Falcons season ends with a dramatic game, decided in extra innings.

Falcons season ends with a dramatic game, decided in extra innings.

The Falcons played their final game of the 2023 National Baseball League season. It ended with yet another heartbreaking loss in extra innings but the team undoubtedly gave everything to end the season on a high as an audience from around the world watched the live stream on YouTube.

Their opponents were the London Capitals who were already guaranteed a place in the Playoffs having secured third place in the regular season standings behind the Mets and the Arrows.

A few days before the game the Falcons received the bad news from the British Baseball Federation that there are no available dates to re-schedule the two rained out games versus Sheffield Bruins and they will not be played. This implied that the team from Hemel Hempstead was eliminated.

The Caps were in control from start to finish in the first game of this doubleheader as starting pitcher Masa Hashiguchi was dominant again.  This was his ninth win of the season giving him an impressive ERA of 3.69 for the year.

Capitals vs Falcons – game one box scores

With the Playoffs out of their reach, most teams would have started thinking about the off-season, but the Herts Falcons were not ready to pack their bags yet.

(Photo by Tony Small)

Starting on the mound for them was Alex Deacon and he had another quality start allowing only 3 runs over his 5 innings of work, striking out 6 batters. He was also among the top performers in the Herts offense, going 3-for-4 with 2 RBI. Matt Moran, Phil Clark and Tyler Cote also contributed with 2 hits each. Cote was called-up from the club’s Triple-A team, the Herts Cardinals, and he impressed offensively and defensively.

The game was streamed live on YouTube thanks to the fantastic coverage by Journey Sports Media crew. Those who tuned in were invited to vote for the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the game. Falcons player-manager, Cris Hiche, received the highest number of votes, closely followed by Alex Deacon. Hiche spectacular diving catch in centerfield to add to his outstanding batting performance (2-4, 2B) must have played a part when those votes were cast.

The visitors from Hertfordshire took a 6-3 lead into the final inning but the Capitals produced a dramatic comeback scoring 3 runs to take the game into extra innings.

The Falcons scored 2 in the top of the 8th inning but the Londoners came back again. A triple from former Falcon, Will Zucker, and then a single by Pete Wiedmann drove in the 3 runs they needed to win with a final score of 9-8.

Capitals vs Falcons – game two box scores

This is proving to be the story of the season for the Herts Falcons. In fact this game was almost identical to the opening game of the season when the Capitals again came back to tie the game in the final inning and win it in extra innings.

The players and coaching staff will probably by disappointed to end the season 4 games back from the Playoff zone, but this was the first season back in the NBL for the Falcons and all those who saw them in action this season will agree that this young squad has an enormous potential.  They will most certainly be climbing up the NBL standings in the coming years if they can realize that potential.