Oct. 30, 2012
SAN DIEGO, Calif. - Tinker to Evers to Chance is the most famous double-play combination in baseball history, but certainly not the most colorful.
Distinguishing itself in that regard Tuesday night at Tony Gwynn Stadium was Court Jester to Little Bo Peep to The Hunter.
It was the SDSU baseball team's fourth annual Halloween Game, and you needed more than a scorecard to tell the players in the five-inning intrasquad game that ended in a 1-1 tie.
Throwing the ball around the infield at the start were Court Jester Danny Sheehan at third, Little Bo Peep Tim Zier at second and The Hunter Tyler Sapp at first base -- as well as shortstop Evan Potter as one of the Duck Dynasty guys.
Pitchers Justin Hepner, Travis Pitcher and Bryan Crabb and student manager Cooper Sholder joined Potter in Duck Dynasty garb. A duck call added to the authenticity (note to Coach Gwynn: Could these be given to outfielders to call for a fly ball?).
In the first inning, The Tourist Tanner Reibenspies (complete with fanny pack) singled up the middle for the game's first hit. He was rescued by Lifeguard Philip Walby -- not that The Tourist was in distress -- as a pinch runner. Gladiator Greg Allen followed with a single -- the first of his three hits in the game -- to right field before the inning ended.
Gladiators were out in force, with Justin Gheorghe and Steven Pallares joining Allen in similar attire. It must have been comforting for left-hander Collin Orellana, who took the mound at one point as Caesar. All hail.
Usually when pitchers bring a different look to the mound it's because they're left- or right-handed, side-armers or submariners, thumbers or flamethrowers. On this occasion, it was because one starting pitcher (Dylan McDonald) looked like Willie Nelson and the other (Zack Oakley) resembled a Cowgirl.
Two of the more popular costumes were worn by Banana T.J. Kendzora and Snoop(y) Dog Spencer Thornton, although their popularity may have been tied to the candy they handed out to fans in the stands. Later, Michael Cederoth proved that even a Caveman could hand out candy, although American Flag Mike RoBards provided assistance.
Catcher Seby Zavala was dressed as The Gardner, although Zavala was nowhere to be found when it came time to do the field after the game. It is believed he had to leave early for an agronomy class.
A wild pitch by The Grinch Mitch Bluman scored the game's first run in the top of the third. The Grinch, who we now know is a left-hander, came right back with a strikeout of Urkel Avondre Bollar, who had doubled earlier in the game.
Pitcher Ethan Miller was spotted at one point along the first-base line disguised as Ace Ventura, who would have been better off investigating next door at the Aquaplex.
Meanwhile, teammate Brad Haynal was along the third-base line dressed in pink as a Fairy. Haynal did not specify what kind of fairy, although if it was Tooth Fairy, then the recommendation would be to check under the pillows of those Duck Dynasty guys.
Freshman Mark Seyler is a pitcher, but he made hay in right field as a Farm Boy.
A group of young fans behind the plate was especially drawn to three Powder Puff Girls -- Jake Romanski wearing blue, Jonathan Spirk in green and Ryan Doran in red -- who turned more than a few heads.
Of course, they had nothing on CJ Saylor, who showed surprising power for a French Maid when he doubled off the wall in the third inning.
The game was knotted 1-1 in the bottom of the fourth inning after 80s Workout Girl Tyler France drove in Border Patrol Agent Matt Munoz. Cody Thompson also was dressed as an 80s Workout Girl, although it was not determined if both girls work out at the same gym.
Brandon Thomas, dressed as Carlton from the Fresh Prince of Bel Air, finished up on the mound in the fifth inning. Carlton wasn't bothered a bit by the sweater tied around his neck, getting Urkel on a foul fly to third base en route to closing out the game.
Dressed as a biker, the sports information department's Dave Kuhn was the toughest looking public address announcer/scorekeeper ever seen around these parts. Kuhn left moments after the final pitch. Something about his Harley being double parked.
The event ended with singing of the SDSU Fight Song. Associate head coach Mark Martinez, dressed as Kenny Chesney, should have been the lead singer but chose to provide background vocals.
Although neither Leaser nor Valenzuela will be nearly as impressed with themselves flexing in front of a mirror out of costume.
It was fun while it lasted.