Week 9-Game of the Week
The Commodores are with striking distance of the top two teams. They have a match up with the Skippers pending in a few weeks , however won't see the Dirt Dawgs til the Playoffs. This weeks match up is crucial for seeding and if they can sweep the Bulls , it'll paint a solid picture for the middle of the standing and separate the top 4 from the pack. Christian Rahman has established himself as the top arm for the Commodores with Adrian Gonzalez along with Reyce Curnane making that offense relevant.
Kris Sharp has his team in contention to do something here. They're battling with the big boys and even took a game from the Skippers a few weeks ago. Julio Viera the strong armed catcher /Pitcher can do it all on the defensive side. Now if he can regain his form on the offensive side life would be good and would compliment the Bulls Power arm Sean Jones well. Offense lacks but defense wins championships. Dennis Rodman would be proud of this Bulls team so far.
Prediction: I'm going to reach out on the limb and say a split. Jones/Viera can keep it close enough for the Bulls to scratch a win out!
With all star weekend coming please update your stats , so any worthy players get consideration from the league. As this is a new rivalry against that we would like to win again.
Week 8-Game of the Week
The Tigers gave the Dirt Dawgs all they can handle this past weekend both teams played up to par, even though the umpires seemed to be over matched and had a very poor showing to the point both teams didn't even bother wasting their breath anymore in the heat!!
Tigers are a legit presence in the league and have improved greatly. Richie Mascarelli by far is the leader of this team along with Boykin who were solid all day Sunday. They can swing the bats but as predicted last week their arms are suspect. If the Tigers can out slug the skippers which isn't a easy task. They can win a ball game here and put the Dirt Dawgs in the drivers seat.
The Skippers split this past week with the Delco Bandits who are a also a tough team. If their whole team shows up then the Tigers will have a uphill fight on their hands. Donahue , Tagle and Schmoltze will lead the charge offensively for the Skips. Iller will prob take the ball in another big series for them. They need to take two here , to keep pace with the Dawgs.
Prediction: I see a Mudskipper sweep here, the Tigers went out swinging against the Dawgs and might have taken the wind out of their sails, plus i don't see the Mudskippers losing 3 weeks in a row.
Week 7-Game of the Week
Manager Pat Dunn has fired his health and fitness coach as the Dirt Dawgs have become snake bitten with injuries. Two of the teams top sluggers Stanton and Dove have been dealing with nagging injuries from week to week. HOWEVER, Pat Dunn , Higgins, Rodriguez and Wes Baylor are picking up the slack at the plate and the Dawgs keep on winning. Joe " I should've been tossed from the last game" Juliano is coming off a complete game 11k performance and Matt Edmonson took the W in the second game.
The Tigers aren't the Orioles and I believe " We'll sweep the Dawgs this year " was said by an anonymous Tigers player. DON'T POKE THE BEAR or in this case the Dawgs. Matt Raws, Juliano , Loughran , Edmonson along with Dave Gibson have been fantastic on the mound. Meanwhile the offense has been good but hasn't played any where near their potential.
The Tigers are in the middle of the Pack in the standings and these two games are huge for them to rise into the 4/5 seed for playoff implications. The return of Boykin and Masciarelli spells trouble as both can ball. Mike Anderson and Chip Chapman are healthy additions to go along with them as well. Their offense is hot but can they keep the Dawgs off the board? They're going to have to out slug them and only two teams in the league have proven that, being the Skippers and Commodores. This is almost an exact repeat of last year of when the Tigers got red hot and gave the Bulldogs trouble later in the season.
Prediction: Sweep... this is a two horse race with the Skippers and Dawgs. Too much firepower and the Tigers have motivated the Dawgs by speaking up.. Welcome to Sunday baseball in Liberty Bell men's league baseball.
Week 5-Game of the Week
Coming off a bye week and a split with the Mudskippers the Dirt Dawgs will face off against the Commodores. The Dawgs return to the confines of Eastern University which they were very tough to beat at over the past couple years. Kind of like the Washington Wizards at home if you're a NBA fan! This will be a tough task for Dawgs facing off against an unfamiliar team and then getting everything squared away for their Memorial Day AC tournament! Look for Loughran and Edmonson to take the ball for the Dawgs. Westyn Baylor is on fire along with Pat Dunn!
