Written by Biko Skalla:
The Nanners made their first trip to Historic McCrary Park in Asheboro, North Carolina, since the summer of 2017 and came away with a 6-3 win over the newly rebranded ZooKeepers. This was supposed to be the third game of the summer back on May 30th but the stadium originally built in 1946 was still under construction at that point as the team was putting the finishing touches on their immaculate new turf field.
After a scoreless top of the first inning, Ryan, Business as Usual, Kennedy, started his record tying fourth summer as a Banana with a 1-2-3 bottom half. He worked around two singles and a walk in the second inning and then hurled another 1-2-3 frame in the third. Ryan plunked Bryce, The King of Airboats, Marsh, and then gave up a single to Ronald, Tip Drill, Evans, who were both bunted over to second and third. Carson, The Wizard of, Ozmer, hit what seemed like a sac fly to center to give the ZooKeepers the first run of the game but Tyle, I Taught Mat Wolf Everything He Knows, Hankins, had the Bananas check to see if Marsh left third early and by jolly you wouldn’t believe it but he did! The 8-5 double play would end the inning and keep the game scoreless. That would mark the end of the night for Kennedy, who scattered three hits over four scoreless innings and picked up one strikeout along the way.
In came Blake, Bah-la-kay, McGehee, who got two quick outs but then gave up a single to Trent, Mad Sus He Goes to Transylvania, Youngblood, who stole second and scored on a single from Ryan, Teachers Leave Them Kids Alone, Waldschmidt. In the top of the sixth, Taylor, Polly Want a Cracker, Perritt, got an unassisted double-play from a loopy liner snagged by Evans at first to finish up six shutout innings of two-hit, three-walk, two-strikeout ball.
McGehee came back out for the bottom of the sixth and was greeted by Bryce Marsh’s fifth home run in twelve games this summer. Blake retired the next three ZooKeepers in order and Asheboro took a 2-0 lead into the seventh. In between innings, Vinny, I got Sweet Sunglasses at Buc-ee’s for the Very Fair Price of $275, Rauso, murked his ZooKeeper opponent in a dance off, igniting the Bananas dugout with a powerful energy that would translate into a game-changing rally.
In came Danny, You Won’t Ketchup, Heintz, to face the meat of the Bananas lineup. Bryson, The Ball’s on the Ground, Bloomer, reached on an error from the shortstop Michael, The Armadillo, Zarillo. The Boomer swiped second and with one out Dylan, Eight Syllables for the Price of One, Kurahashi-Choy Foo, flared a single to right to bring home Bryson. KFC then stole second himself and got to third when the throw from Chase, Rolling in the Deep, Waddell, went into centerfield. Jack, John, Renwick, smoked a liner to right and Dylan scored to make it 2-2. Choy Foo had to wait at third to make sure the bullet wasn’t caught, which made Ozmer in right field think he could possibly gun down KFC at the plate and Jack took second base when the throw went to home. Renwick stole third and Asheboro brought the infield in for Caden, Ever, Green, who ripped a single up the middle to drive in Jack and give the Nanners their first lead of the game.
Tyler, You Can’t Catch a Ball if Your Facing Backwards, Gillum, and Corey, This New Adam Sandler Movie’s Actually Awesome, Pye, turned to Max, Not Actually Birdman, Bergmann, who gave up a leadoff single to Andrew, Ariana, Grande, and then plunked Seth, The Urchin, Werchan, in the bottom of the cleat. Youngblood sac bunted them over and then Waldschmidt laced a single up the middle to bring home Grande to tie the game at three runs apiece. With runners at the corners and one out, Bergmann whipped a nasty pickoff to first to cut down Waldschmidt and then diced up Zarillo on a sharp slider to escape the jam with only the one run scoring.
Leading off the eight inning, on a 2-2 pitch Ty, Chrome to the Dome, Jackson, took a front door breaking ball off the helmet and immediately screamed to the Bananas dugout that it was time to get wild. Beau, Bears, Beats, Battlestar Galactica, Brewer, answered Ty’s rallying cry with a frozen rope up the middle and Bloomer dunked a bloop double just about on the right field line to bring home Jackson as the Bananas retook the lead 4-3. With one out, Choy Foo walked and then Renwick walked with the bases juiced to push home Brewer from third. Peanut then smashed a ball straight to Grande at the hot corner who started a 5-2-3 double play to get the ZooKeepers off the field.
Bergmann went back out on the bump for the bosom, I mean bottom of the eighth and pumped a 1-2-3 frame to keep the Nanners in front by two. Taylor, Orange, Justus, lead off the ninth with a single through the left side and Drew, eEeEeEeEeEeEeE, Yniesta, bounced a ball up the middle for a base hit right after. Ty then laid down a bunt, but the Asheboro pitcher Patrick, Let’s Not Get Political, Libby, pounced on the ball and fired to third to cut down the lead runner Justus. Beau stroked a single to center to score Yniesta and extend the Savannah lead to 6-3.
Max went back out for his third inning of work and gave up a leadoff double, then got a strikeout, and then gave up a walk to bring the tying run to the plate, causing Gillum to go to the arm barn to bring in Nick, Hip Hip, Foray. A flyout to center and a flyout to right later, and the Nanners were victorious 6-3.
There were some stellar offensive performances from the Bananas in the win:
Beau Brewer was on base four out of five times, going 2-3 with an RBI, a run scored, a steal, and two walks.
Taylor Justus was on base three out of four times, going 2-3 with a walk.
Bryson Bloomer secured the Coastal Plain League hitter of the night honors with his 2-5, double, RBI, run scored and stolen base…
— Coastal Plain League (@CPLBaseball) June 13, 2022
It was the fifth straight win for the Bananas, who went 6-1 in a week straight of games without a night off. They extended their CPL West lead over the red hot Lexington County Blowfish to two games and now get a very much deserved rest day on Monday.
The boys will head up to Florence to take on the Flamingos on Tuesday night, kicking off five games in as many days. All you incredible Nanners fans deserve a day off as well. Rest, recuperate, and get ready for another wild week as the fellas continue to prove their on a mission to run it back! It will all be broadcast LIVE on where else but Bananas Insiders 😉
An enormous thank you is in order for my dear friend Katelyn, RIP D.B. Cooper, Scott, for making the five hour trip with me to Asheboro and blessing all of us with her incredible baseball and animal kingdom analogies, as well as assisting me with many of the nicknames you read in this very story. I had high hopes for Katelyn’s broadcasting skills, but even my mightiest of expectations were surpassed by her uncanny ability to tell the story on the field through her thorough research of a wide variety of animals who share characteristics important for athletes to have. This was not the last time the world will get to see Katelyn Scott, Bananas TV Color Commentator.