Softball 2002

  The Flames lighting the heat. The ball is in the air, waiting for another futile flail of the bat. As is typical, most opponent swings produce no fruit. Not when the Flames are cooking the opposition.

  One of the first games of the 2002 season. The bungelator is at bat with a runner on first. Coach Mom is handling third base duties.

Nice field, huh? I played in a quarry with boulders and weeds and a haybale as a backstop.

  Third base coach scrutinizing the defense of the opponents. Nothing gets by - no signals, no passed balls, nothing. This guy sees all, moves all. He is the conveyer belt of girls softball, reeling in the runs. Anytime he sees a flame on second, he turns on. This machine has the eyes of an eagle, the mind of an Intel, and the response of a titanium dome tweeter. He brings in the runs.

  A post game meeting - coaches, players all join in to discuss lessons of the days conquest. Win or loose, you'll always see these embers glowing long after the last out. Forging strategy for the coming weeks by cutting, etching the lessons of innings just past into indelible reactions for innings to come.

  Here's the internal power source of the Flames - the Pitching Staff. 100mph of combined power directed toward unsuspecting victims of the bat.

  The team after some stimulating, pre game comments from the crack coaching staff. Their feet are light with excitement, their heads held higher than the highest Texas Leaguer.

  First year rookies called up from the Flame's farm team, the Lighters (actually the Sabers, though the Lighters would have been pretty funny if it were true). These guys played together on the Sabers and moved up together to learn fast pitch from the veterans of the team.

  Coach and the third base glove picking up some practice balls before the storm. The girls coach and play for the Flames, the 10 to 13 year old league across the mountain. So far, they are 2 and 5, as they are still working out some positional details.

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