TCABT-XVII: 1908 Cubs rule the field …

From L to R: Craig Christian, Brian DeSanto, Darrell Skogen, Fred Johnson, Scott Dike, Ben Lofgren, Bruce Tyler, Dan Skillings, Brad Logan, Dave Norlander, Leroy Arnoldi, Marty Lee, Jerry Jacobs, Kirk Davis, Barry Boevers, Jim Hall, Bob Long, Garth Andersen, Robert Elley, Dave Jones, Monty Stranski, John Kalous, Alec Otto, George Adams, Jeff Boeding, Rob Skogen, Dave Dawn, Kevin Cluff, Gregg Nelson, Paul Van Beek, Nick Tegeler, Dave Chestnut, Jim F. (A tremendous “THANK YOU” to Gary and Terry Borthwick for taking the group photo and each of the photos you will see in this post!)

Another grand day in the not-so-frozen tundra. We had a record number of entrants for our 17th bi-annual tournament, 33. 16 of the 33 are from out-of-state, representing 10 different states. 8 are “first-time” entrants.

Mingling during division play, Paul Van Beek on left, Dave Jones on right, with Robert Elley and Rob Skogen in the background.

The Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers/Robins represented 7 of the 33 teams: 1930, 1953, 1956, 2015, 2018, 2019, and 2021. No fewer than 4 of the 33 teams entered were Chicago Cubs selections: 1908, 1929, 1930 and 2016. In other words, one-third of the 33 team selections were either Cubs or Dodgers/Robins teams. By the time we eliminated 31 of the 33 teams, there was 1 Cubs team and 1 Dodgers team left standing.

Garth Andersen (1908 Cubs) on left, Jerry Jacobs (2019 Dodgers) on right.

Garth Andersen and his 1908 Cubs and Jerry Jacobs and his 2019 Dodgers would meet for the coveted TCABT-XVII traveling April trophy, in our best-of-three championship series. How we got there …

TCABT-XVII: Saturday, April 2nd, 2022

Division Play Summary

TCABT 1st-timer, Monty Stranski of University Place, WA, was able to maneuver a tough division with the 2004 Cardinals, finishing 1-game up on the 2021 Dodgers (Kevin Cluff) and the 1930 Cubs (Dave Norlander). The 1986 Mets (Jim Hall) and 1999 Braves (Ben Lofgren) finished tied for 4th in the division, 4 games out. Dave’s 1930 Cubs fell 2-1 in their final division game vs the 1999 Braves, knocking them out of contention. Monty’s 2004 Cardinals clinched the best record in the division with a 7-2 win in the opener of their final series, over Kevin’s 2021 Dodgers.
Kevin Cluff (2021 Dodgers) on left, vs Monty Stranski (2004 Cardinals) on right. Jim Hall wearing Mets jersey looking on.
Jim Hall (1986 Mets) on left, vs Ben Lofgren (1999 Braves) on right.
Dave Norlander (1930 Cubs) on left, vs Monty Stranski (2004 Cardinals) on right.
For the first time in TCABT history, a division ended up with all teams tied with the same record. The 1st tie-breaking rule for this scenario was the overall Run-Differential. With a +7 run-diff, Barry Boevers of Champlin, MN, rose to the top with his 2017 Diamondbacks and their 4-4 record. The 1980 Astros (John “The Cooler” Kalous) finished in 2nd place in the division with his +2 run-diff. The 1939 Yankees (Bob Long) and the 2010 Rangers (Dave Jones) claim 3rd and 4th place.
Dave Jones (2010 Rangers) on left, vs John “The Cooler” Kalous (1980 Astros) on right.
Barry Boevers (2017 Diamondbacks) on left, vs Bob Long (1939 Yankees) on right.
It was smooth sailing for Bruce Tyler of Elk River, MN, and his 1911 Giants. A comfortable 3 game advantage over the 2nd place 1976 Yankees (Dave Chestnut). The 1959 Braves (Darrell Skogen) and the 1979 Pirates (Gregg Nelson), finished in 3rd and 4th place.
Darrell Skogen (1959 Braves) on left, vs Gregg Nelson (1979 Pirates) on right.
Dave Chestnut (1976 Yankees), as he awaits his opponent, Bruce Tyler (1911 Giants) … the only evidence that it is Bruce Tyler who is missing in this photo, is that his pile of “hot” dice are ready next to his spot at the table.
The Mark Grace Division would work overtime to determine their division champion. After the 2018 Dodgers and 1953 Dodgers finished tied for 1st with 5-3 records, the tie-breaker for a 2-team tie was an automatic 1-game playoff. Alec Otto of Green Bay, WI, with his 1953 Dodgers was the victor in the 1-game playoff over Robert Elley of Longview, TX, and his 2018 Dodgers, 7-6. The 1985 Cardinals (Brian DeSanto) and the 1961 Yankees (Paul Van Beek) finished tied for 3rd with 3-5 records.
Brian DeSanto (1985 Cardinals) on left, vs Robert Elley (2018 Dodgers) on right.
Paul Van Beek (1961 Yankees) on left, vs Alec Otto (1953 Dodgers) on right.
2 teams making their first appearance ever in a TCABT tournament, the 1930 Robins and the 1941 Cardinals, found themselves in a battle for 1st place. Jim F of Minnetonka, MN, and his 1930 Robins used an early 2-1 series win over Jeff Boeding of Platte City, MO, and his 1941 Cardinals, to help propel them to a 6-2 overall record, good enough for the division title. Jeff’s Cardinals were busy winning 4 of their final 5 games, coming up a game short. The 2016 Cubs (Nick Tegeler) and the 1976 Athletics (Dave Dawn) finished in 3rd and 4th place.
Nick Tegeler (2016 Cubs) on left, vs Dave Dawn (1976 Athletics) on right.
Jeff Boeding (1941 Cardinals) on left, vs Jim F. (1930 Robins) on right, with Kevin Cluff looking on.
Jerry Jacobs of Fort Myers, FL, found himself in a West Coast haze of competing Dodgers and Giants teams. His 2019 Dodgers would rise above the haze with a 7-1 record and a tournament best, +34 run differential. His most ardent competition would be George Adams of Liberty, MO and his 2021 Giants. A 2-game sweep over the last 2 games vs the 2021 Giants provided Jerry’s 2019 Dodgers the division championship. The 1956 Dodgers (Kirk Davis) and the 2015 Dodgers (Marty Lee) found themselves in 3rd and 4th place.
Marty Lee (2015 Dodgers) on left, vs George Adams (2021 Giants) on right.
Kirk Davis (1956 Dodgers) on left, vs Jerry Jacobs (2019 Dodgers) on right.
TCABT newcomer, Scott Dike of Bicknell, IN, wasted no time in competing with his 1976 Reds, a tight division race with Dan Skillings, of Edina, MN, and his 1991 Braves. The 1976 Reds 6-2 record placed Scott 1-game in front of Dan’s 2nd place 1991 Braves. The 2021 Brewers (Craig Christian) and the 1988 Twins (Rob Skogen) finished in 3rd and 4th place.
Rob Skogen (1988 Twins) on left, vs Craig Christian (2021 Brewers) on right.
Scott Dike (1976 Reds) on left, vs Dan Skillings (1991 Braves) on right.
The Camilo Pascual Division was dominated by the 1908 Cubs, another team making its first ever appearance in a TCABT tournament, guided by seasoned TCABT manager, Garth Andersen, of Ramsey, MN. Garth’s 1908 Cubs completed the rare feat of finishing undefeated in division play, which I believe has only been accomplished once previously in TCABT history, by Kevin Cluff’s 2011 Rangers. Fred Johnson of Cottage Grove, MN and his 1929 Cubs finished in 2nd place, at 4-4. The 1971 Pirates (Leroy Arnoldi) and the 2015 Royals (Brad Logan) finished in 3rd and 4th place.
Leroy Arnoldi (1971 Pirates) on left, vs Fred Johnson (1929 Cubs) on right. Note, if it were not for the “Do not use the Fireplace” sign, both Leroy and Fred would have lit a match and tossed their teams into that fireplace …
Garth Andersen (1908 Cubs) on left, vs Brad Logan (2015 Royals) on right.

Bracket Play Summary

  • Quarter-finals

The top seed, Garth Andersen (1908 Cubs) on left, would suffer his first loss of the day, in the opening game of the best-of-three quarter-final series vs the #8 seed, Barry Boevers (2017 Diamondbacks) on right. Jeff Boeding looks on, as Garth wins the final 2 games of the series in commanding fashion to advance to the semi-finals.

The #2 seed, Jerry Jacobs (2019 Dodgers) made quick work of the #7 seed, Alec Otto (1953 Dodgers), winning 7-2 and 9-1, as Jerry and the 2019 Dodgers advance to the semi-finals.

The #3 seed, Bruce Tyler and his 1911 Giants need 3 games to upend the #6 seed, Jim F. and his 1930 Robins. Game 1 was a close 2-0 pitchers dual, in favor of the 1911 Giants. Game 2 saw the 1930 Robins facing elimination down 8-3 in the bottom of the 9th, before a 6-run outburst in the bottom frame kept the Robins alive with an improbable 9-8 walk-off comeback win. But Bruce’s 1911 Giants would prevail with a 10-3 rout in the series finale, as Bruce and his 1911 Giants advance to the semi-finals.

Somehow Gary, Terry and I each failed to get a photo of the 4th quarter-final series between the #4 seed, Monty Stranski (2004 Cardinals) pictured below and the #5 seed, Scott Dike (1976 Reds) pictured above. A closely played series saw the 2004 Cardinals jump out to the 1-0 series lead after game 1. Facing elimination, the 1976 Reds would respond with a 6-1 win in game 2 and a 4-3 win in the deciding game 3, as Scott Dike and his 1976 Reds advance to the semi-finals.

Bracket Play Summary (continued)

  • Semi-finals

#1 seed, Garth Andersen (1908 Cubs) faces off vs the #5 seed, Scott Dike (1976 Reds) as Dave Dawn, Jeff Boeding and Dave Chestnut look on. The ’76 Big Red Machine ran out of gas, as the 1908 Cubs blanked the Reds in 2 straight games, 9-0 and 4-0. This would mark the first time in TCABT history that a team was blanked in 2 straight games in bracket play. Garth and his 1908 Cubs head to the TCABT-XVII Championship.

#2 seed, Jerry Jacobs (2019 Dodgers) in a back-and-forth semi-final battle vs the #3 seed, Bruce Tyler (1911 Giants). After Jerry’s Dodgers swept the 1953 Dodgers in the Quarter-finals, the 1911 Giants won the opener over the 2019 Dodgers in a nail-biter, 4-3. Facing elimination in game 2, the Dodgers bounce back with 7-2 and 5-1 wins in games 2 and 3, as Jerry and the 2019 Dodgers advance to the TCABT-XVII Championship.

