Devils take three from Otters; move into tie for top spot with Tsunamis

In a critical series for two contending teams, Dave Larson’s Taz Devils took three of four, on Saturday, July 11, to finish the first half at 26-14 to move into a tie for first place.  Jonathan Stilwell’s Otters, meanwhile, slipped to two games out of first, with one series remaining, in Longwood, at Walt Taylor’s Whatevers.

Game 1  Taz Devils 9, Otters 8 (10 innings)

The home squad gave Charlie Morton a 3-0 lead going into the 4th but a Ronald Acuna homer cut the lead to one run. The Devils went up 4-2 on a Bret Gardner single in the bottom of the same inning. The Otters rallied and rallied, plating six runs in the 6th, 7th, and 8th innings. A Ketel Marte three run homer and a two run blast from Christian Yelich highlighted the uprising. With a comfortable lead going into the bottom of the 9th, the Devils batted around, tying the game. A bases loaded double from Zander Bogaerts was followed with an rbi single from Jeff McNeil. After a three up, three down top of the 10th, with one out, Max “not an elf” Kepler hit a game winning homer. 

Otters 8-13-1   L- Nick Wittgren  HR- Ketel Marte, Christian Yelich, Ronald Acuña.

Devils  9-12-1  W- Steve Cishek (1-1)  HR- Mookie Betts (7), Cody Bellinger (9), Maz Kepler (6).

Game 2  Taz Devils 3, Otters 2

The visitors got single runs in each of the first two innings on rbi from Mike Trout and Pat Corbin. The Tazzies tied the game with two runs in the 4th on solo homers from Andrew Benentendi and James McCann. The next four and half innings were scoreless when Cody Bellinger,, with two outs, hit a game winning homer in the bottom of the 9th.

Otters 2-8-0  L- Tyler Duffey. 

Devils  3-8-2  W- Josh Hader (3-0)  HR- Andrew Benentendi (2), James McCann (1), Cody Bellinger (10).

Game 3  Taz Devils 4, Otters 1 

Jack “Hammer” Flaherty got support with single runs plated in the3rd, 5th, 6th, and 7th. Flaherty allowed just one hit and three walks, keeping the Otters from reaching home. The Otters did push a run across in the 9th on a Fred E. Freeman double. The Devils got rbi from Bogaerts, Devers, Brantley, and a pinch hit homer from Carlos Santana.  

Otters  1-2-0  L- Lance Lynn.

Devils  4-9-0  W- Jack Flaherty (4-2)  SV- Trevor May (1)  HR- Carlos Santana (3).

Game 4  Otters 8  Taz Devils 3

The visiting Otters built up a three-run lead through the top of the seventh inning. Freddie Freeman, Ketel Marte, and Yasmani Grandal had solo dingers for the runs. Down by three in the bottom of the 8th, Devils LF Brett Gardner hit a two-run homer to cut the lead to one run. After a walk to Mookie Betts, Michael Brantley doubled him home to tie the game. The furry fiends frustrations fueled a five-run rally in the top of the 9th. Yoan Moncada drove in a run to start the inning and Trout’s three run homer capped the rally. The Devils went down meekly in the bottom of the ninth. Kirby Yates got the win in relief.

Otters  8-13-2  W- Yates  HR- Trout, Marte, Grandal, Freeman

Devils 3-3-1      L- Hader (3-1)  HR- Gardner (5)

Whats clinch fourth place with sweep of Horde

With the first half winding down for both teams, Walt Taylor’s Whatevers clinched fourth place in the first half with a sweep over the expansion Horde. In a contentious series, the Whats won two games by only a single run as the pesky Horde kept things close throughout the entire series.

What 2b Ozzie Albies hit a pair of homers in Game Two while Whatever reliever Brandon Workman picked up his first two wins of the season, winning Games One and Four. The Horde’s Eugenio Suarez launched three homers in the series, including a pair in the opener.

The sweep gave the Whats a 16-20 with a home series with the contending Otters left on the schedule while the Horde  (9-27), who have now lost six in a row, have a chance to make a huge impact on the first half pennant chase, has a series at the Tsunamis to wrap up the first half

Game 1  Whatevers 8, Horde 7

Each team scored three runs in the second. For the Horde, a three-run homer by Gary Sanchez got them the brief lead but a two run shot by Yordan Alvarez and a passed ball by Sanchez tied it back up. The Horde went back to back to back in the fourth off Jose Berrios with homers by Jorge Soler, Corey Seager, and a second shot by Sanchez to make it 6-3. A solo blast by Gleybar Torres made it 7-3 after five. After Horde starter Mike Soroka was lifted in the seventh, the Whats would take advantage of the bullpen. Gio Urshela doubles, George Springer follows with a rbi double then Francisco Lindor takes it deep to make it 7-6. In the eighth, Travis d’Arnaud grabs the lead for the Whats with a two -run shot off Ryne Harper to make a winner of Brandon Workman. The Whats bullpen finally did their job holding the Horde to a single and a walk in the last four innings.

Horde   7-10-0   L-Harper HR Eugenio Sanchez 2, Jorge Soler, Corey Seager, GleyberTorres.

Whats  8-13-0   W-Brandon Workman 1-4. Sv-Hand 1. HR Franciso Lindor 5, Yordan Alvarez 5, Travis d’Arnaud 2.

