|STANDINGS||SCHEDULE / RESULTS||POWER RANKINGS||FEATURED GAMES|
|STIX & CHIX||@||GUARANTEED EAVESTROUGHING|
|RECORD||10-1-0 (1st)||9-2-0 (2nd)|
|AWAY/HOME||5-0-0 (1st)||5-1-0 (1st)|
|RF/RA||150 (3rd) / 88 (3rd)||161 (1st) / 65 (1st)|
In the first of two games that could decide top spot in Division 1, the current occupants of first place, Stix & Chix, take on the 2-time defending divisional winners- Guaranteed Eavestroughing. Eavestroughing currently sits just 2 points out of top spot.
Stix will be looking to complete a regular season sweep of Guaranteed, that started back in Week 8 when S&C rallied from an early deficit to earn a 1-run extra-inning victory. Both teams were undefeated at the time.
Prior to their Week 8 clash, Big Red drew first blood in the Mid-Season tournament. The now back to back Mid-Season Classic winners bounced Stix in the semi-finals before going on to capture the title. They are 22-1 in tournament play dating back to the 2016 Championship Weekend.
Guaranteed have won each of the last four Division 1 Tournaments and will look to make their third consecutive successful Championship run at the end of August. With a win, Stix & Chix can move within striking distance of clinching the division title in their first year in the league. It would be the first time since 2015 that a team other than Guaranteed finished on top of Division 1.
|GUARANTEED EAVESTROUGHING||@||NEW WAVE HOME|
|RECORD||9-2-0 (2nd)||9-2-0 (3rd)|
|AWAY/HOME||4-1-0 (2nd)||5-1-0 (1st)|
|RF/RA||161 (1st) / 65 (1st)||153 (2nd) / 82 (2nd)|
Later in the afternoon, Guaranteed will return to the diamond for another must-win showdown against New Wave Homes. New Wave has consistently challenged Big Red, but has been unable to get the better of their rivals. NW has finished second in each of the last 4 Division 1 tournaments and in the standings in both 2016 and 2017.
New Wave currently sits tied with Eavestroughing with 18 points, but the Red squad holds control of the 2nd spot by virtue of the best run differential in the division. In Similar fashion to their early pairing, Guaranteed defeated New Wave in the June tournament, but it was the Black and Orange that picked up the victory the following week in their first regular season meeting.
Despite going 0-2 against Stix & Chix, New Wave defeated them in their round-robin game and a second win over Eavestroughing could position them as the favourite heading into Championship Weekend. They will need some help to finish on top of the standings for the first time in their team’s history, but a third straight top 2 finish is within reach.
Both clubs open Sunday with crucial games, including New Wave needing to show up against the upset ready Fan of the Sport. If successful, by game time this matchups will determine who holds first place heading into Week 12.
|BIG STICKS * LITTLE MITTS||@||REBELS|
|RECORD||7-5-0 (4th)||8-2-2 (1st)|
|AWAY/HOME||2-3-0 (3rd)||3-0-2 (5th)|
|RF/RA||137 (3rd) / 120 (5th)||169 (1st) / 109 (3rd)|
Currently boasting the longest active winning streak in Division 2, Big Sticks * Little Mitts is making a late season charge. Residing at the top of the D2 mountain, the Rebels enter Sunday having won back to back contests. Over their last 7 games (6-0-1), their only blemish is a Week 9 tie against second-placed Brokebat Mountain.
Sticks * Mitts started the season 2-4, losing by an average of 2.5 runs per game. While they were playing good ball, they were unable to grab traction in the standings. Conversely, the Rebels lost just 1 of their first 4 games heading into their early June meeting with Big Sticks. Turning the tides, Sticks pulled off a 13-12 win that appears to be the catalyst to their late-season surge.
The Rebels gained some revenge in the Mid-Season Classic with a round robin victory. In 2017, the Rebels held the edge in head to head competition. They finished the season 1 point ahead in the standings and swept the season series with two close wins. They then sent Big Sticks home in the Championship Quarter-Finals.
