Utah Adult Baseball League, 32+ Sunday Division
Utah Rockies 9, Utah Pirates 8 (14 innings)
Submitted by Mike Moore, Rockies manager
First and foremost, this season wouldn’t have been possible without all the hard work by our commissioner Gary Bowman. The amount of time he spent to get the league up and keep it running was unbelievable. Gary or his wife Melissa were at every game and had all the players fill out a form stating they had none of the Covid symptoms and they took our temperature to verify. We all use baseball as an avenue to get away from all of our typical life difficulties. At a time like now Baseball was needed more than ever and Gary knocked it out of the park.
What an amazing season our division had. The playoffs couldn’t be seeded until the last two games were played. Those two games ended in walk-off fashion. This propelled the most competitive playoffs that I can remember. All six games were decided by one run.
Our Rockies were the #1 seed in the double elimination tournament. We won all three of our games in walk-off fashion. The second round was versus the Utah Pirates, our cross-town rival on Friday. Both pitchers went 11 innings in a seesaw game. We scored in the bottom of the 11th on a throwing error. The Pirates played on Monday in the loser’s bracket and walked it off in 10 innings. The championship game was a battle to remember and was played that Wednesday night.
The Pirates pitcher Jeff Cole, who threw Friday’s game, had the start and went 13 innings. They scored three in the top of the first and we eventually tied it up in the bottom of the sixth inning. We had many opportunities to score with three guys being thrown out at home. They scored the go ahead run in the eighth but in the bottom of the ninth we tied the score on two hits.
In the top of 11th, they scored two and then in the bottom we tied it up yet again. After the 13th inning at 10:55 pm we had to postpone the game, as the county rules don’t allow the lights on after 11:00 pm. So, we were slated to continue Friday evening before the ‘if necessary’ game.
The Pirates came out hot with a leadoff single, the next guy popped out and then Jeff Cole had a clutch double to take a one run lead. Christian Mickelsen led off for us with a single. The next guy walked, then we had a sacrifice bunt that was perfectly placed for a single. They followed with a wild pitch that barely scooted away from the catcher but Mickelsen scored. The next guy struck out. An intentional walk was issued to create a double play opportunity, however there was another wild pitch and we were able to walk-off the win.
We have had many battles with the Pirates in Championship games over the years. I’m sure this one will definitely add fire to our rivalry.