Column: Ain't no rally like a baseball rally
By BRANDON HURLEY
Monday’s captivating senior night rally and win by the Greene County baseball team in extra innings is just one of the many reasons why baseball and softball comebacks are the best in sports.
Scoring runs in basketball are quite common, you may even hear people call it the “game of runs.” In football, a team can score 21 straight points, but the touchdowns could be so spread out that it no longer feels like a run. And there’s definitely no rallies in soccer or golf, so no need to even discuss that here.
The most exciting part, to me, is the unlikelihood of keeping a rally going, which means every pitch is intense and pressure packed.
In baseball, getting a hit three times out of every 10 at bats is a pretty good average, so stringing several hits and walks together in a row is quite impressive.
The pressure on both sides, on the batter and the pitcher is immense. The pitcher just wants to get out of the inning, but doesn’t want to make another mistake, and the batter wants to be the hero, but also hopes to not let his or her teammates down by ending the rally.
Rallies have no time limit, which makes them all the more exciting – the players, fans and coaches have no idea when it will come to an end, which is the true definition of “edge-of-your-seat” entertainment.
When you can put together a two-out rally at that, that’s when the party really starts.
And who doesn’t love the “Rally Cap?” Personally, I’m more of a fan of just turning my hat backwards, but many people take it to the extreme and turn their hat inside out. Whatever works for them, I guess.
I vaguely remember the greatest comeback I was ever apart of.
If my memory serves me correct, it was about 14 or so years ago in the eighth grade. We were playing a summer league game against some town I cannot begin to recall. We were in a tournament (What tournament, I have no recollection) and we were facing elimination. We were trailing by nine runs in the bottom of the final inning. Nine runs is almost an insurmountable lead at any point in a baseball game, but down that many in the final inning only to come back? That’s just crazy talk.
But somehow, we did it. Our team just kept hitting. I even got in on the action, stroking a single (don’t know if it scored a run or not) into right field to load the bases to keep the rally going. What made it even better was the fact the very next batter crushed a grand slam to tie the game. I was even on base as the fantastic come back was completed!
In the grand scheme of things, the game couldn’t have been any more meaningless, but for some reason, that rally has always stuck with me, and it may be one of the reasons I gravitate toward a late inning rally so much.
I’m sure as a pitcher a rally is beyond demoralizing, but an offensive rally excites the whole team, down to the last bench player, the coaches and the fans.
Brandon Hurley is the sports editor of the Jefferson Herald. For tips, column ideas or notice of errors, you can reach him by email firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @BrandonJHurley.