Oof baboof. Summer 2021. What a wild ride. With a few days to gather my thoughts and reflect on the madness that just took place, it is now time to look back at the best moments of the last 3 months. So grab a soda and popcorn, or a slippery banana and a burger, or some kombucha with a pack of wasabi flavored dried seaweed, and sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. This will of course be a multimedia presentation.

The fellas reported for duty on May 23rd for an optional Sunday night practice. They got one more day of semi-normalcy before being thrust into their first big project of the summer. An original Bananas music video: For the First Time in Forever…

You just knew the team was destined for greatness when you saw them nail the dancing shot around the mound. Now we’ll mostly just be focusing on the big moments and videos of the summer, but I think it’s worth watching the first pregame ritual to really see how it all began. Just think of this as the pre-season ritual…

It’s the laughs from guys at lord knows what Nick, The Face of Pest Control, Clarno, is saying that really makes it for me.

When it comes to the Bananas legendary opening night intros, well of course they did not disappoint this year…

When it came to game time, the Bacon took a 2-0 lead before the Bananas ever got to swing the bat. Exactly how you want to start season! But the boys would tie it up in the second inning as second year Nanner, Drew, One Swing, Everyone Knows the Rules, Yniesta, scored the first Bananas run of the summer on a Nick Clarno bases loaded walk. Then Ty, This Was the End of My Temp Contract, Jackson, scored on a Chase, “Anyone Wanna Play Some Maf?”, Achuff, sac fly to center, and simultaneously created the first viral moment of the summer…

A light 1.5 million views on the first thing he ever did in a game (also shoutout Savanah, An MLB Team Will Never Have More Followers Than Us, Alaniz, for the perfect sound for the clip).

After locking up player of the year honors in the Gulf South Conference, Danny, I’ll Only do an Interview if I’m Being Massaged, Oberst, gave the Nanners their first lead of the summer with a solo shot to left field. Dan pushed another run across with a sac fly in the 5th and then Clarno had one of the funniest moments of the summer in the 8th, slapping a 2-run triple to left and being thrown out at home by about 20 feet. My hard drive with all the games on it is malfunctioning and my computer won’t record sound with video when I try to screen record right now (that just happens sometimes for me). SO, I want everyone to know that I downloaded the entire 7.2 GB game onto my laptop to cut this play. Alright, complaining time over, here’s the fruits of my labors…

Pretty darn eventful game to start the summer. After the opening night 6-3 victory, with a little help from Clarno (as well as incredible camera, sound, and light work from the dynamic duo of Nick, Just Call me Gandalf, Freeman and Alex, Go Cocks, Marinelli), I laid down underneath Danny and we created to first ever Ripe Rundown…

I may be biased, but Dan getting absolutely raked by Nick’s massage really makes me chuckle.

Game 2 was the coming out party for what would be by far the most dominant pitching staff in the Coastal Plain League. Four scoreless innings from Kyle, “Best Way I Can Describe This Summer is ‘Oof Baboof,'” Luigs, 2 from Tom, Turns Out I’m a Really Good Collegiate Pitcher, Vincent, 1 from Knicko, The Knicks are Back, Billings, and 2 electric frames highlighted by strikeouts of the first 5 guys he faced by Dylan, Show Me What You’ve Got, Cunningham. A Bill, This Summer Was a Dream, LeRoy, RBI double and a Livan, Wait Until You See Me Pitch Next Summer, Reinoso, RBI single is all the Nanners would need for a 2-0 win over the Blowfish. Here’s one of the most unique ways we highlighted any of the games all summer…

Trippy! Also I have to toss in this Tok that was filmed during a pitching change. Sure it fell just short of the million view mark, but it’s awesome, so here it is…

@thesavbananas

POV: you’re our opponent, you’re relieving the starting pitcher, and you look over at our bench. what you doin? #savannahbananas #baseball #foryou

♬ Bundles – Tik Toker

The guys finally took to the road for game 3 and all you really need to know is it was the debut of CPL pitcher of the year, Joe, The God of Mafia, Miller, and Ty and Bill both hit their first career home runs. It was Ty’s 3rd game as a Banana. It was Bill’s 109th. I’ll tell you what though, Bill’s first dinger was well worth the wait…

