SILVER SPRING, MD – It was a beautiful summer night at Blair Stadium. The Takoma Thunderbolts hosted Bethesda Big Train in the Cal Ripken Collegiate League Championship Series – a true rivalry match of neighboring cities. It was also a rare finals appearance for the Thunderbolts, which brought out many new spectators.
“I got a random email on the listserv about the championship game, so I thought I’d go,” stated Doug Hall. “I cannot wait to celebrate the end of the long baseball season.”
It turned out to be a close, exciting game. Both teams battled the heat in an exciting back-and-forth contest. A brawl almost broke out over a pitcher hitting a batter. A two-run homerun tied the game in the 5th. A controversial call by the umpire at home got the players fired up in the 7th.
Unfortunately, hardly anyone was paying attention.
Most of the audience spent their time on their phones watching the Democratic Primary debates. The Blair High School Junior Varsity baseball team spent most of the game playing soccer in an adjacent field. Even the Thunderbolts coach wanted nothing to do with the game, ejecting himself after arguing with the umpire.
“I’m usually bored watching my kid’s Little League baseball games,” stated Rick Sanchez, who attended his first Thunderbolts game tonight. “I was hoping that watching players at a higher level would provide more action. Nope.”
One resident, Mica Bevington, was desperately trying to leave the game early, but couldn’t, as someone had blocked her car in. “Looks like I’ll be stuck here until the game ends,” she said as her caravan of five kids began crying.
When the final out was made in the 9th, sealing a 6-3 victory for Bethesda, the fans full-on sprinted towards the exit.
“It was nuts, but probably one of the more exciting parts of the game,” stated Jenny Parsons. “I’m really looking forward to sitting in my car for a long time waiting to get out of the parking lot.”
Technically, the series is now tied one game apiece, with the final tie-breaker set for tomorrow night at Bethesda Big Train’s home field, Shirley Povich Stadium. Asked if he plans to attend the final game, Sanchez replied, “Wait, people actually do this more than once?!”