Bracket Play Summary (continued)

  • TCABT-XVII Championship

For all the marbles, the #1 seed, Garth Andersen (1908 Cubs) taking on the #2 seed, Jerry Jacobs (2019 Dodgers). Garth opens the championship series with his 3rd straight shut-out in bracket play, a 1-0, 10-inning walk-off win over the 2019 Dodgers. The 1908 Cubs would make it a quick 2-game sweep for the championship, with a decisive 7-3 win in the 2nd game. Congratulations to Garth Andersen and his 1908 Cubs, who finish the tournament with an all-time TCABT record 14-1 overall record!!! The 1908 Cubs were a 1st-time entrant into TCABT tournament action. They are now officially “retired” from TCABT play. Jerry Jacobs 2019 Dodgers dominated their opponents throughout most of the day, until the meeting with the 1908 Cubs. The 2019 Dodgers have now been entered in 3 TCABT events, making it to the finals twice, but losing each time. The one tourney where the 2019 Dodgers did not make the finals, they failed to advance to bracket play. Congrats as well to Jerry Jacobs and his overall 11-4 record with the 2019 Dodgers and their runner-up finish. Garth and Jerry were each making their first ever appearance in a TCABT Championship series. In the background of the above photo, Barry Boevers (looking away), “The Cooler” John Kalous, and Jeff Boeding.

TCABT_XVII Champion, Garth Andersen on left, receives the April TCABT Championship trophy from Jim F. on right.

Garth Andersen found a team that had never been entered in TCABT tourney play, proceeded to roll this team to an overall 14-1 record, claiming his first TCABT Championship in commanding fashion. Hats off to Garth Andersen and his accomplishment, including the best record ever by a tourney team in a single tournament. With the 1908 Chicago Cubs now retired from TCABT competition, they will sport a nifty .933 winning pct. for TCABT eternity. Our tournament has seen a total of 2045 games rolled. The 3 straight shut-outs by his 1908 Cubs during bracket play were not only improbable, but had never occurred previously in TCABT play, including both division play, or bracket play. In fact, it was not just 27 consecutive scoreless innings. When all told, it was also 8 innings from the previous game before the shut-out streak started, plus the 9 innings in each of the first 2 shut-outs, and another 10 innings in the 3rd consecutive shut-out, followed by another 6 innings in the following game when the streak ended. That is 42 consecutive scoreless frames his opponents put up offensively.

Jerry Jacobs and his 2019 Dodgers would suffer the 10-inning loss to Garth’s 1908 Cubs in game 1 of their championship series. However, Jerry also saw his 2019 Dodgers out-score his opponents, 91-41 for the entire tourney, as the runner-up team. His +50 run-differential may be a tourney record as well. The 2019 Dodgers out-homered their competition 25-10 during division play, a miraculous 12-1 advantage in homers during bracket play, totaling 37-11 overall, but somehow could not overcome the 1908 Cubs.

The “Coldest Dice” award. There is consideration to rename this award in future events as the “John Kalous Cooler” award.

Marty Lee, won a dubious prize of sorts. While in last October’s TCABT-XVI tourney, Marty rolled his way to a championship with the 2019 Twins, he found himself in the opposite direction in TCABT-XVII. The worst overall record, 1-7, and a minus 19 run differential. Marty is the proud owner of a new bag of 100 dice (10 different colors) as the prize for the “Coldest Dice” award. This will continue to be a new prize given out to the owner of the worst tourney record at each of our TCABT events. I can attest, Marty was just as happy to win the bag of dice as he was to win the TCABT trophy last October.

Marty Lee on left, George Adams on right.

Leroy Arnoldi, and his 1971 Pirates, during a loss to Garth’s 1908 Cubs during division play, the ’71 Pirates had 8 hits, consisting of 7 solo-homers and 1 single. The game was lost by 1-run. This was another example of the kind of day it was for Garth and his Cubbies, not just pitching shut-outs, but also winning games while giving up 7 solo-homers.

Dan Skillings, and his 1991 Braves, reported that his lead-off hitter, Otis Nixon, reached base no fewer than 23 times in 8 games played, via either a hit or a walk. He also scored 9 runs and stole 12 bases.

Robert Elley (2018 Dodgers) accomplished maybe one of the rarest feats of all during TCABT-XVII … with the bases empty, he managed to roll 3 consecutive “42” dice rolls with the “39” outcome, meaning his batter just struck-out, 1-strike at-a-time, over 3 dice rolls.

My apologies to others who may have submitted a unique game or stats. I went with what I was able to dig up from my emails. Thanks to everyone who submitted their results, good and bad.

And thanks to everyone who attended, including Gary and Terry Borthwick, who stayed all tourney long to take photos and enjoy conversation. It is each of the persons in attendance who make this tournament a wonderful day.

Looking ahead, the Neil Ess Memorial Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament plans for their 18th bi-annual event to take place Saturday, October 1st, 2022 back at the Youth Building at Lyon’s Park in Shakopee, MN.

TCABT-XVII (April 2nd, 2022)Team Selection

#17, Keith Hernandez, New York Mets, 1987

TCABT-XVII Tournament date is:

Saturday, April 2nd, 2022

TCABT-XVII Tournament location is:

The Shakopee Community Youth Building at Lyons Park

1099 Adams St S

Shakopee, MN 55379


TCABT-XVII: Selected Teams (click on team name for Baseball Reference link) –

  1. 2019 DODGERS (Jerry Jacobs – Fort Myers, FL)
  2. 1908 CUBS (Garth Andersen – Ramsey, MN)
  3. 1930 CUBS (Dave Norlander – Grand Rapids, MN)
  4. 1985 CARDINALS (Brian DeSanto – Blaine, MN)
  5. 1911 GIANTS (Bruce Tyler – Elk River, MN)
  6. 1988 TWINS (Rob Skogen – Forest Lake, MN)
  7. 2010 RANGERS (Dave Jones – Minneapolis, MN)
  8. 1976 ATHLETICS (Dave Dawn – Monroe, MI)
  9. 1930 ROBINS (Jim Fraasch – Minnetonka, MN)
  10. 1979 PIRATES (Gregg Nelson – Maple Grove, MN)
  11. 1956 DODGERS (Kirk Davis – Gladstone, MO)
  12. 2018 DODGERS (Robert Elley – Longview, TX)
  13. 1939 YANKEES (Bob Long – Kansas City, MO)
  14. 2021 BREWERS (Craig Christian – Eau Claire, WI)
  15. 1953 DODGERS (Alec Otto – Green Bay, WI)
  16. 2021 DODGERS (Kevin Cluff – Apple Valley, MN)
  17. 1986 METS (Jim Hall – Otsego, MN)
  18. 1999 BRAVES (Ben Lofgren – Hawley, MN)
  19. 2017 DIAMONDBACKS (Barry Boevers – Champlin, MN)
  20. 1929 CUBS (Fred Johnson – Cottage Grove, MN)
  21. 1971 PIRATES (Leroy Arnoldi – Prior Lake, MN)
  22. 2015 DODGERS (Marty Lee – Lenexa, KS)
  23. 1991 BRAVES (Dan Skillings – Edina, MN)
  24. 2021 GIANTS (George Adams – Liberty, MO)
  25. 1941 CARDINALS (Jeff Boeding – Platte City, MO)
  26. 1980 ASTROS (John Kalous – Belleville, IL)
  27. 1976 YANKEES (Dave Chestnut – Petersburg, IN)
  28. 1976 REDS (Scott Dike – Bicknell, IN)
  29. 2004 CARDINALS (Monty Stranski – University Place, WA)
  30. 2015 ROYALS (Brad Logan – Platte City, MO)
  31. 2016 CUBS (Nick Tegeler – Greendale, WI)
  32. 1961 YANKEES (Paul Van Beek – Winona, MN)
  33. 1959 BRAVES (Darrell Skogen – Maple Grove, MN)

Any MLB team, 1901-2021 (no teams from the 2020 MLB season are allowed), minus the following previous 16 TCABT Champions:

1927 Yankees, 1954 Giants, 1902 Pirates, 1937 Yankees, 2011 Rangers, 1930 Cardinals, 1930 Yankees, 1929 Athletics, 2017 Nationals, 1998 Yankees, 1972 Pirates, 1938 Yankees, 2019 Astros, 1906 Naps/Indians, 1998 Braves, 2019 Twins.

  • Cut-off for entering tournament is Friday, March 18th, 2022.
  • $20 entry fee covers the $200 site rental with all funds collected above $200 going towards APBA Gift Certificates for 1st and 2nd place (and possibly 3rd and 4th place) finishers.

TCABT-XVI (Oct 2nd, 2021) in the Rearview Mirror

TCABT-XVI: From L to R: Jim F., Ben Lofgren, Craig Christian, Beau Lofgren, Marty Lee, Gordon Rodell, Leroy Arnoldi, Chris Kaufman, Kevin Cluff, Garth Andersen, Bruce Tyler, Jeff Boeding, Phil Geraffo, Rob Skogen, David Jones, Dave Norlander, Fred Johnson, Jerry Jacobs, Paul Van Beek, Jim Hall, Eric Berg, Dave Druk, George Adams, Sue Nelson (MN Twins organist), Larry Nelson (Sue’s husband).

A first for the ages!! Well, at least for APBA Baseball regional tournaments … an official team organist from a current MLB team has attended and performed at a regional event. With special thanks to Sue Nelson, the Minnesota Twins team organist, our event was blessed with best ballpark organ melodies, hands down. The arrival of Sue Nelson was the result of one of our 23 entrants for TCABT-XVI, Dave Druk of Blaine, MN, who had worked with Sue previously for the local semi-pro St. Paul (Twin City) Vulcans hockey team.

Sue Nelson, Minnesota Twins Official Organist since 1998.
MLB Hall of Famer, Harmon Killebrew visiting with Sue Nelson
Whether a day game or a night game, Sue Nelson is the popular performer at Twins games

Since we had the 2015 Toronto Blue Jays, as one of our tourney teams, we had Sue open with “O Canada” followed by our National Athem, “O Say Can You See”. And of course, this was followed by the “We’re Gonna Win Twins!” ballad, which would end up being very foretelling.

Next time you attend a Twins game at Target Field, make sure you stop by the “2 Gingers” bar on the 2nd level near home plate and visit with Sue Nelson.

Beau Lofgren, MN Twins Organist Sue Nelson, Ben Lofgren

With dice flying, the tournament was underway. 10 division games for each of the 6-team divisions and 8 division games for the one 5-team division.

FINAL DIVISION STANDINGS:

Marty Lee’s 2019 Twins 8-2 record earned him the #1 overall seed in our 8-team, best-of-three, bracket-play round. Earning the #2 overall seed is Beau Lofgren and his 1930 Giants (6-2). Gordon Rodell and his 2017 Indians (7-3) have the #3 seed. Craig Christian’s 1957 Braves (6-4) round out the top 4 seeds, as the #4 seed. The #5 overall seed goes to Jerry Jacobs and his 1927 Athletics (5-3). The #6 overall seed is Bruce Tyler and his 1948 Indians (6-4). The #7 overall seed is Jeff Boeding and his 1905 Giants (6-4) and rounding out the 8-team bracket play round is Kevin Cluff and his 2004 Cardinals (5-5).