It’s mind bending to me that this all happened in the first three games. I promise this will not be a game-by-game recap, I’ve just been mystified with how electric the season began. Unfortunately for me, there was an absolute smacker of a moment in game 4 too. Really quick, really quick okay! Nathan, Who’s Your Daddy?, Dettmer, escaped a bases loaded jam just giving up one run in the 1st and Eduardo, I Was Born for This, Malinowski, tied it up one out into the 2nd…

The Nanners offense was ignited by Eddie’s absolute tater tot and rolled to an 11-3 win. The other notable item from this game is Kyle took a 5-year-old on a date during the game and the video got over a million views on Facebook…

This was the first video for the Bananas that ever got over one million views on the ole’ FB. It’s not alone in the 7-figure club anymore, but that’s a story for later in this article.

OKAY OKAY OKAY. We are no longer breaking down every game that happened. (Bananas won game 5, 8-5 over Lexington County).

On their way to winning nine straight games to start the season the Bananas made plenty of incredible content, but I’ve got an unsung hero that I personally appreciated a lot from Tik Tok…

Eduardo does his job to a T, but Christian, I Hope I Can Win My First Championship of My Life This Summer, Dearman, obviously steals the show in the background. I just appreciate a good performance you know.

So anyhow, the Bacon stroll into town with the Bananas 9-0 on the summer. Tristan, #BrewCrew, Peters, doubled and scored on an error in the 1st inning providing all the offense the Nanners would need on the evening. Kyle Luigs only allowed a double with one out in the top of the first before retiring the next 14 Bacon hitters in a row in a 6 inning, 9 strikeout performance. Joe Miller came in for his only relief appearance of the summer, retired the first 7 guys he faced making it 21 straight between the two Bananas pitchers, before giving up a one out double in the 9th and then striking out the next two hitters. That put the finishing touch on both a 15 strikeout, 2 hit shutout for the Bananas, as well as a sweet hype video for the 10-game win streak to start the summer…

Electrifying stuff right there. You know what else is electrifying? 6.5 million views on a Tik Tok…

This actually happened during game/win #8 of the season, the first time the Spartanburgers came to town, but wasn’t posted until a couple days after win #10. Anyways, Ty took over the world of baseball with this infamous mic’d up diving play immediately after talking about how he just struck out in front of his girlfriend’s mom. Good timing Ty, good timing.

So the boys would win one more on their first game against the RedWolves (now Flamingos), of the summer, but then finally lost in a continuation of a rained out game in Macon. A fortuitous hop gave the Bacon a couple extra runs in the 6th that would propel them to a 5-4 victory. What did the Bananas do in game 2 of the doubleheader you ask? Well Ryan, This is Old Hat for Me, Kennedy, with a little help from Cole, Get My Tush in a Kilt, Kitchen and Jakob, I Hope People Don’t Forget I Was the Nastiest Pitcher in the League for 2 Weeks, Barker, combined to pitch the first no-hitter in Bananas franchise history in a 9-0 drubbing. Here’s the epic picture from the evening that will live in infamy…

 

That’s the way a destroyer of a team responds to their first loss in 12 games. The right way to celebrate such a feat? I think an article on EPSN should do the trick…

Pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty good stuff by Alden.

After some light reading, the Bananas took down the team formerly known as the RedWolves 6-0 and then we created what probably ended up being my favorite Ripe Rundown of the summer…

The idea for this one came from Adam, Don’t be Alarmed if You See Me Doing Calisthenics at a Rest Station at 4:00 in the Morning, Moreau, and then the execution on my setup was all Kara, Pool Shark, Heater, and the marketing team. It’s really the moments right after the Cole Kitchen kiss in which Alex (who’s got the camera on me), loses his mind laughing, partly because Kara who was holding the boom also broke out in a much more silent laugh herself. This all builds up to Jesse, Just Wait for the Most Hype Hit-by-Pitch You’ll Ever See, Sherrill, dropping the perfect, “You’re looking tasty down there” line, and then the necessary “Shut up Alex!” from Nick (who had the camera on the players). The whole thing just brings pure joy to my heart.

