Softball: The Stoners vs. The Man

A Dow Jones spy reports that The Wall Street Journal's softball team is taking on the lovable losers of High Times tomorrow morning in Central Park. North Meadow, Field 2, 11 a.m., for all you fans.

"I'm told that during the last game [which the WSJers won], the High Times players were acting as though the game was some ideological battle — as if the WSJ newsroom is filled with a bunch of neocons, which most of us are far too poor to be," our spy reports. "What a bunch of morons," the spy sniffs. "They don't call it dope for nothing."

By that standard, of course, most of the Journal staffers we know — including, frankly, the spy — are dopes, too.

We hope to have results Monday morning (hint, hint). And there's a recap of that last, Manichean struggle after the jump.

Friday, June 10, 2005 11:29 AM
CENTRAL PARK-Just days after the Supreme Court snuffed the medical use of marijuana, the Wall Street Journal softballers rattled the world of pot smokers for the second time in a week, extinguishing a last-inning rally and handing the High Times Bonghitters a loss in what has become the most anticipated game on the summer playbill.

The Journalistas plated eight runs to the tokers' six, and fielded a defense that allowed not a single extra-base hit. A rematch is scheduled late next month.

Trailing 1-0, the Journal 10 tied the game in the top of the second off the bat of Advertising's Royce Hall, who slapped a single into the outfield that scored Mike Siconolfi. An inning later, the WSJ knotted the game again, 2-2, when Mr. Siconolfi, never one to shy away from base-running controversy, got himself caught in run down trying to stretch a single into a double. As the Bonghitters amused themselves with a 10-throw, two-minute run down attempting to book an out, they forgot about a WSJ's Jay Colon on third, who scored.

And, boom goes the dynamite, Mr. Hall put the writers ahead for good in the top of third with a solo homer to left that sailed well over the head of a fielder already playing exceedingly deep.

Throughout the game, WSJ batters scattered hits around the field but finally uncorked an extended rally in the sixth inning, plating four runs for a 7-2 lead. The Bonghitters added three in the sixth and the good guys tallied one the top of the seventh, and as the bottom of the last inning began, the WSJ was holding onto an 8-5 lead.

The Bonghitters' last at-bat unfolded in dramatic fashion. Trailing by three-never much of a lead against the High Times hitters-the Bonghitters batted themselves into position to win the game. They loaded the bases with no outs and scored a run to trim the WSJ's scoreboard advantage to two. Then, like the Supreme Court quashing dreams of tokers everywhere, the left side of the WSJ infield-Personal Journal's Jeff Opdyke at shortstop and Weekend's Amir Efrati at third-killed the Bonghitter rally.

With bases loaded, Opdyke turned a double play, diving to snag a ball that was quickly dying behind the pitcher's mound, then rolled onto his back to toss the ball to Tim Hanrahan and pick off the runner at second. Two batters later, Efrati wisely played tight along the third base line for one of High Time's power hitters. Reaching across his body to the right, he snagged a shot rocketing down the third base line, then trotted to the bag to force out the runner coming from second, recording the third out and securing the W for the WSJ.

Throughout the game Randy Price pitched remarkably and helped his own cause by recording several outs, including a double play. Jay Colon, Hanrahan, Ron Winslow, Aaron Lucchetti and Greg Zuckerman all brought batting power to the plate that helped push across runs.

"I'm really proud of the team," said third-year coach, Kara Scannell. "They've come together as a group this season, which has been difficult since losing some key players."

The Journal is now 2-0 on the season and has a chance to post its third win in eight days when it returns to home-field play on Saturday morning against the Daily News. Game time is 11 a.m. Tickets are still available.