Ducks Win: South Oakland 4, Bauerstown 1

2019 South Oakland Ducks, Ducks WIn, pittsburgh NABA, Recap, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

Mark Lombardi drove in three runs and Matt Mullen (W, 2-0) scattered four hits over six innings to lead the Ducks past the Grizzlies last night in Munhall.

Mullen worked out of a jam in the first after a hit batter, a single, and a delayed steal put runners on second and third with two outs. Mullen got their five hitter to groundout and end the inning.

The game was scoreless until the bottom of the fourth. MVP candidate Tony Casale moved to third on Derek Clark’s single and scored on Lombardi’s sacrifice fly.

Mullen worked around a single and two hit batters in the fifth with the help of Tom Pulice who threw out a guy trying to steal second.

The Ducks left the bases loaded in the fifth.

Lombardi threw out a guy trying to stretch a single to a double in the top of the sixth, but Bauerstown clawed a run across with a single and a series of ground outs.

In the bottom of the sixth, the Ducks scored three to put the game out of reach. Casale singled to start the inning, and went first to third on Pulice’s well placed single up the middle two batters later. Maldonado, running for Pulice, took second with the infield playing up. Lombardi drove in two runs with a single to left, and took second on the throw home. Mullen drove in Lombardi for the Duck’s fourth run.

James Fago recorded his franchise record fifth save of the season.

  • Big win against a good team
  • Grizzlies employed the no doubles defense for most of the game, leading to a few 300 foot singles
  • Casale’s numbers this year are MVP worthy. He’s at least in the conversation. That guy from Cranberry and the Grizzlies guy are also good.
  • Ran out of baseballs right at the end of our last home game. Perfect timing.

South Oakland’s next game is Friday night against the Oilers, 7pm at Mellon Park

Gameday 17: Ducks vs Bandidos

2019 South Oakland Ducks

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (9-7)

vs

Bakery Square Bandidos (3-13)

8pm

West Field

After a forfeit win over West View on Sunday, the Ducks looks to extend their winning streak to four tonight against the better-than-their-record-indicates Bandidos.

In a celebration of South Oakland’s seventeenth season in the Pittsburgh NABA, and the rich history of our league, the Ducks will host throwback night tonight in Munhall. Players will wear their oldest NABA jerseys in what will be a collage of awesomeness out on the turf.

The 2019 Ducks feature players who have played for the Hurricanes, Black Sox, Owlz, Knights, Orioles, Rakers, Gray Bats, Militia, Bulldogs, Bombers, (Steel City when they were still a fed league team), Maulers, Oilers and the Express. Possibly more. Also, many of the Bandidos have played on the Ducks in recent tournaments in Columbus, and made solid contributions to the franchise on and off the field.

Nine of the teams mentioned earlier are defunct. Only the Bulldogs and Oilers remain. I think TJ Morgan might be the last Hurricane in the league. A franchise that burned so brightly for a few years it was destined to destroy itself with its own power.

Running a team is hard. Keeping a men’s league team going for the better part of two decades is probably a symptom of a mild psychological disorder. Last year the Black Sox folded and this year the Express dropped out, and I think that’s all the Brookline off-shoots in the league. The Black Sox spawned like five different teams.

I repeat a lot of these stories on the blog, but I think it’s important to have a perspective on the league’s history, and now with the old website dying, we’ve lost most of the stats from the last 16+ years. Baseball more than any other sport, for better and worse, is about numbers and nostalgia and tradition. Our stats don’t really matter in real life, but they are part of the story of the league and a record of a past summer. Stories of ringers and sandbaggers and fist fights and cheaters. For the Ducks, aside from maybe four seasons, it’s a story of being one piece away from a championship. As we added that missing piece, others left, or the rest of the league took a bigger step forward then we did. Hopefully we cam put it together and make a run in the playoffs this year before I hand over the managerial reigns.

Sorry for the digression.

We can’t overlook the Bandidos. They are clearly reeling, but it’s hard to sweep anyone in double A. Bakery Square is bound to snap out of it and start winning at some point. Let’s make sure it’s not tonight.