Game 2  Whatevers 4, Horde 2

Walker Buehler out duals the Horde’s Eddie Rodriguez in the 4-2 win. Alex Verdugo led off the game with a triple and scores on Trey Mancini single but the Whats counter with two on a rbi double by Alex Bregman and a SF by Alvarez. A solo homer by Ozzie Albies in the third and rbi double by Charlie Blackmon in the fifth make it 4-1. Pete Alonso goes deep to chase Buehler in the sixth. The What bullpen showed up for the second time getting the last nine outs without a hit.

Horde   2-6-1  L-Eddie Rodriguez. HR Pete Alonso.

Whats  4-7-1  W-Walker Buehler 3-2. Sv-Hand 2. HR Ozzie Albies 2.

Game 3  Whatevers 5, Horde 2

Justin Verlander tossed seven scoreless before tiring as the Whatever’s cruised to a 5-2 win. Home runs by Lindor and Alvarez and a two-run single by Verlander provided the scoring for the Whats. A two run triple by Mancini in the eighth broke up the shutout. Hansel Robles threw a perfect ninth for the save.

Horde   2-3-2   L-Eddie Rodriguez.

Whats  5-8-0   W-Justin Verlander 1-3. Sv-Hansel Robles 2. HR Francisco Lindor 6, Yordan Alvarez 6.

Game 4  Whatevers 4, Horde 3 (10 innings)

Charlie Blackmon drives in the game winner in the tenth when the Horde defense missed the tag at home on the grounder to give the Whats a 4-3 win and a sweep. Bregman single drove in one in the fourth and DP brought in a second run. Alvarez sent one deep in the sixth but not deep enough to plate the third run. Meanwhile Zack Greinke tosses 8+ shutout innings before being lifted. The What bullpen had been stellar to this point in the series, but Cam Bedrosian allowed a walk, single, and three-run homer to Eugenio Suarez to tie the and send it to extra innings. Albies singled and stole second off Alex Colome, David Fletcher moved him up on the sac bunt, and Blackmon hit a ground ball, but the throw to the plate was late for the game winner.

Horde   3-5-2   L-Alex-Colome HR Eugenio Suarez.

Whats  4-5-2   W-Brandon Workman 2-4.

OAPBA Standings, First Half July 11

TeamWLPctGB
Tsunamis24120.667
Otters26140.650
Taz Devils22140.6112.0
Whatevers16200.4448.0
Beefers15250.37511.0
Horde9270.28115.0

Only two series remain in the first half, both critical to Craig Dolan’s Asian Tsunamis, tied for the league lead with Dave Larson’s Taz Devils, and for Jonathan Stilwell’s

If the Asians take three from the Horde, they win the first half. If they split, the Devils take the first half, on the basis of a better head-to-head record (Devils won five of eight against the Tsunamis).

If the Otters sweep the Whats and the Asians split, the Otters tie the Devils and a playoff will be required to decide the first half champion.

Tsunamis take big step toward title; win three from Whatevers

Craig Dolan’s Asian Tsunamis rolled in to Whoville Sunday, July 5, and took three of four from Walt Taylor’s slumping Whatevers. After splitting the first two games, the Tsunami pitching staff took control, with a combined one-hitter in the third game and a three-hit win in the finale. The Tsunamis have now won nine of their last 12 games while the Whats are headed in the opposite direction, with eight losses in their last 10 games. 

Game 1 Whatevers 6, Tsunamis 4

The Whatevers posted four runs in the first, keyed by a three run homer by Alex Bregman, lifting the Whats to a 6-3 win. Walker Buehler went 6+ innings for the Whats, striking out 12 and hitting his second home run of the 2020 season.in the fourth. to help his cause. Mitch Garver went deep for the Asians.

Tsu       3-4-1      L-Marco Gonzales. HR Mitch Garver.

Whats 6-11-0   W- Walker Buehler. SV Hansel Robles. HR Alex Bregman, Walker Buehler.

Game 2 Tsunamis 4, Whatevers 3 (10 innings)

Nolan Arenado’s two-out double in the 10th inning drove in the go ahead-run to give the Tsunamis a 4-3 win. The Asians scored in the second on a Garver double. In the fifth, Bregman took Ryan Pressly deep with one on to get the lead for the Whats. In the eighth, Tsunami 3b Nolan Arenado launched one off Brad Hand with a runner on to re-take the lead for the Asians. Bregman tied it with two out in the ninth on a RBI single off Tsu reliever Ken Giles to send it to extra baseball. Dickerson reached in the tenth with a single and Juan Soto, pinch-running, stole second to set up Arenado for the winning hit.

Tsu        4-7-0     W-Evan Marshall, Sv-Zach Britton. HR Nolan Arenado.

Whats   3-10-0   L-Brandon Workman. HR Alex Bregman.

Game 3 Tsunamis 1, Whatevers 0

Tsunami righthander Anibal Sanchez and two relievers combined to shut out the Whats 1-0 on one hit. Luis Arraez drove in the only run with a single in the seventh and the only hit for the Whats was by George Springer. Ryan Pressly picked up the win with two scoreless innings and Ken Giles with two innings of his own for the save. 

Tsu        1-7-1   W-Ryan Pressly. SV Ken Giles.

What’s 0-1-0   L-Zach Greinke

Game 4 Tsunamis 11, Whatevers 3

The Asians cruised to a 11-3 victory paced by homers from Juan Soto, Nolan Arenado, and a grand slam by Trevor Story. Tsu starter Domingo German was the beneficiary going five innings for the Tsus while Lucas Giolito took the loss. Frankie Lindor would go deep for the Whats in the losing effort.

Tsu      11-12-1 W-Domingo German. HR Juan Soto, Nolan Arenado, Trevor Story (grand slam)

What’s  3-3-0 L-Lucas Giolito HR Francisco  Lindor