Javelinas Walk Off – Again!

After a day off yesterday, Logan O’Hoppe and Bryson Stott were back in the starting lineup today along with Simon Muzziatti. I was sitting in the first row when Logan bounded out of the dugout in the bottom of the first inning, bat in hand and greeted me “Good afternoon, Sir”. Man is this kid polite! His parents certainly raised him the right way. Although O’Hoppe didn’t get a hit today, he bookended two walks, one in the 1st and the last in the 10th, to keep his OPS high at .927.

On first base with two outs and a full count, Logan knew that he could get a jump because the first baseman wasn’t holding him on and there wouldn’t be any pickoff attempt. His heads-up base running enabled him to go from first to third a single to left field.

Although Logan wasn’t able to score, notice how he does a little groundskeeping of home plate at the end of the inning. After all, that is his domain.

Catching can be an adventure, and no one knows that better than O’Hoppe. Here, in a later at bat, he admires the opposing catcher (Maciver) battling the sun, roaming under his pop-up for the out.

One final observation about O’Hoppe today, lest you think I’m exaggerating about how polite he is. Heading to his on-deck spot he gets an unsolicited tip from once of the coaches that you can tell he doesn’t fully agree with. He acknowledges and appreciates the input, finishing with: “But I hear you, thank you.” The Fall League is an incredible yardstick as well as learning opportunity, and Logan appears to be making the most of the experience.

Yesterday I was blunt about the shortcomings of Logan’s teammate, Simon Muzziotti, and the coaches were in his ear frequently today. Muzzi came through in a big way, with two base hits, two RBI, and a nice running catch going full tilt from left field toward center. Great to see!

Baseball is so much about doing the little things right, and it was an at bat during which Muzziatti didn’t get a hit that searned him his share of “attaboys”. With runners on second and third and one out, he grounded out to the right side of the field, allowing the Padres’ Matt Batten to score.

Salt River Rafters’ fans, and in particular the legendary Susan, were in good spirits most of the game as the Tigers’ Garrett Hill and his mound mates gave up only one earned run through the first eight innings.

But the Javelinas tied the game with two runs in the 9th, extending it to extra innings. After the Rafters went ahead in the 10th, the resilient Javelinas came back with another two runs in the bottom frame for their second consecutive walk-off, pushing their record to 6-8 and inching their way closer to the .500 mark.

About Leonard J. Press, O.D., FAAO, FCOVD

Developmental Optometry is my passion as well as occupation. Blogging allows me to share thoughts in a unique visual style.
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