Whitey Ford Division: clockwise from lower-left, Eric Berg (1988 Mets), Kevin Cluff (2004 Cardinals), Bruce Tyler (1948 Indians) and Phil Geraffo (1953 Dodgers)
Whitey Ford Division: Marty Lee (2019 Twins) and Garth Andersen (2015 Blue Jays)
Dwight Gooden Division: clockwise left to right, Jerry Jacobs (1927 Athletics), Beau Lofgren (1930 Giants), Fred Johnson (1920 Indians) and George Adams (1946 Red Sox)
Dwight Gooden Division: Fred’s 1920 Indians facing off vs Jim’s 1901 Pirates … between the 2 managers, combined number of books written on Minnesota history: 5 (note, Jim has yet to author his 1st book) …
Bo Jackson Division: Ben Lofgren (2016 Nationals) and Rob Skogen (1984 Tigers), happiness is contagious …
Bo Jackson Division: Jeff Boeding (1905 Giants) playing vs Jim Hall (1917 White Sox) … Jim is either giving us the peace sign or is indicating he is about to take 2 from the 1905 Giants …
Bo Jackson Division: Craig Christian (1957 Braves) takes on Dave Druk (2016 Red Sox) … if we ever create a TCABT Hall of Fame, Craig’s mask will be part of the museum
Hal Newhouser Division: David Jones (1974 Athletics) vs Paul Van Beek (2001 Mariners)
Hal Newhouser Division: clockwise from left, Leroy Arnoldi (1962 Giants), Gordon Rodell (2017 Indians), Chris Kaufman (1969 Orioles) and Dave Norlander (1928 Yankees)

8-TEAM/BEST-OF-THREE/BRACKET RESULTS

While Jeff’s #7 seeded 1905 Giants swept their 1930 namesake the #2 seeded Giants (Beau), 2 games to none, the other 3 quarter-final series went the full 3 games.  Marty and his #1 seeded 2019 Twins took 2 of 3 from Kevin and his #8 seeded 2004 Cardinals.  Bruce and his #6 seeded 1948 Indians took 2 of 3 from Gordon and his #3 seeded 2017 Indians, while Craig and his #4 seeded 1957 Braves took 2 of 3 from Jerry and his #5 seeded 1927 A’s.

Quarter-final action: Beau Lofgren (1930 Giants) vs Jeff Boeding (1905 Giants)
Quarter-final action: Kevin Cluff (2004 Cardinals) vs Marty Lee (2019 Twins) with Eric Berg providing board results
Quarter-final action: Gordon Rodell (2017 Indians) vs Bruce Tyler (1948 Indians)
Quarter-final action: Jerry Jacobs (1927 Athletics) vs Craig Christian (1957 Braves)

The semi-finals saw 2 sweeps:  Marty’s 2019 Twins swept Jeff’s 1905 Giants and Craig’s 1957 Braves swept Bruce’s 1948 Indians.

Semi-final action: Marty Lee (2019 Twins) at top left in Twins jersey vs Jeff Boeding (1905 Giants) at top right, Eric Berg at lower left commandeering the results book and George Adams at lower right, playing VIP with his cell phone
Semi-final action: Craig Christian (1957 Braves) on left vs Bruce Tyler (1948 Indians)

The championship series came down to 2 finalists who had never won a TCABT championship, as did our previous TCABT tournament last April.  Marty’s 2019 Twins needed 3 games to best Craig and his 1957 Braves, 2 games to 1.  Each team traded 2-1 wins in the first 2 games.  Game 3 was a decisive 6-1 victory for the 2019 Twins, capping the first ever TCABT championship for both Marty Lee and a Twins team from any year.  Congratulations to Marty Lee and his 2019 Twins who went 14-4 on the day!  And congratulations to Craig Christian and his 1957 Braves, making it to the championship for the first time for both Craig and the ’57 Braves. Some stats provided by Marty for his 2019 Twins include:  a .206/.286/.441 BA/OBP/SLG line, which may not impress, however, the team did manage to hit 35 homers in 18 games.  Another stat which tells all in the division play record of 8-2 for the 2019 Twins, is the pitching staff allowed only 25 runs in 10 games!

Early in the championship series between Marty Lee (on left) 2019 Twins and Craig Christian (on right) 1957 Braves … the pictures also shows how lonely it can get at the top, when the 2 champions battle it out, with only a handful left behind to watch the action. Including the 2 finalists, we had 8 of us on hand to watch the finals play-out …
Jeff Boeding (center) mans the boards while Craig and Marty battle for the trophy in game 3.

The 2019 Twins become the first Minnesota Twins team to win a TCABT Championship.

2019 Minnesota Twins TCABT-XVI Champions
Marty Lee (2019 Twins) with runner-up, Craig Christian (1957 Braves)
Always happy to get a photo-op with the latest TCABT Champion … congrats again goes to TCABT-XVI Champ, Marty Lee!! Also, I would like to note, Marty’s opponent, Craig Christian, could not have been a more gracious runner-up. Well played guys!

Thanks to our 23 participants, it was a well-played TCABT-XVI … Our next event, TCABT-XVII, will be held in Shakopee, MN, on Saturday, April 2nd, 2022.

For those of you not on our normal TCABT distribution email list, and if you are new to TCABT, and interested in being added to our email distribution, please send me your name and noted interest, in an email to: entertcabt@gmail.com

Official APBA Games website

Take me out to the ballgame!

TCABT-XVI Team Selection

#16, Whitey Ford

TCABT-XVI Tournament date is:  Saturday, October 2nd, 2021.

TCABT-XVI Tournament location is (note last minute site change!!!):

City of Shakopee Community Center

1255 Fuller Street South

Shakopee, MN 55379

TCABT-XVI: Selected Teams (click on team name for Baseball Reference link) –

  1. 1928 YANKEES (DAVE NORLANDER – GRAND RAPIDS, MN)
  2. 1988 METS (ERIC BERG – BEMIDJI, MN)
  3. 1974 ATHLETICS (DAVID JONES – MINNEAPOLIS, MN)
  4. 1917 WHITE SOX (JIM HALL – OTSEGO, MN)
  5. 1948 INDIANS (BRUCE TYLER – ELK RIVER, MN)
  6. 1953 DODGERS (PHIL GERAFFO – SHOREWOOD, MN)
  7. 1920 INDIANS (FRED JOHNSON – COTTAGE GROVE, MN)
  8. 2019 TWINS (MARTY LEE – LENEXA, KS)
  9. 1901 PIRATES (JIM FRAASCH – MINNETONKA, MN)
  10. 2016 RED SOX (DAVE DRUK – BLAINE, MN)
  11. 2016 NATIONALS (BEN LOFGREN – HAWLEY, MN)
  12. 2004 CARDINALS (KEVIN CLUFF – APPLE VALLEY, MN)
  13. 1927 ATHLETICS (JERRY JACOBS – FORT MYERS, FL)
  14. 2001 MARINERS (PAUL VAN BEEK – WINONA, MN)
  15. 2015 BLUE JAYS (GARTH ANDERSEN – RAMSEY, MN)
  16. 1957 BRAVES (CRAIG CHRISTIAN – EAU CLAIRE, WI)
  17. 2017 INDIANS (GORDON RODELL – FORT MYERS, FL)
  18. 1962 GIANTS (LEROY ARNOLDI – PRIOR LAKE, MN)
  19. 2017 DIAMONDBACKS (BARRY BOEVERS – CHAMPLIN, MN)
  20. 1984 TIGERS (ROB SKOGEN – FOREST LAKE, MN)
  21. 1905 GIANTS (JEFF BOEDING – PLATTE CITY, MO)
  22. 1946 RED SOX (GEORGE ADAMS – LIBERTY, MO)
  23. 1969 ORIOLES (CHRIS KAUFMAN – MANKATO, MN)
  24. 1930 GIANTS (BEAU LOFGREN – HAWLEY, MN)

Any MLB team, 1901-2019 (no teams from the 2020 MLB season are allowed), minus the following previous 15 TCABT Champions:

1927 Yankees, 1954 Giants, 1902 Pirates, 1937 Yankees, 2011 Rangers, 1930 Cardinals, 1930 Yankees, 1929 Athletics, 2017 Nationals, 1998 Yankees, 1972 Pirates, 1938 Yankees, 2019 Astros, 1906 Naps/Indians, 1998 Braves.

  • Cut-off for entering tournament is Friday, September 10th, 2021.
  • $20 entry fee covers the $200 site rental with all funds collected above $200 going towards APBA Gift Certificates for 1st and 2nd place finishers.

Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament Results (TCABT-XV)

Saturday, April 10th, 2021

The gang assembles for TCABT_XV: Back Row from L to R – Darrell Skogen, Jim Hall, Fred Johnson, Garth Andersen, Phil Geraffo, Kevin Cluff, Dave Norlander. Middle Row from L to R – Barry Boevers, Rob Skogen, Dave Dawn, Bruce Tyler. Front Row from L to R – David Jones, Jeff Boeding, Leroy Arnoldi, Jerry Jacobs, Beau Lofgren, Ben Lofgren, Craig Christian, Jim F., Gary Borthwick. (special thanks to Terry Borthwick who took the photograph)

Another beautiful day for APBA Baseball in the Twin Cities of Minnesota. 20 APBA fanatics were in the running for the 15th TCABT Championship. The Neil Ess Memorial Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament has been held semi-annually since April of 2014. Over the years, 22 participants have been from out-of-state. From Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas, Wisconsin and from all 4 corners of the state of Minnesota.

Due to Covid, and Covid restrictions, our numbers have been down over the last 3 tournaments, including XV. Although with 20, we have our highest number since the Pandemic began. We have our sites set on 30+ for next October.

After the usual pre-tournament announcements, Q&A, and group photo, the dice began rolling non-stop (109 games) from about 8:45am to 6:00pm when we crowned our TCABT-XV Champion.

Early TCABT-XV action, April 10th, 2021, Shakopee, MN.

DIVISION PLAY:

DICK ALLEN DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
1998 BRAVES (BARRY BOEVERS)6333249
1911 ATHLETICS (DAVE NORLANDER)543941-2
1916 ROBINS (GARTH ANDERSEN)453437-3
1980 EXPOS (CRAIG CHRISTIAN)362933-4
TOTALS18181351350

Barry Boevers and his 1998 Braves won the Dick Allen division outright with a 6-3 record and a +9 run diff. This was good enough for a #5 seed entry into the best-of-three 8-team bracket play round. Dave Norlander with his 1911 Athletics finished a close 2nd in the division, with a 5-4 record and a -2 run diff which landed him as the #8 seed (wild card) in the bracket play round. Dave had started the day 4-0, but dropped to 4-4 before winning his final division game, a 5-2 win over Craig Christian and his 1980 Expos. The 1916 Robins managed by Garth Andersen, finished 4-5 and in 3rd place. Garth had a tough time winning enough games after dropping his first 3 games of the day to Dave’s 1911 A’s. Craig’s 1980 Expos finished 3-6, after a 1-1 start followed by losing 4 straight, before winning 2 out of his final 3.

