Bloop Single

I’ve been thinking about slumps. Former baseball players do that occasionally.

There are different kinds of slumps. Some are like what I had last week in our first night of softball, a doubleheader where I got up 10 times, and absolutely crushed the ball on 9 of them. I was line-driving it everywhere, frozen ropes as my coach used to call them.

I got on base one time.

Some slumps are worse than that, the kind where you can’t touch anything, you just ain’t seein’ it. It’s a crazy game, one where hitting horribly and hitting incredibly can have the same exasperating result: nothing. Whichever kind of slump you are in, you just long for something, anything, to break you out of it. You’re looking for that ugly, desperation, bloop single that barely gets over the 2nd baseman’s head, and you hope it will make the nasty slump come to an end.

I’ve been wondering what kind of post will be the bloop single to break me out of my blogging slump…and as always, I’m surprised at what does it.


Yes, friends, my alma mater beat Liz’s alma mater 3-1 today down in Salem to take home the school’s first state championship in any boys’ sport. 22 years ago, when I was wearing #4 and playing third base, everybody would have guessed basketball would be our best shot at a state championship; we were never very good on the diamond. But 22 years is a long time, and there was a lot of red and black in the Keizer Volcanoes stadium today to watch.

Yes, I went. For part of it. Elaine thought I was crazy.

I missed the dramatic ending, because I had a prior commitment at church to honor our graduating high school seniors…that really was more important. But I saw two great pitchers today, Nick Struck for Clackamas and Ryan Gorton for Tigard. Struck threw a great game, with Tigard manufacturing their only run on two questionable calls and a single. Gorton was even better; he threw a perfect game through 5 innings; a perfect game. The Cavs couldn’t touch him. I was driving back to Newberg for the top of the 6th. Cavs finally got a single; moved him around to third on two ground balls; then, a fly ball to right center that should have ended the inning.

The guy missed it. E-9 in the scorebooks, and the game is tied. Next hitter launches a two run home run over the right field fence, and the Cavs have a championship!

I was hoping to see my high school coach, but no such luck; he’s been gone over a decade, and didn’t show up for the game that I could see. It was fun to see how some things change, while others are the same. My brain still thinks though every pitch and situation, just like it used to. But I can’t imagine that many of my friends coming to watch me play! And, I’m amazed at the dollars in uniforms now. Both teams had warm up jerseys as well as home and away game jerseys, coats, and at least two different styles of hats. Here’s a few shots I took at the game…

Assistant Coach John Arntson


Nick Struck:

Nick Struck

Nick Struck

Hopefully this is my bloop single that breaks the slump!

5 thoughts on “Bloop Single

  1. Nice hit, Gregg!

    That was a fascinating post. Sorry you had to miss the end of the game, and the celebration that undoubtedly followed.

    When I saw you at the Senior Salute of course I didn’t realize what you were missing to be there. I really appreciate your commitment! Thanks!


  2. Wow! Finally! The Cavs are State Champs. However, it might have happened in ’86 when you played, except for one play. I can’t remember the opponent (might have been Canby) you hit a long, high, arching drive into deep left center field and the ball hit squarely on the TOP EDGE of the fence. It teetered for a second like it was going to drop over the fence, but after a seeming eternity, an unknown force caused the ball to drop back into the playing field. Had that ball gone OVER the fence for a home run, it is my belief that the team would have been so jazzed that who knows what would have happened after that? Maybe Clackamas would have had its first State championship 22 years earlier!


  3. Congrats to your Cavs! I was out of town and missed the game, but my mom and sis gave me the rundown. They said it was a great game, even though our beloved Tigers lost it in the end. YAY! 🙂


  4. Dad, dad, dad… 🙂

    The rest of you need to know this is a long-running family joke. It was a lazy fly ball that I thought would be the third out of the inning, but it hit the base of the fence. Any time dad exaggerates about something my brother and I have done to this day, we say, “Yeah, that ball is teetering on the fence again…”


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