Monday, September 14, 2015

Skitz Down, Not Out, Must Win

The Biscuits fell to the Lookouts at home on Sunday. Montgomery must now win Monday night to force a game five on Tuesday.
For long time fans it brought back bad memories of the 2012 playoff sweep. Yet, unlike that team, these Biscuits have shown more resilience than any other group to wear the butter and blue.

Some asked if I was worried, I am not.
Win, Lose or Draw it won't change the fact that this is the best Biscuits team we have seen. Ever.

These Biscuits refuse to quit, score late, have fine pitching both starting and relief and play excellent defense. There are two great catchers, an array of impressive bats scoring runs in bunches and have coaches who know how to handle the team.

The Biscuits have posted back to back wins 20 times this summer. They believe in themselves even when others don't.

Which in my book is just what makes them the best team we have seen fielded in Montgomery for a very long time.

So, no, I am not worried.
A very close play exemplifies the series

And if they do fail to advance in the playoffs, it won't diminish their greatness. Simply a shame that we didn't get to fully prove what we are capable of, what we have seen all season long.

Yet I am not ready to say they are done, this is not a group that will roll over and give away their chance at a ring.
2007 Biscuits Championship Ring (not a replica)

The Sunday game had a playoff feel, but was odd in some ways.

Big Mo threw out the first pitch.
No dignitaries, no former players, no league representatives or city officials. Just Big Mo.
The crowd was respectable, announced at over 2100. If team officials were worried about attendance, fans let them know that Montgomery supports a winner.

Austin Pruitt was on the hill, his Texas squint and playoff beard in full effect. He took the Loss but pitched well, striking out six in six innings.

Seven hits and four runs were charged against him, Austin gave up an early two run homer and spent the rest of the game trying to hold the line and give his offense a chance to support him.

Touched again for another pair of runs in the third, Pruitt gave a fine effort in 93 pitches.

The home team offense was one big swing from Cameron Seitzer, whose three run blast kept Montgomery from being shut out.

Three Biscuit errors in a game is an aberration, but the gaffes proved costly. Usually steady at 3b, Leonard's errant throw was notable, as was a catchers interference call.

Querecuto was charged with a fumble on a botched grounder, while it was a tough hop in traffic around a baserunner its also a play that had to be made. The three unearned runs resulting from these miscues were the difference in the game.

Chris Kirsch did indeed pitch out of the bullpen, tossing one very effective inning. He turned switch hitter Polanco around to the right side and neutralized the lefty Kepler.

Ryne Stanek and Parker Markel also pitched in relief, both were victims of unearned runs brought on by the aforementioned errors.

In game four, the Magic 8 Ball has the best guess.

What we will look for is Taylor Guerrieri on the hill. He was held out of games a little longer than normal, this start is the reason. Learning to pitch big games is just what the Rays look for in their #1 draft pick.

Look for tournament style management from Brady Williams. Meaning look for the Biscuits to unload the bullpen after Guerrieri departs and pinch run/pinch hit more freely than in the regular season.

Look for Brady Williams to bark at the umpires if they seem to be slacking or missing calls. A floating strike zone is tough enough in July, the fiery skipper won't let the officials cut any corners on his guys in such big games.

Look for Biscuit hits, the Skitz have not failed to get on base even in their losses this year.

Look for Sappington, Garton, Lollis to be the first guys out of the pen.

Jeff Ames may be a candidate for the closers role right now. The blistered thumb from a week ago is no longer an issue.


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