Grand Slam
Baseball & Softball Headlines
October 2006
Compiled and Copyright © 1997-2006 by Marco Stoovelaar

Index News Archive OCTOBER 2006

Dutch Baseball
Kinheim captures Dutch title. (October 1)
Steve Janssen begins new job in Belgium. (October 5)
Almere sets roster for 2007. (October 5)
Haarlem Baseball Week sets dates for 2008. (October 6)
KNBSB announces promotion/relegation details 2007. (October 6)
HCAW Baseball School starts second year. (October 6)
New Coach prepares with RCH-Pingu´ns. (October 6)
Pirates announces new additions. (October 24)

Dutch Softball Women
Terrasvogels, Sparks in Holland Series. (October 1)
Holland Series-opener rains out. (October 6)
Sparks Haarlem one-runs Terrasvogels in opener. (October 7)
Terrasvogels wins Game Two in tie-break. (October 8)
Sparks needs tie-break for new lead. (October 10)
Sparks again wins Dutch title!. (October 14)

International Baseball
Yankee-pitcher Cory Lidle dies in plane crash. (October 11)

World Series
St. Louis opent Series met winst. (October 21)
Detroit brings Series in balance. (October 22)
Cardinals take lead with shutout. (October 24)
Game Four canceled by rain. (October 25)
Cardinals take 3-1 lead. (October 26)
St. Louis Cardinals win World Series! (October 27)

Major League Play-Offs
A's, Cards, Yanks win Play-Off openers. (October 3)
Second win Oakland. (October 4)
Cards, Mets take 2-0 lead. (October 5)
Oakland sweeps Minnesota; Detroit takes lead. (October 6)
Tigers eliminate Yankees; San Diego stays alive; Mets clinch. (October 7)
Cardinals advance to NLCS. (October 8)
Detroit opens ALCS with win. (October 10)
Detroit also wins Game Two in ALCS. (October 11)
Mets shutout Cardinals in NLCS-opener. (October 12)
Detroit takes 3-0 lead; Cards win. (October 13)
Detroit in World Series. (October 14)
Mets bring Series in balance again. (October 15)
Cards come from behind for lead. (October 17)
Mets force seventh game. (October 18)
Cardinals in World Series! (October 19)

European Leagues
Greys win again in Belgium. (October 5)
Steve Janssen begins new job in Belgium. (October 5)
Grosseto and Rimini in Italian final. (October 5)
Rimini opens final with win. (October 6)
Grosseto evens Italian Series. (October 7)
Metrostars capture Austrian title. (October 8)
Championship final underway in Czech Republic. (October 8)
Rimini re-takes lead in Italy. (October 9)
Rimini one win away from title. (October 10)
Rimini captures Italian title. (October 11)

International Softball
Fifth game needed in Italian softball-final. (October 7)
Forlý grabs Italian softball-title. (October 8)

News Archive 2006
January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
September


Dutch Baseball
Kinheim captures Dutch title

...Winning Coach Ben Thijssen...
(Photo: Mario Klardie - www.sport-fotos.nl)
Nederlands
HAARLEM (Neth.) - Corendon Kinheim on Sunday won big against Konica Minolta Pioniers, 13-5, to win the Holland Series, 3-2, and capture the Dutch title for the first time in twelve years!

Kinheim did something they also did in 1994 when they last won the title, come back from a 2-1 deficit in the Series to win the last two games and claim the title. In the 19 Series played so far, Kinheim is the only club to have come back from a 2-1 deficit. For Kinheim, this was their third title. The first came in 1978.
This was the fourth Series in history that went the distance in a 5-game format.

The game lasted almost 5 1/2 hours, including a more than two hours rain-delay in the eighth inning, which almost made an end to the game because of the field conditions.
(October 1)

Game Recap, Photos, Line Score & Box Score
Final Standings & Scores
Complete Play-by-Play Game Five
Holland Series Website KNBSB

Coverage previous games


Steve Janssen starts new job in Belgium
Nederlands
ANTWERP (Belgium) / ROTTERDAM (Neth.) - Steve Janssen, who has been the 3B and Pitching Coach for DOOR Neptunus, on October 1 started his new job as Sports Technical Manager of the Belgian national teams.

...Steve Janssen new Belgian Head Coach...
(Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
Janssen, who is from Belgium, was named in this function on September 25 to succeed John Baeyens. By accepting this new position, Janssen will return to Belgium after serving as a coach for eight years in the Netherlands.
With the naming of Janssen, the Belgian Federation wants to continue to professionalize more around the national squads in other to improve its results in European competitions, such as the European Championships. While not confirmed, it appears doubtful that Janssen will remain a member of the Neptunus coaching staff, because of his new and busy role in Belgium.

In his new job, Steve Janssen will be the Head Coach of the Belgian National Baseball Team, but also will be the manager and coordinator for all other Belgian national baseball squads, such as youth teams, as well a the Flanders All Star Team from the Flemish Baseball League. Besides that, Janssen will serve as instructor for coach clinics and other initiatives.

Steve Janssen, who himself played for the Belgian national team, has been active in the Netherlands for the last eight years.
From 2000-2002, he was the Head Coach of Tridents, the First Division team of Neptunus. With the Tridents, he won the First Division-title (and Dutch title) in 2001 and 2002.
He then served as the Pitching Coach of the Dutch National Team from 2002-2005, including the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens (Greece) and winning the European title in 2003 and 2005.
This season, Janssen made his debut as a coach in the Dutch big league when he was a member of the coaching staff of DOOR Neptunus.
Before coming to the Netherlands, Steve Janssen was the Head Coach of Brasschaat Braves in the Belgian big league from 1997-1999.
(October 5)


Almere sets roster for 2007
Nederlands
ALMERE (Neth.) - Instant Holland Almere '90 is the first big league team to announce that they have set their roster for the new season. In a press release on Thursday, the club officially announced its team for 2007.


...Cliff Foster...
(Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
Almere '90 added five new players to its roster, including righthanded pitchers Cliff Foster and Patrick de Lange. The two both started the just finished 2006 season with Mr. Cocker HCAW.
Patrick de Lange left HCAW early June after internal problems that followed after a change in the coaching staff. The former national team-pitcher threw in only seven games and was 4-2. In 42 1/3 inning, De Lange had 21 strikeouts.
Besides pitching Cliff Foster also was the Pitching Coach with HCAW, but asked the be relieved of his duties on May 27, which led to the changes in the coaching staff. Foster remained on as one of the pitchers, later also handled some coaching duties again, but was released exactly one months later, on June 27, for disappointing results. This season, Foster appeared in 13 games, including five as a starter, and threw in 30 innings. The righthander had an 1-6 record and also had two saves. He struckout 27 batters, but also walked 38. Last season, in his first year in the Dutch big league and with HCAW, Foster threw in 25 games and ended the season with a 5-1 record and nine saves.


...Derick Francisca...
(Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
The other three newcomers are listed as Utility Players: Derick Francisca, Rodney Michel and rookie Emeron Lourens.
Derick Francisca this year made his big league-debut playing for Amsterdam Pirates, where he was the team's lead-off hitter and led the team in batting average with a .337 average. He had 55 basehits, including two homeruns. Francisca had 14 RBI's and scored the most runs for Pirates with 20.
Rodney Michel also is coming over from Mr. Cocker HCAW where he played in both the infield and outfield. Because of a seasons-starting suspension and later injuries, Michel played in only 26 games, but batted .318 and had 12 RBI's.
Emeron Lourens is coming from Curašao and is the nephew of Head Coach Ritchie Daal. Lourens is a very talented player, who was offered a professional contract, but instead opted to study in the Netherlands before starting a professional career.

Not returning in an Almere-uniform are RHP Martin Kuipers, OF Shaldimar Daantji, IF Sidney Ensermo, C/OF Jason Halman, RHP RenÚ Rijst and OF Ferd van Stekelenburg.
Rijst has retired after 25 seasons and 700 games on the highest level and became the team's Pitching Coach. Kuipers will pitch for RCH-Pingu´ns in 2007, while Van Stekelenburg will play for Amsterdam Pirates. It is not known yet where Daantji, Ensermo and Halman will play next season.

Ritchie Daal, who took over as Head Coach on July 23 to replace Carlos Arrindell, will remain the team's Head Coach. Under Daal's guidance, Almere was 7-5-1, while the team moved from eighth to sixth place. Tom Groot, who was also added to the staff on July 23, will remain Daal's assistant. RenÚ Rijst, who since July combined pitching with the duties of Pitching Coach, also will return to the staff, but this time will only be Pitching Coach. But while Rijst has announced his retirement, Almere always has an additional arm available when needed. This year's Assistant Coach Rob Keur will return to the club's First Division second team.
The team's management remained intact with Fred van Leeuwen (team manager), Gerard Stenzler (general manager) and Marco Wels (business manager), while Gerard Kremer will be the dug-out scorer again.
(October 5)

2007 Winter Roster Instant Holland Almere '90
Pitchers:
RHP Jerry Breek, RHP Forstin Coenraad, RHP Cliff Foster, RHP Derrick Isenia, RHP Patrick de Lange, RHP Erik Remmerswaal, LHP Nick Veltkamp.
Catchers:
Giovanni Samboe, Jeffrey de Vrieze.
Infielders:
Ivanon Coffie, Randy Daal, Ricky Daal, Frank van Leeuwen, Niels van Weert.
Outfielders:
Wesley Bernardus, Eugene Kingsale, Bryan Engelhardt.
Utility Players:
Derick Francisca, Emeron Lourens, Rodney Michel.

Coaching Staff:
Ritchie Daal (Head Coach), Tom Groot (Coach), RenÚ Rijst (Pitching Coach).
Team Staff:
Gerard Kremer (Dug-Out Scorer), Fred van Leeuwen (Team Manager), Gerard Stenzler (General Manager), Marco Wels (Business Manager).


Haarlem Baseball Week sets dates for 2008
Nederlands
HAARLEM (Neth.) - The organisation of the Haarlem Baseball Week has set the dates for the 23rd edition of this bi-annual international tournament in the Olympic year 2008.
During the 22nd tournament earlier this year, it already was announced that the next tournament would take place in July. Now, the dates have been set. The tournament opens on Friday, July 4 and ends on Sunday, July 13.
The first Haarlem Baseball Week was held in 1961 and is being organised bi-annually since 1972.

