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San Jose MSBL Ettare Division (25+)
San Jose Yankees 12, Nationals 1
Seated: Dave Wark, Greg Salgado (bat boy) First row (L-R):
Harlan McCaskey, Lambert Calvert, Lorenzo Javier, Dennis Gordon, Tim Wright,
Greg Cohen, Shawn Sanford, Jason Trask, Topher Chen. Second row (L-R): Eric
Rynhard, Ryan Erickson, Jose Mendoza, Brandon Dove, Steve McIntyre, Roy
Williams, Alex Niedzielski, Ron Smare, Gil Salgado, Israel Rodriguez]
Submitted by Greg Cohen, San Jose Yankees
As the two-time defending Ettare Division Champions, the San
Jose Yankees came into the 2016 season with a bulls-eye placed squarely on
their backs. However, despite the high expectations for the team, they
did not disappoint, leading the division wire to wire, winning their first 15
games of the season, and finishing with a team record 17 victories for the
regular season. The Yankees also led the Ettare Division in runs scored
with 205 (10.3 runs per game), and least runs allowed with 86 (4.3 runs per
Not resting on the success of the previous two seasons,
Yankees' manager Jose Mendoza set out to improve the roster while maintaining
the strong core that brought past glory. Mendoza's first major addition
came in the form of a former professional pitcher, Shawn Sanford.
Although Sanford was expected to provide key innings on the mound, it was
actually his bat that proved to be his biggest asset. Sanford finished
the season hitting .489 with a team leading 3 HRs and 22 RBI. As well,
Shawn also dominated on the mound, going 2-0, with 1 save, and he struck out 34
batters in only 17.1 innings. Sanford finished with an ERA of 1.56.
Another key addition to the 2016 Yankees was Tim Wright, an
outfielder and pitcher, who showed no rust given his time away from the
field. Wright finished the season hitting .333 with 8 RBI and 5 SB.
Wright also proved capable in the outfield, manning both corner positions
throughout the season. On the mound, Wright accounted for 1 win and 1
save during the season.
The final newcomer to the Yankees was first baseman Steve
McIntyre. McIntyre improved steadily all season, and he had his biggest
at bat of the year driving in a run during the Yankees' game 2 win over the Pirates in the Ettare Division Semi-Final Series.
Second year players Lorenzo Javier and Dennis Gordon continued to provide outstanding play on the offensive side of the ball, and
this season, Gordon joined Javier in providing key innings on the mound
throughout the season for the Yankees. Javier finished the season leading
the team in hitting with a .500 average. He also had 11 extra base hits,
including 7 doubles and 2 HRs, and he drove in 20 runs on the season. On
the mound, Javier finished the season at 4-2, with 41 strikeouts in 32.1, and
an ERA of 4.18.
Dennis Gordon also crushed the ball all season, finishing at
.446 with a team leading 9 doubles. Gordon also drove in 19 runs and
scored 25 runs. Down the stretch, Gordon emerged as one of the Yankees'
key pitchers, getting crucial outs in high leverage relief situations.
Gordon would appear in 8 games on the mound, finishing with a record of 2-1
with 25 strikeouts in 21.1 innings pitched, and an ERA of 3.37.
Yankees ace Ryan Erickson continued to prove why he is one
of the best pitchers not only in the Ettare Division, but in the entire SJMSBL. Erickson dominated in the playoffs, winning, and completing, all
3 of his starts. His final playoff numbers seem as if they could only be
accomplished playing a video game, but over the 23 innings he pitched, Erickson
struck out an amazing 40 batters, while allowing only 14 hits and 1 earned
run. His playoff ERA was 0.38, and his WHIP was 0.87. For the
entire season, Erickson finished with a record of 6-0, 4 saves, 86 strikeouts
and an ERA of 1.19. On the offensive side of things, Erickson got hot
when it counted, and he finished the season hitting .321 with 6 doubles, 13 RBI
and a team leading 19 stolen bases.
Second baseman Topher Chen enjoyed his finest season in
pinstripes, earning his first all-star berth. Chen played excellent
defense all season, and he finished the season hitting .448 with 27 runs, 16
RBI, and 8 SB. The Yankees were also happy to have catcher Dave Wark return to the team for the 2016 season. Although it appeared at the
beginning of the season that Wark would be unable to play, luckily for the
team, he was able to commit to one more season with the Yankees. Wark's
play was outstanding behind the plate, and he contributed all season with the
bat, finishing with a batting average of .341 and 10 RBI.
Second year pitcher/outfielder Jason Trask also showed
tremendous improvement from 2015. Trask became a key pitcher for the
Yankees, and he finished the season undefeated, with a record of 4-0, and 28
strikeouts in 28 innings pitched. Trask also had an ERA of 3.54 and he
spun the Yankees' only shutout of the season. With the bat, Trask hit
.350 with 4 SB.
