Los Angeles Stars Defeat Salt Lake Bees 5-2 in Game 6 and will Face Jersey City Giants in the Federal League Championship Cup!
— Official ULB (@ULB_Commish) July 9, 2014
Charlotte Eagles Defeat Milwaukee Brewers 7-6 in Game 5 of Divisional Cup and will advance to Players League Championship Cup to face Jedi.
— Official ULB (@ULB_Commish) July 9, 2014
San Jose Jedi Sweep Oklahoma City RedHawks, and advance to Players League Championship Cup. Congrats to the Jedi!
— Official ULB (@ULB_Commish) July 8, 2014
The 2006 ULB Divisional Cup is now finished, and the ULB League Championship Cup match ups are now set. Four teams remain to challenge for the right to hold the Union Cup high.
The Portland Mavericks swept the San Juan Storm in 4 games, sending one former champion packing. The Mavericks weathered the Storm easily, but Portland remains concerned about the poor performance of Ace pitcher Roy Halladay, who allowed 11 hits and 6 runs in 6 innings of work in Game 1 of the Division Cup. Thankfully for the Mavs, the offense picked up the slack and was able to help Portland squeak out a 7-6 victory. Game 2 went 11 innings, with Portland coming out on top thanks to a Mark Teahen walk out solo home run.
The Boston Colonials defeated the Oklahoma City RedHawks, 4 games to 1, and were the only Wild Card to advance to the League Championship Cup. Oklahoma City took Game 1 by a score of 6-5, but the Colonials then dominated the rest of the series. Kevin Forbes and Dernell Stenson both homered in Game 2 and led the way to a 7-5 victory. Dan Mozingo gave up just 1 run in 6.2 innings of work in Game 3 to help the Colonials to a 4-1 win in Boston. Ben Sheets went 8 innings and allowed just 3 hits in Game 5 as Boston won the series in 5 games with a score of 5-2.
The Columbus Crickets put out the Phoenix Fire in 5 games to eliminate another former Union Cup Champion. The Fire won game one by a score of 5-4 behind Tim Lemon. The rest of the series was not as kind to the fire. A.J. Pierzynski provided a home run to tie Game 2 in the 3rd inning, and Jeff Baker scored on a Pat Osborn double to give the Crickets all the lead they would need in a 2-1 victory in Game 2. Matt White kept the Fire at bay in Game 3, allowing just 2 runs and 4 hits in 8 innings of work in a 5-2 victory for the Crickets. Kerry Wood went 7 innings and allowed just 2 runs in an 8-4 victory in Game 4. The final nail in the Fire’s coffin was Dan Denham who allowed just 2 unearned runs in Game 5. Eric Junge would allow a Jody Gerut solo homer in the 9th to briefly bolster the Fire’s hopes, but he then got Tagg Bozied to ground out and struck out Michael Sirois to send the Crickets to the League Championship Cup with a 4-3 victory.
The defending Union Cup Champion Buffalo Blizzard survived the hardest fought series as they sent the New Orleans/Kansas City Gold Sox back to their adopted home for the rest of the playoffs. Buffalo won Game 1 on a 3 run walkoff home run by Corey Smith in the bottom of the 9th inning to give the Blizzard an 11-10 victory. The Gold Sox won Game 2 in the 10th inning on a Tom Brady RBI single in a 4-3 Gold Sox victory. The Gold Sox took a 2-1 lead in the series behind Gen Sueyoshi’s 8 inning, 2 run masterpiece in a 5-2 loss for Buffalo. The Blizzard tied the series in a 15-11 scorefest in which every starter for both teams had a hit. Darren Holt had 5 hits in 5 at bats, with 3 runs scored to lead Buffalo to a hard fought victory. Jeff Flaig added 4 hits and 2 home runs and 4 RBIs as well. Lloyd Peever went the complete game in Game 5 and allowed just 1 run, while Roy Oswalt fell apart early and lasted just 1 inning and allowed 5 runs. The Gold Sox would win 11-1 and take a 3-2 lead in the series. Antonio McDowell, Bryan Bass and Gene Smith all homered for the Gold Sox. With the series on the line, Gerik Baxter turned in a dominant performance and held the Gold Sox to 2 runs on 6 hits in 8 innings of work. Corey Smith and Brent Abernathy both homered for the Blizzard as they went on to win 6-2 and send the series to a decisive Game 7. Kris Benson went 7.1 innings and allowed 4 runs on 8 hits. But Gen Sueyoshi lasted just 1.2 innings and allowed 5 runs, 2 of them unearned. Bryan Bass had the unfortunately costly error in the second which led to the unearned runs by Ben Cordova and Brent Abernathy and ultimately drove Sueyoshi from the game. Bass was also caught stealing in the top of the 2nd to end the inning. Darren Holt added another 3 hits to bring his Division Cup average to .433 with 13 hits, as well as 11 RBI’s. The Blizzard would secure a 8-4 victory, with Stan Green striking out Auturo McDowell to end the game and send the Blizzard to the League Championship Cup as they continue to attempt to become 3 team to win back to back Union Cups.
