Sign in to follow this  
StLee

Tournament of Champions: Promotion, Relegation, and Forced Relocation

Recommended Posts

2014 Champions Bowl - First Round

 

September 12 Game

 
Capture_zpsed8752de.jpg
 
San Antonio 0 at Denver 3 - Denver wins 3-2
WP - Jose Mijares, LP - Joe Kelly, S - Craig Kimbrel
Game MVP - SP Francisco Liriano, Denver - 5 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 4 K
Series MVP - SP Francisco Liriano, Denver - 1-0, 12.2 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 8 BB, 15 K
Notes: Just like Game One, San Antonio failed to score a run in a game where Liriano started. Though the Buzzards were more successful getting on base in Game Five, they still could not manufacture a run....Joe Kelly pitched a complete game in the losing effort....The Peaks did not get its first runs until the 6th inning when PH Fernando Martinez and SS Dee Gordon got back-to-back doubles. 1B Ruben Aguilera drove in the second run on a two-out RBI single....2B Donald Woolhouse hit a solo home run in the seventh, only Denver's second of the series, to complete the scoring....CF Firdaus Jahangiri from Pakistan had two of the Buzzards' five hits. CF Cody Ross had the only extra-base hit, a two-out double in the first inning.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

Series Previews
 
Brooklyn Avengers (73-59 BL) at Cincinnati Cyclones (82-50 AL)
 
Brooklyn key players: 
1B Alberto Vasquez, .270, 33 HR, 85 RBI 
3B Lonnie Chisenhall, .282, 21 HR, 76 RBI
SP Stephen Strasburg, 8-9, 3.28 ERA
SP Carlos Cuevas, 12-6, 2.26 ERA
CL Amawal Hadda, 29 SV, 3.35 ERA
 
Cincinnati key players: 
C Pablo Sandoval, .329, 23 HR, 90 RBI
1B Justin Morneau, .308, 22 HR, 81 RBI
LF Nick Markakis, .307, 10 HR, 52 RBI
SP Cole Hamels, 19-3, 2.62 ERA
SP Daisuke Matsuzaka, 15-7, 3.53 ERA
 
 
Denver Peaks (90-42 GL) at San Diego Slammers (83-49 AL)
 
Denver key players: 
1B Ruben Aguilera, .258, 28 HR, 83 RBI
C Kidlat Escobal, .282, 22 HR, 79 RBI
SP Francisco Liriano, 13-3, 1.85 ERA
SP Danny Duffy, 16-5, 2.38 ERA
CL Craig Kimbrel, 40 SV, 1.18 ERA
 
San Diego key players:
RF Yasiel Puig, .345, 31 HR, 81 RBI
1B Richie Sexson, .234, 28 HR, 75 RBI
SP Jose Fernandez, 14-5, 2.22 ERA
SP Hyun-jin Ryu, 13-6, 3.24 ERA
SP Jake Peavy, 14-6, 3.72 ERA
 
 
Montreal Saints (78-54 BL) at Miami Towers (74-58 AL)
 
Montreal key players: 
C Wilson Ramos, .315, 19 HR, 61 RBI
2B Ian Kinsler, .265, 15 HR, 64 RBI
SP Matt Cain, 13-7, 3.27 ERA
SP Will Smith, 14-7, 2.80 ERA
CL Dana Eveland, 1.50 ERA, 41 SV
 
Miami key players:
LF Mike Trout, .320, 20 HR, 66 RBI
RF Andrew McCutchen, .341, 18 HR, 75 RBI
2B Jedd Gyorko, .292, 31 HR, 117 RBI
3B Antonio Rivera, .293, 19 HR, 92 RBI
1B Chris Carter, .234, 30 HR, 90 RBI
SP Madison Bumgarner, 13-11, 2.89 ERA
Big runs, so-so pitching
 
 
Minneapolis Blizzard (78-54 BL) at Phoenix Firebirds (79-53 AL)
 
Minneapolis key players: 
1B Mark Texeira, .311, 44 HR, 119 RBI
RF Dominic Brown, .279, 24 HR, 76 RBI
C Geovany Soto, .296, 21 HR, 66 RBI
SP Alex Cobb, 16-6, 3.60 ERA
CL Matt Belisle, 1.03 ERA, 41 SV
 
Phoenix key players: 
3B Morgan Ensberg, .280, 35 HR, 102 RBI
SS Starlin Castro, .348, 11 HR, 64 RBI
C Alex Avila, .279, 17 HR, 61 RBI
SP A.J. Burnett, 17-6, 3.04 ERA
SP Vance Worley, 9-8, 2.58 ERA

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

I might do these one at a time in case time gets in my way, which it usually does. 

