2004 Summer Season
American League Champions

PCBL American Division Championship
Sunday, 8/29/04 - 2:30 PM @ JetHawk Stadium
So Cal Quakes vs Barracudas

Game Summary
by Scott Sweet

Since 1996 the Pacific Coast Baseball League has had the ultimate pleasure of holding the PCBL Championships at beautiful Lancaster Municipal aka JetHawk Stadium. Whether you were playing or just spectating this Sunday, The Hanger has proven once again to be the prime facility for our coveted Championship Games.

With the second championship game of the day scheduled for a 2:30 start and temperatures topping the century mark, it was apparent that this day at JetHawk Stadium would have one definite similarity from years past - the heat. But even searing temperatures weren't enough to distract anyone from the main event on Sunday.... championship baseball in The Hangar!

The second game on tap this championship game day would be our American Division Championship between the visiting Quakes (15-4-1) against the home team #1 seed Barracudas (16-4). The Quakes got their offense going in a hurry; as lead-off hitter Steve Kracow doubles to start off the contest. With 1 out, Wes Hutchison doubles home Kracow to give the Quakes an early 1-0 lead. John Haymond follows with a single, scoring Hutchison to put the Quakes up 2-0. Ted Maier is the next batter, and he singles to put 2 on and 1 out for Mike Bench. Bench singles home Haymond to extend the Quakes early lead to 3-0. They get 5 hits in their first 6 at bats, putting the Barracuda's starting pitcher, James DuPrey in immediate jeopardy in this, the games 1st inning.

Mike Roux comes up next for the Quakes. With 1 out and 2 on, he is hit by a pitch; loading the bases for Vince Iuculano. He singles in 2 runs to put the Quakes up 5-0. Matt Bench flied to right, bringing up Steve Kracow who started off the charge with his double to start the game. Kracow singles for his second hit of the inning, scoring a run to add to the Quakes lead - now up 6-0. That would end the day for DuPrey who would end up surrendering 6 runs on 7 hits in the long top half of the 1st inning. He is relieved by Seth Schornick, who hits the first batter he faces, Tim Casagrande. Despite the hit batter, he retires Wes Hutchison who flies out for the long-awaited 3rd out.

The Barracudas would fail to score in the bottom half of the 1st inning, as would the Quakes in the top of the 2nd. With 2 out in the bottom of the 2nd, Mike Greenwald doubled to keep the inning alive for the Barracudas. Manny Miranda followed with a single, scoring Greenwald for the Barracudas 1st run of the game. Brett Emma would fly out to left for the final out. 6-1 Quakes at the end of 2 complete.

The game would go scoreless until the bottom of the 4th inning, when the Barracudas‚ Chris Landeen hit a solo homer with 1 out in the inning. Adam Smith followed with a double, but would be left on base as the next 2 batters would go in order - Quakes up 6-2.

The Quakes would fail to score in the top of the 5th inning, giving the Barracudas yet another opportunity to close the gap. Manny Miranda leads off the inning with a solo homer to cut the lead to 3 - now down 6-3. With 1 out, Ole Olson reached base on an error by the shortstop. Danny Larson followed with a double, scoring Olson to close within 2. Justin Collins stepped to the plate and provided the game-tying punch - a 2 run homer; to bring the game even at 6 a piece. With 1 out and the bases now empty, Dave Luftman doubles to continue the Barracuda rally. Starting pitcher Freddie Libertino is relieved of pitching duties by Gill Hernandez, who comes in to face Chris Landeen who homered in his last at-bat. He singles home Luftman for the go-ahead run, Cudas now lead 7-6. The next batter would strike out, bringing up Brian Greenwald who singles. Brother Mike Greenwald followed with his 2nd double of the day; scoring his sibling to put the Cudas up 8-6. They end up settling for 6 runs in the 5th inning; sending the Quakes up in the top half of the 6th inning now having to play catch-up.

Wes Hutchison leads of the Quakes 6th with a double, his 3rd double of the game. The next batter is John Haymond, who singles to put runners at the corners with nobody out. The next batter grounds out; bringing up Mike Bench with 1 out and 2 on. He promptly slaps a single to score 2; tying the game at 8. The next 2 batters would go in order, bringing the Barracudas up in the bottom of the 6th looking to retake the lead.

Ole Olson leads off the inning with a single, his 2nd hit of the game. Danny Larson follows with his 2nd double of the game to score Olson; retaking the lead for the Barracudas - up 9-8. Justin Collins is next to bat and he singles to put 2 on with nobody out. Dave Luftman steps up to the plate next. But before he even takes a pitch, a balk is called on pitcher Gil Hernandez; sending Collins to 2nd and Larson home - Barracudas up 10-8. Luftman singles home Collins for the 3rd and final run of the inning. Barracudas up 11-8 through 6 complete at The Hangar.

The Quakes get another opportunity in the 7th, sending up Matt Bench who doubles to start the inning. Steve Kracow answers with a double of his own, scoring Bench to cut the lead to 2, down 11-9. With 1 out, Wes Hutchison singles for his 4th hit of the game. The next batter would fly out, bringing up Ted Maier with 2 out and 2 on. Maier singles home a run to reduce the lead to a single run - now trailing 11-10.

The Barracudas fail to score in the bottom of the 7th and the Quakes come up empty in the top of the 8th, leaving the Barracudas with a chance to extend upon their slim 1-run lead. They start the bottom of the 8th at the top of their order; with Ole Olson being hit by a pitch. Danny Larson struck out, followed by Justin Collins who walks. The next batter grounds into a fielder‚s choice, bringing up Chris Landeen with 2 out and 2 on. He singles home a run, making way for Adam Smith to help increase the Barracuda‚s lead. Smith walks to load the bases for Brian Greenwald. Greenwald hit‚s the jackpot with a bases-clearing triple, then scores himself for good measure on an overthrow. The Barracudas come up with 5 big runs in the 8th to extend their lead to 16-10.

The Quakes enter the 9th inning knowing well the hill they would need to climb to overtake the run-happy ‚Cudas.

Wes Hutchison would start off the 9th inning by flying out to right, ending his brilliant day of hitting at 4 for 6. John Haymond was next at bat and was hit by a pitch. After a short game delay, it was determined that Haymond was hit batter #4 charged to Seth Schornick; meaning that by rule he would need to be pulled as pitcher. Schornick is replaced by Justin Collins, who takes the mound against Ted Maier who singles to put 2 on with 1 out. The next batter was Mike Bench, who singled to drive home a run. Another run would score on account of a balk called on Collins. Mike Roux then flew to center for the 2nd out. Vince Iuculano was the next batter with 2 out and 1 on. He doubles home a run, bringing up Matt Bench; who follows with a single and yet another RBI in the inning. Quakes now trailing by 2 with 2 outs in the top of the 9th inning and the tying run at the plate.

However, the drama would be short-lived as Barracudas pitcher Justin Collins records the game-winning strikeout to start the celebration for the Barracudas. They find themselves on the winning end of this rather high-scoring affair; thereby earning themselves the right to be named the 2004 PCBL American Division Champions! Congratulations to the Barracudas for digging their way out of an early hole to capture the victory and the title!

Game Length: 2:40pm - 6:25pm (3 hrs 45 min)

Attendance: 150+

Game Time Temps: HOT!

Umpires: (HP) John Klosterman, (1B) Victor Sanchez, (2B) Jason Heckathorn, (3B) Chris Chegwin

Special Thank You to our announcer, Scott "Harry Carey" Keene.