The third weekend of the German Ben’s Bundesliga began as it started: with three undefeated clubs. Heidenheim, Regensburg, and Stuttgart continued their strong starts, and in the weekend’s fourth match-up, Munich-Haar and Mainz offered high drama, with each team securing a one-run victory.
Mannheim Tornados at Guggenberger Legionäre Regensburg
Regensburg celebrated its home opener with a 6-2 victory (box) on Saturday night and followed that up with a 10-3 triumph (box) on Sunday afternoon to remain undefeated.
In Game One, Mannheim led 2-0 after three and half innings, but Regensburg responded with a pair of runs in the home half of the inning, and added two more in the following frame, and again in the seventh, to secure the victory. The Tornados pitched around sluggers Matt Vance and David Grimes, who each recorded three walks, but Regensburg’s bottom half of the order responded to the challenge, with the six-through-nine batters collecting all of the team’s hits and six RBI.
Game Two saw Regensburg leading 3-1 heading into the home half of the seventh, but a Matt Vance three-run homer extended the lead, and Devon Ramirez added his own three-run blast in the eighth to secure the win.
Regensburg starter Kaleb Bowman secured the victory in the second game on the back of another strong performance (7IP, 5H, 1R, 8K).
Heidenheim Heideköpfe at ITsure Falcons Ulm
Heidenheim secured two easy victories on the road in Ulm. The defending champion won the first game of the Saturday doubleheader 18-2 (box) in just four innings and then wrapped up the sweep in under two hours with a 10-4 victory (box) in the second leg.
The front runner for the Bundesliga Player of the Week has to be the German international Simon Gühring, who hit his first home run of the season and drove in 7 RBI in the first contest and then followed that up with two more homers and 5 RBI in game two. Shawn Larry, who won the award for his play during the opening weekend, homered twice and drove in four in Game One.
Mainz Athletics at Munich-Haar Disciples
In Munich, the Athletics and Disciples played the weekend’s most dramatic contests, with each club stealing a one-run victory.
In Game One, it was the home team who responded to an early deficit and squeaked out a 7-6 win (box), the club’s first victory of the season. Mainz brought runners home in three of the first four innings and led 4-0 after the visiting half of the fourth, but the hosts responded by scoring runs in the next four innings, including three in the seventh, with a Miguel Pineiro single accounting for the winning run.
A Max Boldt double put the tying run in scoring position for the Athletics in the eighth inning, and Caelan Sullivan singled in the ninth, but Disciples reliever Lukas Steinlein allowed nothing further to develop, striking out four and picking up the save for his two innings of scoreless relief.
Game Two saw Mainz jump out early and maintain a small lead until the bottom of the sixth when the Disciples scored two runs to tie the contest at five runs apiece. The score would remain tied until the final frame when the Athletics pulled ahead thanks to a walk, wild pitch and throwing error that allowed Tim Kotowski, who would record the win (2 IP, 1H, 2K), to round the bases. The Disciples managed to get the tying run into scoring position with two outs in the bottom half of the ninth, but there were no heroics to follow, and the Athletics escaped with the 6-5 win (box).
Stuttgart Reds at Tübingen Hawks
The weekend began with the Stuttgart Reds coasting to a 15-2 (box) home victory over the Tübingen Hawks on Friday night. Five runs in the bottom of the first on five Stuttgart hits and three Hawks errors set the tone for the evening. Another eight runs in the third decided the game, which ended by mercy rule after the visiting half of the seventh. Tübingen’s defenders committed seven errors overall and pitchers granted seven free passes, which when combined with 13 Stuttgart hits, including two home runs, was simply too much for the winless Hawks. Stuttgart DH William Germaine went 2-for-4 with a third-inning home run, his second of the season, and knocked in four in the win. Elias Macias (1-for-3) and Fabian Beck (2-for-3) each drove in two runs.
Reds’ pitcher Dustin Ward recorded the win, his third of the season, after relieving the starter, youngster Benedikt Schäffer (1.2 IP, 2 ER, 4BB). Ward struck out eight in 3.1 innings of work and allowed just one hit. He recorded 17 swinging strikes in the outing, lowering his ERA on the young season to 2.38.
Saturday’s rematch in Tübingen was more of the same, with the Reds scoring four runs in the third and three runs in the fourth to take a 7-0 lead they would not relinquish. The final result was 10-3 (box). Germaine homered again, and added a double, driving in two runs in the process, while Macias and Croatian international Antonio Horvatic each added three RBI.
Due to pandemic restrictions, the Bundesliga North clubs start play on the weekend of May 8-9.
STANDINGS — German Bundesliga South
|1.||Guggenberger Legionäre Regensburg||6||0||1.000||–|
|8.||ITsure Falcons Ulm||0||6||.000||6|
RESULTS — Week 3
|April 16||Stuttgart 15 — Tübingen 2|
|April 17||Tübingen 3 — Stuttgart 10|
|April 17||Ulm 2 — Heidenheim 18|
|April 17||Ulm 4 — Heidenheim 10|
|April 17||Munich-Haar 7 — Mainz 6|
|April 17||Munich-Haar 5 — Mainz 6|
|April 17||Regensburg 6 — Mannheim 2|
|April 18||Regensburg 10 — Mannheim 3|