SMYRNA, TN – After early morning rain, the sky cleared up and the Sam Davis Home looked as if it would dodge the brunt of Sunday’s storm to complete the day’s double header. Under clear skies, the Nashville Maroons bested the Phoenix of East Nashville in a 7-1 contest that lasted under two hours.
At the beginning of the day’s second contest, all in attendance thought that, perhaps, they had dodged the bullet that had seemed to be coming strong all week. With the sun still shining, the Farriers won the bat toss and elected to hit second, forcing the Scouts to open the match at the line on their home grounds.
The Scouts got out to an early lead in the top of the first, but were matched in the bottom by the Farriers who also plated two aces. Over the next two innings, however, the Scouts got the willows going behind big hits by Long Shanks, Elder, Chief, and Mitts and gained a sizable lead heading into the fourth inning on top, 11-3.
Momentum was killed in the fourth, though, as encroaching rainclouds finally reached the grounds and killed the Scouts production at the line. The match was delayed and, though already sopping wet, the ballists sought shelter in the Sam Davis Home’s old barn. Those privy to weather prediction told the rain should soon dissipate and they were right—the grounds once again saw some sun and the game was back on.
But the rain had done its damage, and the grounds had become hardly more than a giant mud pit, with the home dish, first sack, and the hurlers line nothing more than sop. Ballists had difficulty legging it out of the box and rounding the sacks, resulting in hilarious moments of slipping and falling, including a face plant by the Scouts’ own Brass Hands, a slipping spectacle by Cornbread, who somehow kept from falling, and a complete and utter “mud-ification” of Skeeter, who slipped, fell, and splashed in the mud trying to tally an ace at the dish.
Slipping and sliding didn’t provide the only show of the match, though, as Tiny, stretching to make a play at first sack, exploded his gentlemanly attire. He will no doubt need a fresh pair of pants for the next match.
Over the next few innings, the Scouts and Farriers continued to battle the conditions and swapped low tallies with the rain starting back up. By the eighth inning, the Scouts of Stewart’s Creek led the Farriers 13-6 and the sky looked as if it were its duty to conquer both clubs by the end of the match. As the thunder rolled, the rain poured and both clubs were sent into another minor delay, but the match had provided such pageant that many of those in attendance remained. With only one and a half innings left to play, the clubs decided to make do and finish the game instead of give in to the rain that continued to muddy the playing grounds.
Covered in mud, both clubs gave a final fight and, although the offense was hindered by what was by then a waterlogged base ball, the defensemen for the Scouts were able to keep the ball from slipping away and the match was concluded with great defense by Slow Poke, Iron Belly, Uncle Jessie, and an exciting sliding catch by Dutch in the shallow right garden. The Scouts prevailed over the Farriers—and Mother Nature—16-9.
Looking ahead, the Scouts will next play the early game on 3rd May at Carnton Plantation. They look to take on the Distillers of the Highland Rim at 12:00 noon. The club will need the extra time to prepare themselves for the next match, as many of them are probably still soaking in a hot bath.
*All photos courtesy of Joelle Platz
20 April, 2015 – The Rutherford Herald