Friday October 20th 2017

Herts are National Champions

The Herts Little Leaguers are bringing the 2010 British Championships trophy back to Herts. (photo by Ward Davis)

Members and fans of Herts Baseball Club are celebrating today as the club’s youth team was crowned the 2010 British Champions. They came from behind to beat the London Mets 2-1 in the Final which proved to be yet another colossal encounter between the two teams.

This championship game was originally scheduled to be played two weeks ago as part of the National Baseball Championships on Merseyside but had to be postponed due to rain and so it was moved to the recently renovated home of the Essex Arrows in Waltham Abbey. The overnight rain left substantial amount of water on the infield surface so it took a big effort from the hosts Essex and parents and officials from London and Herts working side-by-side to get the infield ready. There may be a big rivalry on the field between Herts and London but this was a good example of the mutual respect between the two clubs and another proof of the tremendous community spirit which the game of baseball always seems to inspire.

Herts started the game nervously. Despite retiring the first two batters, London managed to take a one-run lead after two uncharacteristic errors by the Herts defence. The pressure of the occasion must have been weighing heavily on the shoulders of the Herts players as they committed four errors during the game, which was more than the total number of errors in all three of the team’s postseason games before the Final.

In the bottom of the first inning it became obvious that this was going to be a difficult battle for Herts as London starting pitcher Taichi Tsuruta started throwing flames. He worked quickly through the first and second inning allowing only one runner to get on base.

Brodie Caress came home to score the tying run for Herts in the third inning.(photo by Ward Davis)

In the bottom of the third Herts managed to tie the game. Brodie Caress got on board with a walk and eventually came around to score with aggressive running from third as the Mets infield got sucked into making the play at second on a steal by Jonny Compton-Weight from first.

Herts starter, Jesse Reinebold, was pitching with the maturity and confidence of a 15-year MLB veteran. With the game on the line he did not allow any Mets runners to get on base in the third, fourth and fifth inning retiring 9 batters in a row, 6 of which were strikeouts. He pitched a complete game striking out 10 batters, allowing only 3 hits, no walks and no earned runs on 82 pitches, 68 of which were strikes – an incredible strike-ball ratio.

The Herts fans proved that they are the loudest supporters in British baseball. (photo by Ward Davis)

With the game tied 1-1 in the bottom of the fifth, Herts once again turned on their running game. Jonny Compton-Weight reached first on a ball four wild pitch, but with the backstop standing 60 feet behind the catcher he decided not to settle for first base and made the big turn to get to second base in a mad race with London catcher, Chris Saltzgaber, who was desperately trying to retrieve the ball and throw it to second base. Compton-Weight was safe at second and Herts brought on Kieran Manning to pinch run for him. It was Manning that became one of the many heroes for Herts. He advanced to third and later took advantage of a wild pitch to come home to give Herts the lead. It may not have been pretty but a lot of credit has to be given to the London pitching staff who kept Herts batters swinging and missing, so they needed some ultra aggressive base running to take the lead in this game of very small margin for error.

Herts took this one-run lead to the final inning and all eyes were on Herts starting pitcher Jesse Reinebold. Leading off for London was their Lithuanian centerfielder, Vykintas Dulius, who put the ball in play with a scuffed hit down the third base foul line. In a desperate attempt to get the out, Herts third baseman Richard Ganster barehanded the ball but couldn’t get a good grip on the wet ball so his throw went wide of the first baseman. Dulius took advantage and found himself on second base representing the tying run with no outs. Herts retired the next batter on a ground out to first baseman Zack Longboy. This moved the London tying run to third base with one out. There are over 20 different ways to bring a runner home from third base with less than two outs so the odds were very much against Herts. Up stepped Mets third baseman Elliot Coffey and he hit a hard line drive but Herts shortstop, Nick Martinez, was in the right place at the right time to snag the ball out of the air for the second out while holding the all important runner at third. Herts needed just one more out. Very fittingly, that final out of the game was a strikeout on a nasty pitch by Jesse Reinebold sparking wild celebrations as players, coaches along with those crazy Herts fans invaded the field.

This is one of the most memorable days in the club’s 15 year history. A very proud moment for everyone connected with the club and especially for the players, coaching staff and their families who have worked so hard since losing in the final one year ago and have now managed to win the trophy with an unbeaten 10-0 record in 2010.

