Thursday, February 26, 2015

1979 APBA Baseball Tournament (A.L. - Round 1)

As you know from my post "We Are (APBA) Family" that I am doing a 1979 APBA Baseball Tournament. Let's check out the brackets for both leagues, shall we...

The Baltimore Orioles and California Angels have the top seeds due to being involved in the real-life 1979 American League Championship. The other teams were ranked by their Pythagorean Records.

In the N.L. Bracket, the setup is a bit different due to less teams, the top two seeds are the two 1979 National League Championship teams, the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Cincinnati Reds. The rest are ranked once again, by Pythagorean Records -- but in this setup, there are two other teams with first-round byes in #3 Montreal Expos and #4 St. Louis Cardinals.


#12 Seattle Mariners vs. #5 New York Yankees

The Mariners had their work cutout for them against the Yankees. Seattle only had two APBA Grade C pitchers on their whole entire staff, and that was Game 1 starter Mike Parrott and their reliever/starter Shane Rawley ('D' SP). The Yankees spanked the Mariners in the first game, 11-1 -- 6 of their runs were on two three-run homers, one by Jim Spencer and the other by Lou Piniella. Piniella went 4-for-4 that game with 3 singles, (including the HR), a walk & 4 RBI, scoring 4 runs; He would also add 2 more hits & 2 more RBI in the second & series-deciding Game 2. Willie Randolph got things started with a lead-off solo HR, Bobby Murcer and Jerry Narron also hit HR's that game.

Rod Guidry got the complete-game victory in Game 1 (allowing 7 hits), with 6 K's. The second game was not as easy for Tommy John as the 7-1 final score might indicate. John found himself on the ropes a few times in his 5 innings of work, a few times with bases loaded, yet he always found the right pitch to get him out of the inning. The Mariners had 10 hits & were walked 7 times in the second game (all 7 walks from John) -- yet, they could only manage one run! Willie Horton and Bruce Bochte led the team in hits that series, with 3 each -- including a solo HR by Horton in Game 1. The Yankees got by with ease, for most part, as predicted.

#10 Chicago White Sox vs. #7 Minnesota Twins

Game 1 was a pitchers' duel between the White Sox' Ken Kravec and the Twins' Jerry Koosman, both teams not scoring a run until the White Sox scored in the top of the 6th on a RBI single by Lamar Johnson. The unfortunate thing for Chicago, the wheels fell off Kravec's performance as the Twins' catcher Butch Wynegar smacked a two-run double in the bottom of the 7th. Chicago's reliever Ed Farmer two batters later, gave a two-run blast to Hosken Powell. It would set the tone for the rest of the series, the Twins outhit White Sox 21-11 in the two games, as the Twins won Game 1, 5-1 & Game 2, 7-2. Bombo Rivera had 2 doubles & 3 RBI in second game -- while Wynegar went 4-for-6 in the series, that included a double, 3 RBI & a walk.

#14 Oakland Athletics vs #3 Boston Red Sox

The Oakland Athletics' Rick Langford kept the A's in the game as best as he could, but could get no support from his offense. The Red Sox, with a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the 6th would get an insurance run with a solo homer run by Carlton Fisk off of Langford. Tom Burgmeier locks down the 8th & 9th for the Red Sox with 2 K's. Mike Torrez gets the win, pitching 7 solid innings, striking out four, while allowing only 5 hits, a walk & one run.

The second game was never close as the Red Sox jump to an 8-0 first inning lead, capped off with a grand slam by #9 hitter 3B- Butch Hobson. Hobson would go 2-for-5, with 6 RBI. Carl Yastrzemski, at age 40, collects four singles with a ribbie -- while Bob Watson also collects 4 singles, with 2 RBI. Jim Rice makes a run at the cycle, finishing a double short (3-for-5), with 3 RBI & 3 runs. Fred Lynn and Rick Burleson each add 3 hits as well. The pitching by Dennis Eckersley was just as brilliant as he pitched a complete game shut-out of Oakland, allowing only 4 hits, with 4 K's & 3 walks. Steve McCatty was handed the loss, pitching only one inning (plus 2 batters faced in second), allowing 9 hits & 9 runs with a walk.

The Red Sox in Game 2 -- boasted 4 MLB Hall of Famers in Carl Yastrzemski, Carlton Fisk, Dennis Eckersley & Jim Rice. The Red Sox collected 33 hits, while the Athletics managed only 9 hits in the two games, while being outscored 17-1.

#11 Cleveland Indians vs. #6 Texas Rangers

Paxton got the call in Game 2.
The Cleveland Indians sent Rick Wise (C-Z) to face off against Fergie Jenkins (C-YZ), Wise would outperform the future Hall of Famer going 7 scoreless innings until allowing a few runs in the 8th. The Rangers had a hard time getting anything going in their lineup, while Wise's teammates helped him out. Toby Harrah would be a catalyst in the Indians' two biggest innings (the 3rd & 4th innings) with a two-run single & two-run double -- which led to 10 runs in the two innings, and a quick 11-0 lead after 4 innings. Jenkins only lasted 3.2 innings with 5 hits & 5 runs (4 earned) allowed, with a K & 3 walks. John Henry Johnson did no better, allowing 5 hits & 5 runs in just a third-of-an-inning of work. Bobby Bonds did something interesting in which I will find a hard time in my history of APBA, drawing 4 walks in his first 4 plate appearances, he then added a single & RBI double, reaching all 6 times at the plate! Mel Ott has drawn 4 walks for me in a single-game once, but not sure if I remember first 4 times up -- Bonds scored 3 times from those 4 walks. Richie Manning had 4 runs, Andre Thornton went 2-for-5, with a double, single, sac fly & 4 RBI. Cliff Johnson hit a two-run HR, while Jim Norris had three singles & 3 runs. The Indians win 14-3, on 17 hits, while Texas scored only 3 runs on 9 hits.

The Rangers sent Steve Comer (B-Z) to the mound, while the Indians decided to hold off Rick Waits (C) for a possible Game 3 -- so they went with Mike Paxton (D-Z). Once again, the Rangers have a difficult time scoring in the first seven innings! The Indians had no problem, scoring on a two-run single by LF- Ron Pruitt in the first, Andre Thornton added two solo HR's in the 3rd & 7th, giving him 6 RBI for which resulted in a two-game sweep. Mike Hargrove went 2-for-5 with 2 RBI, while Bobby Bonds went 3-for-5 with a three-run HR, plus two stolen bases (5-for-7, 5 RBI & 4 runs in the two games combined). Paxton (improved to an A starter by 8th inning) pitched excellent through 8 innings, allowing 8 hits, 2 runs, while striking out only three.

The Indians outscored the Rangers, 23-5 on 27 hits; Rangers had 17 hits, but could not do much with those base-runners. Rangers' only highlights was a three-run HR by Richie Zisk in Game 1 & a two-run HR by Mickey Rivers in the second game.

#13 Toronto Blue Jays vs. #4 Milwaukee Brewers

Their lineup is too big for this yearbook.
The Blue Jays sent Tom Underwood (C-Y) to the mound to face Mike Caldwell (B-Z) and the Brew Crew. Rico Carty helped the Jays strike first, with an RBI single in the first; The Jays added to the fight with 3 runs in the second, scoring an extra run on a error by Sixto Lezcano in right. The Blue Jays added another run in the top of the 4th, with an RBI double by Rick Bosetti.

The Brewers' bats were ice-cold entering the bottom of the 5th, reaching base 5 times on only one hit (a single), two walks & two errors. Underwood looked to have control of the ball game, until a barrage of hits & runs in the bottom of the 5th: A lead-off single by Robin Yount, followed up by RBI double from Charlie Moore, RBI triple by Paul Molitor, Sal Bando flies out & fails to advance Molitor from third, Cecil Cooper steps up with RBI double, Gorman Thomas draws walk, Ben Oglivie smacks a RBI single to right, Sixto Lezcano draws a walk, Don Money hits into a fielder's choice (failed double-play attempt by defense) while Thomas scores -- suddenly the game was tied. Yount finishes the inning, flying out for out number three.

Carty put a spark into the series.
The bottom of the 6th, Paul Molitor would score on a sac fly by Cecil Cooper. Toronto's offense goes quiet with only one hit after 5 innings. Jerry Augustine comes in the last two innings for the Brewers, closing out a game that Toronto had in its hands. A 6-5 close-call, good comeback victory for the Brewers in Game 1. Mike Caldwell calmed down his last three innings, for a 7-inning performance that surrendered 11 hits, 4 earned runs, with 1 K & no walks -- earning the win.

