Misja Harcksen retired all 27 batters he faced today, ten of them with a strikeout to write baseball-history.
But he had to wait until the sixth inning not only whether his Perfect Game, No-Hitter and ShutOut would remain intact, but also whether he would become the winning pitcher.
Neptunus also was silenced by Twins-starter Jan Evertse, who had a fine outing.
He didn't struckout a batter, but the righthander gave up only one basehit in the first four innings and held Neptunus scoreles in the first five.
With one out in the first inning, Evertse walked Benjamin Dille, but the Twins-defense then turned a double play.
With two outs in the third, he walked Jochem Koedijk.
Shortly thereafter, Koedijk was caught stealing after overrunning second base on a high throw.
Short stop Jerzy van Gool made a nice play, leaped up, caught the ball and tagged out Koedijk.
And so, both starting pitchers only faced nine batters in the first three innings.
In the bottom of the fourth, Neptunus recorded its first basehit when Stijn van der Meer led off with a single.
He advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Benjamin Dille, but stranded on second base.
In the fifth, Quintin De Cuba singled with one out, but Twins again turned a double play.
In the bottom of the sixth, Neptunus finally was able to open the score to support Harcksen with some runs.
With two outs, Stijn van der Meer singled, stole second base and scored on a single by Benjamin Dille.
After the latter also had stolen second base, he scored on a double by Dwayne Kemp.
Neptunus added a run in the seventh.
Dudley Leonora led off with a single, which ended the day for Jan Evertse, who was relieved by Marvin Brown.
Leonora stole second base, then was unable to advance on a single by Quintin De Cuba.
With one out, De Cuba was forced out on a grounder by Gregory Muller.
That brought Leonora to third base and he scored when Jochem Koedijk followed with a single.
...Misja Harcksen looks on from the dug-out in the 6th inning...|
(© Photo: Robert Bos)
Neptunus made it a 4-0 score in the bottom of the eighth.
Benjamin Dille led off with a single and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Dudley Leonora.
As mentioned, Misja Harcksen struckout ten batters, including the final two of the game.
Only six times, the ball was hit into the outfield, two of them being caught in foul territory.
Eleven times, a batter was retired on a grounder in the infield.
Two of these grounders came on a bunt in attempt to break up the Perfect Game.
In the fourth, Brian Biezen led off with a bunt and in the sixth Nick Peels did the same.
Both times, Harcksen himself fielded the ball and eliminated the batters at first base.
There were three moments in the game that were important.
In the top of the first inning, leftfielder Jochem Koedijk made a nice sliding catch in foul territory in the leftfield bullpen on a hit by Jamie Verheyleweghen for the second out.
In the top of the sixth, with two outs, Tijmen Peters (who made his debut) hit the ball into foul territory in rightfield.
There, rightfielder Gregory Muller ran towards the fence down the rightfield-line and near the bullpen.
The American caught the ball, but as he ran at full force, he collapsed over the fence.
On the other side of the fence, he got up and showed the ball!
And in the top of the ninth, Nick Peels led off with a grounder to second baseman Benjamin Dille, who made a nice play and got the ball in time to first baseman Dudley Leonora.
Hereafter, Harksen struckout the next two batters and wrote baseball-history.