 
September 14 games
 
Capture1_zps6361d408.jpg
 
Brooklyn 1 at Cincinnati 4 - Cincinnati leads 1-0
WP - Cole Hamels, LP - Stephen Strasburg, S - Andrew Russell
MVP - SP Cole Hamels, Cincinnati, 7 IP, 6 H, ER, BB, 8 K
Notes: 2B Josh Rutledge's three-run home run in the bottom of the seventh gave the Cyclones the lead for good. His blast was the only extra-base hit for Cincinnati. RF Clete Thomas also drove in a run in the inning on an RBI single....Strasburg was pitching a one-hitter until the four-hit, four-run seventh inning. The only other hit was a one-out single in the fifth. Strasburg finished with a line of 8 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, and 6 K. He pitched the entire game for the Avengers.... C Jason Castro hit a solo home run in the second inning to give Brooklyn the lead....The Avengers' 2B Robinson Cano and the Cyclones' Thomas were the only players with multiple hits. Each had two. Cano had a single and double.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 14 games

 
Capture2_zpsa68a9676.jpg
 
Montreal 5 at Miami 1 - Montreal leads 1-0
WP - Matt Cain, LP - Madison Bumgarner
MVP - SP Matt Cain, Montreal, 8 IP, 8 H, 0 ER, BB, 5 K
Notes: Bumgarner was roughed up for the first time in the post season, allowing five earned runs on nine hits with three walks and seven strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings....LF Garrett Atkins doubled twice for the Saints only extra-base hits in the game. Atkins finished 2 of 5 with two RBI....Catcher Wilson Ramos of Montreal and the Towers' CF Andrew McCutchen, 2B Jedd Gyorko, RF Valentyn Grave, and SS Russ Adams all had two hits.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 14 games

 
Capture3_zpsc3a08374.jpg
 
Minneapolis 2 at Phoenix 3 - Phoenix leads 1-0
WP - Robbie Weinhardt, LP - Ramon S. Ramirez, S - Rex Brothers
MVP - SP Vance Worley, Phoenix, 7 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 11 K
Notes: Firebirds' RF Will Venable hit a two-RBI double in the first to give Phoenix an early lead...Blizzards' 1B Mark Texeira's two-run home run in the seventh tied the game, 2-2....Phoenix CF Alvin Darke hit an RBI single in the eighth to win the game....Minneapolis SP Alex Cobb finished with a no decision. In seven innings, he allowed two earned runs on three hits with two walks and five strikeouts.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 14 games

 
Capture4_zps9f6ebbc7.jpg
 
Denver 1 at San Diego 2 - San Diego leads 1-0
WP - Jose Fernandez, LP - Danny Duffy, S - Brandon Cumpton
MVP - SP Jose Fernandez, San Diego, 7 IP, 4 H, ER, 2 BB, 10 K
Notes: The Slammers' first run came when SS Jorge Rodriguez hit into a double play....Duffy suffered the loss despite a respectable line: 7 IP, 5 H, 2 R, ER, BB, 7 K....There were no extra-base hits in the game....The Peaks' top hitter was catcher Kidlat Escobal, going 2 for 4 with an RBI....San Diego LF Jose Marquez and CF Alejandro de Aza each went 2 for 4 with a run scored.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

Let's see if I can't speed this up a little. 

 
September 15 games
 
Capture5_zpsf6f2580f.jpg
 
Game MVPs
 
1 - SP Frederico Olsen, Cincinnati, 8 IP, 3 H, ER, BB, 7 K
2 - SP A.J. Burnett, Phoenix, 8 IP, 6 H, ER, 2 BB, 6 K
3 - SP Esteban Romero, Denver, 7 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 9 K
4 - SP Matt Harrison, Miami, 7 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 K
 
Best Offensive Performers (since pitchers get named MVP in every damn game)
 
1 - 2B Jedd Gyorko, Miami, 2 for 4, 2 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI
2 - CF Axel Darke, Phoenix, 2 for 4, HR, 2 R, RBI
3 - RF Miquel Veldhoven, San Diego, 2 for 4, HR, R, 2 RBI
4 - RF Carlos Ortiz, Montreal, 3 for 4, 2 RBI

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 17 games - Game Three

 
Capture5_zps419d7e5b.jpg
 
Game MVPs
 
1 - SP Francisco Mata, Brooklyn, 8 IP, H, 0 ER, BB, 4 K
2 - SP Francisco Liriano, Denver, 6.2 IP, H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 6 K
3 - SP Jake Peavy, San Diego, 6.1 IP, 5 H, ER, 2 BB, 6 K
4 - SP Foppe Spitsbaard, Phoenix, 5.2 IP, 6 H, ER, 2 BB, 6 K
 
