It was quite a weekend for 19th century base ball along the east coast this past week. The Lewes BBC played its first game ever against what will be its instate rival the Diamond State BBC of Delaware.
May 2, 2011 – Diamond State BBC traveled to southern Delaware on Saturday to face off against the new Lewes BBC in what was the Sussex nine’s first match ever. The Lewes club proved to be fine hosts and demonstrated an ample amount of ginger for first-time challengers. The match, played under cloudy skies, took place at the Virden Center ball field on the University of Delaware’s Lewes Campus.
The Blue and Black put up 4 aces in both the first and second frames, matched by the Lewes club’s two scores. Not to be daunted, Lewes charged back with 3 aces in the third inning and held the Diamond States scoreless to make the score a close 8-5 after three innings. The more experienced Delaware nine put the game away in the latter innings with 5 aces in the 4th, 9 more in the 5th, and 4 more in the final 4 innings, while holding the Lewes nine to a single score. The final tally showed Diamond State’s 25 aces to Lewes’ 6.
This was an encouraging start to what is hoped will be a long-standing Delaware base ball rivalry. The two clubs hope to meet later in season to determine Delaware’s base ball champion.
There were several players with noteworthy performances for the Diamond State nine. In his first game, rookie Andy ‘Lightning’ Lynch was a gaudy 4-5 at the plate, tallying 2 triples and 4 aces. Greg ‘Memphis’ Boulden also scored 4 aces in a 4-6 performance, while also pitching 3 scoreless innings to finish the match with a save. Captain Garrett ‘Steady’ Perdick and Ken ‘Buzzsaw’ Bonsall both collected 3 aces, while going 4-6 with a double each. Jake ‘Snake’ Bockman mashed 2 doubles and tallied 2 aces in a 4-6 effort. Doug ‘One Finger’ Brown returned to form going 4-5 with 2 aces. Earl ‘Stones’ Benningfield and starting pitcher Dan ‘Mini’ Minutola each logged 3 hits in 6 appearances, gathering 2 and 3 aces respectively. Frank ‘Mr. B’ Brevoort, II also tallied 2 aces while going 3-5 at the bat.
After playing their first 3 matches on the road, Diamond State returns to the friendly confines of Fort DuPont State Park in Delaware City for their May 15 home opener against the Mechanicsburg Nine of Pennsylvania. Pre-game festivities begin at 12:30 p.m. with the match scheduled for a 1:00 p.m. start time.
TALBOT AND ELKTON SPLIT
On a beautiful Sunday afternoon in Elkton at the Terrapin Station Winery, 256 people including the Phillie Phanatic witnessed one of the best matches of 19th century base ball played around these parts in a long time. In a game that took over 2 hours and 45 minutes to complete, it was so entertaining, that both clubs and fans wanted to see more so both clubs obliged by taking a tie game in to 11 innings before a victor was found. The entire game was close as each side would go up before the other would tie it. Elkton found itself ahead after 8 frames 13-12. Talbot came back though in the bottom of the 9th scoring an ace and threatening to win the game in the 9th, but left a runner on 3rd with the third hand dead. After a scoreless 10th, the Eclipse scored 2 runs and looked like they had nailed down the victory. Talbot though pushed ahead two runsin the bottom of the 11th and then loaded the bases with just 1 hand dead. A deep fly ball to center ended the contest with a win by the visiting club. In the second game, the Eclipse jumped out to an early lead and never looked back and knocked the wind out of the sails of the Fair Plays and won the nightcap 14-4.
Also playing at the Terrapin Station Winery at Elkton was the Flemington Neshanock and the Potomac Nine from Washington. The travelers from the south were no match from the New Jersey club in either match as Flemington brought a fine group of ballists. The final scores were 21-7 and 24-9 as Flemington took both games.