OTTAWA (ODB) — One good thing about the frigid temperatures is that it meant the Gargs weren’t the worst thing to endure Sunday night at Hampton Yards.
A season-high crowd of 22 — almost all of the attendees encouraging the Cards to a well-deserved 15-4 victory — braved nasty winds and an Octoberish nip in the air to watch the Ottawa Avnet Gargoyles lose their sixth straight.
“There’s a lot of blame to go around,” said one Garg over a lager, following the game. “We’re not fielding. We’re not hitting. We’re not winning.”
It’s a simple game, Hall of Famer Thomas Hanks once said. “Throw the ball. Catch the ball. Hit the ball.”
Maybe someone should organize a League of Their Own DVD pyjama party so these Gargs can see how to better play this game.
The Cards exploded into the driver’s seat right from the getgo, scoring five runs in the first and six more in the second. They hit four homers off Todd Duckworth (L, 0-3), who admittedly was not on his game. “It’s like, when you feel like you’ve played one season too long,” he quipped, when asked to describe his performance.
It was not Todd-like, to be sure. But it’s a little simplistic to put the goat horns on one guy. Somebody please order a full set of goat horns. Surely the Gargs qualify for a discount by now, after such a gloomy start to the 2009 campaign.
“We knew this was going to be a rebuilding year,” said manager Zach Schowalter. “But I never expected to still be searching for the first win, in June.”
Who could have a predicted that after six games — half of which they have lost in mercy-rulings — the Gargs would sport a .257 team batting average and that they would have scored a total of 23 runs? Um, that’s an average of fewer than four runs per game.
Sure, the Gargs were again without their big bat as Bruce Turcotte continued to nurse a sore shoulder following a dive in centre field in a May 20 game against Ollsons. Yes, Matthew Stephenson was out of the lineup and on the beach, somewhere in cottage country. And yes, Théo and Mathieu Gauthier were healthy scratches owing to personal reasons.
Still, you would figure the Gargs could muster more than five hits against a C Division club, oui? Main, non.
Kevin Emmerson’s two-run double in the third provided half the Gargs’s runs in the inning and on the night and when Glen McGregor, running for Mark Brennae (catcher’s rule) chugged all the way around to make a beauty of a slide, suddenly it was an 11-4 ball game.
Game on, oui? Main non.
Duckworth shut the Cards down in the bottom of the inning but the Gargs went feebly into the night from there and were unable to push a runner into scoring position from that point forward.
“It’s a test,” offered one Garg over beers following the game. “We’ve got to make sure we keep it together,” he added. By that, the veteran Man in Black meant that now is not the time to turn on one another. The Gargs have every reason to be in testy mood but they would be wise to direct that angst toward the opposition. Better yet, perhaps it’s time the Gargs had some fun, relaxed and played for the moment. After all, despite the devious weather, it’s still only June.
Gargs Largs: You know you’re the manager of an 0-6 club when the first baseman of the opposing team is offering advice. “Maybe you guys should hold a practice,” Zach was offered while he stood on first. Come to think of it . . . Todd made a nice play in the fourth to cut down a runner at third following another dandy throw into the infield from Rick in left . . . Karl Bélanger drilled a pitch deep to left that had the distance but, hey, he works for Jack, so it went a little left of the third base foul pole. . . It may have been the coldest weather for a Gargs regular season game in years. When the first pitch was thrown, the temperature read 6 C. Thankfully the sun had returned from the clouds, which made it seem like a balmy 10 C . . . A couple of Gargs and their Gargirls were in Toronto over the weekend to see a Jays game and what is this we hear? One of them actually went to see Riverdance? That’s OK. It’s not like he missed a ball game to see the show, right? . . . “Where else can you see 200 supermodels dancing in bikinis?” offered Ken Wong, regarding the aforementioned performing arts extravaganza . . . Quote of the night. Well, it’s a tie. Here’s your tidy troika: “Every woman should be bisexual.” “Let’s see some beaver.” “I used to live in Vaseline Towers.” The names of those responsible have been omitted to protect the innocent . . . The Gargs take on the Acadiens tonight (7 p.m., Hampton Yards). Emmerson (0-2) will start for the Men in Black, although there is a chance Zach may go with Wong
on the hill.
Serge Leclerc 0-3, run
Glen McGregor 1-3
Zach Schowalter 0-2, run
Ken Wong 0-3, run
Mark Brennae 0-2, run
Kevin Emmerson 2-2, 2B, 2RBI
Karl Bélanger 1-2
Brian McGregor 0-2
Rick Devereux 0-2
Todd Duckworth 1-2,
Gargs 0 0 4 0 0 4 5 3
Cards 5 6 0 4 x 15 12 3
Todd (L, 0-3) 4IP 15 runs (12 earned) 12H 2BB 0K