It was Brant Taxi night at Arnold Anderson Stadium on Friday July 27th as the Brantford Red Sox hosted Toronto on a beautiful night for baseball (images courtesy of Crystal Young Photography).
Called to the mound for Brantford was obviously Euclides Leyer who seemingly starts every home game.
Was this game different from the others? Well, Leyer had a a no-hitter through four innings. In the fourth he finally allowed a measly infield hit. Unfortunately for Brantford, that runner would become an issue.
Later that half-inning, Brantford’s DeAndre Asbury-Heath was forced to make an outstanding diving catch making like Kevin Pillar (but in rightfield) where his body was parallel to the ground about two feet in the air. He made the grab at full extension on the line shot but the runner tagged up at third and scored easily while Asbury-Heath was still picking himself off the grass.
In the seventh inning that beautiful night turned a corner and showers took over. P.A. announcer Norm Tolhurst reported that the rain could’ve been much much worse (rain pictured toward bottom of the page with Brantford at-bat).
“The storm split itself at the Grand River and we only got the tail of it,” he reported from his trusty phone app.
Teams were lucky that any wet-spell didn’t occur earlier in the day so the City of Brantford could deem the field unplayable for what seems like the tenth time.
Brantford had a great opportunity in their half of the seventh inning developed from a two-out rally where they loaded the bases for designated hitter Nick Burdett (above; photo courtesy of Crystal Young Photography). He lined a shot and fans thought Brantford had taken the lead! But unfortunately, the shot went right to Toronto second-baseman Grant Tamane and the Maple Leafs averted the crisis.
Leyer went eight plus yielding all of one run on just two hits by the time he left the field. Another quality outing for Leyer (below, putting some umph on a pitch; photo courtesy of Crystal Young Photography), but unfortunately he’s not going to win this game either. The best he could hope for was a No Decision if Brantford tied it up or took the lead as Stefan Strecker came on in relief.
Again, in both the eighth and ninth innings, Brantford got a runner in scoring position, but could not cash either one of them in. They stranded runners in scoring position the last four consecutive innings for 12 runners total left on base. Brantford could not get it done and they fall to Toronto.
Brantford at 12-19, play in London Tuesday night, while they host Hamilton Wednesday, London Friday, and welcome those same Hamilton Cardinals to Arnold Anderson Stadium Saturday night.
The end of July the Red Sox saw the field five times in seven days to close out the month.
August sees the Red Sox play six games in eight days to close out the season. So a playoff push will have to happen now if the Red Sox are going to make one. The boys have to come together. They are off to a good start as they defeated Burlington 9-2 Saturday and Hamilton 17-6 Sunday.
The road warriors must show these good graces at home for the Brantford fans to crack the playoffs.
And in the playoffs anything can happen.