Saturday, June 14, 2008

Pigs, astronomers and homers - just another FSL All-Star Game

Viera, Fla. - There aren't supposed to be pigs on the side of the road. That's not a shot at the police. Three times in the last two months The Dugout has been driving on major Florida roads and seen what can only be assumed to be wild pigs foraging on the shoulder.

It happened again today en route to the Florida State League All-Star Game, which is being played at Space Coast Stadium near Melbourne, Fla. Prior to the game a group of people set up telescopes outside the ballpark, allowing fans to look at solar flare activity. They promised even more telescopes will be there following the game.

Brevard County has a pretty good crowd for the All-Star game, especially by FSL standards. Looks like it could be 3,000.

The crowd was significantly less than that for the homerun contest, which was won by Vero Beach’s J.T. Hall. With the wind knocking down nearly everything hit to left field, left-handed swingers enjoyed a distinct advantage. Hall made the most of that advantage - not that the 6-foot-3, 230-pound designated hitter needed it. The top photo shows Jupiter pitcher Jeff Allison congratulating Hall after the first round.

Yes, that is the same Jeff Allison who was a former first-round draft choice by the Florida Marlins, then lost three seasons to drug addiction. Allison is 4-6 with a 4.36 ERA for Jupiter. The stats don’t scream “top prospect,” but at least he’s back on the mound. His velocity has not returned to the mid-90s yet and the control isn’t where either Allison or the Marlins would like it to be. Given time, maybe both will return.

The Dugout hopes to sit down with Allison in the coming weeks. He’s one of the most outgoing players in the Hammerheads’ clubhouse. He seems like someone worth routing for.

More from Friday the 13th: Grand Prairie passed along some photos from its Joe Pool Lake Loch Ness Monster Night. The AirHogs asked fans a simple question: If the local lake had a monster, what would it look like. The bottom photo is one interpretation.

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