Newark Pilots used a come from behind win to beat the Elmira Pioneers
5-3 to advance to the PGCBL Championship series against the Amsterdam
Mohawks starting tonight.
matchup with the Mohawks will be a rematch of the 2011 Championship
which saw the Pilots emerge as the Champions during the inaugural
season of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League. This time
around, the Mohawks will enter the game as back-to back champions and
are well rested following a two game sweep of the Mohawk Valley
will also be the fourth consecutive year where the Mohawks have
played for the PGCBL Championship. But the history and consecutive
streak doesn’t mean that much to Amsterdam Head Coach Keith Griffin
because every team is different from the one before them.
is this team’s championship series,” Griffin said about if there
was any significance playing for the possibility of a third
consecutive PGCBL title. “We’re not defending anything. We got
three or four guys back from last year’s team; if we had last
year’s guys back it would be consecutive. This is a whole new year.
don’t look at our team is trying to win three straight; this is a
whole new group of guys and a whole new coaching staff so hopefully
we’ll play well and if we do we’ll be in good shape.”
the series East Division Series, the Mohawks used a walk-off in the
bottom of the ninth to win the first game and used a stellar pitching
performance in game two to cruise to a 7-1 win and a spot in the
played really well in the Eastern Division Championship, I thought we
swung the bats well and the pitching was outstanding,” Griffin
far this year, the Pilots and the Mohawks have faced each three times
with the Pilots leading the season series 2-1. But for Coach Griffin,
the numbers don’t tell anything and says that whichever team plays
the best will win the series.
games will be won and lost on who played the best in the series. If
we play the best then we’ll win and if they play better than we do,
then they’ll win,” he said. “I think both those teams [Elmira
and Newark] are very good, but if we play like we should and like
we’re capable of, we’ll win it.”
added that he already knows which pitchers he wants to start in the
Championship and will throw Ryan Clark in game one. In the regular
season, Clark started seven games and pitched to a 3-0 record with a
2.31 ERA. He had 37 strikeouts in 35 innings pitched.
Blatch is most likely to pitch game two with Zack Brown’s name in
the mix as well. Blatch has been impressive this season in the PGCBL
with a record 5-1 with 1.80 ERA and has struck out 37. In his final
regular season start, Blatch tossed the PGCBL’s second no-hitter in
the series goes to a third game, Griffin said whoever doesn’t start
game two could start game three or E.J. Ashworth could be the Mohawks
starter for that game.
the Pilots, Jayson Yano is fresh off winning the PGCBL’s Pitcher of
the Year award and will likely be a starter for one of the
championship games. Head Coach Mike Armstrong also received the 2014
PGCBL Coach of the Year award.
dropped their first game of the West Division Championship against
Elmira and won its next two games to advance, including winning Game
2 in Elmira.
the Pilots repeat their performance from 2011 and take over the
defending back-to-back champs, or will Amsterdam continue their
dominance and win a third straight PGCBL title? These next three days
will be interesting as these two clubs will go at it like two