Conshy sits in third place and are holding their own against some of the better teams in the league. They squeezed by the Bulls then headed into their off week. Can their arms keep the Dawgs off the board ? We know their offense can put up runs quickly with Boston College Commit Reyce Curnane and Adrian Gonzalez anchoring the middle of that order!
Prediction: Dawgs sweep here to keep pace with the skippers in this two team race
Week 4-Game of the Week
A few words come to mind when these two teams are scheduled for a collision course with each other. A few being Rivalry, Championships, Sluggers and the former champs the Bulldogs who aren't even in the league anymore and will still have an impact with the players leftover! The Dawgs and Skippers have met the past three seasons in the playoffs or Championship with the Skipper winning 2 and the Bulldogs taking the 2016 title against the Dawgs! However this is a new year and new firepower has been added. I know both teams have had each other in mind before the season started, both adding talent to bolster their run at the title.
Dirt Dawgs Stanton Tentanowski, Mayhem Dove , Dunn and Westyn Baylor have been consistent for the Dawgs offense in this young season! Well known Slugga, Daniel Gavlick is heating up and will put pressure on the Skippers arms. Defense has been the key for the Dawgs which would've been one of their weaker points in previous years , has been solid! The defense has been keeping Matty Raws, Matt Edmonson, and Ryan Loughran pitch counts low and allowing them to go deep into games. If the Dawgs can get into the Skippers bullpen, it will be a long day for Liberty Bell!
The Mudskippers Ryan Donahue, Dillon Tagle ( 2016 MVP ) , Ray Schmoltze and Sean O' hara can match the Dirt Dawgs firepower with their own. All four have been premier sluggers in the league the past few years. Tagle is a pitchers dream, because he keeps runners honest while on base and has an exceptional arm behind the dish. Mike Iller and Gentry seem to be the Skippers horses on the bump and I wouldn't be mad about that, cause both are strike throwers and get people out!
Prediction: This match up can go either way, these teams are built very similar to one another. If I had to say something, I'd say a split here! Both teams are hard to sweep in any given day! It will be a Slugfest no matter who's on the bump for either teamWEEK 3 GAME OF THE WEEK
The Mudskippers haven't been challenged and are just rolling right over teams early on. Which was expected with that lineup. This weekend might be the same story different chapter , unlikely but it can happen. In their first serious test this season, I look for the skippers to try and out slug the Commodores.
The Bandits handed Conshy their first lost of the season. However the Bandits are a tough team, and Conshy could be shaking off the rust and getting familiar with one another. I won't count them out to make these two games close. It could go either way I feel. I don't see a sweep here because of the talent they have.
Prediction: I see a series split, I think these our the biggest games of the year for the league.
WEEK 2 GAME OF THE WEEK
It was a interesting opening weekend followed by a weekend off. 4 teams made statements and swept their opponents off the field. The Commodores, Dawgs, Bulls and mudskippers established themselves early this year. Key word is EARLY. Two undefeated teams will square off this week and this is why they're the game of the week.
BULLS vs Dirt Dawgs
The Bulls are off to a fast start in their opening season sweeping the Orioles. Demko, Pilchman and veteran Julio Viera anchor this offense and all had solid opening day appearances. Sean Jones the Bulls standout arm anchors this staff and had 10 plus Ks against the Orioles. However he's not facing the Orioles this week, he's facing an offense that will take pitches make you work on the mound and stretch innings out.
Matt Edmonson looked brand new as he tossed 5 shut out innings keeping the Bandits off the board. Combine him with Matty Raws and relief/Closer Jonah van be bemmelen as well as Loughran, runs can be tough to come by for the Bulls. The Dirt Dawgs top of the order is as strong as they come however Kevin Long, Jordano Rodriguez and veteran Joe Juliano had a solid opening day, making things happen at the dish. The Dawgs stretched at bats out and had both pitchers in both days combined over 300 pitches will allowed then to drive in runs.
Prediction: if Jones can limit the Dawgs to less than 2 then the Bulls have a shot to take 1 game here. However the Dawgs have been around the block more than once and are not strangers to big armed pitchers. I see a sweep here however, I see two close games.
