The playoffs are just two weeks away, and this special return of baseball to Boyle Park in 2021 has provided all the regular season thrills a ball fan could ask for. The Majors standings are led by the 9-1 White Sox, but the Giants and A’s are hot on their tails at 8-2. The Minors standings are a remarkable horse race, with four Mill Valley teams knotted at 5-4 — the Tigers, Pirates, Giants and Diamondbacks, portending a highly-competitive post-season. And in Minors AAA, the Grays continue to pace the field at 9-1, with the KC Monarchs riding an 8-game streak to an 8-2 mark, and the 7-2-1 Twins right there, too.
To the action:
White Sox 8, Sausalito 4 — The Majors leaders had a fight on their hands at Knudsen Field, trailing 4-3 after one inning. From there, though, pitchers Dylan Murphy, JT Cochrane and Henry Edwards pitched shutout ball, while the bats came through — Cochrane and Edwards each had multi-hit games, and Alex Moore and Henry Tuttle each drove in two. The Pale Hose also received key doubles from Will Gracey and Benicio Suh to aid the victory.
Giants 7, Tigers 6 — A tight game went the Giants’ way late, as pitchers James Root and Conrad Zirkle did the job on the mound, each striking out six. For the Tigers, Keegan Heidenreich and Theo Adam each had two hits. Asa Abedin hit an inside-the-park home run for the Giants.
A’s 9, Brewers 1 — Sean Miller went 4-for-4 and scored three runs, Anthony Murphy doubled and drove in four, while Braydon Balinski, Ryder Weber and Justin Merlin each had two hits for the winners. Finn Reilly tripled for the A’s, who rode the arms of Weber, Miller and Carson Farmer. For the Brewers, Dane Migliori doubled. Defensive gems included a running catch in left field by the Brewers’ Jack Maher and A’s catcher Murphy extinguishing a runner at second on a steal attempt.
Yankees 10 Red Sox 0 — Henry Bennett of the Yankees and Jacob Razon of the Red Sox each pitched to start the game, and the Yanks only led, 1-0, going into the fourth inning. The Yankees then came alive, with Bennett smashing a bases-loaded triple and Brayden Clifford collecting two hits and three RBIs. The Yankees also enjoyed offensive contributions from Evan Rechner and Raymond Cao, and Charley Blumberg scored three runs. Alex Radics and Colton Zinn battled to get out of jams and complete the shutout. William Wiatrak had a hit and a walk for the Red Sox.
Brewers 4, Giants 3 —A thrilling win for the Brewers was capped when Ethan Camposano scored on a wild play — he was a baserunner on first when Connor Grant hit a chopper to first. The first baseman fielded it, stepped on first an out, then threw to second for a tag play, only to see the ball bounce off Camposano’s helmet and spring it into the outfield, freeing Camposano for a thrill ride of a sprint all the way home, just beating the throw home for the win. Camposano had two hits and scored twice. Bradley Marshall struck out four in two scoreless innings for the Brew Crew. For the Giants, Dane Migliori threw two scoreless innings and smacked an RBI double.
White Sox 3, Red Sox 2 (7 innings) — The White Sox stayed in first place with an extra-inning win, when JT Cochrane doubled, and scored on a Ben Richardson RBI. The Pale Hose still needed to close it out, and did so on a fly ball double play in the bottom of the 7th. For the winners, Henry Edwards pitched the final three innings, and key hits came from Will Zuercher, Cochrane and Ben Richardson. Catcher Brody Perkins also aided the cause with a tag at the plate to finish a double play.
A’s 13, Yankees 10 — Carson Farmer hit a home run over the center field fence, and added a ground rule double as part of a three-hit, five RBI day to pace the A’s. Farmer also did it on the mound, closing out the tight game. The A’s also enjoyed a pair of triples from Justin Merlin, and a double from Ryder Weber as part of a two-hit day. For the Yankees, Brayden Clifford and Evan Rechner each doubled, while Clifford and Colton Zinn each pitched well.
Tigers 10, Sausalito Pirates 0 — Asa Abedin had three hits and six RBIs, and struck out six in 2 1/3 innings to lead the Tigers. Ever Epsha also struck out four in 1 2/3 innings.
Yankees 10 Brewers 4 — Brayden Clifford hit a home run as part of a 3-for-3 day, while teammate Charley Blumberg smacked two doubles as part of his 3-for-3 game to lead the Yankees. Alex Radics contributed two hits, while Henry Bennett threw three scoreless innings and Colton Zinn slithered out of a bases-loaded jam. For the Brewers, Dane Migliori hit a double and Felix Jacobs scored two runs.
Tigers 8, Giants 6: The Tigers enjoyed good gloves and a 10-hit attack led by Hawken Brier, Tianu Koss, and Miles Coley, who had two hits each. Kevin Boswell and Koss combined to retire the last six consecutive Giants batters, striking out four. Max Castellano, Adam Mortimer and Mose Merrick each had a hit for the Giants.
