SEPTEMBER 8, 2003 GAME OF THE AGES

The Clovis Wheat Kings 2003 season was a near-success that saw them capture the Western division of the National League before losing to the eventual World Series champion Tempe Tempers in the first round of the playoffs. Clovis put together an impressive 106-56 season that left them 11 games ahead of their closest competitors the L.A. Riot.

The Wheat Kings enjoyed a well-balanced team that had strong pitching and a powerful offense. The pitching staff was equally as well balanced with a strong core of starters lead by Barry Zito and a strong bullpen anchored by Robb Nen. The offense was lead all season by veterans Magglio Ordonez and Luis Gonzalez who paced the Wheat Kings strong line-up to a team record 190 homeruns.

At no time during the season was Clovis’s strong offense more in evidence than the night of September 8. The Wheat Kings were in Mohawk Valley to play the Rangers in Wrigley field. The Wheat Kings were hoping to continue their 4 game win streak and put some more mileage between themselves and the Riots, who had lost earlier in the day to the Johnstown Johnnies. The stadium had something of a buzz as the Wheat Kings Greg Myers was in the starting line-up again after having blasted homeruns in the previous three games against the Rangers which the Kings had won by scores of 17-6, 15-5, and 5-1.

The Wheat Kings were sending hard-luck starter Kurt Rueter, 11-10 so far on the season against the Rangers Nelson Figueroa. Things stated badly for Figueroa as the Wheat Kings started right where they had left of against Mohawk by scoring 6 in the top of the first. Figueroa went out for the second inning when the wheels fell off yet again as Clovis scored 6 more off Figueroa before he was removed in favor of Dennis Tankersley. But it didn’t matter, Clovis’s hitters had their blood up and continued to score almost at will, the second inning ended 16-0 in favor of Clovis. By the time the fifth inning ended Clovis had built an astounding 23-2 lead. At the end of 6 it was 30-2. By the time Mohawk effectively surrendered and brought in first baseman Eric Munson to pitch it was 31-2. When Munson came into the game Clovis put it on cruise control and had nary a hit over the final 2 innings. The damage had already been done and the records already secured by that time however.
A final tally showed the incredible onslaught had been the result of strong hitting up and down the line-up, Jeff Kent 6 for 6, Ordonez 5 for 5, Darrin Erstadt 4 for 7, Myers 3 for 5, Jose Valentin 3 for 6. Homeruns were flying off the Wheat Kings bats as 6 players hit one each; Gonzalez, Erstadt, Kent, Ordonez, Sanchez, and for the 4th straight game Greg Myers who capped everything with his homerun, a grand slam, to punctuate the game with an exclamation point for Clovis and a new MWBL record for runs scored in one game of 31-2!

Myers added a homerun in his next game against Mohawk Valley as well to set another possible record with homeruns in 5 straight games. Not bad for a guy who is not even a starter!

All in all, this truly was a game for the ages, and definitely a game worthy for the Hall of Fame

Click here for Box Score of this Game of the Ages

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