On Saturday, those in attendance of the third annual Clayton County All-Star Game had a chance to witness a little bit of that but more runs than anything in the opener of the two-game series.
The American League All-Stars - players from North Clayton, Jonesboro, Mundy’s Mill and Forest Park - overcame an early five-run deficit to earn a 16-11 victory over the National League (Riverdale, Morrow, Lovejoy, Drew and Mt. Zion) at Lovejoy High School.
North Clayton’s Derrian Taylor drove in three runs and Mundy’s Mill’s Raheem Jackson, Jonesboro’s Chris Smith and North Clayton’s Harold Smith all had two RBI for the AL, which took control of the game in the top of the fifth.
Lovejoy’s Kendall Clark had a pair of RBI, and Rodney Irving (Morrow), Vance Johnson (Lovejoy), Theodore Hassan (Lovejoy) and Kenneth Wiggins (Mt. Zion) all had run-scoring hits for the NL.
After closing to 6-4 in the fourth, thanks to RBI singles from Taylor and Jackson, the AL got run-scoring hits from Chris Smith, North Clayton’s Saevon Harris and Jackson to highlight the nine-run frame.
Taylor and Chris Smith were also hit by pitches with the bases loaded to add to the bulge and Harold Smith drew a walk with the bases full to push home another runner.
The American League also turned three National League errors into runs in the inning.
But the NL All-Stars didn’t let their miscues in the field influence their next at-bat. After Morrow’s Brandon Gaither and Mt. Zion’s Emmanuel Parks induced walks with the bases loaded, Louis Clark (Riverdale) and Nicholas McKnight (Morrow) both drove in a run with an RBI groundout.
Irving capped the five-run frame with an RBI single, closing the NL’s gap to 13-11.
But the AL would be responsible for the rest of the scoring. Harold Smith drew another bases loaded walk in the sixth and Taylor highlighted a two-run seventh with a single to score Jonesboro’s Reggie Naylor.
Then in the bottom of the seventh, Dustin Boggs (Jonesboro) retired the side in order with two strikeouts to seal the Game 1 win.
After the AL broke the scoreless tie in the first, the NL temporarily took control in the second with four singles which translated into five runs for a 5-1 edge.