For what seemed like an eternity, the Long Island Ducks and York Revolution played a “Long and Winding Road” last night at Bethpage Park in Central Islip. It was baseball with a touch of “Beatlemania,” that featured an epic battle in game one of the best of five championship series, for the Independent Atlantic League title.
With balls flying “Here, There and Everywhere,” the “Revolution” prevailed for an 8-7 win. These two teams seem to be evenly matched with both squads playing hard and gritty. It was a “Helter Skelter” type game with many twists and turns.
There were three lead changes, two ties and eighteen hits. All in a regular nine inning game.
The contest lasted four hours and eighteen minutes, with the Ducks using six pitchers and York going through seven, including their ace closer, lefty Chase Huchingson, who looks like Chris Sale on the mound. “You Can’t Do That” if you want to come out on top in a short series. Going through all those pitchers in the first game of a short series could come back to haunt one of these teams. Huchingson has an ERA of just 1.36 and teams are hitting only .204 against him. Needless to say, he shut the door on the flock and the Quackers went down like a “Yellow Submarine” in an “Octopus’s Garden” as York now takes a one game lead in the series.
Ducks starter, Matt Larkins, just didn’t have it tonight. His pitches were up in the zone and he lacked command. The right hander had a miserable line as he went five innings, gave up seven hits and four runs with three walks and one home run, an opposite field shot off the bat of DH Michael Burgess . With both teams totaling numbers like 20 walks and 18 runners left on base total, it was an ugly night for the announced crowd of 3,026.
After giving up only one hit over four and a third innings, York’s big righty starter Jay Gause, looked like “The Fool on the Hill” as he let the Ducks back in the game. Gause walked four and gave up three runs. After the right hander was removed he went out to coach first base and proceeded to get in a heated argument with first base umpire Richard Katz over balls and strikes. Gause could have just “Let It Be.” but he was given the boot. It looked like he was trying to give his team a spark and it worked because they took the lead back shortly after he was tossed. Gause was later seen in the picnic area walking around like a “Nowhere Man”. It was that kind of a night.
The Ducks will need to “Act Naturally” and “Come Together” as a team to get back into this series.The feeling in the clubhouse after the loss was one of “We Can Work It Out.” The series continues tomorrow night for game two and then moves to York, Pennsylvania for games three and if needed four and five. My gut feeling is that the Ducks can “Get Back” into this series and get it done.