The big "grudge match" against the other development team from last year turned out not to be too bad. They were a better side than us - they'd been playing all last summer, while we only started in August, and they had recruited some experienced players over the Winter. They're comfortably mid-table at the moment. But it wasn't too bad a result. Their second-string pitcher walked a lot of our batters (I had four at bats, and took a walk every time), and we were, at least for the first couple of innings, in contention. Some great pitching from Julian, and good performances from our infield, kept the pressure on them, and we made, by our standards, a decent total of runs. Eventually, their big hitters started to pull the score away from us, and an eighteen run final inning led to that one-sided scoreline. But that was after a full game, without "mercy" being called.
I fielded at right outfield, and made one run. Very satisfying running in and feeling my boot contact the plate just an instant before I was tagged, then hearing the umpire shout "safe at Home!".
Many of the Strays were actually quite friendly. Unlike the footballers who started a game in our outfield, and took against the polite but clear warnings that they weren't allowed there, and that the pitch was booked for softball. Some of the Strays were a little hostile to the footballers, things grew somewhat heated, and in the end the umpire had a quiet word with our captains to suggest that we try not to antagonise them. Even though they were in the wrong, getting two dozen testosterone-fuelled teenagers angry at us might not have been wise. Though admittedly, we did have bats...
Talking of batting, a bonus Wolf Point must surely go to Paul, for hitting a big foul ball which came close to beaning the Devil Strays' macho "God's gift to Short Stop".