2019 PBL Championship Preview

The Pennant winning Holden Blue Jays will take on the defending PBL Champion Armena Royals for the 2019 PBL Championship. On Tuesday night the Armena Royals completed the series comeback to defeat the Rosalind Athletics and move on to the 2019 PBL Championship Series which will begin on Thursday August 6 in Vegreville.  

After losing game one on a walk off home run on the road in Rosalind, the Royals bounced back in a big way with a huge 11-2 win over the A’s in game two at Anniversary Park in Armena. The series turning point was that game two win to keep their season alive, much like they did in the 2018 PBL Championship Series versus the Leduc Milleteers. Veteran pitcher David Ritz would keep the Athletics bats guessing all night while the offence took advantage of some poor Rosalind defensive play to even the series and set up Tuesday night’s game three. 

Details on the decisive game three victory by the Royals are scarce but a Tweet by the Rosalind Athletics alluded to another great game played between these two teams. Once again the Athletics had an opportunity for some magic with the tying run at third base and the winning run at second, but on this night the clutch hit didn’t come and their season came to an abrupt end. 

The Royals on the other hand will now gear up for a meeting with the Holden Blue Jays which is set for Thursday night in Vegreville at 7pm. Game one will likely feature Jays ace Kyle Muzechka against what many fans feel will be Royals knuckleballer Ian Sherbaniuk. Holden is expected to have Kyle Muzechka throw game one and game three (if a third game is necessary) but a game two starter is less certain. In their PBL Semi-Final Series it was a combination of Grayson Soprovich and Randall Ziegler, something the Jays could one again deploy in the PBL Championship Final. In their 2018 Championship run the Royals went with Sherbaniuk, Galvin and Morris for games one, two and three and could very easily have three different starters in this year’s PBL Championship Series. 

Armena vs Holden Playoff History (2010-2018)

2018 – Royals win semi-final series 2-1

2014 – Jays win semi-final series 2-1

Zenan Sherbaniuk scores a run before Jays catcher Allan Ziegler can get the tag down during game one of their 2018 PBL Semi-Final Series

With 130 runs scored in 15 games during the regular season, the Royals had the league’s best producing offence. They will meet the league’s best pitching/defence in the Holden Blue Jays, who allowed only 44 runs over the 16 games that constituted their regular season. In their PBL Semi-Final Series the Holden Blue Jays scored the second most runs in a sweep since 2002 when they scored 25 runs on the Edmonton Expos. The Royals/Athletics series featured two games that were decided by one run and that came down to the final batter.

Armena vs Holden: 2019 Regular Season

Thursday May 30 – Armena wins 7-4 at Anniversary Park

Tuesday June 11 – Holden wins 6-2 at Holden Recreation Grounds

Everyone is expecting another great PBL Championship Series in 2019, if the regular season games this year between these two teams and their 2018 PBL Semi-Final Series is any indication, fans should expect a three game series. The Blue Jays will be looking for only the second PBL Championship since the late 1970’s for the team, while the Royals will be looking for their seventh PBL title dating back to their first one in 1984 and third title since 2015. Through an incomplete history fo the PBL the Armena Royals/Armena Axemen franchise has the second most PBL titles trailing only the Ryley Rebels with their twelve titles from the mid-1970s until their last one in 2014. Full historical information has yet to be uncovered from the mid-1950s until the late-1970s, so if anyone has any concrete information on standings, stories and photos, please let us know. 

2019 PBL Semi-Final Series Recaps:

(1) Holden Blue Jays vs (4) Edmonton Expos

Game One – Holden wins 12-1 (F/5)

Game Two – Holden wins 13-5

 

(2) Rosalind Athletics vs (3) Armena Royals

Game One – Rosalind wins 3-2 (F/8)

Game Two – Armena wins 11-2

Game Three – Armena wins 5-4

 

Most Runs Scored By A Team In A Series Sweep

30 – Rosalind Athletics over Leduc Milleteers (2017 SF)

25 – Holden Blue Jays over Edmonton Expos (2019 SF)

24 – Armena Axemen over Ryley Brewers (2007 SF)

23 – Armena Axemen over Camrose Roadrunners (2003 F)

22 – Leduc Milleteers over Ryley Rebels (2010 F)

21 – Armena Royals over Rosalind Athletics (2015 F)

20 – Camrose Roadrunners over Chipman Crackerjacks (2003 SF)

19 – Armena Royals over Ryley Rebels (2012 SF)

19 – Bardo Athletics over Armena Axemen (2006 F)

18 – Armena Axemen over Ardrossan Steelers (2004 SF)

18 – Armena Royals over Lamont Steelers (2002 SF)

17 – Armena Royals over Beaumont Angels (2015 SF)

17 – Camrose Colts over Armena Axemen (2005 F)

17 – Armena Royals over Ryley Brewers (2002 F)

17 – Ryley Brewers over Ryley Rebels (2002 SF)

16 – Camrose Roadrunners over Armena Axemen (2007 F)

15 – Leduc Milleteers over Rosalind Athletics (2018 SF)

15 – Holden Blue Jays over Bardo Athletics (2013 SF)

15 – Camrose Roadrunners over Ryley Brewers (2008 SF)

14 – Leduc Milleteers over Armena Royals (2013 SF)

14 – Leduc Milleteers over Ryley Rebels (2011 SF)

14 – Leduc Milleteers over Ryley Rebels (2009 SF)

13 – Leduc Milleteers over Bardo Athletics (2012 SF)

13 – Camrose Colts over Ryley Brewers (2005 SF)

13 – Armena Axemen over Bardo Athletics (2003 SF)

12 – Armena Axemen over Bardo Athletics (2005 SF)

11 – Rosalind Athletics over Ryley Rebels (2016 SF)

9 – Ryley Rebels over Leduc Milleteers (2014 SF)

7 – Leduc Milleteers over Holden Blue Jays (2013 F)

7 – Bardo Athletics over Camrose Roadrunners (2009 SF)

5 – Holden Blue Jays over Camrose Roadrunners (2011 SF)

 

PBL Championship History

Complete history 2000 – 2019

Partial History pre-2000

 

Holden Blue Jays

2017 – lost 2-1 to Rosalind Athletics

2014 – lost 2-1 to Ryley Rebels

2013 – lost 2-0 to Leduc Milleteers

2011 – lost 2-1 to Leduc Milleteers 

1993 – lost to Ryley Rebels

1992 – won vs Ryley Rebels

1991 – lost to Tofield Lakers

1981 – lost to Camrose Roadrunners

1979 – lost to Camrose Roadrunners

 

Armena Royals

2018 – won 2-1 vs Leduc Milleteers

2016 – lost 2-1 to Rosalind Athletics

2015 – won 2-0 vs Rosalind Athletics

2012 – lost 2-1 to Leduc Milleteers

2007 – lost 2-0 to Camrose Roadrunners (as Armena Axemen)

2006 – lost 2-0 to Bardo Athletics (as Armena Axemen)

2005 – lost 2-0 to Camrose Colts (as Armena Axemen)

2004 – won 2-1 vs Camrose Colts (as Armena Axemen)

2003 – won 2-0 vs Camrose Roadrunners (as Armena Axemen)

2002 – won 2-0 vs Ryley Brewers 

1984 – won 2-1 vs Ryley Rebels

Posted in Armena Royals, Holden Blue Jays, Kris, PBL