Gameday 19: Ducks vs. Eagles

2017 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (11-5-2)

vs

South Side Eagles (12-4-1)

9pm

Springview Field

 

Both teams are rested and ready to go after the holiday weekend. We lost a tough game to the Eagles, 5-4 early in the season, but both teams should be better tonight. I expect another close one. The Bandidos keep winning at the top of the standings, but I feel they are due for a tie in some kind of weather or electrical failure in their last few games.

We can move into second place with a win and keep our hopes for a division title alive. I’ve already written too much about the importance of this game in yesterday’s post. So here’s the Dude:

Bad News for the Eagles

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Gameday 17: Ducks vs Bauerstown

2017 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, NABA, pittsburgh NABA

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (10-5-1)

vs

Bauerstown Grizzlies (7-7-1)

9pm

Springview Field

A win for the Ducks tonight would pull the team back within a half game of the Eagles (12-4-1) and the Bandidos (13-6). The Grizzlies are trying to stop a three game losing streak and get back over .500.

League-wide, this season has been characterized by a bunch of ties and blackouts. It reminds me of my early twenties, most which I also spent playing for the Ducks. Seven of eleven teams in Double A have a tie, and the new guy at the city can’t keep the lights on. The stretch run this season is going to be interesting.

We’ve already had a tie, a rain-shortened game, a suspended game, and a game in which the lights went out in the bottom of the first inning.

South Oakland’s previous game against Bauerstown was called early due to a thunderstorm with the Ducks leading 8-7 heading into the bottom of the sixth. That game will be made up after the regularly scheduled seven inning game is played, if time permits, and the lights stay on.

The Ducks are coming off a big win against the Express, and should field a more complete lineup than the last meeting between the two teams.

Bad News for the Grizzlies

Gameday 17: Ducks at Express

2017 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (9-5-1)

at

Carrick Express (7-7)

8pm

Volunteer Field

South Oakland of the North Side looks to rebound after a tough loss to Cranberry tonight in Carrick.

We always play like the walking dead against that team at least once a year.

Here’s a quick look at the standings, followed by some expert analysis that someone will undoubtedly take offense to and get me beaned.

Someone once told me good writing contains fractals, the way the narrative breaks apart naturally into threads and those threads move in an arc towards the conclusion.

Will 2 Dirty 2 Birds: Return of the Bandidos have such an arc, continuing to win titles before being forced to move up and break apart and buy new unis every other year? Will the teams with games in hand make them count? Will this blog ever have good writing, aside from Donnie’s guest posts?

Quick info  on the Bandidos motorcycle gang linked below. Interesting for the other team that plays in Bakery Square to be named after these guys.

Big missed opportunity for Eagles Sunday, day game unis

The Eagles stormed out of the gate before hitting a rough 0-4-1 stretch and returned to the pack a little. They have won two straight, I think. They’re still in first and still probably the team to beat. They hit the shit out of the ball.

The Oilers dropped one to Cranberry as well last week, and have likely been struggling to find consistent pitching aside from that lefty. This is all a guess. Perhaps we jumped the gin on their ringers coming in and shutting it down, but I’m sure that have something up their collective sleeve for the stretch run.

Bauerstown is overall pretty solid. We are hopefully going to finish our suspended game before starting our second game against them on Wednesday. That will be a big night for us if we can hold on to the win in the game in which we are up 1 in the bottom of the sixth, and potentially sweep that night. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

West View scuffling along at .500 is probably the biggest surprise of the season. Maybe teams aren’t as intimidated by the atmosphere at John Herb anymore. Who knows. It will be interesting to see if they get a bunch of rain outs rescheduled in time, and how that will effect the standings.

The Cranberry, D2, Wexford, Devils grouping is still good enough to sneak a game here and there form a top team. Should be an exciting stretch run.

The Express are still the Darkhorse to make a deep run this season. With the emotions of this likely being their last year under current management and their future in doubt they have extra motivation. Plus the pitching depth.

But they still have a long way to climb up the standings. Tonight, we can pull within a game of the Eagles, and keep pace the Bakery Square. We always give Carrick a good game. Four of the last five have been decided by one run. We need to hit tonight.

Smoking man seems fitting for this game.

Bad News for the Express

 

Gameday 16: Ducks vs. Cranberry

2017 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, NABA, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (9-4-1)

vs.

Cranberry Crusaders (3-10)

9pm

Springview Field

The South Oakland Ducks of the North Side can move into a tie for first with a win tonight over the Newly Minted Cranberry Crusaders.

Cranberry, at one point a couple years ago, went by the Young Guns. I think I remember this and probably photoshopped some kind of intense Emilio Estevez/Charlie Sheen wild west thing.