Top Offensive Performers
 
1 - LF Benny Watson, Denver, 2 for 4, HR, R, 3 RBI
2 - RF Mike Trout, Miami, 2 for 5, 2B, R, 3 RBI
3 - 1B Justin Morneau, Cincinnati, 1 for 4, HR, R, 3 RBI
4 - 1B Mark Texeira, Minneapolis, 1 for 4, HR, R, 3 RBI

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 18 games - Game Four

 
Capture6_zps46e58f33.jpg
 
Game MVPs
 
1 - SP Cole Hamels, Cincinnati, 7.1 IP, H, 0 ER, 10 K
2 - SP Jose Fernandez, San Diego, 9 IP, CG, 3 H, ER, 3 BB, 9 K
3 - SP Shigemasa Yamada, Miami, 7 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, BB, 6 K
4 - SP Alex Cobb, Minneapolis, 7 IP, 7 H, ER, BB, 9 K
 
Top Offensive Performers
 
1 - RF Will Venable, Phoenix, 3 for 4, 2 2B, R, 2 RBI
2 - LF Jon Jay, Minneapolis, 3 for 5, 2 R, RBI
3 - 2B Martin Prado, San Diego, 3 for 4, 2 R

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 19 game - Game Five

 
Capture1_zps83e755dc.jpg
 
San Diego 7 at Denver 10 - Denver leads 3-2
WP - Jose Mijares, LP - Tyler Chatwood, S - Craig Kimbrel
Game MVP - LF Benny Watson, Denver, 4 for 5, 2 R, 2 RBI
Notes: Finally some offense! But first, the starting pitchers comparison: San Diego's Hyun-jin Ryu, the guy who shares the same given name as my sister-in-law and whom all my Korean students ask me if I know when I tell them I love baseball, allowed six earned runs on 10 hits with two walks and five strikeouts in 5.1 innings. From the other dugout, the Peaks'  Esteban Romero gave up five earned runs on seven hits with a walk and three strikeouts in 4.2 innings....Of Denver's 17 hits, there were only four extra-base hits: two doubles and two triples....In addition to Watson's four hits, four other Peaks had multiple hits: CF Ezequiel Carrera was 3 for 4 with a double, two runs scored, and an RBI; 3B Ramiro Pena was 2 for 5 with a triple and an RBI; 2B Donald Woolhouse was 3 for 4 with a double, two runs, and an RBI; and SS Jhonny Peralta was 2 for 5 with a run scored....Derrick Robinson's pinch-hit, bases-loaded triple in the sixth inning gave Denver its first lead of the game, 6-5. Robinson also scored on a Carrera single to give the Peaks a 7-5 lead before the Slammers tied it in the eigth inning....1B Richie Sexson was San Diego's best hitter, going 3 for 4 with a home run, two runs, and two RBI....3B Eric Chavez also homered for the Slammers.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 19 game - Game Five

 
Capture2_zpsf581dc21.jpg
 
Miami 5 at Montreal 7 - Montreal leads 3-2
WP - J.J. Hoover, LP - Madison Bumgarner, S - Dana Eveland
Game MVP - 3B Antonio Rivera, Miami, 2 for 3, 2B, R, RBI, 2 BB
Notes: Miami's Bumgarner was pitching well until things fell apart in the seventh inning, giving up five runs that inning and losing the game. His final stat lines were seven innings pitched, seven hits, six earned runs, three walks, and four strikeouts. The sole home run allowed was a grad slam by the Saints'  LF Garrett Atkins. Atkins' slam proved to be the game-winning hit, giving Montreal a 6-5 lead....Montreal's Will Smith started the game but had a no-decision. In six innings, he allowed four runs, two earned, on four hits with five walks and two strikeouts....RF Carlos Ortiz had the most hits for the Saints, going 3 for 4 with two runs scored....Bumgarner had two of the Towers' eight hits and scored two of their five runs....RF Mike Trout and Rivera were the only other players with multiple hits. Trout was 2 for 4 with a run. Rivera had the Towers' only extra-base hit in the game.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 19 game - Game Five

