Tag Archive | "ABL"

Brisbane Bandits repeat as Australian Baseball League Champions

The Brisbane Bandits repeated as Australian Baseball League champions this weekend winning their second straight Claxton Shield. The Bandits swept the Melbourne Aces to claim the title.

Game 1 Brisbane 6, Melbourne 2

The Bandits blasted former Texas Ranger Mark Hamburger for 6 runs in Game 1. Hamburger tossed 8 innings in the loss. He gave up 10 hits but struck out 10. However, the Bandits used the long ball to propel themselves to victory hitting 4 home runs off of Hamburger.

Trent Oeltjen, another former big leaguer, got Brisbane off to a quick start with a 2-run homer in the top of the first inning. The Bandits would never trail. After picking up another run in the top of the 2nd, Bandits starter Justin Erasmus gave up 2, 2-out hits making the score 3-2. Erasmus would not factor into the decision going only 2.1 innings. The Bandits pitching staff, including former big leaguer Ryan Rowland-Smith, shut down the Aces bats for the final 7 innings.

David Rodriguez would add a solo shot in the 3rd inning giving Brisbane a 4-2 lead. Then in the top of the 8th, the Bandits added back-to-back solo shots from Logan Wade and Kevin Padlo to finish off the Aces in Game 1.

Game 2 Brisbane 3, Melbourne 1

In the final game of the season, Kramer Champlin pitched Brisbane to its second straight Claxton Shield. Champlin tossed 7.0 innings giving up just 1 run on 1 hit. He struck out 6 picking up the win. The lone run for the Aces off of Champlin came in the 4th inning on a solo home run by Cody Jones.

Aces starter Josh Tols pitched well too matching Champlin for 5 innings. However, after Tols was pulled in the 6th reliever Jon Kennedy gave up 2 runs in 0.1 innings to take the loss. It took 3 Aces relievers to get out of the 6th inning with no further damage. Former big leaguer Peter Moylan finished off the game throwing 3 shutout innings for Melbourne, but the bats never came alive.

Brisbane took an early 1-0 lead on a Wade Dutton RBI single to drive in Liam Bedford. But the lead was short lived as two innings later Jones would homer to tie the game at 1. In the 6th, with runners at the corners Allan de San Miguel allowed a past ball letting Kevin Padlo to score from 3rd base. A few batters later, Aaron Whitefield grounded out to 2nd baseman James Beresford driving in David Sutherland from 3rd base for the final run of the game.

Ryan Searle pitched the final 2.0 innings striking out 4 to pick up his second save of the playoffs.

Brisbane Bandits  Australian Baseball League champions

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Brisbane faced Melbourne in ABL Championship

The Brisbane Bandits and the Melbourne Aces will face off with one another next weekend in the ABL Championship in Melbourne. Brisbane is looking to repeat as champions, while Melbourne is looking for its first title in only its second trip to the finals.

After splitting the first two games with Adelaide, Brisbane’s bats came to life in Game 3. The Bandits pounded out 23 hits en route to an 18-2 stomping of the Bite. However, the game was closer than that most of the way.

Heading into the 7th inning it was only 4-1. Then the Bandits exploded for 6 in the 7th and 8 more in the 8th to run away with the game. Catcher Ryan Battaglia hit his second home run of the game in the 7th for Brisbane, a grand slam. Logan Wade added a 2-run shot of his own in the 7th.

But the biggest performance came in the 8th inning. Mitch Nilsson homered twice in the inning. The first was a solo shot to lead off the inning, which was followed by a back-to-back shot by David Rodriguez. Nilsson came up later on in the inning with 2 on and 2 out hitting his second of the night.

Lost in the shuffle of the late inning Brisbane run were Stefan Welch and Jordan McArdle home runs for Adelaide.

Rick Teasley picked up the win for Brisbane going 7.0 strong innings. He allowed 1 run on 3 hits and struck out 9.

Brisbane now travels to Melbourne to defend its title.

2017 ABL Playoffs:

Game 1: Brisbane 3, Adelaide 1
Game 2: Adelaide 8, Brisbane 4 (12)
Game 3: Adelaide 2, Brisbane 18

2017 ABL Championship Series:

Friday February 10th 7:30 AET
Game 1: Brisbane at Melbourne

Saturday February 11th 6:30 AET
Game 1: Brisbane at Melbourne

Sunday February 12th 2:30 AET
Game 1: Brisbane at Melbourne

ABL ChampionshipABL Championship

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Adelaide Bite Extend ABL Playoffs with Extra Inning Win

The Adelaide Bite needed 12 innings to extend its season on Saturday in the ABL Playoffs. Mitch Dening had two bit RBI in the 12th on a 2-run home run giving the Bite the lead over the Brisbane Bandits. Loek van Mil pitched 4.0 scoreless innings in relief to hold the Bandits off.

Adelaide jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead in the top of the 1st inning. LeDarious Clark led off the game with a walk and quickly scored on a Jordan Cowan double. After a ground out, Marcus Greene Jr. homered to left giving the Bite a quick 3-0 lead.

It was a short lived lead.

Brisbane would get a single run back in the bottom of the 1st inning on a Mitch Nilsson RBI single. An inning later they would tie the game on back-to-back homers by Wade Dutton and Minnesota Twins prospect Aaron Whitefield.

Both would score a single run before they headed to extra innings and the Mitch Dening home run. Dening finished the game 2-for-5 with a walk.

Ryan Searle (L, 0-1) took the loss giving up the four runs in the 12th. Neither started made it out of the 5th inning.

Notable Performers: Jordan Cowan finished the game with 4 hits (4-for-6) and scored twice. Marcus Greene Jr. drove in two and picked up 3 hits (3-for-6). Josh Altmann also went 3-for-6 in the game for the Bite.

The deciding Game 3 will be played Sunday afternoon in Brisbane. The winner advances to next weekends ABL Championship round against Melbourne. Brisbane is trying to repeat as champions. Neither Melbourne or Adelaide have won a title, although Adelaide has finished runner-up three times, including the past two seasons.

Gong for Brisbane in the deciding Game 3 will be former Tampa Bay Rays farmhand Rick Teasley.

Full Box Score

ABL Playoffs

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ABL Playoffs: Brisbane Takes Game 1 from Adelaide

Former Arizona Diamondback and Los Angeles Dodger outfielder Trent Oeltjen helped the Brisbane Bandits to steal Game 1 of the ABL Playoffs from the Adelaide Bite.

The Bite led 1-0 after the 6th inning on a Jordan Cowan two out triple to score Jordan McArdle. Bite starter Max MacNabb tossed 7.0 solid innings. The former draft pick of the San Diego Padres who played for the Senart Templiers in the French Division 1 League last summer didn’t allow a run while striking out 6.

