This Wednesday, June 28, the Perry Bluejays (5-15, 4-6) ball club will see and hear some Alumni love when they battle fellow avians the Bluejays from Bondurant-Farrar.
For a few weeks now a Facebook page titled “Bluejay Baseball Alumni Night” has been making its way through the hearts and web pages of many Perry High School Alumni.
Joel Ruggle, Perry Alumni, created the group about three weeks ago as a way to encourage former Perry H.S. players and graduates to come by and support the baseball team.
Currently the number of people in the Facebook group is around 145 and everyone has been invited to this week’s contest.
“Not all are coming to the game,” Ruggle said. “About 25 people have said they are coming via the group. Others might be coming and aren’t on Facebook or are coming but didn’t RSVP. No way to really know how many people will come but it will likely be fewer than are in the group.”
This 2017 season is Coach Long’s 40th at Perry and something this significant should be celebrated, Ruggle wrote on the Bluejay Baseball Alumni Night page. Appreciating that Coach Long wouldn’t want any sort of formal recognition or ceremony, we thought that perhaps the best tribute would be to simply go to the ballpark and support the current team. Let’s pack the stands with as many former players as possible and give Coach Long a glimpse of the impact he’s had.
Wednesday’s crowds will help lift up the ball club’s spirits after Perry finished up last week’s sets of game with two back to back losses.
Mike Long, Perry’s head coach is happy with the event and was under the impression leading up to the game that anyone who showed up at the game is there mainly for the players.
“I really don’t know what’s actually going on for sure,” he said. “They have been keeping me in the dark about it. I hope anyone that is coming out are doing it to support the team and not doing anything for me. The kids always have and always be the most important thing for me.”
His team traveled to Knoxville last Friday where the host Panthers (18-5) gifted their guests a 6-0 loss.
On Friday Perry traveled to Knoxville where the host Panthers (18-5) gifted their guests a 6-0 loss.
Perry gave up three early runs in the first inning but then the Bluejays’ arms managed to stop some of the bleeding after tossing two straight scoreless innings.
In the fourth, the home team increased their lead to five and then added another run in the sixth inning while shutting down the Bluejays’ bats.
As a team Perry tallied four hits, drew three walks and struck out only five times.
It was the second time in as many days that Perry took one on the chin. On June 21, the team welcomed Raccoon River Conference (RRC) opponent the Boone Toreadors (13-7, 7-3).
The visiting team opened up the third inning with six runs and added another run in the fifth before the home team erased the shutout with four runs in the bottom of the fifth.
Two innings later the Toreadors put the possible comeback scenario out of reach when they scored seven runs in the seventh for the eventual 14-4 win.
Janier Puente, Perry’s starting pitcher, worked six innings giving up 6-earned runs on 8-hits, with 4-walks and 3-strikeouts.
Perry’s relief pitcher Aaron Lockwood worked the seventh. He surrendered 5-earned runs on 3-hits, while walking one and striking out another.
Offensively for the Bluejays, Brandon Kenyon led the team with a 2-for-3 performance, 2-stolen bases and a RBI.