Craig Christian vs Barry Boevers
Garth Andersen vs Dave Norlander
CECIL COOPER DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
1928 ATHLETICS (BRUCE TYLER)63472621
2019 DODGERS (BEN LOFGREN)543343-10
2019 TWINS (FRED JOHNSON)453237-5
1969 ORIOLES (PHIL GERAFFO)362632-6
TOTALS18181381380

Record wise, the Cecil Cooper Division was close. 1 game separated each place in the division. However, the run differential tells a different story where Bruce Tyler and his 1928 Athletics amassed a +21 run diff. Meanwhile, the 3 teams missing the cut each had a negative run diff, and most surprising would be the 2019 Dodgers with their -10 run diff, while their record was above .500. The 1928 A’s, wins were by modest margins, the biggest being a 9-2 win over the 2019 Dodgers. In 9 games, the 1928 A’s gave up only 26 runs in attaining their division crown with a 6-3 record. Meanwhile, Ben Lofgren with the division favorite, 2019 Dodgers, after starting the day 2-0 with 2 close wins over Bruce’s ’28 A’s, the wheels came off, and the Dodgers lost 3 straight, before managing to win 3 of their last 4 games, finishing with a 5-4 record, and failing to make the 8-team bracket play due to the their negative run diff. Fred Johnson and his 2019 Twins, 4-5, finished in 3rd place, as the 2019 Twins were unable to generate enough runs with that potent offense. Their high score on the day was 7 runs, twice. The 2019 Twins were on the brink of a playoff birth with a win in their 7th game to get to 4-3, but then dropped their final 2 games to Bruce’s 1928 A’s. Phil Geraffo and his 1969 Orioles, after getting shutout in their first game vs the 2019 Twins managed to win their next 2, with a shutout of their own in game 3. But 3 straight losses to Bruce’s ’28 A’s, was a hole too deep to climb out of.

Phil Geraffo vs Fred Johnson
The one photo where Ben Lofgren (on the left) shows his face, with Barry Boevers and Jerry Jacobs looking on
Bruce Tyler (on left) in playoff action (I was missing a shot of Bruce in Division play)
DAVEY LOPES DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
1936 YANKEES (LEROY ARNOLDI)63584711
1922 GIANTS (JERRY JACOBS)454446-2
1951 DODGERS (DAVID JONES)454648-2
1982 BREWERS (KEVIN CLUFF)453643-7
TOTALS18181841840

It was a slow start for Leroy Arnoldi and his 1936 Yankees, going 1-2 in their first series of the day vs Jerry Jacobs and his 1922 Giants. But scoring runs at a consistent pace was the name of the game for Leroy. His 3 runs in the first game of the day would be the low, while never scoring fewer than 5 runs in his remaining 8 division games. 58 runs total in 9 games was good enough for a 6-3 record and a +11 run diff. Meanwhile, Jerry’s 1922 Giants, David Jones and his 1951 Dodgers and Kevin Cluff with the 1982 Brewers, slugged it out for a 3-way tie at 4-5. Jerry’s Giants after getting off to a 3-1 start, then melted away winning just 1 of their final 5 games. David Jones and the 1951 Brooklyn Dodgers, won their first game but then lost 4 straight before winning 3 of their final 4 to finish 4-5. Kevin Cluff and the 1982 Brew Crew were looking strong at 4-2 after their first 2 series, only to get swept in 3 by Leroy’s 1936 Yankees in the final series of the day for Kevin.

Jerry Jacobs vs Leroy Arnoldi
David Jones vs Kevin Cluff
THURMAN MUNSON DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
2014 DODGERS (DAVE DAWN)63563917
1901 PIRATES (JIM FRAASCH)54443410
1995 INDIANS (BEAU LOFGREN)453251-19
1906 CUBS (JEFF BOEDING)363139-8
TOTALS18181631630

TCABT first-timer Dave Dawn and his 2014 Dodgers claimed the Thurman Munson division title by taking the final 2 games of the 3 game series vs division challenger, Jim Fraasch and his 1901 Pirates. Jim won the first game of the 3-game series 6-4, only to lose the final 2 games, 13-3 and 4-3. Dave finishes with a 6-3 record in division play and a +17 run diff. Jim’s 1901 Pirates climbed to 5-2 with that opening win vs the 2014 Dodgers, but quickly found themselves in survival mode after losing the final 2. The +10 run diff was strong enough for the 1901 Pirates to claim a wild card slot and the #6 seed in the 8-team bracket play. Beau Lofgren saw his 1995 Indians start slow even after starting the day 1-0 with a 6-5 win over the eventual division champs. Beau was 1-3 before winning 3 of 4 to climb back to .500, before dropping their final game, 7-6 to the 1906 Cubs. After winning the TCABT-XIV championship with another 1906 club, the 1906 Cleveland Naps, Jeff Boeding found out the hard way that a repeat was not in the making with his 1906 Cubs. Jeff’s 1906 Cubs went 1-2 in each of their 3 series.

Beau Lofgren vs Jim F
Jeff Boeding vs Dave Dawn
DUSTIN PEDROIA DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
1961 YANKEES (GARY BORTHWICK)72532924
2001 MARINERS (ROB SKOGEN)5441356
2004 CARDINALS (DARRELL SKOGEN)364150-9
2010 PHILLIES (JIM HALL)363253-21
TOTALS18181671670

Gary Borthwick’s return to TCABT action was with the proverbial “Bang”! His 1961 Yankees lathered themselves with wins early and often, winning each of his first 2 series 2 games to 1, before sweeping the 2010 Phillies to close out the day with 4 straight wins. a 7-2 record and +24 run diff was good enough for the #1 seed in the 8-team bracket play. Meanwhile, Rob Skogen and his 2001 Mariners took 2nd place in the Dustin Pedroia Division and advanced to bracket play as a wild card with their 5-4 record and +6 run diff. Darrell Skogen’s return to TCABT action was a downer on the dice side of things, but you would never know with Darrell since he has the smile that won’t quit at each of our TCABT events, always just happy to be there enjoying the comradery. His 2004 Cardinals, once a championship finalist, finished 3-6 on this April afternoon. Jim Hall and his 2010 Phillies started the day with a 6-5 win over the 2001 Mariners, but then lost 3 straight before winning 2 more to claw back to .500. Alas, the 2010 Phillies were swept in the final series vs the division winning ’61 Yankees. It was a tough day for the Phils, but Hall will be back for action in October.

Gary Borthwick (back turned) vs Darrell Skogen
Rob Skogen vs Jim Hall

BRACKET PLAY:

The 5 division winners plus 3 wild cards based on record and run differential to break ties, were entered in our best-of-three bracket play phase of TCABT play.

SeedQUARTER-FINALSG1G2G3SERIES
11961 YANKEES (GARY BORTHWICK)24 0
vs 
81911 ATHLETICS (DAVE NORLANDER)1011 2
      
21928 ATHLETICS (BRUCE TYLER)6341
vs 
72001 MARINERS (ROB SKOGEN)1452
      
32014 DODGERS (DAVE DAWN)9231
vs 
61901 PIRATES (JIM FRAASCH)3372
      
41936 YANKEES (LEROY ARNOLDI)2851
vs 
51998 BRAVES (BARRY BOEVERS)6462
SeedSEMI-FINALSG1G2G3SERIES
51998 BRAVES (BARRY BOEVERS)74 2
vs 
81911 ATHLETICS (DAVE NORLANDER)52 0
      
61901 PIRATES (JIM FRAASCH)3222
vs 
72001 MARINERS (ROB SKOGEN)1311
 
SeedCHAMPIONSHIPG1G2G3SERIES
51998 BRAVES (BARRY BOEVERS)6142
vs 
61901 PIRATES (JIM FRAASCH)4431

This was one of the closest fought bracket play rounds I recall in TCABT play. 3 out of the 4 quarter-final series went 3 games. One of the semi-final series went 3 games and the championship series went the full 3 games. In all, 19 of the maximum 21 bracket play games were rolled. We still managed to complete the tournament by 6pm. In the 5 series that went the full 3 games, 4 of the 5 deciding games were decided by 1 run. Ironically, Gary Borthwick’s #1 seeded 1961 NY Yankees found a quick exit after getting swept by Dave Norlander’s 1911 Athletics. All 4 “worse” seeds won their Quarter-final series.

Quarterfinal action between Gary Borthwick (1961 Yankees) and Dave Norlander (1911 A’s)
Quarterfinal action between Bruce Tyler (1928 A’s) and Rob Skogen (2001 Mariners)
Quarterfinal action between Jim F (1901 Pirates) and Dave Dawn (2014 Dodgers)
Quarterfinal action between Barry Boevers (1998 Braves) and Leroy Arnoldi (1936 Yankees)

The only other sweep in the 7 bracket series was eventual TCABT-XV champ, Barry Boevers and his 1998 Braves taking down Dave Norlander and his 1911 A’s in the semi-finals. Meanwhile, in the other Semi-final, Jim Fraasch and his 1901 Pirates won 2 of 3 very close games vs Rob Skogen and his 2001 Mariners. 12 total runs between the 2 teams were scored in that series. Game 2 went 11 innings.

Since I was missing a photo of the semifinal series between Barry Boevers and Dave Norlander, what the heck, I decided nobody better to give a bonus shot to, the eliminated #1 seed, Gary Borthwick
Semifinal action between Jim F (1901 Pirates) and Rob Skogen (2001 Mariners) while Rob’s uncle Darrell Skogen mans the boards

The championship series came down to Barry Boevers and his #5 seed 1998 Braves vs Jim Fraasch and his #6 seed 1901 Pirates. Game 1, Barry’s Braves won on a 9th inning walk-off, 2 out, 2 run homer by Keith Lockhart. 6-4 was the final. Game 2, with the 1901 Pirates trailing 1-0 after 3 (a solo HR by Lockhart in the 3rd), the Pirates put together a nice 3-run rally in the bottom of the 4th and added another run in the bottom of the 6th and held on for a 4-1 win, tying the series at a game apiece. Game 3, for all the marbles, another hard fought game. Both teams traded 2 runs in the 4th and 1 run in the 6th. 3-3 game entering the 10th. 3-3 game entering the 11th. 1901 Pirates go scoreless in the top of the 11th. In the bottom of the 11th, after Andruw Jones hit into a 6-4-3 DP, Ryan Klesko clobbered a 2-out, solo-HR to win the championship in walk-off fashion for Barry Boevers! Congratulations for a well played tournament by Barry, who was participating in his 2nd championship series, and came away with his 1st TCABT championship. The 1998 Braves are one of our most entered teams (8 times) in TCABT history. They are now eliminated from future TCABT events. Only the 1995 Indians have been entered more often (10 times – no championship). Barry also becomes the 2nd TCABT manager to win a championship on a walk-off homerun, and it also happened to be in the 11th inning. Kevin Cluff’s 2017 Nationals won TCABT-IX in the bottom of the 11th on a Ryan Zimmerman homer.

