Alberta Baseball Confederacy Week 26: The Finals
Half a year’s worth of baseball comes to an end this week as the major leagues wrap-up the regular season and the Alberta Baseball Confederacy presents its first Championship showdown. Week 25 offered little suspense, as the Northern Miners and Vancouver Drizzle each won their division championships matches by 140 point margins.
The Miners’ pitching staff delivered five wins and three saves, led by a 50-point week from their regular season pitching leader Aaron Harang. Garrett Atkins’ 35-points set the pace for Miners’ batters. Atkins’ contribution came in a three game series at home against the Giants where he went 9-for-13 with 10 RBI, 6 runs and 19 bases.
The Nuke LaLoosh Fan Club failed to deliver in the NEU division final, falling more than 30-points back on the batting side of the ledger, and producing just one win and no saves from the pitchers.
Meanwhile the Drizzle enjoyed 30-point performances from Aramis Ramirez, Mike Cameron, and Magglio Ordonez, and the pitching staff turned in six wins and three saves. A resurgent Francisco Cordero led the team from the bullpen, turning in two wins and three saves for a remarkable 41-points.
The GWTA division final saw the demise of one of the league’s most dominant teams, the Pete Munro Doctrine. The fall could hardly have been swifter or more surprising. Entering the season’s final week with a 60-28 record, the Doctrine coughed-up the league-lead by going 0-4, and then posted the lowest score of any team in the first playoff week. Only the bye accorded to division winners extended their season. Disaster struck in the division final, with first baseman Jason Giambi succumbing to injury without scoring a point, and DH Carlos Delgado going scoreless in five games. Coming after the loss of Travis Hafner on September 1st, the Doctrine's sluggers appeal peculiarly cursed. A valiant 39-point effort by Chase Utley was not enough, and Kenny Rogers excepted, no pitcher cracked the 15-point barrier.
The Miners and Drizzle will now duel for the prize. Both will be at the mercy of MLB managers. With the NL playoff races going down to the wire, Greg Maddux (Miners) and Brett Myers (Drizzle) may lose their currently scheduled second starts if the Dodgers or Phillies clinch. And veterans from squads whose playoff fates are determined are likely to rest in the final week.