Image result for young guns movie images

Like this but with germani photoshopped in there, throwing that 50mph curve ball no one can hit.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/1/1b/The_Young_Guns_poster.jpg/220px-The_Young_Guns_poster.jpg

Anyway, I’m not surprised that name didn’t stick. There is really only room for one team with a nickname that has connotations to an Emilio Estevez film. Which, come to think of it, D2 is going to have to re-brand. Like the Dirty Bandido Lion Birds or whatever.

Best Emilio Estevev film?

Men at Work.

https://alchetron.com/cdn/Men-at-Work-1990-film-images-308d5ed0-499b-4869-9faf-34703d6606b.jpg

Bad News for the Crusaders

Stall Tactics. Ducks 8, Bauerstown 7 (suspended, rain)

2017 South Oakland Ducks

South Oakland tied the game on a John Zuzak single in the top of the sixth, then took an 8-7 lead on a bases loaded walk by Patton before the game was suspended due to rain, Sunday in Bauerstown.

The Ducks lead 4-1 going into the bottom of the third, then a couple errors, hit batsmen and singles by Bauerstown lead to five Grizzlies runs, and a 6-4 lead.

The teams traded runs in the fourth.

After leaving the bases loaded in the fifth, South Oakland scored three runs in the top of the sixth, and completed the half inning before the rain started, despite a questionable pitching change with two outs and the bases loaded, storm clouds on the horizon.

Mike Brandt took an intentional strike out in an attempt to finish the inning.

I dont’ know if it was even necessary at that point. I know if there’s a lead change in the half inning, the game is suspended. I’m not sure if it mattered that we finished our half. Regardless, selfless at bat by Brandt to swing at three in the dirt in order to move things along.

I assume we will complete the game before we start the next one, but it might just go unfinished.

Great effort by several Ducks who don’t normally start.

We came out flat but rallied late. Good effort overall.

It’s been a weird season with a rain-shortened opening day loss, a tie, and a suspended game already.

Some stats:

Morgan, 1-1, HBP, BB, 3RBI

J. Zuzak: 1-2, 2BB, RBI

Chavarek: 2-3, BB

Dover: 4-4, 2B, RBI, 2R

Police: 1-1 2B, 3BB, 2R

Graff: 0-0, 2BB, 2R

South Oakland’s next game is this Wednesday 9PM at Springview Field, vs. Cranberry

quack

 

 

Ducks Win Two Straight, Set Up Rivalry Game Showdown with Oilers on Friday

2017 South Oakland Ducks, NABA, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

The South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (9-4) defeated Pittsburgh D2, 5-1 in Banksville on Tuesday, and notched a wild come-from-behind, 7-6 victory over the Carrick Express at Spring Hill last night.

The wins move South Oakland into sole possession of second place behind the 9-1 South Side Eagles.

Re-enactment of Mike Koshzow’s triple last night in Spring Hill

On Monday South Oakland got a gem from starter Chuck Zuzak, (W, 2-1) who threw five shutout innings. Reliever Mike Annerino took over in the sixth, and allowed one unearned run on a throwing error after what appeared to be a game-ending pickoff play in the seventh.

Zuzak worked out of a bases loaded, one-out jam in the first with a double play ball, and D2 didn’t really threaten after that. South Oakland scored two in the fourth, and added three insurance runs in the sixth.

Morgan, Dover, Pulice, Gwin and Moore had RBI for the Ducks. Casale had two hits, and is on fire since his return from the DL. Maldonado kept the Ducks’ spirits up with lots of chatter and clapping, which may have rattled the D2 starter, and somehow did not lead to a D2 throwing at him.

Wednesday’s game vs. Carrick was vintage Pittsburgh NABA. I left after trading a page of our score book for a cigarette from one of the Express players. The game itself featured questionable umpiring, ejections, multiple three-run home runs, and several lead changes.

Opportunity for alternate Express unis

Carrick jumped out to an early lead off Ducks starter Ben Sorosky, but after a four run first, Sorosky settled in, and went four innings without allowing another run. Some guy on Carrick hit a three run homer with two outs in the opening frame. Carrick was up 4-0 after one.

The Ducks battled back. Mike Koshzow hit an opposite field, three-run home run, and added an acrobatic triple later in the game.

Carrick took a 5-4 lead in the sixth.

In the bottom of the sixth, pinch hitter Chris Heisler delivered a game tying RBI double, and Andy Nichols drove in what proved to be the game winning run with a two out, two-run double later in the inning off John Smiley’s kid, who was traded to the Reds for prospects after the game.

Jon Moore entered the game and tomb stoned the Express for the four out save.

Doc pitched 1 and 2/3 in the fifth and sixth, and earned the win, I think.

By all accounts, the plate ump had a rough night. Two guys were tossed in the bottom of the seventh for arguing balls and strikes. Carrick’s manager was pissed.

