The grey sky threatened rain most of the day, and perhaps trusting the evidence at their fingertips, most of the Popular Science squad elected to remain ensconced indoors. As a consequence, Thursday afternoon’s softball game became more of an intramural effort, with three members of Popular Science joined by a whopping six Bullets and one good Samaritan who happened to be present at the field. The Bullets still fielded a full ten-person squad.
Despite both teams’ line-ups being from the DC roster, the Popular Science team continued a trend of early inning offensive onslaughts against the Bullets’ pitching. The Bullets’ own Adam Staffaroni highlighted Popular Science’s first inning with a two-RBI triple. One of the Science’s own players slammed a two-run homer in the second, and the Bullets quickly found themselves in an eight-run hole after two innings, trailing 8-0.
In the third inning, however, Popular Science’s fill-in starting pitcher, one Dan DiDio, began to tire. Perhaps it was the jetlag from his trip to Bristol. Perhaps it was those achy old limbs. Whatever the cause, the Bullets surged back with a three-run home run from Joel Press and two-run jack from Adam Schlagman. DiDio helped his cause, getting back one run for Popular Science when he notched an RBI single in the fifth after the Bullets’ third baseman (who may have been the author of this post, but he did go 3-3 with 2 runs at the plate, so there!) threw a possible inning-ending groundball into right field to extend the frame.
Going to the bottom of the fifth, with time of the Bullets’ field permit dwindling, the Bullets trailed 9-8. The bottom of the fifth opened with back-to-back-to-back singles, loading the bases with no outs and bringing up the top of the Bullets’ order. Lead-off hitter Schlagman’s fly ball to deep left field allowed runners to tag up from both second and third bases, tying the game and leaving the winning run only feet away. Left fielder Vince Letterio decided that Schlagman’s strategy worked once, and so he followed with a fly to deep left field. The throw home was late, and the Bullets rallied for their first win of 2009.
Final score: DC Bullets 10, Popular Science 9. DC Bullets record 1-1 (0-0 in league play).