Entering Game 2, it had the same look as Boston against Oakland, a potent lineup ready to snack on a D-starter in Phil Huffman. The Brewers sent Larry Sorensen (C-Z) to the mound. The Brewers jumped to a 3-0 lead, thanks to Cecil Cooper's two-run triple, which he then scored off of Gorman Thomas's sac fly. The Jays answered back as Larry Sorensen filled the sacks, only to walk Rico Carty to force in a run, and another run scoring off of John Mayberry's sac-fly.

With a 4-3 lead entering the top of the 7th, Cecil Cooper tagged up on Ben Oglivie's fly to left, to put a commanding 5-3 lead. The Brewers once again went with Jerry Augustine to close the game out for the last two innings; With one out he walked Rick Bosetti, and threw up a mistake pitch that allowed Roy Howell to tie the game up with a two-run blast. The game would go to the bottom of the 10th, as Augustine would give up a walk-off HR to Rico Carty in front of the Exhibition Stadium crowd. Series tied, 1-1.

In Game 3, the Jays call on one of their future stars in Dave Stieb (D), as the Milwaukee Brewers go with dependable Jim Slaton (C-Z) in front of a packed Milwaukee crowd. The Blue Jays would strike first with a run in the first inning on four hits, it would be the last time they led. The Jays would manage 11 hits, but could not score their base-runners in, as they managed two runs. Slaton goes 6 innings, 8 hits & 2 runs allowed, with 4 K's & a walk. Stieb would pitch 4.2 innings, allowing 8 hits, 7 runs (6 earned) with 2 K's, no walks. The Brewers got it done with the long-ball... Charlie Moore's three-run HR in the bottom of the second, gave Milwaukee a 4-1 lead, Gorman Thomas would tack on a solo HR in the third. Paul Molitor hit a HR on Milwaukee's first at-bat in the first, while a 4th HR in the game for the Brewers happened in the 8th, a three-run HR by Cecil Cooper. A strong 13-2 finish for the three-game series. Milwaukee moves on, as Toronto thinks about it's Game 1 stumble to the Brewers.

#9 Kansas City Royals vs. #8 Detroit Tigers

Double Trouble: George Brett & Hal McRae of the Royals.
The Royals are the under-dog due to the rankings of their Pythagorean records, but lets face it, the  Detroit Tigers are the real under-dogs considering how much of a force these Kansas City Royals have been in the 1970's -- they still relatively have the same players & characters from their teams that battled for a league championship with the New York Yankees

Game 1 had Paul Splittorff of the Royals, facing Jack Morris of the Tigers. Splittorff showed he didn't have his stuff, allowing 8 hits & 7 runs (6 earned) in only 3.2 innings of work. Morris did much better, good enough to go 7 innings, allowing 6 hits, 4 runs with 4 K's. The Tigers got rolling on a three-run HR by Lance Parrish in the bottom of the 2nd. Ron LeFlore went 3-for-3, with 2 triples, RBI & steal, while drawing two walks. Parrish added an double & RBI single, plus stolen base in four at-bats for the night. Lou Whitaker had a two-run single. Frank White was the star for Kansas City, going 2-for-4 with a two-run HR & double (two runs for the night). Tigers win 8-4.

Jason Thompson got the Tigers started early with a two-run single in the top of the first in K.C. off of Game 2 starter Dennis Leonard, giving them a 3-0 lead. The Royals answered back in the bottom-half with a two-run single by Al Cowens & two-run double by Pete LaCock, giving K.C. a 4-3 lead. Detroit would tie it up with an RBI single by Ron Leflore in the second inning, up to this point, has reached base all 7 times at the plate, on four hits & 3 walks -- he also had 3 stolen bases for the Tigers already.

Impressive stolen base career for Ron LeFlore from 1974-1980.
Hal McRae got the Royals rolling with a two-run HR in the bottom of the 2nd, to give the Royals, a 6-4 lead -- they would add 5 runs over the next four innings, to make it 11-4. The Tigers would threaten a bit later with a two-run single by Alan Trammell in the 8th, cutting the lead to 11-7, but the Royals would hold on to tie the series, 1-1. Trammell had 3 hits & a steal for Detroit. Darrell Porter went 3-for-4, with a late two-run HR (6th inning), for a total of 3 RBI.

The decisive Game 3 in Detroit, with Larry Gura (Kansas City) vs Jack Billingham (Detroit), both APBA C-Z pitchers. The Tigers get off to a 4-0 lead, showcased by Lance Parrish's two-run double in the bottom of the 4th. The Royals answer back with another two-run HR by Hal McRae, George Brett would hit a one-out double & get driven in by Al Cowens, cutting it to a one-run lead for Detroit. George Brett's two-run single in the 6th would give the Royals a 5-4 lead. The Royals would tack on a few more runs in the 7th, as Jack Billingham is sent packing with 6.1 innings of work, that allowed 13 hits, 7 runs, 3 walks, while only striking out two. The Tigers called on Aurelio Lopez to try to prevent any more runs from crossing, as they now trail 7-4.

The Royals' Gura was effective for 6 innings, allowing 4 runs, so K.C. tries to go another inning with him, which ends up being a mistake. Gura walks the lead-off runner in Aurelio Rodriguez, Lou Whitaker would hit him in on a RBI double, Steve Kemp draws a walk, Champ Summers reaches on a rare Frank White error, loading the bases. Jason Thompson would hit a grand slam, to give the Tigers a 9-7 lead in the bottom of the 7th. The Royals once again, bounce back with back-to-back doubles by Pete LaCock & Frank White in the top of the 9th, White would tie it up on a ground-out by Freddie Patek.
"Sweet Lou" comes through for Detroit.

The game goes extras, Frank White singles to lead off the 11th, and then is thrown out stealing second -- he argues with the umpire, and gets tossed. Freddie Patek follows with a single, and Willie Wilson smacks him in on a RBI double, Wilson's 4th hit, 2nd double & 2nd RBI of the game -- he also reached on a walk. With only one out, and a man on second, the dangerous Hal McRae & Amos Otis fail to score in another run -- entering the bottom of the 11th, with a 10-9 lead.

Al Hrabosky who has pitched three solid innings for the Royals, comes out & walks the lead-off man, Aurelio Rodriguez. The Tigers go to the bench for Tom Brookens to pinch-run for Rodriguez. Alan Trammell hits a clutch RBI double, scoring in Brookens to tie the game once again, 10-10. Ron LeFlore strikes out for the first out. The Royals call on Paul Splittorff (their Game 1 starter) to come out of the bullpen, Hrabosky went 3.1 innings in relief, allowing 3 hits, a run, with 3 K's & a walk. Splittorff will face Lou Whitaker, as Whitaker hits a double into the gap to score in Trammell, the winning run! A walk-off in Motown! Detroit moves on to face the #1 seed Baltimore Orioles.

A.L. First-Round Results

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

12 Seconds of Glory

Alex Cobb of the Panthers.
So a few weeks ago, we had a no-hitter take place for Jordan Zimmerman of the Buffalo Yankees, no-hitting the Boston Bravos (their second time to be no-hit during the season). Zimmermann's no-hitter took place on July 8th, 2014.

Then two weeks later to the day, on the 22nd, Travis Wood for the Hannibal Cavemen was pitching a no-hitter against the San Diego Heroes. He was 8 innings & 2 outs through with a no-no in the works, when the Heroes pinch-hit Erik Kratz for Alex Avila -- Kratz sent a solo HR over the center-field wall, breaking it up.

This past series, I was playing an inter-league series against the tough Fairgrove Tigers, the series was 3-1 in favor of Fairgrove, and I just lost the 5th game of a 6th game series -- in which my team with a 3-2 lead blew the save & the game. Disgusted with my team's performance, I decided to simulate my last game, letting my micro-manager play it out. Turned out to be a 12-second simulation in which my Traverse City Panthers won 12-0, right away the scoreboard reflected 0 0 0 for the Fairgrove Tigers on the scoreboard under R H E -- A no-hitter was made, our league's 5th no-hitter (3rd this season) by Alex Cobb of the Panthers, it wasn't exactly a pretty one with 5 walks, but he accomplished the feat regardless. The no-hitter took place on August 1st, 2014 on our schedule.

So I guess it goes to show, even if you are frustrated with your team, you might want to play it, then again... maybe it would never have happened as well.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Nothing Amazing in April

Babe Ruth & Josh Gibson discussing baseball.
Wait, nothing amazing happens in April?!