But Brisbane would come back with a strong 8th inning to pull off the win.

Matthew Williams came in to start the 8th for MacNabb and he immediately gave up a lead off single to David Sutherland. Wade Dutton followed Sutherland with a bunt single of his own to put two men on with no outs. Aaron Whitefield tried to sacrifice the two runners over, but a throwing error by Bite pitcher Williams allowed the tying run to score and left two Bandits’ runners still on base. Then still with no outs, Oeltjen tripled to put the Bandits up 3-1 to secure the win.

Ryan Searle pitched the final two innings for Brisbane to pick up the save. The former Chicago Cubs farmhand pitched in both Taiwan (Lamigo Monkeys) and Italy (Unipol Bologna) in 2016.

The two teams will face off once again on Saturday with Brisbane a single win away from a return to the ABL Championship.

The two teams travel to Brisbane for Game 2. On the hill for the defending champion Bandits will be Kramer Champlin a former Toronto Blue Jays farmhand who has pitched in the Frontier League the past few summers. For Adelaide will be 16-year old Jack O’Loughlin who went 3-3 in 9 games (8 starts) with a 3.02 ERA this season.

Complete Box Score

ABL Playoffs Brisbane

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Playoffs Set for this Weekend in Australian Baseball League

The playoffs in the Australian Baseball League begin this weekend. The Brisbane Bandits will have a chance to repeat as champions, but they will have to go through the Adelaide Bite in the first round of the playoffs.

Adelaide finished in second place during the regular season going 23-17, 3 games behind first place Melbourne. Brisbane finished 4.5 games out of first, but both Brisbane and Adelaide head into the playoffs on an 8-2 clip over the past 10. Melbourne on the other hand has struggled going 3-7 to finish the season.

The playoffs of the ABL are set up with the 1st place team having a week off while the 2nd and 3rd place teams play for a spot in the championship. Melbourne will be awaiting the winner of this weekends playoffs.

Adelaide might be after a little payback this year. Last season Brisbane defeated Adelaide in the finals 2-0 to claim its first title.  However, the two teams split during this season.

Brisbane will travel to Adelaide for Game 1 on Friday night (early Friday morning US time). Then both teams will travel to Brisbane for Game 2 on Saturday and if necessary, Game 3.

Final ABL Standings:

  1. Melbourne Aces 26-14
  2. Adelaide Bite 23-17
  3. Brisbane Bandits 21-18
  4. Canberra Cavalry 20-20
  5. Sydney Blue Sox 15-24
  6. Perth Heat 14-26

ABL Playoff Schedule:

Friday February 3rd
Brisbane at Adelaide

Saturday February 4th
Adelaide at Brisbane

Sunday February 5th
*Adelaide at Brisbane
*if necessary

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Playoff Picture Wide Open Heading into Last Weekend of ABL Season

It was an exciting weekend in the Australian Baseball League with two series sweeps. The final weekend will be a wild one as three teams are fighting for the last playoff spot.

While the Melbourne Aces (24-12) have already clinched a playoff spot, but they limp into the final weekend of the regular season being swept by the current second place team Adelaide Bite (20-16). Despite the good season so far for the Aces, they definitely want to gain a little momentum heading into the playoffs. They are facing the right opponent just for that too in the final week, the last place Perth Heat (12-24).

The series between the Aces and Bite helped Adelaide jump a spot to the no. 2 seed currently heading into the final weekend of the season. The Bite played well all weekend and with the four wins passed the Canberra Cavalry who split their weekend series with the Sydney Blue Sox.

Thanks to ABL TV I was able to watch the final game of the series between the Aces and Bite. I walked away quite impressed with a few player in particular from the Bite. The first to draw my attention was Texas Rangers prospect Josh Altmann. Altmann went 2-for-4 in the game with a long 2-run home run, but I was even more impressed by his two outfield assists. He threw out James Beresford at home, and then to kill a potential rally again he nailed Austin Darby late in the game trying to stretch a single into a double.

Zach Cooper (W, 2-0) pitched well for the Bite to pick up the win, but I was most impressed by Josh Tols for the Aces. He came in and pitched four innings of near perfect relief. He walked one, gave up no hits, and struck out seven. Tols has been an impressive reliever over his time in the ABL. In his four seasons he has compiled a 16-5 record with a 1.99 ERA over 57 games. Mostly in relief, only 4 starts, and mostly with the Adelaide Bite, Tols has struck out 130 over 108.1 innings. He has pitched in different independent leagues over the past few summers, the last two for the Kansas City T-Bones of the American Association.

As a fan of the game at home in the USA and abroad it was nice to see Peter Moylan still hurling the ball as he pitched a perfect inning for the Aces in relief to finish off the game.

The Brisbane Bandits got a walk-off home run from Tampa Bay Rays prospect Kevin Padlo (3-for-5) to seal the sweep. David Rodriguez (2-for-4) also homered for the Bandits in the win as they made a furious comeback in the late innings to overcome a 7-2 deficit to win 9-8.

Perth jumped out early on a Josh Kennelly three-run bomb to put the Heat up 3-0. Luke Hughes would put the Heat up 8-6 in the top of the 8th inning with a solo shot, only to see the Bandits get 3 runs in the last two innings to pull off the win.

The Bandits did not have the only walk-off win on Sunday. The Sydney Blue Sox pulled one off late as well scoring 3 runs in the bottom of the 9th to pull off the win and even the weekend series with the Canberra Cavalry at two games apiece.

Both teams score in bunches as Sydney went up early with a four run 4th inning. After a single run in the 5th by the Cavalry, they surged on top of the game with a 5 run 6th inning. But with the strong 9th inning the Blue Sox pulled off the win. You can see the final play below courtesy of the Sydney Blue Sox.


Weekend ABL Schedule:

Thursday January 19th
Adelaide 4 at Melbourne 1 (11)
Perth 2 at Brisbane 3

Friday January 20th
Adelaide 4 at Brisbane 3
Canberra 5 at Sydney 3
Perth 6 at Brisbane 8

Saturday January 21st
Canberra 1 at Sydney 5
Canberra 2 at Sydney 1
Adelaide 6 at Melbourne 2
Perth 7 at Brisbane 8

Sunday January 22nd
Adelaide 5 at Melbourne 1
Perth 8 at Brisbane 9
Canberra 6 at Sydney 7

Current ABL Standings:

Club W L PCT GB Home Away L10 Streak
Melbourne Aces 24 12 .667 13-7 11-5 4-6 L4
Adelaide Bite 20 16 .556 4.0 9-7 11-9 7-3 W5
Canberra Cavalry 19 17 .528 5.0 10-6 9-11 5-5 L1
Brisbane Bandits 18 17 .514 5.5 11-8 7-9 7-3 W5
Sydney Blue Sox 14 21 .400 9.5 11-9 3-12 3-7 W1
Perth Heat 12 24 .333 12.0 8-8 4-16 3-7 L5

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Australian Baseball League: Weekend Schedule and Standings

The Australian Baseball League is heading into the final stretch with just two weekends left before the playoffs begin. The Melbourne Aces have all but sown up the no. 1 seed in the playoffs needing just a win or a Canberra Cavalry loss. The Aces have a 6.5 game lead heading into the second to last weekend.