This year, the Haarlem Baseball Week was won by the Netherlands for the second time in row. Other participants this year came from China, Chinese Taipei, Cuba, Japan and USA.
In 2008, national teams again will participate in the event and it is expected that some of the teams will bring their Olympic roster to Haarlem, as the tournament is close to the Olympic Games, which are being held in August in Beijing (China).

Before the Haarlem Baseball Week, the international World Port Tournament will held its eleventh edition next year in Rotterdam from August 2-12. The first game on that event will be played in exactly 300 days.
(October 6)


KNBSB announces promotion/relegation details 2007
Nederlands
NIEUWEGEIN (Neth.) - On its website, the Royal Dutch Baseball and Softball Association (KNBSB) announced the rulings for promotion to and relegation from the big league for the 2007 season.

In case the Dutch big league will exist of nine teams in 2007, the team that finishes in ninth place automatically will relegate to the First Division.
The team that finishes in eighth place will play a best-of-five Play-Off against the champion of the First Division. The winner of that series will play in the highest league in 2008, while the losing team is to play in the First Division. This means, the big league will have eight teams again in 2008.
No ruling has been published when the big league will exist of eight teams next year.

This season, eight teams were playing in the highest division, but no relegation-rulings were in effect. On the other hand, the First Division-champion earned the right to promote to the big league. RCH-Pingu´ns finished in first placed this season and announced it has the intention of playing in the big league next year. However, the club from Heemstede has not yet committed itself of playing on the highest level.
(October 6)


HCAW Baseball School starts second year
Nederlands
BUSSUM (Neth.) - The second season of the Mr. Cocker HCAW Baseball School will open on Sunday, October 15. Last year, the first edition was very successful.

In five groups, 120 youth players from clubs from the central part of the country will participate in ten weekly practices of an hour and a half, to be held in Bussum. The last session is scheduled for Sunday, December 17. More than last season, there will be more attention to the level of the individual player to determine the group-aligments, the press release states.
The Baseball School not only focusses on talented players, but on all players from the region.
The goal of the Baseball School is to increase the level of youthplayers in the region. They not only want to improve individual youth players, but also the several youth competions.

Former HCAW Head Coach Bill Froberg again is in charge of the Mr. Cocker HCAW Baseball School.
Froberg, who also coached for Haarlem Nicols, Neptunus and the National Junior Team, will be assisted by former and current national team players, who all played or have played in the highest division, such as Pitcher Eric de Vries, Catcher Sidney de Jong, Infielders Frank Koene, Jurjan Koenen and Ralph Milliard and Outfielder Ronald Jaarsma.
(October 6)


New Coach prepares with RCH-Pingu´ns
Nederlands
HEEMSTEDE (Neth.) - Experienced baseball coach Guus van Dee will be in charge of RCH-Pingu´ns, when the team enters the big league next season. While the club officially has to confirm its participation in the highest division, it almost surely will opt to do so. RCH-Pingu´ns earned the right to play in the highest league after winning the First Division-championship this season. Last year, the team also finished in the first place in the First Division, but then lost a best-of-five Play-Off vs. Instant Holland Almere '90, which therefore remained in the big league.


...Guus van Dee...
Guus van Dee will return to coaching on the club level after a 10-year absence.
After playing and coaching for Terrasvogels, Van Dee developed himself into a knowledgeable baseball coach. In 1988, he teached at San Diego State University in the USA and assisted wellknown coach Jim Dietz with the baseball team.
After returning to the Netherlands, Van Dee was the Head Coach for Sparks from 1989-1991 in the First Division. In 1993-1994, he coached Badhoevedorp, then Kinheim-2 in 1996, which was his last season on the club-level.
From 1998-2002, Guus van Dee was the Field Manager of the Dutch National Cadets Team (AA) and in charge of the national youth baseball camps.
Hereafter, he coached the women softball-team of Onze Gezellen in 2003 and became an executive, as he was member of the Board of the Dutch Federation from 2003-2005 where he was in charge of baseball affairs.

When RCH-Pingu´ns indeed will play in the Dutch big league, Guus van Dee will make his debut on the highest level.
,,I never coached on the big league-level, that was still missing'', Van Dee said. ,,I got this opportunity and it will be fun to do. It will be a challenge to make a big step with a lot of young, talented players. That's my ambition and then to hope we can play a role in which we can make it other teams difficult. I'm anxious to start.''
Guus van Dee succeeds Ramses Meering, who completed his first season as Head Coach of the team, after being one of the players before that. RCH already played before in the big league and from 1997-2002, Meering was one of the players, but made his debut on the highest level in 1992, while playing for Amsterdam Pirates. Meering is unable to combine coaching with his regular job, but will remain with the team. ,,We will discuss my role after completion of the transfer period on November 1. I will help in whatever capacity possible'', Meering said. Assistant Coach Jeroen Roozen remains in the coaching staff, but Pitching Coach Dave Dusseau has retired.
Czech short stop Peter Baroch is scheduled to return to Heemstede next year, as is Mexican pitcher Al Morales. New Head Coach Guus van Dee confirmed that RHP Martin Kuipers (Instant Holland Almere '90), RHP Jan-Willem Geerts (Amsterdam Pirates) and C/3B Floris Morang (Corendon Kinheim) will play for RCH-Pingu´ns next year.
(October 6)


Pirates announces new additions
Nederlands
AMSTERDAM (Neth.) - Amsterdam Pirates on Tuesday-afternoon officially announced their new players for the 2007 season, including three national team players and three players, who played in the national junior squad (AAA).


...All smiles for three national team players who join Pirates...
...Nick Stuifbergen, Sidney de Jong, Kenny Berkenbosch...
(Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
National team-players Sidney de Jong (catcher), Nick Stuifbergen (RHP) and Kenny Berkenbosch (RHP) will all play in the yellow-green jerseys of Pirates next year. This year, the trio played for Mr. Cocker HCAW, which finished in fifth place after a troublesome season. Next week, the three will travel with the national team to Taiwan for participation in the Intercontinental Cup, preceeded by two games in China against the national team of that country. Also coming from HCAW are Jos de Jong (RHP) and Bas de Jong (outfielder). Also coming to Amsterdam are Roy Harteveld (first base), Ferd van Stekelenburg (outfield) and Za´r Koeiman (infield), who all played for the national youth team, with whom they participated in the World Championships in Cuba recently where they reached the quarter finals, as well as Joey Berkenbosch (infield) and Djurving Cleofa (utility).

...Head Coach Louis Hofer...
...interviewed by local...
...TV-station AT5...
(Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
Harteveld played for DOOR Tridents, which won the First Division national championship, while Van Stekelenburg played for Instant Holland Almere '90, which finished in sixth place. Berkenbosch, the brother of Kenny, also was on the Almere-roster this year, but didn't play. Koeiman played for Amsterdam Pirates 2 in the First Division and has been added to the big league-roster. Cleofa is coming from the Netherlands Antilles.

Sidney de Jong, Nick Stuifbergen en Jos de Jong are all returning back to the team, where they already have played before. ,,It's something like coming home again'', 'Mr. Pirates' Loek Loevendie, the co-founder of the club, said. ,,I was ready for a new challenge'', catcher Sidney de Jong said. ,,Part of my heart has always been with Pirates. I played here in youth teams and moved up to the big league-team. I know a lot of people here. Besides that, a city like Amsterdam deserves a top-team. Pirates is playing on the most beautiful complex in the country and always has attracted a lot of spectators. There will be nice things going to happen next year in Amsterdam.''
Nick Stuifbergen and Kenny Berkenbosch also are convinced that Pirates will be a contender for the Play-Offs in 2007. ,,We're ready for it'', the two pitchers said.

This season, Pirates finished in eighth and last place in the big league. In the late eighties and early nineties, Pirates was one of the top-teams in the league, qualifying for the postseason (Play-Offs and/or Holland Series) five consecutive times from 1987-1992 (there was no postseason in 1988) and winning the Dutch title in 1987 and 1990. ,,This has been a season the club unworthy. So, some people within the club joined forces to get Pirates back in the top'', said acting Chairman John Witte. ,,It has been to long ago that Pirates was successful'', Head Coach Louis Hofer stated. ,,We want to be a contender again, as Pirates belongs in the top. Old times has to come back.''
(October 24)


Dutch Softball Women
Terrasvogels, Sparks in Holland Series
Nederlands
SANTPOORT / HAARLEM (Neth.) - A4 Terrasvogels and Sparks Haarlem will face each other for the third year in a row in the Holland Series, which will open next Friday.
Terrasvogels and Sparks both swept their Play-Offs Series by also winning Game Three on Sunday.

At Santpoort, Terrasvogels won 5-1 vs. Computer SOS Tex Town Tigers in a game which was interrupted for 48 minutes by rain after six innings.
Terrasvogels broke a 1-1 tie with four runs in the fifth inning, highlighted by a 2-run double by Nathalie Gosewehr.

At Haarlem, Sparks won 4-3 vs. Twins, which came back twice to even the score.
In the sixth, Sparks broke a 3-3 tie when pinch-runner Maaike Blaauwgeers scored the fourth run on a single by Jolanda Kroesen.

Because the Play-Offs have ended after three games, the best-of-five Holland Series is moved ahead one week and opens next Friday in Santpoort.
All games can be followed on this site with a Live Play-by-Play.
(October 1)

Recaps, Line Scores & Box Scores


Holland Series opener rains out
Nederlands
SANTPOORT (Neth.) - The opening game of the 2006 Holland Series between A4 Terrasvogels and Sparks Haarlem, scheduled for Friday-evening (tonight) in Santpoort, has been canceled because of steady rain and field conditions.

Contrary to what happened in previous years in case of cancelations, the game has not been moved to the next day. In that scenario, other scheduled games also are moved ahead.
Friday's game has been re-scheduled for next Tuesday, meaning the Series now will open on Saturday at Haarlem instead of Santpoort, resulting in Terrasvogels losing its home advantage for the opening game. Sunday's scheduled Game Three in Santpoort now will become Game Two, with tonights canceled game becoming Game Three on Tuesday.