Well, no... that's not necessarily true. We have the wonderful game of Major League Baseball back in full scale, while most APBA Baseball leagues are kicking off their individual seasons. The MWBL will be in full-swing & the BoS should be in the playoffs at that point.

There will unfortunately be no "Amazing April Tournament" being conducted by me, this season -- It will return next season (I may do a special October tournament, depending on what's going on at that time).

The reasons are a plenty, I have too much going on these next couple months...

  • The 2015 MWBL Draft (which was just done this past Saturday), not to mention all the preparation & studying that takes up the months leading up to it -- my wife is truly an amazing person for being so understanding, and patient with me. I've mentioned it before with studying the game or preparing for drafts, I will be as determined & motivated that of a Tony Gwynn or Greg Maddux --in the way they always studied video, I truly take it to another level.
  • The Greater Michigan APBA Baseball Tournament on March 7th in Jackson, Michigan. The Tournament will be hosted by my friend, Pastor Rich Zawadzki -- who is no stranger to us on the APBA Facebook Group. It will be a blast, can't wait to see some of the faces & friends that I've already met at Chicagoland -- looking forward to meeting some other Facebook friends in person there in Jackson, along with new faces & new friends to be, at this event. I will also be attending this event with my brother Christopher Baier, which will be a cool experience in its own right.
  • The Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League (BoS) will be conducting the playoffs for our 2nd season, the 2014 BoS Season -- this April. Currently the South Shore Fighting Imps, the defending World Champs, are leading their division. The Fairgrove Tigers have been on a roll & are looking to return to the playoffs, while the Portland Microbrewers (last year's National League Champions) appear by first glance, the team to beat. It should be a fun ride! Then there is the off-season, in which hopefully we are running the 3rd season no later than June!
  • I need to get my 2014 Transactions League wrapped up, in time for the 2015 Transactions League to get started.
  • Than there is the normal blogging on the upcoming 2015 MLB Season, predictions & etc.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

BoS Power Rankings (June 2014)

Bumgarner & the Fairgrove Tigers are clicking, while they get into the 2014 title mix.

BoS Power Rankings for Month #3 (May 28th - July 3rd)

 Biggest Jump (Placement): Four teams jumped upward two places, the South Shore Fighting Imps made big improvements last month, they started the month by clobbering Traverse City at home, winning their series 5-1 -- which set the tone for them as they went 24-10, since their 31-22 start. The Hannibal Cavemen caught fire, sweeping their last opponent Seattle, to take first place away from the Traverse. The King Road Kings and Urbana Locomotives, also move up two spots, while playing .500 or better ball of late.

Here is the top 7 teams record-wise for the last month
1. Fairgrove (25-9)
2. South Shore (24-10)
3. Hannibal (23-11)
4. San Diego (18-16)
4. Swatara (18-16)
4. Urbana (18-16)
5. King Road (17-17)

Biggest Jump (Points): The King Road Kings' pitching has really come around, which has helped matters in where they stand compared to the league -- the unfortunate thing is that they could not gain any ground on San Diego during this stretch, even though the Power Rankings indicate that San Diego is treading water, while King Road has almost a 20 pt advantage on the Heroes.

Staying Steady: The rankings from #9-#12 in the Holland Hitchhikers, Buffalo Yankees, San Diego Heroes & Chicago Nine show their statistical performances to be staying steady, while Holland's and Chicago's records reflect they are sliding; Holland is 14-20 the last month, while Chicago was 13-21.

Biggest Drop (Placement): The Seattle Rainiers dropped three spots to 15th (out of 16) on the Power Rankings, while the Traverse City Panthers dropped 2 spots -- T.C.'s batting has been a big reason for it's decline.

Biggest Drop (Points): Once again the Rainers & Panthers, both dropping 15.5 points -- The Panthers fell below the 100 point level for first time this season, with two consecutive months of them slipping on this chart (a total of 3 places, while losing 19.5 points). The good news for the Rainiers, there is always Boston below them.

Teams to Watch: The Fairgrove Tigers (a league-best 25-9 since May 27th) in the American League, that is led by Cy Young candidate Madison Bumgarner (14-3, 2.09 ERA) is on pace for 26 victories -- to put it in perspective, he only had 13 victories the same season for the Giants. On the National League side of things, the Hannibal Cavemen just snuck past the Panthers, and taken control of the division at the All-Star break.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

1989 MWWL Regular Season Comes to End

The regular season of the Mid-West Winter League has come to an end. It could have not come any sooner for my poor Traverse City Tigers who crashed from first to last over the 1989 season; Going from 96-66 to 56-106 -- a forty game difference!

Enough about my team for now (that's for another post), The Fort Worth Panthers won the American League East from last year's World Champions, the Chicago Demolition. Last season, the Demolition won the division by 40 games, this year they will still go to the playoffs as one of the A.L. Wild Card teams, with a 105-57 record. The Panthers won the east by 7 games, going 112-50. The Demolition will be shooting for their 3rd World Title in four years, they won it all in 1986 & 1988 -- and their 4th overall (The won their first in 1972).

The Panthers are no strangers to playoff success, they won three straight World Championships in the MWWL from 1982-1984 -- The only team to three-peat in the history of the league.

With all of the off-season moves by both the Detroit Stars and Mexico City Chihuahuas, it's not a surprise that they were the top two teams in the American League West. Detroit (106-56) edged Mexico City (104-58) by 2 games for the division title. The Stars won their 5th Division title, first in 4 years -- their 106 wins was the most since their peak-era late 70's teams, in which they won three straight divisions (1977-1979). They went to the World Series in 1978 & 1979 -- winning it all in 1978 over the Long Beach Titans. The Chihuahuas return to the playoffs after a one-year hiatus, and their best season in franchise history.

In the National League, the battles for the division titles were not anywhere as close as the American League teams. The Manhattan Gas Hornets won their third straight division title, by winning the N.L. East with a 111-51 record. The N.L. West was won by the Steel City Sluggers with a MWWL best record of 117-45. For the Sluggers, it was their second consecutive division title; Manhattan will be trying for their 2nd MWWL title in 3 years.

The race for the two National League Wild Cards is where the excitement was, as it came between three to four teams. In the end, the N.L. East's Valdosta Bombers (94-68) and N.L. West's Clovis Cougars (93-69) moved on to the playoffs, as the Michigan Marauders (N.L. East) just missed out at 92-70 -- with the Germantown Grays further back at 83-79. The Cougars had their most successful season in their three-year history, improving each year.

There was six 100-game winners & six 100-game losers during the season.

The A.L. Division Series Matchups
Chicago Demolition @ Detroit Stars
Mexico City Chihuahuas @ Fort Worth Panthers

The N.L. Division Series Matchups
Clovis Cougars @ Steel City Sluggers
Valdosta Bombers @ Manhattan Gas Hornets

Monday, February 16, 2015

2014 BoS All-Star Break League Leaders

Here is the League Leaders for the entire organization of the Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League, I forgot to unbold some names before clipping & pasting (so forgive me). 

The second half should be interesting to see who will be taking the hardware for the yearly award winners for the league. Some of these guys have been constants all year, such as Madison Bumgarner, who should be right near the top with his team doing so well.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Zimmermann No-Hits Bravos

Jordan Zimmermann of the Buffalo Yankees, became the 4th player in the history of the Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League to pitch a no-hitter. It's the 4th in it's short league history, that has been around for only a season-and-a-half.

Zimmermann pitched the no-hitter on Saturday evening (real-time on February 7th) against the Boston Bravos; Its the 2nd time this season that the Bravos have been no-hit, the first came early in the season for Matt Cain of the Brooklyn Mets.

Of all the no-hitters, a "Perfect Game" has only happened once & that was Scott Diamond of the South Shore Fighting Imps (against Washington). Justin Verlander became the first pitcher to do it, on May 10th, 2013 against the Bronx Bombers.

Another interesting fact, is that all four of the No-Hitters were conducted by American League teams, also the victims (the ones to be no-hit) were also American League teams. Another note, three of the four pitchers (Verlander, Cain & Zimmermann) all pitched no-hitters in Major League Baseball as well.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The 2nd Annual BoS All-Star Game

Welcome to the west coast, as we are getting ready for The 2nd Annual Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League All-Star Game -- Otherwise, known as the 2nd Annual BoS All-Star Game, here in beautiful Seattle, Washington!

Last season, the American League won big in a 7-1 onslaught, led by the Washington Filibusters' Carlos Beltran's Grand Slam in front of his home team's crowd in Washington at Nationals Park. The Filibusters are no more, as they moved to Swatara & have become the Swatara Eliminators, while Beltran got traded to the World Champion South Shore Fighting Imps.