The 2017 season is upon Us! With the winter work outside coming to a halt. It's time to throw down and let these teams play. Here are my thoughts of every game this week with some scores and predictions.
Conshy Commodores vs Delaware Valley Tigers
I personally think this is the most intriguing game of the week to start off the season. The Tigers have improved over the years and were just starting to gel last year. However it hurts that Richie Masciarelli hasn't returned but Boykin and Anderson are fully capable of driving in runs and keeping their team in a game.
The Commodores come into their inaugural game with some well known firepower. Ryan Levito and Christian Rahman will most likely get the ball for either of the two games. Both can be tough on hitters. Reyce Curnane the Boston College Comet will definitely anchor this lineup. The big lefty will have Bzozowski protecting him. If these two are in sync then it will be a long day for the Tigers.
Prediction: Commys sweep , I think the pitching makes a huge difference here.
Delco Bandits vs Dirt Dawgs
The Dirt Dawgs have had a long offseason and have the multiple championship loses years prior to use as motivation. It's a new year with the same firepower with a new outlook hopefully. Raws, Loughran and Gibson will primarily will get the ball and I don't think manager Pat Dunn is mad about that this week. Stanton Tentanowski, Dan Gavlick , Mayhem Dove will anchor the top of that line up and one is just as dangerous as the other. Dennis Higgins stick and leadership on the field will be relied as the scrappy player is one of the toughest outs in the league. Key for the Dirt Dawgs is defense here. We know they can hit and pitch but inconsistent play in the field has hurt them in the past.
Delco Bandits have a tough task in front of them, but it is week one and anything can happen.
Also a rookie team throwing their gloves in this fight. A long time familiar face to the league Chris McIntyre who played in the Pecos league will have to show leadership. This team had a good fall and are young and will compete. However expierience playing together goes along way and can beat talent. The Dawgs are talented will keep the pressure on the Bandits.
Prediction: if the Bandits can hit with the Dawgs and produce runs off mistakes, then they can take a game. The Dawgs won't be swept so I'm going with Dawgs sweep but It's not gospel.
Philadelphia Bulls vs Montgomery County Orioles
Kris Sharp is ready to start new with the Bulls, and has won a few titles in his time as a manager with the Bucks County Reds and Liberty Bell Mudskippers. Sean Jones will get the ball in one game and will be relied on to have a big season for the inaugural Bulls. Pilchman just gets on base, Billy Beane style of play! One time defensive end for the West Virginia Mountaineers Trevor Demko has dropped the pads in his second straight year and is looking to make a statement. If he can emulate Dave Rusthoven, the Bulls will have a solid day.
Montgomery County Orioles
The loss of Colin Dew the Orioles most consistent arm over years past will hurt a little. However Tony White is a capable arm for the Orioles and can keep you off balance for a few innings. Look for Dan Cymerman to rely on Josh Debeary, Matt Horgan and Ervin Faust to lighten the load of him, due to their expierience in the league. These boys don't lack character and show up every week. The problem is rome wasn't built in a day and everyone wants to win now and not give these boys a chance to build. However the Orioles have pulled off some major upsets in years past , so don't count them out.
Prediction: the Bulls will get 2 and come out strong! Unless the Orioles can keep it close , then who knows.
Mudskippers vs Nor Gwyn Wookies
The Skippers have branched out on their own, they've added some heavy artillery to replace some of the loses they've had. However Donahue, Tagle, O`Hara , Yankowitz, Iller and Drake are the faces of this team and have won and know how to win. Now add John Quigley, Mike Caron and Ray Schmoltze who are from the 2016 champs Bucks County Bulldogs. Sluggers Ryan Donahue and Tagle are the best hitters in the league along with Ray Schmoltze. Look for them carry the load of the offense along with Mike Iller. Quigley is coming off a great year and will be a solid middle of the order threat. As far as arms are concerned Caron, Donahue, Iller and Gentry will make this sunday difficult for the Wookies as well as most teams. Look for the Skippers to try new things this week and see what they got as they have alot of talent, but can they make it work.
