2020 65+ National

LA Athletics 11, Sacramento Tribe 2

‘Denevi Pounds Out Four Hits, Shuts Down Tribe’

By Bob Sherwin, Athletics manager

The LA Athletics captured the 65+ National crown despite last minute cancellations by several key players due to COVID.  Two players contracted COVID and cancelled the day before pool play began leaving us without key offensive and defensive players.  The Athletics relied on strong pitching to make up for a lack of offense and that carried us through the week to the championship game.

Mike Denevi pitched a two-hitter with 11Ks in game one against the Chicago TSP and that was followed in game two by another 9-inning gem by John Yandle against the Tribe. Mike Patrick followed with a win in game three to put us at 3-0 but we struggled offensively, which began to bite us in games four and five.  After back to back losses against the San Antonio Lone Stars and the Arkansas Diamonds, we pulled out a win in game six against the Diamonds when Danny “The Beast” Pawelek came in from the pen in long relief to nail down the win and send us to the championship game.

Mike Denevi took the mound in the big game and dominated the always tough Tribe before allowing Yandle to come in and close it out.  Our offense finally came alive as Denevi, Mark Flatau and Danny Pawelek came up big with key hits to put the Tribe away. Denevi had four hits on the day as Flatau had three, including two doubles.  Pawelek pounded out a double and single with two RBIs.  Centerfielder Craig Aramaki created havoc on the bases by getting two hits and four stolen bases setting up the RBIs for the other big three.

Our defense was led by Flatau in left and Aramaki in center, both of whom played every inning in every game.  Terry Teske and Jeff Wells anchored down first while Chuy Rodriguez and I split duties at second base.  Paul McPherson was outstanding as always at third while shortstop was covered by Kevin Bronson and the ageless Artie Collazo, who had to do it solo in the championship game.  Blaine Olson and Dennis Clancy split the duties behind the plate all week and kept our pitchers steady.  

As the Athletics celebrated the win against the always tough Tribe, Denevi and Flatau were named Co-MVPs for the tournament.