News

  • Haywards Win the Pennant; Golden Gate Cup All to Play For

    28 August 2017

    This season was the most closely contested season of Bay Area Vintage Base Ball.  The quality of play has been outstanding and the results nail-biting and fiercely challenged.  There were more one-run games, extra-innings games, and walk-offs than in any previous season.  Any team could have beat any team on any given Sunday, and that is what happened.

    Yet!  The Bay Area Vintage Base Ball regular season concluded this past weekend with the Hayward Journals taking the title, with Captains Jamie “Junior” Ramirez and Jose “Tomahawk” Corral leading the way.   The Haywards displayed consistency and discipline all season, and represented all the best of BAVBB: fundamentals of Base Ball- defense, hurling, and timely offense- and most importantly, the gentlemanly spirit of the BAVBB.  The Haywards earned their title.  What’s more, the Haywards fielded the first full-time female player, Andrea “Gopher” soon-to-be Morales, and what may be the first middle infield domestic partnership, along with All-Star Berto “Rocky” Morales, to turn a double play.  Huzzah to the Journals and credit to them for exemplifying everything for which the BAVBB stands.

    The San Francisco Pacifics were dethroned despite an excellent season.  The Pacs, led by Sage “Buttercup” Bray, finished a close second because of their rock-solid defense, hitting, hurling, and aggressive baserunning.  The Pacifics play Base Ball the right way.  They will challenge again for the title.

    The Berkeley Clarions finished third behind new father and the new leadership of Chase “Battery” Hoblitzell, the veteran Brad “Frenchy” Gallien, and a host of new and veteran players.  The Clarions hit, played excellent defense, and won ball games.  Congratulations to the Clarions for a fine season.

    Deep in the east bay, the Dublin Aces came off a slow start to muscle their way to a winning record and a fourth-place finish.  Led by captain Casey “Fingers” Hammonds, the Aces, in their black-and-gold uniforms and with their correct style of Ball, laid a marker for next year.

    The San Francisco Barbary Coast started the season strong but faded as summer wore on; behind captain Brody “Reverend” Romsey the Coasters managed to split with almost every team and finished with a clean .500 record.  The Coast looks strong heading into the Cup, so teams, beware!

    The San Francisco Pelicans finished strong, yet sixth. Injuries affected the squad, notably their excellent hurler “Gator;” but captain Matt “Boxcar” Rheinschild rallied the bats, gloves, and the men, and the Pelicans produced fine performances to put wins on the board.

    The San Jose Dukes started terribly but came on strong behind the leadership of George “Dipper Dan” Smith and the battery of Corey “Pup” Gazay (co-founder of the league) and Vinny “Uno” Pelligrini.  The Dukes are to be lauded for most distance traveled to play Base Ball and that is itself a form of victory, because any day playing Base Ball is a good day.  We look forward to seeing the Dukes in the Cup!

    The Oakland Colonels had their moments but the glory from 2015's Cup victory faded this season in the shadows of Mosswood and left the Colonels in seventh, despite the best efforts of veteran Captain Matt “Chops” Siee, Luis “Mule” Arguello, and Ben “Professor” Texara.  The Colonels are down but never out, so expect them to show in the Cup.

    In last place came the San Francisco Sea Lions, but there is a silver lining.  Naji “Skip” Ali brought in a few new players and the Sea Lions went from a team that everyone expected to beat to a team that can win on any given Sunday.  There are no bad teams in the BAVBB, and the Lions are on the up.  Watch out!

    The Bay Area Vintage Base Ball league is the best Base Ball happening in the Bay Area, and it’s only going to get more exciting as we play through the Golden Gate Cup and All-Star game.  Forget about these new-fangled modern teams- the best Ball you’ll see this summer is at Dublin Fallon Sports Grounds, September 10th, and Big Rec, Golden Gate Park, September 16th and 17th.  Come one, come all.  Choose a team and Crank your heart out if you love the game of Base Ball.  It’s free, it’s fun, and we play Base Ball as it was meant to be played.

    Yours in Faith,

    Albatross Jaxon

  • Base Ball Doesn’t Get Any Better Than This

    Grinder of the Pacifics made a unfathomable play to keep the Pacs ahead of the Haywards Journals.

    San Francisco Bay Area, 7 May, 2017

    The Bay Area Vintage Base Ball League has never been more exciting.  The last two weekends saw six of eight matches resolved by a single ace, two in extra innings.  The league has never been more competitive, nor more closely and evenly contested.

