A bad rehearsal makes for a good premiere.
“We are better than this,” the interim manager said.
Once again, Göteborg Hajarna (8-8) was without coach Jonny Edgren at the helm.
Once again, the Sharks lost.
This time, however, it was against a good opponent. When the Karlskoga Bats (13-3) come to Shark Park, it’s usually a not so close affair. This time though, the Sharks fought back. Behind starter Mikael Lindquist (1-2) the Sharks smelled blood as they took a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Karlskoga took three runs off Lindquist in the second one. But the Sharks were relentless and put up a picket fence in the box score to have the game tied at three runs a piece heading in to the fourth.
That is when the flood gates opened.
Lindquist battled valiantly in the heat but could not sustain the Karlskoga onslaught. The interim manager probably left him out there to long and, once again, was not happy with himself:
“Mikael pitched a great game, those runs should be charged to me,” he said after the game.
After the Bats put up an eight run fourth inning, the air went out of the Sharks. ‘Swirvin’ Shervin Shakki came in and pitched 2 & 1/3 inning of two run ball (none earned) before Joel Earnest made his comeback to the mound, pitching one inning giving up one run.
In the second game, the Sharks started off a bit sloppy behind Mokhlad al-Ghaminis solid start. The picket fence this time belonged to Karlskoga as they one run innings through three leading the game 3-1. al-Ghamini ended his four innings of work giving up three runs (none earned) on three hits, walking four and striking out eight.
Heading in to the bottom of the fifth, this one was slipping away from the Sharks. But the Hajarna faithful got what they wanted as the Shark bats started to come alive. A five run inning provided much cheer all around the park as the Sharks to a two run lead.
In the top of the sixth, a controversial play came to decide this one. With runners on second and third, the Karlskoga batsman looked to be hit by a pitch from relief pitcher Toofan Khazal but as the call was not made, the runners came in to score. The interim manager came out to argue but to no avail, Karlskoga was back in this one.
With the scored tied at eight runs a piece heading in to the seventh, the Bats added two more which the Sharks couldn’t handle and the Bats took the sweep, winning game two 10-8.
“The second one was a very winnable game. I guess it’s a step forward at least,” the interim manager said.
“Also, winning is better than losing,” he added as he left the stadium.
The Sharks head for Karlskoga on Saturday for the first round of playoffs, facing the Karlskoga Bats. First pitch is at 12.
Mokhlad al-Ghamini ended the season tied for first in stolen bases (26) and had the most strikeouts (67).
Niclas Ekström narrowly missed out on the OBP throne, finishing second with .641.
Isak Voigt Jansson had his first two hits of the season.