In the seventh round of the Australian BaseballLeague, the Melbourne Aces and the Canberra Cavalry walked away from the rest of the league as both teams won three out of four games. The only black mark for Melbourne was the 19-4 loss vs Brisbane.
The Melbourne Aces hosted the Brisbane Bandits. The Bandits salvaged the series by clubbing the Melbourne pitching in game three of the series. Melbourne started with a narrow escape on Thursday as it clinched a 4-3 walk-off victory when Mike Walker singled to right field on a line drive and drove in the walk -off run James Beresford.
Mark Hamburger was not as dominant as he can be, as he gave up three runs on ten hits, but he still managed to strike out thirteen in eight innings.
Melbourne won the second game as well, 5-3, despite the three errors that the team committed. Jeremy Guthrie lasted six innings in which he gave up one run on four hits, walked one and struck out six.
Saturday’s game was one soon to forget for the Aces as they fell 19-4 to the Bandits. Not only were they outscored but also outhit (21-6). Best hitter for the Bandits was Connor McDonald with five hits out of six at bats. He drove in two runs, scored twice and hit a double.
The Aces had a rather easy victory on Sunday as they beat the Bandits 5-1. Former Dutch hoofdklasse pitcher Justin Erasmus lasted just 4.1 innings on the mound for Brisbane and suffered his first loss of the season as he gave up two runs (one earned) on five hits. Another former Dutch hoofdklasse pitcher, Dushan Ruzic, earned the win after pitching three innings in relief. He gave up only two hits and a walk and kept the Bandits from scoring.
German Donald Lutz did not have a great weekend as he only went 3 for 15 with three RBI.
The Adelaide Bite salvaged the series by winning the opening game 8-3 against the Canberra Cavalry. Even though both teams collected nine hits, Adelaide scored more runs thanks to the four errors that the Cavalry committed.
The first game of Saturday’s doubleheader wasn’t a good one for the Dutchies on the Bite’s squad. Bas Nooij, who finally got some playing time again, went 0 for 3. Loek van Mil took the loss after giving up two runs (one unearned) in the sixth inning. Eventually, the Bite lost 5-2.
In the second game of the doubleheader, Canberra stayed at the right side of the score again. Louis Cohen gave up the three runs (on four hits) that the Bite would score and earned the win after six frames in which he walked three and struck out three as well.
On Sunday, the Bite was no match for the Cavalry as they were beaten 6-1. Tyler Herr earned the win after pitching two frames in relief in which he gave up only one hit but walked four. Herr also struck out one hitter.
This season seems to be one like many for the Sydney BlueSox. After a good start, the team got into a free fall. This week they battled for the last spot in the standings with the Perth Heat.
On Thursday, Sydney clinched a rather easy victory as it beat Perth 3-0, despite committing three errors and collecting as many hits (six) as the Heat did.
Trevor Foss lasted six innings for the win in which he gave up five hits, walked one and fanned seven. Todd van Steensel clinched his first save of the season. Sven Schuller from Germany earned his first hold as he pitched one inning in which he gave up a hit and struck out one.
On Friday, the BlueSox jumped on Heat pitcher Tom Bailey as they scored seven runs on eight hits. Only two of those seven runs were earned. But Bailey recovered rather well and still lasted 5.1 innings. Former Dutch hoofdklasse pitcher, Craig Anderson, lasted five innings and gave up four runs on five hits. But despite the early seven-run lead in the second inning, the BlueSox could not cling on to the lead. Next to Anderson giving up four runs, Yuki Katayama gave up two. Eventually, Todd van Steensel blew the save and took the loss as he gave up two runs to give the Heat an 8-7 lead. Ben Grice walked away with the victory after 3.2 innings of work in which he did not allow a hit and struck out one.
The BlueSox slipped into a tie for last place as they lost Sunday’s game as well. In a high scoring game in which the score went back and forth. As Sydney scored two in the ninth to tie the game at six at and Perth did not score in that inning, a tie-break was necessary. After a scoreless tenth inning, Sydney did not score in the eleventh but Perth pushed for the walk-off win. With runners placed on first and second, Derek Peterson laid down a sac bunt that was fielded cleanly by third baseman Tucker Neuhaus. But a missed catch by fist baseman Trent D’Antonio allowed all runners to advance and Peterson to get on base.
The BlueSox moved left fielder Joshua Strong into the infield to have an extra infielder. Luke Hughes hit a dribbler to third baseman Tucker Neuhaus, who committed a throwing error as he threw towards home plate and allowed Josh Diggins to score the walk-off run and hand Perth the 7-6 victory.
In the standings, Melbourne did not walk away from Canberra as both won three. The Aces have a 21-7 record and a five-game lead over the Cavalry (26-12). The Adelaide Bite is in third place but with a losing record (13-15) as they trail the Cavalry by three games.
The Brisbane Bandits (12-16) are in fourth place, one game behind the Bite.
The Sydney BlueSox slipped into a tie for last place with the Perth Heat after three losses vs Perth. Both teams now have an 11-17 record.