin “Juice” Betterley dashed towards first base on what seemed a sure fool’s errand. Screaming “I got it” from the jump, all in the crowd prepared for the scrappy MAC to claw their way one run closer. But out of nowhere, Juice appeared! His eyes locked! His gait in perfect time! He had a chance! At last, his sinewy fingers closed around the now-dirty orb and he tumbled knees-first into the turf—and for a moment, his spectacles just hung there, suspended in midair, the sun glinting off the refracted glass. And out of the tumble, Juice took one hand from his vice grip and snatched the glasses from their pendulous state. The rally quenched, Juice calmly returned the rims to his face, unmolested. Juice also added two hits to the Bovina efforts on the day, breaking a two-game slump. Three cheers, sir.


Rounding out the Dairymen efforts were Dan “Nickname Pending” Kehrer (2-5, BB); Ben “Diesel” Cairns (2-5, BB; 1IP, 1ER); Jack “Shucks” Stanton (2-6, 2B); catcher Brenden “Rulebook” Cairns (0-6, ROE); Nick “Roughcut” Frandsen (3-6, 2B); and Gary “Burns-Eye, Sr.” (0-1).


Game notes: The final score was 27-7 in favor of the home-side Dairymen, vaulting Bovina ahead 3-2 in the season series between the two teams. The Dairymen now stand at 2-0 at their home Creamery Field. Ben “Diesel” Cairns pitched to his brother, catcher Brenden Cairns, in this ninth. “Chico” Finn continued his hot streak and now has 11 hits in his last four games. Next game is in Fleischmanns against the Westfield Wheelmen on 9/19 at 3pm.


Yours,

Nick Frandsen

Captain, Bovina Dairymen


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