The bigger race at the moment is for the no. 2 and no. 3 seeds. Only two other teams after Melbourne will advance to play against each other in the first round of the playoffs. The winner of that best-of-3 series would then play the no. 1 seed in the final.

No team is quite fully out of it right now, but three teams are fighting for the last two playoff spots. Only two games separate the Canberra Cavalry, Adelaide Bite, and Brisbane Bandits. The rest of the league is just 3.5 games out of third place.

Melbourne is currently playing Adelaide this weekend with Adelaide already taking Game 1 in 11 innings last night. Perth (currently 12 games out of first) is taking on Brisbane this weekend with the Bandits taking Game 1 of the series as they try to keep pace with Adelaide and fight for one of the final two playoff spots.

Weekend ABL Schedule:

Thursday January 19th
Adelaide 4 at Melbourne 1 (11)
Perth 2 at Brisbane 3

Friday January 20th
Adelaide at Brisbane
Canberra at Sydney
Perth at Brisbane

Saturday January 21st
Canberra at Sydney (DH)
Adelaide at Melbourne
Perth at Brisbane

Sunday January 22nd
Adelaide at Melbourne
Perth at Brisbane
Canberra at Sydney

Current ABL Standings:

Club W L PCT GB Home Away L10 Streak
Melbourne Aces 24 9 .727 13-4 11-5 7-3 L1
Canberra Cavalry 17 15 .531 6.5 10-6 7-9 5-5 L1
Adelaide Bite 17 16 .515 7.0 9-7 8-9 5-5 W2
Brisbane Bandits 15 17 .469 8.5 8-8 7-9 6-4 W2
Sydney Blue Sox 12 19 .387 11.0 9-7 3-12 3-7 L1
Perth Heat 12 21 .364 12.0 8-8 4-13 5-5 L2

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Australia: Perth Back in Championship Series to face Adelaide

The Alcohol. Think Again Perth Heat blew by the Sydney Blue Sox on Saturday by a score of 9-2 to win the 2015 ABL Preliminary Final series advancing to the championship series for the fifth year. The Heat swept the series 2-0 after winning 5-4 Friday night.

Warwick Saupold pitched well for Perth going 4.1 innings allowing no runs on five hits while striking out seven. He did not pitch enough to pick up the win but he led the way. Scott Mitchinson picked up the win in relief giving up two runs in 1.2 innings of work. Daniel Schmidt, Ben Shorto, and Mike McCarthy finished off the game all going a scoreless inning.

Offensively Luke Hughes scored twice, Tim Smith went 2-for-5 with a pair of RBI, and Rene Tosoni led the way with three hits driving in a pair.

The series win sets up a Perth Heat versus Adelaide Bite championship series set to start February 6. The series will take place at Norwood Oval in Adelaide after the Bite became just the second team in league history to win 30 or more games during the regular season finishing up at 32-16.

The two teams split their first series against one another way back in November in Adelaide. They faced off again in January with Perth winning three of four finishing the season series with a 5-3 record against Adelaide.

The Championship Series will be carried live on ESPN Australia/NZ and worldwide on MLB Network and Fox Sports Asia.

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Australia: Adelaide Leading League Standings

Halfway through Week 11 of the Australian Baseball League season the Adelaide Bite have a strong five game lead over the Perth Heat. These two teams are facing each other this weekend in Perth with the Heat taking the first two games so far.

There is only two more weeks left after this weekend in the schedule before the playoffs start. The good thing for Adelaide is they finish the final two weeks with two series against the last place Melbourne Aces. The rest of the league is fighting for playoff positioning. Perth, Brisbane, Canberra, and Sydney are all within two games of each other.

Aaron Miller is having a great season for Adelaide. He leads the league in several offensive categories including average (.389), hits (56), total bases (101), runs (37), on base (.444), slugging (.701), and is second in home runs (12). Another player having a nice season is former MLB outfielder Trent Oeltjen who is hitting .309 with 6 home runs, and 29 RBI for the Sydney Blue Sox.

On the hill, Tim Atherton is having a great season for Canberra. Through ten starts he is 6-0 with an ERA of just 2.21. For Adelaide Morgan Coombs is having a nice season on the mound. Through eleven games (nine starts) he is 6-1 with a 2.32 ERA and has one save.

Current ABL Standings:

1. Adelaide Bite 25-13
2. Perth Heat 20-18
3. Brisbane Bandits 19-19
4. Canberra Cavalry 19-19
5. Sydney Blue Sox 18-20
6. Melbourne Aces 13-25

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Australia: Justin Huber Announces Retirement and Last Game

Justin Huber has decided to call it quits on the playing field. In an email sent to Melbourne Ace members, the 14-year professional stressed the importance of telling the Aces most loyal fans. He announced that his last game on the field will be Saturday January 24th.

Huber has played five seasons in the ABL hitting a total of 21 home runs over that time and helped the Aces make the 2011-2012 ABL Championship Series. Along with playing in his home country, Huber played in the two highest professional leagues playing in the MLB for parts of every season from 2005-2009 before leaving for Japan and the NPB in 2010.

So far this season in the ABL Huber is hitting .289 with 2 home runs. Huber’s best season in the ABL came in the 2011-2012 campaign when he hit .348 with 6 home runs and 26 RBI.

Huber is not done with baseball altogether. He will take over as the Melbourne Aces general manager, a role that has been vacant since Windsor Knox stepped down before the season.

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Australia: A Fan’s Trip to See Every ABL Stadium

I am a huge fan of road trips. When you add in sports it makes it even better. A lifelong dream of mine is to visit every MLB stadium in a summer. A few years back I got to go to every KBO stadium in a season (they have since added a new one and another is on the way). I am not sure how I ran across the story (I think it was the BallparkChasers Facebook page), but it is one I am definitely following.

Kirsten Richards is a native Australian who is embarking on a huge road trip across the great nation to visit all of the Australian Baseball League teams. It’s a good 3,300 mile trip (5,300 km) and remember it is summer there too so its not like she is traveling in cool fall weather.

