Rob Rosenberg pitched in a lot of high-pressure games at George Robert Field and he returned Saturday night to show the current Dolphins that he can still bring the heat.
As a senior in 2007 under previous coach Tom Seyler, Rosenberg helped Palisades win 23 games and the Western League championship. He would go on to play for Cal Tech and on Saturday he threw three gutsy innings in relief to earn the decision in the alumni’s 4-2 triumph over the varsity.
Alumni baseball games are supposed to be fun outings and the handful of former Palisades players who showed up had a ball reminiscing about their glory days (Rosenberg even recalled his eight-inning, two-hit shutout of University). They were buoyed by the arm of former Major League pitcher Jon Leicester, whose wicked curve and blazing fastball frustrated the Dolphins, who managed one hit—Conrad Smith’s single to center—over the first two frames. The varsity broke through in the bottom of the third when catcher Julian Jacobson doubled to center and scored on Miles Kirschner’s clutch two-out single up the middle.
The alumni tied it in the fifth on an RBI single by Justin Wallis, a catcher on Russ Howard’s 1997 team. Leicester legged out an infield single to put the alumni ahead 2-1 and an error scored another run. The lead grew to 4-1 on an error in the top of the sixth but in the bottom half Kirschner reached on a fielder’s choice and scored on an error.
Lucas Braun retired the alumni in order in the seventh, but after Julian Scissors’ bloop hit to right a double play ended the game.
“This is the way we planned it all along,” Pali High Coach Mike Voelkel said. “We got all of our pitchers an inning or two of work and we’re anxious to start the season.”