The great thing about the APBA Facebook Group, we always seem to inspire one another on our many APBA projects. I got inspired when I was reading about my friend Rich Zawadzki's Monster 254-team Tournament, so I decided to kick off the dust off a 64-game tournament that I had started back in 2016.
I have completed two 64-team tournaments in the past, the first one (2014) was won by the 1927 New York Yankees over the 1993 Philadelphia Phillies; The second tournament witnessed the 1979 Pittsburgh Pirates ("We Are Family") defeating the 1946 Boston Red Sox in a 13-Inning final, 2-0.
Resuming the late 1st Round, which had just a handful of games remaining, I decided to play the 2002 Oakland Athletics at 1995 Cleveland Indians.
The game went back-and-forth, Oakland kept their starter Barry Zito (Grade A-X) out there the entire game, but Cleveland wins the game with a walk-off home run by Jim Thome. The final score to the game was 5-4, yet featured 5 homers by both teams combined.
For Cleveland, it was the first time the 1995 Tribe got past the 1st Round, while this is the first time the 2002 Athletics could not get past the 1st Round, going as far as the Elite Eight back in 2015.
The last 5 games to play in the 1st Round are as follows:
- 1971 Oakland Athletics at 1917 Chicago White Sox
- 1993 Philadelphia Phillies at 1912 New York Giants
- 1940 Detroit Tigers at 1931 Philadelphia Athletics
- 2012 Detroit Tigers at 1937 New York Yankees
- 1969 Atlanta Braves at 1927 New York Yankees
My tournament features a 1-2 pitching rotation, with aces pitching in the Championship Final.