Dutch Major League Baseball-exhibition season underway!
BUSSUM / ROTTERDAM / THE HAGUE / DORDRECHT / ARNHEM (Neth.) / BORGERHOUT (Belgium) -
Spring has finally arrived!
With extreme fine weather conditions, the Exhibition Season in the Dutch Major League went underway today with seven of the eight big league-teams seeing action.
A total of seven games was played today, which was the warmest March 8 in Dutch history, since weather conditions are registered since 1901.
The average temperature today was 16 degrees Celsius (almost 61 Fahrenheit).
At Bussum, L&D Amsterdam Pirates shutout Mr. Cocker HCAW 9-0.
The Amsterdam-squad collected 12 basehits, including three by Kenny Berkenbosch, who also scored twice and had an RBI.
Amsterdam opened the score in the first inning when Michael Duursma walked with one out and scored on a double by Berkenbosch.
That was to be the lone run for Pirates in the first five innings off of starter Tony Kreisel (2 1/3 inn.) and reliever Gijs van Els (2 2/3).
...HCAW's first line-up...
(© Photo: Adrie Berrevoets)
Amsterdam then added three runs in the sixth at bat on a sac-fly by Percy Isenia and a 2-run single by Rashid Gerard.
A 5-run rally then followed in the seventh inning off of Maickel Rietel, who had taken over the pitching during the previous inning.
In the seventh, with a runner on first base and one out, Björn Hato, Michael Duursma (2-run), Kenny Berkenbosch and Bas de Jong hit four consecutive singles.
With the bases loaded, a grounder by Percy Isenia and a 2-run single by Remco Draijer then lifted the lead to 9-0.
Rob Cordemans, Kevin Heijstek, Jurriaan Koks and newcomer Chris Mowday all pitched two innings for Amsterdam in this 8-inning game.
HCAW registered seven basehits, including two doubles by former Pirate Kevin Weijgertse.
Jim Froberg also doubled for the home team, which missed two of its pitchers due to injuries, while another one was still on winter holiday.
UVV played a 9-inning game vs. Borgerhout Squirrels, one of the Belgian big league-teams.
UVV won 12-9 in a game, which saw the debut of rookies Thijs Steenwijk, Joeri Wang and Sam van Dijk in the main squad.
Head Coach Ferenc Jongejan, who is entering his second season at the helm at UVV, made his comeback as an active player, as he was the first baseman this afternoon.
Dennis De Quint homered for UVV.
Vaessen Pioniers played a game against ESCA Arnhem Rhinos and won 15-4.
The game was played in Arnhem, where the Rhinos opened its new playing site at Sportpark Valkenhuizen.
The site was officially opened by Gerrie Elfrink, the alderman of sports for the Municipality of Arnhem.
Mampaey The Hawks played a double-header today.
Both games were limited to two hours.
In the first game, The Hawks met its Rookie League-team and won 11-7.
In the next game, which lasted six innings, The Hawks were shutout 1-0 by Zwijndrecht, which plays in the second highest league ('Overgangsklasse').
DOOR Neptunus, which won the Dutch championship-title last season, opened its exhibition season with a 9-7 win against Twins, which plays in the 'Overgangsklasse'.
Misja Harcksen (Neptunus) and Ben Van Nuffel (Twins) were the starting pitchers in this game.
The highlight was a basesloaded 3-run triple by Mick Molenaar for Twins, which is coached this season by former big leaguer Ralph Milliard, who also played in the Major League.
ADO Lakers, which secured a spot in this years big league by winning the Promotion/Relegation Play-Off season vs. Twins, won 7-2 vs. Orioles, which also plays in the 'Overgangsklasse'.
The lone club not playing today was Corendon Kinheim, which opens its exhibition season next Saturday.
The regular season opens on Thursday, April 17.