I’m a bit jealous. After the ABL was reborn a few years ago I have been wanting to get down there and see a game, or two, or three, or six. I don’t know why but I’ve found myself following the Sydney Blue Sox (mainly because of their pitching) but they have yet to win a title. The league intrigues me and I have often listened and watched via the internet.

If you want to follow along with her trip (its in its early stages) check out her blog at Wishing for Boston. She just posted about the first game she saw recently and has been posting about the other sites she is seeing across Australia.

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Australia: Brisbane Leads League Early in ABL Season

Through the first five weeks of the Australian Baseball League season, the Brisbane Bandits are leading the league with a 12-8 record. The Adelaide Bite are just a half game back at 10-7 with Sydney being the only other team with a winning record at 11-9.

Some of the hottest hitters so far early in the season are Craig Maddox who leads the league in hitting at a .425 clip. The Bite catcher is second in the league in doubles with seven while leading the league in both on base percentage (.511) and OPS at 1.336. Mitch Denning has found his power swing in Adelaide as well hitting seven home runs to tie for the early lead in the league. This matches his total for the past three seasons in the ABL (0, 5, and 2). Denning is tied with Kellin Deglan. This is Deglan’s first year in the league. Canberra’s Jack Murphy is also having a good season early on hitting .411 (2nd in the league).

On the pitching side of things Tim Atherton is back with Canberra and having a great season so far. Already 4-0, Atherton is leading the league in ERA at a 1.23 clip through twenty-two innings. Sydney’s Markus Solbach has also been strong on the mound. After a lackluster shortened season with Melbourne a year ago, Solbach has positioned himself as one of the top starters in the league. Through 34.1 innings, Solbach is 4-0 with a 2.36 ERA and a 0.96 WHIP.

Australian Baseball League Standings:

1. Brisbane Bandits 12-8
2. Adelaide Bite 10-7
3. Sydney Blue Sox 11-9
4. Canberra Cavalry 8-9
5. Perth Heat 8-9
6. Melbourne Aces 5-12

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Australia: ABL to Hold First Supplemental Draft

The Australian Baseball League holds its first supplemental draft for the 2013/14 season on Thursday. The six clubs will have a pool of players from Australia, the US, and other places to choose from.

The new season begins on Thursday October 31st as the Canberra Cavalry start the defense of their title against the Melbourne Aces.

For more information visit TheABL.com where you can read Tyle Maun’s article detailing the draft.

2012/13 Australian Baseball League Standings:

1. *Canberra Cavalry 27-19
2. Sydney Blue Sox 26-19
3. Perth Heat 25-21
4. Brisbane Bandits 23-22
5. Adelaide Bite 21-25
6. Melbourne Aces 15-31

*Won ABL Title after defeating the Perth Heat in the championship

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Baseball and Softball South Australia Receives $2 Million Grant

Baseball and softball in South Australia secured a grant of $2 million to use toward facility development.

The grant will help with the expansion and refurbishment of the Softball SA West Beach facility. Baseball South Australia will work with the Australian Baseball League and the Adelaide Bite to help provide a facility that can meet the needs of using the facility for professional games.

Complete Press Release from the Australian Baseball Federation

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Australia: Canberra Wins ABL Championship on Late Home Run

CANBERRA, Australia – The Canberra Cavalry took advantage of two Perth Heat errors and a late inning home run to win the 2013 Australian Baseball League Championship.

The Cavalry got down early as Perth jumped out in the top of the first with a pair of runs. In its half of the inning, Kody Hightower (1-for-5) cut the lead to one with a lead off solo home run.

An inning later, Canberra would take the lead with a four run second. The big play came with one out and a runner at first. Antonio Callaway (0-for-4/2 runs) reached on a fielding error by Perth second baseman Luke Hughes who mishandled a throw on a force play. That error opened the door for Canberra, and they walked right through. After a passed ball that allowed the runners to move up, Ryan Stovall (2-for-4/3 RBI) came up with a big single to drive in a pair of runs. His at bat was followed up by a walk and two more singles and before Perth could get out of the inning it had given up four unearned runs and the lead.

An inning later, Canberra would get a fifth unearned run after a throwing error by Heat third baseman Carter Bell allowed the inning to continue. Once again it was Stovall who came through with the hit after the error driving in another run.

Down 6-2 heading into the fifth inning, Perth battled back to tie it. With one out, Heat designated hitter Aaron Bonomi (1-for-4) got the rally going with a single. The next hitter, Ryan Khoury (1-for-3) followed suit with a single of his won. After a ground out put runners at the corners, Tim Kennelly (2-for-3) singled to cut the lead to three.

The next hitter atoned for his earlier error as Luke Hughes (1-for-4) tripled driving in a pair of runs. Allan de San Miguel (1-for-4) singled to knock in Hughes and the game was once again tied.

Canberra took the lead for good on a seventh inning solo home run by Michael Wells (1-for-4).

Perth would just manage one more hit over the game as the Cavalry bullpen shut them down. Brodie Downs (W, 1-0) picked up the win pitching 1.1 innings of relief, and Sean Toler (S, 2) got the save pitching the ninth.

Neither starter fared too well. Perth starter Warwick Saupold lasted just three innings giving up nine hits and six runs (one earned). Canberra starter John Holdzkom lasted a little longer but didn’t do much better. He pitched 4.2 innings giving up seven hits allowing six runs.

Jack Murphy (3-for-4 / 1 RBI) and Aaron Sloan (3-for-4) led the Cavalry offense with three hits apiece.

Michael Ohlman (2-for-3) drove in a pair of runs in the loss for Perth.

The win is Canberra’s first ever ABL Championship and ends Perth’s two year run as champion.

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Australia: Canberra Wins Game One; Goes for Championship Title Saturday

CANBERRA, Australia – The Canberra Cavalry won the first game of the Australian Baseball League Championship Series on Friday against the Perth Heat 6-4. The win puts Canberra just a win away from their first ABL title.

Canberra starter Brian Grening (W, 1-0) pitched well to earn the victory tossing 7.2 innings allowing just two runs on six hits. He kept the Heat off the scoreboard until the eighth inning. Sean Toler (S, 1) tossed 1.1 innings of relief to earn the save, but gave up two home runs in the process.

The Cavalry got off to a quick start scoring a run in the bottom of the first inning. Jack Murphy (1-for-3) singled up the middle to drive in the first run of the game.

Canberra would pick up three more runs in the second inning. Michael Wells (1-for-3) and Aaron Sloan (2-for-4) started off the inning with back-to-back singles. After a sacrifice moved runners to second and third, Kody Hightower (3-for-5) singled up the middle scoring Wells and Sloan. The single went right through the legs of center fielder Corey Adamson for a three base error that allowed Hightower to come all the way around to score making it 4-0 Canberra.