In 2004, the last time the Play-Offs and Holland Series were bothered by rain and cancelations, games were moved to the next day, with following games being moved ahead also.
(October 6)

Adjusted Schedule Holland Series
DateGameSiteTime
Saturday, October 7Sparks Haarlem vs. TerrasvogelsHaarlem14:00 PM
Sunday, October 8Terrasvogels vs. Sparks HaarlemSantpoort14:00 PM
Tuesday, October 10Terrasvogels vs. Sparks HaarlemSantpoort20:30 PM
Saturday, October 14Sparks Haarlem vs. TerrasvogelsHaarlem14:00 PM (if needed)
Sunday, October 15Terrasvogels vs. Sparks HaarlemSantpoort14:00 PM (if needed)


Sparks Haarlem one-runs Terrasvogels in opener
Nederlands
HAARLEM (Neth.) - Reigning champion Sparks Haarlem opened the 22nd edition of the Holland Series on Saturday-afternoon with a narrow 1-0 win vs. A4 Terrasvogels. Game Two will be played on Sunday in Santpoort. Game Three, which is the canceled game from Friday, is tentatively scheduled for next Tuesday. In case Sparks also wins on Sunday, the third game will be played next weekend, as that then will be a championship clinching game. When Terrasvogels wins, the third game will be played on Tuesday-evening.
In the Promotion/Relegation Play-Off, Centrals won 10-6 and 12-8 vs. Gryphons to secure its place in next years big league.

The lone run of the Holland Series-game was scored in the third inning when Kim Kluijskens reached on an error, then scored on three following singles.
Winning pitcher Crissy Autry struckout eight and gave up only three basehits.
(October 7)

Recap, Line Score & Box Score
Complete Play-by-Play Game One
Holland Series Website KNBSB


Terrasvogels wins Game Two in tie-break
Nederlands
SANTPOORT (Neth.) - A4 Terrasvogels evened the best-of-five Holland Series vs. Sparks Haarlem on Sunday with an 1-0 win in eight innings.
Nicole Wessels scored the lone run in the game on a basesloaded squeeze by Petra van Heijst.
The Series continues next Tuesday-evening in Santpoort with Game Three, which starts at 8:30 PM. A Live Play-by-Play will then again be available.
(October 8)

Recap, Line Score & Box Score
Complete Play-by-Play Game Two
Holland Series Website KNBSB


Sparks needs tie-break for new lead
Nederlands
SANTPOORT (Neth.) - Sparks Haarlem leads the best-of-five Holland Series vs. A4 Terrasvogels again, but needed two extra innings to accomplish that. On Tuesday-evening Friday's rained out game was made up and Sparks won 5-2 in nine innings, after Terrasvogels failed to decide the game in the home seventh. With the win, Sparks leads 2-1 and needs one win to remain Dutch champion. Game Four is scheduled for next Saturday in Haarlem. If needed, Game Five will be played on Sunday in Santpoort. A Live Play-by-Play will be available again.
(October 10)

Recap, Line Score & Box Score
Complete Play-by-Play Game Three
Holland Series Website KNBSB


Sparks again wins Dutch title!
Nederlands
HAARLEM (Neth.) - Sparks Haarlem captured its third consecutive title in a row and fifth in the last six years by winning Game Four of the Softball Holland Series vs. A4 Terrasvogels on Saturday with 1-0. It was the third time this Series that a game ended in a 1-0 score.
The lone run was scored in the sixth inning. Winning pitcher Crissy Autry was named Series MVP.
(October 14)

Complete Recap, Line Score & Box Score
Final Standings & Scores
Complete Play-by-Play Game Four
Holland Series Website KNBSB


International Baseball
Greys win again in Belgium
Nederlands
HOBOKEN (Belgium) - With an 8-0 shutout at Hoboken Pioneers, Royal Merksem Greys won the Belgian Series, 3-1, to remain the baseball champion of Belgium.

In the regular season, Royal Greys already was the best team and finished in first place with a 24-13 record. It was only appropiate that Greys was to face Hoboken Pioneers in the best-of-five final, as the team from Hoboken finished in second place with a 21-7 record.
In the best-of-three Play-Offs, the Greys swept Borgerhout Squirrels by winning 10-8 and 5-1.
Pioneers also won twice in their Play-Offs, beating Brasschaat Braves, 1-0 and 10-6. In the opener, Hans Heyrman batted in the lone run. In the second game, Pioneers got a scare when they led 6-0, but then Alain Lambeau homered twice for Brasschaat to narrow the lead 6-5. After Brasschaat tied the score, Pioneers won in the ninth inning on a grand slam homerun by Czech Jan Drabek.

In the Belgian Series, Pioneers opened with a 2-1 win, but then Greys came back with a big 8-1 win the next day. A week later, Greys shutout Pioneers twice, 5-0 and 8-0, to win the Belgian title again.
(October 5)


Grosseto and Rimini in Italian final
Nederlands
GROSSETO (Italy) - Le Colonie di Maremma Grosseto and Telemarket Rimini will open the best-of-seven Italian Series Friday-evening, after Rimini dethroned reigning champion Italeri Fortitudo Bologna last weekend.
Earlier, Orel Anzio finished in last place in the Serie A/1 and relegated to the Serie A/2, but more surprising either T&A San Marino or Ceci Negri Parma was to be the second team that relegated. Parma is one of the most wellknown and successful Italian baseball teams, winning a record European Cups, but was in jeopardy of relegating this season. That eventually didn't happen, as they finished in eighth place, meaning that San Marino was the second team to relegate to the Serie A/2. Also a surprise, as San Marino last year played in the final vs. Bologna and this year won both the Italian Cup and the European Cup. This means that a team that is not playing in the highest national league not only will participate in the European Cup-tournament next year, but, being the Cupholder, also will organise it.

Rimini dethroned Bologna as Italian champion by winning their best-of-seven Play-Off, 4-2.
Bologna opened with a 4-3 win in 13 innings, but then Rimini came back with a 13-3 win and also won the next two games, 5-2 and 6-5.
Next, Bologna won Game Five 5-2, but the next day, which was last Saturday, Rimini won 6-2 to reach the Loud Baseball Series (Loud is the sponsor of the Italian Series).

Grosseto reached the final by winning their Play-Off vs. CaffŔ Danesi Nettuno, 4-1.
Grosseto started with a 2-0 shutout-win, but Nettuno won the next game, 5-2. Grosseto then came back to win the next three games in a row, 8-2, 8-1 and 5-1, to win their series.
(October 5)


Rimini opens final with win
Nederlands
GROSSETO (Italy) - Telemarket Rimini opened the best-of-seven Loud Italian Series on Friday-evening with a 3-2 win against Le Colonie di Maremma Grosseto in a defensive poor game. Grosseto commited four errors and Rimini one, but the three official scorers could have given both teams an additional error. Game Two will be played on Saturday-evening in Grosseto.

Rimini broke a 2-2 tie in the fifth inning after which both teams didn't got any scoring opportunity.
The team from Manager Mike Romano scored its first run in the first inning. Fausto Solano led off with a single and moved on a sac-bunt by Andrew Green, then scored on a single by James Buccheri. Another single followed, but two runners stranded.
Grosseto came alongside in the second inning. Gino Lollio opened with a single and advanced when Junior Zamora flied out. After Yojane Valera struckout, Lollio stole third base, then scored on a throwing error by the catcher.
Rimini regained the lead in the fourth at bat. Asdrubal Oropeza singled, moved on a sac-bunt by Matteo Baldacci, then scored when an outfield-error followed a single by Fausto Solano.
Grosseto tied the score again in the home fourth. First, Jairo Ramos Gizzi walked for the team of Manager Mauro Mazzoti (who last year coached champion Bologna). He then advanced on an one-out single by Junior Zamora and scored when Yojane Valera doubled.
In the fifth inning, Rimini took the lead for the third time and this time hold onto it. In this at bat, Luigi Carrozza doubled and scored on a single by Daniel Franco Agli.
Jaime Navarro went the distance for Grosseto, while Francisco Trejo started for Rimini. But Trejo was relieved by American Brian Looney in the fifth inning, who struckout six and gave up only three hits and became the winning pitcher.
(October 6)


Grosseto evens Series
Nederlands
GROSSETO (Italy) - Le Colonie di Maremma Grosseto on Saturday-evening won 6-1 against Telemarket Rimini to even the Loud Italian Series at 1-1. The Series now shifts to Rimini, where Game Three will be played next Monday with the next games scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday.

Grosseto took a 1-0 lead in the second inning when Yojane Valera homered with two outs. He would be their lone runner in the first three innings.
Grosseto-pitcher Riccardo De Santis pitched strongly, as he retired the first eight batters in a row and took a No-Hitter into the fifth inning. De Santis went the distance and gave up only four hits.
In the third inning, Matteo Baldacci, the ninth batter in the order, became Rimini's first runner when he reached on an error with two outs, but a grounder ended the inning.
In the fourth inning, De Santis walked James Buccheri with one out, who then advanced on a balk, but again two outs followed.
In the fifth, De Santis started with two strikeouts, then Asdrubal Oropeza broke his No-Hitter with a bunt-single, but stranded at first base.
Rimini finally was able to come alongside in the sixth inning. Fausto Solano led off with a walk, then advanced on a sac-bunt by Andrew Green. Moments later, he scored when first baseman Jairo Ramos Gizzi made an error on a grounder by James Buccheri.

Grosseto recovered and answered with a 5-run rally in the home eighth. Alberto De Santis led off with a walk, then everyone was safe on a grounder by Victor Gutierrez. After the two moved on a sac-bunt by Gabriele Ermini, the bases were loaded when Jairo Ramos Gizzi was walked intentionally. A grounder towards third base by Junior Zamora then led to a throwing error towards home, resulting in two runs and a renewed lead for Grosseto. Gino Lollio followed with a 2-run double to make it 5-1. Lollio then scored himself when Yojane Valera singled.
(October 7)


Rimini re-takes lead in Italy
Nederlands
RIMINI (Italy) - Telemarket Rimini re-took the lead in the Loud Italian Series on Monday-evening by winning 6-2 vs. Le Colonnie di Maremma Grosseto. Game Four will be played on Tuesday-evening.

Grosseto opened the score in the third inning on a double by Jairo Ramos Gizzi, but in the home third Rimini answered with two unearned runs and hold onto the lead. In the third, Fausto Solano reached on an error and moved on a sac-bunt and a grounder. After Mario Chiarini walked, Solano scored the tying run when Luigi Carrozza also reached on an error. A single by Daniel Franco Agli resulted in a 2-1 lead. Rimini added a run in the fourth inning when Asdrubal Oropeza led off with a homerun.
In the sixth inning, Rimini scored three runs to take a decisive 6-1 lead. In this at bat, Grosseto made another error which resulted in a run and a pitching change. Emiliano Ginanneschi took over from starter Antony Ferrari, but gave up an RBI-single to James Buccheri, then loaded the bases with a walk, before another run was scored on a squeeze by Luigi Carrozza.
In the seventh inning, Grosseto scored its second run on a sac-fly by Jairo Ramos Gizzi. Winning pitcher Roberto Cabalista struckout five and gave up nine hits in six innings, then Leonardo D'Amico earned a save by pitching the last three innings in which he gave up only one hit and struckout four batters.
(October 9)


Rimini one win away from title
Nederlands
RIMINI (Italy) - Telemarket Rimini on Tuesday-evening defeated Le Colonnie di Maremma Grosseto 1-0 in ten innings to take a 3-1 lead in the Loud Italian Series. Rimini needs one win to become Italian champion and that can happen on Wednesday-evening when Game Five is being played.

