PGCBL Daily Rundown - July 23, 2013

The Amsterdam Mohawks celebrate a recent win over the Watertown Rams. Amsterdam moved into first place in the PGCBL East on Monday night. Photo courtesy Amsterdam Mohawks/Jon Sargelis

For all of the latest news stories on the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League and television highlights, go to our “Press” page here.

Note: Individual game box scores can be found linked on the scoreboard page which is part of the “Statistics” drop-down menu. The box scores are also linked on the statistics page for each team.

Last Night’s Scores
Newark 9 Cooperstown 6 (7)
Mohawk Valley 3 Glens Falls 1
Amsterdam 13 Albany 9

Tonight’s Games

Elmira at Watertown (DH), 5:00 PM
Adirondack at Utica, 7:00 PM

*Including today, there are nine days remaining in the 2013 PGCBL regular season. The final day of the regular season is one week from tomorrow.

*If the playoffs began today…East 1) Amsterdam, bye; 3) Glens Falls at 2) Mohawk Valley…West 1) Watertown, bye; 3) Newark at 2) Elmira. The playoffs begin on Friday, August 2.

*Regular season games played-regular season games remaining…Adirondack (40-8), Albany (39-9), Amsterdam (40-8), Cooperstown (37-7), Elmira (37-10), Glens Falls (39-9), Mohawk Valley (37-8), Newark (40-8), Utica (34-10), Watertown (39-9).

*A correction to yesterday’s notebook. Yesterday, I mentioned that the Glens Falls Golden Eagles were ranked 26th in the latest Perfect Game Summer Top 30 poll. That is incorrect – I misread the file attachment from Perfect Game. The Golden Eagles are ranked 25th in the newest edition of the Summer Top 30, up one spot from 26. The Amsterdam Mohawks, Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs and Watertown Rams were among the teams also receiving consideration. The full poll is posted here.

*Amsterdam’s comeback victory combined with Mohawk Valley’s late-game surge at Glens Falls created some movement the standings in the PGCBL East. Yesterday, Glens Falls entered the day in first with Amsterdam in second and Mohawk Valley and Albany tied for third. Amsterdam’s win over Albany vaulted the Mohawks into sole possession of first place. Mohawk Valley’s defeat of Glens Falls pushed the DiamondDawgs into second place and dropped the Golden Eagles into third based on winning percentage though both Mohawk Valley and Glens Falls are a half-game back of Amsterdam. That said, less than two games in the standings separate first-place Amsterdam from fourth-place Albany with just over a week left in the season.

*The Amsterdam Mohawks began the month tied for fourth place in the PGCBL East. The defending league champions are in first place for the first time since the end of the 2012 regular season. Amsterdam is 19-7 since opening the season with a 5-9 record.

*#FunWithNumbers – Amsterdam leads the league in two-out hitting with a .287 team batting average. Amsterdam’s Kyle Barrett (Kentucky) has a .483 batting average when hitting with two outs.

*Two-Out Batting Average, By Team…Amsterdam (.287), Newark (.281), Albany (.255), Watertown (.253), Utica (.248), Adirondack (.246), Cooperstown (.244), Elmira (.238), Glens Falls (.232), Mohawk Valley (.231).

*Amsterdam’s Josh Gardiner (Radford) is the hottest hitter in the league right now. Over his last four games, all Amsterdam wins, Gardiner is batting .786 (11-for-14) with 10 runs scored, 10 RBI, four doubles, one triple, one home run, three walks and two hit-by-pitch. Gardiner has eight RBI in his last two games against the Adirondack Trail Blazers and Albany Dutchmen.

*For the second day in a row, a PGCBL East team came back from a 7-0 deficit. Sunday, Albany allowed seven third-inning runs to Glens Falls but rallied from down 7-0 to pull out a 10-9 win. Monday night, the Dutchmen scored seven times in the first inning at Amsterdam. The Mohawks, like the Dutchmen the day before, battled back from the seven-run deficit and pulled out a 13-9 victory. Both games featured 9-9 ties.

*Amsterdam went from being down 7-0 in the first inning against Albany to winning the game in come-from-behind fashion to move into first place in the PGCBL East for the first time this season.

