Pre-Game Meal – ‘Ship Edition: Game 3 (9/13/12)

by: Evan Valenti (@EvanValenti)

So it all comes down to this. This will be the last game of the season, regardless of what happens. The New York-Penn League playoffs have been fantastic all the way around. It’s a shame that someone has to walk out of Dutchess Stadium a loser, but that’s why they play the game. Both teams have fought hard all season long (it’s why they are here), and I do not expect anything else in game three.

Tidbits from today:

1.) Hitting Coach Mark Bailey was talking to a lot of the players about his experience as the Houston Astros’ bullpen coach in 2005. The Astros made the World Series in 2005, but it was not easy. After the memorable Chris Burke home run in the bottom of the 18th inning against the Atlanta Braves, the ‘Stros took on the St. Louis Cardinals in the NLCS. Most of you will remember that series for the towering home run Albert Pujols hit off of Brad Lidge in game two. Bailey talked about how dejected the plane ride to St. Louis was after that game. Everyone was down. But they remained calm and rattled off three wins in the next four games to get to the World Series. The motto for today: Stay calm, have fun.

2.) Besides being an outstanding hitter, Preston Tucker also knows how to play the guitar. He has been playing an axe since eighth grade. Favorite type of guitar? Ibanez. He owns a few of them.

3.) Aaron West last night was sensational. He was perfect through five innings, kept the fastball down and got a lot of swing and misses on the slider. It was arguably his best start of the season, which is extremely impressive considering how much he has pitched this year college and pro-ball combined.

4.) For all of the Yankee fans that read this blog, the ValleyCats fans in attendance will be doing the “roll call” when the ‘Cats first take the field. For those that do not know what I am talking about, the fans are going to chant every single fielder’s name until they are acknowledged by that particular player. Click here to see what I am talking about.

Batting practice hero: Jean Batista. Really swung the bat well. He hit a couple of monster home runs and a ton of screaming line drives.

Tonight’s Lineup:

Sclafani – SS

Elkins – 2B

Wierzbicki – 1B

Cokinos – DH

Heineman – C

Tucker – RF

McKinney – LF

King – CF

Johnson – 3B

SP – Joe Bircher (LHP)



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