Red Sox Season Concludes With Semifinals Exit
The London Majors paid a visit to Brantford on Saturday night to take on the Brantford Red Sox for game 2 of their Intercounty Baseball League semifinals series. The IBL postseason, which traditionally consists of a best of 7 semifinals and finals, features a compact format in 2021 with a best of 3 semifinals. The 2021 schedule has presented additional challenges, with many of Brantford's university players now having to meet their school commitments and thus unavailable or at a limited capacity for the postseason. Regardless, London's game one victory on Friday night put Brantford in a must win situation on Saturday to extend their season and force a third and deciding game in the series.
A pitching duel was expected in game 2, with London's top hurler Owen Boon vs. Brantford's ace Adam Jafine and that's exactly what played out. Both teams traded opportunities through 4 innings but the game remained scoreless. Then in the 5th inning, the 'bad inning' reared its ugly head once again for Brantford. With the bases loaded and one out, the Red Sox infield failed to convert an inning-ending double play ball into even a single out. Instead, two Majors scored on the play and the wheels came off for Brantford. The Red Sox would yield another pair of runs before finally shutting down the threat and Brantford was left trailing London 4-0.
A key to Red Sox wins over the final stretch has bene their ability to immediately bounce back at the plate. Unfortunately, their resiliency had all run out on this night. Apart from a single in the 6th and 8th innings Brantford's bats fell cold. London would tack on a pair of insurance runs and the Majors took game two by a final score of 6-0 and the best of three series 2 games to 0.
Brantford starter Adam Jafine pitched as good a game as one can without earning a win. Jafine delivered exactly what was needed of him, going the complete game while striking out 11 and yielding just 2 earned runs on 9 hits. Jon Dziomba led the Sox with a pair of hits, and nearly scored on a sacrifice fly in the first inning only to be thrown out at the plate on a very close call. Gianfranco Morello, Liam Sutherland, and Jason Pineda each also added a hit. Also noteable: Pineda narrowly missed out on a moonshot home run in the 4th inning, with the ball clearing the houses behind Arnold Anderson Stadium being called foul.
With tonight's loss, the Brantford Red Sox's 2021 Intercounty Baseball League season has now concluded. Thanks to all of the Red Sox fans, players, volunteers, and sponsors for their incredible efforts to bring baseball back to Brantford for 2021. Stay tuned to brantfordredsox.com in the coming days for a look back on the season, and a preview of what's to come for 2022.
The Brantford Red Sox were founded in 1911 and have won 15 Intercounty Baseball League titles. All home games take place at Arnold Anderson Stadium, tickets are available at brantfordredsox.com/tickets. For all the latest updates follow the Brantford Red Sox on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Subscribe to the Brantford Red Sox YouTube channel for live streaming of home games this season.