Two innings later Canberra showed their power with a pair of home runs. Sloan led off the inning with a home run to center field. Three batters later Ryan Stovall (2-for-4) followed up with another long ball to make the score 6-0.

Perth battled back late in the game picking up a pair of runs in the eighth and ninth innings but fell just short. Tim Kennelly (1-for-4) and Luke Hughes (1-for-4) hit back-to-back home runs in the ninth inning to close the gap to two. And that is where it would end.

Heat starter Anthony Claggett (L, 1-1) didn’t pitch great going six innings allowing six runs (five earned) giving up 12 hits including two home runs.

Game 2 is Saturday at 7:00 pm local time as Canberra looks to win its first championship and Perth looks to rebound and force a final winner-take-all game on Sunday.

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Australia: ABL Championship Preview

CANBERRA, Australia – The Australian Baseball League Championship Series kicks off this weekend as the Canberra Cavalry host the two-time defending champion Perth Heat.

Canberra finished first in the standings with a record of 27-19. This is the first time they are making the playoffs. Heading into the finals after having last week off, the Cavalry are riding a three-game winning streak. They owned the season series against Perth going 6-2 on the year. However, the two teams haven’t played since early January.

Canberra has the best offense in the league. They led the league in home runs (56), batting average (.295), slugging percentage (.465), doubles (94), and total bases (759 – more than 150 more than 2nd place).

Adam Buschini won the league’s triple crown leading the league in hitting (.363), home runs (15), and RBI (50). Also with big seasons were third baseman Jeremy Barnes (.343/7/32), shortstop Kody Hightower (.325/2/22), and Ryan Stovall (.320/7/24).

Canberra ranked in the middle of the pack in pitching. The pitching staff posted an ERA of 4.04, finished second in saves with 12, but ranked second in the league in strikeouts.

Leading the pitching staff is Brian Grening (4-2) who finished 8th in the league in ERA at 2.87. Sean Toler (2-0/2.84) led the team in saves with 11

Perth finished the season in third place, but they are riding a six-game winning streak after sweeping Sydney in the first round of the playoffs.

Perth finished second in the league in batting average behind Canberra at .267. They led the league in triples (11) and finished in the middle of the field in home runs (31).

The offense is led by outfielders David Amberson (.380/1/7), Corey Adamson (.321/1/18), first baseman Michael Ohlman (.317/6/27), and catcher Allan de San Miguel (.294/5/30).

Perth may be lacking in the big numbers of the Canberra hitters, but they have experience on their side.

On the hill, Perth is led by Anthony Claggett (4-5/3.31), Daniel Schmidt (7-3/3.72), and Warwick Saupold (1-1/2.79). Brendan Wise (2-1/2.14/3 saves) has done well closing out games.

Game 1 will feature Brian Grening against Anthony Claggett on Friday February 8. Game 2 is slated to feature John Holdzkom (4-3/4.10) against Warwick Saupold. If necessary, Game 3 will feature Chris Motta (3-3/5.93) against Daniel Schmidt.

Fans in the USA can watch the games on the MLB Network. Fox Sports 2 will be showing the games in Australia.

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Australia: Perth Heat Advance to ABL Championship with Sweep of Sydney

The Perth Heat showed why they have won the first two ABL titles over the weekend with a two game sweep of the Sydney Blue Sox in the first round of the playoffs.

Game one saw a good pitching matchup between the two starters. Both went six innings allowing just a single run. However, it was the Heat bullpen that was up to the task. They allowed just three more hits over the final three innings and not another run. It wasn’t the same story for Sydney.

The Heat bats immediately took advantage when the leagues best pitcher, Craig Anderson, was lifted from the game. Anderson gave up just a single run in six innings. He was followed by Wayne Lundgren (L, 0-1) who quickly gave up three runs in an inning of work.

That’s all the Heat needed as Brendan Wise (S, 1) shut the Blue Sox down in the ninth inning to preserve the 4-1 victory for the Heat and Anthony Claggett (W, 1-0).

Michael Ohlman (1-for-3) drove in a pair of runs on a bases loaded single in the seventh inning. Tim Kennelly (1-for-5) drove in the first run of the seventh with a RBI single. Right fielder David Amberson (0-for-3) got the scoring started in the second inning with a sacrifice fly.

Game 2 was had a little more offense as Perth defeated Sydney 8-7 holding off a late inning rally to advance to the championship round.

Perth picked up 14 hits in the game scoring their runs in bunches. It started in the top of the first with a lead off double by Corey Adamson (2-for-6/2 doubles) who would later score on a sacrifice fly. The Heat loaded the bases scoring once on the sacrifice fly and once on a RBI single by Michael Ohlman (3-for-4).

After the Blue Sox tied the game in the bottom of the second, Perth came right back to take the lead again with four runs in the top of the third. Once again they loaded the bases, and with one out Carter Bell (2-for-5) drove in two runs with a single to left field. Then things got interesting. As David Amberson (0-for-2) was striking out, Ohlman and Bell perform a double steal with Ohlman stealing home for the Heat’s third run of the inning. Sam Kennelly (1-for-5) would cap of the four run inning with a single driving home Bell.

The Heat would add two more runs an inning later to make the score 8-2. Tim Kennelly (2-for-6/3 runs) and Allan de San Miguel (1-for-4/2 RBI) both homered giving the Heat a six run lead.

Sydney would fight back and make it interesting scoring a run in the eighth inning and three more in the ninth before being turned away. With the tying runner at third base and only one out, Brendan Wise (S, 2) gets James Robbins to ground into a game ending double play.

Sydney starter Brad Thomas (L, 0-1) took the loss pitching just 3.1 innings giving up eight runs on nine hits. Thomas had been pitching lights out of late, but the Perth bats got to him early and often. Perth starter Warwick Saupold (W, 1-0) picked up the win tossing six innings giving up two runs on three hits while striking out seven.

The win puts Perth into the championship series with Canberra where they will try to win their third straight ABL title. The Cavalry will host the Heat at Narrabundah Ballpark February 8-10 in a best-of-three series.

ABL Scoreboard:

Perth Heat 4, Sydney Blue Sox 1
Perth Heat 8, Sydney Blue Sox 7
Perth wins series 2-0

ABL Championship Schedule:

Friday February 8th 7;00 pm – Perth Heat vs Canberra Cavalry
Saturday February 9th 7;00 pm – Perth Heat vs Canberra Cavalry
Sunady February 10th 7;00 pm – Perth Heat vs Canberra Cavalry

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Australia: ABL Playoffs Begin Friday with Perth Visiting Sydney

The Australian Baseball League Playoffs kick off on Friday with the first round series between the 2-time defending champion Perth Heat, who finished in 3rd place, and the 2nd place Sydney Blue Sox.