Beltran won't be in this game, in fact, many guys from last year's game will not be in attendance tonight, as both teams send a combined 45 new comers to the Mid-Summer Classic, that is a 75% difference.

Let's first look at the starting lineup for the visiting American League...

AMERICAN LEAGUE All-Stars - Starting Lineup
1. LF - Jacoby Ellsbury (CHI)
.286 AVG, 6 HR, 33 RBI, 61 SB   .752 OPS
2. 2B - Robinson Cano (BRX)
.254 AVG, 11 HR, 44 RBI   .756 OPS
3. 3B - Miguel Cabrera (BUF)
.286 AVG, 22 HR, 54 RBI   .924 OPS
4. 1B - Paul Goldschmidt (FAIR)
.278 AVG, 26 HR, 65 RBI, 9 SB   .943 OPS
5. RF - Shin-Soo Choo (S.S.)
.263 AVG, 14 HR, 54 RBI, 7 SB   .828 OPS
6. CF - Adam Jones (FAIR)
.295 AVG, 20 HR, 64 RBI, 6 SB   .858 OPS
7. C - Carlos Santana (BRX)
.238 AVG, 15 HR, 59 RBI   .761 OPS
8. DH - Victor Martinez (SWAT)
.293 AVG, 12 HR, 42 RBI   .819 OPS
9. SS - Ian Desmond (SWAT)
.285 AVG, 14 HR, 45 RBI, 10 SB   .826 OPS

SP - Madison Bumgarner (FAIR)
14-3, 2.09 ERA, 135 K's   .975 WHIP

NATIONAL LEAGUE All-Stars - Starting Lineup
1. LF - Carlos Gonzalez (POR)
.254 AVG, 15 HR, 47 RBI, 9 SB   .810 OPS
2. CF - Mike Trout (POR)
.313 AVG, 14 HR, 54 RBI, 10 SB   .957 OPS
3. 3B - Adrian Beltre (URB)
.286 AVG, 16 HR, 55 RBI   .833 OPS
4. DH - Edwin Encarnacion (SD)
.287 AVG, 20 HR, 59 RBI   .928 OPS
5. SS - Troy Tulowitzki (HAN)
.306 AVG, 16 HR, 41 RBI   .930 OPS
6. RF - Michael Cuddyer (KING)
.327 AVG, 12 HR, 35 RBI   .912 OPS
7. 1B - Freddie Freeman (POR)
.331 AVG, 16 HR, 69 RBI   .944 OPS
8. C - Buster Posey (HAN)
.238 AVG, 8 HR, 33 RBI   .705 OPS
9. 2B - Jason Kipnis (POR)
.257 AVG, 7 HR, 25 RBI, 13 SB   .726 OPS

SP - Anibal Sanchez (POR)
12-1, 2.55 ERA, 126 K's   1.006 WHIP

Madison Bumgarner of the Fairgrove Tigers will face off against Portland's Anibal Sanchez, both pitchers lead their leagues in wins, while Bumgarner's 2.09 ERA ranks 2nd in the American League; Sanchez's ERA has risen from 2.01 to 2.55 in the last month. Bumgarner also leads league with 135 strikeouts, while Sanchez's 126 ranks 6th in the N.L.

Top of the 1st
Leading off is Jacoby Ellsbury, the lone Chicago Nine to make it to Seattle, leads the league with a mind-boggling 61 stolen bases, the most-ever at the All-Star Break -- Traverse City's Jean Segura leads the N.L. with 36 steals. Sanchez ends up walking Ellsbury, bringing up Robinson Cano -- we'll see if Ellsbury plans to test Buster Posey's arm behind the plate. Sanchez sets up, the pitch, Ellsbury is off & running, Posey spins & fires... SAFE! Ellsbury made it before the tag. Runner on 2nd for Cano, he hits it to left, it drops in, Carlos Gonzalez is up with it on the one bounce, Ellsbury rounds third, "CarGo" fires it to home, no chance, Ellsbury just outran that ball. Cano thought about second, but will stay at first. The American League strikes first & they have big, bad Miguel Cabrera (batting third) coming up to the plate. Sanchez ends up walking him as well, he has not looked efficient out there, runners on 1st & 2nd -- with Paul Goldschmidt coming to the plate, you have to wonder if Sanchez will make it out of the inning. Goldschmidt hits it to center, Mike Trout is under this one, Cano momentarily tags up, but plays it safe, returning to second -- not wanting to test Trout's arm. Shin-Soo Choo flies to right, once again Cano stays at second, he didn't want to test Michael Cuddyer's arm as well. The 6th hitter is up in Adam Jones, who just ran away with the votes for American League outfielders -- his stolen bases are down from last season; Sanchez delivers, this one is hit! All Gonzalez can do in left, is look up -- GONE! Three-run homer by Jones, representing the Fairgrove Tigers -- helping his Tiger teammate Bumgarner, here in the 1st. The National League sticks with Sanchez for now. Sanchez needs one out to get out of this nightmare, he faces Carlos Santana. Santana is walked, Sanchez's third walk! That is it for Sanchez, as the National League Manager Brad Stark comes out of the bullpen, they will call on the Traverse City PanthersJulio Teheran to get them out of this mess. Teheran is second in the N.L. in ERA (2.39), while also ranking 2nd in K/per 9 innings (11.0). Teheran facing Victor Martinez (who missed all of last season, due to an injury); The pitch, and it's bounced to Tulowitzki at short, flips to Kipnis at second, the force -- making it the 3rd out. American League 4, National League 0

Jones delivers a huge blast during the top of the 1st for the A.L.

Bottom of the 1st
Carlos Gonzalez leads off the inning, he was acquired during the off-season straight-up for David Ortiz, who went to Chicago. Madison Bumgarner delivers, this one is hit, going towards the right field corner, it's inside the pole, GONE! Solo HR for Gonzalez off of "Mad Bum" -- waking the National League crowd up. Mike Trout steps to the plate, he has bigger numbers going this year, although his steals are down; Robinson Cano makes a diving stop at second, throw to first -- out. One away, as the reigning N.L. MVP Adrian Beltre comes to the plate, what a difference a season makes, he's the lone Urbana Locomotive in this game, after they sent a bundle of players to last year's game. Beltre hits a double into the right field corner, as Edwin Encarnacion comes up to the plate, he is currently the BoS All-Time HR leader, with 70 HR's in only a season & a half -- he hit 50 last season, leading the entire BoS; Encarnacion trails San Diego Heroes teammate Chris Davis by 9 HR's at the break (Davis has 29 HR's). Bumgarner reaches back, fires, strikes out Edwin for out number two. Troy Tulowitzki flies out for final out. American 4, National 1

Top of the 2nd
Julio Teheran remains in the game for second inning. Mike Trout had to run for deep flies by lead-off hitter Ian Desmond & the third hitter of the inning in Robinson Cano -- but they would just be loud outs, while Teheran struck out Jacoby Ellsbury for the middle of a 1-2-3 inning.

Bottom of the 2nd
Michael Cuddyer leads off the inning with a double off of Bumgarner -- the ball skipped past Adam Jones who came in too quickly, Jones ran after it, as Shin-Soo Choo came over quickly to back him up. Runner on 2nd, no outs for Freddie Freeman -- who can forget Freeman's amazing post-season last year with 8 HR's?! Freeman does nothing here though, by popping out behind first. Buster Posey grounds to short, moving the runner to third with two outs. Madison Bumgarner badly fools Jason Kipnis, Cuddyer is stranded.

Top of the 3rd
The N.L. calls on rookie phenom Jose Fernandez to take the mound, the Holland Hitchhiker leads the league in ERA (2.15), with 10.1 K/per 9 innings; Fernandez was the 2nd player taken overall in the 2014 BoS Annual Draft. Fernandez would strike out both Paul Goldschmidt & Adam Jones in the inning, to keep the National League in the game -- American League still leads 4-1.

Bottom of the 3rd
The American League leans on Madison Bumgarner once more, Bumgarner would go on to strike out Carlos Gonzalez and Adrian Beltre -- making it 4 K's for the night, allowing only one run on two hits in 3 innings.

"CarGo" smacks a solo in the bot of 1st.

Top of the 4th
Jose Fernandez stays in to pitch the 4th, he strikes out Carlos Santana to start the inning, walks Victor Martinez. He will now have to face Ian Desmond, he's hoping for a double-play here & sure enough, he got just that!

