2001-07-21 / Sports

Kidz Playhouse Wins Boys Minor League Championship By Jim O'Connor

Kidz Playhouse Wins Boys Minor League Championship By Jim O'Connor

Game one...Saturday, July 7

The Kidz did it again! Snatching a 4-3 bottom of the sixth inning win from the jaws of a gritty K of C team. Remember these names because you'll be hearing about these two pitchers for a long time to come. Danny Munday (K of C) 5 hits, 5 walks and 14 K's. Tommy McElhattan (Kidz) 5 hits, 3 walks and 9 K's.

As in their first match-up earlier in the regular season, Tommy and Danny matched each other pitch for pitch. The K of C drew first blood in the third inning with one run and followed up with another in the forth making the score 2-0.

Designated hitter Pat Kelly of the Kidz led off the bottom of the forth with a walk setting the plate for catcher Kenny Fiorentino who launched a double over the left fielders head to score Pat. Three straight walks allowed Kenny to score making it 2-2. The walks didn't deter Danny Munday who dug in and struck out the next three Kidz. The K of C made it 3-2 in the top of the sixth with two singles and some crafty base running.

In the bottom of the sixth Kidz outfielder Chris Cruz showed tremendous hustle in legging out an infield hit. Shortstop Pat Brown worked out a walk, putting runners on first and second. An errant pitch allowed the runners to advance to second and third. Lefty Pitcher Tommy McElhattan who fouled off the first pitch followed up with a viscous line drive right up the middle to score both Chris and Pat to win the game. Tommy Mac was mobbed by his teammates in a tremendous victory celebration for the Kidz. In the after game talk Coaches John Brown and Jim O'Connor explained to the team how proud they were of them for not giving up and coming from behind not once but twice to secure the victory. Before both games the teams were announced and lined up on both sides of the infield. The National Anthem was played and the cry of PLAY BALL was heard. Rockaway LL President Marty Andreson was on hand to throw out the ceremonial first pitch.  This was a nice touch added to a great series and should be made a tradition.

Game Two… Sunday, July 8

Kidz win 5-1.  The Kidz pitcher Pat Brown came through in a big way. He gave up just one hit in six innings, striking out six batters and snuffing out the start of a K of C rally in the fifth by catching a screaming line drive and gunning the ball to first to double up the runner.  Aside form his tremendous pitching performance Pat was like a demon possessed when it came to defense, gobbling up anything that came up the middle and getting the runner at first.
  The Kidz scored four runs in the second inning when third baseman Eddie Re led off with a two strike double over the right fielders head. Outfielder Joey Forcina followed up with a double of his own to score Eddie for the first Kidz run. Up came Dominic Fiorentino who got plunked on the left foot and went down. Dom was able to get up and walk it off putting runners on first and second. Rightfielder Andrew Faircloth came up and drew a walk to load the bases for DH Pat Kelly. Pat put the wood to the ball and and orbited it over the right centerfielders head to drive in three runs.

In the fifth inning shortstop Cris Cruz banged out a leadoff double and was followed by a Pat Brown who singled to drive in the fifth Kidz run. Second baseman Jim O'Connor handled several grounders at his position keeping the ball in front of him and making the sure throw to first base. Tommy McElhattan who pitched the first game of the series patrolled the outfield like a panther. Catcher Kenny Fiorentino made it look so easy behind the plate like he's done all year long. Travis Rivera played a flawless first base during the Championship Series. Steven Calciano contributed a hit of his own during the contest and played a solid outfield.   

Outfielder Matt Harnisch came into the game fresh from sports camp and boosted the defense for the Kidz on the field and in the dugout. Mr. Clutch/Determination Jimmy Lutz also played outfield for the Kidz.

The Kidz take their hats off to a tremendous K of C Team who gave them an education earlier in the year during some pick up scrimmage games. Richie Knott Jr. and his coaches should have nothing but pride for their fine squad for the way they played and conducted themselves during the season and in the Championship Series. In this case it really was a shame that one team had to lose in what was a so evenly matched contest. Once again thanks to all for coming down and witnessing baseball as it should be played and what even more people are now saying was the best Boys Minor baseball they have ever seen.   


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