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Updated: June 15, 2022
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(Story by Marco Stoovelaar)

Starting Pitchers coming series
Nederlands

AMSTERDAM - Coming Thursday-evening (June 16), the second half of the regular season opens with four 3-game series. The first half of the season ended with a make-up game on Tuesday, June 7.

In the meantime, the season was briefly interrupted, as reigning champion L&D Amsterdam Pirates and Curašao Neptunus participated in the European Champions Cup-tournament in Bonn (Germany). There, Amsterdam Pirates reached the Final and faced defending Cup-champion ParmaClima Parma Angels (Italy), whom they defeated 12-4 in the preliminary round. In the Final, Pirates took a 5-3 lead, thanks to two homeruns by Denzel Richardson. But with a 5-4 lead for Pirates, Parma was able to come back, scored twice in the eighth inning and won 7-6. In Sicnarf Loopstok, Pirates had the Best Hitter of the tournament with a .647 batting average.

Neptunus was eliminated for the Play-Offs after losing 8-5 to Bonn Capitals (Germany). On the first day of the event, the game of Neptunus against San Marino (San Marino) was halted with a 5-5 score after eight innings due to rain. Instead of finishing the game the next day, it was decided to play the remainder only when needed. However, it was clearly from the beginning that this game would be important for the final ranking. And so, the remainder was now played on the first day of the final round. Both teams knew what was needed to advance to the Play-Offs. Neptunus had to win with a three-run difference, while San Marino had to minimize the run-difference in case of a loss. What followed was a weird, tactical finish, with sitiuations that were unworthy to both teams, and led to a lot of criticism. Neptunus took a 6-5 lead in the ninth, which was not enough. With two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Neptunus-reliever Kevin Kelly issued an intentional walk to a Parma-batter. Next, he commited a balk three times on purpose, which brought in the run and led to extra innings. After a scorless tenth inning, Neptunus scored twice in the eleventh inning. Again, that was not enough and so, the Rotterdam-team tried to do the same trick in order to get an additional inning trying to bring the run-difference to three. With two outs and runners on first and third base, an intentional balk led to a run and made it an 8-7 score. Next, Kelly again committed a balk, but this time, San Marino ended this trick. The runner first moved to third base on the balk, then continued walking towards the dug-out. With that, he left the baseline and was called out. That ended the game and Neptunus was elimited. In the Relegation Pool, Neptunus then lost 12-6 to Draci Brno (Czech Republic). In the next game, last Sunday, Neptunus crawled through the eye of the needle and avoided relegation by winning 10-8 against Heidenheim Heidek÷pfe (Germany). Neptunus trailed early 4-0, then still faced a 4-2 deficit after six innings. The team then scored four runs in the seventh, but Heidenheim came alongside in the ninth to force extra innings. In the top of the tenth, Stijn van der Meer hit a grand slam homerun that put Neptunus ahead 10-6. Heidenheim scored two runs of its own, but this time, Neptunus hold onto the lead. During the tournament, Jiandido Tromp (hamstring), Sheadion Jamanika (ankle) and Roger Bernadina (knee) all sustained injuries. It was reported that Jamanika will not be able to play in the upcoming series, while the status of the other two is not clear yet.

In the second half, the top-four from the first half will play 18 more games (six games against each other) in the Top-4 Pool. The bottom-five teams will continue in the Bottom-5 Pool, playing twelve games (three games against each other). The teams will begin the second half with the total of points gained from the head-to-head results in the first half against the teams they face in the second half pools.

In the final round of the first half (June 2-4), Neptunus swept HCAW, which had been in first place for most of the season. With the three wins, Neptunus finished in first place, followed by HCAW and Pirates, while Twins Oosterhout secured fourth place in the second-to-last game. But that will not be the ranking in the second half. Pirates and Neptunus will start with the same total of points (12). As Pirates had won the 3-game series against Neptunus (2-1) in the first half, it will be the Amsterdam-team that opens in first place, followed by Neptunus and HCAW.

The same goes for the Bottom-5 Pool. By winning the make-up game on June 7 against Twins, DSS/Kinheim finished in fifth place in the first half, followed by RCH Memorie Sieraden. But in the second half, DSS/Kinheim and RCH begin with the same total of points (16). And in this case, the ranking is also decided by the head-to-head results of the first half. RCH won the 3-game series against DSS/Kinheim (2-1) and thus will open in first place.

However, the schedule of the second half is not determined on either the ranking of the first half or the second half. In the initially published scheduled, the Top-4 Pool would open with a series between Team A and Team D, which can be translated into Team 1 and Team 4. In that case, when looking to the first half, Neptunus would open against Twins. Or when the opening standings in the second half would have been used, Pirates against Twins. However, the second half begins with a 3-game series between Pirates and Neptunus, while Twins meets HCAW. As Pirates and Neptunus have just returned from the weeklong tournament in Germany, the starting pitchers for the coming days might not be clear yet. Pirates has not yet decided on its rotation.