 
Capture3_zps6ebb09e7.jpg
 
Phoenix 3 at Minneapolis 1 - Phoenix wins 4-1
WP - A.J. Burnett, LP - Joe Kennedy, S - Scott Feldman
Game MVP - SP A.J. Burnett, Phoenix, 7.1 IP, 5 H, ER, 3 BB, 6 K
Series MVP - SP A.J. Burnett, Phoenix, 15.1 IP, 11 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 5 BB, 12 K
Notes: Phoenix scored its three runs in the first four innings. The first run came in the first inning on a Kennedy wild pitch....Kennedy ran lots of counts deep, leading to an early exit. He finished by allowing three earned runs on nine hits with a walk and three strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings. Three Blizzards' relievers combined for the final 4 1/3 innings, allowing no runs on no hits with two strikeouts....The Firebirds' RF Urbano Peixeiro had the only extra-base hit of the game, hitting a solo home run in the second inning, which proved to be the game-winning hit....3B Morgan Ensberg, SS Starlin Castro, and 1B Brett Wallace all had two singles for Denver....1B Mark Teixeira and C Geovany Soto both had two singles for the Blizzards.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stuff

 

I know slowing down the dynasty has helped me to learn a bit more about what's going on in my leagues, but I keep finding that I want to tweak things here and there. I'm not so sure that's the best thing or not, but I want to try some different things. Therefore, some things may be quite different than how I reported them to be in previous announcements. For example, tournaments will work a but differently next season with some double elimination tournaments instead of just series. Also, I plan to make it "easier" to be relocated since only one franchise qualified and no other franchise is currently on the chopping block. I'm not sure yet how to do that. 

 
In other news, my New Mexico Suns' GM has been promoted to an executive position in the commissioner's office. Now my dynasty is back to God mode. This dynasty was not made for a day-to-day GM, and I regret that I wasted much of 2014 trying to concentrate on a single team. I almost abandoned this dynasty because of it.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 21 games - Game Six

 
Capture1_zpse7b301f0.jpg
 
Montreal 6 at Miami 7 - Tied 3-3
WP - Yusmeiro Petit, LP - Ricky Romero , S - Andy Sisco
Game MVP - C Wilson Ramos, Montreal, 4/4, HR, 2 R, RBI
Notes: Miami's Matt Harrison was pounded by the Saints, allowing six earned runs on 10 hits with a walk and three strikeouts in just four innings. The rest of the Towers' pitching staff allowed only four hits with a walk and seven strikeouts in the final five innings....The Saints' Romero fared worse, allowing seven earned runs on five hits with four walks and five strikeouts in 2.2 innings. Like Miami, Montreal's relievers went on to shut out Miami....The Towers only had seven hits but walked eight times...Miami had three doubles in their big 3rd inning that drove in six of their seven runs. The biggest of those hits was catcher Rob Brantly's bases loaded, bases clearing double that proved to be the game-winning hit since it made a 4-3 lead into a 7-3 domination....Miami only had one base runner with two outs in the 3rd when they went on their two-out tear against Romero.They had five of their seven hits in the inning....Seven different players each had a hit for the Towers....In addition to Ramos' big game, CF Drew Stubbs also had a big game for the Saints. He was 3 for 5 with a home run, two runs, and two RBI. 
 
 
Capture2_zps90026438.jpg
 
Denver 5 at San Diego 2, 10 innings - Denver wins 4-2
WP - Craig Kimbrel, LP - Brandon Cumpton, S - Jordan Lyles
Game MVP - 3B Ramiro Pena, Denver, 3 for 5, R, RBI, game-clinching RBI in 10th inning
Series MVP - LF Benny Watson, 10/22, HR, 5 R, 7 RBI
Notes: The Peaks' upset win marks the first time the #1 seed has failed to win its quarterfinal match up. The previous earliest exit was the Los Angeles Actors losing their semifinals match up against fourth-seed Montreal....Catcher Kidlat Escobal ruined a great game by San Diego's Brett Anderson with a two-run home run to tie the game, 2-2, in the eighth inning....The Slammers' Anderson allowed just two earned runs on five hits with seven strikeouts in eight innings. He was leading the game throughout before Escobal's home run....The Peaks' Francisco Liriano allowed two runs, one earned, on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts in 5.2 innings....In the final three innings, the San Diego offense managed no hits and struck out five times versus Denver relievers Danny Salazar, Kimbrel, and Lyles....The Slammers' LF Jose Marquez was the only player with multiple hits, getting two singles in four at bats. Catcher Josh Donaldson had their only extra-base hit, a double in the sixth inning.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Quarterfinals

 

