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2014 Wildcats Whip Yankees in 45+ Mid-Iowa

Mid-Iowa 45+ Division

Indianola Wildcats 9, Des Moines Yankees 2

Submitted by Greg Huyser, Indianola Wildcats

The Indianola Wildcats, led by manager Brad Eveland, returned to the Mid-Iowa Men’s Baseball League in convincing fashion in 2014 by securing both the season and tournament championships. During the regular season the ‘Cats posted a 14-2 record, with both losses coming at the hands of the second-place Des Moines Yankees. In the tournament final the ‘Cats prevailed over the Yanks 9-2. For the season, the ‘Cats posted a .376 team batting average led by Jeff Hanneman at .614, and had a team ERA of 3.10 led by Warren Anderson at 1.63. A number of the Wildcats hope to continue this season’s success with the Des Moines Bruins in the 50+ Cactus Division at the MSBL World Series in Arizona this fall.

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2014 Rangers Clip Red Wings in 35+ National in Atlanta

Atlanta MSBL 35+ National

Atlanta Rangers 18, Red Wings 5

Submitted by Tommy Linda, Rangers manager

After a season plagued with injury and life altering personal challenges amongst some teammates, the Atlanta Rangers came together like the quality team they are and fought their way to “The Dance”. After going 9-8 throughout the season, the fourth seeded Rangers swept the Atlanta Bulls in round one of the playoffs and moved into the Semi-Final round to face the number one seeded, defending champions, the Marietta Mets.

Back row L-R: Aris Gil, Reggie Barrau, Ivan Reid, Nasser Arrechavala, Adrian Tillero Bottom row L-R: Wil Barrau, Jon Meier, Cesar Ostos, Tommy Linda, Jeffrey Cohen, Mike Sammond  Not pictured:David Mendez, Brad Richards, Nate Parks, Mark Fitzhugh,

In a mention worthy rematch of last year’s finals, The Rangers took game one on the strength of starting pitcher David Mendez. Two months removed from appendix removal, Mendez tossed a complete game victory and gave up only four earned runs to one of the toughest amateur line-ups in the state. On the offensive side Reggie Barrau out the team on his back going 4 for 5 with three runs scored, an RBI and a stolen base. Other offensive contributors were Jon Meier who had two doubles an RBI and a run scored and David Mendez also helped himself going 3 for 5 and driving in three runs.

Game two of the double header went the other way on us setting up the highly anticipatedrubber match on Sunday. Starting pitcher Aris Gil would give the Rangers all they needed to stay close for the first eight innings. Atlanta went into the top of the ninth down 10-8, in what could be their last at bats of the year. Seven hits and a three run BOMB later, the Rangers took a 17-10 lead going into the bottom of the ninth and never looked back. Seems like our pitchers like taking the games in their own hands because that three run blast to dead center was hands down the nail in the coffin and it was hit by Gil.

So on to the Finals and our opponents are Dennis Taylor’s Atlanta Red Wings, a team that handled us pretty convincingly throughout the 2014 season. We lost two of three to them and our win was a one run scrap-fest to close out the season series. As always with this match up, Game one of the finals had the fingernails down to the nubbs. Rangers ace Mendez took the hill again and held the scrappy Wings to an uncharacteristic four runs. After once again going into the last inning neck and neck, The Rangers strung together some patience at the plate and timely hitting to put three on the board,compliments of a Reggie Barrau base clearing double. The Rangers would take game one by a score of 8-4.

So here we are playing “The Last Game of the Season”, and it would be another thriller. With a rested arm and an adrenaline filled body, Aris Gil took the rock and threw a gem. The defense behind him, stellar. Highlighted by web gem after web gem by starting shortstop Cesar Ostos, who also had five hits in the game. Taylor’s Red Wings battled all the way through and put up five to take a 5-4 lead into the ninth, against one of the toughest pitchers in the league. It wouldn’t be enough, though, as The Rangers once again had an offensive explosion in what was their last at bats of the season, scoring 11 and sealing the deal 18-5.

