Tuesday, June 26—The Renegades returned home to snap a two-game losing streak with a come-from-behind 4-2 victory over the Brooklyn Cyclones that wasn’t pretty but, as I told several folks afterward, “I’ll take it.” The teams are now tied 6-3 for the McNamara Division lead.
The Gades’ road trip to New York City began with a 10-1 victory over the Staten Island Yankees Saturday but the Baby Bombers returned the beating Sunday, 9-1. The Gades went to Brooklyn Monday but mustered little offense and were shut out by the Cyclones, 3-0.
Brooklyn, cheered on as usual by many fans who made the trip north, was ahead 2-1 after three innings. But the tide slowly turned as the Renegades bullpen one-hit the visitors for the final five innings and Hudson Valley pushed three runs across the plate in the seventh on a lone hit, two errors, a wild pitch and a sacrifice fly. Pretty? No. Does it look good in the win column? Absolutely! Please click here to read the game story on the Gades’ Web site.
I arrived at the stadium in time to savor some Rain Forest Nut coffee from the Gulf Express on Route 9 in Philipstown and wash down some tortilla chips I had in my car. As I was preparing to head for the gate I heard excited horn blowing from a newly arrived car. It was Tom Peters, president of the Fan Club, with two kids in tow. I hadn’t seen Tom previously this season, so I told him I had dropped off my membership renewal at the Customer Service Booth.
Inside the stadium I found veteran fan Elaine DiGregorio in her wheelchair’s familiar spot on the Hudson Valley side of the concourse. Elaine was as chipper as ever and said she was feeling great.
I was pleased to see that a new “Canning” sticker, green (to match the seat) with white letters and border, had been affixed to the back of Seat 7, replacing the one that had fallen off.
Bill Richmond, his second Nikon in hand, joined me in the empty Interstate Battery seats at the start of the game and stayed for several innings. During a visit to the mound by Renegades Pitching Coach Kyle Snyder I learned from Bill that Kyle was a member of the 2007 world champion Boston Red Sox. As I have said many times, I can always have a good baseball conversation with Bill and usually learn something in the process.
The unusual interplay of sunlight, clouds, stadium lights and nightfall made for an intriguing sight beyond the right field wall for a couple of innings. The setting sun singled out the trees, making them visually pop out between the dark clouds above them and the less intensely illuminated billboards below.
The Chicken Dance blared briefly from the stadium sound system during a lull in the Renegades seventh–one of my favorite entertainments at The Dutch, primarily because it’s one of the few dances I can do more or less properly despite my lack of coordination. My son Dave would always pretend to be embarrassed any time I went into action. The reaction of Big Steve tonight went to the other extreme: “This is what it’s all about!” he shouted with a big smile.
Flush with the joy of victory, I headed for the parking lot, joining Bob Hand, Paul, Bev and Bob, left fielder Marty Gantt (who hit the ball solidly tonight but always within reach of Brooklyn fielders) and several other Renegades fans. As good sports we waved to the Brooklyn team bus as it left the clubhouse area. The gathering eventually dwindled to Bob, Paul and me, the pretzels from my car and some leftover hamburgers, hot dogs and several forms of chicken. (I really need to be more moderate, no matter how good the food tastes.) We divvied up the leftover leftovers when it was time to go, not neglecting Paul’s dog, Renegade.
My departure was delayed a couple of minutes while I watched—from a safe distance—a fox or coyote (most likely a fox; it was small and awfully scrawny) scamper past my car. Much-needed repaving of Route 9 in Philipstown delayed traffic a bit on the way home but I arrived safe and sound around 12:30 a.m.
Next home game: Thursday, June 28, vs. Staten Island Yankees, first pitch 7:05 p.m.