TCABT-XV Finals: Barry and his 1998 Braves vs Jim and his 1901 Pirates
Jim hands off the April TCABT trophy to Barry Boevers
Our TCABT-XV Champion, Barry Boevers, 1998 Atlanta Braves!!!

Tournament Oddities:

  • (Submitted by Jim F) Ben Lofgren’s ability to avoid the camera … note, I had in my possession, from 3 different photo takers, a total of 56 pictures from the tourney day action. While Ben’s random body parts may appear in about 8 different photos, there ended up being only 1 photo where you can actually prove Ben was in attendance, using facial recognition, with his 2019 Dodgers on April 10th, 2021 (other than the group photo).
An example of the elusiveness of Ben Lofgren avoiding photographs … that is Ben walking by wearing the powerblue Twins jersey, Rob Skogen in foreground.
  • (Submitted by Bruce Tyler) My 28 A’s lost the third game of the playoff with Rob Skogen by a score of 5 to 4.  I balked twice with a man on 3rd to give Rob the winning runs.  That was cruel.
Jeff Boeding runs the boards during one of the biggest oddities of the day … BALK!!!
  • (Submitted by Barry Boevers) The crazy first stat that popped up for me was that the Braves scored 21 of their of their 71 runs in the 9th or extra innings.  This included 8 multi run innings in the 9th or later.  Crazy.
Barry Boevers undoubtedly building towards another 9th inning rally vs Leroy Arnoldi
  • (Submitted by Dave Norlander) Now the 1911 A’s have been eliminated by both World Series teams from 1998.  I lost to Gary Borthwick’s 1998 New York Yankees in the finals of TCABT-X. (Dave lost to Barry’s ’98 Braves in the semifinals of TCABT-XV)
Dave Norlander enacting revenge for the TCABT-X loss to Gary Borthwick’s 1998 Yankees, this time sweeping Gary’s 1961 Bronx Bombers in the Quarterfinals.
  • (Submitted by Jerry Jacobs) The first time tourney entrant, 1922 Giants, brought their .305 team BA to TCABT-XV and proceeded to show their worth. They pounded out 102 hits compared to their opponents 75 and had a tourney BA of .302 but fell to a 4-5 record. They started the tourney fast with a 3-1 record but finished 1-4 where they lost two games in extra frames. Upon further review, if they had won one of those extra inning games, they would have been the 8th team to qualify for bracket play via a run differential tie breaker. Amazingly, their #3, #4 and #5 hitters never hit a double as the team connected for 81 singles, 14 doubles, 4 triples and 3 homers. In their final game, facing spoiler Dave Jones and the only “A” starter in the Davey Lopes Division with the score tied 4-4 in the bottom of the 9th, with one out the Giants had a fast runner on 3rd via a single and back to back stolen bases with their most feared hitter at the plate, Casey Stengel, who had 24 chances to win the game even though the Dodgers had 9 points in their air tight outfield. Casey rolled 12-25 and the DP forced extra frames where the ’51 Dodgers prevailed 6-4 in 12 innings. The nemesis Dodgers also turned DP’s in the 4th, 7th, & 10th innings to neutralize the 16 hits the Giants produced. The game ended in the 12th facing a “D” with the tieing runners on 2nd & 3rd with Cunningham at the plate who has a “9” on 42 and 62. “One roll away” is probably the battle cry of more than just one team as 20 teams scratched for 8 bracket spots.
Jerry Jacobs banging out hits with his 1922 Giants vs Leroy Arnoldi’s ’36 Damn Yankees.

Thank you to our 20 entrants in TCABT-XV. We go at it again, this coming fall … Saturday, October 2nd, 2021 at the Youth Center in Shakopee, MN. 30+ will be in attendance.

—————————————————————————————————-

A word about Beau Lofgren: Beau was at our April TCABT-XV tournament, back for the first time since TCABT-X. I found out a few weeks ago, about the heroic efforts of Beau risking his own life to rescue one of Ben Lofgren’s students, on a 2-day school field trip to the North Shore of Minnesota, Gooseberry Falls. This is an annual trip, but the first time a student ended up in danger. The event occured on Wednesday, May 26th. Ben was at the other end of the park with other students, away from the falls when one of his students ended up in the chilling waters. Beau was nearby and made the risky dive into the water. Beau and the student ended up plunging down the 20+ foot drop at the bottom of the falls where they were both pulled to the shore by passerbys who were in the area. Both sustained broken bones. Beau was in worse condition compared to the younger student. Beau is expected to make a full recovery this summer, and word has it, he will probably end up with plenty of time to play APBA, among other things. I cannot say enough about the Lofgren brothers … they are always a welcome site at our tournaments and here is to years to come with both Beau and Ben in attendance!

Beau on the right wearing the Brewers jersey vs TCABT newcomer, Dave Dawn.
See you in Shakopee this coming October 2nd, 2021!!!

Official Website of APBA Games

TCABT-XV (April 10th, 2021): Team Selection …

allen_7846xski_953ajh9kSouth-sider, Dick Allen, #15

TCABT-XV Tournament date is:  Saturday, April 10th, 2021.

TCABT-XV Tournament location is:

The Shakopee Community Youth Building at Lyons Park

1099 Adams St S

Shakopee, MN 55379

TCABT-XV: Selected Teams (click on team name for Baseball Reference link) –

  1.  2019 DODGERS (BEN LOFGREN – HAWLEY, MN)
  2.  1911 ATHLETICS (DAVE NORLANDER – GRAND RAPIDS, MN)
  3.  1928 ATHLETICS (BRUCE TYLER – ELK RIVER, MN)
  4.  2019 TWINS (FRED JOHNSON – COTTAGE GROVE, MN)
  5.  1916 ROBINS/DODGERS (GARTH ANDERSEN – ANDOVER, MN)
  6.  1951 DODGERS (DAVID JONES – MINNEAPOLIS, MN)
  7.  1936 YANKEES (LEROY ARNOLDI – PRIOR LAKE, MN)
  8.  2010 PHILLIES (JIM HALL – OTSEGO, MN)
  9.  1998 BRAVES (BARRY BOEVERS – CHAMPLIN, MN)
  10.  1922 GIANTS (JERRY JACOBS – FORT MYERS, FL)
  11.  1901 PIRATES (JIM FRAASCH – SAVAGE, MN)
  12.  1969 ORIOLES (PHIL GERAFFO – SHOREWOOD, MN)
  13.  1982 BREWERS (KEVIN CLUFF – APPLE VALLEY, MN)
  14.  2001 MARINERS (ROB SKOGEN – FOREST LAKE, MN)
  15.  1980 EXPOS (CRAIG CHRISTIAN – EAU CLAIRE, WI)
  16.  1906 CUBS (JEFF BOEDING – PLATTE CITY, MO)
  17.  2014 DODGERS (DAVE DAWN – MONROE, MI)
  18.  1995 INDIANS (BEAU LOFGREN – HAWLEY, MN)
  19.  1961 YANKEES (GARY BORTHWICK – CRYSTAL, MN)
  20.  2004 CARDINALS (DARRELL SKOGEN – MAPLE GROVE, MN)

Any MLB team, 1901-2019 (no teams from the 2020 MLB season are allowed), minus the following previous 14 TCABT Champions:

1927 Yankees, 1954 Giants, 1902 Pirates, 1937 Yankees, 2011 Rangers, 1930 Cardinals, 1930 Yankees, 1929 Athletics, 2017 Nationals, 1998 Yankees, 1972 Pirates, 1938 Yankees, 2019 Astros, 1906 Naps/Indians.

APBA_HANDBOOK

Team selection for TCABT-XV will be open thru Friday, March 26th.

Thurman-Munson-Red-Sox-Yankees

Thurman Munson, #15, breaking up the double-play.

TCABT-XV Tournament date is: Saturday, April 10th, 2021.

Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament – XIV Results

Saturday, Oct 17th, 2020, Shakopee, MN – TCABT-XIV attendees: From left to right – Leroy Arnoldi, Craig Christian, Bruce Tyler, Jim Hall, Kevin Cluff, Jerry Jacobs, George Adams, David Jones, Garth Andersen, Paul Van Beek, Dave Druk, Jeff Boeding, Phil Geraffo, Dave Norlander, Ben Lofgren, Rob Skogen, Jim F.

The 14th edition of the Neil Ess Memorial Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament was hosted for the 2nd time in Shakopee, MN at the “friendly confines” of the Shakopee Youth Center. Saturday, October 17th, 2020 with 17 in attendance. While keeping Covid precautions in place, staying under 20 attendees has been a good approach for reducing risk at the Twin Cities tournament. This has been our 2nd tournament while practicing social distance measures at our tourney site. We hosted our “April” tournament in August, with 13 in attendance.

With 17 teams, it meant 2 divisions with 6 teams each and 1 division with 5 teams. The 6-team divisions played 10 division games each and the 5-team division played 8 division games each. Each division was competitive, with the best 8 teams making our best-of-three 8-team bracket round. The top 2 teams from each of the 3 divisions, plus 2 more wild-card teams.

Division play is under way, early on Saturday.

Division play began by around 8:45am after opening announcements and the “obligatory” group photo was taken.

The Lou Brock division featured: Leroy Arnoldi (1962 Giants), Craig Christian (2019 Brewers), Dave Druk (2019 Yankees), Jim Fraasch (1973 Reds), Phil Geraffo (1998 Braves) and Rob Skogen (2004 Cardinals).

