Contrasting fortunes clashed at wet, cold and windy Corcaigh Park on Saturday 6th June. The feisty Belfast Northstars came to Dublin looking for their first win of the 2009 season while the Dublin Hurricanes were looking to remain unbeaten for the year. The weather conditions would be the story of the day. The rain started just prior to the first pitch and didn't let up to the final out.
One thing you always get with the Northstars is 100% effort, and Saturday was no different as the Belfast team made light of the horrible conditions to give the Hurricanes one of their toughest games of the young season.
Although the Northstars have never been one of the top teams in Irish baseball they have always made it hard for the opposition. 2009 is no different as the Stars have run both the Spartans and Mariners close this season.
The 'Canes scraped a run in the first, two in the third and a final run in the fourth inning to build a four-nothing lead against 'Stars veteran pitcher Gordon Cuthbert. Gordon is no doubt amongst the leaders in innings pitched all-time in the Irish League, something we would be sure about if the league kept statistics! Pitching in wet, windy conditions Cuthbert threw a very strong game keeping the powerful 'Canes lineup off balance all day.
For the 'Canes, as usual for '09 it was all about the defence. Considering the weather you would have understood if the 'Canes had made a few mistakes, instead the defence was absolutely perfect.
Play of the day came in the top of the fifth inning.
The Northstars had runners on first and third with two outs, the rain pouring down and the 'Canes clinging to a 4-0 lead. A big hit could have made things very tight. Instead skipper Steve Divito made a play on a ground ball flipping it to second baseman Eric 'Vegas' Valkys, who threw a bullet to first, spinning the beautiful inning-ending double play.
This not only preserved the shut-out but also ended the ball game, both teams agreeing with the umpire that five innings of baseball was all we were going to get in on the rain soaked day in question.
The win pushes the Hurricanes to 5-0 for the 2009 season. Next up, the Blacksox. They come to Corcaigh Park for an 11am showdown against the league leading 'Canes. Should be a good one.
Previous games from 2009 Irish baseball season
- May 30th Hurricanes 5 Spartans 4
- May 2nd Hurricanes 12 Spartans 3
- April 27th Hurricanes 9 Blacksox 3
- April 18th Hurricanes 3 Blacksox 0
- The full 2009 Irish baseball league schedule is listed here
- 2009 Irish baseball league schedule
- A one on one with Irish league coordinator Brendan Scott
- Play baseball in Ireland for the Dublin Hurricanes
- Directions to the O'Malley fields at Corcaigh Park
- The Dublin Hurricanes on wikipedia
- Understated Dodger legends (Peter O'Malley and the fields @ Corcaigh park)
If you would like to get involved with Baseball Ireland at any level, Adult or Youth, or would like to support the game in Ireland, please refer to this link