Gameday 13: Ducks vs Eagles

2020 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, NABA, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (5-7)


South Side Eagles (2-10)


Springview Field

Probable starters:

Ducks: Patton?

Eagles: Horowitz

The Ducks look to rebound tonight, after back-to-back extra innings losses to Cranberry. The standings are still pretty tight, but South Oakland finds itself two games under .500 with eight games left, 2.5 games out of first. A division title is mathematically unlikely at this point.

The Eagles are 2-10, and that’s not a great record, but they shut us out earlier this year, and took us to extra innings the other time. At least tonight we are at the Duck Pond, our record is pretty good there.

We need to win some games and get on a roll before the playoffs. It would be great to get a home game in the first round if we miss out on a bye. We want to peak at the right time. Tonight is as good a time as any to start a winning streak.

Bad News for the Eagles


Ducks Lose. South Oakland 3, Cranberry 8 (9 inn.)

2020 South Oakland Ducks

Game 1: Ducks 8, Cranberry: 18 (8 inn.)

Game 2: Ducks 3, Cranberry 8 (9 inn.)

South Oakland (7-7) lost 8-5 in 9 innings to Cranberry last night in Spring Hill. Once again the Ducks fought back to send the game into extra innings, only to allow several runs and lose. Stumpf hit a grand slam in the top of the ninth for Cranberry, that sealed it.

It’s not easy to lose two games in extra innings by a combined 15 runs.

We only made a couple mistakes, but we paid for them.

We probably played ourselves out of a bye this week, but we’ve been in this position before. We just need to get hot down the stretch. This is the most complete team we’ve had in years, and I think we have a good shot at a title, even without the bye.

The Ducks next game is against the Eagles next Wednesday, 9pm at Springview Field.


Gameday 12: Ducks vs Cranberry

2020 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, NABA, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side


Cranberry Crusaders


Springview Field

Probable Starters:

Ducks: Blackstone

Cran: Valenti

The Ducks look to avoid a season sweep by Cranberry tonight at the Duck Pond. Cranberry has historically been a bad matchup for us, but I don’t think they’ve ever swept us. I could be wrong. Either way, tonight is a big game. We don’t want to be two games under .500 heading into the Eagles series against their new guy who shut us out last time we faced him.

I think we are finishing up last game before we start the next one, but I’m not sure.

We may lose an extra inning game by double digit runs. That’s no small feat. Maybe we will score eleven with two outs. Monday really devolved. Still, with a win tonight we can get out of this two game set even, and jump back in the mix for a bye.

Bad News for Cranberry



Suspended Game

2020 South Oakland Ducks, NABA, pittsburgh NABA, Recap, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

Last night’s game between South Oakland and Cranberry was suspended due to the lights going out in the 8th inning. The Ducks fought back to tie the game several times after falling behind early. Cranberry scored a bunch of runs in the top of the 8th, and got themselves out on purpose to try to move the game along.

I’m not sure if this is currently ruled a tie or if it reverts to the top of the 8th. This was frustrating. We had a couple chances to win the game in the 7th, and we got some bad bounces early.

The two teams play again Wednesday at 9pm at Springview Field.

Gameday 11: Ducks vs Cranberry

2020 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, NABA, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (5-5)


Cranberry Crusaders (5-5)


Springview Field

Probable Starters:

Cranberry: Germani (1-1, 12 K, ERA: 3.13)

Ducks: Welsh (1-1, 26 K, ERA: 2.95)

The Ducks open a two-game series against Cranberry tonight in Spring Hill. South Oakland needs a win to keep within striking distance of what is shaping up to be an exciting pennant race.

If you haven’t already, go vote for Player of the Decade at Cranberry’s blog. Andy does good work over there. He was an actual journalist once.

Everyone is really even this year. The Eagles have lost a couple tough games, too, or it could be even tighter.