  • Leroy Arnoldi’s 1962 Giants (8-2) jumped out to a 7-0 record before losing 2 of their final 3 games. Leroy won the division with an 8-2 record and finished with a +22 run differential.
  • Phil Geraffo’s 1998 Braves (6-4), after dropping their first contest of the morning, recovered to win their next 4 games, before splitting their last 4 games. Phil finished with a 6-4 record, and a +9 run differential, good for a 2nd place finish in the Lou Brock division and an automatic birth into the 8-team bracket play round.
  • Jim Fraasch’s 1973 Reds (6-4), started out with a loss, then won 3 straight. The 3-1 record was short lived as Leroy’s ’62 Giants won 2, 1-run late inning comebacks over Jim’s Reds. Jim then won 3 of his last 4 contests, to finish with a 6-4 record and a +6 run differential. The final game was an 11-0 win over Craig’s 2019 Brewers, and a no-hitter for starter John Billingham (BYZ). With 46 runs scored and 40 runs allowed, this meant the ’73 Reds had a chance at the final Wild Card spot, tied with George Adams, who had the same record in the Al Kaline division, with the exact same 46 runs scored and 40 runs allowed, +6 run differential, which meant a 1-game playoff to enter the 8-team bracket play round.
  • Dave Druk’s 2019 Yankees (5-5) with a slow 1-3 start, managed to recover to .500, finishing 5-5 with a -1 run differential, good for 4th place in the 6 team division.
  • Rob Skogen’s 2004 Cardinals (4-6) after winning their tourney opener, would not find another win until their 6th game of the day. The 1-4 start was followed by a 3-2 finish and a 4-6 record with a -5 run differential, good for 5th place in the 6 team division.
  • Craig Christian’s 2019 Brewers (1-9) after a string of several 1-run losses finally got their first win of the day in game 8, over the 2004 Cardinals, 7-5. This would be their only win on the day, as Craig’s dice remained cold all day long. The dice were extremely frigid in the final game of the afternoon, which saw Craig’s Brew Crew no-hit by John Billingham and the ’73 Reds, 11-0. The Brewers finish 1-9 with a -31 run differential. Better days are ahead for Craig and his dice!
LOU BROCK DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
1962 GIANTS (LEROY ARNOLDI)*82563422
1998 BRAVES (PHIL GERAFFO)*6447389
1973 REDS (JIM FRAASCH)*6446406
2019 YANKEES (DAVE DRUK)554445-1
2004 CARDINALS (ROB SKOGEN)464752-5
2019 BREWERS (CRAIG CHRISTIAN)193566-31
TOTALS30302752750
Craig Christian found his first win of the day vs Rob Skogen’s 2004 Cardinals.
Phil Geraffo and his 1998 Braves pursuing a bracket play birth vs Dave Druk and his 2019 Yankees.
Leroy Arnoldi and his division winning ’62 Giants face-off vs Rob Skogen’s 2004 Cardinals.
Jim F. and his ’73 Reds battling Rob Skogen’s 2004 Cardinals.

The Al Kaline division featured: George Adams (1946 Tigers), Jim Hall (1949 Red Sox), Ben Lofgren (1911 Giants), Dave Norlander (1922 Browns), Bruce Tyler (1930 Athletics) and Paul Van Beek (2018 Dodgers).

  • Ben Lofgren’s 1911 Giants started a little slow, 2-2 after their first 2 series, but won their next 4 games, over the 1930 A’s and the 1949 Red Sox. In the 2nd game vs the 1930 A’s, Doc Crandall (AYZ) pitched a no-hitter, allowing just 1 walk. After a split vs the 2018 Dodgers, Ben closes out with a 7-3 record and a +9 run differential and the Al Kaline division crown. Good for the #3 seed in bracket play.
  • Dave Norlander’s 1922 Browns through 7 games were 1 game under .500 at 3-4. But after pulling out 3 straight wins to finish division play, including 14-4 and 10-4 wins over the ’30 A’s, Dave had his Browns in 2nd place in the Al Kaline division with a 6-4 record and a +20 run differential.
  • George Adams 1946 Tigers through their first 8 games looked to be headed for a division crown at 6-2. However, after dropping 2 straight to Jim Hall’s 1949 Red Sox, George found his ’46 Tigers in 3rd place with a 6-4 record and a +6 run differential. His 46 runs scored and 40 runs allowed had his Tigers exactly tied for the final wild card slot with Jim Fraasch’s ’73 Reds from the Lou Brock division. There is a summary of the 1-game play-off between the ’46 Tigers and the ’73 Reds leading into the bracket results below.
  • Paul Van Beek’s 2018 Dodgers, had the 2nd best run differential in the tournament, with a +21, 2nd only to Leroy’s ’62 Giants who had a +22 run differential. However, Paul’s Dodgers managed only a 5-5 division record, finishing in 4th place. The 2018 Dodgers started the day, 0-3, losing all 3 games by a combined total of 4 runs, before winning their first game by a 17-1 score over the 1930 Athletics. Paul’s Dodgers went on a 4-game winning streak, now sitting at 4-3 before losing 2 of his final 3 games in division play. A 2-0 loss in the final game vs Ben’s 1911 Giants was the difference in Paul not making the bracket play round.
  • Jim Hall’s 1949 Red Sox were sitting with a 1-7 record through the first 8 games, before finding some magic in a 2-game sweep of the 1946 Tigers. A 2-0 win, and a 10-9 win over the ’46 Tigers, meant George’s Tigers would not automatically advance to the bracket play round. Jim Hall’s Red Sox finish 3-7 with a -13 run differential, good for 5th place in the Al Kaline division.
  • Bruce Tyler’s 1930 Athletics, through the first 3 division games stood at 3-0, with three 1-run wins. However, the bottom fell out in game 4, with Paul’s 17-1 2018 Dodgers win over Bruce’s A’s. The A’s would not win another game all day, finishing 3-7 with a -43 run differential. Besides the 17-1 drubbing in game #4, Bruce’s A’s managed to give up 34 runs in their final 3 games.
AL KALINE DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
1911 GIANTS (BEN LOFGREN)*7338299
1922 BROWNS (DAVE NORLANDER)*64614120
1946 TIGERS (GEORGE ADAMS)6446406
2018 DODGERS (PAUL VAN BEEK)55523121
1949 RED SOX (JIM HALL)373346-13
1930 ATHLETICS (BRUCE TYLER)372871-43
TOTALS30302582580
Paul Van Beek’s 2018 Dodgers battling George Adams’ 1946 Tigers.
Bruce Tyler’s 1930 Athletics take on Jim Hall’s 1949 Red Sox.
Paul’s 2018 Dodgers vs Ben Lofgren’s 1911 Giants.
Dave Norlander’s 1922 Browns battles Bruce and Bruce’s dice pile …
Ben and George having fun with Dave Norlander either watching play or napping … note, Dave Norlander left his home at 4am in Grand Rapids, MN, to arrive in the Twin Cities by 8am. He arrived before at least half of the other 17 arrived.

The Tom Seaver division featured: Garth Anderson (1986 Angels), Jeff Boeding (1906 Naps), Kevin Cluff (2019 Dodgers), Jerry Jacobs (1928 Athletics), and David Jones (1977 Royals).

  • Kevin Cluff’s 2019 Dodgers lived up to their billing as the pre-tourney “favorites”, going 7-1 in division play. They were 7-0 until their final division game when they lost 6-4 to the 1977 Royals. Little did anyone know, the first series of the day for Kevin’s 2019 Dodgers would be vs the eventual TCABT-XIV champion, 1906 Naps. The Naps were swept in the opening series of the day, 5-4 and 7-5. Kevin’s Dodgers were very consistent in division play, scoring anywhere from 3 runs to 7 runs in each game. The 7-1 record was backed up with a +13 run differential.
  • Jeff Boeding’s 1906 Naps (Indians) had to dig out from an opening 0-2 hole after getting swept by the 2019 Dodgers to start the day. An ominous start for Jeff’s eventual tourney champion Naps. They would go on a 5-game win-streak with sweeps over the 1928 A’s and 1986 Angels before splitting with the 1977 Royals. Jeff’s Naps go 5-3 with a +12 run differential in division play.
  • David Jones’ 1977 Royals make David’s first trip to bracket play with a 5-3 record and a +4 run differential, as they qualify with a wild-card and the #7 seed. The highlight of division play for David was the 6-4 win over the 2019 Dodgers, the only loss in division play for the 2019 Dodgers, and the win gave David 1 of the 2 wild-card entries into bracket play.
  • Jerry Jacobs’ 1928 Athletics finish with a 2-6 record and a +1 run differential, good for 4th place in the 5-team division. Jerry’s undoing was the performance (or lack there of) of 2 of its Hall-of-Fame sluggers, Al Simmons and Jimmie Foxx. I received the following stats for both players, after Jerry combined their performances from his last 2 TCABT tournaments: Foxx through 16 games: 7-62, BA of .113 with six singles and one double. Simmons through 17 games: 9-72, BA of .125 with eight singles and one double.
  • Garth Andersen’s 1986 Angels found themselves in a tough division. Garth’s Angels finished 1-7 with a -30 run differential, the only team in the division who finished with a “minus” run diff. The Angels actually had 2 very close games vs the 2019 Dodgers. Losses of 4-1 and 5-4. The only win was game 1 of the day, a 7-6 win over the 1977 Royals.
TOM SEAVER DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
2019 DODGERS (KEVIN CLUFF)*71372413
1906 NAPS “INDIANS” (JEFF BOEDING)*53463412
1977 ROYALS (DAVID JONES)*5352484
1928 ATHLETICS (JERRY JACOBS)2636351
1986 ANGELS (GARTH ANDERSEN)172656-30
      
TOTALS20201971970
Jerry Jacobs (1928 As’) vs Jeff Boeding (1906 Naps).
Jerry vs David Jones (1977 Royals).
Jerry vs Kevin Cluff (2019 Dodgers).
Jeff vs Garth Andersen (1986 Angels).

Heading into bracket play was a 1-game play-off between George Adams’ 1946 Tigers and Jim Fraasch’s 1973 Reds. After the first 7 seeds were determined for bracket play, we realized we had an unbroken tie using each of our tie-breakers … #1 – winning pct., #2 – run differential, #3 – fewest runs allowed.

Rather than flipping a coin to break an unbreakable tie, we resort to a 1-game playoff, where each team must use the next starter available (after division play was completed) in the 4-man rotations for each team. It would be Hal Newhouser (AXY) for Detroit vs Ross Grimsley (BZ) for Cincinnati.

The 8th and final bracket-play seed to be decided in a 1-game playoff between Jim F’s 1973 Reds and George Adams’ 1946 Tigers.

In the 1-game playoff for the #8 seed in bracket play, George’s Tigers took a 3-0 lead in the top of the 1st. This would be the only runs the Tigers managed to score in the 1-game playoff, losing the game in the bottom of the 9th when Dennis Menke singled home Ken Griffey from 2nd for Menke’s only RBI of the tournament. The ’73 Reds win the 1-game playoff, 4-3 over the ’46 Tigers.

The Bracket-Play results, Quarter-Finals:

Bracket-play began shortly after 4pm. 3 of the 4 quarter-final series went the full 3 games. Only David Jones was able to find a sweep with his #7 seed ’77 Royals surprising the #2 seed ’62 Giants of Leroy Arnoldi.

Leroy Arnoldi’s ’62 Giants succumb to David Jones and his ’77 Royals, 2 games to none.

Kevin Cluff’s #1 seed 2019 Dodgers, needed a Game 3 comeback, trailing 4-2, to win the series 2 games to 1 over Jim Fraasch’s #8 seed ’73 Reds.

Jim F. (’73 Reds) looks on as Kevin Cluff (2019 Dodgers) attempts to ring another “66” from his tiny dice.

In another quarter-final upset, Phil Geraffo and his #6 seed ’98 Braves find a Game 3 victory over defending April champion, Ben Lofgren and his #3 seed 1911 Giants.

Ben Lofgren (1911 Giants) running out of hit & run mojo, losing in 3 games to Phil Geraffo (’98 Braves).

After Jeff Boeding and his #4 seed 1906 Naps dropped game 1 to Dave Norlander and his 1922 Browns, Jeff rallied to win 2-straight to advance to the semi-finals.

Jeff Boeding (1906 Naps) vs Dave Norlander (1922 Browns).

