So far the tournament has been plagued by inclement weather, so the schedule has been reshuffled. Yesterday’s game between the Bonn Capitals and Curaçao Neptunus was rescheduled for today at 16.00. Other scheduled games were: Draci Brno @ Heidenheim Heideköpfe, Arrows Ostrava @ Curaçao Neptunus, Parmaclima @ Heidenheim Heideköpfe (remainder of yesterday’s game), L&D Amsterdam Pirates @ Parmaclima, and T&A San Marino @ Bonn Capitals.
Draci Brno 2 – 8 Heidenheim Heideköpfe
So far, the tournament is everything but a success for Draci Brno. Last year the club earned a promotion to the ECC by winning the CEB cup, now called the Confederation Cup, but until today, the club lost all games. It wouldn’t be any different today.
The Heidenheim Heideköpfe opened the score in the second inning, when Yannic Walther hit into a force out at second base and drove in Luke Sommer. But Draci tied the game in the next inning. With Filip Mostek at third base, Martin Cervinka hit a sac fly to left center field. In the bottom of the same inning, Heidenheim regained the lead and never looked back. Back-to-back homers by Shawn Larry and Gary Owens drove in two more runs for the Heideköpfe. In the remainder of the game, Heidenheim would score five more runs, one in the fifth inning, two in the seventh, and two in the eighth. All that Brno could do was adding one more run in the ninth on a solo shot by Pabel Leandro Manzanero Norato.
Dutchy Mike Bolsenbroek proved to be a workhorse as he went the distance with hundred twenty-three pitches. He allowed two runs on six hits and a walk, and struck out nine for the win. Vaclav Taus took the loss. In 6.1 innings, he gave up five runs on eight hits and three walks and struck out six. His performance gave the bullpen a much needed rest.
Luke Sommer was the best hitter for the Heidenheim Heideköpfe as he went 3 for 4 with a double, an RBI and a run scored.
Arrows Ostrava 4 – 9 Curaçao Neptunus
Dutch hoofdklasse fans know by now that a 4-1 lead is never safe in the final innings against Neptunus. Arrows Ostrava learned the hard way. With one blow in the eighth inning, Dashenko Ricardo put Neptunus in the drivers seat.
In a matchup between the Czech champion and the Dutch runner up of 2021, Curaçao Neptunus took an early lead when Dwayne Kemp could score on Rogear Bernadina’s groundout. But Ostrava bounced back in the third inning and took the lead. Dadim Novotny doubled to left center field and drove in the game tying run. With runners on the corners, Jakub Malik flied out to center field to drive in Mathias Schwarzinger to give Arrows the lead. A fielding error by Dwayne Kemp on a “hit” by Matyas Kozel, allowed Arrows to score two more runs. Ostrava had a major opportunity to extend their score in the fourth inning. The team loaded the bases with no outs, but thanks to a strikeout and the help of his defense, due to a double play, Kaj Timmermans got out of the jam. And there is some unwritten rule, if you don’t take advantage of opportunities like this, your opponent will, which happened in the eight. Dashenko Ricardo hit the aforementioned grand slam but Neptunus added four more runs for a result that didn’t do justice to the previous seven innings, as the team from Rotterdam didn’t get a grip on the pitches of Boris Bokaj, who kept them in check for seven frames, but took the loss nonetheless. The win went to Kaj Timmermans, who went the distance and allowed four runs (two earned) on nine hits and a walk and struck out nine.
Christian Diaz was the best hitter for Curaçao Neptunus, as he went 2 for 3 with a run scored.
L&D Amsterdam Pirates 12 – 4 Parmaclima
In a game that was closer than the final score tells us, L&D Amsterdam Pirates clinched a spot in the semi finals.
Thanks to a solo home run by Denzel Richardson, Pirates took a 1-0 lead. But Parmaclima countered in the bottom of the same inning thanks to a two-run homer by Manuel Marcelo Joseph Timo and an RBI-double by Alex Sambucci. On its turn, Pirates took the lead again in the top of the second inning. With runners on the corners, Tommy van de Sanden homered. With runners on first and second, Denzel Richardson singled through the left side to drive in Rachid Engelhardt. Parma would score one more run in the third, but that was all the team was capable of. Pirates kept scoring runs. One in the fourth and two in the eighth, to give the team a comfortable 7-4 lead. But the Pirates’ offense wasn’t satisfied yet.
