If I were to say whether the results below were surprising or not, that would be a spoiler. Possibly allowable for Game 1, definitely not for Game 2. So:
(3) Digital Divide 4
(2) Scrabble Babble 9
Babble lead series 2-0
Once again, the Babble came out swinging; once again, those swings led them to a playoff win.
Scrabble led 6-0 after three innings and continued to knock around Digital pitchers, completing a 9-4 win that put the Babble one win away from the Minneapolis Mid-Round.
In the second inning, Scrabble used small ball to put their first three runs on the board, scoring one run on a Luis Quinones groundout and two on a Joe Quinn single. The third inning saw the big ball take hold, Max Kepler socking a solo dinger to open the scoring in that frame.
Although the Divide narrowed the deficit to 6-4 across the sixth and seventh innings, their offensive output including a Logan Morrison home run, the Babble saw their four-bagger output increase the lead to the final score of the game. Norm Zauchin made the score 7-4 with a seventh-inning home run, and Quinn concluded the scoring with a two-run shot in the eighth.
(4) Bristol Barstools 0
(1) Wonder Years 3
Years lead series 2-0
On simulated June 11, Kevin Tapani pitched a perfect game against the Bristol Barstools.
On simulated October 7, he nearly repeated the feat.
One walk and one hit batsman were all that kept Tapani from perfection as the 1991 hurler twirled a 3-0 no-hitter, shutting out the Barstools once again.
A sac fly from Zoilo Versalles and a two-run shot from Rich Reese were all Tapani needed as he struck out 13 Barstools en route to simulated baseball immortality.
For the Barstools, Dick Stigman pitched a complete eight innings, allowing only seven hits, but was outduelled by Tapani throughout the game.
Tapani capped off his outing with his 11th, 12th, and 13th strikeouts of the game, whiffing John Moses, Jimmy Ryan, and Robbie Grossman to send the crowd and team into raucous celebration.
(3) Alliterative Appellations 3
(2) Special Ks 6
Ks lead series 2-0
The middle innings proved key for the Ks this time.
Special scored all six of their runs in the central three innings, topping Alliterative 6-3 and moving one step closer to advancing.
On the mound, Bert Blyleven pitched up to his team’s moniker, striking out 15 batters over seven innings.
The one blemish on Blyleven’s game came in the top of the second, when Jacque Jones singled, stole second, and scored on Greg Gagne’s single. Besides that, Blyleven put zeroes on the scoreboard throughout.
Special tied the score in the fourth when Harmon Killebrew singled in Brian Dozier, then took the lead in the fifth, Byron Buxton tripling home George Mitterwald and scoring on Dozier’s single.
In the sixth, they blew the game open, a walk and sacrifice fly sandwiching four consecutive singles to bring in three runs.
The Appellations brought two runs across in the top of the eighth, but came no closer.
(4) Early Birds 0
(1) Inside Baseballers 6
Baseballers lead series 2-0
When a team pitches a shutout, the focus is almost always on the starting pitcher. That was indeed the case for the Baseballers.
Frank Viola pitched 7.2 innings of scoreless 12-strikeout baseball and Inside took a 2-0 series lead with a 6-0 win.
Though Viola received minimal run support while himself on the mound, the Baseballers pushed three runs across to back him up. Byron Buxton opened the scoring in the bottom of the first with a solo home run, while in the sixth inning, Jimmie Hall doubled, Zoilo Versalles tripled him home, and Kent Hrbek singled him home.
After Viola left the game and Taylor Rogers took over in relief, Rich Rollins put the cap on the victory with a three-run home run.
Rogers pitched the final 1.1 innings, receiving credit for the save.