I’ve been meaning to post this all week, but family health issues have delayed me.
I watched the final innings of the TCU-Texas A&M super regional Monday night in Fort Worth. It was a classic.
It went 16 innings, lasting almost six hours, into Tuesday morning Texas time. TCU gained a walk-off 5-4 win in the bottom of the 16th inning when Garrett Crain scored from third after third baseman Ronnie Gideon mishandled a sharp grounder and threw low to catcher Michael Barash, who couldn’t come up with it.
The stakes were high: a College World Series berth for the winner, elimination for the loser. And there was plenty of drama.
TCU had scoring chances in the eighth, ninth, 10th 11th, 12th and 14th innings.
A&M reliever Ryan Hendrix turned back the threat in the the 14th when, with the bases loaded he knocked a line drive.
So staying until the end was worth the wait.
Still, it was amazing. The game drew 7294, which is a big crowd for college baseball. And almost all stayed to the end.
Surely. some of these people had to go work in the oil fields or punch cattle or some other kind of work.
And remember this is a game played in a metro area that has all four major pro sports. It wasn’t like it was in some little SEC berg where college sports is the center of the state’s sports universe.
Once upon a time, Arizona was a one of the few hotbeds for college baseball. That’s no longer the case. SEC programs draw well. ACC programs draw well. And TCU — of the Big 12 — obviously has insane fans.
The landscape is changing.