Bad News for the Bandidos

 

Gameday 14: Ducks vs D2

2019 South Oakland Ducks, Gameday, pittsburgh NABA

South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (6-7)

vs

Pittsburgh D2 (4-8)

8:30 pm

Herschel Park

South Oakland will try to get back to .500 tonight in Elliot. The Ducks have lost the last three games by a total of five runs. South Oakland lost 4-0 to D2 the last time the teams met.

We’ve been shutout three times this season, but our pitchers have also thrown two shutouts. The goal now is to finish in the top six, avoid the play in games, and get our offense in a better place for the playoffs. You don’t want to peak too early.

Some combination of Fagos will throw tonight. Maybe 55, will give us an inning.

Bad news for D2

Everyone Cheats – South Oakland Ducks 2018 Preview

2018 South Oakland Ducks

If you haven’t paid, you need to pay me. Everyone needs to register on the league site before Tuesday. Same deal as every season. For fuck’s sake, register and pay your league dues. Guys who haven’t paid will sit.

No metal spikes on the new field. Get turf shoes, molded cleats or sneakers.

The first week of the schedule is up. We open with back-to-back games.  4/17 at BIG OIL; 4/18 vs WOLFPACK!!!

Tuesday at Mellon Park, 6:45pm. Former Oiler Randy will start in the grudge match, provided we aren’t snowed out.

Wednesday, West Field, 9pm. Starter TBD.

Roster Notes:

We have added a couple guys who can hopefully pitch, and first baseman Eric Tuomisto is back in town.

We lost utility player and closer, John Moore, and there are a couple guys who are up in the air right now. We have essentially the same lineup as last season.

This season marks our fifteenth in existence. With the Black Sox folding, the Warriors are the only other original five franchise still in the league (they were the piranhas in their first season, and we beat them for the our first championship). I started the Ducks when I was 22 and could still run and my back wasn’t all fucked up. Someone please take over for me. I’m old.

The Black Sox were our greatest rival when both teams were winning games, and this league was arguably at its peak. Certainly the blog was at least readable back then. So much has changed. Baseball lends itself to nostalgia. It’s fucking weird to be nostalgic about the early years of an adult league, but probably healthier than being nostalgic about high school or college ball. I’m incredibly grateful and very fortunate to still be able to play baseball and enjoy it. I don’t take our team and the league for granted.

Having said that, I will probably tear my ACL on the turf during warmups before our first home game.

I think Craig Boley and I are the last two players who have been in the league all 15 years of its existence. Boley kept the league running in the sketchy early days, and we all owe him a debt of gratitude for his efforts. I’m trying to get Boley to come play for us this season. I’ll poach the shit out of your players, Newman! Contract talks with Boley are ongoing.

We have a new home field. West Field in Munhall, former home of the Homestead Grays. It was recently renovated, and is now all turf. Pittsburgh NABA’s North American Lions used to play there back in 2014.

Over the years, I’ve put hundreds of hours into getting Spring Hill playable and I’ll never have that time back. Now, with the turf field, we should have fewer rainouts, and I will never have to rake it. It should help our infield play, and reduce the risk of dangerous bad hops. The dugouts are actually big enough to fit our whole team.

We will play two home games at the Duck Pond this season. Spring Hill is never in good shape, but I loved playing there. I might feel differently if I was an infielder. I’ll miss driving up that hill past all the meth addicts out on their stoops. The flying scooters, and how pissed off some teams were that they had to play in Spring Hill.

Ducks, another reminder: Pay me. Register. See you Tuesday.

Let’s win it this year. If our new pitchers work out, we have a great shot at it.

Quack.

Gameday 6: Ducks vs. Eagles

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

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

vs

South Side Eagles (3-0)

9pm

Spring View Field

The Ducks look to win their fifth straight tonight when they play the undefeated South Side Eagles.

These games are always close. We beat them by 2 in the playoffs last year, like 13-11 or something. I assume tonight’s game will be lower scoring, but also close.

I still remember when the Eagles had a left shortstop who also pitched and had this huge looping curve ball that was pretty good. That was in like 2007. The Eagles franchise has been around for a while. Ducks pitcher Adam Smith defected one year to play for the Eagles in 2008, which intensified the rivalry between the clubs and between him and one time Ducks manager and pitcher, TC Jones.