September 22 game - Game 7

 
Capture4_zps4f5b22b4.jpg
 
Montreal 8 at Miami 5 - Montreal wins 4-3
WP - Matt Cain, LP - Luis Atilano, S - Dana Eveland
Game MVP - 2B Drew Stubbs, Montreal, 2 for 3, 2B, SF, R, RBI, BB
Series MVP - SP Matt Cain, Montreal, 2-0, 3 GS, 22.1 IP, 14 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 8 BB, 15 K
Notes: For the second straight year, there is a guarantee not to have an all-AL championship series. With Montreal's win, the BL pennant winners will take on the GL pennant winners, Denver, in one semifinal match up....Eight different players each had an RBI for the Saints....Only three players had more than one of the Saints' 15 hits. Catcher Wilson Ramos led the way by going 4 of 6 on the day. RF Carlos Ortiz added three hits, and Stubbs had two....Stubbs received the Game MVP thanks to the impact he had on the bottom of the order, reaching base on 3 of 5 of his plate appearances, with one of those plate appearances ending in a sacrifice fly....The Towers were probably better off starting anyone but Atilano in the final game after he struggled mightily in every other face off with Cain. Atilano finished by allowing six earned runs on 10 hits with four walks and two strikeouts in 5.1 innings....All four runs allowed by Cain came via Miami long balls. Towers' catcher Rob Brantly hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the first after LF Mike Trout reached via error. SS Russ Adams and Trout each also hit solo shots in the seventh inning....Those three home runs accounted for 60% of Miami's hits in the game. Adams also added a single and 2B Jedd Gyorko singled for the other two hits in the game.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Semifinals

 

Series Previews

 
Phoenix Firebirds (79-53, 3rd AL; Defeated Minneapolis 4-1 in Quarterfinals) vs Cincinnati Cyclones (82-50, 2nd AL; Diamond Trophy Winners; Defeated Brooklyn 4-0 in Quarterfinals)
 
Phoenix key players:
3B Morgan Ensberg, .280, 35 HR, 102 RBI
SS Starlin Castro, .348, 11 HR, 64 RBI
CF Axel Darke, .317, 32 HR, 83 RBI
SP A.J. Burnett, 17-6, 3.04 ERA
SP Vance Worley, 9-8, 2.58 ERA
 
Phoenix keys to victory:
* The top defense in baseball needs to make key plays against a base-to-base offense
* Lower the number of walks
* Get on base and then go for the long ball
* Keep games close with both the starters and relievers
* Give Worley run support
 
Cincinnati key players:
C Pablo Sandoval, .329, 23 HR, 90 RBI
1B Justin Morneau, .308, 22 HR, 81 RBI
LF Nick Markakis, .307, 10 HR, 52 RBI
SP Cole Hamels, 19-3, 2.62 ERA
SP Daisuke Matsuzaka, 15-7, 3.53 ERA
 
Cincinnati keys to victory: 
* Get strong starts from the 1-2 punch of Hamels and Matsuzaka. 
* Keep getting strong innings from the best bullpen in baseball
* Make the plays in the field with their strong defense
* Get base hits throughout the lineup
* Avoid getting into a power hitting war
 
 
Denver Peaks (90-42, 1st GL; Defeated San Diego 4-2 in Quarterfinals) vs Montreal Saints (78-54, 1 BL; Defeated Miami 4-3 in Quarterfinals)
 
Denver key players:
1B Ruben Aguilera, .258, 28 HR, 83 RBI
C Kidlat Escobal, .282, 22 HR, 79 RBI
SP Francisco Liriano, 13-3, 1.85 ERA
SP Danny Duffy, 16-5, 2.38 ERA
CL Craig Kimbrel, 40 SV, 1.18 ERA
 
Denver keys to victory:
* Get Liriano and Duffy to do their thing. Both can be dominant.
* Lead heading into the 9th. Kimbrel is money. 
* Snag bags when they get on base. Led all leagues with 137 steals. 
* Depend on their defense to turn double plays and prevent extra-base hits
* Hit consistently in the middle of their lineup. 
 
Montreal key players:
C Wilson Ramos, .315, 19 HR, 61 RBI
2B Ian Kinsler, .265, 15 HR, 64 RBI
SP Matt Cain, 13-7, 3.27 ERA
SP Will Smith, 14-7, 2.80 ERA
CL Dana Eveland, 1.50 ERA, 41 SV
 
Montreal keys to victory:
* Let Matt Cain and Will Smith lead the way. 
* Lead heading into the ninth. Dana Eveland is just as effective as Kimbrel. 
* Find ways to get hot on offense. May have to take chances on the base paths. 
* Continue to get production from the bottom of the order, just like they did in the Quarterfinals against Miami.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Semifinals

 

