West Metro Atlanta MSBL 35+ Division
Cobb Reds 6, Generals 5
Contributed by Don Fletcher, Reds manager
The Cobb Reds, playing in their first season of the West Metro Atlanta MSBL 35+ summer baseball league, had a record of 12 wins and one loss going into the playoffs. The Reds were the first place finishers and earned a bye week. After the bye, the Reds disposed of the Eskimos to set up a rematch against the Generals, which were the only team to defeat the Reds during the season. Playing at North Atlanta High School, on a field that would easily rival a college baseball diamond, the atmosphere felt like a championship game.
The Reds took an early lead when Perez Cummings scored on a double by Luis Nesmith. The Red’s pitcher Mark Ives was flawless for the first 11 batters until he gave up a walk. The walk was followed by a triple and a throwing error allowed the Generals to take a 2-1 lead. The Generals added another run in the fifth inning to stretch their lead to3-1. The Red’s Martin Carswell started off the bottom of the fifth inning with a single and stole second base. Chris Greenwald reached on an error that allowed Martin Carswell to score. The Red’s cleanup hitter Scott King singled home Greenwald to tie the game up at 3-3.
The top of the sixth inning provided one of the most exciting plays of the season. With runners on first and second, the Generals#23 Woodcam smashed a single into center field that Luis Nesmith fielded and came up firing home. The ball was cut off by the Red’s first baseman Don Fletcher and he threw a strike to the catcher Bobby White. It was a bang-bang play that was hotly disputed but the call on the field was”OUT”. The Generals still had two runners on base and got a single by their leadoff hitter Freewalt scoring two more runs to put them up 5-3.
The Generals called upon their fireball closer to come in to slam the door but the Reds added two more runs by Martin Carswell and Luis Nesmith on a couple of errors, a single and a walk. The game was tied 5-5 going into the top of the eight and the Red’s closer Luis Nesmith, who replaced Mark Ives in the seventh inning, was setting the Generals down in order until the General’s Downer scratched a leadoff single in the eighth. A strike out and an excellent play by the Red’s second baseman Josh Davis and the Red’s third baseman Chris Greenwald stopped any scoring chance the Generals could muster.
The bottom of the eighth inning saw the Red’s batter Bobby White get hit by a pitch. The next batter, Mark Ives, watched four balls go by and advance to first by a walk. Both batters advance on the next pitch which was in the dirt putting the go ahead run on third base with one out. Rafael Decristina was walked to load the bases. Matt Gibbs was at the plate with one out when Bobby White scored the go ahead run on a slider in the dirt. The Generals pitcher struck out the next batters but the Reds were going to the top of the ninth inning up 6-5.
Luis Nesmith closed out the game with solid defense by Josh Davis and Scott King to give the Reds a hard fought 6-5 victory against the Generals. Throughout the whole year the Reds had an unselfish team that when called upon delivered. A special thanks to Andy Austin, John Cattarulla and Stephen Gray for their contributions throughout the season.
Milwaukee/Rock MSBL 35+ Division
Rangers 4, Cardinals 0
Submitted by Terry Teske, Rangers managerThe 35-over Rangers have won our seventh Milwaukee MSBL championship in a row and eighth in nine years with a 4-0 hard fought victory over the Cardinals.
For the 35 Rangers, in the top of the third inning, first baseman Mike Drilling singled, pitcher Jerry Gambatese sacrificed him to second base, and second baseman Jeff Lemmerman doubled to score Drilling.
In the top of the seventh inning, extra hitter Mickey Pruefer singled, catcher Greg Carroll was hit by a pitch, shortstop Jamie Uselding walked to load the bases, right fielder Marvin Oliver singled in Pruefer and Mike Drilling hit a sacrifice fly to score Carroll. Jamie Uselding was able to run home with nobody covering home plate.
Ranger pitcher Jerry Gambatese threw the nine inning complete game shutout over the Cardinals giving up four hits while striking out seven.
