PGCBL Daily Rundown - July 29, 2013

L-R: Stitches (Elmira), Ace (Newark), Brewster the Brewer (Utica) and Mojo the Mohawk (Amsterdam) all attended the 2013 PGCBL All-Star Game. Photo courtesy Amsterdam Mohawks

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
Utica 8 Elmira 1 (Game 1)
Elmira at Utica (Game 2)

Tonight’s Games
Glens Falls at Newark (DH), 5:05 PM
Watertown at Adirondack, 7:00 PM
Cooperstown at Albany, 7:05 PM
Mohawk Valley at Amsterdam, 7:05 PM

*Including today, there are three days remaining in the 2013 PGCBL regular season. The final day of the regular season is Wednesday, July 31.

*If the playoffs started today… East 1) Amsterdam, bye; 3) Albany at 2) Mohawk Valley…West 1) Watertown, bye; 3) Newark at 2) Elmira. The 2013 PGCBL playoffs are scheduled to begin on August 1.

*Games played-games remaining…Adirondack (45-3), Albany (43-5), Amsterdam (45-3), Cooperstown (41-3), Elmira (44-3), Glens Falls (43-5), Mohawk Valley (41-4), Newark (44-4), Utica (42-2), Watertown (44-4).

*Watertown became the first team to clinch a regular season division championship last night when Elmira lost the opening game of its doubleheader at Utica. The Rams are guaranteed a spot in the division finals and they will host Games 1 and 3 against Elmira, Newark or Utica. The regular season division title is the first for the Watertown franchise in 14 years of existence.

*Regarding the playoffs, here’s what we know right now. In the West, Watertown is locked in to the top spot and Elmira will be playing an opening round game on Thursday night against either Newark or Utica at a site to be determined. Newark needs just one win or one Utica loss to clinch the final playoff spot in the West; the Pilots and Brewers meet on Tuesday night in Utica however if the Pilots split tonight against Glens Falls, that would punch Newark’s ticket to the playoffs. In the East, Amsterdam is the only team that has wrapped up a playoff spot. The Mohawks need just one more win or one more Mohawk Valley loss to clinch the division championship. Amsterdam and Mohawk Valley play tonight at Shuttleworth Park. Mohawk Valley, Albany and Glens Falls are all fighting for the two remaining playoff spots. Glens Falls is currently on the outside looking in but the Golden Eagles have the lead over Albany in a game from July 6 that will be completed on the final day of the regular season at East Field. We’ll know more later tonight.

*Congratulations to this week’s four award winners – Co-Players of the Week Josh Gardiner (Radford) and Ed Charlton of the Amsterdam Mohawks and Co-Pitchers of the Week Rich Vrana (Marist) of the Amsterdam Mohawks and Colton Kibler (Garden City C.C.) of the Cooperstown Hawkeyes.

*The Amsterdam Mohawks are ranked 22nd in Perfect Game's latest Summer Top 30 poll. The Mohawks now have been nationally ranked at least once in each of the last four seasons. Last summer, the league champion Mohawks were listed as high as second in the national poll. The Glens Falls Golden Eagles and Watertown Rams were also under consideration for this week's Summer Top 30. Full poll here.

*Records from last week…Amsterdam (5-0), Cooperstown (4-1), Newark (4-1), Mohawk Valley (3-2), Watertown (3-2), Utica (4-3), Albany (2-3), Elmira (2-5), Adirondack (0-5), Glens Falls (0-5).

*One of the reasons Amsterdam went undefeated last week – the Mohawks posted a blistering .414 batting average while opponents against Amsterdam pitching managed a meager .178 batting average.

*Eight of nine Watertown relief pitchers last week recorded at least one inning pitched and a 0.00 earned run average. As a whole, the Watertown pitching staff compiled a 2.61 team ERA.

*Six Newark regulars recorded a batting average of .350 or higher. Mike Armstrong’s Pilots batted .354 over seven games last week. Steve Laurino (Marist) and Sam Fox (Pomona-Pitzer) each had 10 hits; Laurino led all Newark hitters with a .526 batting average.

*Cooperstown played five games last week. The Hawkeyes used a total of six pitchers in those games. Four pitchers threw a seven-inning complete game. Cooperstown’s team ERA was 2.83.