*While the Amsterdam offense came to life against Albany, the Tribe bullpen shut down the Dutchmen. Relievers Chris Kalica (Schenectady County C.C.), Zach Quayle (Ave Maria) and Mike Urbanski (Binghamton) combined to allow one Albany run over the final six innings. The Tribe trio retired 18 of the final 20 Albany batters between the fourth and ninth innings. Kalica conceded a home run to Derrick Armstrong (Mississippi State) but managed to sit six of seven batters over two innings. Quayle retired eight of the nine men he faced, allowing just a two-out single Bradley Noland (North Alabama) in the seventh. Urbanski continued his home dominance at Shuttleworth Park by seating four men in a row in a non-save situation to end the game.

*Josh Gardiner (Radford) provided the biggest hit of the game for Amsterdam on Monday night. Albany’s Derrick Armstrong (Mississippi State) slugged a solo home run in the top of the fourth to give the Dutchmen a 9-6 lead. Gardiner tied the game in the bottom half of the inning with one swing of the bat. The Radford second baseman clobbed a two-out, three-run home run over the Chain Monster to tie the game at 9-9 which completed Amsterdam’s comeback from down 7-0.

*Amsterdam has scored 41 runs on 48 hits in its last four games; that includes 27 runs on 33 hits combined in back-to-back wins over Adirondack and Albany in which the Mohawks have scored 14 and 13 runs respectively. 

*While Albany and Amsterdam were lighting up the scoreboard at Shuttleworth Park, the squeeze was on at East Field in Glens Falls. Both Mohawk Valley and Glens Falls executed successful safety squeeze plays. The Golden Eagles squeezed the Dawgs in the fifth. Bryan Ramirez (UTPA) bunted home Jesse Jenner (Grossmont) to tie the game at 1-1. Mohawk Valley returned the favor with a safety squeeze play in the seventh to break the tie. Former Golden Eagle Casey Rodrigue (LSU Eunice) beat home the throw on a two-strike safety squeeze bunt by Sam Dexter (Southern Maine) to give the DiamondDawgs a 2-1 lead. Another Dexter bunt in the ninth that was fielded and thrown away which allowed Rodrigue to score a second time.

*The first six innings of the Glens Falls-Mohawk Valley showdown featured a pitchers’ duel between Gavin Culpepper (Southeastern Louisiana) of the DiamondDawgs and Ryan Davis (LeMoyne) of the Golden Eagles. Davis allowed one run on three hits, walked two and struck out four. He allowed a single run in the fourth inning on a Trey Hunt (Point Loma Nazarene) RBI double. Culpepper, who spun a three-hitter over 7.1 innings in his last start, pitched a four-hitter over seven innings. He walked four and struck out four.

*Jared Dye (ULM) is a starting pitcher for the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs. Monday night, Dye came out of the bullpen against Glens Falls in the eighth inning. Dye, a former PGCBL Pitcher of the Week, retired six of the seven batters he faced to earn his first save. The Calhoun, La., native has conceded just nine hits in his last three appearances. He struck out 13 in a seven-inning complete game win over Albany on July 14. This past Friday, he authored a three-hitter in a seven-inning complete game win at Utica and struck out eight.

*Under head coach Roberto Vaz, the DiamondDawgs have won 27 games during the month of July over the last two seasons. Mohawk Valley is currently 12-4 this month. The Dawgs won 15 July games last year en route to the PGCBL playoffs.

*The Newark Pilots pulled level with Adirondack in their chase for the final playoff spot in the PGCBL West with Monday’s win at Doubleday Field. Newark and Adirondack both have identical 16-23 records. Should the two teams tie for third place, Newark would advance to the playoffs based on a head-to-head tiebreaker in the season series. The Pilots have won three out of five completed games from the Trail Blazers.

*Newark and Cooperstown combined to score seven runs in the seventh and final inning of their game on Monday at Doubleday Field. With rain falling in Cooperstown, the Pilots pushed across five runs in the top half of the inning to take a 9-4 lead. The Hawkeyes rallied to score two runs in the bottom of the seventh but left the potential tying run on base to end the game. The contest was called after seven innings due to steady rain and lightning.

*The most pressure-packed situation of Monday’s Newark-Cooperstown game came in the bottom of the seventh inning for Newark closer Donald Frew (Young Harris). Frew replaced Joe Pokrentowski (Siena) on the mound with two outs and the bases loaded in a 9-6 game. The runner at first base represented the potential tying run. Frew, the league’s leader in saves, induced a pop out to first baseman Max Rosing (Cortland State) to end the game. He needed faced just one batter and recorded one out to post his seventh save. Frew is bidding to become the second Pilot to lead the league in saves at the conclusion of the season. Mark Scott paced all PGCBL pitchers with 11 saves in 2011; that number still stands as the league record.