John Arnold Sr. was the winning pitcher in the quarterfinal game of the playoffs in an 8-0 win. Johnny Arnold Jr. was the winning pitcher in both the semi-final game over the Snappers by the score of 11-1 and in the first Championship game versus the Cardinals by the score of 9-5.
As a side note, The 35 Rangers have been together for 21 years. The have won five 30+/28+ championships, and now have won eight 38+/35+ championships.
The only two players to be on the team for all 21 years are manager Terry Teske and his high school teammate John Arnold. John and Terry were also in each other’s weddings.
West Metro Atlanta MSBL 45+ Midweek Division
Braves 12, Seawolves 11
Contributed by Dale Malik, Braves managerThe 2014 Braves returned to the championship game for the third time in the last four years and finished the season in what was to be the most intense and competitive game since their entry into the league.
Starting pitcher Rick Kosek kept the Braves ahead into the seventh inning with the score 5-3 and the home team ready to tack on more in their at bat. The Seawolves battled back and pulled ahead 6-5 that inning only to see the Braves push three more runs across the plate by the bottom of the eighth and go up 8-6 going into the ninth. In the top of the ninth with two on, two out and 0-2 on the batter, the Seawolves scored five runs aided by a hit batsman and some carefully placed hits. Now down 11-8, and three and a half hours of intense baseball behind them, the Braves mounted an attack of their own. Rick Kosek came in to pinch hit and started the rally with a walk, whichwas followed by a couple of hits and now the Braves were down by two, with two men on and nobody out. A hit batsman loaded the bases for clean-up hitter Tate Pugh who hit a sacrifice fly to score one run, and then an errant throw to get the runner moving to third allowed the tying run to score. Two more batters reached base via a walk and a hit to load the bases with Sandy Leff coming up to bat. Sandy took the second pitch and drilled a line drive into the left center field darkness to end the game and secure an exciting comeback win.
Terre Haute (IN) 19+ MABL
Red Sox 6, Cubs 1
Submitted by Brian Chesshir, Red Sox manager
The Red Sox beat the Cubs 6-1 in the finals of the 19-over playoffs and capped an undefeated season as well as their third championship in a row. The Cubs pitcher Eric Valdez had a no-hitter going into the sixth inning before the Red Sox woke up. This was a real battle between Valdez and Red Sox pitcher Tim Jonson.
Hoosier Baseball League of Northwest Indiana 18+
Munster Braves 17, White Sox 0
Top row L-R: Donny Zolper, Josh Schenko, Adam Noel, Ryan Skaggs, Jason Helbling, Elliott Gibbs, Mike Manns, Troy Vesling, Brian Adreshak Bottom L-R: Joe Stanisz, Rudy Ortiz, Dave Noel, Brian Hayes, Joe Ramirez
Submitted by Rudy Ortiz, Munster Braves
The Hoosier State Series is a best of three championship match-up that concludes the Hoosier Baseball League of Northwest Indiana season. Game one was a 6-4 victory for the Munster Braves over the rival White Sox. The Braves were led by two-time Munster Braves ”Pitcher of the Year” Mike Manns. The Braves scored first on a first inning double to the right field wall by Elliott Gibbs then tacked on one more in the bottom of the second on a Dave Noel double to deep right. In the top of third the White Sox had the bases loaded on two walks and a bunt single with starting pitcher Clark Sterley at the plate. Sterley punched a two-run single over the shortstop and the game was tied. Manns was able to strike out the following batter to get out of the jam. In the top of fifth inning the White Sox threatened again. Roberto Martinez reached on an error and two runs followed after a misplayed ball in center field. The White Sox were up 4-2 going into the bottom of fifth. With one out, Jason ”My Addidas” Helbling smacked a double to the right field pole and scored on a Ryan Skaggs single. The tying run scored as Brian Hayes scored on a wild pitch after an infield single. Mike Manns delivered the eventual game winning run by knocking in Ryan Skaggs with a single to center. The Braves tacked on one more in the bottom half of the sixth. Mike Manns pitched six innings, walking a season high four batters, and plunked two, allowing four runs, two of them earned, while striking out 10. Elliott Gibbs came in to relieve and recorded the save, striking out the side.
