News

  • 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

  • March 20: Pacifics vs. Barbary Coasty

    Big Rec, Golden Gate Park

    20 March 2016

    In misty conditions, under steel-gray skies at Big Rec Park, the Bay Area Vintage Base Ball League at long last got underway.  Two weekends of rainouts postponed the start of the season, and the Ballists were eager to cross the lines and take the field, despite the conditions.  The outfield grass was long, bushy, and wet; yet the infield was trim and flat as the San Francisco Barbary Coast hosted the reigning champion San Francisco Pacifics.  Both teams took infield, shook hands; then Carl the Sir called “play ball,” and the 2016 BAVBB season began.

    Peter “Colonel” Banks took the ball into the hurler’s box for the Coast.  The Colonel throws with a high, overhand release and great accuracy, but the Pacifics were in no hurry to strike at his offerings. The Pacs worked the count relentlessly, only to put the ball into play to ask questions of the Barbary Coast defense; and with their signature running game, plated three aces in the first inning.

    Yet the Barbary Coast came back strong, showing they too, can pick up sticks and make hits; the Coast plated two aces in the bottom half.  Eric “Jumbo” Petit is the ace of the Pacs’ staff and he showed that he has the stuff, delivering to the plate with his high, overhand release, that gives the impression to the striker that he is merely handing the ball to the Behind.

    After the first, the game became a defensive battle, with conditions contributing to mistakes on both sides; yet quality shined through the dismal weather as both teams performed outstanding gingers. Notably, both teams threw out runners at the plate from the outfield, and both Behinds threw runners out while attempting to steal bases.  Credit to the Pacs left sided outfielders, Matt “Ranger” Petty, and Brian “Bolt” Faudree,” for preventing balls falling into the deep grass and clover, instead returning hands to the hurler.   For the Coast, Sammy “Badger” Hoffman was exceptional wherever in the outfield he played and Greg “Sparky” Castro added some ginger with a few excellent plays in left on his BAVBB debut.

    Nevertheless the Coast was always playing comeback as the Pacifics never lost the lead.  The Coast threatened many times, only to come up short owing to the excellent Pacifics’ fielding. While “Ranger” and “Bolt” took away long flies to the outfield by the Coasters’ sluggers, Lester “Shoestring” Lee made dangerous pop-ups in the infield look easy to field despite the rainy, windy conditions.  Sage “Buttercup” Bray made a number of plays from second to thwart Coasters’ rallies, and both Behinds performed exceptionally by blocking would-be passed-balls that, owing to the long backstop, would have been guaranteed stolen bases had the Behinds not been so willing to sacrifice their bodies.  Wes “Dread Pirate” Goodman-Levy and Peter “Bones” McAfee deserve much of the credit for keeping the score down from behind the dish.

    As the rain accelerated during the sixth inning the teams nevertheless pushed on.  The Coast placed the tying run on second but could not plate in the bottom sixth, and in the top of the seventh the Pacifics added to their lead with a two-RBI double by ex-Pelican and new Pacific, Scott “Friendly Fire” Endberg.  The Coast added a run in the bottom seventh and had runners on to tie, but the Pacs finished off the game with a great play to throw out a runner at third.

    The Barbary Coast will be disappointed and the Pacs will feel content with their victory, but the Cranks can only be thrilled that the quality and excitement of the Bay Area Vintage Base Ball League is back for another season.

    Your Faithful Reporter,

    Tupper McGee

  • The Dukes are back in action

    Opening Day in San Jose,

    The Oakland Colonels picked up where they left off last season, As Chops went 5 strong innings from the hurlers box.  The Professor and Bull pitched the 6th and 7th, respectively, in a strong performance by the Green shirted gents.

    Mule, as usual, absolutely crushed the ball, and highlighted the Colonels strong offence.

    As for the revived Dukes, they were finding their way, as a new team often has to do in this league.  Pup, Dipper Dan, Burlap and Enrique all hurled for the Dukes. Sidewinder showed some great ginger at shortstop.  On one fantastic 6-3 putout, the ball somehow found Sidewinder's glove as he dove and he made a great throw to make the hand.

    The Dukes Manager, Dipper Dan, was happy with his team's first outing.  The Dukes fought to earn every ace they plated.  However, the Colonels showed why, and how, they won the Golden Gate Cup in 2015.  Something for the Dukes to aspire to, hopefully in the near future.

    The Dukes will have to say farewell to Eli "Burlap" Wasson.  Burlap's job is taking him to Detroit, and he will have to retire from BAVBB for now.  It may have been short-lived, but it was fun to have him at at the beginning of the Dukes revival.  Best wishes Burlap.

