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The Purulence Spreads....

My softball team, Purulent Sputum, played again last night.  I was concerned we might not have enough players, but we ended up having 6 women and 8-9 men -- too many people, really.  The other team had enough players, 8, but in the wrong proportion, 5 women and 3 men.  We decided to play them anyway instead of forcing the forfeit.  (Teams in our league have to have an equal ratio of men and women play the field, and men and women alternate in the batting order.)

We started off with a bang, scoring 9 runs in the first inning.  We actually scored enough by the fifth inning to enforce the mercy rule (12 run lead) had the other team not picked up an unearned run in the bottom of the frame.  We ended up winning 16-5.

Our pitcher put on a show again.  All 5 runs were unearned.  Four of them came in the third inning, when I decided to stick myself at third base.  The first two batters hit routine grounders to third, but I failed to make good throws to first each time.  I immediately pulled myself from the game after the second error, but the damage had been done, as four runs crossed the plate.  They also snuck a run in after the first baseman dropped a throw from third on a routine grounder in the bottom of the fifth.  But since we already had 16 runs at that point, it was academic.

Our bats continued to come alive.  Everyone was making solid contact or drawing walks.  We hit three homeruns as a team, including a grand slam after I told the team we needed to score 4 runs to invoke the mercy rule.

Of course, I was a goat on the offensive side of things, too.  After smacking a sharp single to centerfield and advancing to second on the next batter's single, I decided I would try to be cute.  I rounded second and took a lead towards third, trying to sucker a throw to the second baseman.  The fielder wouldn't commit so I cheated even further towards third.  Finally, when it looked like she was committing to second, I broke for third...but she's the one who suckered me!  She never made the throw, but instead tried to run me down.  When I was within a couple of steps of third, she tossed the ball to the third baseman, who was waiting to apply the tag.  I tried to dive under the tag, but instead ended up barrelling into this frail, skinny woman.  She dropped the ball, naturally, but I was called out anyway for failing to slide.  Had I not tried to be cute, I would have scored on the next batter.

We had a lot of fun, and the team is playing solid ball now.  Our record is evened up at 2-2.  And we have yet to lose legitimately, in my opinion.  We forfeited our first game, and I filed a protest on our second game because the umps misinterpreted two rules that lead to the decisive runs.  (We lost the protest, for what it's worth, but the coordinator acknowledged that she had to rewrite one of the rules for this to happen.)  But if we keep playing like this, we'll have a good shot at the playoffs.

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