The man pictured above is what all the buzz is about tonight in Hagerstown, Maryland. This man was selected in the first round, 7th overall by the Miami Marlins. This man has an astounding ERA of .495 coming into tonight. He has already accumulated 21 strikeouts in 3 games. After tonight that average will likely go up and his “K Count” will improve to 29 strikeouts in four games. He is a graduate of Oklahoma State. He is a phenomenal addition to the Hoppers, especially around playoff time. This man is Andrew Heaney. Heaney threw for 7 innings and had 8 strikeouts tonight versus the Hagerstown Suns.
Tonight started game 1 of the Greensboro Grasshoppers return to greatness, by not only making the playoffs 2 years in a row for the first time ever, but it also is the hope and dream that we can repeat as champions. Tonight our boys looked like they could do just that! They looked like the team destined to do just that. Like I’ve said many times this year, THERE JUST IS NO QUIT IN OUR BOYS! That being said I’ll jump right into the action. Aaron “Senne in the city” went an unbelievable 3 for 3 on the night and coming across home plate for a run. The only other player to cross the plate (2) tonight, was Brent Keys, the current batting leader for the SAL LEAGUE. Brent Keys batting average is .334 on the season. Pitchers tonight as I mentioned Heaney was starter on the mound tonight he saw 28 batters and had 8 strikeouts. The Hoppers won tonight against Hagerstown by the score of 3-1. They will return to Greensboro, NC for the last two games in this best of three series. If the Hoppers win Friday they will play either the Rome Braves or the Asheville Tourist for the Championship. As always be sure to check out Bill Hass’ Bill On Baseball and click here for full recap and box score from tonights game. IN THE PLAYOFFS… THIS IS JORDAN STOWE, AND IT’S A GREAT TIME TO BE A HOPPER!
(Note: Don’t forget you can click on all players teams above to be linked to their stat pages and websites. This way you can keep up with your favorite players and teams throughout the playoffs!)
This was the scene outside the gates tonight. To those of you that know about this, I would like to know your thoughts, please comment below. To those that do not know, the Babe statue was stolen last July. For the full article, found at greensborosports.com click here. Tonight, the man that stole the statue was court ordered to stand outside the ballpark with a sign publicly apologizing for stealing the beloved mascot and statue. To some, it proved its point. To others, it was a joke. Comment below and let me know your thoughts.
Besides the media spectacle that was outside the gates, there was also a ballgame. A ballgame that would consist of a home run smash by James Wooster, lots of pitching errors (their’s and ours), and a huge rally in the eighth to eventually win the game for the Grasshoppers. The Hoppers would be down 6-2 in the bottom of the sixth inning. To those that have been paying attention during this series, it seemed like the same story, different night. However, the Hoppers had another ending in mind for tonight. In a fairytale movie like fashion, In the bottom of the eighth, Wilfredo would single out to right field. Ryan McIntyre would then be walked, advancing Wilfredo to second. Then, Ryan Reiger would single to load the bases! Matt Smith would be intentionally walked, forcing a run to score! STILL NO OUTS, Brent Keys would get a strikeout. Austin Barnes would send a sacrifice fly out to the outfield, as Ryan McIntyre scores. For those not keeping track, the score was now 6-4. Only need two runs to tie. Those two runs would come in next as John Shultz would send a double out to right field bringing in the tying two runs. The man of the night was none other than JOSH ADAMS! Josh Adams would step up to the plate, with two strikes and two outs, he would double again bringing John Shultz home. For a rally finish of 9-6. Hoppers prevent the series sweep as they pull the cord on the West Virginia Power.
Starting on the mound tonight was Charlie Lowell. He threw 5 innings, allowed 7 hits, 5 runs, and 1 home run. With no strikeouts. Brad Mincey would come in and relieve him throwing 2 innings, allowing 3 hits and 1 run. He would sit down as Kevin Cravey would come to the plate to close the night. Kevin would throw the final 2 innings, allowing no hits and the lonely strikeout of the night.
With the Hoppers victory tonight, they improve to 15-19. The Hoppers are also 5 games behind first place. Be sure to click for the full recap and box score. Also, don’t forget to comment below about the man that stole the Babe statue. Was it a good idea or bad idea? What are your thoughts? All picture taken from tonight can be found here on the HoppersFan page on Facebook!
And as always, IT’S A GREAT TIME TO BE A HOPPER!
Tonight was very fan friendly. There was a corn hole tournament up on Natty’s Hill, there was the between inning games that are always a blast, and post game we had The Band Of Oz performing in the grandstand. It was an incredible day at the ballpark. A friend of mine and me signed up for the corn hole tournament, but I guess everyone was scared of our mad skills because no one else signed up. We still played anyway. And having a good time with a good friend with baseball in the background is definitely a recipe for fun!
Miss Babe RuthThe above picture is a pretty common scene At the ballpark. is a black lab and has been trained to retrieve bats and balls for the players. The game was exciting to watch as well. I took a ton of pictures today and you can view all pictures on the HoppersFan page on Facebook.
So, on to the game…
Kannapolis would strike first in the first inning making it 1-0. The very next inning the Hoppers would score on a solo HOME RUN by Matt Smith. Tying the ballgame at 1-1. Neither team would score again till the 5th inning when Kannapolis would have 3 players cross the plate for a score of 4-1. But as we all know by now, our Hoppers may be down but they are never out! The hoppers would answer with two more runs in the 6th. Making the score 4-3. Kannapolis nor greensboro would score till the bottom of the ninth. Matt Smith would score the tying run on a single by Rand Smith. And like so many games this year, the heart attack hoppers went to extras. It remained 4-4 through the bottom of the 11th.