Both teams have made the playoffs each year of the new ABL with Perth winning the first two titles and Sydney finishing 3rd each time.

Sydney has done it with pitching, and pitching they have.

Starter Craig Anderson, who will start Game 1 of the series, led the league in ERA (2.10) and wins (8). Anderson isn’t a strikeout pitcher, but he gets outs. In 81.1 innings, Anderson has given up 81 hits. But he doesn’t walk anyone, giving up only 5 on the year. With a WHIP of just 1.06, he makes you earn your bases which is why he has been so successful.

However, it doesn’t end with Anderson. Also in the rotation is Chris Oxspring who has gone 4-2 in 12 starts. With an ERA of 2.71, Oxspring ranked 5th in the league. Where he differs from Anderson is that he is a strikeout pitcher. He led the league with 86 strikeouts in 79.2 innings.

Also on the league leading staff is Tim Atherton (2-1 / 2.44) and Matthew Williams (2.14) who led the league in saves with 15.

Sydney might not have the top offense in the league, but they have some really good hitters. Mitch Dening is 2nd in the league in hitting at .347, hit 5 home runs, and drove in 32 runs.

Trent D’Antonio led the team in home runs with 6 and hit .304.

The Blue Sox are right in the middle of the pack in the league in most major hitting categories.

On the other side of the field stand the 2-time defending ABL Champion Perth Heat. The Heat take a four game winning streak into the playoffs after having stumbled down the stretch.

Game 1 starter Anthony Claggett was second in the league in strikeouts with 77 in 73.1 innings. In 12 starts he went 4-5 with a 3.31 ERA. Claggett has pitched well in his last three starts and will look to continue that on Friday night.

Starter Daniel Schmidt finished 2nd in the league with 7 wins posting a 3.72 ERA. Schmidt has struggled of late posting a good start after a not so good start. He will look to return to his early season form when he was posting solid start after solid start.

In the bullpen is Brendan Wise who is 2nd on the team in saves with 3 after posting an ERA of 2.14 in 21.0 innings.

On the offensive side of the ball, the Heat is lead by outfielders David Amberson (.380), Corey Adamson (.321/1/18), catcher Allan de San Miguel (2.94/5/30), and first baseman Michael Ohlman (.317/6/27).

The two teams split their 8 games this year, but haven’t played each other since mid-December.

The two teams play a best-of-three series in Sydney with the winner advancing to face Canberra in the championship.

You can watch Game 1 online through Blue Sox TV.

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Australia: Perth Wins and Advances to the ABL Playoffs; Canberra Claims First Place

The playoff picture is now set in the ABL. The top three teams in the league advance to the playoff round with the 1st place team advancing all the way to the championship. The 2nd and 3rd place teams will play a best-of-three series with the winner advancing to the championship team.

The Canberra Cavalry clinched the Australian Baseball League regular season championship with an 11-6 win over Adelaide on Sunday afternoon. This is the first time Canberra has made the playoffs in the three year history of the reformation of the league.

The Cavalry pounded Bite pitching for 13 hits, including three home runs on Sunday to power their way to the title.

Adam Buschini (2-for-2) walked twice, scored twice, and drove in two with his league leading 15th home run of the season in the 3rd inning. Designated hitter Josh Matavesi (1-for-5) hit his first home run of the season in the 5th inning, a solo shot. And Jeremy Barnes (2-for-5) drove in four runs including two on his 7th home run of the season in the 6th inning.

Every Cavalry hitter, except for one, picked up a hit on the day. Five hitters picked up two hits as well including Ryan Stovall (2-for-5) with a pair of doubles.

Ji-Man Choi had a big day for Adelaide who are still on the outside of the playoffs looking in. Choi went 2-for-4 driving in two runs including one on his 8th home run of the year. Ben Lodge (3-for-5) scored a pair of runs and drove in another in the loss.\

Both starters lasted just 3.2 innings giving up 6 runs each. Neither factored into the decision. Steven Kent (W, 1-1) picked up the win in relief. Reed Brown (L, 0-2) took the loss.

The win gives Canberra the 1st place spot in the playoffs. They hold the tie breaker with Sydney, so they will host the championship series.

Melbourne Aces 1, Perth Heat 11

The Perth Heat advanced to the playoffs with an 11-1 victory over Melbourne on Sunday. Perth got a great start from Jack Frawley (W, 3-1) who tossed eight shutout innings allowing just three hits to earn the win. Tim Kennelly finished off the game for Perth in the 9th.

Blake Cunningham (L, 0-1) took the loss for Melbourne pitching three innings and giving up two runs.

Michael Ohlman (3-for-5), Luke Hughes (0-for-3), and Ryan Khoury (2-for-3) all drove in two runs.

Carlo Testa (3-for-4) collected three of the four Melbourne hits on the day.

Brisbane Bandits vs Sydney Blue Sox

The game in Sydney was postponed due to bad weather and will not be made up. The best Sydney could do is a tie for 1st place, but Canberra holds the tie breaker. Brisbane needed Perth to lose in order to have a shot at finishing 3rd place.

Final ABL Regular Season Standings:

1. Canberra Cavalry 27-19

2. Sydney Blue Sox 26-19

3. Perth Heat 25-21

4. Brisbane Bandits 23-22

5. Adelaide Bite 21-25

6. Melbourne Aces 15-31

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Australia: Perth Holds Destiny in Their Own Hands; Win and Advance or Lose and Go Home

On the second to last day of the season with the playoff race heating up, all three games were very important.

With a win on Saturday, the Perth Heat now hold their destiny in their own hands. Canberra and Sydney have already qualified for the playoffs with the final team to be determined on Sunday. Perth holds a one game lead on Brisbane for the final playoff spot. If they win on Sunday, they are in. However, if they lose and Brisbane wins the Bandits will advance holding the tie breaker with Perth.

Brisbane Bandits 4, Sydney Blue Sox 2

Keeping their playoff hopes alive, Brisbane came through with a huge win on Saturday. Brisbane got a great start from James Schult (W, 5-2) who tossed seven scoreless innings giving up just two hits. Justin Erasmus (S, 4) picked up the save pitching 1.1 innings of relief.

Chris Oxspring (L, 4-3) pitched well, but took the loss when his defense couldn’t help him out. Oxspring went seven innings giving up four runs (1 earned) on five hits while striking out eight.

The Bandits got all four runs in the 4th inning. After an error by the Blue Sox third baseman, C.J. Beatty (1-for-4) blasted a 2-run home run, his 7th of the season. Then later the same inning, Logan Wade (1-for-4) doubled in a pair of runs to make the score 4-0.