In the ninth, Pirates added four more runs thanks to a two-run single by Roelie Henrique, an RBI-single by Denzel Richardson, and a bases-loaded walk, drawn by Sharlon Schoop.
Shairon Martis had a solid outing. He pitched nine innings in which he allowed four runs on eight hits and a walk, and struck out seven for the win. Jose Alexander Diaz Lezama took the loss. He lasted two innings and gave up five runs on seven hits and a walk, and struck out three.
Best hitter for L&D Amsterdam Pirates was Denzel Richardson, who went 5 for 6 and was a triple shy of the cycle. He drove in four runs and scored once.
Bonn Capitals 8 – 5 Curaçao Neptunus
A quick start by Curaçao Neptunus, followed by several strong innings of the Bonn Capitals’ offense, resulted in a surprising final score.
Neptunus took a 1-0 lead in the first inning, but Bonn Captilas bounced back in the top of the second and scored twice. Neptunus tied the game in the bottom of the second when Greg Muller hit a solo home run to center field. But then in the third inning, Bonn jumped on Aaron de Groot and routed him for four runs thanks to an RBI-double by Daniel Sánchez, an RBI-single by Vincent Ahrens, a sac fly by Adrian Stommel, and an RBI single by Danny Lankhorst. In the seventh inning, a two run shot by Wilson Lee, added some insurance runs for the Germans. In the end, the game would become quite a nail biter when Neptunus inched closer. In the eighth inning, with the bases loaded and one out, Raydley Legito singled up the middle to drive in Faas Sluijter. Then, Stijn van der Meer drew a bases loaded walk for the second run of the inning. With two outs, Michale Miceli took over on the mound and got out of the pickle. But Micelli got into trouble in the ninth inning. He started by giving up a solo home run to John Polonius and then allowed runners on first and second. Time to bring Dovydas Neverauskas, the former MLB and NPB pitcher of the Bonn Capitals. Neverauskas kept his cool and retired the final two batters to record the save. Sascha Koch, who pitched five innings, earned the win. He gave up two runs on eight hits and two walks, and struck out four. Aaron de Groot lasted 4.2 innings and was tabbed with the loss. De Groot gave up six runs on eight hits and a walk and struck out five.
The best hitter for the Bonn Capitals was Danny Lankhorst, who went 3 for 4.
T&A San Marino – Bonn Capitals
The devil was in the tail of the regular innings of this game. After San Marino had take the lead, it looked like they would get an easy win. But Bonn didn’t go down without a fight.
After Bonn opened the score thanks to an RBI-double by Eric Brenk in the third inning, the Italian champion took the lead in the top of the fourth thanks to an RBI-single and two sac flies. Thanks to Erick Epifano’s double to left field, San Marino could score another run in the fifth. But in the seventh, Bonn cut San Marino’s lead in half when Wilson Lee singled home Michale Miceli. Eventually, in the bottom of the eighth inning, Bonn managed to tie the game. With the bases loaded, Danny Lankhorst hit a single to center field that drove in Daniel Lamb-Hunt and Vincent Ahrens. Despite putting a runner in scoring position in the top of the ninth, San Marino did not score. But also Bonn didn’t cash in as they failed to score with a runner on third. So with the score tied at four after nine innings, we were treated to free baseball.
With runners placed on first and second, Leo Ferrini bunted them over with a bunt that was far from perfect. As the first baseman opted to throw to third base, Ferrini was safe as well. A wild pitch by Paul Schmitz allowed Ortwin Hose Pieternella Vargas to score the go-ahead run. San Marino scored another run on a wild pitch. Somehow, the Bonn lineup didn’t bunt their runners over, but with the bases loaded and one out, the team did not cash in and fell to San Marino in extra innings.
Paul Schmitz took the loss. He gave up two runs (one earned) on one walk and struck out six in three innings. Fernando Baez earned the win. In three innings, he walked four and struck out six.
Ortwin Hose Pieternella Vargas was the best hitter for San Marino with two triples out of three at-bats.
Tomorrow morning, the postponed game between T&A San Marino and Curaçao Neptunus will be continued. Neptunus desperately needs a win to advance to the semis.
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