by, 09-12-2009 at 09:35 PM (1004 Views)
The Whitecap's season is over, and I am in my annual state of mourning the end of the season. It is a serious condition I call BBGDS (baseball game deficiency syndrome). Right now it is a mild case because the Tigers are still playing and looking good to win the Central, but in another month or so, the symptoms will increase.
The Whitecaps faced the Great Lakes Loons in the first round. They played the first game in Midland and the last two at home. The Dodgers wanted to give Midland a good year, so they stocked the team with prospects. I knew coming into the series that this would be a really tough series, but found out their one weakness was the ability to hit left handed pitching, so the goal was to give them a steady diet of left handed pitchers.
On Wednesday night in Midland, left-handed Casey Crosby, who had not seen live game action since mid-August, was lifted from the DL to start the first game. He was humming along beautifully in the first inning, but his finger started giving him problems again. Casey struggled after the first inning, but that first inning showed the pitcher he will be when his finger adjusts to the new pitch. Brandon Douglas came through with two of the three hits on the evening for the Caps, and put us on the board with his 2 RBI hit in the ninth inning. It was not enough though and the Whitecaps lost 7-2
On Thursday night at home, lefty Adam Wilk started the game. They gave him a little bit of a leeway on his strict pitch count, and Adam (already an excellent pitcher) had his best outing of the season. he went 5.2 innings, giving up just 2 hits and struck out 8 (no walks and no runs).
Rob Waite came on in relief for the last 3.1 innings and gave up just 2 hits, no walks and had 1 strikeout.
Meanwhile the bats woke up and Billy Nowlin went 4-4 with 3 RBI and came in on a run.
Ronnie Bourquin went 1-2 with two walks and a run.
Whitecaps ended up winning 7-0.
Friday night, Luke Putkonen took the mound and Dee Gordon of the Loons started off the game with an inside the park home run. Luke pitched an excellent game, going 6 innings, giving up 6 hits, two walks and striking out 6. He gave up two runs (one earned).
In spite of a 2-5 night for Brent Wyatt,
Billy Nowlin getting hit by a pitch for the 21st time (Brent Wyatt with 24), and the Whitecaps tying the game in the seventh inning, it was not enough to win the game. In the bottom of the ninth, Jordan Lennerton laid down a beautiful sac bunt to put runners on second and third with only one out.
It was about this time that I found myself surrounded by Whitecaps pitchers who were charting in the stands. They were prepared to run out on the field to celebrate winning the first round, but the Caps just could not get the winning run home. The Loons hit a lead off home run in the top of the 10, followed by three strike outs by Tyler Stohr, and the Whitecaps could not recover.
It was a tough ending. So close but not to be.
It was fun seeing some former Whitecaps around the ballpark over the two home games to cheer the team on. Mark Sorensen was there both nights. There was an appearance by Rudy Darrow and Duane Below on Thursday night.
I knew Rudy was coming, and with Mark and Duane both being Michigan residents, they didn't surprise me too much, but I was totally surprised to see my buddy from 2007 on hand, Gorkys Hernandez
So, another season has come to a close. I came away with a couple signed baseballs, a bat given to me by Brandon Douglas, and thousands of pictures and even more wonderful memories. May April please come quickly.