Rock Island Post 200 defeated longtime rival Moline Post 246 5-2 in the first Veterans Cup Challenge, but the real winner Wednesday was baseball in the Quad-Cities.
A very good crowd enjoyed a crisply played game in an hour and 51 minutes on a gorgeous evening at Douglas Park.
The folks from Friends of Douglas Park, led by Kevin Corrigan, put on quite a show, where memories grabbed the headlines over baseball thanks to Q-C legend Glen Cook at the microphone.
TJ Hoffman, in his first year as Post 200 coach, knew he had one thing he had to do on Wednesday.
“The first thing Gerry (Huiskamp, the longtime coach and manager of Post 200) told me was ‘Don’t lose to Moline,'” Hoffman said. “I’m sure I would have had a phone call from him if we didn’t win this one.”
Hoffman is pleased with a 5-1 start to his legion career. He previously coached with the Quad City A’s and then the Quad City Hitmen 15-16U teams.
“Right now, I am trying to learn the ropes and all the different rules,” Hoffman said. “Luckily, I had a lot of the Alleman kids with the A’s and a lot of these Rock Island kids with the Hitmen.
“We are off to a pretty good start, playing some very good baseball. Our pitching has been great, we’re hitting the ball and we’re playing solid defense.”
Rock Island got all three of those on Wednesday. Carson James, Brandt Samuelson and Khyri White combined for a six-hitter, with James picking up the win and White throwing a perfect seventh for the save.
The bats were also very good, knocking out 10 hits. Designated hitter Andrew Barrett had three singles and scored all three times, Chris McFarland had a single, a two-run double and a sacrifice fly and Erik Hoffman had a two-run double and an RBI single.
Post 200 took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on an RBI double by Erik Hoffman, then scored three in the third on two infield hits, a pop-fly single, a two-run double by McFarland and an RBI hit by Hoffman.
Post 246 (2-3-1) got a two-run single by Ben Monroe to cut the 4-0 lead in half and RI added an insurance run on a double by Barrett, a wild pitch and McFarland’s sacrifice fly.