|Scott Arthurs (W)||7.0||5||0||0||0||10||0||3.16|
|Tony Elliott (L)||4.0||10||8||7||1||5||0||7.41|
Arthur's and Bucket Hold Off PiratesUpdated Friday June 22, 2018 by J Biggs.
Many young baseball players spent hours practicing on the field, under the watchful eyes of parents and coaches. Other young players dedicated their free time to honing the finer points of the game while alone with improvised equipment. Some painted strikezones on the side of barns, others threw into spare tires, and other pitched into empty buckets. The story of one Mudcats pitcher is a story of a young man and his bucket.
Before the Mudcats game Sunday afternoon, the Mudcats starting pitcher Scott Arthurs reflected on his journey of achieving his dream of playing in the Poco Men’s Baseball League. Arthurs shared his ‘bucket pitcher’s creed’ that he would say to himself as his young blistered hands pitched ball after ball into his bucket.
This is my bucket. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
My bucket is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master the strike zone. My bucket has never dropped a strike.
Without me, my bucket is useless. Without my bucket, I am useless. I must pitch to my bucket true. I must pitch straighter than my enemy who is trying to outpitch me.
My bucket and I know what the count is in the game, how many pitches I’ve thrown, how many balls and how many strikes. We know it is the strikes that count.
My bucket is human, even as I, because it is my life. Thus, I will learn my bucket as a brother. I will learn its weaknesses, its strength, its parts, and its accessories. I will keep my bucket clean and ready. We will become part of each other. We will…
Before I pitch, I swear this creed. My bucket and I are the defenders of the game.
With Arthurs set to pitch to his trusty bucket, several Mudcats opted to play rather than sit in the stands like last game. Unfortunately for the Mudcats, league rules disqualified Arthur’s bucket as a roster player leaving the Mudcats with only eight players and incurring an automatic out. However, as Arthurs pitched to his trusty bucket, the seven other Mudcat hitters opted to sit on the bench and prepare for their at-bats. A move that would pay dividends.
With the Mudcats up 2-0 in the third inning, Morrison continued to showcase his new-found power hitting with his second “just about” homerun in as many games. In a post-game interview, Morrison said he is one “just about” homerun away from breaking his single season “just about” homerun record. “It’s best not to think about it” said Morrison, at which point manager Chris Smith stepped handing Morrison a smokie, “I’m positive he’ll break the record” grinned Smith.
No-one benefited more from sitting on the bench preparing for at-bats than Nick Street. Street was playing his first game since coming off the DL. Street had plenty of time to get his timing down and was seen hitting off a tee in the batting cage. In the fourth inning with the Mudcats up 5-0, Street was rewarded with his first homerun of the year, a towering two run blast over the left field fence. Tensions rose when Street returned to the dugout and confronted Morrison saying “I don’t need to eat smokies to hit homeruns”. However, all would soon be well as the Mudcats sailed to a 9-0 victory over the Pirates. Arthurs pitched a strong 10k game and credited his bucket for calling a masterful game behind the plate.
Game Notes: Mudcats utility player Craig Valach did not dress this game further increasing speculation that the Mudcats are actively trying to trade the player. Rumours are swirling that Arthur’s bucket has a younger brother bucket that is set to break into the league and the Mudcats are looking to open up a roster spot for the younger bucket.