Here’s the scene: Hoppers tied 4-4. Bottom of the 11th. Matt Smith would single, putting him at first. James Wooster hit a sacrifice bunt advancing Smith to second. Terrence Dayleg would ground out, advancing Smith to 3rd. up walks Wilfredo Gimenez. For those that know me, know that Wilfredo at the beginning of the season, was not one of one my favorite players by far. But he has come a LONG way, and I must say I’m a fan. But, back to today’s game… Wilfredo walks up, 2 outs, Matt Smith on Third. Wilfredo steps up and blast a single just barely over the first baseman’s glove! Matt Smith Scores!!!! HOPPERS WIN! HOPPERS WIN! HOPPERS WIN!
The team rushing the field in celebration!
The theme tonight was Halloween night. Being that it was Friday the 13th and the stadium is located right off Elm Street it had all the makings for a cheesy horror flick. And in some ways it was rather cheesy. You could catch pirates, clowns, pimps, and even waldo (If you could find him…) walking around and taking in the game. The names on the scoreboard were even put to a cool halloween background .
Looks like Spaz found Waldo!
Austin Brice was the starting pitcher on the mound tonight. He would throw 5 scoreless innings, allowing 2 hits and 5 strikeouts. He would be relieved by Kevin Cravey who pitched one inning and allowed 1 hit. Daniel Oliver would then come in to pitch 2 innings, allowing 3 hits and 2 strikeouts. Next up would walk Greg Nappo who would throw 1 inning and three straight strikeouts for a combined total of 10 strikeouts. That’s a lot of K’s on the board for Don Moore and his crew at the “JETS PIZZA K ZONE”.
The game was tied at zero until the bottom of the fourth inning when an inning full of errors happened. The Hoppers would come in to score 6 runs that inning. Batters to cross the plate were Aaron Senne, Ryan Reiger, James Wooster, Tony Caldwell, Austin Nola, and Terrence Dayleg.
With all the costumes and scary figures around tonight I guess Friday the 13th was just too scary for Hagerstown. Hagerstown would never lead in this one. Hoppers take the win easily 7-2. With tonights win the Hoppers move to 8-14 in the second half and only 6 games back! The Hoppers are back in action tomorrow night facing the Kannapolis Intimidators. And as always… IT’S A GREAT TIME TO BE A HOPPER!!
(Note: All players names are linked to their MILB profile so you can keep up with all your favorite Hoppers!)
Remember, you can click on any of the pictures in the post to embiggen them. Check out the photo album on Facebook for all the pictures. Join the conversation by leaving a comment — what are you thinking?
Wow… Where to start? Todays day game was truly incredible. Our boys keep finding the will to win! I was at home today, as some of you know, today was my wife’s birthday. We spent most the day celebrating and since she is not a fan of baseball, the game was not on our agenda today. However, as I know you know, I had my phone close by and ears open because, I on the other hand, can’t be too far from my hoppers.
When I first checked it out it was 3-0 Kannapolis leading in the top of the fourth. I was very shaken by this because the Hoppers are on a 14 home game winning streak. But they don’t get the name Heart Attack Hoppers for nothing. I was quickly put to ease when Brent Keys crossed the plate in the bottom of the 4th. However it was still 3-1 at this point, Greensboro trailing. In the fifth inning Kannopolis would score again, making it 4-1. But, all is well, because in the 6th inning Greensboro would score 5 runs. I was updating on my phone, and it seemed like that inning lasted forever! Definitely missed being at the ballpark today. But, back to baseball. Matt Smith sent another one toward the sun and over the fence on a three run homer. Those five hoppers players to cross the plate that inning were Austin Barnes, Brent Keys, Ryan Reiger, Josh Adams, Matt Smith. Kannapolis scored a couple more runs the next two innings and the Hoppers had one a piece for the next inning. Kannapolis scored twice in the top of the 9th putting them up, 9-8. I had chiseled my nails down to the bone I was so nervous. But the hoppers never disappoint. In the Bottom of the 9th, Ryan Goetz scores off a line drive Single, tying it up. EXTRA INNINGS! Both teams remain scoreless in the 10th. The intimidators remained scoreless in the 11th. The Grasshoppers saw their chance to end it then, and end it they did! Ryan Reiger shot one over the fence for a two run homer to win the game! HOPPERS WIN AGAIN!!! With that win the Hoppers advance to 28-10 on the season and 14 games straight won at home. Hoppers remain 6 games ahead of 2nd place.
It is fans like you, and like myself, that make Greensboro Baseball what it’s all about. Rain or shine, in the stands or not, I bleed Green and Orange. And it is with that statement that I proudly exclaim… ITS A GREAT TIME TO BE A HOPPER!
By the way, I will be at the game tomorrow night with camera. So look out for some great pictures!
Thanks for the great write-up, Jordan. I was able to catch most of the game on the radio, and it was indeed a case of the Heart Attack Hoppers showing up again. For the official report, check out the box score and game recap. And be sure to also keep an eye on the Bill on Baseball blog for more great Hoppers commentary, including some behind-the-scenes insight from the manager and players on this most recent ugly win.