The Herts Red Sox got exactly what they needed to stay alive in the race for the Herts Little League title. They won both their games while at the same time the joint leaders, the Cubs and the Yankees, dropped one and two games, respectively. This means that going into the final day of the 2008 season, all three teams are still very much in with a chance of becoming the 2008 champions.
To start the day, the table-topping Herts Cubs were stunned by bottom of the table Blue Jays. A combination of solid hitting from a rejuvenated Blue Jays batting lineup and masterful pitching by Alex Ringrose secured the win for the Jays. They have really come alive over the last few weeks and despite being out of the running, they are causing an absolute mayhem with the ambitious plans of the teams above them in the standings.
This meant that the Herts Yankees had the chance to jump above the Cubs, but they were caught up in a classic pitching duel against the Red Sox. Mikito Ariga for the Sox and Marty Cullen Jr had locked horns on the mound matching each other’s zeros, inning-after-inning. The game went into extra innings. The pressure was on and the Red Sox held their nerve to clinch it 1-0.
In the second games of the day, the Red Sox picked up another priceless victory, this time against the Blue Jays. In a spirited come-back in the bottom of the last inning, the Jays scored three runs after some clutch-hitting from brothers Nicolas and Declan Carlean and Jays slugger Storm Frisby. But it wasn’t enough as Alec Walker picked up a groundball at third for the final out of the game.
On field one at the same time, there was a face-off between the joint leaders, the Yankees and the Cubs. The Cubs came through to win it 5-2. Leftie Lewis Paterson launched his 2nd and 3rd home run of the season in the process with two blasts over the right-field wall and picked up the Player of the Week trophy.
This sets up a fascinating finale to the 2008 season. There is a real possibility that two or more teams may be tied at the top of the standings. In the event that two teams are tied, the season will be decided in a sudden-death Championship game between the joint leaders. At the moment it looks like this game will be scheduled for Saturday, 13 September, and it will be played alongside a Bronze Medal sudden-death decider between the third and fourth placed teams.
Things get really complicated if there is a three-way tie between the Yankees, Cubs and Red Sox. In such scenario, run differential of the three teams will be decisive. The team with the best run differential qualifies automatically for the sudden-death Championship game. The other two teams will play against each other in a sudden death extra innings shoot-out immediately after the scheduled games on the final day. The team with the second best run differential will have home-field advantage.