    Glenwick Chuggles, San Jose Dispatch News

  • The Current State of Base Ball

    Bret Harte Field is partially submerged.

    Weather Report, March 9, 2016

    A 'Pineapple Express' brought as much as two inches of rain to the Bay Area over the past weekend, forestalling the start to the season, which was to have taken place on Sunday, March 6th.  The forecast for rain continues to look bleak for Ballists and Cranks, though somewhat better for the trees, flowers, and infield grass.  Two games are scheduled for this coming weekend, Sunday March 13th, at Big Rec Park in Golden Gate.  The league commissioners will keep a weather-eye for any changes in conditions, and faithfully update the schedule as reports come in.

    The provident commissioners planned for weather exigencies in this el nino season; postponed games will be rescheduled for bye weeks that do not fall on holidays, including an extra weekend at the end of the season for any remaining games to be decided before the playoffs.

    Stay tuned for schedule updates, and know that the sun will shine on BAVBB one day, soon.

    Your faithful reporter,

    Albatross Jackson

  • League to expand, The Dukes ride again!

    The board of director's uninously voted to expand the league to 10 teams for next season. 

    The original BAVBB team, The Dukes, will rise from the ashes and be headed by "Dipper" dan. The team will feature members of the original team (league founder Steve "Cappy" Gazay and son Corey "Pup" Gazay).

    Along with the San Jose team, a new San Francisco team will be started. Plans for that team are still forming, but there's a good solid core of players.

    A ten team league means a new challenge for scheduling. Board members are debating whether to split the league into two divisions, or play an 18 game season (2 against each team).

    The Dukes

  • Oakland Colonels win inaugural Golden Gate Cup

    The Oakland Colonels have won the first ever Golden Gate Cup. 

    It was not an easy road, they first had to get throught the Dublin Aces, a match that would go 9 innings and end in a walk-off victory.

    To hoist the Cup they would have to beat the Hayward Journals, who upset the season champion San Francisco Pacifcs.

    It was a close back-and-forth battle, but the Colonels emerged victorious and will have their name engraved upon the silver cup.

    The weather was warm and the cranks were entertained during the championship game at Big Rec in Golden Gate Park.

    Team members were announced by Carl "Sir" Gibbs, and an appearance was made by injured Hayward players, "Pops" and "Heels."

  • BAVBB Season Update, pt. 2

    The Clarions

    The Clarions experienced another season of flux, as has come to be the “norm” for this nascent squad. After the franchise-best season in 2014, the Clarions started the season without two of their biggest run producers and their star center fielder, who traded himself to the Pacs. Yet the Fall Ball recruits once again proved invaluable. Joe "Conquistador" McDermott filled the outfield leadership position with a flair commensurate of his nickname and led the team in just about every offensive stat. Matt "Squeeze" Collins proved an invaluable utility player in the infield and in the squat, and produced solid offensive numbers as well. Dan "Apollo" Stevens (so named because he ran a 50K the day before his first game and a half-marathon two weeks later on the day of his second) proved a versatile player in the infield and outfield. With the mid-season loss of Berkeley founding member and excellent striker and outfielder, Barry "Brick" Chubrik, who moved his family to the Jersey Shore and the land of Bruce Springsteen, the Clarions once again went into recruiting mode, adding three new "A's" to the roster: Andy Goff, Arthur Corpuz, and Alex Parker-Guerrero, all of whom had impressive initial appearances.

    As for the veterans, Brad “Frenchy” Gallien ran the show; and the battery of Eric “Shadow” Longeville and Dave “Commander” Garibaldi proved to be one of the most fearsome in the league. “Shadow” led the league in K’s, and nobody steals on “Commander.” With Dave “Driver” Phillips hurling as well, and “Frenchy” playing the second Behind, the Clarions cannot be taken lightly. The Clarions rallied late season with victories over the Barbary Coast and a sweep of the New Alamden Cinnabars. 