Special thanks to the entire team for being great teammates and leaving their hearts on the field whenever they were asked to contribute. From top to bottom this team had an arsenal of weapons and everyone filled their role like a pro!

An additional special thanks to co-managers Reggie Barrau and Jon Meier. Together we worked perfectly and selflessly in an effort to see this through and we made it fellas!

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2014 A’s Win League and Windy City Classic Tourney in Chicago

Chicago North MSBL 35+ Division

A’s 9, Cubs 6

Front Row L-R: Neil Cooper, Joe Capparelli, Rich Capparelli, Mike Cibelli. Middle Row L-R: Sheldon Cohen, Fernando Ramirez, Harry Rabenhorst, Bobby Gillespie, Joe Barna, Steve Brescia, Joe Carrozza. Back Row L-R: Mickey Bordon, Tom Klawitter, Billy Peters, Brent Wedow, John Seaman. Not Pictured: Miguel Aguirre, Alonzo Ramirez, Andrew Margolick

Submitted by Joe Capparelli, A’s manager

“Chicago North MSBL A’s are unstoppable!”

League Champs and Windy City 35+ Champions

The A’s of the Chicago North MSBL have proven to be “the premier team to beat” in the Chicago area.After winning a “4-peat” in this year’s Summer league and seven out of the last eight years, the A’s do it again by winning the 35-over division of the Chicago Windy City Classic last weekend beating the CCSMSBL Wood Peckers5-1 in the Championship game. Rich Capparelli went all nine innings on the bump for his second tournament victory. The tournament proved to be excellent competition and great preparation for the Arizona bound players.

Front Row L-R: Dave Holley, Bobby Gillespie, Rich Capparelli, Mike Cibelli. Back Row L-R: Mickey Bordon, Tony DeFazio, Joe Barna, Jamie Sensabaugh, Joe Capparelli, Chuck Douthitt

Cibby says, “See you in the “ship”!

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2014 White Sox Edge A’s in Seacoast (NH) Finals

Seacoast (NH) MSBL

White Sox 4, A’s 1

Submitted by Corey Pouliot, Seacoast White Sox

“The 2014 Seacoast MSBL White Sox enjoyed a magical road along the way to winning their first league championship,finishing the season 14-4-1. The Sox were able to go wire to wire, culminating in an exciting two games to one World Series win over their arch rival A’s, a rematch of the season before when the A’s won the championship two games to none.

2014 Seacoast MSBL Hall of Fame nominee Ron Mitchell, in his 19th and final MSBL season, put together a swan song for the ages, including a masterpiece pitching performance in the series clinching 4-1 win, his fifth straight complete game. Mitchell finished the season 9-1, completing 9 of his 10 starts, and walking eight total batters in 91 2/3 innings pitched. His only loss was a 1-0 defeat to bulldog Pete Jordan and the A’s on August 10th, when the A’s got an unearned run in the top of the first for their only score.

In Game one, the A’s jumped out to a 7-2 lead after five innings, with the Sox defense uncharacteristically making four errors in those first five innings. The defense settled down after that and the Sox were able to battle back to within a couple of scores, 9-7, leaving the tying run on in the bottom of the ninth. In Game two, the Sox offense exploded for 15 runs for a 15-8 win, led by Phil Mackey (3-3, 3 RBI), Jay Dyer (2-4, 2 RBI) and TJ Hernandez (2-3, 3 R, RBI) to tie the series at one game apiece. In the deciding Game three winner take all, the Sox jumped out early, played stellar defense and held on for a 4-1 win, with Aric Graham (3-3, 3RBI) and Ron Mitchell (9 IP, 1 ER, 8 K’s, 1 BB) leading the way for a 2-1 series win for the White Sox.