Bottom of the 4th
John Lackey, who missed the entire 2013 BoS Season due to injuries, will take over for Bumgarner. His first assignment is against Edwin Encarnacion; Encarnacion strikes out again. Troy Tulowitzki of the Hannibal Cavemen steps to the plate, and flies to Adam Jones in center. Lackey strikes out Michael Cuddyer for the third out.

Top of the 5th
Clayton Kershaw, the Dodgers' reincarnation of Sandy Koufax (or closest thing to him) will take over for Jose Fernandez; Fernandez went two innings with 3 K's. The King Road Kings' Kershaw leads the N.L. with 9 complete games (3 more than the next guy), also leading the league in Innings Pitched (142.1 innings). The American League will send up Daniel Nava to bat for Jacoby Ellsbury, Nava is a switch-hitter having a great year for the Bronx Bombers (Ellsbury bats left). The pitch to Nava, this one is hit, with serious distance to left-center, HOME RUN! Kershaw shakes his head in disgust, good call by American League Manager Bill Gillam. Kershaw gets Robinson Cano to pop up, but allows yet another HR to Miguel Cabrera! The American League are doing it again to the poor National League, as we currently have a similar score to last year's game, A.L. leads 6-1. Kershaw allowed no runs in last year's game in one inning of work -- the N.L. have no choice but to leave him in for the rest of this inning (or at least will try for that). Paul Goldschmidt flies out for out number two. Kershaw walks Shin-Soo Choo, Choo's second walk of the game. The National League goes to the pen & yanks Kershaw after 2/3 of an inning -- the man will be Portland's Hisashi Iwakuma. Iwakuma walks Adam Jones, Jones is 1-for-2 now, with a HR, 3 RBI, K & walk. The American League calls on Joey Votto to pinch-hit for the switch-hitting catcher Santana -- Votto will face the right Iwakuma; Men on 1st & 2nd, 2 outs, Iwakuma comes to the plate, Votto smacks this one, and it's caught by Jason Kipnis at second -- a hard liner! The inning is finally over for the National League. American League 6, National League 1

Nava gets in on the HR fun -- Miggy would follow with one, two batters later.

Bottom of the 5th
The American League have made many changes on defense, Daniel Nava stays in at left, Yadier Molina takes over at catcher, Joey Votto who pinch-hit for Santana is out. Shane Victorino will come in for Shin-Soo Choo in right, Alexei Ramirez and Jed Lowrie take over the middle infield for Ian Desmond & Robinson Cano, while Allen Craig takes over at first for Paul Goldschmidt. The only two players that are still in the game from the starting lineup is Miguel Cabrera at third & Adam Jones in center, who both have HR's with Nava. There is also a change on the mound, the American League send in their 3rd pitcher C.J. Wilson. John Lackey is out after scoreless 4th inning, in which he had 2 K's for the night. The National League didn't like the Wilson/Freddie Freeman (lefty vs lefty) match-up & will go to the bench in favor of the Cuban phenom - Yasiel Puig, as Seattle's crowd stops sitting on their hands, making a little commotion in the stands. Puig bats right, Molina momentarily walks half-way up to the mound, with glove over mouth -- discussing how they are going to face Puig. Wilson sets & delivers, Puig hits routine grounder to Alexei at short, fires to first, one down. Buster Posey hits a blooper that falls behind Lowries' out-stretched glove at second (shallow outfield), runner on first -- The National League is trying to get something going here. Wilson will not face Jason Kipnis, as the N.L. will have Jordy Mercer (who bats right) face Wilson instead; They will also send in Coco Crisp to run for Posey at first. Mercer hits a swinging bunt towards third, Miggy is up with it, fires to first, he beats the throw! Runners on 1st & 2nd, one out with Carlos Gonzalez coming up to the plate; Gonzalez hit a HR earlier in the bottom of the 1st, for the National League's only run of the game. The N.L. decides to let the lefty Gonzalez face off against lefty Wilson -- ending up hitting straight to Lowrie to start an inning-ending double-play.

Top of the 6th
Hisashi Iwakuma stays in for the N.L., but make several changes to defense, Yasiel Puig who pinch-hit for Freeman, will take over in right field for Michael Cuddyer (Cuddyer finished 1-for-2, with a double) -- while Chris Davis takes over at first base, Jordy Mercer takes over at second, and Devin Mesoraco will be the catcher. Matt Holliday starts the inning off for the American League, as he takes over at DH for Victor Martinez (0-for-1, BB); Holliday strikes out. The rest of the inning goes out in 1-2-3 fashion for Iwakuma & the National League.

Bottom of the 6th
James Shields takes over for C.J. Wilson, after a scoreless inning of work. Adrian Beltre hits a single that sneaks pass Alexei Ramirez at short, Beltre's second hit of the game. The left-handed hitter Matt Carpenter will come in to pinch-hit for Edwin Encarnacion, taking over the DH spot. Carpenter ends up flying to center, two down. Troy Tulowitzki hits a double, Beltre rounds third but holds. Evan Longoria will come in to pinch-run for Beltre, he's not much faster. The American League is not taking any chances, and goes to the pen for reliever David D. Carpenter of the Brooklyn Mets; Carpenter has 10 Saves this season for the Mets, with a 1.17 ERA (5th best among A.L. relievers). Carpenter will face off against Chris "Crush" Davis; Carpenter winds up, and smokes it passed Davis for the big K! Score remains, American League 6, National League 1

Bumgarner pitched three strong innings for American League.

Top of the 7th
Kenley Jansen takes over on the mound for the National League, Jansen ranks second in the N.L. with 19 Saves -- he will have to face Jed Lowrie to start the inning. Lowrie ends up popping it out. The A.L. calls on David Wright to take over for Miguel Cabrera, as Wright grabs some lumber; Wright grounds out for out number two. Allen Craig strikes out to finish the 1-2-3 inning for Jansen.

Bottom of the 7th
David Carpenter will stay in for the American League, while David Wright (as expected) takes over for Cabrera at third, Shane Victorino moves over to center, Jay Bruce comes in to play right, as Adam Jones' night is finished. Yasiel Puig leads off with double against Carpenter. Devin Mesoraco flies to center, Puig tags up & Victorino guns him down at third, a double play! A big momentum killer, as the American League inches closer to victory. Josh Donaldson comes in to pinch-hit for Jordy Mercer; The A.L. counters with Mariano Rivera, coming in from the pen. Rivera strikes out Donaldson to end the inning.

Top of the 8th
Cliff Lee of that great Portland rotation takes over on the mound for Jansen. Daniel Murphy of the Kings, takes over at second -- Donaldson is out; Jhonny Peralta will take over at shortstop for Troy Tulowitzki. Jay Bruce hits one out double off of Lee. Yadier Molina grounds out for out number two, Bruce stays at second. Greg Holland comes in for Lee, after 2/3 of an inning -- and strikes out Matt Holliday for the third out.

Bottom of the 8th
South Shore's Hyun-Jin Ryu, the Japanese import is having a great rookie year for the Imps. Alfonso Soriano will come in to pinch-hit for Carlos Gonzalez, there are no more position players on the bench for the National League now -- I think at this point, they feel a comeback is looking highly unlikely. Ryu strikes out Soriano for out number one. That's it for Ryu, as the American League is trying to get everyone in there, they will have Koji Uehara face the National League's last remaining starter in Mike Trout. Uehara strikes out Trout & gets Evan Longoria to fly out.

Top of the 9th
Hannibal's Craig Breslow comes in for Holland to face Alexei Ramirez; Ramirez strikes out. Daniel Nava draws a walk. Brandon Phillips takes over for Lowrie; Phillips flies to center -- two down. David Wright pops it up.

Bottom of the 9th
Joe Nathan comes in to finish off the National League, as Brandon Phillips takes over at second. Matt Carpenter & Jhonny Peralta are quickly retired, it's all up to Chris Davis. Nathan strikes Davis out, as the American League wins again!


ALL-STAR GAME - Most Valuable Player
Adam Jones (FAIR) - 1-for-2, 3-run HR, BB, run

WP- Madison Bumgarner (FAIR)
LP- Anibal Sanchez (POR)

2014 National League All-Stars (BoS)

2014 National League All-Stars
* Commissioner addition picks


C - Buster Posey (Hannibal)
2nd time elected / 1st time starting

1B - Freddie Freeman (Portland)
1st time elected & starting

2B - Jason Kipnis (Portland)
1st time elected & starting

3B - Adrian Beltre (Urbana)
2nd time elected & starting

SS - Troy Tulowitzki (Hannibal)
1st time elected & starting

DH -Edwin Encarnacion (San Diego)
2nd time elected & starting
(Started last season as 1B)

LF - Michael Cuddyer (King Road)
1st time elected & starting 

CF - Mike Trout (Portland)
2nd time elected & starting

RF - Carlos Gonzalez (Portland)
1st time elected & starting

SP - Anibal Sanchez (Portland)
2nd time elected / 1st time starting

Posey returns to the All-Star Game, this time as a starter.