The lone and winning run in the Casa dei Pirati was scored in the tenth inning with two outs. With one out, Asdrubal Oropeza walked, then moved on a sac-bunt by Matteo Baldacci. Next, both Fausto Solano and Andrew Green were walked intentionally. Oropeza then scored the winning run when James Buccheri singled.
Rimini was close to a run in the home third. Veteran Elio Gambuti (who turned 45 in September) led off with a single, then Asdrubal Oropeza doubled, but then two flyouts and a strikeout followed.
In the seventh, Grosseto had a chance to take the lead. After two strikeouts, Andrea Sgnaolin reached on an error and Luca Bischeri followed with a single. The bases were loaded when Andrea De Santis walked, which led to a pitching change, as Brian Looney took over for Francisco Trejo. The inning then ended when Victor Gutierrez grounded Looney's first pitch back to him for a groundout.
(October 10)


Rimini captures Italian title
Nederlands
RIMINI (Italy) - Telemarket Rimini is the Italian baseball champion of 2006. On Wednesday-evening, the Rimini Pirates played another exciting and close game against Le Colonie di Maremma Grosseto and won 2-1 to win the Loud Italian Series, 4-1.
This is Rimini's first title since 2002 and eleventh overall since it won the Italian championship for the first time in 1975. In that season, American-born Mike Romano made his debut with the club as one of its pitchers. Romano went on to become one of the leading players for the team as both a pitcher and an infielder, but also being a solid hitter. Romano also became a member of the national Italian squad and has remained with Rimini ever since, as he currently is the longtime manager of the team.

Rimini took a 1-0 lead in the fifth inning when Asdrubal Oropeza singled with one out and moved into scoring position on a sac-bunt by Matteo Baldacci. He then advanced to third on a wild pitch by Riccardo De Santis and scored on an infield-hit by Fausto Solano.

In the seventh inning, Grosseto took some risks, as Junior Zamora singled with one out, but then was thrown out on second base on a great play by leftfielder Andrew Green when he tried to stretch it into a double. Grosseto then tied the score in the eighth at bat, but failed to take the lead. At the beginning of the inning, Leonardo D'Amico took over the pitching for starter Sandy Patrone, but walked lead-off hitter Luca Bischeri, who was then replaced by pinch-runner Manuel Marussich, who advanced on a wild pitch. A strikeout and a flyout followed, but then Gabriele Ermini singled to score Marussich. Next batter, powerhitter Jairo Ramos Gizzi, was then walked intentionally, but the runners moved on a double steal. Ilo Bartolucci took over for D'Amico and ended the inning when Yojane Valera hit a comeback-grounder, leaving two runners in scoring position.

In the home eighth, Rimini immediately re-took the lead. With two outs, Andrew Green and James Buccheri singled to put runners on first and third base, after which Emiliano Ginanneschi relieved starter Riccardo De Santis. But then, Mario Chiarini reached on an infield-hit, enabling Green to score the go-ahead run. Rimini got the bases loaded when Luigi Carrozza reached on an error, but a pop-fly ended the inning. In the ninth inning, Grosseto hit three flyouts to end the game and the season.
(October 11)


Metrostars capture Austrian title
Nederlands
VIENNA (Austria) - Vienna Metrostars successfully defended the Austrian title and won the championship again. On Saturday, the team ended the season with a 4-1 victory vs. Union Kufstein Vikings to win the best-of-five final of the Austrian Baseball League, 3-1.

The Metrostars reached the final by winning their Play-Off vs. Superfund Wanderers, 3-1. Vienna started with a 7-6 loss, then won the next three, 10-1, 4-3 and 13-0.
Opponent Kufstein swept Dornbirn Indians, 3-0, by winning 18-4, 4-3 and 9-2 to reach the final.

The Metrostars were the favorite to win the title again this year, but Kufstein played very well in the semi-final.
Vienna opened the final last week in Hirnbach with a 6-4 victory, then won the next game convincingly, 11-1.
On Saturday, Vienna was beaten 8-3, as the team saved one of its leading pitchers for a possible fifth game. But it didn't come that far, as they won the next game 4-1 to win the title.
The final attracted a lot of spectators and had a good media coverage.
(October 8)


Championship final underway in Czech Republic
Nederlands
BRNO (Czech Rep.) - Reigning Czech champion Draci Brno started the best-of-five final on Saturday with a surprise loss vs. Arrows Ostrava, but then came back with a victory on Sunday. The Series continues next Saturday in Ostrava.

In the semi-final, Draci Brno, which won the title the last eleven years in a row since 1995, defeated Technika Brno, 3-1.
Draci opened with a 12-5 win, but then Technika won the next day, 4-2. The next weekend, Draci clinched a spot in the final by winning 8-3 and 11-8.

Arrows Ostrava had remarkable comeback against Krc Altron Prague, which won the first two games of the best-of-five Play-Off, 3-2 and 11-10.
Ostrava, which finished in third place in the regular season, then came back to win the next three games, 6-1, 8-6 and 7-6 to reach the final.

In the championship series, Arrows continued its strong performance, as they won the opener in Brno on Saturday, 6-5. On Sunday, Draci came back and won 8-2.

In the weekend, former Major League-pitcher Al Leiter visited Prague and Brno. Leiter, who played in the Majors for the New York Yankees, New York Mets, Toronto Blue Jays and Florida Marlins from 1987-2005, conducted a clinic on Saturday on the beautiful complex of Krc Altron Prague, then attended Game Two of the championship series on Sunday in Brno.
(October 8)


A's, Cards, Yanks win Play-Off openers
Nederlands
MINNEAPOLIS / SAN DIEGO / NEW YORK (USA) - The Oakland Athletics, St. Louis Cardinals and New York Yankees all won their Division Series-opener on Tuesday. The fourth Play-Off opens on Wednesday.

American League Division Series
At Minneapolis (Minnesota), Oakland won 3-2 vs. the Minnesota Twins to open the the American League Division Series.
Frank Thomas homered twice for the A's and became the oldest player (38) Play-Off history to homer twice in a game. The A's defeated Twins-ace Johan Santana, who won 19 games in the regular season. Barry Zito was the winning pitcher.

At New York (New York), the Yankees defeated the Detroit Tigers, 8-4.
Yankee short stop Derek Jeter went 5-for-5, including a homerun.

National League Division Series
At San Diego (California), the Cardinals won 5-1 vs. the San Diego Padres.
Powerhitter Albert Pujols homered for the Cards, a few pitches after catcher Mike Piazza had missed a foul-fly.
(October 3)


Second win Oakland
Nederlands
MINNEAPOLIS / NEW YORK (USA) - The Oakland Athletics on Wednesday took a 2-0 lead in their best-of-five Play-Off vs. the Minnesota Twins, while the New York Mets nipped the Los Angeles Dodgers in their opener.

American League Division Series
At Minneapolis (Minnesota), more than 55.000 spectactors saw Oakland break a 2-2 tie when Mark Kotsay hit a 2-run inside-the-park-homerun in the seventh inning to take a 4-2 lead. The A's won 5-2.
Both Minnesota-runs were the result of homeruns, hit by Michael Cuddyer and Justin Morneau.

At New York (New York), the second game between the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers was postponed because of a threatening rain and storm system.
The game initially was postponed from 8 to 10 PM and more than 50.000 spectators waited, but the game was called out of precaution. This because of the importance of the game and preventing it to be halted when it was started. The game will now be played on Thursday-afternoon.

National League Division Series
At New York (New York), the New York Mets opened their series vs. the Los Angeles Dodgers with a 6-5 win in an afternoon-game.
Carlos Delgado went 4-for-5, including a homerun, in his first-ever Play-Off game, while Cliff Floyd also homered.
Rookie John Maine started for the Mets instead of Orlando 'El Duque' Hernandez, who tore a muscle in his calf the day before while working out.
The highlight in the game came in the second inning when two Dodger-runners (Jeff Kent and J.D. Drew) were both thrown out at the plate in the same action. Three former Dodger-players were responsible for this unique double play.
(October 4)


Cards, Mets take 2-0 lead
Nederlands
NEW YORK / SAN DIEDO (USA) - The St. Louis Cardinals on Thursday also won their second game at San Diego, beating the San Diego Padres, 2-0. The Detroit Tigers evened their Series vs. the New York Yankees by winning 4-3.

American League Division Series
At New York (New York), Detroit came from behind to win 4-3 vs. the Yankees after trailing 3-1. After the game, the two teams flew to Detroit, where Game Three will be played on Friday.
In the fourth inning, the Yankees took a 3-1 lead when Justin Verlander gave up a single to Hideki Matsui, then walked Jorge Posada, followed by a one-out, 3-run homerun by Johnny Damon.
In the fifth, the Tigers got a run back, then came alongside when Carlos Guillen homered in the sixth. In the seventh, the Tigers took a 4-3 lead on an RBI-triple by Curtis Granderson.

National League Division Series
At San Diego (California), the Cardinals shutout the Paders, 2-0, and now will go back to St. Louis with a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five. The series continues on Saturday.
St. Louis scored both runs in the fourth inning. Preston Wilson led off with a double, then scored on a single by Albert Pujols, who reached second base after a rundown in which the second baseman failed to take over the base. With one out, Pujols scored on an infield-hit by Jim Edmonds.

