You may remember last year we had regular baseball updates from Neil Boyd of the Belfast Northstars. Now after a period of change and expansion, they are back with three baseball teams (Northstars, Hornets and Buccaneers) as well as a softball team (Angels) all fighting it out in their respective leagues.
They are also back with an improved website to reflect the change (www.belfastbaseball.co.uk) and each club has Facebook and twitter accounts (@NorthstarsBB, @BelfastBucs, @BelfastHornets and @Belfast_Angels)
Here’s the first new update!
Stars look to climb standings
The Wednesday night series will continue in Belfast tonight as the Belfast Northstars and the Belfast Hornets will be hoping the weather will be more settled than in previous days.
The Hornets (8-1) will be looking to cement their position at the top of Baseball Ireland B league North by continuing their impressive run (their only loss this season being as result of a forfeited game) while the Northstars will be no doubt be looking to improve on their currently underachieving 4-7 record.
This will be the fourth time the clubs have met this year with the expansion team taking the spoils each time. In the first tilt the Stars were the architects of their own demise, committing 14 errors on the day. The Hornets would explode in the last inning for 11 runs; the heart of their offense (Stephen Hunter, Mark Smith and Colin Woods) combining for 14 RBI.
The second game would be a pitcher’s duel between Smith (7H, 5R, 3ER, 2BB, 10K) and Melvin Woods (6H, 6R, 4ER, 8BB, 12K) and with the Northstars trailing by 3 going into the sixth, Ian Walker and Will Mitchell would plate to make it a one run game but that was as close as the Stars would get. Mitchell would continue his impressive season (0.419 BA, 18 RBI, 8 SB) as he would be given the ball in game 3.
Mitchell would have a solid outing on the mound, allowing 3 runs over 5 innings (as well as having the lone RBI for his team) but the Hornets would have too much again offensively, this time coming from Stephen Rogan (3 RBI) and rookie Joshua Cuthbert (2 RBI).
Moving forward coach Darwin Sanchez should take heart in a strong nucleus of a team with himself (0.500 BA, 20 RBI), Melvin Woods (0.531 BA, 17 RBI, 16 SB), the ever-improving David Mundarain (0.455 BA, 8 RBI, 13 SB), Mitchell, Sean McMahon and Alex Barboza as they look to slow down the Hornets who will be without catcher John Want (0.429 BA) although with Smith and Colin Woods (0.387 BA, 3 HR, 14RBI) still lurking in the heart of the Hornets lineup, it’s an unenviable task.
The game starts at 7pm at Hydebank playing fields.
By Neil Boyd
Be sure to check out the Facebook pages and twitter feeds for the teams of the Belfast Baseball and Softball Club – The Belfast Northstars (@NorthstarsBB) , The Belfast Buccaneers (@BelfastBucs), The Belfast Hornets (@BelfastHornets) and The Belfast Angels Softball Club (@Belfast_Angels).