Thursday, August 4, 2005

Catfish: Head, Bread, Sex Change, and a Win

Go Catfish!The Catfish opened a short home stand against my former favorite team, the Savannah Sand Gnats (Nationals) tonight, winning 5-0. I used to take my son, my daughter, and various nephews to Sand Gnats games years ago when I lived in that region of Georgia. I'm a loyal Catfish fan now, but it's still difficult cheering against my old team.


Tonight, the Catfish gave away Tommy Lasorda bobble heads to fans. The wife and I both got one. We met Mr. Lasorda last year when he came to one of the Catfish series and sat behind us. I really liked him. And we are happy to have one of those silly bobble heads.


It wasn't announced ahead of time, but Sara Lee gave away loaves of bread after the game. They've introduced a new line of bread and picked this method of promoting it. I'm thinking tomorrow ... sammiches.

Sex Change

If you've followed closely, you may know that the young man who performed as "Hook," the mascot of the Columbus Catfish is no longer doing that. He still has his gig as the Columbus Cottonmouths mascot, "Boomer," but he's no longer with the 'Fish. And, the wife and I were sorry to hear things didn't work out between him and the team.

Turns out, though, that the Catfish did the best thing they could have done under the circumstances and re-hired the young lady who had performed as "Hook" prior to The Columbus Mascot. Yes, we'll miss him, but we did like her, too. Their characters are different, to be sure, but they both are professionals and do good jobs. It's like, what do you want, steak or lobster?

Although we've never had the pleasure to meet either out of costume, I've spoken to others who have, and they have nothing but good words about both young people. Catfish fans are lucky to have such talent performing for them, in the past and going forward.

A Win

Dan Batz played tonight, and had another great game in the field, and a good game at the plate. He was 2-for-4 with a three-run homer. And, he had family in town to see his great performance. The wife and I are very happy for him, and are proud to be his sponsor.

Lucas May didn't play tonight. He's nursing an injured shoulder. He did coach first base for eight innings tonight (missing the second). It was great to see Skipper find a way to allow Luke to contribute even though he's injured. He also has family in town and perhaps they'll get to see him play before they head back out of town.

More on the game from the Columbus Catfish:

Three Pitchers Combine on Three-Hit Shutout in 5-0 Catfish Win
RHP Chris Malone Fires Seven Innings of Two-Hit Baseball, Earning Ninth Win of 2005

COLUMBUS, GA — Catfish RHP Chris Malone allowed just two hits without giving up a run in seven innings tonight as the Fish took the opener of a four-game series with the Savannah Sand Gnats 5-0 at Golden Park. Malone gave up just two singles in seven innings, walking three and fanning seven, earning his ninth victory of the season and helping to combine on his second shutout. RHP Brian Akin tossed a scoreless eighth and RHP Steve Nelson struck out two in a 1-2-3 ninth to preserve the eighth shutout win of the season for Columbus. 1B Dan Batz finished 2-4 with a three-run HR in the fourth and 3B Blake DeWitt had three hits in the Catfish 5-0 win. The Catfish take over sole possession of second place at 19-18 in the second half (47-59 overall) as Savannah drops to 19-20 in the second half (50-57 overall).

Columbus took a 1-0 lead in the third against Savannah RHP Chris Goodman on 2B Brandon Carter's RBI groundout. In the fourth with two runners aboard, Batz drove a 1-2 pitch from Goodman over the left-field wall to make it 3-0 Columbus. Batz's round-tripper was just his third of the season and was his first at Golden Park. The Catfish added a run in the fifth when DeWitt drove home his team leading 55th run of the season with a single to right.

Malone stranded runners on base in the third, fourth, and fifth, but retired the side in order in the sixth and finished his night with a strikeout in a scoreless seventh. Akin stranded the bases full in the eighth, and Nelson fanned two in a perfect ninth. The Fish have won six of the last seven games with Savannah (all at Golden Park), and play for the 18th time this season tomorrow at 7:00 PM when RHP Dimas Reina (0-1, 3.48 ERA) takes the hill for the Catfish.

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