*Newark’s Scott Matthews (Washington, Md.) scored twice in a 2-1 win over Cooperstown in 11 innings on July 6. Monday evening, Matthews recorded three runs in a 9-6 victory for the Pilots. In two starts at Doubleday Field this season, Matthews has scored five runs. Meanwhile, David Vandercook (Columbia) of the Pilots has hit two of his four home runs at Doubleday – Vandercook belted a two-run clout in the decisive seventh inning on Monday and hit a solo home run for the Pilots in a 10-7 loss at Cooperstown on June 16.

*Cooperstown’s Nate Lotze (Kenyon) recorded his second four-hit game in three days on Monday against Newark. Lotze went 4-for-4 against the Pilots. Saturday night, Lotze had four hits in five at-bats in a loss at Watertown. The rising senior from NCAA Division III Kenyon College is third in the league in batting average (.382) and tied for third in hits (50).

*Utica's Michael Pierson (Appalachian State) and Cooperstown's Nate Lotze (Kenyon) are safe for now. Josh Ludwig (Rochester) of the Pilots went 0-for-1 with a walk and a hit-by-pitch on Monday to end his 15-game hitting streak. Pierson and Lotze hold the PGCBL's season high this summer for a hitting streak; each recorded a hitting streak of 17 games.

Did you know? One fact about a random PGCBL player each day…
*Albany’s Charles Parslow (Hudson Valley C.C.) pitched a five-inning perfect game during the spring against Jefferson Community College. Parslow, a freshman, struck out six and retired all 15 batters he faced in a game that was called after five innings due to the mercy rule.

Quick hits on tonight’s games…
*All five PGCBL East teams are off today after competing on Monday. This second-to-last Tuesday of the regular season shines the spotlight on four teams in the PGCBL West.

*The top two teams in the division, Watertown and Elmira, meet for a pivotal doubleheader at Watertown’s Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds. The first-place Rams have a 3.0-game lead on second-place Elmira with just over one week to play. Elmira’s advantage over co-third place teams Newark and Adirondack is also 3.0 games. Watertown is just a few wins and/or a few Newark/Adirondack/Utica losses away from clinching a playoff spot. The season series between the two teams is tied at two wins apiece; all four games in the series have been played at Elmira’s Dunn Field. Due to rain outs and re-scheduling, the Pioneers are making their first and only trip up to Watertown this season. The two teams are not scheduled to meet again in the regular season. The Rams own the best home record (12-4) in the league but are coming off a shutout loss to Newark on Sunday. The shutout loss was the first for the Rams in nearly a month. Elmira swept both ends of a non-traditional doubleheader with Cooperstown on Sunday to pull above .500 (19-18). The Pioneers have been two games over .500 just once since starting the season 4-1. Elmira and Watertown split a doubleheader at Dunn Field on July 6, the last time the two teams played. Chris Kalousdian (Manhattan) gave Elmira a walk-off win in the opener and then the Rams doubled up the Pios in the night cap.

*The Utica Brewers and the Adirondack Trail Blazers resume their PGCBL West rivalry tonight at Utica’s Donovan Stadium. Both teams are in their first year in the league and have already had some memorable games including a high-scoring 18-15 win for Adirondack on June 12 which saw the Trail Blazers come back from a 13-0 deficit. So far, the season series between the Blazers and Brewers has been a dead heat – each team has won three games. Utica is undefeated (2-0) at home against Adirondack this season  while the Trail Blazers have a 3-1 record against their Route 12 rivals at the Smith Sports Complex. Utica’s Ryan Valdes (Florida State) spoiled Adirondack’s last trip the Renaissance City with a walk-off single in the bottom of the ninth that gave the Sons of Saranac a 3-2 victory. Earlier this season at Donovan Stadium, Hunter McIntosh (Alabama State) struck out 12 for the Brewers in a foggy 6-0 shutout win over the Blazers. With Newark idle, Adirondack can reclaim sole possession of third place with a win. A Utica victory would pull the Brewers to within one game of the final playoff spot in the West.

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