News

  • The 2017 opening day report

    March 12, 2017

    Spring is in the air, and opening day finally happened for the Bay Area Vintage Baseball League.  The league format for 2017 is a single division of nine teams, and that means eight teams kicked off the season on Sunday.  Upsets were the theme of the day.  The resurgent Dublin Aces put in a stellar performance against the very strong San Francisco Pelicans, winning their match 15-2.  The Berkeley Clarions defeated the Hayward Journals, 5-4, in a walk-off by Dave “Driver” Phillips.  This despite the Haywards’ excellent Behind throwing out four runners from the dish, and savvy hurling by both squads.  The Journals were undefeated last season until the final, and there is no chance they will take this defeat lightly.  The San Jose Dukes had the tying runs on base when they made the final out in a tense, 10-12 defeat to the reigning champions, the San Francisco Pacifics.  The Dukes and the Aces have strengthened their squads with the addition of new players, including veterans from the New Almaden Cinnabars.  The East/South Bay is looking rejuvenated.  In the late game at Big Rec, the San Francisco Barbary Coast took an early lead against the San Francisco Sea Lions and never looked back, coasting to a 34-5 victory.

    Thanks to all the Sirs for making it happen; and thanks to the Cranks for coming out, enjoying a lovely, free day of baseball at the park, and for supporting the league.  Fingers crossed, weather will permit the first weekend’s matches to be made up this Sunday, March 19th, and that the Oakland Colonels will get off the blocks, as they are surely champing at the bit!

    Stay tuned to this page for updates, schedules, results, and reports.

    Faithfully,

    Mordecai Fassbinder

  • Opening day a wash

    It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. The sun is shining but the rain is falling; the grass is overjoyed but the infield is soggy. Cranks must wait another week for the start of the BAVBB 2017 season. All games were cancelled everywhere in the bay area owing to field conditions: Golden Gate Park, Berkeley, Oakland, and San Jose. We all cheer for rain except on Sundays! The BAVBB will kick off again next Sunday; cranks stay tuned to this page for updates on rescheduled matches.

    Faithfully, Veracity Jackson-Swift

  • A trip to the home of the Athletics

    A trip to the home of the Athletics

    The league made its annual voyage to the home field of the Oakland A's on Saturday. Players and cranks gathered in lot A for a round of drinks and charred meat products. 

    Soon after entering the stadium, Juice trascked down a foul ball and lobbed it into the group. The very young Harper Demmons ended up with the ball, and fully enjoyed it.

    The scene was captured on the TV broadcast and mentioned on MLB's CUT4 blog. They called our group "peak fandom," which is a great honor for our group. Perhaps a great tribute to our gentlemanly ways!

    Having been seen by television crew, we were asked if we would take part in the trivia quiz during the 5th inning. A group headed down and waited to go on the jumbo tron.

    Luckily for us, the trivia was period appropriate and lady crank and commissioner wife, Annie Shaw answered it confidently.

    A great time was had by all and we look forward to doing it again next year.

  • Haywards Roll On

    15th of May, 2016

    Mosswood, Park

    The Haywards Journals pulled a bit further away from the rest of the southern division on Sunday, defeating the Oakland Colonels 11-3 at Mosswood Park.  The match began cagily, with each team plating aces through the first three frames and putting up a donut in the fourth; so that the fifth inning began all square at three-a-piece.  But the Haywards’ bats then came to life, driving balls through the dodgy Mosswood infield and past the mitts of the Colonels’ fielders.  The Haywards plated eight aces in the final three frames, while ace hurler, Berto “Rocky” Morales silenced the Colonels’ bats the rest of the way, allowing no runs in the final four frames and finishing a complete game with thirteen strikeouts and three allowed.

    For the J's, the defense started shaky but straightened out after a few innings.  Jose “Hawk” Corral caught a ball in right field after it caromed off the massive oak tree that looms over the line and continued down through the branches and leaves, into his waiting mitt.  Nick “Heels” Jeffrey flagged down a line drive at second base and doubled off a Colonel trying to get a headstart to third. Big Berto “Pops” Morales displayed the blazing speed of a young cheetah to track down a ball in left field in the top of the seventh.

    The Colonels may not have felt it was their finest home performance, but they provided a few gingers in the field.  Luis “Mule” Argueta handled duties behind the plate with his steely demeanor and kept the Haywards from taking bases, while rookie Colonel Paul “Buc” Ash tended the centerfield garden with grace and sure hands.  What’s more, the Colonels helped themselves by picking off a Hayward greenhorn at first using that old chestnut, the hidden ball trick.  The Journals’ base coaches went missing on that play!

