Cats workin’ their way up the Standings, close in on Guelph
It seems that the Ottawa Fat Cats have become men on a mission. They downed the Guelph Royals in Doubleheader action yesterday afternoon. However, it wasn’t easy.
The team that the Cats are now 2 and a half games behind, gave them a fight in both games of this doubleheader in front of a bustling crowd of 2,419. The Cats won the first game by a score of 6-5, but Ottawa did have a 4-0 lead early in this game, that they managed to blow.
In the opening innings of this contest, hardly anybody got on base. Danny Desclouds started the game for Ottawa, and pitched quite well in the first 4 Innings, not allowing a single run to score. Chris Nagorski–Royals’ Starter–was equally as good, if not better. Until the Middle of the Ottawa batting order in the third, nobody got on base for the Fat Cats. That mid-game slump was broken, when Dan Baribeau cracked one out to give Ottawa their 1st base hit of the ball game. Barbeau got to third base, but Ottawa newcomer Junior Leduc got put out, to end the inning before Dan could grab anything out of his jacket pocket.
I was thinking that it was now or never, going into the 4th for Ottawa. That little spark of offense from Dan Baribeau one inning earlier helped Ottawa regain some confidence at the plate, and after Jon Dale struckout, Cody Mombourquette stepped in, brewed up a little Mombo Magic (he should trademark that), and double to second base. Nagorski hit the next batter with a pitch, and just like that the 4th was open for business.
Mombo, Marsh, Farago and Barclay scored. After the 4th, it was 4-0. However, Ottawa’s run didn’t last, and the Fat Cats were thrown back into reality after Danny Desclouds gave up a few hits, including an RBI to Frankie Hare, and it was 4-1 after the 5th.
Guelph had the Fat Cats right where they wanted them, and came out in the 6th like a pack of Angry Wolves. Frankie Hare, John Waltenbury, Chris Stewart and Brad Cochraine led the offense and the Royals to a 4 run inning and a 5-4 lead. Ottawa was now desperate.
After Junior Leduc took one for the team and Sacked out to the infield, a wild throw by Nagorski to try to get Junior out at 1st, let Chris Latimer lead in the tieing run, and Mark Charrette lead in the winner. It was a little something I like to call: “A Minor-League Walkoff”.
In Game 2, the Royals were now determined to not let this possible win, and their lead on the Fat Cats in the Standings slip away. They came out swinging with a whole bunch of Offense in the 1st. 2 runs scored on 2 hits and a little bit of crafty base-running from resident hot-shot, Frankie Hare.
But the Cats were game.
Of course, I believe that Ryan Hart (1-4) wasn’t at his stongest–or maybe he was.. looking at his ERA–as a few walks led to him being pulled in the 3rd. Nevertheless, Mombo doubled again, which put him back in the race for the league lead in Batting Average. Jon Dale and Joe Stone also scored in that Inning, and the Cats led 3-2 after 1.
This trend continued, as whatever the Royals threw at the Fat Cats, Ottawa could out-match them. More hits, less errors, more runs and better pitching than the royals, usually spells W-I-N. It did on Canada Day for Ottawa, as they cruised to a DH Sweep, winning Game 2, 9-7. It’s too bad that the Queen didn’t stop by to soak in a bit of Canada’s favorite pastime.
Ottawa’s game has come on at the right time. They will now face the Slumping Brantford Red Sox, tommorow night, and a win at home against one of the league’s best teams would do wonders for Ottawa. If they win, and the Royals lose, I’d be shaking in my boots if I were Frankie Hare and Guelph.