*Two runners up in the Pitcher of the Week category were Mohawk Valley’s Gavin Culpepper (Southeastern Louisiana) and Utica’s Eric Brothers (Sioux Falls). Both made two starts in last week’s games. Culpepper went 1-0 with a 1.84 earned run average in 14.2 innings pitched. He allowed three runs on eight hits, walked seven and struck out six. Opponents batted .163 against the 6-foot-8 Culpepper. The Belle Chase, La., native earned a road win over Glens Falls in a 3-1 triumph and then took a no decision Saturday night at Albany. He pitched into the eighth inning in each game. Brothers, who threw a no-hitter earlier this year, was 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA in 12.0 innings. He struck out 10, walked two and allowed three runs on 12 hits. Brothers earned home victories over Adirondack and Elmira.

*Albany’s Dylan Collett (Keene State) went the distance in a seven-inning complete game shutout against Utica on Thursday night while Michael DeCarlo (Herkimer County C.C.) spun a two-hit shutout over seven innings in a home win versus Adirondack on Friday. Collett scattered five hits, walked one and struck out six in a 4-0 victory. His complete game shutout was the first by an Albany pitcher in two years. He logged a 1.00 ERA for the week and struck out nine batters in nine innings pitched. DeCarlo scattered two hits, walked two and struck out seven to best Adirondack. He did not allow a hit between the second and sixth innings and faced just five batters over the minimum in a 14-0 win.

*Amsterdam’s Trey Wingenter (Auburn) also compiled a solid start in a win at Elmira on Thursday night. He pitched a two-hitter over six innings, walked one and struck out seven. At one point, the former catcher turned pitcher retired 14 Elmira batters in a row.

*Newark’s Donald Frew (Young Harris) was the top relief pitcher last week. Frew pitched in three games and converted three saves for the Pilots. The league leader in saves worked 2.1 shutout innings and allowed two hits. He walked one and struck out two. In addition, Frew pitched one scoreless stanza in the PGCBL All-Star Game on Wednesday night.

*Another top relief performance came from Amsterdam's Chris Kalica (St. John’s 2013-14). Kalica pitched in four games for the Mohawks. He was 1-0 with a 1.69 earned run average. Kalica struck out five batters in 5.1 innings pitched and was charged with just one run on one hit.

*Offensively, co-Players of the Week Josh Gardiner (Radford) and Ed Charlton (NJIT) led the league in RBI; the pair combined to drive in 17 runs for the Mohawks. Former PGCBL Player of the Week Dalton Herrington (ULM) of Mohawk Valley plated eight runs. Albany’s Bradley Noland (North Alabama), Amsterdam’s John Nogowski (Florida State), Utica’s Joe Gallub (Concordia, N.Y.) and Newark’s Sam Fox (Pomona-Pitzer) all had six RBI.

*Utica’s Joe Gallub (Concordia, N.Y.) had a strong week at the plate. Gallub, playing in a Utica line-up with three All-Star Game starters, batted .440 (11-for-20) last week with six RBI, five runs scored, two doubles and a .520 slugging percentage. Sunday night, Gallub scored three runs, drove in two runs and smacked three hits in an 8-1 win over Elmira. His two-out single in the fifth inning of Sunday’s’ night cap sparked Utica’s go-ahead rally.

*Amsterdam’s Brian Ruby (Binghamton) scored seven runs last week. Elmira’s Chris Knott (East Stroudsburg), Mohawk Valley’s Jordan Serena (Columbia), Newark’s Max Rosing (Cortland State) and Steve Laurino (Marist), Utica’s Jay Gonzalez (Auburn) and Watertown’s Joe Moroney (Kansas) and Bobby Indeglia (Holy Cross) all scored six runs.

*Watertown’s Riley Smith (Occidental) was one of the top fielding infielders last week in the PGCBL. Smith, a rising senior from the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, compiled a 1.000 fielding percentage in 33 total defensive chances. The Oxy product is a second baseman for the Rams.

*Nationally-ranked Amsterdam leads the league in batting average (.301), runs scored (295), hits (448), doubles (86) and pitching strikeouts (363). Amsterdam’s 33 home runs are tied for first in the league with Adirondack.

*Roberto Vaz’s Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs have already broken the league record for stolen bases in a single season. Through 41 games, the Dawgs have stolen 115 bases on 146 attempts. Dalton Herrington (ULM) leads the league in stolen bases (32) and stolen base attempts (39). Casey Rodrigue (LSU Eunice), Jordan Serena (Columbia) and Landon Thibodeaux (LSU Eunice) all have at least 16 stolen bases. Mohawk Valley set a league record last year with 103 stolen bases.

*The biggest difference on the base paths for Mohawk Valley is the number of stolen bases that the team has allowed. Last year, the DiamondDawgs conceded 105 stolen bases. This season, opponents have been able to steal just 48 bases on 67 attempts. Catchers Mike Fischer (Columbia) and Craig Lepre (Albany) have combined to throw out 19 runners attempting to steal. Lepre also has three pick-offs.

