Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Greatest Moment in Dublin Hurricanes history; number seven: Vegas Valkys goes yard - Croydon 2005

The Dublin Hurricanes are one of Ireland's oldest, fun-lovingest and most successfull baseball clubs. They have won every award going in Irish baseball, they are the only Irish club side to have traveled several times to European Club competitions and their players have scooped many of the individual awards available to players in the Irish baseball league. In short, it has been a good twelve year run. The team’s core has largely remained the same, which makes the accomplishments and memories all the sweeter to those involved.


Cutting straight to the chase, over the next few days we will be revealing the Top Ten Dublin Hurricanes Baseball Club moments of all time (all time being 1997 – 2008). Hopefully you will join us for the ride, and while we look back at the memories, you the reader will get a good sense of what it means to play baseball for an Irish baseball club.

Straight to the list. Number seven.

The Greatest Moment in Dublin Hurricanes history; Vegas Valkys goes yard - Croydon 2005

The seventh best moment in Hurricanes history occurred in London, baby. The Hurricanes travelled to the Croydon Pirates invitational tournament in the summer of 2005. On a quiet Sunday morning against a team from France, Eric 'Vegas' Valkys made history by becoming the oldest Hurricane ever to go yard, at the sprightly age of 38.

The following excerpt from a report on the Hurricanes participation at Croydon in 2005 describes Eric's home run in detail;

''Cometh the hour cometh the man. Late in the game with one out and the bases empty up stepped Eric 'Vegas' Valkys, our 140lb second baseman. I gave Eric the bunt sign, the French third baseman way back at third. He fouled it off. Eric worked the count full before launching a 3-2 fastball to right field. It kept going, all the way back and finally just over the temporary fence in left field and just over the clumsy leap of the French left fielder.

Home run.

The French argued briefly, and the three umpires got together. I ambled over to listen in. Pretty simple conversation;
'Home run?'
Umpire two: 'Yes'
Umpire three 'Yes'

Vegas was already in our dugout when the home plate umpire signalled 'home run' again to confirm.

We clung to the 4-2 lead and scraped out a vital win. The sun was beating down at this stage, so we all piled back into the vans headed back to the hotel to kill time out of the sun while waiting for game two. Everyone except Chris, who seemed determined to die from exposure over the weekend.''


The Greatest Moment in Dublin Hurricanes history

7. Vegas Valkys goes yard - Croydon 2005
8. Andy Martin's sensational, silver slugger 2004 season
9. The legend of Spencer Grace
10. Gordon Ireland's final at bat as a Hurricane


Baseball Ireland links

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Irish National baseball team

Irish National baseball team
Team Ireland at the European Championships, Croatia, 2000.

A nice little mention for this blog on Fox Sports

A nice little mention for this blog on Fox Sports

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