Etcetera - 08/17/11

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Brenden Koch has been chronicling Walla Walla Sweets baseball games, often catching the action while in the stands at Borleske Stadium.

He and son Dante were at their 11th game of the season on Friday when the unbelievable happened.

Brenden posted his game highlight on Facebook and graciously gave me leave to share it:

First off, the Sweets took game 1 of their playoff series, 9-4 over the Wenatchee AppleSox. "The Sweets mashed 16 hits on the evening, with Ryan Richardson essentially owning the opponents after a shaky first two batters. The series now moves to Wenatchee for a best-of-two, (which will really be a best-of-one, since the Sweets are going to win the first game.) GO SWEETS!," Brenden said.

Then an amazing thing happened while the AppleSox batted in the top of the ninth inning.

"A family sitting in front of us had just gotten up to leave, and was walking behind the visitors' dugout," Brenden wrote. "The mother, blessed with a toddler, was toting a large diaper bag. An (AppleSox) batter hit a pop foul that descended toward the dugout, just clearing it. The ball, perhaps steered by angels, fell neatly into the woman's diaper bag as she was walking. 'Twas the best catch I've ever seen at a baseball game -- and she wasn't even trying."

There was some confusion as to where the ball touched down, Brenden said.

The woman stood beside a trash can behind the AppleSox dugout, "and from the sound the ball made when it landed, it could've fallen either into the garbage or her diaper bag," Brenden said.

"I was sure I'd seen it go into the diaper bag, but several people started rooting around in the garbage while the lady checked her bag. Sure enough, after rifling through her bag for a few moments she triumphantly pulled out the ball.

"Naturally, everyone who saw these events began to applaud the lady; the crowd continued applauding her as she and her family made their way in front of the grandstands toward the stadium gates. Talk about a grand exit!"

A College Place resident, Brenden played softball, football and basketball in younger years. The sports he's regularly into now are disc golf, Frisbee catch and baseball with Dante.

Taking Dante to Sweets games reminds Brenden of when he and his Grandpa went to American Legion baseball games in Roseburg, Ore., when he was Dante's age.

"I discuss baseball strategy with Dante. We try to predict what the batter will do, and what pitches the pitcher might throw. My wife and daughter even came out to two games this year, including when the WWCS sang the anthems."

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at annieeveland@wwub.com or afternoons at 526-8313.

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