The Democratic team led by Jason Bowsza, a candidate for state representative, had a year of experience under their belts and that seemed to make all the difference. The Democrats got off to an early lead in the first inning, making it difficult for the Republicans, led by Lauren Casper, to catch up.
While the Democratic team fielded at least a handful of elected officials including state Reps. Brian Becker, James Albis, and David Kiner, the Republican team did boast a candidate for Congress — John Decker, who is running against U.S. Rep. John B. Larson. Decker had a few hits and missed a few opportunities in the batters box in the middle of the game because he had to get to a Republican Town Committee meeting in Rocky Hill and do a little campaigning.
Matt LeBeau, Sen. Gary LeBeau’s son, wound up taking home the MVP award for his triple, double, RBIs, a few great plays at third base, and only one error.
Walter Spader pitched for the Democrats and managed to strike out two batters while also surviving a collision at home plate. Matt Gianquinto had back-to-back triples in the first few innings. There were no home runs.
Unlike last year’s game, both sides agreed before the first pitch was thrown to play a total of nine innings. Last year the Democrats were behind in the sixth inning and didn’t think one inning was going to be enough to catch up so they proposed going to nine. The game ended up being a tie at the bottom of the ninth, so it went to an extra inning where Democrats were able to squeak out a one-run victory.
No one was injured and CPTV Sportscaster Francisco Graziano did an excellent job of announcing the game. Nonpartisan staffers Neil Ayers and Rob Wysock did a good job on some tough calls, as did all the umpires including Ken Dixon of the CT Post, Susan Haigh of the Associated Press, Daniela Altimari of the Hartford Courant and Christine Stuart of CTNewsjunkie. There may have been a dispute over a fielding interference call, but it was settled without dirt-kicking.
Of course, it was all in good fun and for a good cause.
The game raised more than $2,100 for the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.
“We were grateful to accept the generous proceeds raised from last year’s game and welcome the opportunity to once again bring both parties together for the children we treat every day,” CCMC CEO Martin Gavin said.