If there would have been a poster of this rubber game of the 2021 Holland Series, it would show the two best pitchers in the Dutch hoofdklasse at the moment: Kevin Kelly for Curaçao Neptunus and Shairon Martis for L&D Amsterdam Pirates. In this clash of the Titans, Martis proved to be a bit better today and guided his team to a repeat.
A strange situation in which L&D Amsterdam Pirates repeated for the Dutch championship after winning it in 2019. In the 2020 Holland Series, the club had a 2-0 lead over Curaçao Neptunus but the series was called due to COVID-19.
This year both teams were equally matched. Pirates took a 2-0 lead in games once again but Neptunus fought back. The team from Rotterdam tied the game and even took a 3-2 lead in games. According to Berry van Driel, who pitched his final game today, Neptunus had the momentum going. But yesterday, L&D Amsterdam Pirates clinched a convincing 11-5 win to force a seventh game.
L&D Amsterdam Pirates 4 – 2 Curaçao Neptunus
For four innings, Kevin Kelly kept the Pirates lineup in check despite struggling to find the strikezone as he gave up four walks. In the fifth inning, Kelly issued his fifth walk of the day, which appeared to be the opening run. Raydley Legito drew this walk and eventually scored the opening run. But it was the omen of a bigger inning for Pirates. Five batters later, with runners on first and second, Kalian Sams hit a three-run jack on a 2-2 offering.
Despite giving up five hits in the first five innings, Shairon Martis managed to keep Curaçao Netpunus from scoring. But in the sixth, the multiple Dutch champion came through when John Polonius scored on a 4-3 groundout. Also in the eighth inning, Neptunus scored a run but it wasn’t enough to keep Pirates from winning its second consecutive title and sixth overall.
Being outhit is exaggerated, but Neptunus had clearly more base hits than Pirates: 9-4.
Shairon Martis earned the win as he pitched a complete game, for the third time in the 2021 Holland Series. He allowed two hits (one earned) on nine hits and struck out two. Kevin Kelly took the loss. He lasted seven innings in which he gave up four runs on four hits and seven walks and struck out five.
Denzel Richardson was the best hitter for L&D Amsterdam Pirates as he went 1 for 1. But by far the biggest contributor was Kalian Sams, who drove in three runs with a home run.