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.

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