In the League Championship Cup it will be the Boston Colonials hosting the Columbus Crickets and the Portland Mavericks hosting the defending champs in the Buffalo Blizzard.
The Union Cup hopefuls have been reduced to four teams as the Divisional Cup ended with a few shockers. In the Players League, the first to fall was the Boston Colonials. They were swept by the St. Paul Saints, four games to none. The Saints will move on to face the Oklahoma City RedHawks, who knocked out the Columbus Crickets 4 games to 2.
Over in the Federal League, the San Juan Storm came back from a 3-1 hole to claim their series with the New Orleans/Kansas City Gold Sox. By virtue of time zone, the Storm became the first time to do so in ULB History. Three hours later, the Buffalo Blizzard became the second team to come back from being down 3 games to 1 against the Portland Pioneers.
The matchups for the Union League Baseball League Cup will be the St. Paul Saints vs the Oklahoma City RedHawks in Oklahoma City, and the Buffalo Blizzard against the San Jun Storm, starting in San Juan.
The ULB will play for the first time since the September 11th attacks tomorrow. The slate of games features 2 key matchups that have playoff implications. The Federal League remains to be decided, and every team in the division is still in the hunt, though only the Gold Sox and Blizzard are likely to win.
The New Orleans Gold Sox have struggled in September, and have seen their 5 game lead erode to just 2 games ahead of the Buffalo Blizzard.
The Gold Sox will face the Hollywood Stars, who have played New Orleans to a 8-12 record this year.
Meanwhile, The Buffalo Blizzard will face an uphill challenge against the San Antonio DireWolves, who despite having a better record than either Buffalo or New Orleans will be watching at home this year as they were eliminated by Portland two weeks ago. The DireWolves will likely relish the role of playing spoiler, as will Hollywood.
The Washington Generals are also still not officially eliminated, but would need a miracle to survive the final week of the schedule with their Playoff hopes intact, they would need to gain 4 games with 6 remaining.
In an even more bizzare scenrio, if the Jersey City Giants can win every game on their schedule, and the Gold Sox go on a 6 game losing steak, The Blizzard go 3-3 and the Stars go 5-1, the Division would end up in a 4-way tie.
The Columbus Crickers clinched the Players League Eastern Division and will be heading to the Playoffs for the first time in team history. The Crickets have amassed a 96-50 record thus far, and will face the defending Union Cup Winners, the San Jose Jedi. Both teams currently have the same record. If they both finish the season with the same record, the tie would go to the Jedi, who won the season series 11 games to 6.
The Pioneers will return to the playoffs for the 3rd time in a row this season after clinching the Federal League Western Division. They fell just short last season as the San Jose Jedi defeated them in the Union Cup, 4 games to 1. Perhaps the 3rd time is the charm and this will be the season that the Pioneers win it all. They’ll likely find out who their opponent will be as the Federal League Eastern Divisional race wraps up. New Orleans looks like the favorite at this time, but the Pioneers could put a dent in their lead by sweeping them.