For more images from the 2010 National Final click here (courtesy of Ward Davis)


London Mets at Herts All-Stars
Score By Innings 1 2 3 4 5 6 R H E
London Mets 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 3 1
Herts All-Stars 0 0 1 0 1 0 2 1 4

Herts All-Stars 2, London Mets 1
Herts All-Stars London Mets
ab r h bi ab r h bi
Mikito Ariga 2b 3 0 0 0 Rintaro Suzuki ss 3 0 0 0
Carlos Casal Jr cf 2 0 0 0 Matthew Tarrant 1b 3 0 1 0
Marty Cullen Jr c 3 0 0 0 Taichi Tsuruta p-rf 3 1 1 0
Richard Ganster 3b 0 0 0 0 Vykintas Dulius cf 2 0 1 0
Nick Martinez ss 2 0 0 0 Ewan Clegg rf-p 3 0 0 0
Zack Longboy lf-1b 2 0 1 0 Elliot Coffey 3b 2 0 0 0
Jose Morillo dh 2 0 0 0 Chris Saltzgaber c 3 0 0 0
Brody Caress rf 0 1 0 0 Kota Minami 2b 2 0 0 0
(b5) Lewis Green rf-lf 1 0 0 0 (t5) V Sub 1 2b 0 0 0 0
Jonny Compton-Weight 1b 0 0 0 0 Kenta Reed lf 2 0 0 0
(b5) Kieran Manning pr-lf 0 1 0 0
Jesse Reinebold p 0 0 0 0
TEAM TOTALS 15 2 1 0 TEAM TOTALS 23 1 3 0
E: Mikito Ariga(2), Marty Cullen Jr, Richard Ganster, Chris Saltzgaber. LOB: Herts
All-Stars 4, London Mets 6. SB: Brody Caress(2), Richard Ganster, Jonny
Compton-Weight, Kieran Manning.
Herts All-Stars IP H R ER BB SO
Jesse Reinebold W 6.00 3 1 0 0 10
London Mets
Taichi Tsuruta L 4.33 1 2 2 5 8
Ewan Clegg 0.67 0 0 0 1 2
HBP: by Jesse Reinebold (Elliot Coffey). . . . . . WP: Taichi Tsuruta(2). T: 1:35. A:
110.


London Mets at Herts All-Stars
Score By Innings 1 2 3 4 5 6 R H E
London Mets 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 3 1
Herts All-Stars 0 0 1 0 1 0 2 1 4

Herts All-Stars 2, London Mets 1
Herts All-Stars London Mets
ab r h bi ab r h bi
Mikito Ariga 2b 3 0 0 0 Rintaro Suzuki ss 3 0 0 0
Carlos Casal Jr cf 2 0 0 0 Matthew Tarrant 1b 3 0 1 0
Marty Cullen Jr c 3 0 0 0 Taichi Tsuruta p-rf 3 1 1 0
Richard Ganster 3b 0 0 0 0 Vykintas Dulius cf 2 0 1 0
Nick Martinez ss 2 0 0 0 Ewan Clegg rf-p 3 0 0 0
Zack Longboy lf-1b 2 0 1 0 Elliot Coffey 3b 2 0 0 0
Jose Morillo dh 2 0 0 0 Chris Saltzgaber c 3 0 0 0
Brody Caress rf 0 1 0 0 Kota Minami 2b 2 0 0 0
(b5) Lewis Green rf-lf 1 0 0 0 (t5) V Sub 1 2b 0 0 0 0
Jonny Compton-Weight 1b 0 0 0 0 Kenta Reed lf 2 0 0 0
(b5) Kieran Manning pr-lf 0 1 0 0
Jesse Reinebold p 0 0 0 0
TEAM TOTALS 15 2 1 0 TEAM TOTALS 23 1 3 0
E: Mikito Ariga(2), Marty Cullen Jr, Richard Ganster, Chris Saltzgaber. LOB: Herts
All-Stars 4, London Mets 6. SB: Brody Caress(2), Richard Ganster, Jonny
Compton-Weight, Kieran Manning.
Herts All-Stars IP H R ER BB SO
Jesse Reinebold W 6.00 3 1 0 0 10
London Mets
Taichi Tsuruta L 4.33 1 2 2 5 8
Ewan Clegg 0.67 0 0 0 1 2
HBP: by Jesse Reinebold (Elliot Coffey). . . . . . WP: Taichi Tsuruta(2). T: 1:35. A:
110.

Our recruitment campaign ahead of the new season continues and in fact new youth (4 to 16) and adult players (14 and over) can join at any point during the year. The club welcomes boys and girls, men and women, from complete beginners to elite players. Click here for more details or contact us.

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