Buzzilinear: PBL Championship Preview

Posted July 27, 2009


Buzzilinear: PBL Championship Preview
Leduc swept season series 3-0:
Wednesday, May 20 – 3-2 for Leduc
Thursday, June 4 – 2-1 for Leduc
Wednesday, June 5 – 6-5 for Leduc (8)

The lowdown

It’s the age-old battle of experience and current champions versus the up-and-comers as Leduc gets a chance to revenge last year’s semi-final loss to Bardo. But this time, Leduc gets home advantage.

And throw out the regular season stats, too, as a series sweep in favour of the Leduc Milleteers doesn’t quite tell the whole story.

All three games were decided by just one run and the final game went to extra innings.

Both teams have pitchers who have been doing great jobs this year. Steve Pahl and Scott Peterson for Leduc and Donny Oslund and Chris Mittlestadt for Bardo are likely starters, but others could fill in or take the place depending on coaching decisions.

The keys

Leduc has only dropped one home game all season and has home advantage in the championship since Bardo knocked off first place Camrose in the semi-finals. Bardo cannot afford to lose their home game.

Besides game locations, the Athletics need to find their bats if they plan on beating the Milleteers who pride themselves on defence and pitching. 

Team Comparisons

Pitching edge: Leduc – Starters have better numbers, but edge could be overcome if Bardo hurlers can come through and get the defence they have gotten in the past two weeks.

Defensive edge: Leduc – Bardo has fumbled and bumbled the ball around most of the season until the stretch drive. Leduc on the other hand is pretty solid and is counted on to keep the games low-scoring with the offence they bring.

Offensive edge: Bardo – Veteran hitters must come through for Bardo to give them a shot. If Bardo’s offence can’t find a way to crack Leduc’s pitching staff, it could be a quick series.

Experience edge: Bardo – Maybe this one’s a little overrated as many of Leduc’s players have competed at high levels in big games before. But Bardo’s age and history could give them a little bit of an edge. They’re also the defending champions, have won two of the last three PBL titles and have 12-time PBL champion Ray Lehman at the helm. We’ll have to wait and see if his leg injury has healed in time for the final.

Posted on July 27, 2009 by Jason Buzzell

 

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