Game two: 17-0 Braves
Two-time LEAGUE MVP Jason Helbling took the mound in game two of the series and was brilliant, pitching a three-hit complete game victory helping the Braves to their seventh HBL Championship title. Helbling struck out eight and walked just two. Helbling ( 2-5, HR, 2B , 4 RBI) also cracked a two-run homer, much to the disbelief of Ryan Sickles, in the first inning which would eventually be the game winning RBI. Troy Vesling was 4-4 with a walk. Josh Schenko and Brian Andreshak were both 2-2. Brian Hayes was 2-2 with two doubles.
Southern Nevada Spring League
Las Vegas Gamblers 11, Las Vegas Snappers 0
Back Row: Roman Gomez, Alonzo Mendoza, Sean Claggett, Bret Katz, Bill Uelmen, Dave Clark, Ryan Erwin, Al Cates, Pete Sevilla Front Row: Larry Huff, Greg Martinez, Sam Colarusso, Jim Glasgow, Chuck Segura, Brian Palluck, Travis Crawford, Dave Scaringe
The Las Vegas Gamblers won their third straight Spring/Summer championship defeating the Las Vegas Snappers 11 to 0. The battery of catcher Jim Glasgow and pitcher Bill Uelmen limited the Snappers to 4 hits with a complete game shut out to lead the way. “…boy was he just awesome” said Sam Colarusso, former All American Pitcher from Cal State Fullerton.
The Gambler defense was outstanding all day. Shortstop Bryan Palluck made a momentum changing diving play on a ground ball up the middle to end a scoring treat by the Snappers. “…it was vacuumed up by some kind of Bissell-Dyson machine like play…” said Colarusso. In the eighth inning, Snapper pitcher Vic Darensbourg leadoff with a single, just out of the range of Gambler second baseman Larry Huff. First Baseman Sean Claggett got to the ball and threw out Darensbourg at second trying to stretch the hit into a double. In the ninth, Center Fielder Greg Martinez made a diving play on a deep fly ball that would surely have been an extra base hit.
The offense started early for the Gamblers by putting up two runs in the first inning. Martinez lead off the game with a bunt single, stole second base, advanced to third on wild pitch and scored on Larry Huff’s base hit to left field. As is turned out, that was all the scoring the Gamblers needed.
The offensive was led by Alonso Mendoza going 5 for 6 andMartinez going 4 for 4. Bret Katz andHuff both collected two hits apiece.Dave Scaringe homered in the sixth inning.
“Make no mistake, these Gamblers will continue to the ride the wave of sweat and awesomeness that flows from Uelmen’s pores for many seasons to come and for many more championships or until his arm falls off” says Colarusso.
Fox Valley (IL) MABL 18+
Johnsburg Tigers 4, Spring Grove Orioles 2
Submitted by Mike McBride, Fox Valley president
The 2014 northern Illinois Fox Valley MABL Championship series featured rivals Spring Grove Orioles (#1 seed) vs. Johnsburg Tigers (#2 seed) in a best of 3 series.
Game one matched up starting pitchers Tommy Hartwick of the Orioles against Ryan Hoff of the Tigers. The Orioles started the scoring in the second inning when Kevin Kurowski reached first base on a fielder’s choice then promptly stole second, then third, then home and the Orioles never looked back. The Orioles continued to add to their lead in the fourth, sixth and ninth innings. Catcher Joey Kass led the Orioles charge at the plate going 3 for 4 and scoring twice while from the mound Hartwick held the Tiger bats in check allowing just one hit over seven innings with the lone Johnsburg run coming on Alex Senyshyn’s steal of home. The Orioles were victorious 7 to 1 in a game that the lead start to finish.