The Sox offense was relentless all season, led by Aric Graham’s team leading 15 RBI, .500 BA (26-52), .577 SLG and 1.162 OPS, lead off hitter Devon Ramsey (.482 BA, .483 OP 18 R, 8 SB and zero strike outs in 60 plate appearances), Mitchell (.425 BA, team leading 31 hits and 15 SB, 17 R), Corey Pouliot (.429, .493 OB, 1.049 OPS, 13 RBI, 21 R, team leading 35 Total Bases), Tony Hernandez (.431 BA, team leading 22 R, 10 SB, 14 RBI, .535 OB),Rich Tate, despite missing 6 games with a hand injury, hit .400 with 14 RBI’s,TJ Hernandez (.373, 16 R, 10 RBI) and Mike Howarth (.356, .419 OP),the Sox led the league in runs scored for the second straight season (160), as well as allowing the fewest (86).”

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2014 Gamecocks Defeat A’s for ‘Three-Peat’ in Oregon

Willamette Valley (OR) 18+ ‘A’ Division

Gamecocks 8, Salem Athletics 7

Back Row L-R: Jerris Van Hess, Alex Donahue, Nathan Etheridge, Eric Knutsen, Chad Franke, Alex Lavery, Erik Zink, Jacob Gries.  Front Row L-R: LouCarr, Steven Frey, Eric Gantenbien, Derek Aldrich, Ross Knutsen, Cody Schneider

Submitted by James Shier, Gamecock manager

The 2014 Willamette Valley Gamecocks won their fourth League Championship and third in a row with a 8-7 victory over the Salem Athletics! However this year was by far the most difficult for the four time champions. We had an overall record of 23-2, however both loses, one in the regular season and one in the double elimination tournament came against our rivals over the past few season the Salem Athletics, the same team we beat last season to win our second of back to back championships. The championship games this year were phenomenal. Game one went extra innings as both starters threw eight innings and were locked in a 3-3 tie. With two outs in the top of the eighth our team MVP Jacob Gries hit a solo home run to dead center, his fourth of the season to give the Gamecocks the lead. Jerris Van Hess the ACE of our team over the past five seasons, then completed the game by retiring the side in order for his 10th win of the season!

That win forced a second game to decide the eventual league champions. Once again both teams played hard and were deadlocked going into extra innings. The Gamecocks closer got three outs in the eighth to retire the Athletics and then in the bottom of the eighth, with two outs once again, Jacob Gries hit a solo home run to dead center, this time a walk-off in perhaps the most dramatic WVMBL game ever. That was Jacob’s fifth home run of the season. He also lead our team in runs scored, RBI’s, outfield assists and hit .491 on the season. We couldn’t have won it in anymore of a dramatic fashion. Jacob Gries had been our heart and soul all year. No one worked harder or played the game with more fire. He was only one of three players not to play college ball but has worked his tail off over the past three season becoming a starter in the middle of last year and now hitting fifth and playing left every game this year. I couldn’t be more proud of him!

There were a few side notes to this year as well. Myself, along with team captains Erik Zink and Steven Frey, started this team in 2009. Our first year we were awful going 8-14. But each year we got better winning the metal bat championship the following year, just missing the championship game in 2011, and then winning three in a row from 2012-present. This season, in our sixth as a team we won our 100th game finishing the year with a 105-34 career record.

The most amazing part of this year was that I actually missed our championship games due to the birth of my first child Wyatt Edward Shier, born August 21th, 2014. My best friend, Shaun Dougherty came down from Washington to visit us and instead of hanging out at the hospital I sent him to the game where he gave us play by play over the phone for both games. My wife Emily Shier is just as involved as I am, she is our score keeper, arranges all the season functions, helps me with lineups and team decisions and is the anchor for our team, so she was just as tuned in as I was. He had to go through three different parent’s phones because the batteries kept dying over two extra-inning games.So that Saturday I sat in the hospital with my wife and one day old son listening to my best friend broadcast my team’s championship games on speaker phone. As we listened to my team my ‘brothers’ came together and won our fourth championship by a walk-off home run by a young man who I met in 2008 when he was just 15 years old. I coached Jacob Gries at Blanchet Catholic School in Salem, Oregon his Freshman and Sophomore years in High School. Fast forward seven baseball seasons and we are now playing together in the MSBL. That moment could never be topped as we both jumped around our hospital room in tears listening to the Gamecocks win another championship. It truly didn’t matter that we weren’t there, because we were!

