Over the winter, we aim to meet your baseball fix here at Beyond the Box Score. To do so, we’ll be covering the Australian Baseball League for each week that the competition is running. We also would like to remind you that many of the games are streamed and recorded on the league’s YouTube channel.
Brisbane wins the series over Sydney (2-1)
Game 1: SYD 4 - 9 BRS
Game 2: SYD 10 - 9 BRS
Game 3: SYD 6 - 7 BRS
Game 4: PPD
The Bandits hosted the Blue Sox for a four-game set that would be cut short by a spat of rain. That said, there’s still more than a few performances worth noting in this series. Noted Bandits hit machine Aaron Whitefield continued to set the table effectively, going 5-for-12 with three runs scored. Midseason pickup David Rodriguez continues to light the world on fire. Rodriguez went 6-for-12 with four RBI, a home run, and four runs scored. His performance in Game 2 certainly kept the Bandits in the game with three runs, the aforementioned home run, and three RBIs. Finally, David Sutherland came to the plate just eight times in this series. In those eight plate appearances, though, he failed to reach base only once. Adding to his impressive performance, he also knocked in two RBIs and crossed the place twice.
Tucker Neuhaus was the catalyst for the Blue Sox in their Game 2 win. Neuhaus had himself a four-hit day with a run scored and seven RBIs. After driving in seven of their ten runs in Game 2, he was a bright spot in the Game 3 loss as he added another two hits and two more runs scored. Jacob Younis also had himself a series. In Game 2, he also added two hits, an RBI, and a walk. His four singles in Game 3 brought in a run and put him in place to score one of his own.
Melbourne wins their series over Canberra (3-1)
Game 1: MEL 11 - 1 CAN
Game 2: MEL 12 - 6 CAN
Game 3: MEL 1 - 8 CAN
Game 4: MEL 6 - 5 CAN
Melbourne’s domination spread to Canberra this past week as they took three from the Cavs. Mark Hamburger led off the first game on the mound for the Aces. His usual excellence was present: He went the full nine, giving up only one run on five hits with eight strikeouts. He currently sits second in ERA behind now-departed teammate Keisuke Honda.
In that first game, Allan de San Miguel put on a show offensively. Going 5-for-5 with a home run, two runs scored, and six RBIs, de San Miguel was the catalyst for the Melbourne offense. Roman Collins certainly benefited as he crossed the plate four times that day. Over the series, Collins turned in a 6-for-14 performance with two walks, six RBIs, and seven runs scored.
Scott Kelly continues to be one of the best, if not the best, leadoff men in the league. This series certainly reflected that, as he went 8-for-18 with two runs scored, two RBIs, a steal, and a walk. He is currently the league leader in batting average and is second in OBP.
Sean Guinard turned in the oddest pitching performance of the series for the Cavs in Game 3. Guinard went 71⁄3 innings with only one run allowed and six strikeouts. However, he also walked seven batters and saw two more nab hits. Josh Almonte was the offensive star of this game, going 2-for-3 with a home run and five RBIs.
Adelaide wins their series over Perth (3-1)
Game 1: PER 1 - 5 ADE
Game 2: PER 3 - 4 ADE
Game 3: PER 5 - 3 ADE
Game 4: PER 1 - 2 ADE
Adelaide defended their home turf taking the series from the Heat. The Bite were certainly carried by their pitching this series. Impressive starting performances from Zach Cooper and Jack O’Loughlin kept the Bite offense within striking distance in each of their respective starts. Cooper toed the rubber in Game 1 surrendering only one run over six innings. In those six innings, he struck out seven and only allowed seven baserunners. O’Loughlin turned in arguably the best start of his rookie season. The 16-year-old went 52⁄3, fanned six, and gave up only one run and three hits. Another teen, Jordan McArdle, went off in that game as well. He smacked three hits, scored a run, and added an RBI.
The Heat have to continue to be encouraged by Joey Wong’s slow trudge upward. Wong recorded hits in each of the final three games of this series, including a multi-hit game in the third installment of the series. He raised his average by ten points up to .197 at the end of it. Ulrich Bojarski was a problem for the Adelaide pitching, as he reached base seven times and swiped two bags. Finally, Tim Kennelly continues to pester ABL pitching, going 6-for-15 with a walk, two doubles, three runs scored, a home run, and three RBIs.
Matchups for Next Week
Adelaide (16-16) @ Melbourne (24-8)
Perth (12-20) @ Brisbane (15-16)
Canberra (17-15) @ Sydney (12-19)
Anthony Rescan is a Contributing Writer at Beyond the Box Score. You can follow him on Twitter at @AnthonyRescan. Anthony also explained his time in the Australian Baseball League at Baseball Prospectus and on Effectively Wild.