A constant in Division 2 since their debut in 2016, Big Sticks has seen their place in the standings rise with each season. A win here would move them into 3rd place and surpass their previous best point total. Rebels won their last Championship back in 2015 when they entered the D3 August tourney as the 4th seed on a 3-game winning streak. They should be very aware of the importance of win on Sunday and how it will establish them as the team to beat on the last weekend in August.
|RECORD||6-4-1 (3rd)||6-5-0 (5th)|
|AWAY/HOME||1-2-1 (7th)||4-2-0 (5th)|
|RF/RA||115 (5th) / 108 (3rd)||130 (4th) / 100 (1st)|
The second big Division 2 game to go down on Sunday will feature the Mid-Season Classic Finalist and 3rd placed R-Safety taking on the fifth-placed Century 21. Century 21 (12 pts) sit just a point back of R-Safety (13 pts) through 11 games with Big Sticks * Little Mitts (14 pts) sandwiched in between having played an extra game.
After not crossing paths in the Mid-Season Classic and rain squashing their Week 6 meeting, these two clubs finally took the field together in Week 10. R-Safety battled their way to a 10-8 win at home. Last season, these clubs split their regular season meetings with the home side holding serve in both games. That trend should give Century 21 the inside track to victory on Sunday.
Their 2017 interactions were not limited to the regular season as both teams met in pivotal tournament Quarter-Final action. Century 21 sent R-Safety packing in the opening round of the Mid-Season Classic, while R-Safety returned the favour 2 months later on Championship Weekend.
Century-21 had a strong start to the season that included a win over the Rebels, but after their 4-0 start they have gone just 2-5. R-Safety played just above .500 ball heading into the tournament and then dropped their first 2 games after the MSC before winning 3 in a row. Depending on how the six D2 games play out on Sunday, the winner of this game could still have top spot in sight when the dust settles.
|DOWNTOWN AUTO GLASS S.O.P||@||PRESSTRAN HOOLIGANS|
|RECORD||8-3-1 (2nd)||6-5-0 (4th)|
|AWAY/HOME||2-3-0 (4th)||4-2-0 (3rd)|
|RF/RA||141 (2nd) / 92 (2nd)||118 (4th) / 123 (6th)|
With first place salted away by the Mid-Season Classic winners, Beards N Babes, teams are now positioning themselves to try to thwart their attempt to capture the Triple Crown. Two of the biggest threats to their Crown run are #2 ranked Downtown Auto Glass S.O.P. and 4th placed Presstran Hooligans.
Back in Week 5, S.O.P. scored a lopsided triumph over the Hooligans by a score of 17-5. The loss capped off an up and down first half of the season for Presstran as they alternated wins and losses ending in a 3-3 record. Auto Glass dropped their season opener, but have gone 8-1-0 since in games not involving Beards N Babes.
The Mid-Season tournament saw S.O.P. start 3-0 in Group B. After opening the tournament with a 1-run loss to The O’s, the Hooligans upset Beards N Babes. They finished Saturday’s play with 2-1 record in a 3-way tie for top spot, but got bumped to second by virtue of the run differential. S.O.P. and Presstran met in the semi-finals, with S.O.P. winning 11-4. Unfortunately, both clubs came up short with S.O.P. falling in the finals to Beards N Babes and Presstran dropping the Consolation game to Aftermath.
Presstran Hooligans have a game in hand on both S.O.P. and Aftermath and a pair of wins this weekend could pull them within a point of S.O.P. for 2nd place heading into Week 12. S.O.P. fought Beards N Babes to a tie and Presstran beat them in their round robin meeting. If any team stands a chance of upending the top tier team, it could very well be the winner of this game.
|RECORD||7-4-0 (2nd)||10-1-1 (1st)|
|AWAY/HOME||2-2-0 (5th)||4-1-0 (1st)|
|RF/RA||134 (3rd) / 105 (2nd)||163 (1st) / 89 (1st)|
Winning during the regular season and winning on tournament weekend are not the same thing. The Leftovers might know that better than most team. One team that has done their fair share of tournament winning are their Week 11 opponents- the Roadies.
Currently, the Leftovers sit a dominant 7-points clear of the second-placed Roadies- clinching them top spot in Division 4. Back in Week 4, they ended the Roadies undefeated run with a 17-2 thrashing as they moved towards an impressive 5-1 first half record. What makes this season even more impressive is that Leftovers were a Division 5 team last year and in 2015 they finished 1-11-0 in the bottom division. Talk about a turnaround.
The Roadies struggled through 2017’s regular season, but showed they could play with anyone with their Mid-Season Classic Finals appearance. They captured both the 2014 Division 4 MSC and Championship Weekend titles and won Division 3’s June tourney in 2016. The Leftovers made their own successful MSC run last season, but hit a wall in the final tournament. They appeared poised to leave with some hardware this June, but were turned away in the finals by the Angry Raccoons.