At New York (New York), the New York Mets took a 2-0 lead in their series vs. the Los Angeles Dodgers by winning 4-1.
The Mets opened the score on a grounder in the third, then added a run on a sac-fly in the fifth. New York then scored twice in the sixth on another grounder and on a single by JosÚ Reyes.
The lone Dodger-run was scored in the eighth when Wilson Betemit homered.
(October 5)


Oakland sweeps Minnesota; Detroit takes lead
Nederlands
OAKLAND / DETROIT (USA) - The Oakland Athletics on Friday won 8-3 vs. the Minnesota Twins to complete a 3-game sweep and advance to the American League Championships Series. Oakland will play in the ALCS for the first time since 1992. In that year, Oakland lost to the Toronto Blue Jays, who then reached the World Series. This is the first time since 1990 that Oakland won a postseason-series. In that year, Oakland defeated the Boston Red Sox in the ALCS, also with a sweep (4-0).
The Detroit Tigers took a 2-1 lead in their series against the New York Yankees with a 6-0 shutout-win, the first postseason shutout since 1984 for Detroit, which plays in its first postseason in 19 years.

American League Division Series
At Oakland (California), the A's opened the score in the second inning when Eric Chavez hit a homerun and Marco Scutaro added a 2-out, RBI-double. The A's scored two more runs in the next at bat on a 2-run homerun by Milton Bradley.
The Twins cut that lead in half by scoring a run in the fourth and sixth inning. In the fourth, Torii Hunter hit a 2-out homerun. In the sixth, Justin Morneau first singled, then Torii Hunter doubled. Rondell White followed with a single that scored Morneau, but Hunter, who also tried to score, was thrown out in a close play at home. It appeared that catcher Jason Kendall missed Hunter while tagging, but Home Plate Umpire Mike Everett had the good position to look into the play and called Hunter out.
Oakland then decided the game with a 4-run rally in the seventh inning. First, a run was scored on a basesloaded walk for Nick Swisher, then Marco Scutaro again hit a 2-out double, this time resulting in three runs and an 8-2 lead.
Minnesota scored its third run in the eighth when Justin Morneau hit a 2-out homerun.

At Detroit (Michigan), it was a match-up of two veteran lefthanders, 41-year old Kenny Rogers (Detroit) and 43-year old Randy Johnson (New York). The first threw seven strong shutout innings, before being relieved in the eighth. The latter was pitching with a herniatic disc in his back (making him questionable to throw) and was hit hard in the second and sixth inning, but did a good job despite that.
The Tigers took a 3-0 lead in the second inning. Carlos Guillen and Ivan Rodriguez opened with singles, then the first scored on a single by Sean casey. With one out, Curtis Granderson grounded to second baseman Robinson Cano, who made a great play to force out Casey, but a double play couldn't be completed and Rodriguez scored. The third run was then scored on a single by Placido Polanco.
Detroit added two runs in the sixth inning on back-to-back doubles by Ivan 'Pudge' Rodriguez and Sean Casey. The offensive power continued in the seventh when Granderson led off with a homerun.
(October 6)


Tigers eliminate Yankees; San Diego stays alive; Mets clinch
Nederlands
DETROIT / ST. LOUIS (USA) - The Detroit Tigers defeated the New York Yankees 8-3 on Saturday-evening to eliminate the Yankees and win their American League Division Series 3-1. The Tigers now will meet the Oakland A's in the best-of-seven American League Championship Series, which starts on Tuesday.
Earlier in the day, the San Diego Padres won 3-1 vs. the St. Louis Cardinals to stay alive in their National League Division Series. The Cards now lead the series 2-1 and Game Four will be played on Sunday.
In the evening, the New York Mets completed a 3-game sweep vs. Los Angeles Dodgers by winning 9-5, despite being outhit 16-14. The Mets will meet the winner of the St. Louis Cardinals vs. San Diego Padres.

American League Division Series
At Detroit (Michigan), the Tigers routed the Yankees and already had an 8-0 lead after six innings. Tiger-starter Jeremy Bonderman pitched outstanding and gave up only five hits in 8 1/3 inning.
The Tigers took a 3-0 lead in the second inning off starter Jaret Wright. First, Magglio Ordo˝ez led off with a homerun. Then, Ivan Rodriguez walked with one out and Craig Monroe followed with a 2-run homerun to make it 3-0.
Another run was scored in the third on a single by Ivan Rodriguez, then three more runs followed in the fifth at bat on an RBI-single by Magglio Ordo˝ez, an RBI-double by Carlos Guillen and a sac-fly by I-Rod. In the sixth, Sean Casey contributed with an RBI-double to make it 8-0.
The Yankees scored their first run in the seventh on a force play-grounder by Hideki Matsui, then added two in the ninth on a 2-run homerun by Jorge Posada.

National League Division Series
At St. Louis (Missouri), the Padres scored its three runs in the fourth inning, then hold onto the lead behind strong pitching of Chris Young, who struckout nine and gave up only four hits in the 6 2/3 inning he pitched.
In the fourth, Adrian Gonzalez singled with one out, then Mike Cameron walked. The two scored when next batter Russell Branyan doubled. Moments later, Branyan scored on a sac-fly by Geoff Blum.
St. Louis scored its lone run in the eighth inning when pinch-hitter So Taguchi led off with a homerun off Scott Linebrink, who had just taken over the pitching.

At Los Angeles (California), the Mets were leading 4-0 after three innings, but the Dodgers came back to take a 5-4 lead in the fifth inning. New York recovered, scored three runs in the sixth and went on to win the game and the Series.
Singles by David Wright, Cliff Floyd and Shawn Green gave New York a 3-0 lead in the first, then Green added an RBI-double in the fourth to make it 4-0.
In the home fourth, the Dodgers scored twice on a single by James Loney. Los Angeles took a 5-4 lead by scoring three runs in th fifth on a 2-run homerun by Jeff Kent and a basesloaded walk.
New York came back with three runs in the sixth at bat on RBI-singles by JosÚ Reyes, Paul Lo Duca and Carlos Beltran, then scored two more in the eighth inning.
(October 7)


Cardinals advance to NLCS
Nederlands
ST. LOUIS, Missouri (USA) - The St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday-evening defeated the San Diego Padres 6-2 to win their Division Series 3-1 and now will meet the New York Mets in the National League Championship Series, which opens on Wednesday.

National League Division Series
San Diego scored twice in the first inning on a basesloaded walk and a force play-grounder, but St. Louis came alongside immediately in the home first on a 2-run single by Ronnie Belliard.
The Cards rallied for four runs in the sixth at bat to decide the game. With Albert Pujols on base, Juan Encarnacion tripled and later scored on a single by Scott Spiezio. An error on a grounder by Chris Carpenter and a squeeze-bunt by David Eckstein accounted for the other two runs.
For St. Louis this is their third trip to the NLCS in a row and fifth in the last seven years.
(October 8)


Detroit opens ALCS with win
Nederlands
OAKLAND, California (USA) - The Detroit Tigers on Tuesday-evening defeated the Oakland Athletics 5-1 in the opener of the American League Championship Series.

Detroit opened the score in the third inning with two runs. With two outs, Brandon Inge hit a homerun, then Curtis Granderson doubled, after which the bases were loaded on two walks. Granderson then scored on an infield-hit by Magglio Ordo˝ez.
Three runs were added in the fourth at bat. Ivan Rodriguez led off with a homerun, then Marcus Thames scored on a double by Brandon Inge, who himself scored on a 2-out single by Placido Polanco.
The lone Oakland-run was scored in the eighth inning when Milton Bradley doubled and scored on a grounder by Jay Payton.
The Detroit-defense played very well, with two beautiful catches in left and centerfield.
(October 10)


Yankee-pitcher Cory Lidle dies in place crash
IN MEMORIAM

...Cory Lidle...
(1972 - 2006)
(Photo: MLB)
Nederlands
NEW YORK, New York (USA) - Cory Lidle, righthanded pitcher of the New York Yankees, died on Wednesday-afternoon when his small plane crashed into a 50-story building on the Upper East Side of Manhattan in New York. Lidle was only 34 years old.

Lidle's plane, a Cirrus SR20, took off from Teterboro Airport in New Jersey, but reported fuel problems shortly thereafter. About 15 minutes later, the plane hit the building. It was reported that only one person was on board the plane and it has been confirmed that it was Cory Lidle. The pitcher purchased the place last off-season after obtaining his pilot's license.
Lidle was on his way back home in California after the Yankees were eliminated from the American League Play-Offs. Last Saturday, the Yankees lost 8-3 to the Detroit Tigers in the fourth game of the American League Division Series. As a result, Detroit won the Series 3-1 and went on to the Championship Series. In Saturday's game, Lidle pitched in relief of starter Jaret Wright and threw 1 1/3 inning in his lone Play-Off appearance with the Yankees.
Cory Lidle pitched in the Major League for nine seasons and played for the New York Mets, Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Oakland Athletics, Toronto Blue Jays, Cincinnati Reds and Philadelphia Phillies. On July 30 of this year, he came to the Yankees from the Phillies in a trade. For the Yankees, Lidle pitched in 10 games in the remainder of the season and was 4-3 with a 5.16 ERA. In 2001 and 2002, he played in the Division Series with Oakland.

The incident brought back memories from 1979 when then Yankee team-captain and catcher Thurman Munson died in a private plane crash in Ohio.

,,This is a terrible and shocking tragedy that has stunned the entire Yankee-organization'', Yankee-owner George Steinbrenner said in a statement. ,,Our thoughts are with his wife, son and his family.''
(October 11)


Detroit also wins Game Two in ALCS
Nederlands
OAKLAND, California (USA) - The Detroit Tigers on Wednesday-evening also won Game Two of the American League Championship Series, beating the Oakland Athletics, 8-5. The Series now moves to Detroit for the next three games, starting on Friday.
The opener of the National League Championship Series between the New York Mets and St. Louis Cardinals rained out and will be made up on Thursday-evening.

Detroit trailed 3-1, but then rallied for four runs in the fourth inning to take a decisive lead.
In the first inning, Oakland took a 1-0 lead when Mark Kotsay doubled with one out, moved on a wild pitch and scored on a single by Milton Bradley. Detroit came alongside in the second inning when Carlos Guillen doubled and scored on a sac-fly, but Oakland re-took the lead in the third at bat. With two outs, Mark Kotsay doubled, then Milton Bradley homered.

The lead didn't last long, as Detroit answered with four runs in the fourth inning. First, Placido Polanco and Magglio Ordo˝ez singled, then Ivan Rodriguez walked with one out to load the bases. Craig Monroe then singled in a run and Alexis Gomez followed with a 2-run single to give Detroit a 4-3 lead. Monroe then made it 5-3 by scoring on a sac-fly.
Detroit added two runs in the sixth inning, again with two outs. Craig Monroe then doubled and scored when Alexis Gomez followed with a homerun.