I don’t know. Since the early days, the eagles haven’t really had much of an identity other than the team that can hit. Ducks and Eagles were in different divisions for a while after the A – AA split, and then again, I think, after the second reshuffling when the Ducks dropped down, the Eagles moved up which has made it hard to develop much of a rivalry.

That guy with the mouth piece sure fucking talks a lot though. However their coach makes sweet bats. Cancels out I guess.

We have a chance to put some distance between us and the middle of the pack and put some pressure on the Oilers and the WOLFPACK! and the Bandidos who are surprisingly 1-3, but I think are going to be good.

55 is on the hill tonight.

Bad news for the Eagles

 

 

Gameday 9: Ducks as Black Sox

2015 South Oakland Ducks Baseball

kennyP

Tonight we write another chapter in the history of a storied Pittsburgh NABA rivalry. There are a lot of guys on our team that haven’t played Brookline, or haven’t played them as Ducks. But I think they’ll learn quick. In 2007, I think, The Sox split and the Rebels were formed. From the Rebels came the Gray Bats and then the Militia. This current group of Ducks has several former Militia players. Last year when we moved down to Single A, several Ducks went to the Black Sox. Former Ducks manager and current outfielder TJ Morgan played on the Sox last year, current Sock, James Fago won a title as a Duck and managed the team for a couple seasons. Skovron was a Duck for two seasons. In 2010, Mark Guthrie shut down the Sox in game three of the finals to capture the Ducks 2nd championship.

razorr_ramon

Arguably the two most successful franchises in league history, the Ducks and Black Sox have been playing each other for nine years. This is likely the last season for the Sox, before they disperse and Rob Cool starts stalking Fago and that lefty they have.

There’s something about playing in Moore Park, with the terrible lights, the cigarette smoke and spilled beer in the the concrete bleachers, trying not to break your ankle in that gully on the first base line that brings out the best in the Ducks.

KellyLeak_cig

Bad News for the Black Sox

around the league

2014 South Oakland Ducks, NABA, pittsburgh NABA

18AA

The single A teams that moved up are getting massacred. The Pirates are surprisingly bad so far, and the Express off to a solid start. Other than that, it’s about as expected. West End apparently won’t play in April. Good luck with the pitching down the stretch when you have 4 games a week.

Screen Shot 2014-05-23 at 2.30.10 PM

Standings as of May 23rd. Look at some of those run differentials. Jesus.

Ashely Shaffer Kia of Northern West Virginia (6-0) is undefeated, and has only played one close game, a 3-2 win over the Black Sox (5-2).

The Cherokee are once again dominating the regular season. I predict a 22-2 record before their annual playoff letdown. At least a bunch of those guys still have a 2010 title to their credit.

cherokee2

Such an odd mix of fonts between the hat, jersey, and lettering on the picture. 

The Bulldogs Blog was off to a decent start, but has been quiet lately. They’ve had Christmas pictures up for the last 3 weeks. I can’t figure out how to link their site in our blogroll, or even where our blogroll is or how to make it visible. Sorry, guys.

18A

Standings as of May 23rd.

Screen Shot 2014-05-23 at 2.38.32 PM

The Warriors are off to a slow start but I expect them to pick it up.

51f9a305afa96f5b3b0029bc

They were missing some guys when we played them earlier this week. They also have Starting Lineup figures made for their team.

BaseballFuryRedClean-Front

The Senators managed to beat the Bombers 3-2 last week.

The Lions and Monsters, I assume, lack pitching depth given some of the scores of double headers they’ve played in.

The Lions have a sweet website. Lots of photoshop material. Here’s a link to the play by play of the last Ducks vs Lions game.

The Titans score about 5 runs a game and allow just under 7. When we play them, it may look like a football score. They took 3 of 4 from the monsters, but have lost to the senators and warriors. Kerry Collins is my favorite Titan.

Before they were the WOLFPACK!!!

pittsburgh naba

they were the Matadors

 

matadors naba

and the sharks

West Side Story -  The Sharks pittsburgh naba

That one side-arm pitcher was on our team for half a season. Effectively wild.

The Matadors were part of a ridiculous scandal involving an attempt to bribe the Owlz into forfeiting a game so the Bulldogs would miss the playoffs. Matador management was certain the Commish was out to get them, but I don’t think that guy runs the team anymore.