    On Sunday, April 30th, the San Francisco Sea Lions, in their second year, traveled to Mosswood Park in Oakland to take on the veteran Oakland Colonels.  The match required all of the Colonels’ experience and nous to defeat the fledgling Sea Lions by the razor-thin margin of 5-4.  It was an encouraging result for the Sea Lions, led by Naji “Skip” Ali, and a professional win for the Colonels, led by Matt “Chops” Siee.

    In the match of the weekend, between the two top teams of 2016, the San Francisco Pacifics rallied to defeat the Haywards Journals, 5-4, in a tense, tactical battle.  Both teams played exquisite defense behind excellent hurlers.  For the Journals, Berto “Rocky” Morales fired darts to the other half of his battery, Alex “Padre” Morales; whereas the Pacs were led by ace Eric “Jumbo” Petit.  The game was decided in the end by grit, determination, and as always, a bit of luck; Pacs’ outfielder and commissioner of the league, Matt “Ranger” Petty won man of the match for timely hits and gingers in the garden.

    Later that day, the San Francisco Barbary Coast eked past the San Francisco Pelicans, 4-3.  It was a tense affair, with runners thrown out at the plate and at every other base; fittingly the game was won with the home team Pelicans threatening with a man on third and two hands, only to have a trailing runner caught in a pickle between second and an occupied third, for the final out.  Base Ball is a game of fine margins and questionable decisions- inches, as they say.

    In the East Bay game of the day, the San Jose Dukes and captain Dan “Dipper” Smith visited their cousins, the Dublin Aces, and the home Aces came away with a hard-fought 9-7 victory, behind captain Casey “Fingers” Hammonds.

    Never had there been a weekend with slimmer margins of victory, until…the following Sunday, May 7th.

    In the East Bay, the Haywards Journals skimmed past the Oakland Colonels at Mosswood, winning by the slender margin of 8-7.  It was another battle of veteran minds, Jamie “Junior” Ramirez leading the Haywards, and Matt “Chops” Siee leading the Colonels.  It could not have been closer without ending in a draw.

    At Big Rec, the early game was a thirteen-inning thriller between the San Francisco Pacifics and the San Francisco Pelicans.  Both teams had chances to win but defense and close plays kept the teams neck-and-neck for the length of almost two complete games.  In the end, the Pelicans plated the winning run in what is now the longest game in BAVBB history.

    Solid defence has helped the Sea Lions close the margin of aces in their games. Einstein flashing the leather here. The league in general is playing the best defence we've seen in the league.

    The second game at Big Rec featured the San Jose Dukes visiting the San Francisco Sea Lions.  Despite acquiring veteran and all-star second baseman, Mike “Bearcat” Lewis, the Sea Lions were no match for the Dukes and their star hurler, veteran and co-founder of the league, Corey “Pup” Gazay.  The match finished 14-2, in favor of the Dukes.

    In the final match of the day, which lasted until sundown, the San Francisco Barbary Coast battled the Berkeley Clarions through 9 innings and finished with a walk-off by Greg “Sparks” Castro, starting hurler, to win 11-10.  And as excellent as were the hurlers, the true stars of the match were the Behinds- Wes “Dread Pirate” Goodman Levy for the Coast, and “Nemo” for the Clarions- both played all nine from the squat and both pegged out runners and had timely hits.  Matt “Milkman” Peterson and Dan-O “Small Plates” Owens had key RBIs for the Coast prior to Sparky’s walkoff two-RBI final nail in the coffin.

    Cranks, don’t miss another weekend of Bay Area Vintage Base Ball!  It is the best free show in town.  Guaranteed!

    No matches will be played this weekend out of deference to all the wonderful Mothers out there, but play will resume the weekend of May 21st, though not at Big Rec, owing to Bay-to-Breakers.  Stay tuned to the website for schedules and scores, pick a team to back, and come out to your local park and see why the BAVBB is the best show in town!

    Yours, in Faith,

    C. Emerson Winchester III

    Top: Carl officiated 29 innings of base ball on May 7th. The day ended with the Coasters defeating the Clarions in 9 innings.

      

  • BAVBB and the Oakland Athletics

    The Annual A's game is back! That's right, the day that brought us "peak fandom" last year and this gang the year before, is set to be the biggest yet.

    The league is offering a prize to the team that brings the most players and cranks to the yard. The team that can drum up the most support will win a box of vintage base balls. We always need a few extra of those and they're practically on the level of gold in our league, so that should motivate a few of you.

    Don't be shy, bring thy neighbor, bring thy wife. Each person in period appropriate garb counts as a point towards your prize winning entourage.

    Please go here to sign up.

  • 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.