The rest of June can be told through the slew of top notch Tik Toks. First up, Danny Oberst attempting the Chubby Bunny Challenge…

I don’t think there was a better man for this job than Dan. Now I present Kyle Luigs getting guys to smell his shirt…

Classic trick! It’s the reactions that really warms the soul on that one. And lastly I present Adam Moreau pouring out his heart…

Well said Adam, well said my friend. OH, and I cannot forget the birthday of the best assistant coach in the CPL, Reginald, COME ON!!!!!!!!!!!, Horton…

In all seriousness I want want everyone to remember this from the summer.

The Bananas with Reggie: 40-9

With Bananas without Reggie because he had a family reunion: 0-1.

The stats speak for themselves.

A couple more pieces of can’t miss content for you as we wrap up June…

@thesavbananas

man literally stole the mic and did this mid game…but the fans loved it so it’s cool ig #savannahbananas #JuntosImparables #fyp #hotmic #baseballboys

♬ original sound – thesavbananas

Now that’s what I call talent. After the game, Cole Kitchen had some help eating his player meal from Nathan Dettmer…

Obviously Cole was terrific, but I really hope people appreciate the dynamite job Dettmer did as Kitchen’s arms there.

Then we got to see Nick Clarno fake cry and Tyler, This Should be on My Coach of the Year Reel, Gillum, put on the acting performance of the year, if not decade…

Also terrific job Christian Dearman. Nailed your line buddy.

And I would be remised if I didn’t include the most beautiful clip ever taken in Grayson Stadium…

@thesavbananas

mid pitch bussin’ down to a tik tok dance might just be the most iconic thing we’ve ever done #savannahbananas #gobadbishh #foryou #baseball #dance

♬ Bundles – Tik Toker

Hang that one in the Louvre.

While this was all happening the Bananas were going 17-2 to start the summer to win the CPL West 1st Half and therefore clinching the first spot in the Pettit Cup Playoffs…

Shoutout Alex Marinelli for coming on the road with us to shoot that video and then editing it into the wee hours of the morning. The end product was well worth the hard work!

When it comes to the players’ rewards for their hard work in the 1st half, well of course the team had something in store for them…

Once again, I’d like to thank the Good Lord for making Nick Clarno a Banana.

Now with Major League Baseball starting to investigate sticky substances there was no way the Nanners weren’t going to hold their teammates up to the same standards…

@thesavbananas

“ICYMI Kyle Luigs dropped his pants the other day after maybe too clean of an inning…#stickysubstances #mlb #baseballboys #savannahbananas #foryou

♬ His & Hers – Internet Money & Gunna

It wasn’t all fun and games with the guys though, as you can see here there was some serious tension behind the scenes…

I’ve never not loved getting another installation of #TheBananasOffice, although I’m not sure we’ll ever eclipse the brilliance of “the standoff” remake…

Okay sorry sorry that’s offseason content I just got carried away. Back to the story at hand…

So baseball wise, June ended with three straight wins and July began with six more in a row for the 2nd best winning streak of the summer. In the midst of another dominant run the Bananas played Banana Ball in a scrimmage against the Catawba Valley Stars and it was a WILD night…

Shots of note (there were plenty):

Nick Clarno smashing the Banana Cream Sodas on his face which ended up breaking the internet and landing him on SportsCenter…

@thesavbananas

we do not care 👹 give us more dares… we’re ready for ‘em. #savannahbananas #baseballboys #dare #fyp #shotgun #bananacreamsoda

♬ We do not care – JQ

Also in the background of that same shot in an incredibly colorful shirt you can see Stan, The Absolute Man, Grossfeld, the Pulitzer Prize winning photojournalist for the Boston Globe who was working on a story about the Bananas.

Also Nick had 2 separate inning walk-offs. Also he fielded a grounder barehanded at first with his glove in his mouth because he swore Kyle was gonna strike the kid out. It was an electric night to say the least.

The next day, AKA the 4th of July, the Bananas dropped their second iconic baseball movie scene of the summer…

Not sure I’ll ever have a better performance as a guy holding lights up in the air on a baseball field than in this very video. I guess it was also a pretty good job done by the guys who actually filmed and directed this, Nick and Alex. When it came to the game in Macon on the 4th, well the Bananas provided all the fireworks…

A 19-3 shellacking on the final game of the 1st half. Yowzers.

To celebrate the team’s continued dominance the fellas got a custom gift paying homage to one of the team’s rallying cries…

The Tigers getting fired up just fires me up. This is also a great reminder for me that I have to see if there’s an extra one of these puppies laying around anywhere.

