Jun 11, 2014

Week 5: Uncontrollable Runs (Twin Cities)

Well it took awhile for me to get back on my feet, but the Uncontrollable Runs have finally hired me back as their team beat writer. I have a lot to cover today, including previous championship recaps, roster adjustments, new coaching schemes, as well as the inevitable "dynasty" murmurs beginning to take place. In now 3 seasons, the Uncontrollable Runs have hoisted 2 championship cups (1 miniature and 1 cardboard...), as well as the more important Flip Cup Championship last fall. While the team has changed slightly throughout the past few years, one constant remains: a championship caliber output.

2014 Roster:

Tommy Zimbo - P
Freeman - C
Rachael - 1B
Liz - 2B
Hield - 3B
Nicole - SS
Grant - LF
Hannah - LCF
Simon - CF
Andy - RCF
Walden - RF

Coaching Staff:
Mosey - Coach
Mickey - Captain
Marcus - Trainer
Lucy - Legal Counsel
Megan - Fireball
Jackie - Instigator
Shannon - World Traveler
Cory - Drinker

This Summer, the team looks to continue dumping runs early, having either starting ace Tommy Muscles or Craig take the lead off spot. Leading off has been something new for Grant this season, with injuries (vacations) giving him the opportunity to step forward. And Greg hasn't missed out on his opportunity to shine:

"We've been trying to develop a new striking technique, that allows for maximum contact on the ball," Coach Mosey said, "unfortunately that swing hasn't come to fruition yet, but the season is still early, and we are confident in the promise the kid has shown."

Unfortunately since the quote was taken, Tommy Tough Nuts has returned from hiatus and found himself once again at the top of the order.

Early season victories led to complacency for the Runs, as they let what looked like another undefeated regular season slip away from their hands, in an eye opening bad loss to Booz On First. The team clearly noticed that Booz On First chose to take the maroon jersey color this year in hopes of copying the winning ways of the Runs of old. It was obvious that some of the newcomers maybe didn't realize the full effort it will take each week to achieve perfection. Combine that with the unfortunate relative sobriety this season has brought on thanks to the full time efforts of the Minneapolis Police, and the team let laziness get the best of them. Luckily at the bar afterward, the Runs let em have it with a quick route in flip cup, redeeming partial pride. Team Drinker Cory was unavailable for comments after the 9 round battle.

Former reliable 2 Gingers supporter, Liz, has turned herself into a reliable 2B dancer after each catch, earning her multiple player of the game awards. Unfortunately due to her loss of initial position, this award no longer comes with a shot of 2 Gingers, the finest of all whiskeys. Said Liz after her most recent catch: "You can't (*expletive*) stop this!" Liz then proceeded to dance in a style reminiscent of the 70s.

The Uncontrollable Runs came into this season with a new strategy, enforced by the Captain (except when losing), which was welcomed with open arms by the team (except the Coach). The strategy: swing away and have fun. Known more for their elusive base running, speed, and aggressive competitiveness, the Runs approached this season with a more laid back style. It has worked for the most part so far, but we will see how long it continues...

After the Week 4 loss, the Uncontrollable Runs (3-1) entered Week 5 facing off against Balls & Dolls (3-1). This would prove to be a true test for the Runs, trying to put last week's embarrassment behind them, and get the season back on track. Would a Week 5 loss, moving them to 3-2, be enough to stem a coaching change and loss of the C on Mickey's chest? Luckily, these questions were left unanswered as the Uncontrollable Runs found some defense, as the previously high scoring foes were held to 1 run in a 4-1 victory. While the top of the order struggled immensely at bat, the rest of the team found ways to round the bases when necessary, but more importantly, they held their ground when it mattered.

With 2 outs and the bases loaded, one of the Balls & Dolls more accurate kickers stepped up to the plate. As fans rose to their feet, the pitch count grew. Would Tom be able to finish out the game? Drinker and Fireball debated this amidst shots and beers. Just then, a shot from Balls & Dolls sent a spinning red ball directly towards short stop. If this top spin dropped, surely it would score at least 3 runs. Nicole recounted what went through her head, as the ball came soaring at her: "My focus was zen-like. I was like King Leonidas, focused on Xerxes. Nothing was stopping my hands (and knees) from catching that ball." Nicole would later be cheered on at the bar as she took a birthday/player of the game shot.

This upcoming week, The Runs will be without 9 of their players, as 7 of them apparently felt that some festival was more important than team morale and winning, but the Captain is confident in the ability of the others to overcome this set back and rise to victory.

In Week 7, look for the Runs to bring back the Slip N Slide, as they take on The Rapists of America.

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