The Leftovers are on fire, having gone 9-0-1 since their Week 1 loss. The Roadies tore out of the gates in the second half, winning 3 consecutive games, but dropped both outings of the Double Header in Week 10. Despite everything that the Leftovers have accomplished, both these clubs know it’s now how you start the season, but how you finish it that matters.
|I'D HIT THAT||@||LIMITLESS TATTOOS|
|RECORD||5-7-0 (5th)||7-4-0 (3rd)|
|AWAY/HOME||3-3-0 (5th)||4-1-0 (3rd)|
|RF/RA||144 (3rd) / 118 (5th)||106 (5th) / 89 (3rd)|
While, the top 2 spots in Division 5 appear to be spoken for, a new/old contender is making their presence known as the season draws to a close. The defending Division 5 Champions, Limitless Tattoos have won 4 consecutive games and have moved into 3rd place. I’d Hit That has put together some solid performances against the lower half of the division, but have been unable to come up with a big win over the top teams.
I’d Hit That is a collective 0-6 against the teams ranked above them. They have lost 4-times by 5 runs or less including a pair of 1 run defeats against Bat Attitudes and Railway City Brewery. Last season they played 10 games that finished within 3 runs, winning just once. They finished the year 1-5 in 1-run ball games. While their combined record sits below .500, a deeper dive shows that they are on the cusp of taking that next step.
In 2017, Limitless put together a solid 9-5 run and got hot at the right time, winning 5 of their last 7 ball games. That momentum carried them to a successful Championship Weekend, that included a Semi-Final win over I’d Hit That. It would appear that they are making another late season surge with 4 consecutive wins and a chance to extend their streak to 6 with a successful Sunday.
I’d Hit That will face the 3rd and 4th placed teams to round out their season. With a pair of wins and a little help, they could climb as high as the top 3. Mathematically, Limitless still could catch the Royals. Arguably, more important would be a win in Week 12 over The Royals- to help bolster their contendership. Either way, this game has the potential to turn the winner into a considerable threat heading into the August tournament.
|Week 5 Featured Game Division 5: Bat Attitudes @ The Royals|
|HEAD to HEAD||N/A|
|RECORD||4-1-0 (2nd)||4-0-0 (1st)|
|AWAY/HOME||3-0-0 (1st)||1-0-0 (1st)|
|RUNS FOR||51 (3rd)||65 (1st)|
|RUNS AGAINST||30 (3rd)||24 (1st)|
|GAME PREVIEW: |
With one side claiming noble lineage and the other sporting a downright narly disposition, this Sunday's marquee matchup in Division 5 is setting up to be a classic! The Royals have been completely untouchable this season and Bat Attitudes have matched them almost step for step. This Sunday they will meet for the first time ever in the first of 2 regular season battles with top spot on the line.
The Royals made their St. Thomas debut back in 2016. Planted in Division 3, the Blue Shirts ended the year with a 0-11-1 record and league worst -91 run differential. The club was bounced to Division 4 the following season and an 0-4 start had them in deep hole again. Shocking the the entire division, they went on to defeat Brokebat Mountain in the Mid-Season tournament finals. Based on our record books, they are only winless team to capture a tournament title. After finishing the season 4-4-2, they were bounced in the opening round of Championship Weekend. In 2018, they again found a new home and they are making it their own. Over their dominant 4-0 start they boast the best statistical offensive and defensive performances in the division. They have sat atop their group from the getgo, but Week 5 appears to offer the greatest threat to their throne.
Another tale of reclamation, Bat Attitudes started their inaugural season a dismal 0-5. In 2017 there appeared to be a 3 horse race for the Championship, but in the Mid-Season Classic, B.A. began to make their presence known. After finishing second in their group, they upended Limitless in the quarter-finals before falling to the eventual tournament champs. They won 6 of their final 9 regular season games and ended Championship Saturday as the top seed in their pool. Unfortunately, another semi-final exit ended their season early. Motivated by their continued improvement, in 2018 they came out firing. To date, the only blemish on their record was an unfortunate forfeit to Railway City Vapes. They have been close to title town, but in 2018 they stand to make their deepest run yet.
Top spot is on the line in Division 5 when these two fantastic clubs take the field on Sunday. More than that, the winner gets to fire the first shot in would could be a Mid-Season Classic tournament final preview. Will the Kings and Queens of D5 hold onto their crown? Or will Bat Attitudes give them a rude welcoming to second place? Best of luck to both squads!