Nor Gwyn Wookies will have their hands full this weekend in their first week in the league. However the Wookies had a decent fall despite their record. They kept teams off the scoreboard but just couldn't score themselves. The Gill brothers have a solid foundation here to build on , if they can just produce runs and keep themselves in the game. It's just a bad week for them to try and see what works as the Mudskippers will most certainly flex their muscles and make a statement to the Dirt Dawgs.
Prediction: Skippers sweep , I don't see the Wookies matching their Firepower.
The 2016 season Champs are no more, that's right! The Bucks County Bulldogs have folded but still leave their mark on the 2017 season with some of their big guns floating around and finding new homes on other teams. With that being said, the league has added three new teams that will look to make a run at the title.
Manager Pat Dunn is still chasing that first title, and has come up short in the Championship the past 4 years. This team is a very dangerous team. They've got pitching that is anchored by Matty Raws and Ryan "Lockdaddy" Loughran. Not to mention their offense is second to none with Dan Gavlick, Dennis Higgins and Stanton Tentanowski. Mayhem Dove is back in the mix as well, who will add another veteran bat to the team and be a utility guy for them.
With some talented new additions to this team, they will be a force and also will be considered Sigmund Freud’s dream team with some of the personalities on their roster. The Skippers will be coached differently this season, as Kris Sharp has passed the reigns over to the team itself. With that being said the skippers have won multiple titles and this writer thinks they will endure some growing pains with some of the personalities on that team. Ryan Donahue and Dillon Tagle (2016 MVP) will absolutely lead the charge for this team. The defunct Bulldogs heavy hitters Ray Schmoltze, John Quigley and big arm Mike Caron know how to win, and severely help the middle of that order. Will the skippers have multiple selfie Sundays or drown their sorrows on snapchat?
This team got hot last year and were absolute nightmares for the Bulldogs. Barnes boys acquired some big arms last year combined with All-star outfielder Richie Masciarelli and first Baseman Andrew Boykin, they can make a run. I really like this team as they'll scrap it out with anyone on the Diamond. They're just one arm away and a big bat away to compete for the cup. They can definitely spoil someone's year.
Dan Cymerman is rebuilding these boys. They were inches from coming to an agreement with the leftovers from the Bulldogs, but the deal couldn't be done. Which would’ve made them a top 3 or 4 team for sure? I really hope Colin Dew and Tony White come back and make these boys relevant on Sundays. Good group of young men, but need some help. If you have some talent and you're reliable, reach out to the league.
A newly formed team that participated in the Philadelphia Fall Baseball League and was a fun team to play against. They have pitching and some sluggers. Will compete and be in almost every game. However, very few teams can do what the Dirt Dawgs did, which was make a team and make a run at the title all 4 years in existence or could they. Only time will tell, but I'm hyped to see what this team can do.
Nor Gwyn Wookies
Another team from the Philadelphia Fall baseball league that has thrown their hats into the ring. I myself was very impressed with this team even though their record didn't show it. They barely let up any runs but also can't score any runs. Throughout the fall, they held several high power offenses off the board. Several players who play in the fall and in LBMBL were hesitant to play this team because you just couldn't generate offense because they field the ball as well. Do they have a breakout player on the offensive side to make things complicated for the big boys in the league?
Kris Sharp has once again started his own team after managing the Bucks County Reds/ Liberty Bell Mudskippers in which he's won a title with both. I'm intrigued in seeing what Sharp can do and bring in to make this team relevant. He's won with two teams, can he make it three? I've known him for several years, and in a few years he’ll be relevant, but not this year.. I'm sorry it's not the year of the OX/Bull.
Another new team has thrown their gloves into this fight. I'm constantly watching their roster additions because right out the gate I see Ryan Levito and Christian Rahman. Rahman pitched at Rowan and in the RVL and had success. He can shut teams down, but which Rahman will show up after a year off? I'm curious to see what this team brings to the table and future roster additions. Til that day, they're as relevant as Bill Mason being a career .300 hitter. A lot of erasers died due to Bill Mason’s stat padding.
2017 All Star Game
Just announced, the 2nd Annual All Star Game against the Penn Del league will be held once again at Gravel Hill Field on July 15th, starting at 4pm Sharp!
