The Queen of the Embassies
Below is an email sent out to the whole embassy about Ryan’s softball tournament. The title above is the caption that was included in the Italian sports newspaper (Il Corriere dello Sport) below the same picture. (We thought it was funny that a team full of men was called a ‘queen’. :)
TEAM USA – 2009 Diplomatic Softball Tournament Champions
First Row, L-R: Juan Surinach, David May, Nick Noyes Jr, Bat Girl: Maddie Smith,
Blake Costa, Brian Morrill, Sydney Rose, Vince Freeman, Andrew Olsen, Jr. Olsen
Back Row, L-R: Kevin O’Brien, Nick Noyes, Ben Reyes, Matt Smith, Keith Clopton,
Doug Haas, Ryan Reading. Not pictured: Mark Webb, Scott Sieben, Kevin Brew and Bat Boys: Iain Smith & KC Clopton.
Congratulations to our US Embassy Softball Team for winning this past week’s Diplomatic Softball Tournament. After 2 practices with only half the team, Team USA went into their first game with Venezuela a little apprehensive. The Venezuelans arrived in full matching uniforms with coaches, a video crew and a gang of rowdy fans and began running drills and calisthenics. After a pep talk by Coach Smith, the team thoroughly enjoyed routing the Venezuelans in less than 1 hour, 8-5. Next up were the Australians, who, while giving a valiant effort and were very fun to play with, were defeated by Team USA, 20-10. The championship game, played in front of a crowd of a couple hundred spectators awaiting the start of the Italian Baseball All-Star Game, witnessed some great hits, outfield snags and double plays by Team USA as they prevailed against Korea, 30-10.
A large trophy and individual gold medals were presented to all the team members during the award ceremony between innings of the All-Star Game. Thanks to those fans from the Embassy who came out to cheer on Team USA as well as a big thank you to the team for representing the US in style. Thanks also to coordinators Matt Smith and Keith Clopton and to Andrew Olsen for organizing the fields for practice.
Team USA’s trophy will be on display in the Sembler Gallery, Ground Floor Entrance Hall. CLO hopes that this is just the start for softball in the Embassy and looks forward to being able to offer some pick up games in the future.
Ryan’s highlights included batting in the first run of the championship game, a home run with two runners on base, and batting lefty after the second inning against the Australians. My personal favorite was the dissapointing hit that Ryan rolled along the ground directly to the Korean pitcher in the championship game. When I teased him about it after the game, Ryan informed me that the umpire had been asking him to take it easy for the previous two at bats (during which he still brought runs home) and finally just asked him to get out. The umpire was so thankful, that she ran after Ryan to the dugout to say “Grazie.”