SP - Jon Lester (1st time)
RP - Craig Breslow (2nd time)

SP - Jose Fernandez (1st time)
RP - Greg Holland (1st time)

SP - Clayton Kershaw (2nd time)
2B - Daniel Murphy* (1st time)

SS - Jhonny Peralta (1st time)
OF - Alfonso Soriano (1st time)
OF - Coco Crisp (1st time)
SP - Cliff Lee (1st time)
SP - Hisashi Iwakuma* (1st time)

1B - Chris Davis (1st time)
RP - Kenley Jansen (1st time)

3B - Evan Longoria* (1st time)

C - Devin Mesoraco (1st time)
2B/3B - Jordy Mercer (1st time)
3B - Josh Donaldson (1st time)
DH/2B/3B- Matt Carpenter (1st time)
OF - Yasiel Puig (1st time)
SP - Julio Teheran (1st time)



The National League sends 24 1st-timers to the All-Star Game (the two leagues combined sent 45 new faces to the game). The Traverse City Panthers and Urbana Locomotives do role reversals, as the Panthers last season only had one All-Star (now have 6), while Urbana sent a bundle to the game last season, only has Adrian Beltre going to the "Midsummer Classic". Clayton Kershaw and Anibal Sanchez are the only pitchers returning to the game, while four players returning to the All-Star game will be in the starting lineup -- 3 of those 4 players will be starting for the second straight season.

2014 American League All-Stars (BoS)

2014 American League All-Stars
* Commissioner addition picks


C - Carlos Santana (Bronx)
2nd time elected / 1st time starting

1B - Paul Goldschmidt (Fairgrove)
2nd time elected / 1st time starting

2B - Robinson Cano (Bronx)
2nd time elected / 1st time starting

3B - Miguel Cabrera (Buffalo)
2nd time elected & starting

SS - Ian Desmond (Swatara)
2nd time elected / 1st time starting

DH -Victor Martinez (Swatara)
1st time elected & starting

LF - Jacoby Ellsbury (Chicago)
1st time elected & starting 

CF - Adam Jones (Fairgrove)
1st time elected & starting

RF - Shin-Soo Choo (South Shore)
1st time elected & starting

SP - Madison Bumgarner (Fairgrove)
2nd time elected / 1st time starting

Adam Jones led all OF's in votes & will play in his first game.


SS - Alexei Ramirez (1st time)
OF - Shane Victorino* (2nd time)

OF - Daniel Nava (1st time)
SP - James Shields (1st time)

SP - Clay Buchholz (1st time)
RP - David D. Carpenter (1st time)

OF - Jay Bruce (1st time)
RP - Koji Uehara (1st time)

2B - Jed Lowrie (1st time)
SP - C.J. Wilson (1st time)
RP - Joe Nathan (1st time)

1B - Joey Votto (1st time)
3B - David Wright (2nd time)
DH/OF - Matt Holliday (2nd time)
OF - Allen Craig (1st time)
SP - John Lackey (1st time)
SP - Hyun-Jin Ryu (1st time)
RP - Mariano Rivera* (1st time)

C - Yadier Molina (1st time)
2B - Brandon Phillips* (1st time)



The American League squad won the first All-Star Game last season, and have 21 1st-timers for the event. All 6 elected outfielders are newcomers, while the other outfielder Shane Victorino (elected for one of the 3 Commissioner-elect additions) returns for his second. Madison Bumgarner is the only pitcher (including relievers) to return for his 2nd All-Star Game, everyone else is newbies. Only one player returned to the starting lineup, and that was Buffalo's Miguel Cabrera.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Looking Back at 1st BoS All-Star Game

THIS IS AN OLD POST (Back in June 14') FOR MY BoS APBA BASEBALL LEAGUE -- Our 2nd Annual BoS All-Star Game is happening tonight.

Welcome to Washington, D.C., home of the Washington Filibusters.

NATIONAL LEAGUE All-Stars Starting Lineup
1. CF-Mike Trout (POR)
.257 AVG, 9 HR, 36 RBI, 27 SB   .784 OPS
2. LF-Yoenis Cespedes (SEA)
.261 AVG, 9 HR, 28 RBI, 8 SB   .823 OPS
3. 3B-Adrian Beltre (URB)
.352 AVG, 15 HR, 61 RBI   .969 OPS
4. RF-Giancarlo Stanton (T.C.)
.266 AVG, 21 HR, 46 RBI   .958 OPS
5. 1B-Edwin Encarnacion (SAC)
.196 AVG, 20 HR, 44 RBI   .716 OPS
6. C-Carlos Ruiz (URB)
.376 AVG, 12 HR, 35 RBI   1.087 OPS
7. DH-Josh Willingham (SEA)
.232 AVG, 16 HR, 46 RBI   .807 OPS
8. 2B-Neil Walker (HAN)
.269 AVG, 10 HR, 28 RBI   .794 OPS
9. SS-Erick Aybar (SAC)
.352 AVG, 4 HR, 29 RBI, 4 SB   .861 OPS

SP-David Price (URB)
12-3, 2.18 ERA, 123 K's   .876 WHIP

AMERICAN LEAGUE All-Stars Starting Lineup
1. LF-Melky Cabrera (S.S.)
.322 AVG, 11 HR, 43 RBI, 8 SB   .918 OPS
2. C-Joe Mauer (S.S.)
.331 AVG, 3 HR, 37 RBI   .871 OPS
3. DH-Matt Holliday (S.S.)
.251 AVG, 16 HR, 46 RBI   .787 OPS
4. 3B-Miguel Cabrera (BUF)
.287 AVG, 19 HR, 45 RBI, 5 SB   .909 OPS
5. RF-Carlos Beltran (WAS)
.268 AVG, 20 HR, 48 RBI, 7 SB   .887 OPS
6. 2B-Ben Zobrist (S.S.)
.260 AVG, 13 HR, 39 RBI, 6 SB   .888 OPS
7. 1B-Nick Swisher (CHI)
.274 AVG, 16 HR, 48 RBI   .898 OPS
8. SS-Hanley Ramirez (BRX)
.257 AVG, 16 HR, 51 RBI, 7 SB   .767 OPS
9. CF-B.J. Upton (CAR)
.278 AVG, 10 HR, 24 RBI, 17 SB   .871 OPS

SP-Kris Medlen (CHI)
7-4, 2.72 ERA, 119 K   .860 WHIP

David Price of the Urbana Locomotives will take the mound for the National League, against Kris Medlen of the Chicago Nine for the American League.

Top of the 1st
Mike Trout steps up to the plate, this kid is the future, and believe me the Portland Microbrewers knew this taking him as the top overall pick in the league's inaugural draft this past winter. The pitch to Trout, he hits a pebble bounce towards Ben Zobrist at second, Zobrist juggles it, throws quickly to first, not in time! Trout beats it out for a single. Batting 2nd, it's the Cuban star Yoenis Cespedes of the Seattle Rainiers steps up to the plate. Medlen delivers the pitch to Yoenis, another grounder to Zobrist, Zobrist flings it over to second to Hanley Ramirez for one, over to Swisher at first -- safe, but they get the lead runner, one out. Kris Medlen strikes out Adrian Beltre, swinging in the dirt for out number two. Giancarlo Stanton, the lone Traverse City Panther, swings throughout the at-bat, and gives Medlen his 2nd K of the day, side retired.

Bottom of the 1st
Melky Cabrera of the South Shore Fighting Imps comes to the plate to face David Price, as we all know that Price won the starting pitching job with 100% of the first-place vote, as if there was any doubt -- what a season he's having. Cabrera grounds it towards short, Erick Aybar is going to have to run in on this one, picks it up and throws in one motion towards first, and they nip the runner. Price is now to face Joe Mauer of the Imps, one of 6 Imps to be named to the All-Star Game. Mauer could be considered a early favorite for the American League MVP -- which in all honesty could go to a few of those Imp players, who sport the American League's best record at the break with a 53-28 record . Price delivers, Mauer hits a blooper to right that will fall right in front of the right fielder Giancarlo StantonMatt Holliday works the count & draws a walk on a high fastball by Price, runners now on 1st & 2nd, one out. Bringing up one of the most feared hitters on the planet in Miguel Cabrera. Cabrera hits a easy bouncer to Neil Walker, flips to Aybar at second over to first -- oh, double play and they get of the inning.