The Bracket-Play results, Semi-Finals:

The semi-finals began after the #2, #3, #5 and #8 seeds were eliminated in the quarter-finals.

Kevin’s #1 seed 2019 Dodgers made it look easy, vs David Jones and his #7 seed 1977 Royals. Kevin wins 2 straight, outscoring the Royals, 23-2 in the 2 games.

David Jones and his ’77 Royals are flushed by Kevin’s 2019 Dodgers in 2 games.

Meanwhile, Jeff Boeding and his upstart 1906 Cleveland Naps sweep Phil Geraffo and his power laden 1998 Braves, 2 games to none. (Missing photos of this semi-final matchup – but we make up for it with the photos from the championship series)

The Bracket-Play results, Championship:

The TCABT-XIV Championship match-up features Kevin Cluff’s #1 seed 2019 Dodgers vs Jeff Boeding’s #4 seed 1906 Naps. Game 1, is won handily by Kevin’s Dodgers, 11-4. Down but not out, Jeff’s Naps rally in game 2 to stay alive, with a thrilling bottom of the 10th, 3-run homer by Nig Clarke (he hit 1 homer in real-life). Game 3, for all the marbles, Jeff’s Naps win another nail-biter, 6-5, with Kevin’s final dice roll a “65” with a runner on base. Game over, Jeff Boeding is our TCABT-XIV Champion. Jeff becomes our first with “legend” status, as his name will now be on both our April and October trophies. Meanwhile, Kevin Cluff still owns the most TCABT championships, with 3, all earned in the April tournament. Congratulations to Jeff for a thrilling tourney win! Congrats to Kevin Cluff on his 2nd place finish!

Kevin Cluff (2019 Dodgers), George Adams (reading play results), Jeff Boeding (1906 Naps).
Jeff vs Kevin with David Jones looking on during championship play.
The final dice roll of TCABT-XIV.
SeedTCABT-XIV   QUARTER-FINALSG1G2G3SERIES
12019 DODGERS (KEVIN CLUFF)7472
 
81973 REDS (JIM FRAASCH)2841
 
 
21962 GIANTS (LEROY ARNOLDI)03 0
 
71977 ROYALS (DAVID JONES)64 2
 
 
31911 GIANTS (BEN LOFGREN)7131
 
61998 BRAVES (PHIL GERAFFO)2442
 
 
41906 NAPS “INDIANS” (JEFF BOEDING)2532
 
51922 BROWNS (DAVE NORLANDER)5311
SeedTCABT-XIV   SEMI-FINALSG1G2G3SERIES
12019 DODGERS (KEVIN CLUFF)716 2
 
71977 ROYALS (DAVID JONES)20 0
 
 
41906 NAPS “INDIANS” (JEFF BOEDING)36 2
 
61998 BRAVES (PHIL GERAFFO)22 0
SeedTCABT-XIV   CHAMPIONSHIPG1G2G3SERIES
12019 DODGERS (KEVIN CLUFF)11651
 
41906 NAPS “INDIANS” (JEFF BOEDING)4762
All smiles as Jeff Boeding is crowned TCABT-XIV Champion.
Congratulations Jeff!

Our next Twin Cities tournament (TCABT-XV) will be held Saturday, April 10th, 2021 as we play for the 8th April Championship in TCABT history. Same location, The Shakopee Youth Center in Shakopee, MN. The team selection process for TCABT-XV will begin in January. Stay tuned!

Nap Lajoie, 1906 Cleveland Naps

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TCABT-XIV (October 17, 2020): Team Selection …

banks_14“Let’s play 2” … Ernie Banks

TCABT-XIV Tournament date is:  Saturday, October 17th, 2020.

TCABT-XIV Tournament site is:

The Shakopee Community Youth Building at Lyons Park

1099 Adams St S

Shakopee, MN 55379

TCABT-XIV: Selected Teams (click on team name for Baseball Reference link) –

  1.  1922 BROWNS (DAVE NORLANDER – GRAND RAPIDS, MN)
  2.  1977 ROYALS (DAVE JONES – MINNEAPOLIS, MN)
  3.  2019 BREWERS (CRAIG CHRISTIAN – EAU CLAIRE, WI)
  4.  2004 CARDINALS (ROB SKOGEN – FOREST LAKE, MN)
  5.  1949 RED SOX (JIM HALL – OTSEGO, MN)
  6.  1906 NAPS – “INDIANS” (JEFF BOEDING – PLATTE CITY, MO)
  7.  1973 REDS (JIM FRAASCH – SAVAGE, MN)
  8.  1928 ATHLETICS (JERRY JACOBS – FORT MYERS, FL)
  9.  2019 DODGERS (KEVIN CLUFF – APPLE VALLEY, MN)
  10.  1998 BRAVES (PHIL GERAFFO – SHOREWOOD, MN)
  11.  1911 GIANTS (BEN LOFGREN – HAWLEY, MN)
  12.  1986 ANGELS (GARTH ANDERSEN – ANDOVER, MN)
  13.  2018 DODGERS (PAUL VAN BEEK – WINONA, MN)
  14.  1930 ATHLETICS (BRUCE TYLER – ELK RIVER, MN)
  15.  2019 YANKEES (DAVE DRUK – BLAINE, MN)
  16.  1946 TIGERS (GEORGE ADAMS – LIBERTY, MO)
  17.  1962 GIANTS (LEROY ARNOLDI – PRIOR LAKE, MN)

Any MLB team, 1901-2019, minus the following previous 13 TCABT Champions:

1927 Yankees, 1954 Giants, 1902 Pirates, 1937 Yankees, 2011 Rangers, 1930 Cardinals, 1930 Yankees, 1929 Athletics, 2017 Nationals, 1998 Yankees, 1972 Pirates, 1938 Yankees, 2019 Astros.

4_teams

Team selection for TCABT-XIV will be open thru Friday, September 25th.

hrbek_14

Kent Hrbek, rookie year, 1981

TCABT-XIV Tournament date is: Saturday, October 17th, 2020.

TCABT-XIII Results …

TCABT-XIII: 13 entrants (12 pictured) – L to R: Barry Boevers, Ben Lofgren, Leroy Arnoldi, Phil Geraffo (standing directly behind Leroy), Dave Jones, Garth Andersen, Rob Skogen, Jerry Jacobs, Robert Elley (standing directly behind Jerry), Kevin Cluff, Jim Hall, Jim F. – Not pictured is Dave Norlander. The group photo was taken the morning of, before the games started, outside of the Shakopee Community Youth Center.

The Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament finally resumed action by holding its belated “April Trophy” tourney on Saturday, August 8th.

Our new tourney site, the Shakopee Community Youth Center, was put to the test. The overwhelming response to the new location, was that this can work for future TCABT events, even with 30+ attendees on hand.

The Shakopee Community Youth Center

A special thanks to Terry and Gary Borthwick, for offering to drive to the new site and take photos as the entrants arrive on site, including taking the group photo. The Borthwick’s are regular tournament entrants, but decided to sit this one out.

Gary Borthwick sneaks in a photo of his wife Terry. Even though both were not playing in this tourney, they took the time to show up early and take a few photos, including the group photo. You can blame her NYC roots for the wearing of the Yankees jersey.
Robert Elley from Longview, TX, takes the “long distance” award for his trek to the Twin Cities. Robert’s wife has a son who works for the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, so the trip allows them a chance to visit. Robert managed the 2017 Astros today.
You could tell by the walk, Ben Lofgren meant business today … 13 wins and 2 losses was the record for his champion 2019 Astros.
Ben, Kevin Cluff (2019 Twins) and Jim F. (1931 Athletics)
Fearless Rob Skogen, and his 1995 Indians, had plans to “reverse the curse” …
Terry, Barry Boevers (1977 Phillies), Garth Andersen (1967 Cardinals) and Ben.
Phil Geraffo (1969 Twins) ready to play “Billy-ball” …
Leroy Arnoldi (1936 Yankees) arrives for his shot at April immortality.
The man behind the mask, TCABT first-timer, Jim Hall (1985 Expos).
Gag prop of the day … Robert Elley came prepared, for both his 2017 Astros and Ben Lofgren’s 2019 Astros. The garbage can fitted with the Houston Astros logo, a miniature baseball bat and 2 dice, with only “6’s” on each side.

DIVISION PLAY RESULTS:

 TCABT-XIII     
 Saturday, August 8th, 2020 
 LEFT FIELD DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
11910 ATHLETICS (DAVE NORLANDER)71462917
52019 TWINS (KEVIN CLUFF)6254459
71928 ATHLETICS (JERRY JACOBS)4436306
 1969 TWINS (PHIL GERAFFO)352439-15
 1995 INDIANS (ROB SKOGEN)083552-17
       
 TOTALS20201951950
 CENTER FIELD DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
31977 PHILLIES (BARRY BOEVERS)63483414
62017 ASTROS (ROBERT ELLEY)63594910
 1976 REDS (DAVE JONES)453651-15
 1931 ATHLETICS (JIM FRAASCH)274049-9
       
 TOTALS18181831830
 RIGHT FIELD DIVISIONWLRORRDIFF
22019 ASTROS (BEN LOFGREN)72423012
41936 YANKEES (LEROY ARNOLDI)72501832
81967 CARDINALS (GARTH ANDERSEN)452935-6
 1985 EXPOS (JIM HALL)091957-38
       
 TOTALS18181401400
Jim F. accepting a “bribe” payment from Leroy Arnoldi before play begins, as Phil Geraffo and Jerry Jacobs look on …

The division races were tight, especially between the top 2 teams in each division.

In the Left Field Division, Dave Norlander’s 1 loss was to Kevin Cluff’s 2019 Twins. Kevin Cluff finished 6-2 with the potent 2019 Twins lineup, and entered bracket play with their 2nd place finish as the #5 seed. Finishing 3rd, and qualifying for bracket play, was Jerry Jacob’s 1928 Athletics. He went 4-4 in division play, winning his first 2, losing his middle 4 then winning his final 2 to qualify. In what seemed to be a theme for those powerful late 20’s/early 30’s A’s teams today, Jerry saw his ’28 Jimmie Foxx and Al Simmons go a combined 9 for 80 with 1 double and 1 triple. Phil Geraffo’s 1969 Twins started out the day with a 3-1 record. But losses in the final 4 games spelled doom for Phil and his Twins, finishing with a 3-5 record.

Meanwhile, Rob Skogen’s ’95 Indians lost 4 games by 1 run each, in going 0-8. For the record, this is the 2nd time Rob has brought the ’95 Indians to a TCABT tourney. Each time, they have gone 0-8 for Rob. In all, the ’95 Indians have been entered in our tournament, 9 times. They have gone 0-16 when Rob manages them, and 36-34 when other skippers have been at the helm. They have made bracket play 3 of the 9 times they have been entered. Rob Skogen’s overall TCABT W-L record when he does not bring the ’95 Indians, is 51-49. Will Rob try a 3rd time with these ’95 Indians? We all hope so …

Say-hey, it is tourney day!! Pictured are Leroy, Jerry Jacobs and Garth Anderson.

