The Chicago Architects are trying to win their third title but are down 0-2. History tells us being down in the playoffs means very little to this team. They have rallied from 0-3 deficits before, so 0-2 probably seems inconsequential, or at least it does not evoke the feeling of doom that some GMs might feel in this position.
Chicago General Manager Al B. had this to say this morning, “Oh, they’re off to a decent start. In their case they won’t have a chance to lose one at home until Game Six, and they may have wrapped it up by then. You gotta like their chances. But I like mine too. I have no idea who the better team is, but mine has always had a tendency to fall behind and come back.” The small sampling of 4-0 in the regular season points toward Hamilton as the favorite, especially up by two games.
Toronto tied the game, 4-4, in the bottom of the seventh. With runners on second and third, Jesse Stannard singled to left. The runner on third scored, tying the game, while the runner on second tried for home… but was thrown out. After that, there were some singles and walks, but a runner didn’t reach scoring position until the 10th (when Toronto’s Michael Howard got stranded at third) and then the 18th (when Windsor’s Harry O’Connell hit a lead-off doubled but was stranded at third). Runners reached second in the 20th (single and sac bunt) and 21st innings (walk and ground out that advanced the runner). In the top of the 26th, Windsor’s Christophe Sarrazin doubled with two outs and got stranded. In the bottom of that inning, Michael Howard led off with a triple and was driven in by Jesse Stannard to win the game.
Godzilla Garcia is not only threatening to hit .400, but he is actually raising his average as this past week saw his batting line go from .420 to .423. In last evening’s contest he went 3-for-4 against the Neptune’s with a double. Toledo managed to win 6-1 as their challenger for the batting title, Carl MacNiven, went 2-for-4 with his own double to ease his average back up to .389, yet at the same time quieting conversation about whether he might hit .400.
When you are 23 years old and playing at the GLBL level, you are usually riding the bench hoping for an opportunity for a spot start here and there, always with the hope that you impress the manager enough to give you another opportunity, hopefully in the form of a start. Less likely, but still possible, you might be the benefactor of a long term injury to a player that moves you up the depth chart (Google Wally Pipp).
After 59 games he was hitting .395. Having played 106 games, Carl is now at .396 and definitely capturing the attention of stat freaks all over the Great Lakes area. Is the 36 year old second sacker distracted with all the media attention?
Carl had this to say: “Are you serious? We’ve got a pennant to win. Anything else is back seat stuff, mister.”
We know where the man is physically located—at the Bay of Quinte, midway between Kingston and Toronto. This little fishing village is home to the Triple-A Herons where Walt James plays his baseball these days. But it wasn’t always this way for James as but two years ago he was east of this sleepy village, stealing bases, hitting extra base hits, and posting a 3.8 WAR for the Kingston Comets, part of the GLBL.
Tied for the league with 24 is Dave ‘Mustache’ Teague. He’s been an All Star every season, won three Lake Erie Awards, was twice the MVP in the Canadian Playoffs, is hitting .304 with a .974 OPS, and plays three different positions. Throw in 47 BB/50 K ratio and you have quite an offensive force. Teague has a lifetime 124 dingers and has hit less than 20 just one time. Many pick him to win the home run crown while vying for League MVP.
On July 16, 2021, Jean Vilain handcuffed the Traverse City Bears, striking out 11, walking but two, and allowing no hits in the 2-0 No-No for the Waveriders. For Jean, it was deja vu all over again as two years ago, while pitching for the Toronto Maples, he shut down the Windsor Vigilantes racking up six strikeouts, yielding two walks, and allowing zero in the hit column.
With seven no-hitters in the six-year history of the GLBL, Vilain now owns two of them.
Roberto Nieto is on his way to the majors. The seventh overall prospect has risen through the minors at a meteoric pace. The 2021 sixth overall pick has already graduated from Double-A in half a season and is now raising eyebrows at Triple-A Pointe Pelee.
Nine home runs in 166 at bats, a 36/44 BB/K rate, a .417 on-base percentage, a .506 slugging percentage, and two stolen bases in two attempts all point to a four-tool player in the making (slow afoot). His six assists in the outfield speak to the potential for a cannon for an arm. Look for the Oakdale, Minnesota native and graduate of Western Ontario to make his mark sooner rather later in the Great Lakes Baseball League.