September 24 game - Game One

 
Capture5_zpsd950175e.jpg
 
Phoenix 5 at Cincinnati 1 - Phoenix leads 1-0
WP - Vance Worley, LP - Cole Hamels
Game MVP - SP Vance Worley, Phoenix, 5.1 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, K
Notes: A 58-minute rain delay in the bottom of the sixth chased Worley earlier than he would have left. The Firebirds were leading 3-0 at the time....Hamels also left the game after the delay. He pitched six innings, allowing three earned runs on six hits with three walks and three strikeouts....In a game lacking much offense, Firebirds' leadoff hitter Axel Darke was the most successful, going 2 of 5 with a double, triple, two runs scored, and an RBI. He was the only player from either team with multiple hits....The Cyclones did not get their first hit of the game until Clete Thomas hit a two-out, two-strike single in the bottom of the fifth inning. Manny Machado hit a one-out triple in the sixth for their first extra-base hit right before the rain delay took effect....This was the 16th meeting during the season for the Firebirds and Cyclones, including the regular season and postseason. Cincinnati leads the series 9-7 after Phoenix's victory. The teams split their 12-game regular season series, but the Cyclones swept Phoenix in three games in the Diamond Trophy tournament.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Semifinals

 

September 24 game - Game One

 
Capture1_zpsdc1bd38d.jpg
 
Denver 3 at Montreal 13 - Montreal leads 1-0
WP - Will Smith, LP - Danny Duffy
Game MVP - C Wilson Ramos, Montreal, 4/5, 2 2B, HR, 3 R, 2 RBI
Notes: Ramos may have won the game, but Saints' pitcher Smith did his part, too. Smith allowed just two earned runs on three hits with five walks and six strikeouts in seven innings. He also was 1 for 3 at the plate with a two-run home run in the sixth inning. It was his second home run both this season and for his career. He also hit a home run on September 2 versus Brooklyn....Denver's Duffy was roughed up in the game. He allowed six runs, five earned, on seven hits with two walks and two strikeouts in just 2.2 innings. Reliever Kris Benson did not fare any better, giving up four earned runs on six hits with two strikeouts in two innings of relief....3B Ramiro Pena had two of Denver's three singles in the game....All three of the Peaks' runs came via outs: two sacrifice flies and an RBI ground out...Other big performances for the Saints included: CF Drew Stubbs - 2/5, grand slam, R, 4 RBI; 1B Kole Calhoun - 2/5, HR, 2 R, 3 RBI; 3B Cliff Pennington - 2/4, 2 R, BB.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Semifinals

 

September 25 games - Game Two

 
Capture2_zps37175e28.jpg
 
Phoenix 4 at Cincinnati 3 - Phoenix leads 2-0
WP - A.J. Burnett, LP - Frederico Olsen, S - Rex Brothers
Game MVP - CF Axel Darke, Phoenix, 2/4, 2B, HR, R, 4 RBI
Notes: Darke's three-run home run with no outs in the top of the first gave the Firebirds a lead they would never relinquish. Darke also drove in the Firebirds' fourth run in the fifth inning on an RBI double....Burnett got the win by spreading Cincinnati's hits. In seven innings, he allowed three earned runs on 11 hits with two walks and four strikeouts....The Cyclones' Olsen allowed four earned runs on eight hits with a walk and six strikeouts in six innings....Leadoff LF Nick Markakis was the best offensively for Cincinnati, going 2 for 5 with a home run, two runs scored, and two RBI. Three other Cyclones also had two hits....2B Edgar V. Gonzalez was the only other Firebird with multipe hits, going 2 for 4 from the leadoff spot with a double and run scored (first inning on Darke's home run). 
 
 
Capture3_zps03d1b9a4.jpg
 
Denver 2 at Montreal 3 - Montreal leads 2-0
WP - Ricky Romero, LP - Jose Mijares, S - Dana Eveland
Game MVP - RF/LF Victor Ledesma, Denver, 3/4, HR, R, 2 RBI
Notes: Neither team had much offense, nor did either starting pitcher really dominate, thus Ledesma's Game MVP nod....Francisco Liriano got the start for the Peaks, but he had to leave the game early due to fatigue. In just 4.1 innings, he pitched 90 times, allowing two earned runs on six hits with two walks and three strikeouts. He was pulled after giving up a solo home run to CF Drew Stubbs with one out, a home run that tied the game, 2-2. Mijares then entered the game, walking LF Garrett Atkins. After a wild pitch and passed ball, 2B Ian Kinsler was able to get the go-ahead RBI for the Saints on a sacrifice fly....Montreal's other run came in the first inning when Stubbs singled and stole second base. Kinsler later drove him in on an RBI single....Romero's final stat line was two earned runs on seven hits with three walks and seven strikeouts in six innings....Five Montreal relievers combined to pitch the final three innings. The only scare came in the eighth when Blake Wood walked the first two batters he faced before being pulled....Eveland allowed two base runners to reach with two outs in the ninth before getting the game-ending strikeout.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Semifinals

