Courier News Photo
Although the Flemington Neshanock opened their 2012 season last Saturday in Smithtown, Long Island, today marked the first match game between the two New Jersey vintage clubs - the Neshanock and their arch-rivals the dreaded Elizabeth Resolutes. Over the past two years the two clubs have evenly divided the season series so they are well matched.
Today's match was at TD Bank ball park in Bridgewater, the home of the Somerset Patriots of the independent Atlantic League. Playing at a modern field meant historical accuracy took a hit, but it gave all of us an on the field look at a modern ballpark which has its own appeal. The match itself lived up to Neshanock - Resolute standards with the Flemington club staging a three run, ninth inning rally to tie the game at 5-5. Elizabeth tallied once in the top of the 10th and the Neshanock had a man on third with one out, but couldn't bring him home so that Elizabeth drew first blood for 2012.
Below is the box score for the game using the format found in early 19th century newspapers. H.L. stands or hands lost or outs in modern parlance. The most interesting line in the box score belongs to Mark "Gaslight" Granieri, stalwart catcher of the Neshanock. Gaslight achieved one of Henry Chadwick's highest offensive goals - a "clear" score. Last season, I thought a clear score happened when a player scored a run every time he batted regardless of how he got on base - hit, walk or muff (error). Just recently, however, it has been suggested that a clear score occurred when a player got on base every time up regardless of how he got on base. Research in the Chadwick score books at the New York Public Library should clarify the question, but Gaslight met either standard as he got on base each time and also scored each time - so a very manly effort by the Flemington catcher.
The two clubs will meet again in two weeks on Sunday, May 6th at Ringwood State Park in Ringwood, NJ when the Neshanock will be out for revenge!