In the Center Field Division, it was a day of sweeping, or getting swept, with only 2 of the series in the division not seeing sweeps. In an opening series, the battle of Philly, went to my ’31 A’s, 2 games to 1, over Barry Boevers’ 1977 Phillies, the eventual Center Field Division champs. It would be Fraasch’s ’31 A’s last wins of the day. Jim’s A’s dropped the next 6 games, getting swept by Dave Jones’ 1976 Reds and the Robert Elley’s 2017 Astros. ’31 Lefty Grove (A&C-YZ) finished the day 1-2 with a team worst 6.48 ERA. Meanwhile, the sure-fire slugger tandem of ’31 Jimmie Foxx and Al Simmons, went a combined 11 for 62, with 1 homer, 2 triples and 3 doubles and 7 RBI combined. Barry and his ’77 Phils, after starting the day 1-2, then swept the 3-0 ’17 Astros to move into first place with a 4-2 record. They would then take 2 of 3 from Dave Jones’ 1976 Reds, to finish 6-3. The 2017 Astros, led by Robert Elley, started out with a 3-0 sweep of the ’76 Reds, then getting swept by the ’77 Phils, before finishing the day with a 3-0 sweep of the ’31 A’s. The ’77 Phillies and 2017 Astros tied with 6-3 records, but Barry and his ’77 Phils won the head-to-head tie-breaker with their sweep of the Astros. Dave Jones ’76 Reds, after starting 0-3, looked to get back into contention with their 3-0 sweep of the ’31 A’s, only to lose 2 of 3 in the last series to the ’77 Phils.

Barry Boevers (’77 Phils) before the full gang arrives …

In the Right Field Division, it was a battle of the haves, and the have-nots. The front-running 2019 Astros managed by Ben Lofgren and the powerful 1936 Yankees led by Leroy Arnoldi, opened up division play with their 3 game series. Ben’s Astros set the tone early, with a 5-1 win in game 1, and after falling 4-0 in game 2, the Astros won division game 3, 7-5. This 2nd loss by the ’36 Yanks would be Leroy’s final loss in division play, as he won his final 6 games to finish 7-2. Somehow, Leroy’s “C-grade” laden rotation, pitched 4 shut-outs. The staff gave up just 18 runs in 9 games. Not to be outdone, Ben’s 2019 Astros took another 2 of 3 series, from Garth Andersen’s 1967 Cardinals, losing only game 3 by a 2-1 score. The Astros were only able to outscore the “light-hitting” ’67 Cardinals, 10-8 in their 3 game series. Needing to gain 3 wins in his final series of the day, Ben wasted no time in taking down Jim Hall and his darkhorse, 1985 Expos, in 3 games. Scores of 12-8, 5-3 and 3-1, show that the last 2 games were very close for Jim Hall, looking for his first win in tourney play. It was not to be, as the 1985 Expos finished 0-9 on the day. This is the first time in TCABT history, where we had 2 teams finish win-less in the same tourney. Garth Andersen and his ’67 Cardinals, hung tough all day, finishing 1-game under .500 in a tough division. With a 4-5 record, they were good enough to take the #8 seed as a wild-card, entering bracket-play. Andersen’s ’67 Cards swept Hall’s ’85 Expos in the opening series, and thru their first 6 games, were standing at 4-2. But 2 shutouts hurled by Leroy’s ’36 Yankee staff, were part of the 3-game sweep of the ’67 Cards in the final series of the day. Thanks to Ben’s 2019 Astros winning the opening 3-game series over Leroy’s 1936 Yankees, the 2019 Astros took 1st in the RF Division. Leroy became the #4 seed in bracket play, finishing 2nd in the RF Division.

Dave Jones (’76 Reds) and Jim Hall (’85 Expos) checking out the view, before play begins …

BRACKET PLAY RESULTS:

SeedQUARTER-FINALSG1G2G3SERIES
11910 ATHLETICS (DAVE NORLANDER)46 2
vs 
81967 CARDINALS (GARTH ANDERSEN)01 0
 
 
22019 ASTROS (BEN LOFGREN)85 2
vs 
71928 ATHLETICS (JERRY JACOBS)53 0
 
 
31977 PHILLIES (BARRY BOEVERS)138 2
vs 
62017 ASTROS (ROBERT ELLEY)36 0
 
 
41936 YANKEES (LEROY ARNOLDI)513 2
vs 
52019 TWINS (KEVIN CLUFF)46 0
SeedSEMI-FINALSG1G2G3SERIES
11910 ATHLETICS (DAVE NORLANDER)715112
vs 
41936 YANKEES (LEROY ARNOLDI)8331
 
 
22019 ASTROS (BEN LOFGREN)66 2
vs 
31977 PHILLIES (BARRY BOEVERS)13 0
 
SeedCHAMPIONSHIPG1G2G3SERIES
11910 ATHLETICS (DAVE NORLANDER)54 0
vs 
22019 ASTROS (BEN LOFGREN)106 2
With only 1 bracket series going the full 3-games, we were finished in record time, 6pm.

With only 1 of the bracket-play series going the full 3 games, it was a quick finish to TCABT-XIII. We were finished by 6:00pm Saturday. Ben Lofgren and his 2019 Astros breezed through bracket play with a perfect 6-0 record, to gain the April Trophy, Ben’s first championship in TCABT play. Ben’s road to the championship started with a 2-game sweep of Jerry Jacob’s ’28 A’s in the Quarter-finals. Then another 2-game sweep of Barry Boever’s ’77 Phillies in the Semi-finals.

Barry Boevers (’77 Phillies) battle Ben Lofgren (2019 Astros) in one Semi-final …

Meanwhile, last October’s tourney champion, Dave Norlander and his 1910 A’s took care of Garth Andersen and his 1967 Cardinals in the Quarter-finals, 2 games to none, giving up just 1 run in those 2 games. Dave then advanced to the championship series with a 2-1 series win over Leroy’s battling ’36 Yanks, scoring 26 runs in the series final 2 games. This was the only series to go the full 3 games in bracket play.

Dave Norlander (1910 A’s) vs Leroy Arnoldi (1936 Yankees) in the other Semi-final, the only bracket series to go the full 3 games … note, you need to look closely to see Leroy’s clear full-face shield … this seemed to help muffle Leroy’s “BANG! goes the DYNAMITE!” call …
Kevin with front row seats as Leroy (with an icy glare off his face shield) battles Dave …

The TCABT-XIII Championship was between Ben’s 2019 Astros and Dave’s 1910 Athletics. A nice match-up of “new” vs “old”. Power won out, as Ben’s 2019 Astros proved to be no match for the pesky 1910 A’s. The poor fielding of the 1910 A’s, was one culprit, but the relentless hitting of the 2019 Astros never slowed down. The 2019 Astros 6 wins with no defeats through bracket play, they outscored their opponents, 41-21. The 2019 Astros hit 37 homers in their 15 games rolled for the day.

Dave Norlander (1910 A’s) and Ben Lofgren (2019 Astros) battle for the championship as Jim F. observes …

A BIG congratulations to Ben Lofgren on his first TCABT Championship!!! Ben is looking forward to his younger brother, Beau Lofgren, to return to TCABT action in the coming tournaments. Due to scheduling conflicts, Beau has had to unfortunately miss the last few tourneys. The rivalry is just heating up, as Beau will be looking to match championships with brother Ben …

Dave still thinking about a potential TCABT “1st”, to become the 1st with “Legend” status in TCABT, which is getting your name on both the April and October trophies. Dave won last October’s trophy with the ’38 Yankees. Ben feeling content, if not confident, he might end up with his first TCABT Championship …
By 6pm, we had our TCABT-XIII Champion crowned … CONGRATS!!! to Ben Lofgren on left, with runner-up, Dave Norlander on right. Note the “TIN” garbage can in front of Ben … ironically, this was a pre-tournament “gag” gift to Ben from none other than Dave Norlander …
High point of my day, win or lose (more losses than wins) is posing with the tournament champion, Ben Lofgren. Incredible day for Ben going 13-2 on the day. Here’s to the next championship …

The upcoming TCABT-XIV (October Trophy) will be held Saturday, October 17th. The location will be the same, the Shakopee Youth Center in Shakopee, MN. Meanwhile, for TCABT-XV, Spring of 2021, date is TBD.

TCABT-XIV: Saturday, October 17th

TCABT-XV: Saturday, March 27th

The Home for APBA Games

A follow-up to the new Tink Larson Community Field, Waseca, MN

Current day view of the rebuilt Tink Larson Community Field

The new Tink Larson Community Field opened for the first time back in 2018, after the original Waseca Community Field, built in 1939 as part of the WPA effort, burned down in 2016.

The photo below, depicts the original Waseca Community Field (later named after Tink Larson, who still manages and manicures the ballpark).

Early sky view of Waseca Community Field, during the 1940’s.

From the following photo, you can see the same house still standing, which puts it across the street on the west side, the 1st base side.

From 3rd base side, see same white home, and smaller home to the left of the white home across the street from the ballpark.

My goal was to catch the townball team (Waseca Braves) game being played here during the summer of 2020, but with the pandemic putting a stop to public gatherings for the time being, I will have to make another stop in Waseca during the summer of 2021.

My uncle, Jack Thornby (my mom’s oldest brother) played for the Waseca Braves in the late 1940’s and into the 1950’s. He played baseball for the Minnesota Gopher baseball team, with Dick Siebert as his manager. When home for the summer, he played for the Waseca Braves.

1947 Waseca Braves baseball team Team of Southern Minny League; shown are 11 men, Front row left to right: Harold “Hal” Younghans; Bob Wichello; Dick Rediske; Pete Kramer; Ronald Kelly. Standing left to right: Bill Foster; Jack Thornby; Arleigh Kraupa; Chick Gray; Harry Anderson; Bill Severin.

My mother would have seen several of Jack’s games, however, I had not asked her much about the games before she passed away in 2014. My dad indicated that when he would watch the team play during the 1950’s after he met my mom, the player who stood out was Arleigh Kraupa, the star pitcher on the team. He is standing, 3rd from left with glasses on, next to my uncle Jack (who is standing, 2nd from left).

Arleigh Kraupa is pictured below in a photo taken approx. circa 1948, with another player, Gene Farrell.

Gene Farrell (L) and Arleigh Kraupa (R), circa approx 1948.

The new rendition of Tink Larson Community Field was built with many thanks to the hundreds of donors who are listed on the donor wall on the new grandstand. The Minnesota Twins donated $100,000. Tink Larson, who lives nearby, continues to manage and manicure the field.

Donor Wall
View from CF with the light standard shadow
View of LF from 1st base side of grandstand
CF Scoreboard, noting state championships for the 1957 Waseca Braves townball team and the 1990 Waseca Bluejays high school team.
Grandstand view of CF
Game in play at the original Waseca Community Field
The same view today
Tink Larson talks Waseca Baseball and what the ballpark has meant to him over the years