    The Cinnabars

    The New Almaden Cinnabars are no strangers to success in the BAVBB. Three times they have won the title, and while it’s not on for 2015, they made a good run late season to remind Cranks that the ‘Bars are here to stay. The Cinnabars are captained by eminent ballist Scott “Fly” Epperson, and led from the hurler’s box by younger brother, Eric "Tumbleweed" Epperson. It remains impossible to obtain hits to the left side of the infield because of the soft hands and easy, accurate toss of shortstop Ryan "Husker" Svrdlin. “Husker” made innumerable phenomenal plays this season; and if that weren’t enough, he has been lethal with his bat. "Tumbleweed" hurled most of the innings for the ‘Bars this year; hats off to him for enduring the abuse to his arm for five months. First year rookies Mark "Chester" Tellez, Vincent "Pops" Pellegrini, and Abel "Florida" Leon played excellently in their first year and helped to shore up the lineup with clutch hitting and good catches in the garden. “Florida” stepped up big by taking the ball and giving “Tumbleweed” much needed breaks from the hurler's box. Centerfielder Rudy "Holiday" Pitts ran the show in the garden, as he does. Jason "The Kid" Svrdlin came back from a health scare during the ‘Bars absent season in 2014 and contributed in right field and in the striker's box. Captain “Fly” handled second base like he lives there and had his best ever season in the field. Special mention goes out to Vinny "Uno" Pellegrini for donning the gear of the Behind after only one season and willfully allowing his body to become “Tumbleweed's” personal punching bag. “Uno” did a great job behind the plate and his bat was equally impressive. “Uno” hit two homeruns this season, one being an absolute bomb over the left field trees and into the playground at Mosswood Park. “Uno’s” speed on the ‘paths and consistency at the plate earned him the coveted lead-off role in the lineup, and he embraced the challenge with both arms and a ton of ginger.

    Overall, the Cinnabars came up a little short this year, by their own high standards; but it was nevertheless a great season and much fun was had by all. The ‘Bars can't wait for next year, and have warned the league that they are coming back with a vengeance. The ‘Bars have three league titles and make no mistake, they intend to make it four in 2016!

    The Pelicans

    The baby flock of Pelicans, under their Captain Matt “Boxcar” Rheinschild and grizzled veterans, Scott “Friendly Fire” Endberg and Joe “Smokey” Menard, spent the first half of the season learning the finer points of vintage base ball. Rookie Donnie Oliveira has looked impressive, hurling great innings for a large part of the season; but the Pelicans have been haunted by the crooked number innings where dropped balls and muffs pile up. The Pelicans have suffered the bane of every vintage game- the long inning in the field. Nevertheless, Nate “Bean” Underwood made your amount of capital plays in the center of the garden despite not having gone a game without being struck by a hurler. Welcome to the league, “Bean!” Kenny “The Groundhog” Wu and Ryan “Sticky” Akerberg bring the ginger to every game and show the heart and determination that keeps the flock of Pelicans together. With the arrival of Stephen “Duce” Nemy and Steven “Starfish” Starfas, combined with a few wins in the latter half of the season, including a dominant performance over the Barbary Coast, the Pelicans are poised to impress in 2016 and demonstrate that they are a team to be feared.

    Barbary Coast

    The Barbary Coast are the new boys of the league but most of the Coast are not new to the league. Many are veterans of the BAVBB; notably, Captain and ace hurler, Brody “Reverend” Romsey, who hurled a handful of complete game victories before inevitably wearing out his wing. Invaluable and indefatigable Behind and infielder, Jessie “Juice” Mallory led from the back while Dan-O “Small Plates” Owens ran the garden. In addition to absorbing fly balls, “Small Plates” informed Cranks all year with his sweet lefty swing, lovely as a morning sunrise. Rookies Sam “Badger” Hoffman, Scott “Honey Bear” Denny, Dave Winslow “Doc Spinner” Neale and Mike “Cockroach” Grafton adapted quickly to the vintage game and locked down the outfield for the Coast. “Doc” made the play of the year, chasing down a long fly and securing it backhanded over his head, while “HoneyBear” had a six-for-six day in Hayward. The antonymously named “Badger” burned up the basepaths all year. Veterans Peter “Colonel” Banks and Wes “Dread Pirate Roberts” Goodman-Levy made up the other battery and led the Coast from the strikers’ box. New boys Curtis “Dirtus” Hilger and Brian “Drillbit” Malefant locked down the left side of the infield, while Matt “Achilles Milkman” Peterson and Ferdinand “Toro” Drane rotated on the right side between various and multiple injuries. Once again “Toro” led the team in getting thrown out at the plate and elsewhere on the bases; yet he is sure to run next year, so teams be warned!

    The Coast made a midseason run at a playoff spot but hit hurdles hailing from New Almaden and Berkeley. Nevertheless they performed admirably in their first season and it is unlikely any team will make the mistake of writing them off for 2016. All to play for!

    Your Scribe,

    Alphabemricus Jackson

    The BAVBB wishes a speedy recovery to Nick “Heels” Jeffrey and thanks the many ballists who pitched in.