Oakland got two runs back in the sixth and seventh inning, both on a lead-off homerun. In the sixth, Eric Chavez homered and in the seventh Milton Bradley hit his second homerun of the game to make it 7-5.
Detroit added an important extra run in the ninth inning when Curtis Granderson led off with a homerun.
Oakland put some pressure on in the home ninth when closer Todd Jones came on. After he struckout the first two batters, three singles followed to load the bases and bring up Frank Thomas, but the powerhitter popped up into centerfield to end the game.
(October 11)


Mets shutout Cardinals in NLCS-opener
Nederlands
NEW YORK, New York (USA) - The National League Championshiop Series started a day later, because the opener rained out on Wednesday-evening. On Thursday, the New York Mets opened the best-of-seven with a 2-0 shutout win vs. St. Louis Cardinals. Game Two follows on Friday.

On a cloudy and sometimes rainy evening in New York's Shea Stadium, it was a pitching duel between Tom Glavine (Mets) and Jeff Weaver (Cards). The game was scoreless for more than five innings, but New York opened the score in the home sixth and then scored the only two runs of the game.
With two outs, Paul Lo Duca singled, then Carlos Beltran hit a towering homerun over the rightfield wall. Carlos Delgado followed with a double, then next batter David Wright was walked intentionally, after which Weaver was relieved. Glavine threw seven strong scoreless inning in which he gave up only four basehits, the only Card-hits in the game.
(October 12)


Detroit takes 3-0 lead; Cards win
Nederlands
DETROIT / NEW YORK (USA) - The Detroit Tigers are now one win away from reaching the World Series. On Friday-afternoon, the Tigers raised their lead in the American League Championship Series to 3-0 after shutting out the Oakland Athletics, 3-0. Game Four will be on Saturday.
The St. Louis Cardinals evened the National League Championship Series by winning 9-6 vs. the New York Mets.

American League Championship Series
At Detroit (Michigan), on a chilly evening with snow (!) expected, the Tigers handed the A's their third consecutive loss in another fine outing by a pitcher. 40-year old Kenny Rogers again pitched outstanding, just as he did in the Division Series against the New York Yankees. The veteran today threw 7 1/3 inning and gave up only two basehits. Relievers Fernando Rodney and Todd Jones didn't gave up more hits, so the A's only had two in the entire game. Jones earned his second save in a row.
Detroit also had only six hits, but they came at the right moment. In the first inning, lead-off hitter Curtis Granderson walked and after a single by Craig Monroe there were runners on first and third. Placido Polanco then singled in the first run, with the next one being scored on a force play-grounder by Magglio Ordo˝ez.
Detroit added its third run in the fifth, when Craig Monroe led off with a homerun. The game had some fine defensive plays, especially a foul-fly by Detroit third baseman Brandon Inge and two great back-to-back catches by Oakland centerfielder Mark Kotsay.
Oakland-starter Rich Harden didn't pitched as well as he good. He pitched OK with four strikeouts, but also walked five batters and gave up all three runs on five hits.

National League Championship Series
At New York (New York), the game was tied at 4-4 after three innings. The Mets opened with a 3-run first inning. JosÚ Reyes led off with a double and Carlos Beltran walked with one out, then Carlos Delgado hit a 3-run homerun.
The Cardinals came back with two runs in the second inning on basesloaded 2-run double by Yadier Molina, but New York got a run back in the home second when Endy Chavez doubled and scored on a single by JosÚ Reyes.
In the third inning, St. Louis came alongside. With one out, Albert Pujols walked, then Jim Edmonds homered to make it 4-4.
New York regained the lead in the home fifth when Delgado hit his second homerun of the night. The Mets made it a 2-run lead on an RBI-double by Paul Lo Duca in the sixth inning.
That lead didn't last long, as St. Louis tied the score again in the seventh inning when Scott Spiezio hit a 2-run triple. St. Louis Manager Tony La Russa came to argue that it was a homerun, but Rightfield Umpire and Crew Chief Tim Welke made the correct call, as the ball hit the glove of the rightfield, then the top of the wall, before coming back into the field, instead of hitting the space behind the wall. After an umpire conference, the decision was confirmed.
In the ninth inning, St. Louis took the lead for the first time and did it off closer Billy Wagner. First, So Taguchi, who was brought in as a defensive replacement in leftfield in the bottom eighth, led off with a homerun. Next, Albert Pujols doubled and scored on an one-out double by Scott Spiezio, who then scored himself on a single by Juan Encarnacion to make it 9-6.
(October 13)


Detroit in World Series!
Nederlands
DETROIT / ST. LOUIS (USA) - Detroit Tigers came from behind to win 6-3 vs. Oakland Athletics in Saturday-afternoon and complete a 4-game sweep in the American League Championship Series. Detroit now returns to the World Series for the first time since 1984.
In the National League Championship Series, the St. Louis Cardinals took a 2-1 lead vs. New York Mets with a 5-0 shutout-win in the evening.

American League Championship Series
At Detroit (Michigan), Oakland took a 2-0 lead in the first inning on RBI-doubles by Milton Bradley and Eric Chavez, then added a run in the fourth when Jay Payton homered.
But in the fifth inning, Detroit started to come back and scored twice. With Brandon Inge on second base and one out, Curtis Granderson and Craig Monroe hit back-to-back RBI doubles to make it 3-2. Detroit came alongside in the sixth inning when Magglio Ordo˝ez led off with a homerun.
While it appeared that the game had to go into extra innings, Detroit decided it with two outs in the home ninth. Craig Monroe and Placido Polanco then singled and Magglio Ordo˝ez ended the game with a 3-run, walk-off homerun to make it 6-3.

National League Championship Series
At St. Louis (Missouri), the Cardinals struck early, getting a 5-0 lead in the second inning. In the first, Preston Wilson walked with one out and Albert Pujols then singled, after which both scored on a triple by Scott Spiezio.
In the second inning, pitcher Jeff Suppan led off with a homerun, then Mets-starter Steve Trachsel loaded the bases by walking David Eckstein and Albert Pujols and giving up a single to Preston Wilson in between.
Darren Oliver relieved Trachsel, but started with a wild pitch, resulting in a run. A grounder by Jim Edmonds gave the Cards then another run.
Besides hitting a homerun, Suppan also had a great day on the mound, pitching eight shutout innings in which he gave up only three hits.
(October 14)


Mets bring Series in balance again
Nederlands
ST. LOUIS, Missouri (USA) - The New York Mets evened the National League Championship Series at 2-2 on Monday-evening by defeating the St. Louis Cardinals, 12-5. Game Five will be played on Tuesday-evening, after which the Series will be moved back to New York.

National League Championship Series
St. Louis scored the first run in the highscoring game when Yadier Molina delivered an RBI-single in the second inning.
New York then took a 2-1 lead in the third on homeruns by Carlos Beltran (with one out) and David Wright (with two outs), but St. Louis tied the score in the home third on an RBI-triple by Juan Encarnacion.
The Mets broke the 2-2 tie with a 3-run fifth inning. First, Paul Lo Duca reached on an error, then Carlos Beltran singled, followed by a 3-run homerun by Carlos Delgado. The Cards answered with one run in the home fifth on a lead-off homerun by David Eckstein.
New York then broke open the game with a 6-run rally in the sixth inning, increasing the lead to 11-3. They first loaded the bases when JosÚ Reyes and Paul Lo Duca singled, then Carlos Beltran walked. Carlos Delgado then delivered a 2-run double, but the bases were loaded again when David Wright walked. Shawn Green then added an RBI-single, before JosÚ Valentin cleared the bases with a 3-run double.
In the home sixth, St. Louis answered with two runs when Jim Edmonds homered with one out and Yadier Molina did the same with two outs.
In the seventh inning, Carlos Beltran led off with his second homerun of the evening and seventh in the game to make it 12-5.
(October 15)


Cards come from behind for lead
Nederlands
ST. LOUIS, Missouri (USA) - The St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday came from behind against the New York Mets to win Game Five 4-2 and take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven National League Championship Series. The game originally was scheduled for Monday-evening, but then rained out. After tonight's game everyone flew back to New York where Game Six will be played on Wednesday-evening.

National League Championship Series
The Mets took a 2-0 lead in the fourth inning. With one out, Carlos Delgado walked, then with two outs Shawn Green and JosÚ Valentin hit back-to-back doubles to score two runs.
The Cardinals came alongside in the home fourth. With one out, Albert Pujols homered. With two outs, Scott Rolen walked and Jim Edmonds singled, then Ronnie Belliard singled in the tying run.
In the fifth at bat, St. Louis took a 3-2 lead when David Eckstein singled and scored on a double by Preston Wilson. The Cards added a run in the next inning when pinch-hitter Chris Duncan (son of Pitching Coach Dave Duncan) hit a homerun.
The Mets got some scoring opportunities hereafter, but the Cardinals bullpen did a great job in relief of starter Jeff Weaver, who also pitched fine. Mets-starter Tom Glavine didn't pitch as good as in Game One, as he was hit hard tonight.
(October 17)


Mets force seventh game
Nederlands
NEW YORK, New York (USA) - After a nigtlong flight and a few hours of sleep, the New York Mets forced a seventh a deciding game by winning Game Six of the National League Championship Series vs. the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday-evening, 4-2. This will be the fourth consecutive NLCS that needs all seven games. The winner on Thursday-evening will play in the World Series vs. the Detroit Tigers, which starts on Saturday.

National League Championship Series
New York took the lead immediately in the first inning when JosÚ Reyes led off with his first postseason-homerun. In the fourth inning, the Mets doubled their lead. Carlos Beltran led off with a single, then David Wright singled with one out. Beltran scored when next batter Shawn Green also singled.
New York doubled its lead again in the seventh inning by scoring twice. With two outs and a new pitcher on the mound for St. Louis, pinch-hitter Michael Tucker singled, then stole second base. He advanced to third base on a single by JosÚ Reyes, who then also stole second base. The two runners were able to score when Paul Lo Duca followed with a single to make it 4-0.
Rookie pitcher John Maine started for the Mets and had a shaky first inning in which the Cardinals got the bases loaded with two outs, but St. Louis failed to score. Moments later, the Mets turned the game around when Reyes homered. Maine recovered and gave up only two basehits (both in the first inning) in the 5 1/3 inning he threw.
In the ninth inning, the Cardinals did something back when they got two runners on with two outs off closer Billy Wagner. Pinch-hitter So Taguchi then appeared to strikeout, but Home Plate Umpire Gary Darling, who started to raise his arm, ruled it a ball. On the next pitch, Taguchi singled to bring in two runs. But then the game ended on a grounder.
(October 18)


Cardinals in World Series!
Nederlands
NEW YORK, New York (USA) - The St. Louis Cardinals are going to the World Series to face the Detroit Tigers. Game One will be played on Saturday-evening in Detroit. The Cardinals became the second finalist after winning an exciting and spectacular game against the New York Mets, 3-1, to win the National League Championship Series, 4-3. Game Seven of the NLCS wasn't bothered much by some steady rain from the fifth inning and some light fog in the eighth.