    For the Colonel’s offense, Captain Matt “Chops” Siee scored two of the three runs with lead-off singles followed by stolen bases.  Veteran John “Bull” Davenport scored the other run in the third inning on a base knock by “Squeaky.”

    In another notable incident, the match was briefly interrupted by a flying contraption, similar to something one might see in DaVinci’s sketchbooks, that hovered over the field before buzzing off back to the future.  Cranks referred to it as a “Drone,” and if that is what the future holds in store, this reporter is happy remaining in 1886.Huzzah to the Journals and the Colonels as they played a fine match with grit and grace.

    Faithfully Recorded On This Day,

    Jeremiah Jacksonsson

  • Playoff Schedule Announced!

    15 April 2016

    As avid Cranks are aware, the BAVBB added two new teams in 2016: the San Jose Dukes and the San Francisco Sea Lions, bringing the total number of Bay Area Vintage Base Ball teams to ten.  Huzzah and welcome, Ballists! In order to facilitate local rivalries and reduce travel, the league created two divisions of five teams:

    North/West Division:                                                     South/East Division:

    Berkeley Clarions                                                             Dublin Aces

    San Francisco Barbary Coast                                        Dublin Cinnabars

    San Francisco Pacifics                                                     Hayward Journals

    San Francisco Pelicans                                                    Oakland Colonels

    San Franciso Sea Lions                                                   San Jose Dukes

    During the course of the season each team will play home and away within its division, and once against each team in the rival division.  The champion will be decided when the NW winner meets the SE winner at Dublin Sports Ground, field 3, at noon on Sunday, August 14th.

    In addition to the BAVBB championship trophy, teams will compete in a single elimination Cup tournament for the Golden Gate Cup.  All teams will compete, and the first round will be played in Dublin before and after the Championship game: 9 vs 8 at 10am and 10 vs 7 at 3pm.  There will be barbeque, festivities, and best of all, Base Ball all day long!

    The second round of the Golden Gate Cup will be held at Big Rec the following weekend, Sunday August 21st. The remaining eight teams will play four games and the Cranks at Golden Gate Park will be treated to a full day of vintage Base Ball, food, and music.

    The Oakland Colonels were the winners of the Golden Gate Cup last year

    The final weekend of the season will be a two-day affair; the Golden Gate Cup Semifinal round will be held onSaturday, August 27th, with the remaining four teams competing for spots in the final to be held the following day, Sunday, August 28th, at Big Rec Park, at noon.  The Cup final will be followed by the All-Star game at 3pm.

    Cranks and Ballists, mark your calendars- August will be a magical month for Base Ball in the Bay Area!

    Your Faithful Reporter,

    Horatio Handley-Hamfacker

  • Read all about it: Journals 12, Pelicans 6

     

    3 April 2016

    Big Rec Park, San Francisco

    The cold, foggy marine layer peeled back over Big Rec Park on Sunday just in time to reveal a Base Ball match between the visiting Journals of Hayward and the newly-revamped San Francisco Pelicans. 

    The Pelicans gave debuts to two rookie hurlers, while the Journals handed the ball to veteran Jose “Tomahawk” Corral.  Though the match was well-fought and close, it proved once again there is no substitute for experience.  “Tomahawk” hurled a complete game for the J’s, confusticating the Pelicans’ sticks with his high-release, short-armed fastballs and quick-pitches, followed by looping Eephus lobs.  “Hawk,” too, fielded his position with aplomb, adroitly tagging out a Pelican runner who exercised undue faith in the long backstop of Big Rec in an unfortunate attempt to steal home.

    The Pelicans stayed close with the help of centerfielder, Nate “Bean” Underwood, who allowed nothing, not one bomb, not one dying quail, to fall in centerfield.  By the end of the game the Journals had all but given up on trying to strike the ball in his direction.  The Pelicans’ infield held its own as well, as second baseman, Steven Starfas, stabbed a wicked opposite field line strike with his backhand off the stick of Haywards’ newcomer, “Twig,” and doubled the runner off second, killing another J’s rally in the sixth. The other half of the Haywards’ battery, “Stubbles,” not only provided pop from the striker’s box, hitting a tape-measure triple and driving in runs; he also called a wonderful game from behind the dish.  Working together, “Hawk” and “Stubbles” never let the count run over three balls and “Stubbles” kept almost every hurl in front, only allowing two balls to escape to the remote backstop of Big Rec, thereby slowing the Pelicans’ running game.

