Hoosier (IN) Baseball League
Munster Braves 4, Portage White Sox 2
‘Manns Fans 13 in Title Game for Victory’
Submitted by Rudy Ortiz, Braves manager
The Munster Braves faced the Portage White Sox in a best of three championship series of the 2015 Hoosier Baseball League. The Munster Braves had ace pitcher and 2014 league MVP Mike Manns on the bump. After the White Sox took the lead 2-0 on a couple of hits, the Braves struck back and tied the game up in the bottom of the fourth on a Ryan Skaggs2-run single. The game remained tied due to the great pitching of the White Sox tall lefty Clark Sterly and Munster’s Manns. In the bottom of the ninth with the score tied and a runner on first base, Braves’ rookie Mike Victor ( 2015 Braves Rookie of the Year) cracked a 1-0 pitch over the left field wall for a walk-off homer ( Mike’s 2nd walk-off of this season).
Game two was another pitcher’s duel between White Sox veteran and perennial All-Star Zac Robertson and Munster’s Jon Nourie. This time the White Sox batted last and again, with the score tied at two, two outs and nobody on base in the bottom of the ninth inning, the 2014 and 2015 HBL home run derby champ, Mr. Clay Frye, came to the plate and belted an 0-2 pitch over the 370′ sign in left field for another walk-off homer to win game two.
Game three had Munster chasing a 2-0 deficit in the bottom of the fourth when a lead-off double by Joe Ramirez sparked a rally. Donny Zolper tied the game up with a 2-RBI single to right field and then game one hero Mike Victor stepped to the dish and ‘slobberknockered’ the ball over the 32 foot chain link fence in left to give the ”Bravos” the lead and they never looked back. Mike Manns grew stronger on the mound as the game went on while Manns finished with a complete game and 13 strikeouts. The defense also played a huge part in the game as Jason Helbling gunned down a would-be run from right field that would have given the Sox the lead and Donny Zolper threw out a runner trying to turn a single into a double. This is the Braves eighth championship since 2005. The Braves dedicated their season to Elliott Gibbs.