After the game a bunch of Gamecocks, including the season MVP Jacob Gries, came to the hospital where they presented me with the championship trophy and even a signed baseball by the entire team for my new son  Wyatt! ?That is why this league is so special. It is moments like this which could never be topped and something I will tell my son about.These stories will last a lifetime!

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2014 Enforcers Sweep Kackalacks to Cop North Carolina Crown

Central North Carolina 21+ National Division

Enforcers 13, Kackalacks 6

The Carolina Enforcers of the Central North Carolina MSBL took a double header from the Carolina Kackalacks on Saturday, Sept 20, to avoid a rubber match on Sunday, winning two games 5-4 and 13-6 to pick up the league trophy.

In the first game, the Enforcers won in the bottom of the ninth on a sacrifice bunt by Russell Blue. The Kack’s catcher overthrew first base, scoring Justin Richardson from first on the error.

The winning pitcher in the first game was Andrew McDonald, who pitched a complete game. Manager Lawson Thomas went 2-4 to lead the attack.

In the second game, the Enforcer’s bats got hot early to score four runs in the first inning.The Kackalacks came back and tied it 4-4 and then 5-5, before the local team broke the game open with seven runs in the top of the sixth to go up 12-5.

Each team scored a run late in the game for the final tally.Bock Pierce was the winning pitcher for the Enforcers, hurling the final five innings. Aaron Cain went three for five with a home run and Lawson Thomas was two for four with a homer to lead the Enforcers’ offense.

The Enforcers are supported and sponsored by Southern Software, located in Southern Pines, North Carolina.  Manager Lawson Thomas expressed that the Enforcers wouldn’t be the success they are without Southern Software’s support and assistance.

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2014 Braves Whip Reds to Claim 45+ Title in Indiana

Indiana Baseball League 45+ Division

Braves 13, Reds 6

Front Row L-R: Todd Fuller, Greg Rubeo, Mike Fisher, bat boy Caleb Johnson, bat boy Daniel Johnson. Middle Row leaning forward: Matt Boyd (red jacket), Steve Brodie Back Row L-R: Kevin Dotson, Graig Collings, Keith Oehlman, Scott Golden, Don Connelly, Pete Kasper, Brian Wolf, Joe Striewe, Ray Starnes, Matt Belveal

Submitted by Michael Fisher, Braves manager

Great team effort by the Braves to win the Indiana Baseball League 45-over championship against a very good Reds team. Matt Boyd started us off with five innings of great pitching by giving up only one earned run. Matt also had a couple of hits with two RBI’s. What can you say about Joe Striewe! Found out the week before the championship game he has a medial meniscal tear and a muscle strain in his knee. Didn’t think he could go on game night but came in and gave us three great innings of pitching to help the cause.

The 10 run fifth inning was the difference with everyone contributing in some fashion. Our fifth inning started off with a hit by Brian Wolf then followed by walk to Scott Golden. Pete Kasper got a hit to drive in Brian. Graig Collings came up with an RBI single. Matt Boyd followed with an RBI single. Kevin Dotson came thru with a RBI double.Ray Starnes then walked and Mike Fisher got plunked in the back for a hit by pitch. Todd Fuller then walked with the bases loaded before we made our first out of the inning. We scored a total of 10 runs in the fifth then held on to win. Another great year for the Braves! We played the championship game without two players who were out with broken fingers which both required surgery. This makes two championships in a row for the Braves.

