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.
The South Oakland Ducks of the Northside won their third straight game Sunday in Spring Hill. Billy Welsh (W, 1-0) threw 7 innings for his first win as a Duck, and James Fago struck out the side in the bottom of the eighth for his first save of the season.
The Ducks held a 3-1 lead going into the bottom of the seventh, then Bakery Square tied the game on an Eric Friend, two-out, two-run double to left. John Friend led off the inning with a bunt single.
Matt Mullen led off the eighth with a single and stole second. Tom Pulice drove in what proved to be the game-winning run with a double to the right-center gap. Gwin and Brandt also drove in insurance runs in the inning.
Big missed opportunity by the Bandidos to not rebrand as the Toros, and go with these unis.
The win brings the Ducks record to 3-3. The Bandidos fall to 2-2.
South Oakland plays next against the Devils, Monday night, 8pm at Volunteers Field in Carrick.
John Zuzak (W, 1-0) threw 6 2/3 shutout innings in his first career start to lead the Ducks to a 4-0 victory in Elliot last night. Zuzak was also 2-for-2 at the plate. Tom Pulice drove in the game winning run with a single in the first inning. Maldonado, Lombardi and Gwin were hit by D2 pitchers. The shutout was South Oakland’s fourth of the season. The Ducks (16-8) finished the season with the fewest runs allowed (65) in AA, and have won nine of their last ten games. D2 falls to 8-14 with the loss.
The Ducks will play D2 in the first round of the playoffs this Saturday.
South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (15-8)
Pittsburgh D2 (8-14)
The Ducks look to avoid being swept by D2, and clinch second place tonight in Elliot. South Oakland has struggled this season against D2, losing 4-0 and 6-4 in two earlier matchups. Today’s game will determine whether the Ducks will get the 2 or 3 seed and D2 can still finish between 7 and 9 depending on tie breakers. These two teams could meet again on Saturday in the playoffs.
D2 will throw one of their seven starters, maybe the same guy who shut us down twice already this year. I don’t know if they’re trying to save arms for Saturday or what.
D2 may have based the color scheme of their new unis off the red, white, and blue team USA jerseys in D2: The Mighty Ducks. Also went with white primary color to honor the jersey change to the Anaheim home Ducks jerseys at intermission during the finals that brought the team together. I think it’s a great homage.
The Commish is on the hill for the Ducks tonight.
Bad news for D2
Tony Casale lead the way with four hits, and the back end of the Ducks rotation pitched five solid innings to help South Oakland to its fourth straight win yesterday in Shaler. Cody Quinn started and went two innings, pitching around a couple fly balls that could have been caught, and allowing one run. Ben Sorosky (W, 1-0) pitched three solid innings before James Fago converted the six-out save (7).
The Ducks took a 2-1 lead in the fourth when Lombardi doubled in Casale, and Clark singled home Lombardi. Bauerstown scored in the bottom half of the inning off a double, HBP and a single.
South Oakland added two in the fifth on a walk, fielders choice and two singles. Then they added three more in the seventh on four straight hits, and an RBI double by Fago to put the game out of reach. Cody just missed going yard.
Fago’s seven saves is a single season Pittsburgh NABA record until someone tells me otherwise.
Casale for MVP.
The Ducks finish up the season on the road against D2, Tuesday night, 6:15 at Herschel Park.
South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (12-8)
Hebrew Oilers (13-7)
South Oakland looks to sweep the season series against defending champion BIG OIL tonight in East Liberty. The Ducks and Oilers both have an outside shot at overtaking the Grizzlies (14-5), and theoretically Cranberry (13-2) could also collapse. It should be a good matchup in the latest chapter of the Ducks/Oilers rivalry.
With the WOLFPACK’s forthcoming dissolution imminent, the Oilers and Jays have to be neck and neck for most hated team in Double A. We will see the Jays on Saturday on the field with no mound, provided last night’s rain didn’t destroy it.
The odds of winning the division or getting the two seed are not in our favor. We still want a home game in the first round, and a better draw in he tournament, so our last four games are important.
We want to go into the post season playing well. A win tonight would at least prevent the Oilers from getting the two seed, and that should be plenty of motivation.
Bad News for BIG OIL
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
South Oakland Ducks of the North Side
The Ducks look to right the ship when they take on the Grizzlies tonight in Munhall.
We need a win to secure a spot in the top six and avoid the play-in games. I think our magic number is 2. The Eagles and D2 both have 12 losses, and we are at 11 wins if we count our never rescheduled game from April against West View as a win. Both those teams have the tie-breaker over us.
Somehow we’ve lost 4 games combined to two six-win teams. Add that to a few other close losses this year, and I can’t tell if we’re lucky to have ten wins, or if we should have fifteen right now. I don’t think we’ve really hit well yet, but we’re running out of time for our luck to change.
We finish with five games against four teams ahead of us in the standings, and one more against D2 who we can’t seem to beat this season. The Grizzlies won like twelve in a row at one point, and with Cranberry’s magical season, everyone else has basically been playing for third place all year unless someone collapses. But we want to be playing well heading into the postseason, and tonight against a tough team will be a good gage to see where we are at. I like our chances at home.
Bad news for the Grizzlies
South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (10-7)
South Oakland looks to extend its four game win streak tonight against Pittsburgh D2. It should be another good game, as we played to a frustrating 4-0 loss earlier in the season after we left a bunch of guys on base, and made a few costly errors. We should have a better turnout tonight than we did for last game against D2, so maybe that will help.
I don’t know how D2 has such a poor record. I feel like they have five, 20-year-olds that throw strikes, and they can run. I have no idea what “D2” stands for. District Two? some kind of nebulous corporate sponsor? Who knows.
This is the start of a hectic stretch of games to end the season. We play tonight, Grizzlies on Wednesday, Oilers Friday, Jays Saturday, Grizzlies again on Sunday, and we still have another makeup game with D2 to schedule.
The other postponed D2 game was going to be played Monday, but somehow the WOLFPACK! are breathing their last breath on the final week of the season just to make teams that weren’t scheduled to play them in June waste arms, and take up rain dates from teams that didn’t forfeit a whole month’s worth of games. We will get a forfeit for the WOLFPACK! game that was rained out in April that we tried to reschedule but didn’t get a response from West View management. What a shit show. That West View win, means our next victory this year will secure a .500 record, which is a step along the way to hopefully positioning ourselves to get a good draw in the playoffs and make another deep run this year.
I like our chances tonight at the Duck Pond.
Bad News for D2
South Oakland Ducks of the North Side (7-7)
South Hills Devils (9-8)
The Ducks and the Devils will try to separate from the middle of the pack in a matchup full of playoff implications, tonight in Munhall. South Hills looks to avenge an early season 8-1 loss to the Ducks. Tonight’s game figures to be a much closer contest.
A win tonight, and our upcoming forfeit victory against West View and suddenly we could find ourselves on a three game winning streak. So it’d be a 2-for-1 tonight if we can beat the Devils at home.
Bad news for South Hills