National League Championship Series
New York took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Carlos Beltran doubled with two outs. After Carlos Delgado walked, Beltran scored on a single by David Wright.
St. Louis tied the score in the second inning. Jim Edmonds led off with a single, then moved to third base on an one-out single by Yadier Molina. Edmonds then scored the tying run on a safety squeeze by Ronnie Belliard.
The defensive play of the game came in the top of the sixth inning. With one out, Jim Edmonds walked, which brought Mets-Manager Willie Randolph to the mound to take with pitcher Oliver Perez. On the next pitch, Scott Rolen drove the ball into leftfield where Endy Chavez made an outstanding catch with his glove over the wall robbing Rolen of a 2-run homerun. Chavez threw the ball back to second baseman JosÚ Valentin, who got the ball in time to first baseman Carlos Delgado to double up Edmonds and end the inning.
In the home sixth, the Cardinals had a fine inning, especially pitcher Jeff Suppan. With one out, he walked Carlos Delgado, then third baseman Scott Rolen made a throwing error on a grounder by David Wright to put runners on second and third base. Next batter Shawn Green was then walked intentionally to set up a force play. A crucial out followed when Suppan struckout JosÚ Valentin, then the inning ended when Endy Chavez flied out.
The Cardinals took a decisive 3-1 lead in the ninth inning off reliever Aaron Heilman. With one out, Scott Rolen singled, then Yadier Molina homered.

The Mets hit two basehits in the first inning, then were held hitless in the next seven innings. But in the home of the ninth, when closer Adam Wainwright took over the pitching, JosÚ Valentin led off with a single in short rightfield, then Endy Chavez followed with a single in leftfield. But then pinch-hitter Cliff Floyd struckout and JosÚ Reyes flied out. The Mets then loaded the bases when Paul Lo Duca walked to bring up Carlos Beltran. However, the lefthanded powerhitter struckout on a called third strike with the bases loaded to end the game!
This means that the two teams with the best record this season (97-65) are now both out: New York Mets and New York Yankees.
(october 19)


St. Louis opens Series with win
Nederlands
DETROIT, Michigan (USA) - The St. Louis Cardinals opened the World Series on Saturday-evening with a convincingly 7-2 victory over the Detroit Tigers, which didn't play well. Detroit had a week off after sweeping the Oakland A's in the American League Champion Series and appeared to have lost their rhythm. At least in Game One. Besides that, starting pitcher Justin Verlander didn't pitch well.

Detroit took a 1-0 lead in the first inning. With one out, Craig Monroe doubled, then Magglio Ordo˝ez walked with one out. Next, Carlos Guillen singled enabling Monroe to score the run.
The Cardinals came alongside in the second inning when Scott Rolen homered with one out, then took a 4-1 lead by scoring three runs in the next at bat. In the third, Yadier Molina led off with a single, then reached second base on a great hit-and-run play by So Taguchi, who protected the runner by throwing his bat to the ball. After David Eckstein struckout, Chris Duncan doubled to give St. Louis a 2-1 lead. Albert Pujols, last years MVP, then homered to make it 4-1.
Cardinals' rookie starter Anthony Reyes had a shaky start in the first inning, but settled down thereafter. When Sean Casey flied out to end the first inning, Reyes retired 17 batters in a row, before Carlos Guillen singled in the seventh. Guillen also was the last player to reach base in the first inning on a single, before Reyes started his streak.
St. Louis did more damage in the sixth inning. Albert Pujols led off with a walk, then pitcher Justin Verlander (just as Reyes a rookie) made a throwing error on a pick-off, enabling Pujols to reach third base. He then scored when next batter Jim Edmonds singled, followed with a double by Scott Rolen. This marked the end for Verlander, who was relieved by Jason Grilli. Juan Encarnacion then grounded to third baseman Brandon Inge, who made a throwing error towards home where Edmonds scored, then interfered with runner Rolen, who therefore was awarded home plate and also scored to make it 7-1. Then, three outs followed to end the inning.
But Reyes continued his dominance on the mound in his first-ever World Series-appearance and gave the Tigers no chance of coming close to home plate anymore. His dominance ended in the ninth inning. After having retired 22 out of 23 batters, he gave up a lead-off homerun to Craig Monroe in the ninth and was replaced by Braden Looper. However, the Tigers were unable to come back, having only four basehits in the game.
(October 21)


Detroit brings Series in balance
Nederlands
DETROIT, Michigan (USA) - On a cold Sunday-evening, the Detroit Tigers evened the World Series by winning Game Two vs. the St. Louis Cardinals, 3-1, on another brilliant performance by pitcher Kenny Rogers. The Series now shifts to St. Louis for the next three games. Game Three will be played on Tuesday-evening.

Detroit played far better than in the opening game and looked like the team that defeated the New York Yankees and Oakland Athletics in the Play-Offs.
Just as they did in Game One, Detroit opened the score in the first inning and again it was Craig Monroe who scored the first, as he hit a homerun with one out. But this time, the Tigers added an additional run. With two outs, Magglio Ordo˝ez singled, then scored all the way from first base when Carlos Guillen doubled.
Cardinals-starter Jeff Weaver then did some fine pitching and got help from his defense in the next at bats, as Detroit kept on reaching the bases. In the second inning, the Cards turned a double play and in the fourth, Weaver escaped the inning unharmed after Detroit loaded the bases with no outs.
But in the fifth, the Tigers added its third run. With one out, Carlos Guillen tripled down the rightfield-line and scored moments later on a 2-out single by Sean Casey.

On the other side, Detroit-starter Kenny Rogers had another outstanding performance and allowed only two hits!
The 41-year old lefthander dominated and overpowered St. Louis, as he allowed only an infield-hit to Scott Rolen in the first inning, before Yadier Molina led off with a single in the eighth inning. Rogers threw eight scoreless innings to raise his consecutive total to 23 in the postseason, closing in on the all-time record of Christy Mathewson, who pitched 27 consecutive scoreless innings in 1905! Rogers also got some fine help from his defense, which turned a double play in the eighth and had some nice outfield-catches, as well as some great plays by third baseman Brandon Inge.
Closer Todd Jones took over in the ninth inning in which St. Louis brought back some tension, scoring a run and getting the bases loaded. With two outs, Scott Rolen singled, then Juan Encarnacion grounded back to Jones, who made an error. Jim Edmonds then followed with a double on which Edmonds scored. The bases were then loaded when Jones hit next batter Preston Wilson with a pitch, but the game then ended on a force play-grounder by Yadier Molina.
(October 22)


Cardinals take lead with shutout
Nederlands
ST. LOUIS, Missouri (USA) - The St. Louis Cardinals took a 2-1 lead in the World Series with a 5-0 shutout-win in Game Three against the Detroit Tigers. Game Four will be played on Wednesday, weather permitting, as rain is predicted.

In the first three innings, both teams got only one baserunner. For Detroit, Brandon Inge singled with one out in the third at bat, after the first seven hitters were retired in order by starter Chris Carpenter. For St. Louis, Jim Edmonds walked with two outs in the second inning.

But St. Louis then scored twice in the fourth inning. Preston Wilson led off with a single, then moved to third on a ground-rule double by Albert Pujols. The bases were then loaded when Scott Rolen walked. Next, Ronnie Belliard grounded to third baseman Brandon Inge, who forced out Wilson at home, but then Jim Edmonds doubled down the rightfield-line to give the Cards a 2-0 lead.
In the fifth inning, St. Louis had two runners on with two outs, but the inning ended when Ronnie Belliard struckout.

St. Louis-starter Chris Carpenter, the leading candidate for the National League Cy Young Award, continued throwing strongly. After giving up the single to Inge in the third inning, the righthander retired the next seven batters, before Sean Casey singled with two outs in the fifth. Carpenter then again started a streak by retiring the next series of batters and was supported with a nice line drive catch by first baseman Albert Pujols and a sliding catch by Japanese rightfielder So Taguchi, both in the seventh inning. In the same inning, Carpenter had to be treated for some cramps in his throwing arm, but was able to continue throwing.

St. Louis increased the lead to 4-0 in the home seventh. Joel Zumaya, who had entered the game in the previous inning, walked the first two batters in this at bat, David Eckstein and Preston Wilson. Next, Albert Pujols grounded the ball back to Zumaya, but instead of throwing to second base for a possible double play, he opted to throw to third base and made a throwing error with the ball ending up in foul territory in leftfield, resulting in two runs. A grounder and two more after a pitching change ended the inning, but the damage had been done.
The Cardinals added another run in the eighth inning. Reliever Fernando Rodney first walked So Taguchi, who moved on a sac-bunt, then on a single by David Eckstein. The bases were then loaded when Preston Wilson walked. Rodney was then relieved by Zach Miner, who faced Albert Pujols. The powerhitter fouled off a pitch on a delicate spot of catcher Ivan Rodriguez. The next pitch was a wild pitch, enabling Taguchi to score. The next pitch hit Pujols, but then the inning ended with a fine double play.

After giving up the single to Casey in the fifth inning, Chris Carpenter retired eight batters in a row, then gave up a single to Sean Casey again, who became only the third baserunner for Detroit. Carpenter then again was supported by his defense, who turned a double play. Carpenter wasn't given the opportunity to throw the first complete game shutout in the World Series since 2003, as Braden Looper took over and threw a one-two-three ninth inning.
(October 24)


Game Four canceled by rain
Nederlands
ST. LOUIS, Missouri (USA) - Game Four of the World Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and Detroit Tigers has been canceled by rain on Wednesday and is postponed to Thursday-evening. The cancelation came after a delay of more than two hours. However, the weather isn't favorable on Thursday and might even be worse, as a 90 percent chance of rain is predicted.
When Game Four is played, Game Five will be played on Friday. If needed, after completion of that game, everyone will fly back to Detroit right, as Game Six is scheduled for Saturday. St. Louis leads the best-of-seven Series, 2-1.
Scheduled starters for Wednesday were Jeremy Bonderman (Detroit) and Jeff Suppan (St. Louis). It is not known yet if both will also start on Thursday, as there also is a possibility that Justin Verlander might take the mound for the Tigers.
The cancelation is the first in the World Series since Game One of the 1996 Series between the New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves at New York. This is the fourth cancelation in this postseason. During the National League Championship Series, two games rained out between the Cardinals and New York Mets (one on New York and one in St. Louis), while one game of the American League Division Series between the Tigers and New York Yankees rained out in New York.
(October 25)


Cardinals take 3-1 lead
Nederlands
ST. LOUIS, Missouri (USA) - Despite a drizzling, misty rain, Game Four could be played on Thursday-evening, after the game had been postponed by rain the day before. In an exciting game, with some crucial outfield-plays, the St. Louis Cardinals took a 3-1 lead by defeating the Detroit Tigers 5-4 in a come-from-behind victory. The Cards now need only one win to win the World Series, which can come on Friday-evening.