Yankees' veterans Roy Williams, Greg Cohen, Harlan McCaskey,
and Eric Rynhard all showed that they still had plenty of juice left in their
bats as they came through with great at-bats all season. Williams manned
all three outfield positions, and finished the season hitting .386 with 5
doubles, 21 RBI and 9 SB. Cohen put together a solid campaign, hitting
.491 with 5 doubles, 21 RBI, 22 runs and 11 SB. McCaskey provided great
defense at the catcher position, and his always reliable bat came through with
an average of .373, with 3 doubles, 2 triples, 14 RBI and 12 SB. Finally,
Rynhard played a great first base and finished the season with an average of
.370, with 4 doubles and 19 RBI.
Although slowed by a shoulder injury which limited his at
bats, infielder Brandon Dove provided immeasurable value to the Yankees through
his glove work all over the diamond. Whether he was playing shortstop,
second or third, Dove made one highlight play after another, and he finished
the season as one of the top defenders in the Ettare division.
Outfielder Israel Rodriguez continued to make strides with
the bat and his glove. Although his average was down a bit from last
season, Rodriguez showed better plate discipline as he finished with an on-base
percentage of .343. Infielder/Outfielder Gil Salgado improved his numbers
from his rookie campaign as he hit .400 with 7 RBI. Salgado also hit his
first career home run in 2016.
Veteran Lambert Calvert dealt with injuries for most of the
season, however, in limited action, he did hit .231 with 1 double and 3
RBI. Alex Niedzielski continued to offer crucial support to the coaching
staff all season, and although he had a limited number of at bats, he knocked
in a run, and made a number of nice catches in the outfield. Finally,
long-time Yankee Ron Smare proved invaluable as a coach, maintaining a steady
hand while orchestrating the offense throughout the season. Smare still
got it done in the field, holding down second base and knocking in 2 runs
during the season.
Leading the team throughout the season was manager Jose
Mendoza. Mendoza continued to push all the right buttons and he led the
team to a record of 17-3, earning the number one seed, and Semi-Final Series
matchup against the Pirates.
Game 1: The Ettare Division Semi-Final Series pitted the Yanks against the Pirates. Although the Yankees beat the Pirates in all three
of their regular season matchups, the two teams always played each other tight,
and Game 1 would prove no different. Pirates pitcher Ben Glines shut down
the Yankees' bats, and the Pirates won Game 1 by a score of 8-2.
Game 2: Facing possible elimination, the Yankees turned to their
ace, Ryan Erickson, to even up the series. The Yankees' bats woke up in
Game 2, as they jumped to a big lead early and never looked back, finishing
with a 17-2 victory. Erickson was simply dominant, striking out a career
high 15 batters in only 7 innings. Roy Williams and Dave Wark each had 3
hits to pace the Yankees' attack.
Game 3: In this elimination game, the Yankees again sent Ryan
Erikson to the hill, hoping for a repeat of his Game 2 performance. This
time out, Erickson would have to throw all 9 innings, but he led the Yankees to
a 4-1 victory with 12 strikeouts on the game. Topher Chen and Greg Cohen had 2 hits apiece as the Yankees won the game, clinching their third straight Ettare Division Championship Series appearance.
Game 1: In a match-up of the number 1 and 3 seeds, the Yankees would
face the Nationals in the division championship series. The Nationals, in
their first season in the Ettare Division, made a great showing during the
regular season, finishing with 13 wins. The Nats also finished second in
the division behind the Yankees in both runs scored with 200 and runs allowed
Making his first start of the season for the Yankees was Shawn Sanford. No stranger to the big stage, Sanford lived up to the
hype, allowing only 1 run in 7 innings with 12 strikeouts. The Yankees'
bats also delivered all game, as they continued to apply pressure on the Nats'
pitching and defense by putting the ball in play and stringing together timely
hits. Ryan Erickson, Topher Chen, Harlan McCaskey, Eric Rynhard, Tim
Wright and Greg Cohen each finished with 2 hits on the game, and the Yankees took
Game 1 of the series by a score of 11-1.
Game 2: Before Ryan Erickson even threw a pitch in his Game 2 start,
the Yankees already had an 8-0 lead over the Nationals. However, given
the way that he pitched in Game 2, those 8 runs proved to be 7 more than
necessary as Erickson, building off his epic starts in the Semi-Final Series,
pitched flawlessly in the clincher, allowing 0 earned runs and only 2
hits. Erickson also struck out 13 batters without any walks. The
Yankees would cruise to a 12-1 victory and their third consecutive Ettare
The Yankees would like to congratulate the Nationals on
their excellent first season in the Ettare Division, and wishes them great
success next season. As well, the Yankees would like to thank all of
their families and friends for their support throughout the season.
Playing in the SJMSBL is a summer-long commitment, and the Yankees could not do
it without the support of those most important to them.