IBL Quarter Season Update

img_6186By Blake Stepien
We are only slightly past the quarter-way point of the Intercounty Baseball League (IBL) season, but already we have seen a fair share of blowouts, pitcher’s duels and outstanding individual performances. Here is a breakdown of each team’s season to date:

 

Barrie Baycats (10-0)

​The three-time reigning champs are back at it again this year as they began their season and their winning games in every way possible. They are winning the close games, they are winning the blowouts. Their excellent offensive attack this season can be credited for constantly producing enough to win, as the Baycats pitching staff has had an up and down season up to this point. Claudio Custudio has been the lone qualified pitcher to out-perform expectations for the Baycats this season, as a majority of their big names have struggled (by their standards) to this point. The Baycats hold the highest team batting average in the IBL at .335, to go along with 13 team home runs and 107 runs scored vs. 57 (49 earned) against. Although they have not faced the London Majors to this point due to a couple of rainouts, they boast at least 1 win against every other team in the league already, proving their utter dominance in the first quarter of the season.

 

Individual Statistics Leaders:

Average (among qualified hitters): Ryan Spataro- .525

OBP (among qualified hitters): Ryan Spataro- .627

Home Runs: Jordan Castaldo- 3

RBIs: Jordan Castaldo- 17

 

Wins: Brett Lawson- 3

ERA (among qualified pitchers): Claudio Custudio- 0.00

Strikeouts: Emilis Guerrero- 20

Innings Pitched: Emilis Guerrero- 24.0

 

Brantford Red Sox (2-9)

After a decade of fielding outstanding teams on an annual basis, early results this season suggest that the Red Sox have finally taken a step back in the IBL. The two wins they have accumulated up to this point have come against fellow strugglers in the Guelph Royals and Burlington Herd (formerly Burlington Bandits). However, this record may be misleading as the Red Sox currently boast a 2-6 record in games decided by 2 runs or less. Through this stretch, the pitching and hitting units have each seen some good individual performances. However, neither unit has been able to provide that extra amount of grit required to come out as winners in such close games. Look for Brantford to begin coming out on top in some of these games as they begin their climb to .500 in the 2nd quarter of the season.

Individual Statistics Leaders:

Average (among qualified hitters): Ricky Murray- .364

OBP (among qualified hitters): Ricky Murray- .451

Home Runs: Chris Dennis, Dan Jagdeo- 3

RBIs: Chris Dennis, Dan Jagdeo- 13

 

Wins: Tyler Soucie, Charlie Sobieraski- 1

ERA (among qualified pitchers): Matt Betts- 2.92

Strikeouts: Tyler Guindon- 11

Innings Pitched: Matt Martinow- 15.0

 

Burlington Herd (3-8)

​After beginning the season 0-7, the Herd have finally appeared to have found some momentum rattling off 3 wins (their first 3 of the season) from June 8th-10th, before ultimately falling to Barrie on June 11th. The Herd have had some excellent pitching performances, as well as some that were quite the opposite. Rich Corrente has been an excellent addition to the Herd, as he currently boasts a 1.12 ERA in 24 innings pitched. Christian Hauck (2.61) and Adam Prashad (2.89) also boast ERAs under 3.00 to provide a decent trio of pitchers to work with on any given night (although Corrente and Prashad have been starting for the most part). The offence has been led by Justin Gideon who is having his finest IBL season yet, boasting a .444 average with 7 doubles in 45 at bats. Canice Ejoh has also been a key contributor on the offensive end as he holds a .342 average and 8 RBIs in 38 at bats. Moving forward it will be interesting to see if Burlington trends towards the team that began the season 0-7, or the team that is 3-1 in their last 4.

 

Individual Statistics Leaders:

Average (among qualified hitters): Justin Gideon- .444

OBP (among qualified hitters): Justin Gideon .528

Home Runs: Canice Ejoh, Ryan Freemantle, Justin Gideon- 1

RBIs: Canice Ejoh: 8

 

Wins: Rich Corrente, Ryan Beckett, Adam Prashad- 1

ERA (among qualified pitchers): Rich Corrente- 1.13

Strikeouts: Adam Prashad- 23

Innings Pitched: Rich Corrente- 24.0

 

Guelph Royals (1-11)

​Another tough start for the Royals this season as they have already come out on the losing end of some tough scores. Although their offence has scored 28 runs in their last 4 games, they did not manage to win a single one of these games, as their pitchers once again have not managed to provide what is needed for the Royals to string some wins together. The team features 7 pitchers with ERAs over 10.00, making it difficult to come out on top, even though their offence has been putting up more than enough runs as of late. Moving forward, look for the Royals to experience similar results, unless their pitchers begin to turn it around and get key outs when needed.

 

Individual Statistics Leaders:

Average (among qualified hitters): Matt Schmidt- .333

OBP (among qualified hitters): Marquis Kidd- .386

Home Runs: Matt Schmidt- 3

RBIs: Matt Schmidt, Marquis Kidd- 9

 

Wins: Ben Reid- 1

ERA (among qualified pitchers): Matt Vucovich- 5.28

Strikeouts: Ben Reid- 10

Innings Pitched: Adrian Yuen- 17.0

 

Hamilton Cardinals (1-7)

​After only playing their 2nd game of the season on May 31st due to 5 rainouts in their first 6 scheduled games, the Hamilton Cardinals have struggled out of the gate this season. Collecting only 1 win, coming in the second half of a double header against the Royals, the Cardinals struggled to the tune of a .207 team batting average and an 8.70 team ERA. The Cardinals latest loss came at the hands of the London Majors by a score of 8-7, but besides this game, and a 4-3 loss to the Royals, they have played in very few close games this season. Moving forward look for more of the same from the Cardinals as both the offence and pitching staff are not producing enough to keep them in games.