Detroit took charge of the game in the second and third inning, but St. Louis went on to come back later in the game.
After the side had been retired in the first inning, Detroit scored the first run in the second inning when Sean Casey homered with one out. The Tigers added two runs in the next at bat. Curtis Granderson first led off with a double, then Carlos Guillen walked with one out. After a flyout, Sean Casey again provided a runscoring basehit, as his single enabled Granderson to score. Moments later, Guillen scored on the first basehit in the Series by Ivan 'Pudge' Rodriguez.
In the fifth inning, Casey had another single with two outs which brought Guillen to third base, but this time a run wasn't scored.

St. Louis came back with a run in the third inning. With one out, Aaron Miles singled and stole second base, then scored on a 2-out double by David Eckstein, which wasn't played that well by leftfielder Craig Monroe.
The Cardinals narrowed the deficit to 3-2 in the fourth inning. With one out, Scott Rolen doubled, moved on a grounder and scored on a line drive double by Yadier Molina.
In the sixth inning, Rolen led off with another double, but stranded at third base. After he had moved up on a sac-bunt and Molina walked, Detroit-starter Jeremy Bonderman was relieved by Fernando Rodney, who struckout the next two batters to end the inning.

But in the seventh inning, the Cards not only came alongside, but took a 4-3 lead.
David Eckstein led off with his second double of the evening, after centerfielder Curtis Granderson slipped on the wet field and was unable to make a routine catch. So Taguchi was then brought in as a pinch-hitter and bunted the ball back to Rodney, who made a throwing error, enabling Eckstein to score the tying run. This was the fourth error by a Tiger-pitcher in four games. With Taguchi on second base, next batter Albert Pujols was walked intentionally, Rodney struckout the next two batters, but then Preston Wilson singled and Taguchi scored the go-ahead run.

Detroit came back to tie the score immediately. Pudge Rodriguez led off the eighth with a double and went on to score the tying run, after a pitching change, on a double by Brandon Inge.
However, St. Louis also reacted again moments later and made it 5-4. New hardthrowing pitcher Joel Zumaya walked Yadier Molina, who then was forced out on a grounder by Aaron Miles. While Juan Encarnacion struckout, Miles was able to advance on a wild pitch, then scored on the third double in the game by David Eckstein off the glove of leftfielder Craig Monroe, who just was out of reach to catch the ball.
(October 26)


St. Louis Cardinals win World Series!
Nederlands
ST. LOUIS, Missouri (USA) - The St. Louis Cardinals are the new champion. On Friday-evening, they won the World Series, 4-1, by winning Game Five vs. the Detroit Tigers, 4-2. St. Louis is the seventh different team to win the title in the last seven years. With the win, Manager Tony LaRussa became the first manager since 1984 to lead a team to the title from both leagues. This is the tenth title in club-history and first since 1982. With their 83 victories in the regular season, St. Louis became the team with the fewest victories to win a World Series. The Cardinals won the title in the first year they played in the new Busch Stadium. Short stop David Eckstein was voted Most Valuable Player of the Series.

For Detroit, it was a frustrating Series, as they again made some errors, as well as mental errors and baserunning errors and offensively didn't produce again.
The Tigers escaped the first inning unharmed, despite a bad outing by starting pitcher Justin Verlander, who needed 35 pitches in this at bat. With one out, the rookie walked Chris Duncan, then uncorked a wild pitch, before walking Albert Pujols. The two runners then advanced on another wild pitch. Verlander then got some help from Home Plate Umpire John Hirschbeck, as Jim Edmonds also appeared to walk, but a strike was called and moments later Edmonds flied out. Verlander then walked Scott Rolen to load the bases, but the inning ended when Ronnie Belliard was called out on a close call after an outstanding play by short stop Carlos Guillen.
The Cardinals then did score in the next at bat. Yadier Molina led off with a single, moved on a sac-bunt and a grounder and scored on a 2-out single by David Eckstein, which was followed by a throwing error.

Detroit got a runner in scoring position in the third inning. With one out, Brandon Inge doubled, but then made a baserunning mistake trying to move up on a grounder back to pitcher Jeff Weaver and was thrown out. Moments later, a single followed, which could have result in a run.
In the fourth inning, the Tigers took a 2-1 lead. With one out, Magglio Ordo˝ez flied to right-centerfield. Instead of over-calling to make the catch, centerfielder Jim Edmonds let rightfielder Chris Duncan made the catch. Duncan might have been hindered a little by Edmonds, but dropped the ball, enabling Ordo˝ez to reach second base. On the next pitch, Sean Casey homered to make it 2-1.

The Cardinals came back with two runs in the fourth inning. With one out, Yadier Molina again singled, as did So Taguchi. Pitcher Jeff Weaver then bunted the ball back to Detroit-pitcher Justin Verlander, who turned to make a force play at third base, but made a throwing error, the fifth by a pitcher in five games, extending their record. On the error, Molina scored the tying run and Taguchi moved to third base. The Japanese veteran then scored the go-ahead run on a grounder by David Eckstein.

After giving up the homerun in the fourth inning, Cardinal-starter Jeff Weaver, who pitched a strong game, allowed only two batters to reach base in the next four innings and was helped by a great play by first baseman Albert Pujols in the seventh inning. After the homerun, Weaver retired 14 of the next 16 batters, before being relieved by Adam Wainwright in the ninth inning. Detroit-starter Justin Verlander recovered somewhat after the first inning and also after his throwing error, as he retired eight of the nine batters after that, before being relieved by Fernando Rodney in the seventh inning. The hardthrowing righthander gave up an additional run in the seventh inning. The ever passionate playing David Eckstein led off with a grounder to short stop Carlos Guillen, who had a brief stop in his throw to first base, resulting in Eckstein being credited with an infield-hit. Next, Preston Wilson walked. After two flyouts, Eckstein scored on a single by Scott Rolen to make it 4-2.

In the ninth inning, off closer Adam Wainwright, hot-hitting Sean Casey, who already had homered and doubled, hit a double with one out. But then Ivan Rodriguez grounded out on a check-swing for the second out. Placido Polanco, who was hitting 0-for-17, then walked, after a pinch-runner for Casey had advanced to third base on a wild pitch. But the game, the Series and the season ended when Brandon Inge struckout.
(October 27)


International Softball
Fifth game needed in Italian final
Nederlands
CASERTA (Italy) - Fiorini Forlý on Saturday shutout DES Caserta 1-0 in Game Four of the Italian Softball Championship Series to force a fifth and deciding game, to be played on Sunday. In the Play-Offs, also all five games were needed.

The finalists are two surprising teams, as Caserta finished in third place and Forlý in fourth place in the regular season. In the Play-Offs, Caserta faced reigning champion and second placed Sanotint Bollate and dethroned the champs by winning the series, 3-2. Forlý met Fabi Macerata, which finished in first place, and also won their series, 3-2.

In the best-of-five final, Caserta opened last week with a 3-1 win in the first game of a double-header at Forlý, but then was shutout 1-0 in the next game. On Saturday, two more close games followed. Caserta again won the opener, this time 3-2, then Forlý again came back with a 1-0 shutout.
The last game was a pitching duel between Leslie Malerich (Forlý) and Mara Papucci (Caserta). Malerich struckout eight and gave up only two hits. Last week, she also was the winning pitcher in the 1-0 shutout and also threw a 2-hitter then. The lone run in Game Four was scored in the sixth inning when Melissa Sanchez reached on an error by short stop April Cox, then advanced to third base on a double by Christen Bedwell. Next batter Irene Lollio then turned for a bunt and Sanchez broke from third. However, there was no bunt but Sanchez scored when the catcher made a throwing error. Moments later, Lollio did squeeze with Bedwell on third, but the latter was thrown out at home.

Dutch pitcher Rebecca Soumeru this season played for Macerata and finished the season with an 8-4 record and an 0.74 ERA. She appeared in 12 games, pitching in 84 2/3 inning and struckout 95 batters. She currently is on the roster of Sparks Haarlem in the Dutch Holland Series.
Dutch utility player Sandra Gouverneur also played in Italy this season. Playing for Terra Sarda Nuoro on the isle of Sardinia, she appeared in 32 games and batted .293 with two homeruns and 14 RBI's. Sandra also currently participates in the Holland Series, playing for A4 Terrasvogels.
(October 7)


Forlý grabs Italian softball-title
Nederlands
CASERTA (Italy) - Fiorini Forlý came back twice after losing the first game of a double-header vs. DES Caserta in the Italian championship, then won Game Five on Sunday, 3-1, to win the Italian Series 3-2 and claim the Italian title. This is the second title for the club and its first since 2002.

Caserta, which never won the title, opened the score in the first inning when lead-off batter Lena Merzliakov scored on a double by Francesca Francolini, but this was to be their lone run in the game.
Forlý came alongside in the third inning. In that at bat, AnnaLisa Turci singled, then advanced to third base when an error was made on a bunt by Eva Trevisan. Moments later, Turci scored the tying run on a single by Melissa Sanchez.
In the fifth inning, Forlý took a 2-1 lead when Venezuelan Melissa Sanchez hit a homerun. The team then added an insurance run in the sixth inning. With Stefania Vitaliani on third base and two outs, Leslie Malerich hit an RBI-single.
As pitcher, Leslie Malerich struckout nine batters, gave up only four hits, won her third game and was named Most Valuable Player of the Series.
In the home seventh, Lacee LePrey led off with a double for Caserta, but Malerich then struckout the next batter, before a grounder by Michela Vitaliana ended the game.
(October 8)


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