It was another year where the streak was supposed to end. A year when Leduc looked beatable most nights and Holden and Armena had seemingly figured out how to slay the giant after blowing it the past two years.
But it didn’t happen – for either of them.
Leduc did exactly what they’ve done the last three years. Found a way to win. Plain and simple.
They rely on their pitching and defence, plus uncanny clutch hitting. No team in the league is better at stringing together the timely hits from 1-9 in their order. Sometimes it’s a big inning midway through the game. Sometimes it’s late in the game from the unlikeliest of hitters.
In the regular season, Leduc lost games to Armena twice, Bardo, Holden and Ryley – what they coined a “disastrous regular season.” But it was their ability to never beat themselves, their pitching to never let them down and their defense to generally make the next big play even if they’ve made one or two errors before.
In the first round, the Milleteers seemed beatable. Their big bats in the middle of the order were quiet and their defence suspect. But Jon Anstey shut down the best regular season offence in the league in game one and the defence was positioned perfectly on every ball in play. Armena walks propelled the Leduc offense in game two. The final then sounded more like “Milleteers baseball.”
During last year’s “Best PBL Franchise Ever” poll, Leduc didn’t get as much love as they hoped. Nicknamed “Le-douche” for their cocky and confident attitude and prepotency to flaunt the “rings” and berate umpires when things aren’t going well, it’s this expectation they will win, which helps them defeat the rest of us every year.
Even on your best night and what they feel is their worst, you can barely scratch out a win. They are tenacious. Their pitching depth unmatched. No team has played in more close ball games win-or-lose the past six years than Leduc. It’s this experience and expectations and confidence that makes them so tough to beat.
We may not want to admit it, and the way you go about it may drive a few of us crazy, but we tip our caps to you for doing something quite remarkable. Five in a row now. An amazing feat.