 

Individual Statistics Leaders:

Average (among qualified hitters): Greg Marco- .250

OBP (among qualified hitters): Chris Beer- .441

Home Runs: Connor Bowie- 2

RBIs: Connor Bowie- 8

 

Wins: Jake Foden- 1

ERA (among qualified pitchers): Chris Lazar, Dan Weagle- 7.59

Strikeouts: Chris Lazar- 10

Innings Pitched: Chris Lazar, Dan Weagle- 10.2

 

Kitchener Panthers (9-2)

​A well-balanced Kitchener Panthers team has jumped out to a 9-2 record this year, with both of their early losses coming at the hands of the Barrie Baycats. Boasting a .322 team batting average as well as a 3.55 team ERA, the Panthers are likely the most balanced team in the IBL this season. Some gaudy offensive numbers have already been put up by the Panthers this year, as Yorbis Borroto is hitting .500, and all-time IBL hits leader Sean Reilly has 8 home runs and 22 RBIs already. On the pitching side, Matt McGovern sports a 1.63 ERA with Mike Schnurr not far behind him at 2.02. Look for the Panthers to continue thrashing teams this season as they come at you with a good attack on both sides of the ball.

 

Individual Statistics Leaders:

Average (among qualified hitters): Yorbis Borroto- .500

OBP (among qualified hitters): Yorbis Borroto- .600

Home Runs: Sean Reilly- 8

RBIs: Sean Reilly- 22

 

Wins: Noelvis Entenza, Ian Rendon- 2

ERA (among qualified pitchers): Matt McGovern- 1.63

Strikeouts: Noelvis Entenza- 31

Innings Pitched: Noelvis Entenza- 22.1

 

London Majors (10-0)

​Pitching is the name of the game for the London Majors, as they currently boast a 2.72 team ERA through 10 games this season. Led by Murilo Gouvea at 0.81, Luis Sanchez at 2.62, and an excellent bullpen, the Majors come at you with series of strong arms every night. Offensively, the Majors have been led by Byron Reichstein with a .375 average and 16 RBIs in just 10 games played. It is important to recognize that the Majors have yet to play either the Baycats or the Panthers, so look out for these matchups to establish exactly who the powerhouse of the IBL this season will be.

 

Individual Statistics Leaders:

Average (among qualified hitters): Byron Reichstein- .375

OBP (among qualified hitters): Byron Reichstein- .490

Home Runs: Cleveland Brownlee- 4

RBIs: Byron Reichstein- 16

 

Wins: Luis Sanchez- 4

ERA (among qualified pitchers): Murilo Gouvea- 0.81

Strikeouts: Murilo Gouvea, Luis Sanchez – 31

Innings Pitched: Luis Sanchez- 24.0

 

Toronto Maple Leafs (6-5)

​The Toronto Maple Leafs have managed to play above .500 ball in the first quarter of the season, thanks in large parge to a decently balanced attack with no glaring weakness, but no outstanding strength either. Offensively they have been led by Ryan White (.355) Jonathan Solazzo (.308), Tyler Hardie (3 home runs, 12 RBIs), and Justin Marra (3 home runs, 12 RBIs). On the pitching end, they have been led by Justin Cicatello who boasts a miniscule 1.39 ERA in 32.1 innings pitched this season. Moving forward, look for this well balanced team to continue around a .500 record, as they have the roster to beat all the bottom-feeders on a regular basis, but perhaps lack the star power to take down the powerhouses.

 

Individual Statistics Leaders:

Average (among qualified hitters): Ryan White- .355

OBP (among qualified hitters): Ryan White- .500

Home Runs: Tyler Hardie, Justin Marra – 3

RBIs: Tyler Hardie, Justine Marra- 12

 

Wins: Justin Cicatello- 2

ERA (among qualified pitchers): Justin Cicatello- 1.39

Strikeouts: Justin Cicatello – 16

Innings Pitched: Justin Cicatello- 32.1

 

Quarter Season Awards

MVP- Sean Reilly (.341 avg, 8 HR, 22 RBI

Cy Young- Muilo Gouvea (2 W, 0.81 ERA, 31 Strikeouts)

Rookie of the Year- Yulexis La Rosa (.432 avg, 1 HR, 6 RBIs)

 

Conclusion

​Although the Intercounty Baseball League lacks parity, it certainly does not lack excitement. The outstanding quantity of outstanding home grown hitters matched up against the large amount of import pitchers around the league sets the stage for exciting games night-in and night-out. For those that do not frequent IBL games, this league is highly recommended summer entertainment for a very affordable price. The quality of baseball on display in this league is quite simply among the highest you can find in Ontario outside of the Toronto Blue Jays. The first quarter of the season has proven to be as exciting as any other, and the quality of games is only going to go up as teams begin to come into their own as we approach the mid-season point.

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