Top of the 2nd
Edwin Encarnacion of the Sacramento 66'ers steps up to the plate, he's batting 5th and has developed into one of the bigger sluggers in the game, a bit of a late-bloomer. Medlen brings the heat, strikes out Encarnacion, that is 3 K's for Medlen already. Carlos "Chooch" Ruiz comes to the plate, has put together a great season for the Locomotives -- Ruiz has a 1.087 OPS & .376 Batting Average for the season, if he had the plate appearances, he would lead the National League in both categories. This Urbana team has some bang in the lineup, and their rotation led by Price has been unbelievable. Chooch puts a lazy fly out to center which will be no problem for B.J. Upton of the Carolina Eagles to put it away, two outs. Medlen to face the Designated Hitter Josh Willingham, Willingham keeps battling pitches, by following it off -- then pops it up behind the plate, Mauer throws his mask off, side retired. Still no score for either team.

Bottom of the 2nd
Carlos Beltran steps up to the plate for the Washington Filibusters, Beltran ranks in the leaders for most of the offensive categories in the American League. The Filibusters tied the Imps by sending 6 players to the mid-summer classic, despite their 39-42 record. Beltran grounds it weakly to first to Encarnacion, as Encarnacion takes it himself, and steps on first for the first out. Next up is the versatile Ben Zobrist, he has played DH, the OF, but mostly 2B, and is capable of playing shortstop as well -- I guarantee that if you asked Manager Bill Gillam if Zobrist is as important to the team as say Mauer or Fernando Rodney, he would say yes. Zobrist pokes this one to left-center, Cespedes and Trout converge, Trout calls him off and takes it for out number two. Nick Swisher steps up to the plate, momentarily was on the South Shore roster until being involved in that Joey Votto deal. Price comes with the heat, and Swisher smacks this one past Beltre at third, but Aybar is there to back him up, spins & fires, the long throw and they get him -- what a play by Aybar as the Washington crowd cheers. End of the inning.

Top of the 3rd
The A.L. Manager brings in Justin Verlander of the Carolina Eagles, to pitch in the top of the 3rd, he currently leads the American League with a 2.39 ERA & pitched the league's first-ever no-hitter earlier this season against the Bronx Bombers. He'll face Neil Walker of the Hannibal Cavemen. Walker swings at a pitch he would like back, as he pops it to shortstop Hanley Ramirez of the Bombers.Verlander to face Erick Aybar of the 66'ers, Aybar holds the distinction of having the single-game record with 6 hits. The pitch to Aybar, a healthy cut by Aybar, but it's behind the plate, Mauer takes this one -- two away. Stepping up is Mike Trout, how many people would pay to see this match-up? Verlander vs. Trout. Verlander brings the heat, Trout rips it to right, past Beltran into the corner, Trout will hustle for two and he's in safe, easily -- the double by Trout is his second hit of the ballgame. Trout is now in scoring position, as Verlander will have to deal with Yoenis Cespedes of the Rainiers, one of the few bright spots for Seattle, who remain to be a bit of a mystery. Verlander comes to the plate, and Cespedes yanks it towards third, Miguel Cabrera up with the throw, throws it to first, and gets Cespedes by a stride -- still scoreless, as the American League will come to the plate.

Bottom of the 3rd
Clayton Kershaw will come in to relieve David Price, Price exits with one hit allowed in two innings, no K's for the big arm from Vanderbilt. Kershaw will face the Bronx Bombers' Hanley Ramirez who steps up to the plate for the first time tonight. Kershaw with the pitch, a towering fly ball to center, Trout sees it, has plenty of room, one down. Kershaw to face B.J. Upton, the pitch, Upton smacks a Texas Leaguer to left, rounds first & holds. Kershaw delivers high fast ball, Upton is off and running, Ruiz up guns the throw to second, and he's out! The American League trying to make things happen, great throw by Urbana's Carlos Ruiz. Two outs, Melky Cabrera still at the plate, the pitch, this one is hit, Cespedes in left got a great jump, and chases it down for the catch -- three away.

Top of the 4th
The A.L. brings out one of the crowd favorites, in Filibusters' star Zack Greinke [stats], Verlander faced four and allowed a double to Trout in the 3rd. Greinke will face Adrian Beltre, one of the early N.L. favorites for the Urbana Locomotives. Greinke comes home with it, Beltre with the big swing, and it's a whiff! One down. That brings up Giancarlo Stanton, who currently plays for the league's worst team, when we asked Panthers' Manager Shawn Baier earlier in the week, he told us "If you told me before the season, that at this point in the season that we would be dead-last in the entire league, I would have thought you were crazy." He did mention that they plan to stay put with their roster on the most part, the front office feels they are in good position for seasons to come, lots of young talent, and that up-and-coming rotation led by Yu Darvish and Matt Harvey is not going to be a picnic for any lineup to face when it all comes together. Meanwhile, Greinke delivers the pitch to Stanton, Stanton turns the bat loose, but comes up empty, two away. This now brings up slugger Edwin Encarnacion, who plays for a team with power, but in dire need for pitching -- Greinke comes home with it, Encarnacion grounds it to Zobrist, Zobrist to first for the easy out. Still scoreless as we go down to the home-half of the inning.

Bottom of the 4th
Kershaw is yanked for Urbana starter Cole Hamels. Hamels, actually had to rely on the fan's vote for the final two spots for the N.L. roster to make this All-Star Game, so here he is, one of the best lefties in the game today. Hamels will face Joe Mauer, who had a single his first time up -- Hamels with the pitch, checked swing, ball four and Mauer trots down to first. Hamels to face the DH-Matt Holliday, the pitch, it's lined over third, the left fielder Cespedes is chasing it, still running, he's up with it, Mauer rounds third, but the coach is putting up the stop sign, as the throw comes into Aybar at short, Holliday is in with a double. Which brings Miguel Cabrera up to the plate, Hamels delivers, Cabrera starts to go around, did he hold up? Yes, a bases on balls for Cabrera, as the bases are now loaded for Carlos Beltran.

The manager decides to keep in Hamels for a bit, as there is activity in the pen. Hamels delivers the pitch to Beltran, Beltran goes and gets this one, and this one is hit, Cespedes is running towards the left field wall, as he watches it disappear into the stands, a Grand Slam for Beltran in front of his home fans of Washington, are you kidding me?!

The visiting manager comes out and points towards the pen, as he calls on Hamels' Urbana teammate Hiroki Kuroda. Kuroda to face Ben Zobrist, the pitch, and he strikes out, one away. Kuroda to face Nick Swisher, the pitch comes in, he chops it down to Encarnacion on first, takes the high hop and throws it to Kuroda covering first, two down. Kuroda has one more batter to face to end this big inning by the American League All-Stars, that batter will be Hanley Ramirez. The pitch to Ramirez, a routine grounder to second, the throw to first, side retired, but not before the A.L. draws first blood,
American League 4, National League 0

Carlos Beltran gets the home crowd on it's feet with his Grand Slam.

Top of the 5th
The Filibusters' Kyle Lohse will come in to relieve his Washington teammate for the top of the inning, Greinke records two K's in one inning of work. Lohse delivers the pitch to Carlos Ruiz, Ruiz got some serious wood on this one, it's got plenty of hang time, Ruiz got under it just by a hair, and there to make the catch in right is Beltran -- one away. Josh Willingham draws a walk. The N.L. Manager decides to bring in a pinch-runner for the slow Willingham, and will rely on the wheels of Jon Jay (Hannibal), so Jay is the DH for now. Lohse looks over at first, sets up to pitch against Neil Walker, the pitch, this one is hit to right, Jay is around second & going for third, Carlos Beltran up with the throw and nails Jay at third by inches! What a throw! Beltran is making quite an early bid for the All-Star Game MVP here, Miguel just gets that tag on Jay's right arm. Two outs, runner on first, for Erick Aybar. Lohse with the pitch, Aybar lays down a swinging bunt to third, Miguel Cabrera is up with throws it to first, and they get him. Side retired, and a possible spark by the National League is stomped out by Beltran.

Bottom of the 5th
Portland's Anibal Sanchez will come in for the N.L., he will face B.J. Upton, who is 1-for-1 with a single. The pitch to Upton, he loops it to the gap in left, Upton rounds first, but will stay, second safety for Upton.
David Murphy of the Bronx Bombers will pinch-hit for Melky Cabrera, who was hitless in two at-bats, he bats left, and faces the righty Sanchez. The pitch comes in to Murphy, it's a long drive to right, he buried this one as Stanton in right just stands there -- two-run blast for Murphy!