The nine-game winning streak came to an end at the hands of the soon-to-be Florence Flamingos, BUT the guys got to show their style before the ballgame and I’ve gotta say they did not disappoint…

The mid-summer loss will be forgotten, the fits will not.

A couple days later the Bananas had 7 former players drafted, highlighted by Cade, Mr. Quality Start, Povich, who was snagged by the Twins in the 3rd round. The Bananas did lose one current player as well, with the Pride of Manitoba, Canada, Tristan Peters, getting the call from the Brewers in the 7th round. With a couple guys being signed as free agents the Nanners ended up sending a CPL leading 10 guys into affiliated ball this year.

Now we come to the only blemish on what would nearly be a perfect summer without it. The Bananas losing their first ever game in kilts. Unlike the random loss a few days earlier, this one will actually go down in the history books as the Nanners are now 4-1 all-time in kilts because of it. BUT, you know what we can also remember it by? Another incredible entrance, highlighted by this sweet Tok…

@thesavbananas

Reply to @parker.chloe23 yall these dares are too easy…give us an actual challenge #savannahbananas #baseballboys #dare #horse #fypage #fypシ

♬ industry baby by lil nas x – lil nas x

Plus, Tristan’s last dance in Savannah should be remembered forever as well…

Incredible stuff from the best line dancer this side of the Mississippi.

The Bananas bounced back from the only time in the 44-game regular season that they lost 2 straight, by handling the Bacon on the road and then coming home for Strikeout Cancer night, which was kicked off by the best first pitch of the season…

As you can tell by Greg’s reaction, the actual toss was not the best first pitch of the season, but everything else around it was. Greg had entered remission literally one day before this, and had this first pitch planned for months. In a really sad turn to the story, Greg passed away just a couple weeks ago. But his family reached back out to us to let us know just how much this day meant to him and how happy he was because of it. I was lucky enough to get to meet Greg and got to chat with him before the game. What a magnificent man he was. If I didn’t know his story beforehand, I wouldn’t once have guessed he had been battling cancer for the last four years of his life. He was a man filled with joy and thanks for the time he had been given, and it was a gift to have gotten to meet him myself. In him and his family’s honor, as well as everyone else in the world affected by cancer, we had a beautiful moment in the stadium…

Big time chills and tears moment for everyone who was there in person.

When it came to the ballgame, it was deja vu to the 10th win of the summer. Kyle Luigs tossed 6 innings of 1-hit ball while striking out 7. Jared, Temp Contract, Shmemp Contract, Beck, retired all 10 Bacon hitters he faced (a dropped 3rd strike allowed this to happen), striking out 5 of them. A Dan Oberst sac fly was all the offense that was needed to secure the 1-0 victory on the special night.

The next day the Stan Grossfeld article in The Globe came out and Adam Moreau’s girlfriend Corey, You Have No Idea the Power of Gems, Champer, became famous…

Also shoutout “Christopher” Dearman for a phenomenal ending to the story.

With just a week left in the regular season the Bananas made a splash in their announcement of a groundbreaking NIL move…

All I’ve got to say is OOO-AH-AH-AH-AH!!!

Now this may not be the craziest moment of the summer, but I’m gonna throw this in here because on July 22nd Bryson, Bloom Baby!, Bloomer, hit his 2nd homer of the season. A week later he would be the team leader with 6 overall…

And here’s number 3 on the summer for you…

You can count on one hand how many guys have hit home runs to that part of the park in the 6-year history of the Bananas. The video above is also my nomination for best Twitter caption of the summer.

After his wild evening, Bryson laid down with me on 2nd as we hammered out another one of my favorite Ripe Rundowns of the summer…

I promise you that a video of Alex frantically and silently jumping and flailing around trying to get the drummer’s attention is one of my top 10 wishes in life. What a riot that was.

Andddddd here’s Bryson’s 3rd homer in two games…

Anddddddd here’s his 4th homer in two games…

I don’t know if you can tell, but I really enjoyed watching Bloomer play baseball this summer. Ice in the veins, onions, the clutch gene, a flare for the dramatic, whatever you want to call it, the dude’s got it.