It will be interesting to see how the first place Oilers fare when they get a bunch of games in a week. How they handle their games in hand will determine a lot. So far they’ve only lost to us and Cranberry.

Bandidos and Devils played a scorcher last night. At the halfway point of the season, Bandidos CF, Eric Friend is making a strong case for Double A MVP. He’s putting up Dustin Winston type numbers.

2020 has had an old school PGH NABA feel to it. Maybe I’m just overly nostalgic and more appreciative of this season after being stuck in my house all spring. There are all-time stats floating around, and  all-decade teams. Moore Park is back in the rotation, the Carrick’s ace took a couple teammates to the Devils, and the heart and soul of the Black Sox is playing in South Oakland. All the games feel more important. I think there’s a different vibe this season. I hope we all get through it safely.

We need to make a pushThis two game series against Cranberry is big, especially if it comes down to tie-breakers at the end of the year.

We always play well at the Duck Pond. Springview is in the best shape of her life.

Bad News for the Crusaders

All-Decade Team Preview

2020 South Oakland Ducks

I told Andy I’d help out with this since I’ve been playing for a long time and know a lot of guys who have played in the league since 2010. He’s put a lot of work into this.

Andy is raffling off a Tyler Boyd signed ball. If you go to Cranberry’s blog and vote, you’ll have a chance to win it.

We realized the Hurricanes folded in 2011. Should they be represented? I think so, but Andy disagrees. I concede the point as , but they were really good. Stupka had the best curve ball I’ve ever seen. Rafalski became a meme he was so dominant, and Joyner was arguably the best shortstop in the league for the three or four years he played. So while they won’t be on the ballot, they should be noted. I think there’s a write-in space. RIP Fightin’ Rafalskis.

There also was no team of the 00s, which would have been interesting. Personally, my favorite NABA years were 2008 and 2009. Our two winningest seasons in 2010 and 2011 were too stressful. The feel of 09 came back in 2014, but was again killed when we went to three divisions. It didn’t die a quick death, rather it was smothered to the point I handed over the reins. Now it’s fun again. This year, despite the masks, has been fun. Pardon the digression.

Andy reached out to all the former managers for their nominations, and I helped him fill in the blanks when they didn’t respond. When I couldn’t think of anyone, I picked my friends and eventual teammates. I’m sure I missed some guys.

Cranberry had a few more years in AAA this decade. I really only know guys from 2010-13. My choices are going to be biased. I can’t’ name one player from Jefferson Hills. They all looked the same when we played them, and hit rockets over my head in the OF.

Here is the list that will be on the ballot over at Cranberrys’ blog.

I can probably give more names of players on teams that no longer exist, or merged into new teams. Like Don Stetzer. All-time great for the Phantoms. I think they folded in like 2008 or maybe became another team. Then he went to the Warriors. Who is the best Cherokee player of all time? I don’t know, but I enjoyed playing with some of those guys as Ducks. I’ll vote for someone I know. Though, McNeil probably has the best stats of anyone whose played in the league when we’ve had the most talent in AAA overall.

We will take the top vote-getter from each team and then fill in with the lineup in ascending order of most to least votes.

I don’t know anyone in Single A, except Craig Boley who is easily the choice for the Warriors, despite his lack of nomination. He is the ultimate Warrior.

So check out Cranberry’s blog. I’ll post about this again.







Ducks Win: South Oakland 3, Oilers 1

2020 South Oakland Ducks

Ducks catcher, Tom Pulice hit a walk-off two-run home run in the bottom of the seventh to give South Oakland (5-5) the win last night in Spring Hill. Brandon Blackstone (W, 1-3) pitched a complete game for the Ducks.

Mike Brandt drove in a run in the third inning with an RBI single down the line in left to give South Oakland the lead. The Oilers (4-2) tied the game in the fourth. Liam singled to start the bottom of the seventh. After a correctly called intentional drop on a line out to short, and a strikeout, Pulice hit the game-winner. The 2018 MVP’s first home run as a Duck.

