We saw rain once again opening day, but everyone was determined to make a night out of it. Sam Staal and Jared Jonkman lead the Grounds Committee this offseason and the work put in by them and many others was in full display. Leroy saw a record breaking 39 players show up for opening day including 11 first time players.
Opening Day league stats were as followed:
Batting Average 0.451
Slugging Percentage 0.951
Homers – 70
Runs – 159
Strikeouts – 157
Hits – 230
At Bats – 510
E.R.A. – 10.08
Innings Pitched – 94 2/3
The Batting Averages were through the roof on opening day as we had the highest scoring game combined with a total of 45 runs in an extra inning thriller between the Clams and Narwhals. The defending Champion Bombers start off the season 0-2, and the Sultans led by 2 GBL Players went 2-0.
Player of the Week – #25 Matt Dykstra (Leroy Clams)
Matt had 6 Homers to go along with 6 singles and a couple doubles to grab a 0.609/1.478 Line opening day. He hit a Grand Slam in the top of the 5th inning with 2 outs to tie the game and ultimately send the game to extras were the Clams went on to win in a 2-Hour Slugfest. He struggled from the mound giving up 11 runs in 4 innings but got the win against the Narwhals.
Batter of the Week - #5 Jackson Buzea (Free Agent)
Jackson Buzea played both games with the win slightly blowing out and he took advantage of it. He hit a league leading 7 Homers to go along with a 0.714/2.286 stat line to start the season. He played for the Sultans leading them to a 2-0 start without owner Robby present. This free agent won’t be free after he meets the game requirements, someone is bound to swoop him up and fast.
Pitcher of the Week - #13 Caleb Jonkman (Lake County Liners)
Well isn’t this a shocker, although his bats struggled his pitching didn’t. Caleb threw 4 innings allowing 1 hit with 10 k’s. He helped the Liners jump to a 2-0 start to the season. Expect many more of these in the future.
Let’s take a look at the Shockingly Hot and Shockingly Cold Players to start the year.
#29 Justin Deckinga (Lake County Liners)
He was a last round pick and one of the lowest salaries in the draft, he is currently sitting 6th in the MVP race. He went 11 for 18 with 8 RBI’s and 7 Runs scored to start off the year. He also picked up a win throwing 3 innings allowing 2 hits and 1 run with 3 k’s. A great start for a guy with a lot of question marks to start the year.
#21 Cameron Varlan (Free Agent)
Cameron played for the Bushleague Badgers and had a great showing for a rookie with no past experience.He hit 2 homers and had a .364 batting average in his debut.The Crown Point native pitched 2 scoreless innings of work giving up only 1 hit.He was the 12th best player statistically after week 1, not to bad out of 39 total players.He said he was going to try this for a couple weeks, we hope he hopes to continue playing.
#34 Jack Hillegonds (Leroy Truckers)
Jack left early for softball which is first off the most shameful thing to do in the history of wiffleball. This came after hitting only 1 opening day homer and having just 3 hits. His pitching was worse giving up 6 Runs in 1 2/3 innings pitched with only 1 k. He was ranked 32nd among all opening day players, and last among the truckers. Not a good start for the #1 pick in the draft.
#23 Austin Warner (Flyin’ Hawaiians)
Although the Hawaiians found a way to beat the defending champs, it wasn’t cause of the owner. He had 5 k’s and 3 hits in 10 at bats to start the season. His pitching numbers were no where near what they were last year. He gave up 3 runs and 5 hits in just two innings pitched. He ranks 34th among all players.
Week 1 Owner Poll - The Owners all rank each team 1-11. First place gets 10 points, and last gets zero.
1. 93 (1-1) Bushleague Badgers
2. 81 (2-0) Lake County Liners
3. 76 (1-0) Squints Sluggers
4. 66 (1-1) Leroy Clams
5. 59 (0-2) Corn Bombers
6. 59 (2-0) Sultans of Soy
7. 43 (2-0) Diamond Dusters
8. 41 (0-2) Leroy Truckers
9. 39 (1-1) Flyin' Hawaiians
10. 33 (0-1) Backdoor Sliders
11. 15 (0-2) Noble Narwhals
Be sure to catch next week’s Facebook Live Games
Opening Slot (1-1) Leroy Clams at (0-1) Backdoor Sliders
The Clams are back at it this time taking on the Sliders. The Gibson brothers have pushed back their debut and will not be playing in this one. Brad Kamstra looks to make his 2018 debut with the Sliders after Jordan and Quinn were destroyed in last week’s opener. After a historical comeback the Clams look to feed off the momentum and keep the wins coming. Tim Wiltjer and Jack Hillegonds will be on the mic to give all the insight about the players and league.
Night Slot (2-0) Lake County Liners at (2-0) Diamond Dusters
These two teams many people didn’t give a chance going into the year, and both sit 2-0. The Liners looked to be in mid-season form week 1 hitting on all cylinders in both wins. Marty had two free agents in the opener after teammate Alex Freidman bailed forcing penalties down the Dusters throat. Alex looks to make his debut and the Dusters look to keep pushing through adversity early in the year. Jared Jonkman and Wes Ellis will be on the mic in what should be a great commentary.
Be sure to be on the lookout for Fireside Chat as Matt Dykstra joins the show to talk game previews. See ya next week!!