Hamilton baseball fans were not shouting “Kill the umpire” but “Where’s the umpire?”
A communications gaffe for the Thunderbirds-London Majors game at Bernie Arbour Memorial Stadium left the two senior Intercounty Baseball League teams without an officiating crew for their July 2 game. While Hamilton team officials manned the phone lines frantically searching for a replacements – which were found in Niagara-on-the-Lake and Guelph – Thunderbirds owner Drew Brady offered free hot dogs and drinks for the patient spectators and visiting Majors players.
After a two-hour wait, the game got underway and the Thunderbirds jumped into an early 2-0 lead and held it for five innings. But the visitors to Hamilton took a 3-2 lead in the sixth inning and then erupted for eight runs in the eighth inning enroute to a 13-4 victory.
John Palmer earned the victory for London going six and two-thirds innings. He allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits and two walks. Palmer retired five batters on strikes. Daniel Hayes finished the game.
Andrew Schwalm, the fourth of seven Hamilton pitchers took the loss. He gave up three runs on three hits and a walk over two and one-third innings. He entered the game in the sixth inning.
For the Majors, Karl Amonte had three hits including two home runs (340 and 390 feet) and four RBIs. He scored twice. Chuck Roberts added a double and a triple and Mitch Delaney hit a two-run 375-foot home run over the right field fence in eighth inning.
Tom Robertson had three hits and an RBI for Hamilton with Marcel Champagnie adding a single and a double. Adam Strongman had an RBI double. Scott Wells also hit a double.