    What’s more, the Journals possessed an intangible factor that contributed to their win- Nick “Heels” Jeffrey, returning from devastating injury last year bearing a new, smaller version of himself to Crank it up for the J’s, provided the extra bit of inspiration for the Haywards to overcome a strong Pelican side.

     

    -Turgiss McGuillicutty, Sunset Dispatch

  • Sea Lion welcome to BAVBB a Colonels ace parade

    April 3, 2016

    Mosswood Park, Oakland

    It was a bright and sunny day at Mosswood Park as the Oakland Colonels welcomed the newly formed San Francisco Sea Lions for their home opener. This day was indeed bright for the Colonels as they won their match by the inimitable tally, 0 - 31.The Colonels introduced the Sea Lions to the league in the top of the first, when, after a Sea Lion runner stole second, Ben “Professor” Texara and hurler Matt “Chops” Siee somehow made the ball disappear. The runner then unknowingly took his lead for an extra base and the Professor made the ball reappear to tag the runner, ending the scoring threat. The Colonels welcomed two new gentlemen to the shield this year and did they ever make their presence known! "Buc" collected his first hit and tended the garden like a hawk- calm, fluid, corralling every pill sent his way. “Boom" solidified not only his name but a place in Mosswood history, by striking a towering shot clear over the trees in left field that has yet to land. “Chops” threw five shutout innings and veteran Behind Luis “Mule” Argueta collected four foul outs on the day; Mule now has a tally of six of these most difficult plays over two games. Every Colonel collected a hit and touched home plate in a complete team effort for the victory. A great match for the reigning Golden Gate Cup Champions!The score does not reflect the great character and drive of the young and mighty San Francisco Sea Lions. They showed true grit and enthusiasm throughout the match, as they begin to learn the quirks and finesse of vintage Base Ball. Hats off to Naji “Skip" Ali for playing the Behind the entire game, making tough play after play.  The Sea Lions can take pride in their highlights: a stellar over-the-shoulder corral by their 3rd baseman, Kevin “Walrus” Snyder, and a handful of difficult catches by their outfielders. The Sea Lions will be a formidable team in the West and cannot be overlooked despite a dodgy start against a veteran squad. Huzzah the Colonels, the Sea Lions, and the BAVBB!

    Your Scribe,

    Normanly Longface

  • Shadow's swan song: Clarions 28, Dukes 7

    Sunday, April 3rd, 2016

    Berkeley

    In a fitting swan song for one of the most feared hurlers in the BAVBB, Eric “Shadow” Longville pitched a gem against the San Jose Dukes on Sunday. “Shadow” put an exclamation point on his tenure by doing what we have all come to expect of him- lining ‘em up and knockin' ‘em down. “Shadow” recorded nine strikeouts in a vintage performance we’ve come to expect.  He is moving back east to a very flat and alternatingly cold and scorching, but always boring land, known as
    “Clev-e-land,” where the natives play a very different and vastly inferior version of the game we love.

     

    “Shadow” pitched five shutout innings before the Dukes managed to plate an ace.  He received support in the field to thwart the Dukes’ attempts to rally, from Joe “Conquistador” McDermott, who made a difficult catch in deep right center, and from Joe “Panner,” Olivas, who flagged a hard-hit line shot to left field.

    The Clarions started their offensive onslaught in the first frame with an RBI double by Matt “Squeeze” Collins, scoring Alex “YoungBlood” Parker-Guerrero all the way from his station at first base.  Veteran Clarion, Mike “Bearcat” Lewis, struck the ball well on the day, going four-for-four from the strikers’ box and piling the pressure on the Dukes. The dam broke in the fifth inning, in which the Clarions plated fifteen, capped off with a bases-clearing round-tripper by “Conquistador,” who hit the ball so far no Duke could claim it. Every Clarion plated during the inning- a remarkable feat- and one after which the outcome to the match was no longer in question.

    “Shadow” was honored after the game by the Clarions for his loyalty and fierce competiveness. “Shadow’s” hurling was a key component- an essential component- of the Clarions’ brand of baseball over the last three-and-a-half seasons.  From the hurler’s box, “Shadow” served up the “high cheese” with a ladle of intensity, and battled ever striker he faced.  Neither will it be forgotten that he carried a big stick in the striker’s box and often helped himself and his side with timely hits.  He will be missed by Cranks and Ballists and ever welcome back to the BAVBB.

    For the Love of the Game,

    Jackson Tombly