Brisbane is still hopeful for a playoff birth. If they end up tying for 3rd with Perth, they will hold the tie breaker.

Canberra Cavalry 12, Adelaide Bite 2

Canberra pounded Bite pitching for 15 hits including four home runs. Adam Buschini (3-for-4) got the scoring going with a 2-run home run in the top of the 1st inning. He would add his league leading 14th home run later on in the 7th inning. Marcus Knecht (2-for-4) drove in a run with a solo home run in the 5th inning, and Ryan Stovall (3-for-4) drove in three runs including two with a 2-run blast in the 7th inning. Jeremy Barnes (3-for-5) pitched in with a pair of RBI.

John Holdzkom (W, 4-3) picked up the win pitching five innings giving up just two runs on six hits. Paul Mildren (L, 2-7) took the loss giving up seven runs (5 ER) in 4.2 innings.

Melbourne Aces 2, Perth Heat 6

Perth came into the weekend struggling, but they have now taken the first three games of the series against Melbourne putting them back into the playoff hunt.

Perth kept their playoff hopes alive with a big win on Saturday. Perth got a good start from Daniel Schmidt (W, 7-3) who went 5.2 innings giving up just two runs.

Perth got on the board quickly with a 2-run home run by Luke Hughes (1-for-3) in the top of the 1st inning. David Amberson (3-for-4) doubled in a pair of runs in the 5th to extend the Perth lead to 6-1.

With a win on Sunday, Perth will qualify for the playoffs once again giving them a chance to defend their titles.

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Australia: Sydney and Canberra Clinch Playoff Birth

The Australian Baseball League playoff race continues to heat up as the weekend progresses.

The Sydney Blue Sox have a one game lead heading into the final two games of the season after routing the Brisbane Bandits 13-0 on Friday night clinching a playoff birth.

Sydney used a 5-run 4th inning to pull ahead 6-0 in the game and from there it was over. They added 4 more runs in the 6th and 3 more in the 8th on a 3-run home run by JaDamion Williams (1-for-1 / 3 RBI).

Chris Snelling (3-for-3) scored a pair of runs, while James Robbins (1-for-3) drove in 3 on the day. Zachary Penprase continued his hot hitting going 3-for-6 with a double.

On the hill, starter Brad Thomas (W, 3-2) was great going 6 innings allowing just 5 hits while striking out 8. Ryan Searle (L, 3-2) took the loss lasting just 3 innings. He gave up only 2 hits, but he walked 5 giving up 5 runs.

The back-to-back loses have dropped Brisbane into 4th place in the league on the verge of being dropped out of the playoffs.

Canberra, now a game out of 1st place, needed a win to keep pace with Sydney, and they got just that on Friday night topping Adelaide 8-7.

Canberra did it with power too hitting three home runs. In the top of the 1st, Jack Murphy (2-for-4) hit a 3-run shot, his 5th of the year, to give the Cavalry a 3-0 lead. Then with the scored tied at 3 in the 4th inning, Jeremy Barnes (1-for-4) hit a solo shot to give Canberra the lead once again. An inning later, Adam Buschini (3-for-5) put the game away with a 3-run bomb of his own.

Adelaide tried to fight back each time but fell short in the end. Ji-man Choi (2-for-4) hit his 7th home run of the year in the 2nd inning, a solo shot. Quincy Latimore added his 3rd in the 7th inning, another solo shot.

Robert Dickmann (W, 4-4) benefited from all the run support provided by his teammates picking up the win. Dickmann went 5 innings giving up 6 runs on 9 hits. Sean Toler (S, 11) picked up his 11th save finishing off the game.

Bite starter Gary Owens (L, 0-1) lasted just 4.2 innings giving up 7 runs on 6 hits including 3 home runs to take the loss.

With the win, Canberra clinches a playoff birth and still has a chance to finish in 1st place.

The final game of the night featured two-time defending champion Perth Heat against the Melbourne Aces. Perth had struggled coming into the weekend but won the fist game of the series. They would follow suit in game 2 with a 11-3 win.

Warwick Saupold (W, 1-1) picked up the win pitching 7 innings allowing just 3 runs on 9 hits. He was backed up by a Heat offense that pounded out 10 hits taking advantage of 3 Melbourne errors.

Allan de San Miguel hit his 7th home run of the season in the 8 run 7th inning Perth put up. Perth was trailing 3-1 heading into the 7th inning when the bats came alive. Perth put together an inning with a home run, 2 doubles, 3 singles, 5 walks, and a wild pitch to score 8 runs and put the game out of reach.

Kevin Reese (L, 2-6) took the loss lasting just 6.1 innings giving up 5 runs. He was relieved in the 7th inning by Kable Hogben who lasted just a third of an inning after giving up 4 runs including the 3-run home run.

ABL Scoreboard

Brisbane Bandits 0, Sydney Blue Sox 13

Canberra Cavalry 8, Adelaide Bite 7

Melbourne Aces 3, Perth Heat 11

Current ABL Standings

1. *Sydney Blue Sox 26-18

2. *Canberra Cavalry 25-19

3. Perth Heat 23-21

4. Adelaide Bite 21-23

5. Melbourne Aces 15-29

*clinched playoff birth

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Australia: Playoff Races Heat Up in Last Weekend of the ABL Regular Season

The final weekend of the ABL season kicked off on Thursday with five teams pushing to make the four team playoffs. Heading into the weekend the Brisbane Bandits and the Sydney Blue Sox were in the hunt for first place.

In the first game of the series, Sydney got the better of Brisbane winning 6-2. The Blue Sox used a 5 run 3rd inning to pull out the victory and take a 1 game lead in the standings over Canberra.

The middle of the order for Sydney really came through with the 2-5 hitters all pitching in with 2 hits apiece. James Robbins (2-for-4) doubled twice and drove in 2 runs. Shortstop Zachary Penprase drove in a pair of runs as well.

Craig Anderson (W, 8-2) tossed 7 innings giving up just 2 runs (1 ER) on 5 hits to help Sydney to the win. It was his league leading 8th win of the season and lowered his ERA to a league second best 2.10.

Chuck Lofgren (L, 4-3) took the loss for Brisbane giving up 5 runs in 5 innings of work.

The two teams will square off again on Friday night in game 2 of the 4-game series.

The two-time defending champion Perth Heat have been struggling of late dropping to 4th place in the standings and on the verge of falling out of the playoffs all together. However, they got a huge win on Thursday night that might just propel them into the playoffs.

Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the 9th to the Melbourne Aces, Perth staged a comeback scoring twice on a walk-off single by Corey Adamson (2-for-5) to win the game.