Did you know? One fact about a random PGCBL player each day…

*Elmira’s Chris Kalousdian (Manhattan) is on pace to record an over .300 batting average for the third-straight summer, The Kings Park, N.Y., native spent the 2011 and 2012 seasons in the Atlantic Collegiate Baseball League with the Long Island Collegians (2011) and New York Atlantics (2012). Chris batted .301 for Long Island in 2011 and compiled 25 hits in 26 games played. Last summer, the Manhattan Jasper outfielder hit .320 for the New York Atlantics. He clubbed out 30 hits in 27 games, batted in 21 runs and scored 20.

Quick hits on tonight’s games…
*The chase for the playoffs continues tonight at Newark’s Colburn Park where the Newark Pilots host the Glens Falls Golden Eagles in a doubleheader that will have strong playoff implications. Newark enters into today in third place in the PGCBL West, the Pilots need just one more win or one Utica loss to clinch a playoff spot. Newark can also finish as high as second in the division if it wins out and Elmira stumbles on Tuesday and Wednesday. Glens Falls buses into Newark in fourth place in the PGCBL East, one game behind third-place Albany and with five games left in three days – that includes doubleheaders with Newark and Albany. Second-place Mohawk Valley and fourth-place Glens Falls are separated by just two games. The Pilots surged to a 4-1 record last week to secure a hold on third place in the West while Glens Falls went 0-5 and dropped home doubleheaders to Cooperstown and Amsterdam. The season series between the Pilots and Golden Eagles is tied at one win apiece. Glens Falls has not been at Newark’s Colburn Park since the PGCBL playoffs last year.

*The PGCBL East regular season division championship can be clinched tonight in the Rug City as the Amsterdam Mohawks host the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs. Amsterdam’s magic number to clinch the division title over second-place Mohawk Valley is one. The DiamondDawgs are still alive for the division title however Mohawk Valley has to win out and hope that Amsterdam does not win another game. The playoff-bound Mohawks are on an eight-game winning streak. The Tribe is 12-1 in its last 13 regularly-scheduled games. Mohawk Valley has won 14 games this month. The DiamondDawgs are 14-6 in July and have lost back-to-back games just once this month as part of a home-and-home with Glens Falls.  Despite a loss at Albany on Saturday night, the Dawgs lead the third-place Dutchmen by one game in the PGCBL East standings. Amsterdam leads the season series, 4-2. The two teams have not played since Amsterdam pulled out a 2-1 decision in 10 innings on July 16 at Veterans Memorial Park. Two of the last three  Amsterdam-MV games have been decided by one run. 

*The Albany Dutchmen are right smack dab in the middle of the playoff chase in the PGCBL East. The Dutchmen return home to Bob Bellizzi Field tonight looking to improve their postseason hopes with a game against the Cooperstown Hawkeyes. Albany trails second-place Mohawk Valley by just one game but has a one-game lead on Glens Falls. However, the Dutchmen close out the regular season on the road with parts of four games on the final two days before the playoffs. Albany has a doubleheader at Watertown on Tuesday and then plays a non-traditional doubleheader on Wednesday at Glens Falls. Tonight is Albany’s final home game at Bob Bellizzi Field; home sweet home for the Dutch. At home, Albany has won a five games on walk-off hits and has compiled a 14-9 record. Cooperstown has played the role of spoiler already – the Hawkeyes dampened the playoff chances of Glens Falls with a twin bill sweep at East Field last Thursday and then Cooperstown knocked Adirondack out of the playoff race with a sweep in Boonville on Saturday. The Hawkeyes are 4-0 on their current road trip due to Hall of Fame Induction Weekend ceremonies. Albany leads the season series with Cooperstown, 3-2. The two teams have not played since a doubleheader on July 2 at Bob Bellizzi Field. That night, the Dutchmen and Hawkeyes split.

*Rounding out a look at tonight’s schedule, PGCBL West champion Watertown heads south down Route 12 to tangle with North Country rival Adirondack. While the Rams have locked up the division championship, home-field advantage throughout the playoffs is still on the line. The Rams trail the Amsterdam Mohawks by 2.5 games for the best record in the league. Adirondack closes out its home schedule tonight – the Trail Blazers will play at Amsterdam on Tuesday and then Elmira on Wednesday. Adirondack has averaged around six runs per game at the Smith Sports Complex this season. The Rams lead the season series, 7-2. However, the last two games in the series, both at the Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds in Watertown, have been nip-and-tuck affairs, with Watertown prevailing 4-3 in 14 innings and 3-1. Both of Adirondack’s win in the series have come at the Smith Sports Complex. 

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