Game two featured starters Paul Koeppl of the Tigers and Tyler Weiss of the hometown Orioles. Weiss kept the Tigers off the board for the first six innings while striking out 10. Spring Grove put up a pair of runs in the second inning stringing together three singles by Kass, G.Ponterelli and Stupienski. The Orioles would add single runs in the fourth and sixth to give them a 4 to 0 lead after six innings. The Tigers closed the gap in the top of the seventh by scoring three runs and the Orioles answered with one in the bottom of the inning. Johnsburg went on to score one in the eighth and two in the ninth on Bryan McCauley’s 2 for 3 effort, which included a triple to steal the win after Matt Wolf closed it out from the mound. Gerard Ponterelli of the Orioles posted a 2 for 4 performance with a run scored and timely hitting by Wehrheim, Kaywood and Sarno of the Tigers led them to a 6 to 5 win. With the series even at a game apiece the winner the third and final game will decide the Championship.
Game three is a rematch of the game one starting pitchers: Hoff for Johnsburg and Hartwick for Spring Grove. The Tigers scored first in the third inning on Sam Lesniak’s RBI double. They then added two more in the fifth on another RBI double by Lesniak and an RBI double by Bryan McCauley. Johnsburg added one more in the eighth inning and Ryan Hoff was cruising until the bottom of the ninth when Spring Grove mounted a rally starting with Hayden Cavanaugh reaching on an error, an Anthony Ponterelli single followed and both runners were driven home by a Joey Kass triple which threatened the Tigers lead and the Series Championship. But Hoff was able to retire the next batter for the final out, a 4 to 2 win and the Championship for the Johnsburg Tigers.
Red River (LA) Adult Baseball League 21+ and 38+ divisions
Benton River Bandits 14, Monroe Mudbugs 10: 21+
Bossier City Rats 13, Shreveport Diablos 3: 38+
Submitted by David Pratt, Red River league president
21+ RRABL Series Summary
It was a battle until the end and it took all three games to decide, but when the dust settled and the offensive barrage finally stopped, the Benton River Bandits claimed their second consecutive 21+ RRABL Series title with a 14-10 win over the Monroe Mudbugs. The Bandits broke a 10-10 tie in the bottom of the eighth inning in game three to secure the crown. These two teams met in the best of three championship last year as well, and in repeat fashion, Monroe took game one followed by Benton winning games two and three, just the same as last year.
The River Bandits were led on offense by Bryan George (8-for-11), Justin Juneau (8-for-13), and Kyle Lawrence (5-for-12). George was tabbed as the MVP. Paul Baker, Brent Martwick, and Juneau all turned in outstanding pitching performances as well.
Championship Series (Best 2 of 3)
Game 1: Monroe Mudbugs 13, Benton River Bandits 6
Game 2: Benton River Bandits 16, Monroe Mudbugs 10
Game 3: Benton River Bandits 14, Monroe Mudbugs 10
MVP: Bryan George, Benton River Bandits
38+ Championship Summary
The 38+ playoffs highlighted the same dominance by the Bossier City Rats that they displayed throughout the season. The Rats defeated the Shreveport Tigers and the Shreveport Diablos to earn their first RRABL Tournament title since joining the league in 2013. The Rats repeated as regular season champs while boasting a final run differential of 171 – 15, a difference of 156 runs. They averaged 12.2 runs per game and only allowed 1.07 runs per contest.
In the playoffs, the Rats discarded the Tigers 12-0 and defeated the Diablos 13-3. Several players enjoyed a stellar two-game set. Here are some of the key contributors:Rob Kenney (4-for-7, run, 2 RBI, 2 SB), Chris Moore (5-for-7, 2 runs, 5 RBI),Paul Levesque (4-for-6, 2 runs, RBI, SB), Jarrod Nipper (HR, 3 RBI), Darien Dukes (W, 7 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 6 K), and Greg Garner (W, 7 IP, 3 R, 8 H, 6 K). Joe Lockhart was named the MVP after going 4-for-7 with two runs and three RBI with two doubles and a triple.
Bossier City Rats 13, Shreveport Diablos 3
MVP: Joe Lockhart, Bossier City Rats