When we returned to the friendly confines of Grayson Stadium it was Bill’s turn to go viral…

I think this was the moment where it really hit me how powerful of a summer we were having. Just nonstop virality, and this one really took off on cable news too. Props to Bill for absolutely nailing this every step of the walkup too. Wild stuff!

And how about over 3 million views on Bryson walking up to the plate to Kahoot music in the same game…

@thesavbananas

Reply to @bean.god y’all heard him…drop your hypest song picks for Bryson’s next walk up selection #savannahbananas #baseballboys #fypシ #youchoose

♬ SZAS VERSE KISS ME MORE – ✨ SZA FANPAGE ✨

Oh boy and then this ALSO happening in the same game…

Pretty funny stuff there and there was a lot of good interaction with our Tweet. But what you don’t see here is the over 3 million view Tik Tok that Ty will create on his own account from this moment…

Guy can go viral on his own! I personally really just get a kick out of seeing how it happened live and then how Ty turned it into over 3 mil on his account. That’s some social media talent right there.

When the men were tired of all the winning on the field, they tried their hand at winning in the locker room too…

Extra phenomenal job by Eduardo and Jesse here. That’s the full buy in from the guys that take videos to the next level. Also, shoutout Ben, The I-16 Bandit, Sheffield, for a 10/10 job writing and directing this. What an absolute blast it was to be a part of.

Now I just have to put this clip in here from the July 28th game because it’s one of the crazier things I’ve seen on a baseball field…

That’s baseball, Suzyn.

Hey! Do you wanna know how to get 2.3 million views on Tik Tok? Just have Ty walk up to the plate singing…

That’s some infectious joy for the people right there.

Now we’ve gotten to the last home game of the regular season, and it’s time to breakout the NIL jerseys…

TURN ME UP!

When it came to the ballgame, the Bananas found themselves down 5-1 in the 5th, before scratching a couple runs across on a Bill, Please Mention This Was Mere Feet From Being a Homer, Knight, sac fly and then a Ty Jackson RBI single. Danny Oberst tied the game with a 2-run blast in the 7th but the Nanners found themselves down a run going into the bottom of the 9th. I’ll let the “Outer Banks” video tell the rest of the story…

Easily one of my favorite videos of the summer for a handful of reasons, chief among them getting to see Matthew, The Messiah, Steidl, going nuts with the flag in center at the end.

And from the same night, here’s another 3.2 million views on Tik Tok…

Bryson Bloomer have yourself a summer buddy!

And just like that the Bananas have won the 2nd half, as they did the 1st, and have home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Time to get hyped…

Here’s a peak at how Reggie was firing the guys up for every game this summer…

Unfortunately, a playoff worthy pregame speech couldn’t get the Nanners offense going as they fell 4-0 in game one of the CPL Western Division Championship to the High Point-Thomasville Hi-Toms.

The guys broke the bats out in game 2 though, as homers from Danny and Eddie backed up 6.2 superb innings from Joe Miller who struck out a season high 11 hitters in an 8-2 Bananas win…

The Nanners jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning of the decisive game 3 on an Eduardo double to drive home Dan. Then in the bottom of the 4th we had a 2 hour 45 minute rain delay with pretty much nonstop entertainment throughout the stadium and on the broadcast (at least I’d like to think we were entertaining on the broadcast). When the game resumed, Kitchen scored on a balk, Bill came in on a passed ball, and then Danny lined a 2-out, 2-run single to all but put the game out of reach. The Bananas would cruise to an emphatic 10-0 win to advance to the championship, booking them a trip to Morehead City to take on the Marlins in game 1.

In Big Rock Stadium the Bananas fell behind 4-0, before an impassioned speech from Tyler, Who’s Cutting Onions?, Gillum, inspired a 2-run 6th and 3-run 7th to take a 5-4 lead. The 1st, 3rd, and 4th runs were all driven in by Livan and the 2nd and 5th runs were both driven in by Bryson. Matthew Steidl threw 4.2 stifling innings of scoreless relief and then Dylan Cunningham shut the door…

Now the Bananas had two chances at the championship and both games would be at home. Did someone order another hype video for the occasion?

How about Jesse, The Next Vin Scully, Cole, with the play-by-play for the last out of the 2016 championship?! Didn’t sound too bad!