 

September 27 games - Game Three

 
Capture4_zps5872ba02.jpg
 
Cincinnati 18 at Phoenix 13 - Phoenix leads 2-1
WP - Daisuke Matsuzaka, LP - Foppe Spitsbaard
Game MVP - 3B Nolan Arenado, Cincinnati, 3/4, 2B, HR, 3 R, 4 RBI, BB
Notes: The two teams combined for 31 runs, 33 hits, and 16 extra-base hits (10 doubles, a triple, and five home runs)....Phoenix's RF Will Venable finished 3 for 5 with a home run, two runs, and three RBI to pace the Firebirds' offense....The Cyclones' other impressive offensive players were SS Troy Tulowitzki (3 for 5, HR, 3 R, 2 RBI, BB) and C Pablo Sandoval (3 for 6, 2 2B, R, RBI). 1B Justin Morneau, RF Clete Thomas, and 2B Josh Rutledge each drove in two runs for Cincinnati....Matsuzaka had an interesting line in earning the win. In five innings, he allowed six runs, only one earned, on seven hits with two strikouts.  All five runs the Firebirds scored in the fifth inning were thanks to Rutledge's error, meaning all five runs were unearned....Felix Hernandez fared poorly in relief for the Cyclones, allowing four earned runs on three hits with two walks, a strikeout, and two home runs in just one inning....Phoenix's starter Spitsbaard gave up only two earned runs on three hits with a walk and three strikeouts in three innings. He earned the loss because the Firebirds trailed the entirety of the game. He also had to leave after his shoulder gave him troubles in the third inning. It is questionable whether or not he can pitch again this post season, and he is likely to miss his next start....Cincinnati's reliever Francisco Ramirez also had to leave the game early with a busted blister....The Firebirds' bull pen did not do much better than Cincinnati's. Yoervis Medina was the biggest culprit, allowing five earned runs on three hits with two walks in just 1/3 innings pitched. Other multiple runs allowed: Alfredo Aceves gave up four earned runs in 2/3 innings; Phil Clay gave up two earned runs in 1.1 innings; and Robbie Weinhardt allowed three runs, two earned, in 2/3 innings. 
 
 
Capture5_zpsc5d581b7.jpg
 
Montreal 2 at Denver 4 - Montreal leads 2-1
WP - Esteban Romero, LP -  Matt Cain, S - Craig Kimbrel
Game MVP - SP Esteban Romero, Denver, 8 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 6 K
Notes: Montreal used only nine players in the game. Cain pitched all eight innings he was eligible, allowing four earned runs on eight hits with two walks and two strikeouts....CF Ezequiel Carrera was the top batter in the game, going 2 for 4 with a double, triple, two runs, and RBI....1B Rick Aguilera drove in Carrera both times he reached base....Romero was the game's MVP for both his pitching and his bat. In addition to his pitching line above, he was 1 for 2 at the plate with an RBI double in the fifth inning....The Saints only had one extra-base hit in the game when SS Jose Altuve doubled in the sixth inning. He had two hits in the game....CF Drew Stubbs was once again the most valuable bat in the Saints' line up, going 2 for 4 with a run scored and an RBI.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Semifinals

 

September 28 games - Game Four

 
Capture1_zpsce79b00f.jpg
 
Cincinnati 5 at Phoenix 2 - Tied 2-2
WP - Carl Valckenburgh, LP - Vance Worley, S - Andrew Russell
Game MVP - SP Carl Valckenburgh, Cincinnati, 6.2 IP, 5 H, ER, BB, 6 K
Notes: Due to fatigue issues in the Cyclones' pitching staff, Valckenburgh got the start despite not being scheduled to start in the series. It seems the Cincinnati coaching staff made the correct decision!...Phoenix 2B Edgar V Gonzalez was injured in the bottom of the first when he collided with Cincinnati SS Troy Tulowitzki on a fielder's choice at second base. He had to be removed from the game and was replaced by Urbano Peixeiro. He was being evaluated for a possible sprained ankle and will be day-to-day for the remainder of the series....C Pablo Sandoval had the game-winning hit for the Cyclones, a grand slam in the seventh, to put Cincinnati up 5-1. For the game, Sandoval finished 2 of 4 with a home run, run scored, and four RBI....SS Starlin Castro had the best game offensively for the Firebirds. In four at bats, he had three singles and scored a run....CF Axel Darke, who was involved on the play where Gonzalez was hurt, had Phoenix's only extra-base hit, an RBI double in the eighth inning. 
 
