Baseball / 2019 CRCBL Midseason Update

2019 CRCBL Midseason Update

Date:  Source: Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League

By Matt Cohen 

The 2019 CRCBL season has reached its midway point with each team now having played 20 games. In this post I’ll do a quick look at the first half for each of the six teams and take a look at the league award races. All stats and records are as of June 29. 

Bethesda Big Train

It hasn’t taken long for the Big Train to emerge as the best and most complete team in the CRCBL. The Big Train lead the league in both ERA (3.44) and batting average (.290). No other team has an ERA below 5.00. The .290 batting average is 16 points better than the next closest team. After staring the summer 2-2, the Big Train have gone 15-3. The team has thrown two no-hitters. Everything is clicking for Sal Colangelo’s team, a group that is a clear step above the rest of the league. 

Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts

The T-Bolts sit in second place, but still five games back of the Big Train at 11-9 overall. It’s a team led by its offense, which is second in the league with a .274 average. Four hitters with appearances in at least half of the T-Bolts games have batting averages above .320. Four players have double digit RBIs. Pitching has hurt the T-Bolts mightily, with a team ERA ranking last in the CRCBL. It’s a team that has a shown the offense to keep up with any team in the Ripken League, but to make any run at a title, Doug Remer’s group will need better pitching. 

D.C. Grays

The D.C. Grays have embraced the three true outcomes approach. The team leads the CRCBL In home runs with 17, but is second worst in batting average at .238. It’s been an inconsistent offense with five games having scored double digit runs, but also six games with three or fewer runs. The pitching staff has a team ERA of 5.00, but that is still good enough for the second best in the Ripken League. The Grays started 4-0 for the first time in Reggie Terry’s tenure, and now sit at 11-11. 

Gaithersburg Giants

A roster loaded with big school names has had a similar season to what the Grays have experienced. The Giants started 5-1, but have gone 5-11 since. Immediately after the 5-1 start, the Giants lost six straight games to fall to 10-12. Though despite the sub-.500 record, the Giants are just two games back of a first round bye. The 5.98 ERA is the third best in the league, but the .225 batting average is the worst in the league. Cade Doughty is the only hitter keeping this team afloat. 

Alexandria Aces

The Aces started 0-6. They were shutout in two of those six losses. They were at the bottom of the league standings. While the team is still second to last, the Aces won five of seven right after the six-game skid. Alexandria has cooled off a bit since and sit at 7-12. The Aces are stocked with young talented highlighted by two incoming Vanderbilt freshmen. The potential of the team has been showcased in flashes, but the Aces haven’t been able to be consistent. 

FCA Braves

The Braves have stumbled into the midway point, losing eight of their last 10 games. That 2-8 record has caused the Braves to plummet to the bottom of the league standings. 9.5 games back of the first place Big Train. The Braves are 7-14 overall, a game back of the fifth place Aces. The Braves are fourth in the league in both batting average and ERA yet are in last place. The Braves have, however, allowed the most runs in the league and scored the fewest runs. Getting runners on base hasn’t been the problem for the Braves, driving them in has been. 

MVP Leaders

1) Jacob Southern, Bethesda Big Train

 Southern has been the best hitter in the league’s best lineup. The catcher is the league leader in both home runs and RBIs while also posting a .325 batting average. 

2) Cade Doughty, Gaithersburg Giants

Doughty has been carrying the Giants offense thus far in 2019. His .405 batting average is third best in the CRCBL. His four home runs are tied for the third most and his 16 RBIs are tied for the fourth most. Doughty is the only triple-crown threat this summer. 

3) Tony Gallo, Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts

For much of the first half of the season, the T-Bolts had the league’s leading offense. Gallo is second in the league with five home runs tied for third with 19 RBIs. 

Pitcher of the Year Leaders

1)Dalton Ponce, Bethesda Big Train

Ponce is at the forefront of multiple pitching categories this season. Ponce leads the CRCBL with four wins and is fifth with a 2.57 ERA. His 30 strikeouts are the third most in the League. Ponce was also a part of the Big Train’s first no-hitter. 

2) Ryan Okuda, Bethesda Big Train 

Okuda was the Big Train’s opening night starter and hasn’t been far behind Ponce. Okuda has three wins and has a 0.95 ERA. His 26 strikeouts are third most in the League. He’s dominated the T-Bolts top lineup twice. 

T-3) Reid McLaughlin, D.C. Grays

McLaughlin does have a lower ERA than Okuda at 0.52. He’s allowed just one total run and eight total hits all season. McLaughlin hasn’t allowed a base runner over his last seven innings. What’s holding him back in just having 17 innings pitched and a 1-0 record over four starts. 

T-3) Chase Lee, Bethesda Big Train 

Lee has been nothing short of dominant out of the Big Train bullpen. Despite just 18.1 innings, Lee leads the league with 25 strikeouts. His three saves are the most in the league. That all comes with a 1.47 ERA.