If that wasn’t enough, Bananas Nation also had a message for the guys before game 2…

Just awesome stuff. The Bananas brought a 2-0 lead into the 6th but the Marlins showed why they were a championship caliber team with 3 home runs as they went on to win 5-3 and even the series at a game apiece.

So it all came down to game 3. Because of course it would. And then probably the coolest thing I’ve ever seen on a baseball field happened…

 

FIRST SWING OF THE PLAYOFFS. ARE YOU KIDDING ME.

Drew opened the floodgates, and then Bryson blew up the dam…

The rest of the game was really a celebration of the entire summer, and it all led up to this…

I couldn’t think of a better way to win it all than for Danny Oberst to catch a foul pop, the very thing he failed to do in his first ever fielding opportunity as a Banana 3 years ago. So darn cool, just so darn cool.

Okay while we’re at it here, let’s watch those homers from a different angle…

Anddddd now it’s time to truly breakout the all the emotions piece. Prepare for all the emotions…

One of the coolest things I’ve seen in my life. I know any team would be full of jubilation if they won the championship, but I can’t see it meaning as much to any other group of guys than these cats. This was truly special.

The saddest part of it all was the vast majority of the team having to leave within the next two days. All that work over the last two and a half months just to scatter back out across the US. But we were lucky enough to keep 5 guys here, as Danny, Bill, Kyle, Christian, and CPL Championship star Matt, Adam Moreau’s Long Lost Bother, Malatesta, all stayed on for the 2nd annual Breakfast Bowl. They teamed up with some of the most dynamic Premier Team players and a few exciting new faces to form a fierce squad that wasn’t afraid to all hop in a Kia Soul together…

I wasn’t sure you could fit anybody in the backseat with Wild Bill, but they did that and much more!

And one game into the Bowl the Bananas broke the internet…

Then in game 2 we broke the internet again…

Okay so most of our viral content is precisely planned and executed which made this all the more enjoyable for me. Just pure luck, (or skill if you ask Bill). I mean the play was actually a pretty tricky one, but obviously the most impressive part is predicting the entire thing immediately before it happened. Absolutely bonkers.

This is where I count my lucky stars that I am where I am, because after I was a big part of a clip that ran in every SportsCenter show for a full day, I got to do a duet with a country music star…

This interview has singlehandedly convinced me that I should still be pursuing a music career alongside broadcasting.

Then in the next Breakfast Bowl game, stop me if you heard this before, but we went viral…

I guess technically this was before the 3rd game, but heck it counts! Over a milly on Facebook, put that in your pipe and smoke it. Also shoutout 2-game Nanner Jamey, Statistically the Best Banana Ever, Smart, for the performance of the video in my opinion. If I was Mrs. Vanvulkenburg I would be beyond flattered.

Kind of out of place story wise but this is right when Joe Miller won Pitcher of the Year, Tyler Gillum won Manager of the year, and I won Broadcaster of the Year. The Nanners also had a Coastal Plain League high 13 guys make 1st or 2nd Team All-CPL. There were still a few Bananas who had phenomenal stats and didn’t get All-CPL, that’s how deep this squad was.

And then unfortunately due to the city of Savannah shutting down all events on city owned property due to COVID, the Breakfast Bowl was cut short by a game, BUT in the one game we did get to play we of course went viral…

@thesavbananas

can we get two claps and a ric flair for the most epic pitcher entrance (and K) of all time👏👏 WOO #savannahbananas #baseball #ricflair #fypシ #viral

♬ original sound – Tristen🧃

Well deserved Dearman, an absolute showman every step of the way!

And then to put the whole summer to bed… Well Bill and I went to bed…

What a wild, wild, wild, crazy wild ride that was.

Now we all have fully documented what was the greatest summer in Bananas history, (and in my life). This is a terrific place for a big thank you to the fans because without you none of this happens. It blows my mind how fired up Bananas Nation is for everything going on in Savannah and I’m floored by how much support I’ve had from the fans in my two years here.

The content throughout the entire summer was mind boggling to go back through. I may be bias, but there were a plethora of videos I wanted to include in this and couldn’t because it would just be too long, (I’m pretty sure it’s far too long already). But what can I do, I’m a longwinded writer and I just enjoyed everything we did this summer too much. Is that a crime?!?

Alright, that’s all the stuff for now. Keep it locked to Bananas social media for some more great content from this summer as well as some really exciting announcements about the future!