Note: This is a series of “on site” articles written partially during and partially after the NWLA Tournament.
Pool play at the NWLA Tournament. In the grand scheme of things, it really doesn’t mean a whole lot. There’s your try-hards who throw their best guys the whole tournament, then there’s teams with incredible depth who throw pitchers who could be #2’s or 3’s on any other team. Then there’s our plan. Our plan is to throw our three rookies. They have their strengths on the mound, but don’t necessarily have ace level stuff. Let’s take a look at the matchups for pool play:
GAME 1: HFWB
Probable Starter: Ari Knill
Knillmunn is the best of the three rookies on the mound, possessing very effective stuff for his speed. His control is key, and an off day can mean bad things. He gets the nod in game one against the toughest opponent.
Result: Got the start, let up one run, lost.
Game 2: BWBLPA
Probable Starter: Dylan Frankel
2 Chainzz was at the NWLA Tournament last year as a coach, so he knows the game. He’s a strike thrower, but doesn’t have a ton in the arsenal. He’s another effective pitcher but self-admittedly the worst of the rookies.
Result: Started, gave up a bomb on his first career pitch. Gave up three more runs en route to the loss.
Game 3: SWBL
Probable Starter: Jordan Benzing
Buneth might throw the hardest out of the rookies and has deceptively good stuff. This team hits the ball very well so a harder thrower might be the perfect matchup. Another guy who needs to have control.
Result: Started, gave up three, just missed out on the win.
Overall manager reaction: This was a nearly best case scenario for our three guys. They pitched well enough to win every game.