Sanchez walks Joe Mauer, which will be it for Sanchez, just like Hamels he couldn't record an out. The National League will lose the platoon advantage, with southpaw Gio Gonzalez, they may have to go with him for two innings possibly. Matt Holliday steps up to the plate with a double, walk & run in this one. Gonzalez brings the heat, Holliday lunges at it, and that's strike three, one away. Miguel Cabrera comes to the plate, hitless in one at-bat with a walk. Gonzalez sets, delivers, and Cabrera goes down swinging. The fans get up on their feet as Carlos Beltran approaches the plate, runner on first, two outs; Beltran had a Grand Slam during the bottom of the fourth, to break this one open. Gonzalez with the pitch, Beltran whacks it, Stanton in right has a long way to go, still after it, near the line, and it's caught to end the inning. American League 6, National League 0

The Bombers' David Murphy.

Top of the 6th
David Murphy stays in the game to play left for Melky CabreraMiguel Cabrera is out at third for David WrightIan Desmond will take over at short for Hanley RamirezRobinson Cano in at second for Ben ZobristAlbert Pujols takes over at first for Nick Swisher, while Shane Victorino of the Boston Bravos takes over in center for B.J. Upton (who had two singles). They will go with a new pitcher, Madison Bumgarner of the Fairgrove Tigers will take over. They are obviously taking advantage of the score, Carlos Beltran and Joe Mauer are the only two starters that remain in the game. Bumgarner will face the Microbrewers' Mike Trout who is a perfect 2-for-2 so far. Bumgarner to the plate, this one is hit hard towards the gap in right center, Victorino is racing back, he won't get it, as it bangs off the wall, Victorino chases it down, as Trout cruises into second for his 2nd double & 3rd hit of the game. The N.L. skipper is going to yank Yoenis Cespedes out of the game, sending in Andrew McCutchen to the plate.
Bumgarner delivers, McCutchen drills this one to left, but it's right at the left fielder David Murphy who barely had to move, Trout thinks about tagging, but holds second, one out. Bumgarner will now have to face the dangerous Adrian Beltre; Bumgarner with the pitch to Beltre, it's off the end of his bat, easy pop fly for Robinson Cano at second, two down. The N.L. skipper goes to the bench for Josh Hamilton, he'll take over for Giancarlo Stanton in right. Hamilton ends up hitting a skyscraper to left, Murphy camps under it, three away. Score remains: American League 6, National League 0

Bottom of the 6th
McCutchen & Hamilton remain in the game at the corner outfield spots. Buster Posey of the Cavemen replaces Carlos Ruiz behind the plate. Edwin Encarnacion moves over to 3B to replace Adrian Beltre, while Garrett Jones comes in to play first. The King Road Kings' Darwin Barney comes in to play at second base. Leaving Mike MoustakasJimmy Rollins & Carlos Quentin on the bench for now. Gio Gonzalez stays in for now to pitch to Robinson Cano. Cano hits a high fly to center, routine for Trout, one down. The skipper comes to the mound, and will have the righty Bartolo Colon (Portland) to face Albert Pujols (Carolina), in his first at-bat of the game. Colon comes with it, it's grounded to the right side, Jones is up with it, flips it to Colon covering, two away. Ian Desmond steps up to the plate. Desmond ends up grounding it weakly to Jones at first, as Jones takes it himself, stepping on the bag, side retired.

Mike Trout makes a statement to the league.

Top of the 7th
The Buffalo Yankees' Jordan Zimmermann will come in for Bumgarner. Zimmermann to face Edwin Encarnacion, Encarnacion ends up sending a deep fly to right center as Beltran chase it down for the catch. Zimmermann strikes out Buster Posey. The southpaw Sean Burnett to face the lefty Jon Jay, playing DH. Burnett sets up, delivers, and strikes him out -- three away.

Bottom of the 7th
Reliever Jonathan Broxton of Seattle, will come in for Colon to face Boston's Shane Victorino. Victorino grounds it to second, Darwin Barney scoops it, throws it to first, BAD THROW -- but Jones manages to stretch and keep his foot on the bag, one out. David Murphy steps up to the plate, he hit a two-run pinch-hit home run during the bottom of the 5th. Broxton to the plate, and loses hime, Murphy draws a free pass and is now on first. Joe Mauer steps to the plate, Murphy is off-and-running, Mauer sends this one into the corner in right, Josh Hamilton is after it, Murphy is around third & he'll score, as Mauer rolls into second with a double, he's 2-for-2 with 2 walks, a RBI & run. The locals skipper will call on Paul Goldschmidt to bat for Matt Holliday, he'll likely play DH the remainder of the game, as Pujols will finish playing at first. Broxton comes with the heater, and strikes out Goldschmidt, two outs. David Wright, the 3rd overall pick in the inaugural BoS Draft, steps to the plate for the very first time -- the N.L. will make a change on the mound with Casey Jannsen coming in. Janssen comes to the plate, Wright flies to center to finish the inning. American League 7, National League 0

Top of the 8th
Carlos Santana of the Bronx Bombers, will catch for his Bronx teammate reliever Jim Johnson, who takes over for Burnett. The American League looked as if they were going to give Carlos Beltran another chance to add to his big night, but wants to get everyone in if they can, so his replacement will be Jason Heyward of Fairgrove. Darwin Barney leads off by hitting a liner over Ian Desmond's head, a single for Barney. The National League will give Mike Moustakas a chance to play, he's the lone Holland Hitchhiker on the All-Star roster, he's pinch-hitting for shortstop Erick Aybar. Moustakas grounds it to second baseman Robinson Cano, who gets the lead runner at second, but that's all they'll get as Moustakas is safe at first. One out, Johnson to face Mike Trout who's collected 3 of the National League's 5 hits; Johnson delivers, hit sharply towards third past a diving David Wright, Moustakas is around second, Murphy in left is still after it, picks it up, Moustakas is around third, but they'll hold him, as Trout makes it to second on his 3rd double & 4th hit of the game! What a show by the youngster, the face of the league, and to kick off the first All-Star Game with 4 hits. The American League will go to the pen for the Bravos' Craig Kimbrel, they don't want this one to become a ballgame suddenly. Kimbrel sets up to face Andrew McCutchen, the pitch, it's a dying quail to right, it drops ahead of Heyward, Jason Heyward is up with it, Moustakas scores, Mike Trout must have missed the sign, he's coming in strong, he's fast, he might just beat it, NO! He's out by inches! McCutchen into second safely. What a throw by Heyward! The shutout is gone, but now there is two outs for National League who are trying to fight their way back into this one. Garrett Jones grounds it to the mound, as Kimbrel throws it to first for the final out. American League 7, National League 1

Bottom of the 8th
Mike Moustakas stays in and plays third, Jimmy Rollins comes in at short, while Encarnacion is done for the day. The southpaw Jonathan Niese of Portland, comes in to face the lefty Jason Heyward, he's second in the entire Boys of Summer league in ERA with a 2.22 ERA (behind Price). The pitch from Niese, it's high -- Heyward draws a walk. Niese pitches to Robinson Cano, Cano hits it on the ground to short, Rollins is up with it, the relay to Darwin Barney at second, the throw to first, and they nip Cano as they turn the double play. Niese goes 2/3 of an inning as they call on Jonathan Papelbon, the leading vote-getter for N.L. relievers. Papelbon to face Albert Pujols, the pitch, Pujols smacks this one into the gap in right, Pujols is digging, Trout is now up with it, the throw to second, the tag & he's safe! Papelbon gets Ian Desmond to hit a routine fly to left, to retire the side.
Fernando Rodney: 28 Saves at the Break!

Top of the 9th
The American League go to the pen for Fernando Rodney, who's putting together an impressive, historic season -- he is blowing away the competition with 28 Saves at the All-Star Break, the remarkable part is that he has a 0.67 ERA. They will also have Jonny Gomes enters the game in left, in place for David Murphy, Gomes won't get any at-bats in this one, unless the National League make a crazy comeback. Rodney strikes out the lead off man in Josh HamiltonJimmy Rollins comes to the plate for his first at-bat of the night, Rodney delivers, Rollins smacks it to center, Victorino is there, two away. Down to their final out, the National League has Buster Posey at the plate -- Rodney comes home with it, paints the black, strike three called & that's the game!

The American League win big on Carlos Beltran's Grand Slam in the 4th.

American League 7
National League 1

M.V.P. - Carlos Beltran (Washington)

WP- Zack Greinke (WAS)
LP- Cole Hamels (URB)

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