After a slow start to Sunday’s action at the WWBA fall championship, caused by overnight rains that resulted in delays on every field and a significantly revamped schedule, the pace has quickened considerably on the final day of pool play.
By 3 p.m., 11 of the 16 playoff berths had been determined. All pool play games that were originally scheduled for today will be played, with the last two games scheduled for 9:30 p.m.
All the playoff games are now scheduled for Monday, meaning that the two teams that reach the championship game will play four games Monday. The eight Round of 16 games will start at 8 a.m., the quarter-finals are set for 10:30 a.m., the semi-finals for 1 p.m., and the final for 3:30 p.m.
Only pool winners qualify for the playoffs and the latest teams to advance are the two pre-tournament favorites—the Braves Scout Team and the Texas Scout Team Yankees. The Braves (3-1) defeated New York’s South Troy/Youth Service team 4-1 to clinch Pool K, while the Yankees blanked the Temecula (Calif.) Boxers 5-0 to wrap up Pool I.
Should the Braves and Texas Scout Teams, with some of the best high school talent in the country on both teams, win their first-round playoff games, they would meet in one of the quarter-finals.
Outfielder/righthander Wes Hatton (Norco, Calif.) powered the Braves Scout Team to its latest win with a double and triple over the center fielder’s head, and also took the mound, where he struck out the only hitter he faced to earn a save. He was clocked at 92 mph.
Outfielder Jake Miller (Houston) led the Texas Scout Team to its win with a three-run homer, while Class of 2009 righthanders Andrew Walter (Peoria, Ariz.) and Shawn Blackwell (League City, Texas), both of whom touched 90, combined on a three-hitter with no walks and 11 strikeouts.
The other team not previously identified to qualify for the playoffs is the Louisiana All-Stars (3-0-1 in Pool L). They wrapped up their pool with a 4-2 over the Lids Indiana Bulls as outfielder Cade LeBlanc (Baker, La.) drove in four of his team’s five runs with a single and two doubles.
Washington’s Northwest Timberjacks (3-0-1) has completed play in Pool C, but has not officially qualified for the playoffs pending the St. Louis Pirates’ game later this afternoon against the Bellaire (Texas) Off-Season Cardinals. If the Pirates (2-0-1) win by shutout, they advance. If the Pirates win but allow two or more runs, Northwest advances. If the Pirates win and allow one run, the teams will need to resort to a third tie-breaker (most runs scored) as they will have the same record and same number of runs allowed.
The Timberjacks, while technically a Pacific Northwest team, have only seven players from Washington on their roster. They picked up seven players from Georgia, including highly-ranked outfielders Alex Glenn (McDonough, Ga.) and Braxton Lane (Tyrone, Ga.)—two of the fastest players in the 2009 draft class. Glenn has been clocked at 6.22 seconds in the 60-yard dash, and Lane at 6.25.
In a 16-2 clinching win over PG USA Royal, Glenn scored three runs and stole four bases—all without the benefit of a hit.
Tomorrow’s first-round playoff games match the following teams:
TOP HALF OF BRACKET
Dallas Tigers (4-0 in Pool A) vs. Pennsylvania’s All-Star Baseball Academy (4-0 in Pool B)
California’s San Gabriel Valley Arsenal (3-0-1 in Pool D) vs. Pool C (undetermined)
South Florida Bandits (3-0 in Pool E with one game remaining) vs. Pool F (undetermined)
Florida’s Diamond Vision Elite (3-0 in Pool G with one game remaining) vs. Pool H (undetermined)
BOTTOM HALF OF BRACKET
Texas Scout Team Yankees (3-1 in Pool I) vs. Pool J (undetermined)
Braves Scout Team (3-1 in Pool K) vs. Louisiana All-Stars (3-0-1 in Pool L)
Georgia’s Team Elite (4-0 in Pool M with one game remaining) vs. Royals Baseball Club (3-0 in Pool N with one game remaining)
Illinois’ Cangelosi Baseball (3-0 in Pool O with one game remaining) vs. Pool P (undetermined)