Both starters pitched well but neither factored into the decision. Heat starter Anthony Claggett tossed 6 innings giving up 2 runs on 8 hits while striking out 14.  Aces starter Lewis Thorpe pitched just as well going 5.1 innings allowing just 1 run on 3 hits.

Brenden Wise (W, 2-1) picked up the win pitching the final two innings in relief. Zachary Arneson (L, 1-2) blew his second save and took the loss for Melbourne.

James Beresford had a big day for the Aces in the loss going 3-for-3 with a double, a run scored, and a RBI.

With the win and a Brisbane loss, Perth is now tied for 3rd place in the standings with 3 games to play. Melbourne is the only team that has been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs.

The last match up for the weekend is Canberra against Adelaide. Canberra started the weekend tied for first with Sydney in the standings. Adelaide is the team on the outside looking in currently in 5th place. However, they are only a game out of a playoff spot.

In their first game of the series, the Adelaide Bite got a pair of home runs from third baseman Stefan Welch (2-for-4 /3 RBI) and a stellar performance from starter Dushan Ruzic (W, 5-2).

Welch put the Bite on the board in the 2nd with a solo shot giving them a 1-0 lead. Then with the game tied at 2 in the bottom of the 8th, Welch connected again. This time it was a 2-run shot that gave the Bite the win.

Ruzic pitched 8 strong innings allowing just 2 runs on 6 hits while striking out 5. Andrew Kittredge (S, 6) picked up the save pitching the 9th.

Brian Grening started and pitched well for Canberra, but didn’t factor into the decision lasting just 6 innings giving up 2 runs. Reliever Brodie Downs (L, 0-1) took the loss.

Josh Cakebread picked up 3 hits in 4 at bats for the Bite in the win, and Aaron Sloan hit a 2-run home run for the Cavalry.

The loss drops Canberra a game out of first place. Adelaide is still one game out of a playoff spot with three to play.

ABL Scoreboard

Brisbane Bandits 2, Sydney Blue Sox 6

Canberra Cavalry 3, Adelaide Bite 4

Melbourne Aces 3, Perth Heat 4

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Australia: Heading into Final Weekend Five Teams Alive in Playoff Hunt

The Australian Baseball League is down to one final weekend of play before the playoffs, and four of the five teams are still in the hunt for a birth.

This past weekend the two top teams in the league faced off with one another splitting a four game set. Sydney jumped out in Game 1 with a 12-8 victory. Sydney pounded out 17 hits en route to the win. Trent D’Antonio went 5-for-6 driving in 4 runs and scoring 4 more. In the 3rd inning he blasted a 3-run home run, his fifth of the season. Mitch Dening added 4 hits of his own.

Craig Anderson (W, 7-2)  picked up the win going 6 innings allowing 7 runs (5 earned). Brian Grening (L, 4-2) took the loss lasting only 3 innings.

Canberra hit 3 home runs in the loss including one from Jeremy Barnes’  5th, Marcus Knecht’s  4th, and Kody Hightower’s 5th.

Canberra bounced back in Game 2 battling back from a 7-2 deficit to pull out an 8-7 win. Trent D’Antonio went deep for his 5th home run of the season driving in 2. Geoffrey Klein added 3 hits of his own driving in a run. Sean Toler (W, 2-0) picked up the win in relief.

In the loss, Michael Wells went 4-for-5, and Antonio Callaway homered. Adam Buschini hit his league leading 11th home run in the 7th, a 3-run shot.

Game 3 was a runaway win for Sydney who jumped out to a 4-run lead and never looked back winning 10-2. Mitch Dening had another big game driving in 4 runs going 3-for-5 a home run shy of the cycle. Brad Thomas (W, 2-2) went 6 innings allowing 2 runs to pick up the win.

Down a game in the standings, Canberra needed 12 innings to win and put the two teams in a tie for first. John Holdzkom pitched well going 6 innings striking out 7 and not allowing a run. Ryan Stovall had a big game going 3-for-5 hitting a 2-run home run and scoring 3 runs.

Sydney Blue Sox 12, Canberra Cavalry 8
Sydney Blue Sox 7, Canberra Cavalry 8
Sydney Blue Sox 10, Canberra Cavalry 2
Sydney Blue Sox 3,  Canberra Cavalry 4

In the match for third place, the Perth Heat and the Brisbane Bandits squared off in a weekend series. Perth took the first game and went up two games in the standings over Brisbane. After being held scoreless for the first six innings, Perth got on the board with a run in the 7th to make it 3-1. Then in the 8th they busted out for 4 more runs. Brenden Webb hit a home run, his 5th, in the 7th inning. Anthony Claggett (W, 4-5) picked up the win pitching 7 innings allowing only 3 runs. Brendan Wise (S, 3) picked up the save pitching the last 2 innings in releif.

However, that’s all Perth could manage in the weekend. On Saturday the two teams played a double header with Brisbane taking both games. In the first game of the day, James Schult (W, 3-2) pitched 6 shutout innings allowing only 2 hits, while Justin Erasmus (S, 2) picked up the save. The two teams combined for only 5 total hits.

The 2nd half of the double header wasn’t as close at it appeared. Brisbane won 8-5 but Perth needed a 4-run 9th inning to make it close. Brisbane powered its way past the Heat as David Sutherland (1st), C.J. Beatty (5th), and Ryan Battaglia (4th) all hit home runs. Daniel Schmidt (L, 6-3) took the loss, while Ryan Searle (W, 3-1) picked up the win pitching 8 innings allowing just 1 run.

In the final game of the weekend series, Brisbane once again took down Perth 8-2 to stretch their 3rd place lead to 2 games over Perth. Rhys Niit (W, 2-0) picked up the win pitching 6 innings and Rory Rhodes (3-for-5) and Logan Wade (1-for-3) each drove in a pair of runs.

Perth Heat 5, Brisbane Bandits 4
Perth Heat 0, Brisbane Bandits 2 (7)
Perth Heat 5, Brisbane Bandits 8
Perth Heat 2, Brisbane Bandits 8

In the other action of the weekend, Adelaide faced off with Melbourne with the two teams splitting the series. Adelaide won the final two games to stay within 4 games out of first place and only 1 game out of a playoff spot.

Adelaide Bite 2, Melbourne Aces 3
Adelaide Bite 2, Melbourne Aces 8
Adelaide Bite 12, Melbourne Aces 6
Adelaide Bite 9, Melbourne Aces 0

ABL Standings

1. Canberra Cavalry 24-18

2. Sydney Blue Sox 24-18

3. Brisbane Bandits 22-20

4. Perth Heat 21-21

5. Adelaide Bite 20-22

6. Melbourne Aces 15-27

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