- Here we go folks - LA vs. Iowa City for all the marbles......this one promises to be a good one!!
- LA overcomes a 4-1 defecit in the 8th of game 1 and takes the
5-4 victory walk-off style. The big blast was a 3-run homer by Shock castoff Alberto
Puente in the 8th to tie it, and the game winning hit was by Clay
Stanley, which plated Matt Crawford who reached of CF Victor Bennett's
error. LA's 1-2 punch at the back of the bullpen, Valdes and James
combined for 4 innings, 1 run.
The story of game 2 was the brilliant performance of 37 year-old vet Fritz Mullin, who pitched 6 shutout innings, surrendering only 3 hits. Jamie "Fire" Byrne hits his 4th homer of the post season in LA's 4-1 win.
The Dodgers jump out to the commanding 3-0 series lead on the back of SP Charlie Rushford, who earned his 4th win of the playoffs in going 7 innings, giving up only 3 hits and 1 run. Tony "The Crooner" Bennett delivers a 3-run homer in LA's 6-1 win.
With Iowa down 2-0 in the 6th and champagne a-chillin' in the visitors' clubhouse, the Rounder bats finally come alive to score 4 in the 6th. Sammy Cochrane's 2 run shot was the closest thing to a Dave Roberts moment, and Clinton Puffer goes 6 effective innings in the 4-2 victory that stave's off elimination.
LA pitching did their part in game 5, as Iowa collects only one hit for the game. But that hit was a big 2-run single by Bob Newson, set-up by 2 costly LA errors, one by Geovany Molina and the other by Bennett. The usually sure-handed Bennett commits his 6th miscue of the post-season. Iowa clings to the life raft with the 2-0 victory on a brilliant 8 inning outing by Elrod "Rum &" Coke.
LA goes up 3-0 early in game 6 on a solo-shot by Bennett and a Molina 2-run single off Bruce "Money" Mullens, as the wearers of game 5's goat horns try to make amends. But Iowa puts up 2 in the 5th and another 2 in the 6th to take the 4-3 lead. Light-hitting SS Felipe Andrus (.244, 1 HR for the regular season) hit the 2-run HR to cut LA's lead to 1, Sammy Cochrane hit the double to tie it, and Al Posednik hit the go-ahead sac fly. Vinny Cortes, who was bumped from the rotation when "Money" Mullens returned, pitched 3 shutout innings of relief and Sal Jacobson earned his 4th save of the playoffs in the 4-3 win. Iowa is making the unlikely happen as they win three staight to send the series to the deciding game.
Iowa comes out of the gate strong and pummel Charlie "Mount" Rushford for 5 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks, and they never look back. Clinton Puffer gives his team 3 gutsy innings on only 3 days rest giving up only 1 run. 5th starter Jerry May comes on in relief to give his team 4 shutout innings and earn the historic win, completing the Rounders' dramatic series comeback to defend their title. Curtis Lewis hit his 5th homer of the playoffs, a crushing 3-run job.
LA had a terrific season, and were just innings away from the title. They have a team of veterans with great make-up, so there is little doubt that they will be back to try to finish the job next season. Great job!
Iowa keeps their trophy and all bets have it that it will even tougher next season to pry in away from them. Puffer, Coke and Mullens all return next season, and they aren't losing any of their big guns in the line-up either. For the season, they were tops in the league in team ERA, runs against and opponent on-base %. They were first in fielding % and first in plus plays, and 4th best in minus plays. Runs are tough to come by against this team! On the offensive side, they manufactured runs as they were 3rd in the league in OBP and 1st in steals. All in all, this was another great performance by a great team, as they go 7-0 in elimination games this post-season. Great job Iowa, congratulation on a victory for the ages!