by Johannes Godler
The defending champion Shellac Athletics started their mission of defending their title by traveling to the Vienna Spenadlwiese on Saturday to take on the Wanderers. In the season opener, both teams showed they will need some fine-tuning after the long winter, but the Wanderers fought through to start the season with a win. In Game 2, both teams seemed to find their focus, keeping things interesting until the last pitch was thrown.
The opponents entered their first game of the season both highly motivated, and thanks to a mental stumble by the Wanderers on defense, the A’s jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the 3rd inning. In the bottom half of the inning, the Wanderers bounced right back by jumping on the A’s starting pitcher Walther Strasser to tie up the score. Again the Athletics pulled out in front, before the hitters from Vienna knotted the score at 4 to keep the game wide open. In the 6th with the score still at 4-4, A’s head coach Trevor Rooper brought in Philipp Dressler to relieve Strasser, and he was able to keep the Wanderers in check for a few innings. A fielding mishap by the Wanderers defense and a throwing error by the second baseman allowed the A’s to take a 7-4 lead. But the Wanderers bounced right back, scoring 2 in the bottom half of the 7th frame, and taking the lead in the 8th on 3 runs. Vienna coach Hiro Sakanashi brought in closer Christian Tomsich to take over for Johannes Godler, who posted 11 Strikeouts in 8 innings of work. Tomsich wrapped it up for a final of 9-7, delivering the Wanderers a season-opening win.
In game 2, Chris Magarian made his first start on the hill in the Wanderers jersey. Magarian kept the hitters from the Alps on their toes for the first few innings, but they eventually figured him out, and had tallied 3 runs by the 4th inning. Thomas Schrittwieser, picking up where he left off in the playoffs, was in top form against the Viennese hitters.The A’s added another run in the 8th, and although they allowed the tying run to reach base for the Wanderers, Schrittwieser finished his complete game with a strikeout to end the Wanderers chances. He gave up just 5 hits, allowing him to control the nightcap and earn the split with a 4-2 win.
Shellac Athletics @ Vienna Wanderers
Game 1: 7-9 – WP: J. Godler LP: P. Dressler;
Game 2: 4-2 – WP: T. Schrittwieser; LP: C. Magarian;
The Schwaz Tigers travelled to Schwechat on opening weekend in the ABL, and the hosts Blue Bats were able to split the weekend with the Tigers, who are also among the favored teams entering the 2011 season. With two weekends in the books, four teams are tied at 1-1 in the standings.
This coming weekend the Shellac Athletics host the promoted RiCo Highlanders in an Upper Austrian derby. It will be a tough weekend for the Gramastättner, as they get a taste of baseball’s top league for the first time in club history. First pitch is at 13:00, with game two at 17:00, in the Athletics Ballpart at Spitzberg. The remaining six teams have Easter weekend off, before the season really gets underway with all teams taking the field at the end of the month.
|Saturday, April 16 2011|
|14:00||Vienna Wanderers||Athletics Attnang-Puchheim||09:07|
|16:30||Vienna Wanderers||Athletics Attnang-Puchheim||02:04|
|5||Schwechat Blue Bats||10||18||147||247||.357||14||L6|
|6||Stock City Cubs||10||18||119||165||.357||14||W1|
|8||SU Kufstein Vikings||7||21||116||281||.250||17||W1|
|Dates and Times are subject to change! In case of doubt check with the responsible national federation!|
|Saturday, April 23 2011|
|13:00||Athletics Attnang-Puchheim||Rico Highlanders||Athletics Ballp...|
|Saturday, April 30 2011|
|12:00||Rico Highlanders||Schwaz Tigers||Martin-Schütz-...|
|13:00||Athletics Attnang-Puchheim||Schwechat Blue Bats||Athletics Ballp...|
|14:00||Vienna Wanderers||Stock City Cubs||Spenadlwiese Pr...|
Pictures are available at http://www.baseballaustria.com/pressefotos/for press use.