By Andrew Smyth
The Dutchmen entered the season’s final week in a virtual dead heat with both Mohawk Valley and Glens Falls in the standings. However, only two of the three could make the playoffs. Would this be Albany’s year?
Saturday, July 27. In their penultimate home game of the season, Albany hosted Mohawk Valley. Trailing 3-2 with two outs in the tenth, Chris Suseck came to the plate. No pressure.
“The pitcher had a difficult arm slot,” Suseck recalled. “I was sitting fastball, but got a hanging curve. I just threw the barrel
out, looking for a single.”
What Suseck found was a two-run double to left center. The walk-off winner turned out to be just the first highlight of the
most dramatic week in Dutchmen history.
Wednesday, July 31. In the season’s final game, Albany headed up the Northway to face Glens Falls. The stakes couldn’t be higher - the winner would make the playoffs, while the loser would head home, making nothing but excuses. The two rivals had split their previous ten meetings, including a 16-inning affair. But lightning never strikes twice. Right?
Don’t tell that to Chris Suseck. Trailing by one in the top of the eighth, Suseck singled home the tying run. Much later, nearly five hours into the contest, Suseck also singled home the winning run in inning number 16.
After beating Mohawk Valley in their one-game playoff the next night - in extra innings, naturally - Albany advanced to the Eastern Division Championship Series. Following a Game 1 loss, the Dutchmen prevailed in a see-saw battle in Game 2, walking off with a win - wait for it - in extra innings. Although Amsterdam would win Game 3, and eventually the PGCBL title, Albany’s season was unequivocally a great success!
The same can be said of Suseck’s summer. In the final week alone, he started at four different positions, while hitting .310 with 3 doubles, 4 RBI, and 3 of the biggest hits in franchise history. He, and the entire 2013 Dutchmen team, proved that they certainly belong in the Spotlight.