Thursday night the Rockland Boulders hosted Phillippe Aumont and the Ottawa Champions. Aumont, the former 11th overall draft pick in the 2007 MLB Draft doubles as the Champions’ ace and pitching coach. He was on the mound against the first place Boulders looking to throw his second no hitter of the season.
The Boulders on the other hand had different ideas, roughing up Aumont for 5 -runs in his seven innings of work. With the game tied up at 4-4 in the bottom of the seventh inning, former CanAm League MVP Joe Maloney came up to the plate and delivered as he’s done so often in the past. Maloney took a 2-1 fastball and deposited over the short porch in right field for an opposite field solo shot.
Maloney’s homerun in the bottom of the seventh looked to be the game winner as the Boulders took the lead into the top of the 9th with closer Jon Velasquez on the mound. After surrendering a leadoff single Velasquez retired the next two batters with ease and then got Ryan Brockett to pop up to left field where Joe Maloney botched the easy pop up and with two outs the tying run scored all the way from first base. Just as Maloney gave the Boulders the lead, he took it away with only one out away to secure the victory.
After the Boulders managed to get runners on first and second with one out, Marcus Nidiffer grounded into an inning ending double play. The Champions were then held scoreless in the top half of the 10th inning which gave the Boulders another opportunity to win the game.
After two quick outs, Daniel Arribas drew a 2 out walk which brought newcomer Mikael Mogues up to the plate. In only his 16th game for the Boulders, Mogues came up to the plate and demolished a fastball well over the right field porch onto the bridge for an emphatic walk off winner.
After the game Mogues described the at bat, “I was just looking for a good pitch to hit and tried to do what I do when I got it.”
Mogues, who just recently graduated from Seton Hall University spoke on his journey to Rockland, “A couple months ago I was playing college baseball then graduated with my degree in journalism and then after not being selected in the draft I turned to independent ball.”
Mogues gives the credit to former Boulder Giuseppe Papaccio for getting him in contact with the Boulders, Papaccio was his assistant coach in Seton Hall this past season.
The Boulders winning ways are being influenced by both current and former ball players and this ball club is certainly having a lot of fun this season.
Friday night the Boulders are looking to create a memory of a lifetime for a young baseball fan as 4 -year old Luciano DiMarco will be throwing out the first pitch. DiMarco, who is developmentally delayed, was verbally abused by a Yankee fan in a recent trip to the stadium.