Dutch competion: Play Downs

It may appear strange to American baseball fans, but in the Netherlands, and actually in most European countries, we have a promotion/relegation system in our baseball leagues.

In the Netherlands, the highest league is the Hoofdklasse. The team that finishes last at the end of the season will play a series of play down games vs the winner of the Overgangsklasse. The latter is a league below the Hoofdklasse. So it can happen that the team from the hoofdklasse loses the series of Play Down games and will be relegated to the lower league. The last time that this happened was at the end of the 2012 season. Mampaey The Hawks from Dordrecht beat Sparta/Feyenoord from Rotterdam and was promoted to the Hoofdklasse. To Sparta/Feyenoord, this loss was the final blow and the club ceased to exist.

Now at the end of what is called Runner Up competition, Mampaey the Hawks ended the season in last place. This Runner Up competition is in fact a number of games between teams that didn’t make the playoffs. UVV from Utrecht ended on top of this Runner Up competion and has the right to organize the Dutch All Star Game next year.

In the Overgangsklasse, two teams are in very close range of each other at the top of the standings: DSS from Haarlem and Twins from Oosterhout. DSS is on top of the standings with 32 games played and 55 points. Twins is a close second with as many games played and 54 points. Even Orioles from Bergschenhoek (a suburb of Rotterdam) still has a chance with 48 points.
Including today (Saturday, September 6) there are still three rounds of a home game and a road game to be played.

No matter who wins it, this competion is very exciting.

One question remains: Will the winner of the Overgangsklasse be strong enough to beat Mampaey the Hawks and steal their Hoofdklasse spot?

We will know after the 21st of September when the current competition end and the Play Down series will start.

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