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2014 Red Sox Sweep A’s for 45+ Title in North Carolina

Central North Carolina 45+ Division

Raleigh Red Sox 10, A’s 4

Submitted by Joe Levinski, Red Sox co-manager

Summary of Season:

The 45+ Raleigh Red Sox of the Central North Carolina MSBL went 15-2-2 in the regular season.

The Red Sox are co-managed by Joe Levinski & Rob Woods.

Summary of Championship Series:

GAME 1:

– Sox scored six runs in the first inning

– 7-5 Sox after four innings

– Three consecutive leadoff singles in the fifth and five consecutive leadoff singles in the sixth with a pair of errors thrown in accounted for five runs and a Sox 12-5 lead after six innings

– Vern Hinton 4-4 (all singles), 2 runs, RBI, and a stolen base

– Jim Arleth3-5 with a double, 2 runs scored and RBI

– Several running/diving catches in CF by Dave Swoveland (season .351 BA, 7 RBI, 10 SB) with runners in scoring position to hold the Sox lead

– Ron Daniel pitched a complete game victory (6K)

– Final score Sox 12 A’s 8

GAME 2:

– Two-run single by Gabe Maldonado after two consecutive errors to lead off fifth inning puts Sox ahead for good 4-3

– LF Jeff Gates (season .472 OBP, 7 RBI, 10 SB) throws out runner at home in crucial spot during 7th inning to keep score at 6-4

– Red Sox pull away with Curtis Miller (season .383 BA, 14 RBI) two-out, two-run double to RF gap in bottom of seventh inning to make it 8-4

– Two unearned runs in 8th after two leadoff singles to finalize scoring at 10-4

– Two hits apiece for Arleth, Hinton, Barnett, and Miller

– Barry Fussell pitched a complete game victory (6K)

– Final score Sox 10 A’s 4

Team Leaders:

Barry Fussell – SP, 7-0, 2.44 ERA, 62K (led 45+ league in all these stats) / .333 BA, 13 RBI, 9 SB

Ron Daniel – SP, 6-0 (2nd in 45+ league), 2.81 ERA (2nd in 45+ league), 37K (3rd in 45+ league) / .405 BA, 10 RBI, 5 SB

Jim Arleth – 3B, .560 BA (1st in 45+ league), 1 HR, 15 RBI, 4 SB

Dave Barnett- C, .379 BA, 3 HR (1st in 45+ league), 34 RBI (1st in 45+ league), 5 SB

Vern Hinton- 1B, .474 BA, 21 RBI (3rd in 45+ league), 6 SB

Gabe Maldonato – C, .380 BA, 1 HR, 19 RBI, 10 SB

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2014 A’s Sweep Surprising Mustachios for 30+ Bay Area Title

Bay Area MSBL 30+ Division

Athletics 16, Mustachios 5

Submitted by Jim Frenn, Bay Area League PresidentThe Bay Area MSBL 2014 30+ championship had two great story lines. First was the run that the Mustachios had. During the M’s inaugural season they struggled to a 3-13 record and a last place finish. But once the playoffs began their pitching and defense led them into the championship series.

That’s where the second storyline comes in. The Athletics were fighting for their third consecutive championship against the suddenly unbeatable Mustachios.

The first game proved to be a tremendous match-up. The A’s led 1-0 going into the eighth when they added an insurance run against two seemingly unhittable pitchers. In the end Jaromlik threw nine incredible innings for the A’s, shutting out the M’s and only giving up three hits. It was a tremendous championship series game.

Game two, though, was a different story. The A’s scored early and often and both teams had a few too many miscues before the A’s won their third consecutive championship by a score of 16-5. Once again, the A’s rode Jaromlik on the mound before eventually bringing in both Steve Peavler and Jimmy Biernat to close it out. If Jaromlik was the series MVP there were some close runners-up, including Ryan Shallat, whose aggressive base running and tremendous defense was key in each game and also Keith Shaw who hit tremendously during the series.