There was some bullshit involving the Sharks one year and some other team, but I forget what it was exactly. Maybe the Hurricanes were involved.

We play them Wednesday at our place. We need to get some Ducks fans in the seats that night. Tell people we have the bathroom key now. That may help.

Green-Duck

Your South Oakland Ducks (7-2) are in first place. The team has come together pretty well. Nothing helps chemistry like winning. If our pitchers keep throwing strikes, we should remain competitive. We will see how we handle a stretch in July when we have like 8 games in two weeks.

Iceberg will give us some innings at some point.

Iceburgh_

I’m still waiting for Culp, Swetz and Faust to be added to the league site so I can get their stats in. So far our stats are pretty good.

Strom has hit six batters in 21 innings pitched.

Also:

This site outlines how to build your own bobble head doll.

I think we should get stirrups.

It was great when people used to leave comments after these posts.

quack

 

Gamday 21: Ducks at Elliot

2013 South Oakland Ducks Baseball

Ducks

at

Elliot

6pm

Herschel Park

Screen Shot 2013-07-13 at 12.35.06 PM

Pittsburgh Standings as of  Sunday afternoon

We play 3 games in two days starting tonight against 2-time defending champion Elliot in Elliot.

We will have a forfeit win for one of our west end games, and play the other tomorrow night in a game that could be huge.

The Pirates have clinched a spot.

Carrick is technically still alive, but barely. (note: Carrick comes up as carsick in spell check)

Cranberry is falling fast.

The Militia went on a nice run as of late, but lost a tough one this morning.

The Black Sox play Carrick tonight, and still have to reschedule a game against the Bulldogs, before they play us tomorrow.

If we win-out we’re in.

Despite our respective records, we played Elliot close early this season, losing 9-7 and leaving a ton of guys on base.

Patten’s on the hill tonight.

Bad News for Elliot

Gameday 20: Ducks at Pour House

2013 South Oakland Ducks Baseball

South Oakland Ducks (7-12)

at

Pour House Pirates (7-10)

9:30AM

Hershel Park

The last time we played the Pirates we were pulling guys off the street to play, and we still put up 10 runs before an epic collapse in the top of the seventh in which Pour House scored nine unanswered and went on to beat us 14-10.

It would be nice if West End got nine together on Friday to at least force Pour House to use up some pitching. They play three games in four days and are one game ahead of us in the standings. This weekend is huge for playoff implications as we get down to the wire. We have almost all our starters available Saturday morning, so we don’t have any excuses if we can’t hold them under 14 runs.

Jesse Ferko is playing third.

Bad News for the Pirates

Ducks Sweep Bulldogs: 7-5, 10-1

2013 South Oakland Ducks Baseball, Ducks WIn, South Oakland Ducks Baseball

Ducks Pitcher, Mark Guthrie, earned his first victory of the season Saturday going five and a third strong innings, before giving way to James Fago to recorded the 1 and 2/3 inning save.

Matt Johnston had 4 hits to lead the resurgent Ducks’ offense. Stahl and Skovron both hit doubles and had multi-hit games, and there were a lot of singles and walks. Goering drove in a run. 8 Ducks starters recorded hits, and everyone in the lineup reached safely at least once. I wish I could offer more specifics, but i don’t have the book and I was half asleep during the game. We got out to an early lead and held on. The Bulldogs had the winning run at the plate in the bottom of the 7th.

James Fago pitched a complete game for the victory in game 2. South Oakland scored 2 in the top of the first. The Bulldogs answered with a run in the bottom half of the inning. The score remained 2-1 until the top of the fifth or sixth, when South Oakland scored six runs. Skovron and Fago walked, Gwin singled to load the bases and Matt Limbach doubled to make the score 4-1. Then Guthrie, Fetter and Goering singled in succession. Garret Moore drove in a run with an rbi ground out. Fago doubled in the top of the seventh and scored on an rbi ground out by Limbach.

The Bulldogs were 10-2 coming into the double header. With the victories, South Oakland raised it’s record to 6-11, and is a half game behind  Monroeville (5-9) and Carrick (6-10) who sit in 8th and 7th place respectively.

After a 1-9 start, the Ducks have won 5 of  7.

quack, quack.