Friday, October 18, 2019

Local softball heading into post-season play

High side!

by Than Acuff

As you read this, I’m swallowing copious amounts of the Colorado River while floating/swimming down the Grand Canyon, only to probably return to town and enjoy a case of giardia, so I apologize to the softball world for missing the first round of the playoffs.

But I had to float the “Grand,” as they call it. I mean, it was created on like the fifth day and it took the good Lord a blink of his eye to create one of the grandest chasms in the world. It’s not like it happened over millions of years—that would be crazy, actually, inconceivable. I mean, a river cutting through rock? Insane! Blasphemy!

Besides, with the world being flat and all, the Colorado River would have just split the world in half eventually and there would be two worlds. Like two alternate realities. Like quantum theory stuff where one thing happening here is also happening somewhere else at the very same time.

Does that mean there are two Trumps?

Two Joe Piscopos?

Two Freddie Pateks?

Two Lakshmi Singhs?

Two lovely Kathy Sabines talking about upslope activity causing me some massive orographic lift?


You know what there are definitely two of? There are two softball leagues and both are entering the post-season and that can mean only one thing (or two if you believe in an alternate reality): Post-season predictions!

The Brew Crew of Kochevar’s flat-out dominated the regular season, rolling to a perfect 14-0 season while breaking the 300-run mark and, barring any players leaving town for trips in August, they should continue to roll through the post-season.

Should, but might not, because there are two other teams that have the capacity to knock them off: Pita’s Meatsticks and Psycho Rocks. As for the rest of the league, it would take a Herculean effort for any one of those teams to take down the Brew Crew, but stranger things have happened.

Miracle on Ice anyone? No, not Nancy Kerrigan, though she was a big-toothed angel who stole the hearts of America in her day.

N.C. State taking down Phi Slama Jama?

The U.S. taking down England in the 1950 World Cup?

So we’re really looking at who can take down the other two teams in the running, Pita’s Meatsticks or Psycho Rocks, to get a shot at the Brew Crew. I’m looking at you, Avalanche, KBUT, Bonez or even the Eldo.

The Wednesday league, while smaller, is more of a crapshoot. Not only that, it’s single elimination so if a team has one bad night, or one bad inning, their season is over.

Pita’s OGs are the odds-on favorite but with players from both Pita’s teams playing in both playoffs, fatigue could be a factor. I guess. Not so much physical fatigue because we’re talking softball here. Rather, perhaps mental fatigue? Wait, we’re still talking about softball so rule that out. How about psychological fatigue, or maybe an epidemic of the August crud?

At any rate, both the Talk of the Town and the Rent-A-Gades could pull it off as well, leaving the Staff Infections and the Last Steep in dust. But I’ve seen the Staff Infections play at full strength and they cannot be counted out, despite their record. Dig a little deeper into the stats and one will notice they are second in the league in runs scored, so there’s that.

Truly, the one reality, no matter how many realities there are, is the playoffs are an entirely different ball game and it’s impossible to truly predict with 100 percent accuracy.

So, here it goes…

Brew Crew cruises to the semis, loses and falls to the loser’s bracket, whoops up on some middle-of-the-pack team that is rallying through the post-season, and returns to the finals pissed off to take the title. Will Mixon, Shawn Harrington and Slank then touch upon the softball season on their podcast, The Garage Street Journal.

Staff Infections knocks off one of the three potential Wednesday title teams in the first round, with Bob Gillie driving in the winning run with a bloop single to shallow right field. Unfortunately, they meet Pita’s OGs in the semis, get decimated and then Pita’s OGs rolls to the Wednesday league title. Drew Stichter finishes the season playing in close to 30 games of softball and close to 200 innings, only to be outdone by Dave McGuire, who matches Stichter in games played and innings played but gets extra points for coaching little league baseball as well.

See you when I get back. I’ll be the guy running back and forth from the bathroom during playoff coverage as I battle through giardia.

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