Thursday, October 18, 2012 |13:37 |Age: 213 days
Estonian Baseball Championships 2012By: Tauno Koppel
Estonian Baseball Championships 2012 (seniors) winner is Kiili Panthers!
On 31st of August at 5:30pm and 16st of September at 1pm the finals of the Estonian Baseball Championship was be held on Kostivere Baseball Park between Kiili Panthers and Tallinn Baseball Club competing for the title. The Kiili Panthers have won the 2012 Estonian Baseball League. They completed a two game sweep in the best-of-two final series on 31 of August evening with an nine inning 12-4 victory over the Tallinn Baseball Club and 16th September afternoon with an nine inning 8-3 victory. It is Kiili Panthers four title in Estonian Baseball history.
1. Kiili Panthers
2. Tallinn Baseball Club
3. Kostivere Amigos
4. Keila Pitbulls
This year 4 teams entered the championships - Kiili Panthers (Estonian champion 3 years in the row), Tallinn Baseball Club, Keila Pitbulls and Kostivere Amigos. There were several changes made in the teams compared to last year. Many of the disbanded Keila Sox (second place in 2011) members joined Pitbulls making it the biggest club on the championship, several members of Panthers transfered to Tallinn Baseball Club, causing Panthers to play mostly with members of their junior team and Kostivere brought in lots of rookies as well.
The season was also a lot busier than the previous seasons since all teams had to play 3 games with each other instead of 2, each team playing 9 games in total. Already the first game of the season was a sort of surprise for many - Tallinn managed to beat Panthers 5:2, but that remained the only loss Panthers had to accept this season. Panthers won the other two games against Tallinn with the score 10:6 and 18:5.
The first match between Keila Pitbulls and Tallinn Baseball Club ended with Pitbulls winning 12:7, but they lost the other games 8:2 and 10:5.
Pitbulls and Panthers played only once - Panthers won 10:4. The other two games were cancelled due to Pitbulls forfeiting.
For the same reason Kostivere Amigos were given the third place though only winning two games in the season - one thanks to Pitbulls forfeiting and 22:15 against Tallinn Baseball Club.
Despite losing several players Kiili Panthers remained strong throughout the season in both pitching and batting. The young, but talented Kristjan Ojasaar took the mound as the teams ace and didn't lose a single game. He was supported strongly by Tauno Koppel and Ergo Rohi. In offence Tauno Koppel (AVG 0.636; 3 HR), Vahur Põder (AVG 0.542) and also Ojasaar (AVG 0.417) cashed in most of the runs.
The key player behind the success of Tallinn Baseball Club was undoubtedly Kristjan Kruus, who previously used play for the Panthers. Kruus took the mound in 8 games out of 9, pitching a full game 5 times.
Two new baseball fields were also built this year in addition to the one in Keila. Both Tallinn Baseball Club and Kostivere Amigos got their own fields and the latter one has been titled the best and prettiest in Estonia. Both fields have brought baseball closer to viewers and will hopefully also help to grow the number of players in Estonia.
Estonian Baseball Federation decided to give 4 trophees for 4 best baseball players in Estonia:
Panthers statistics: www.baseball.ee/team_statistics/7
Rookie of the year - Aleks Kris Koppel (Kiili Panthers)
Best Pitcher - Kristjan Ojasaar ERA 2,77 (Kiili Panthers)
Best Hitter - Tauno Koppel AVG 0,636 (Kiili Panthers)
MVP - Vahur Põder (Kiili Panthers)
Photo1: Amigos Baseball Park, Panthers shaking hands after game with Amigos
Photo2: New Kostivere Amigos Baseball Park 2012
Photo3: Rookie of the Year in Estonian League – 9 years old Aleks Kris Koppel (Kiili Panthers)
Photo4: Kiili Panthers team 2012