Ducks outfielder Brian Strom improves his 2017 managerial record to 1-1 and somehow got fourteen different Ducks into the game.

After a rough start to their season, the Express look rejuvenated. They are going to be a tough out in the playoffs. We play them once more in Carrick.

The Brendan Chartier Memorial Spring Hill Scooter Series continues Friday at 8:30 PM when the Ducks face the Hebrew Oilers (6-4) at historic Moore Park in Brookline.

quack.

 

 

 

How is this team six and three?* Ducks 10, Bandidos 9

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

Mark Lombardi and DJ Dover hit back-to-back home runs in the fifth inning, and Ducks starter Ben Sorosky (W, 3-0) scattered seven hits over six innings to propel the South Oakland Ducks of the North Side to a come from behind, 10-9 win over the Bakery Square Bandidos (6-4) in Spring Hill last night.

With the victory, the Ducks (7-3) pulled within a half game of the Oilers (6-2) for second place.

The Bandidos took a 5-0 lead in the first, but the Ducks answered with four in the bottom of the second. Koshzow singled, John Zuzak doubled off the wall, then Gwin singled in two after the Bandidos right fielder fell down. With two out, Lombardi doubled and then Dover drove in two more with a line drive single to left.

Both teams scored a run in the third to make the score 6-5 ‘didos.

Koshzow singled in two in the fourth to give the Ducks a one-run lead. Then the Bandidos scored two in the fifth to go up 8-7, and Ducks outfielder Bryan Chvarak tore his quad.

In the bottom of the inning, Bryan Chvarek singled, hobbled to first, and was almost thrown out from center field. Two batters later, Lombardi hit a two-run home run to left, and Dover followed with a solo home run to give the Ducks a 10-8 lead.

Ducks reliever, Chris Heisler allowed one run in the seventh, but recorded the save after pulling his hamstring and striking out the last batter of the game.

South Oakland’s next game is Tuesday 6:45pm, at Mellon Park vs. Hebrew Oilers

Gutsy win. With a couple late no-shows, and a bunch of guys on vacation, we scored a lot of runs.

Great effort from Sorosky when he didn’t have his best stuff.

I think everyone in our lineup recorded a hit.

Not the best umpiring.

*The quote in the title was in reference to the Ducks, said by one of our players after one of the many errors we made last night. Both teams were 6-3 going into the game. The Bandidos are solid guys, and I don’t want them to think that was a disparaging remark directed at their franchise. Here’s hoping they can keep the same name, and group of core players for two consecutive seasons.

7-3 is our best start in years.

quack

 

 

Gameday 10: Ducks vs. Bandidos

2017 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, pittsburgh NABA, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (6-3)

vs

Bakery Square Bandidos (5-3)

9PM

Spring View Field

South Oakland looks to regain sole possession of third place with a win tonight vs Bakery Square. The Oilers (6-2) beat the Eagles (8-1) yesterday, setting up a potential log jam at the top of the division.

The Ducks are only two games out of first with two remaining against the Eagles, and two left against BIG OIL, but the rebooted Dirty Birds figure to be in the hunt down the stretch as well.

The Bandidos franchise won the A title in 2014 as the North AAmerican Lions. Then changed names, dropped some players, and won AA title two years ago as the Mon Valley Dirty Birds, then suffered through a dismal regular season in AAA that culminated in a playoff win over Ken Cool’s brother’s team in the playoffs. Then they split with half the team joining Clinton, and the other half starting the Bakery Square team. It would be funny if they won the title this year and had to keep repeating the process.

The Bandidos franchise arc is one that we may see play out again in the current league format that has the AA winners move up into AAA.

In 2014, the Ducks dropped from AA to A. That season the Rebels, Eagles and Devils moved up. They went a combined 19-52 that season, with the Rebels posting the best record at 9-15. South Oakland went 17-6, and that was the most fun I’ve had playing baseball.

The Devils allowed 196 runs that season. The Bulldogs, who finished first in the regular season, allowed 66.

in 2015, we went to three divisions, which allowed the WOLFPACK to skate by without having to play against the AAA teams after winning the A title over the North American Lions after the Beedle Park incident in Jefferson Hills allowed West View to reschedule the semi-final against the Ducks which lead to one of the most frustrating playoff losses in Ducks history. The following season most of AAA dropped down to AA, leaving 5 teams in the top division, and forcing inter-league play, which was pretty shitty.

In 2016 the Dirty Birds moved up and finished 6-18, which brings us back to this season, and the Rebels in AAA, who should stay there so we don’t have to play on that shit field at 6pm on a weekday.

So that’s some stuff that happened in our league over the last few years.

I hope it doesn’t rain tonight.

Bad News for the Dirty Birds