In the Bottom-5 Pool, Team E would be off. When E is translated to five, either DSS/Kinheim (fifth place first half) or RCH would have been off. But both teams will play in the upcoming round and Hoofddorp Pioniers instead is the team that has no games scheduled. RCH opens against Quick Amersfoort. DSS/Kinheim, which added Japanese infielder Daisuke Fukuda to its roster for the second half, begins against Silicon Storks.

As mentioned earlier, the games that are played in the second half all are part of what is the regular season. That means that all individual awards that are handed out to the best players of the season will be based on the statistics and accomplishments in the first and second half combined.

The ranking in the second half will determine the pairings of the three best-of-three Wild Card Play-Offs that will follow.

The two best teams of the Top-4 Pool will face each other in the best-of-three Wild Card Top Series (August 11-14) and also secure a spot in the two best-of-five Play-Offs (August 18-28) that will decide which two teams will advance to the Holland Series (first game September 15). The teams that finish in third and fourth place in the Top-4 Pool will play in one of the two best-of-three Wild Card Bottom Series (August 11-14). The two best teams from the Bottom-5 Pool will first play a best-of-three Wild Card Qualifier (August 4 -7) to decide whom they will meet in the Wild Card Bottom Series. The winners of the Wild Card Bottom Series then also advance to the Play-Offs, the losing teams will play a best-of-five Play-Off (August 18-28) for fifth and sixth place.

Beneath are the announced starters for the games in the upcoming series. As always, these assignments can change on game-days.

(June 15)

Rosters
Live play-by-play & live-streams

TOP-4 POOL
RosterL&D AMSTERDAM PIRATES (0-0) (17-6-1)vs. CURAăAO NEPTUNUS (0-0) (21-3)RosterGame-info
#Starting Pitchers Pirates G #Starting Pitchers Neptunus Date, Time & Site
to be decided 1 15RHP Juan Carlos Sulbaran (7-0) Th. June 16, 7:30 PM, Amsterdam (1)
to be decided 2 27RHP Kaj Timmermans (4-1) Sa. June 18, 2:00 PM, Rotterdam (2)
to be decided 3 to be decided Su. June 19, 2:00 PM, Amsterdam (1)
(1) - Loek Loevendie Ballpark, Sportpark 'Ookmeer', Amsterdam; (2) - Neptunus Familiestadion, Sportpark Abraham van Stolkweg, Rotterdam

TOP-4 POOL
RosterTWINS OOSTERHOUT (0-0) (12-11-1)vs. HCAW (0-0) (20-4)RosterGame-info
#Starting Pitchers Twins G #Starting Pitchers HCAW Date, Time & Site
11RHP Koen Postelmans (3-4) 1 45LHP Jim Ploeger (4-1) Th. June 16, 7:30 PM, Oosterhout (3)
10LHP Ryan Huntington (4-3) 2 39RHP Lars Huijer (4-0) Sa. June 18, 2:00 PM, Bussum (4)
6RHP Simon Gross (3-2) 3 7RHP Dennis Burgersdijk (6-0) Su. June 19, 3:00 PM, Oosterhout (3)
(3) - Sportpark 'De Slotbosse Toren', Oosterhout; (4) - Rob Hoffmann Vallei, Sportpark Zanderijweg, Bussum

BOTTOM-5 POOL
RosterQUICK AMERSFOORT (0-0) (6-17-1)vs. RCH MEMORIE SIERADEN (0-0) (10-14)RosterGame-info
#Starting Pitchers Quick G #Starting Pitchers RCH-Pingu´ns Date, Time & Site
52LHP Jhan Rifaela (1-0) 1 41RHP Jeremy Young (4-2) Th. June 16, 7:30 PM, Amersfoort (5)
19RHP Wally Vrolijk (1-2) 2 to be decided Sa. June 18, 2:00 PM, Heemstede (6)
5RHP Stijn Bruins Slot (1-6) 3 to be decided Su. June 19, 2:00 PM, Amersfoort (5)
(5) - XL Lease Park 'Dorrestein'Amersfoort; (6) - Heemsteedse Sportparken, Heemstede

BOTTOM-5 POOL
RosterSILICON STORKS (0-0) (2-22)vs. DSS/KINHEIM (0-0) (11-13)RosterGame-info
#Starting Pitchers Storks G #Starting Pitchers DSS/Kinheim Date, Time & Site
16RHP Darryl Jamoena (0-7) 1 27RHP Nick Boxelaar (3-3) Th. June 16, 7:30 PM, Rotterdam (7)(*)
25RHP Twan Naessens (0-4) 2 to be decided Sa. June 18, 2:00 PM, Haarlem (8)
31RHP Mike van den Berg (1-6) 3 to be decided Su. June 19, 1:30 PM, The Hague (9)
(7) - Neptunus Familiestadion, Sportpark Abraham van Stolkweg, Rotterdam (site Neptunus)
(8) - Pim Mulier Stadion, Pim Mulier Sportpark, Haarlem; (9) - Sportpark 'Kijkduin', The Hague
(*) - Thursday's home-game of Storks will be played at the site of Neptunus, as there is no light-installation at its home-site in The Hague




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