The opening day of the 2019 league season was a day of several firsts for the Hemel Hempstead-based Herts Baseball Club.
The Herts Falcons, who compete in the elite National Baseball League (NBL), were facing the London Capitals at their Finsbury Park diamond.
New recruit Dennis Grogan pitched a complete game for his first victory in a Herts uniform.
The Falcons won 8-7, helped by a home run from Great Britain international Gary Davison, his first since joining Herts over the winter.
The team’s second game of the day was a narrow 4-3 defeat to the Essex Arrows in extra innings.
Another new Falcons signing Jarrod Pretorius got in on the act with a home run of his own, but it wasn’t quite enough to earn a win.
In the Triple-A division, one of the Herts club’s two new teams, the Londoners, were playing their first ever league game.
They came from behind to win an exciting clash 12-11 in extra innings against the Kent Buccaneers at their Grovehill diamond in Hemel Hempstead.
Chris Gregory took the pitching win while Mike Cresswell hit a three-run homer to tie the game in the latter innings.
Game two ended in a 20-8 victory for Kent, who had an explosive 10-run third inning.
The Londoners are scheduled to play their first game at their new Basing Hill ballpark later this month.
The Falcons face the defending NBL champions the London Mets this weekend.