Pirates 9, TPLL Tigers 6 — The Pirates bats were led by Liam Winn (two doubles and an RBI), Niki Welter (single, double, two RBIs), Nate Lee (two hits, three RBIs) and Tenzin Mak, who drove in two. Cedra Crews stole three bags and smoked a single. The game was highlighted by Welter nabbing an infield bloop on a diving catch, doubling off a runner at first, then throwing to second to double off another runner — a triple play.
D-Backs 9, Rockies 2 — Kevin Thacher struck out six in two innings to lead the Snakes’ pitching effort, as D-Backs arms put up zeroes in five of six innings.
Rockies 12, Nationals 8 — Griffin Newby, Sammy Marcus, Nolan Ward and James Walston combined to strike out 12 Nationals, while Pierce Brandt smashed a clutch, two-run extra-base hit and Donal Ganderton drove in three for the Rockies. For the Nationals, Miller Weir struck out five and Cillian Flahive hit a bases-loaded triple.
Pirates 10, TP Orioles 5 — Niki Welter and Nate Lee each had two-hit days and combined to drive in five runs for the Bucs, while on the mound, Lee, Welter and Liam Winn combined to strike out nine. Odin Pudelka stole multiple bases, including home, for the winners. Welter, Tenzin Mak and William Palmer earned plaudits for defensive gems.
Diamondbacks 16, Tigers 10 —Trip Goldmacher, Ty Cerne and Luke Kneafsey each had three hits to lead the winners. For the Tigers, Tianu Koss had a two-hit game and a stellar catch at short.
Tigers 11, TP Orioles 1: Bode Van Pelt, Ethan Cann, and Kevin Boswell combined to shut down the Orioles on a two-hitter, and struck out eight. Hawken Brier went 3-for-3 with two doubles and a triple, and rove in four, while Boswell went 2-for-3 and drove in two.
Grays 16, Royals 6 —Graz Cerchiai, Fox Faulkner, Jack Lee and Davis Marshall had key hits for the Grays. The defensive highlight of the game came from Thomas Gougion as he threw from right field to Dylan Roth at second base to catch a Royal trying to stretch a single into a double. Chance Crawford-Thomas had two hits and Nixon Laird pitched two strong innings for the Royals.
KC Monarchs 6, Orioles 5 — Griffin Jackson hit a bases-loaded, three-run double to cap a Monarchs comeback from a 5-0 deficit, and Rory Murphy ended the game by striking out the side with the bases loaded. Victoria Rice struck out six in two innings, and Kai Hollander escaped a jam with a key strikeout for the winners. Gage Gracey added a key RBI. For the Orioles, Hudson Wayne struck out five in two innings and Mikey Peavy roped a loud single.
TP Rangers 9, TP Reds 9 —Ryan Dupuis hit a ground-rule double to score two for the Rangers, while teammate Graham Hermanski pitched two shutout innings and Sebastian Barteau had three hits. For the Reds, Caden Greenberg threw a scoreless sixth to preserve the tie.
KC Monarchs 10, Royals 4 — Jacob DiPippa doubled, scored two runs and closed the game by striking out the side to lead the winners, who also received strong pitching from Chance Donahue, Victoria Rice and Rory Murphy. The Monarchs also benefitted from a good catch in center field by Sebastian Asensio. For the Royals, Nixon Laird struck out the side in one inning and added a sacrifice fly and single at the plate, and Cole Swift fanned four in 1 1/3 innings.
Grays 11, Twins 4 – Brodie Williams broke open a tie game with an RBI single, Davis Marshall followed with a bases-loaded double for the Grays, and Williams, Dylan Roth and Davis Marshall did the job on the mound, striking out 12, walking only four. Jack Lee and Graz Cerchiai each had two hits for the winners.
Levi Weber continued his torrid hitting for the Twins with a single and double while Noah Schick also had two hits. Weber, Schick, Boden Medow and Brandyn Schrobilgen all pitched well for the Twins, striking out 10.
Orioles 10, TP Rangers 9 — Hudson Wayne hit a three-run, walk-off, inside-the-park home run to lift the Orioles to the dramatic victory, after the Rangers’ Adrian Harden hit a two-run single in the top half of the inning. Ryan Dupuis had two runs scored and two RBIs, and Graham Hermanski pitched well for the Rangers.
Grays 11, TPLL Reds 7 — Brodie Williams delivered the key hit with a two out, two run double. Davis Marshall and Tristan Selvidge also had two hits for the Grays. Grays pitchers Williams, Marshall, Leo Tenenbown, Thomas Gougion and Graz Cerchiai combined to strike out 11 Reds.