 
Capture2_zpsfa8538aa.jpg
 
Montreal 4 at Denver 5 - Tied 2-2
WP - Craig Kimbrel, LP - Dana Eveland
Game MVP - SP Danny Duffy, Denver, 6.2 IP, 8 H, 2 R, ER, 7 K, 2 for 2 batting, 2B, R, RBI
Notes: Duffy had the no decision thanks to Kimbrel's blown save, but he did have a hell of a game, not only through his pitching, but also having his bat lead directly to two of the Peaks' runs....Montreal's Eric Sogard hit a pinch-hit, game-tying single in the top of the ninth to tie the game, 4-4. His hit came right after RF Carlos Ortiz doubled with one out....Denver answered in the ninth, though. With two outs and runners on first and second from a walk and single to lead off the inning, CF Ezequiel Carrera hit an RBI single to score 2B Donald Woolhouse and end the game....2B Ian Kinsler was the Saints' most successful hitter, going 2 for 4 with a home run, run scored, and RBI. His home run came in the eighth inning off Peaks' reliever Jordan Lyles.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Semifinals

 

September 29 games - Game Five

 
Capture1_zps621e3d5b.jpg
 
Cincinnati 0 at Phoenix 2 - Phoenix leads 3-2
WP - Jeremy Bonderman, LP - Cole Hamels, S - Rex Brothers
Game MVP - SP Jeremy Bonderman, Phoenix, 8 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 10 K
Notes: Bonderman was the fourth different starting pitcher for the Firebirds in the series....Of the Cyclones' five hits, two were by C Pablo Sandoval, both doubles. Sandoval had the only extra-base hits in the game for Cincinnati....3B Morgan Ensberg was the only Phoenix hitter with multiple hits. He singled twice....2B Edgar V. Gonzalez's first-inning home run was the only extra-base hit for the Firebirds. It also proved to be the game-winning hit. 
 
 
Capture2_zps9cc7c970.jpg
 
Montreal 2 at Denver 6 - Denver leads 3-2
WP - Francisco Liriano, LP - Will Smith
Game MVP - SP Francisco Liriano, Denver, 6 IP, 5 H, ER, 2 BB, 5 K
Notes: The home team has won every game so far in this series....Smith had another poor showing. In 3.1 innings, he allowed five earned runs on seven hits with two walks and four strikeouts....In Smith's doomed fourth inning where he gave up four of the five Peaks' runs, the big hit was by Denver 1B Ruben Aguilera. He hit a one-out, three-run home run to give Denver a 5-1 lead and chase Smith. Aguilera's blast was the only extra-base hit by the Peaks....Denver had two players with two hits: 3B Ramiro Pena and RF Victor Ledesma....2B Ian Kinsler of Montreal went deep for the second straight day with a solo shot in the ninth. He now leads all Saints in the Tournament of Champions Bowl with four. In the game, he was 2 of 4 with a home run, run, and two RBI.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2014 Champions Bowl - Semifinals

 

October 1 game - Game Six

 
Capture2_zps91ae42e0.jpg
 
Phoenix 4 at Cincinnati 1 - Phoenix wins 4-2
WP - A.J. Burnett, LP - Frederico Olsen, S - Rex Brothers
Game MVP - SP A.J. Burnett, Phoenix, 7 IP, 4 H, ER, 2 BB, 4 K
Series MVP - CF Axel Darke, Phoenix, 9 of 24, 3 2B, 3B, 2 HR, 6 R, 9 RBI, 2 BB
Notes: Phoenix SS Starlin Castro was having a great game--3 of 3 with a double--before he was injured in the sixth inning with a hand contusion and had to leave the game.He was the only Firebirds' batter to have more than one hit in the game....Series MVP Darke just missed a home run in the first inning, leaving him one RBI short of double digits in the series. He finished the game with his lowest output of the series: 1 for 3 with a run and a walk....Cyclones SS Troy Tulowitzki may have earned MVP honors had Cincinnati taken the series. He was the only player to have multiple hits with the Cyclones, going 2 for 4 in the game....Cincinnati had no RBI in the game. Their one run came as the result of a walk, single, passed ball, and then wild pitch....Cincinnati pitcher Olsen allowed four earned runs on seven hits with two walks and seven strikeouts in 7.2 innings.... The Cyclones' loss denies them the chance to be the first team to win both the Diamond Trophy and the Tournament of Champions Bowl.The only other team that pulled off a similar accomplishment was the first season on the tournaments when the Charlotte Flyers improbably won both the Gamma League and Tournament of Champions Bowl.

Who Dat? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this