T&A San Marino remain the team to beat in Europe as the reigning Italian Baseball League champion has come out of the gate with 11 wins in 13 games. The Titans are joined by L&D Amsterdam, Corendon Kinheim, Telemarket Rimini and Unipol Bologna in the top five.
Below are this week’s picks for the top baseball teams in Europe.
2012 EUROPEAN BASEBALL POWER RANKINGS:
1. – T&A San Marino, Italy (11-2;Last Week-1)
Powerful lineup leads IBL in runs, hits, doubles, homers, RBIs…you get the idea.
2. – L&D Amsterdam Pirates, Netherlands (8-2;Last Week-5)
Reigning Dutch champion has scored nearly 11 runs a game in last four outings.
3. – Corendon Kinheim, Netherlands (8-2;Last Week-3)
Haarlem-based club has four of the league’s top five hitters.
4. – Telemarket Rimini, Italy (9-4;Last Week-4)
Southpawe reliever Carlos Pezzullo has thrown 12.1 scoreless innings.
5. – Unipol Bologna, Italy (8-3;Last Week-2)
Boasts the IBL’s top pitching staff with an impressive 1.97 ERA.
6. – DOOR Neptunus, Netherlands (6-3;Last Week-6)
Benjamin Dille paces Dutch heavyweight with .382 batting mark.
7. – C.B. Barcelona,Spain (13-1;Last Week-7)
Defending league champion is 46-4 in its last 50 games.
8. – Mainz Athletics, Germany (7-1;Last Week-8)
A’s roster has foreign flavor with two Americans, two Swedes and one Canadian.
9. – Rouen Huskies, France (10-0;Last Week-10)
The Huskies are rolling quietly towards an eighth straight French title.
10. – Regensburg Legionaere, Germany (5-1;Last Week-16)
German champs made loud statement with demolition of Mannheim.
11. – Vaessen Pioniers, Netherlands (6-3-1;Last Week-9)
Michael Duursma leads Hoofddorp-based club with .393 batting mark.
12. – Valencia Astros, Spain (11-1;Last Week-13)
Former league doormat has transformed into perennial title contender.
13. – AVG Draci Brno, Czech Republic (8-2;Last Week-15)
Former 16-time Czech champ seems primed to recapture league hardware.
14. – Solingen Alligators, Germany (7-1;Last Week-19)
Gators offense has caught fire early which bodes well for title hopes.
15. – Tenerife Marlins PC, Spain (9-5;Last Week-18)
Playing coach Nestor Perez is in the midst of an 8-for-43 slump.
16. – Paderborn Untouchables, Germany (5-1;Last Week-20)
U’s top the North Division in batting, fielding and pitching.
17. – Heidenheim Heidekoepfe, Germany (4-2;Last Week-NR)
If pitching wins championships, keep an eye on Begley, Dewald, Schattman, etc.
18. – Hoboken Pioneers, Belgium (3-0;Last Week-21)
American staff ace TJ Antonacci is a big reason the Pioneers could threepeat.
19. – Paris University Club, France (7-3;Last Week-17)
PUC stood toe-to-toe with top dog Rouen and remain a legit title contender.
20. – Bern Cardinals, Switzerland (2-0;Last Week-24)
Cards scored most points in a Swiss game since Therwil scored 30+ in Bern in 1993.
21. – Senart Templiers, France (8-2;Last Week-22)
Templiers has quietly won eight of 10 outings in quest of an elusive crown.
22. – Cardion Hrosi Brno, Czech Republic (7-2;Last Week-NR)
Jan Jablonka leads team with lofty .483 (14-for-29) batting average.
23. – Namur Angels, Belgium (4-0;Last Week-25)
American hurler Jake Hummel tossed complete game shutout last weekend.
24. – Eagles Prague, Czech Republic (7-3;Last Week-NR)
Matej Husek (3-0) has a 2.18 ERA with 27 strikeouts in just 20 1/3 frames.
25. – Mannheim Tornados, Germany (3-3;Last Week-12)
Can Tornados regroup after last week’s debacle quick enough to upset Mainz?
Marvin Moore is a freelance writer and former int’l baseball coach. He currently teaches baseball to underpriviliged Filipino boys at the Future Stars Baseball School in Bohol, Philippines.