Yes friends, our man in the West TET is back to preview the upcoming Aces vs Heat series – and he means business! Read on and find out why TET thinks the Heat may be vulnerable this weekend….
One will be forgiven for mistaking your correspondent for a 16 year old girl this Friday night. The shrill “squeee!” heard emanating from a certain household in Leederville can only mean one thing – that two of the Heat’s biggest stars are ending their brief off-season hiatus this weekend! That’s right ladies and gents, lock up your daughters and load up “Enter Sandman” in your boomboxes – Luke Hughes and Brendan Wise are back!
To honour the occasion, I have used my power hacking skills to enter a new word into the Oxford Online Dictionary.
Tweat narrowly beat out Perthisota for #1 choice
The prospect of seeing two potential Twins starters in Heat uniforms this weekend is making me so giddy with excitement that I feel a bit like throwing up. Either that or it’s the Minnesota Hotdish I just ate for lunch while watching Fargo. Needless to say I’m really, reallyexcited about watching Hughes and Wise this summer, with hopefully a 3rd Tweat to come later! (please come home, Liam.)
In order to finish this post in any kind of objective manner I’ve taken a couple Hyperbolax (guaranteed to reduce Fanboyism while blogging) to help me take a step back and clearly analyse this weekend without getting overly excited. And maybe I over did it, as looking closely at this weekend’s line-ups the Heat will desperately need Hughes and Wise to resemble the players they were in the States this year. There is a reason why the Heat allowed 18 runs in game 4 of the Bandits series and that’s because the Heat were virtually out of pitchers after the first three games. (Rumour has it, members of the Heat staff were on the roster as emergency pitchers in Brisbane!) This weekend the Heat faces the horror of their first 5 game series. With Graeme Brown and Jacob Clem on State League duties, Ben Moore doubtful (injuries?), Trevor Caughey still AWOL somewhere in Visa purgatory and Liam Hendricks continuing to enjoy the American winter more than Australian summer, the Heat’s pitching staff is thinner than the chances a Tofu Burger has of escaping the clutches of Prince Fielder.
Bravely putting up his hand to help is John Frawley, who is this week’s State League Mystery Pitcher™. Frawley is coming off an impressive 9IP 3ER performance for Victoria Park in last weekend’s state league. Helping Frawley is our local favourites Wazza Saupold and Daniel actually-from-Cairns-but-we’ll-claim-him-anyway Schmidt. I was told game 4 is another mystery pitcher called “Tobee Namd Lata” (possibly Japanese?) and TET boldly predicts Game 5 to be a career high 9 Inning save from closer Brendan Wise.
Luckily for the Heat, the problem is quantity, not quality. The guys we do have sticking their cleats into the rubber have been impressive to say the least. Cameron Lamb’s 3 IP no hit effort to hold on for a 3-2 win against Brisbane comes to mind. If the bullpen can have an easy time of things in the first 3 games, they can help the Heat pull out games 4 and 5 with a little help from the Heat offence, who are scarily reaching full strength with the addition of Hughes. Hughes may also help end the Heat’s defensive woes, who made a ridiculous 9 errors in the 4-game series against Brisbane, to bring the season total to 967 or something.
Melbourne will definitely look at this weekend as a chance to climb back up the ranks before the Christmas Break. To some it seems like a series where The Aces have nothing to lose as, playing the league’s form team at home. But the Heat are 7-10 at Barbaellagello this year so this could be a very tricky series for the Heat. With a guys like Shane Lindsay and Kikuchi on the mound, and former Twin Justin Huber they have a better than good chance at a “shock” series win.
Nevertheless, Australian baseball fans should not turn down an opportunity to see a mini “Dodgers vs Twins” MLB game as Lindsay matches up against Luke Hughes. I advise all eastern-staters to tune in and catch the excellent coverage from the Heat TV boys. Heat fans make sure you head down to Barbarellagello for some local MLB action, but be sure to bring ear plugs as I wont’ be held accountable for any damage inflicted upon your ears by yours truly.