Funny spectacle, but successful opening for the Capitals

In their beautiful 25-year history, the Capitals have certainly offered their fans more exciting inaugural matches, but the 3,621 spectators at Stade Canac no less appreciated the 5-3 victory of their favorites, finally back at home. home to host the Sussex County Miners.

Everything was in place for a grandiose evening. The heat was there to allow supporters to showcase their spring-summer collection.

By 5 p.m., the terrace was packed, probably as many as the people on it. In short, there was everything for a fiery atmosphere at the start of the 25th anniversary for the team.

Moreover, to underline the feat of arms, Michel Laplante performed the ceremonial throw, practically regaining his former grace, while “Michel! Michael! Michael!” resounded from the stands.

True to form, the fans quickly invaded the terrace for the festive pre-match.


Succession of errors

It was Laplante who was the starting pitcher during the very first Capitales game in Quebec in 1999 and to kick off the 25th anniversary, it was Abdiel Saldana who was entrusted with the ball.

The tone was set, but from there, the baseball aspect was rather disjointed.

“It was very sloppy (negligent),” agreed Patrick Scalabrini, while the fireworks lit up the sky over Quebec.

“It was not a good match. The coach is happy with the victory, but not with the way the match was played. I’m happy with the result, but it wasn’t a great show for our fans.”

The Panamanian Saldana did not display his usual poise and only lasted the time of a teenage romance, four and two thirds rounds.

To his credit, only one of the three points he allowed was deserved. It was second baseman Delano Selassa, juggling a double play ball, who made an error that then allowed two Miners runners to cross home plate.

The Capitals made another mistake and several balls were even caught in a hazardous manner. Result of a grueling 14-day trip? Still, the reigning champions, despite a few hiccups, still brought their record to .500 (5-5).

It must be said that their rivals helped by also committing two errors, including one on a roll from Marc-Antoine Lebreux which allowed the Capitals to add two points.

Each team therefore benefited from two unearned runs and in total, only 11 hits were hit. When we tell you that it wasn’t glorious!

Jonathan Lacroix produced two runs including one on a walk with the bases loaded, while Marc-Antoine Lebreux was held in check in four at-bats.


Sandberg, the revelation

Fortunately for the Capitals, Ryan Sandberg was still smoking hot in relief. In three and a third innings, he only gave up one hit.

“We don’t win this if Sandberg isn’t here today. We went all in to win, but we burned it longer than we would have liked. I wanted her first at home and we’re going to have to dig into our depth on the mound,” noted Scalabrini, who also praised the effort of his third baseman Jake MacKenzie, author of two hits and three runs scored after a start difficult season.

Thunderous atmosphere

Abdiel Saldana didn't have the best start, but he still allowed the Capitals to stay in the lead at the start of the match.

The fans showed their support until the very end.


The partisans, for their part, only thirsted for victory. It doesn’t matter how you get there. In the ninth inning, they were standing and screaming when Frank Moscatiello closed the door by striking out two of the last three batters.

The Capitals are their champions and they were not going to take offense at their little blunders which ultimately had no consequences.

“It’s something to play here, for real. I’m speechless, it’s truly unique. The guys had told me about the atmosphere and I had super high expectations. My expectations were exceeded,” smiled receiver Anthony Quirion, after his first game in Quebec.

The Capitals return to action against the Miners on Wednesday and Thursday evening, before hosting Tri-City from Friday to Sunday.

MacKenzie looked more comfortable at the plate and we need that. He didn’t have a good start to the season.



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