With the win, South Oakland evened their season series with the BIG OIL. These were two good games. The teams appear to be evenly matched.

At the halfway point of the season, South Oakland sits at 5-5. One game out of first,  tied for third with Cranberry who swept the Ducks this season, and a half-game behind the Bandidos who the Ducks swept. The Devils and Oilers are tied for first. It’s shaping up to be an exciting finish in AA.

The Ducks open a two-game series against Cranberry on Monday, 9pm at Springview Field.



Ducks Lose: BIG OIL: 2, South Oakland 0

2020 South Oakland Ducks

The Ducks lost a heartbreaker, 2-0 to the first place Oilers (4-1) Tuesday night in Brookline. South Oakland was shorthanded, but Billy Welsh (L, 0-1) pitched a gem. Ducks third baseman, Kenny Rayl was 2-for-3 at the plate, but was cheated out of an RBI when his fly ball to the left center gap found the doorway in the fence, and went for a ground rule double. The Ducks left many runners on base.

South Oakland drops to 4-5 on the season with the loss.

Pending further city or county-wide restrictions on outdoor gatherings, the two teams play again Wednesday, 9pm at Springview Field.

Gameday 9: Ducks at Oilers

2020 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, NABA, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (4-4)


Hebrew Oilers (3-1)


Moore Park

Probable Starters:

BIG OIL: Pearson

Ducks: Welsh

South Oakland travels to historic Moore Park to play the Hebrew Oilers tonight. This is our first game played under “yellow” conditions. If I did anything right as manager, it was quitting before this season. What a mess. The last game between these two teams played at Moore Park ended in a 6-6 tie. It was so long ago, I still had enough of an arm to throw out a runner. Those were the days. Outfield assists and no pandemic.

BIG OIL lost to Cranberry 13-3 on Sunday, but they only had eight guys. We’ve had a good rotating cast of villains in this league (including the Ducks) and our share of rivalries. The Oilers are right up there in both categories.

They have always beaten us when it matters, though, and as evenly matched as we’ve been over the years, they have a title and another finals appearance under their belt. Both years they beat us in the playoffs after we beat them in the regular season. This is kind of how it was with us and the Black Sox for years. We could never get passed them until we brought in Fago the first time. Since 2010, we’ve made most of our personnel additions from within the league. Usually when teams fold (Hurricanes, Owlz, Militia, Bulldogs and most recently the Black Sox) or their manager pisses off a bunch of players like the Bulldogs. Longevity has benefitted us in this regard. The Oilers don’t add many guys from within the league.

This is a big series for both teams.

We have a few former Black Sox who will feel at home in Brookline tonight. Hopefully that gives us the edge we need.

Bad News for the Oilers

Ducks Win: South Oakland 6, South Hills 1

2020 South Oakland Ducks, Ducks WIn, NABA, pittsburgh NABA, Recap, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

Box Score

The South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (4-4) took advantage of a six-run fourth inning and a solid start from Randy Patton (W, 2-0) to beat the Devils (4-3) last night in Spring Hill. Matt Schmidt pitched 2/3 inning for the save (1) in his first appearance as a Duck.

TJ Morgan had 2RBI for South Oakland to put the game out of reach.

The Devils and Ducks split their two game series. Each team won 6-1 at home.

Early season scoreboard anomalies in AA

We’ve won two extra inning games by three runs, beating the Eagles 7-4 (9 inn.) and the Bandidos 6-3 (8 inn.).

The Eagles have lost 2 extra inning games this season. Losing in 9 to the Ducks and the Oilers.

The Oilers (3-0) won their first two games on their last at bat. Walk-off wins against the Devils and the Eagles. They beat Cranberry by 6.

South Oakland opens a two game series with undefeated BIG OIL next Tuesday. Time and location tbd. We might play at historic Moore Park. That would be fun.