2017 Naba Atlantic City Baseball invitational
As many would not know , The Dirt Dawgs have competed in the Atlantic City baseball tournament for the past four years and they have seen the losing side of things for 3 of those years. Not a bad thing though because they ended up spending time with their families after failing to advance to the finals. Make no mistake about it, the Dawgs were all business when they took the trip down to the shore to battle against some of the top teams on the coast this year and still made lasting memories with their families , teammates, wives and children. Here's a little recap of what took place over the weekend..
The Dirt Dawgs are left wondering "what could have been?" after an impressive showing at the 2017 NABA Memorial Day Atlantic City Tournament. The Dawgs hit their stride at just the right time, but after reaching the Tournament Championship for the first time in franchise history, and eager to square off against the Margate Hurricanes, the rains were too much for the Margate field to handle. The Dawgs would have to settle for the satisfaction of being a Co-Finalist as no makeup date could be arranged. Below are some highlights from the tournament weekend:
Game 1: Bergen Pirates 3 - Dirt Dawgs 2: Ryan Loughran and Matt Raws combined to keep the Pirates at bay in front of a very strong defensive effort. However, the bats were pretty silent as the Dawgs could only scratch 2 across against a tough Pirates pitching staff.
Game 2: Dirt Dawgs 11 - Rochester Cardinals 1: Converted Mudskipper Mike Iller took the ball against the Rochester Cardinals in what would become the first of a "Mercy Rule" theme for the Dawgs. Iller was dominant and had control of the zone the entire day. The Dawgs again played very stingy defense, and this time the bats came to play. Newcomer Mike Kerns launched a big fly, and another Mudskipper, Anthony Kelly, lined a dinger of his own over the left field fence. This set the tone for the weekend.
Game 3: Dirt Dawgs 11 - NYC Thunder 1: Dawgs closer Dave Gibson, on full rest and coming off of an RVL No-Hitter, brought his "A" game to this playoff battle. Facing a young lineup from New York. Dave K'd 13 batters in 5 innings before giving way to some relief in the form of DeVante Parker and Nick Mulvey. The top, middle, and bottom of the lineup all contributed.
Game 4: Dirt Dawgs 11 - Bergen Pirates 1: This is not a typo. the Dawgs were out for revenge in this one, winning a 3rd straight mercy-rule shortened game by the exact same score. The HUGE story here goes to Justin Breen, as he throws the first no-hitter in Dirt Dawgs history. He could not have chosen a bigger spot to come up with a no-no. The 3 moonshot, center field bombs from Wes Baylor, Dan Gavlick, and Jordano Rodriguez were more than enough support for Breenie. The Dawgs were poised to clash with the Margate Hurricanes on Monday morning for all the marbles!
In 2014, Margate embarrassed the young Dirt Dawgs to the tune of a 17-2 beat down. The Dawgs came back fierce in 2016 to even the lifetime matchup, outslugging the Canes 12-10. This would have been an exciting rubber match with some hardware on the line, as both teams were crushing the ball at just the right time.
The Dawgs finished the tournament allowing the fewest Runs Scored, despite playing the most games. The bats came alive and the boys had a hell of a weekend in Wildwood in between games. Thanks you to the players who helped contribute to a fantastic weekend, and to the wives, girlfriends, kids, and fans who stopped out to support the squad.
We are looking forward to coming back for the Labor Day Games, but before then, The Dawgs have some unfinished business in the LBMBL! With a bolstered roster and some more tournament experience, we are looking forward to a big summer!
2016 in Review 2016 was a great season for the LBMBL. The league played a 21 game season. With three rounds of playoff baseball, all best of 3! The Bulldogs not only took home the best record during the regular season, they took home the Championship Trophy also.
Congratulations to the MVP and Cy Young award winners. Dillan Tagle and
The All Star team played against the Pendel league in a 9 inning contest. It was a fun day with some great hitting and pitching from both leagues. We will look forward to playing them again in 2017!
Retro Jersey day was another big hit. Many teams players were able to wear uniforms from their past during the games. It made for some great conversation and some great laughs when some players didn't exactly fit in them any more.
2017 Preseason Rankings