The Times
  • PGCBL: DiamondDawgs rained out in season finale


    The 2011 season ended a few hours earlier than the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs had planned when rain forced them to cancel Wednesday’s scheduled game against the Amsterdam Mohawks.

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  • The 2011 season ended a few hours earlier than the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs had planned when rain forced them to cancel Wednesday’s scheduled game against the Amsterdam Mohawks.
    By game time, all of the player had departed Veterans Memorial Park, leaving manager Troy Gerlach and members of the team’s off-the-field staff to begin packing away the team’s gear for 2012.
    The Watertown Wizards were beaten 8-4 by Newark’s Pilots in their final game Wednesday and Albany’s Dutchmen split a doubleheader. Like Mohawk Valley, Watertown and Albany each had one game that was not made up and the three teams all finished with matching 18-29 records, worst among the new league’s eight teams. The DiamondDawgs won eight of their final 11 contests to avoid the stigma of having the worst mark to itself.
    First and second places in both divisions were separated by half a game. Glens Falls entered Wednesday’s double header needing either one win of its own or a loss by Amsterdam’s Mohawks to clinch the top spot in the East Division and the league’s best overall record. Mohawk Valley and the Mohawks were canceling their game as Albany was beating the Golden Eagles 3-2 in Game 1 at East Field. The loss dropped the Glens Falls into a temporary tie with Amsterdam at 30-17 but the Golden Eagles responded with a combined six-hit shutout from former Section II star Neil Fryer and reliever Kyle Ruchim to beat the Dutchmen 7-0.
    At 25-20, Cooperstown’s Hawkeyes finished half a game ahead of Newark atop the West Division. While Newark was beating Watertown to keep the pressure on the Hawkeyes, Cooperstown was a rain-shortened 5-3 winner in the first game of a scheduled doubleheader against the Elmira Pioneers. The second game in Elmira was rained out as weather and field conditions deteriorated. Had the second game been played and won by Elmira, Cooperstown would still have won the division in a tie-breaker on the strength of a 6-2 head-to-head record against the Pilots.
    In the East, Glens Falls was 5-3 against Amsterdam during the regular season but the Mohawks won three of the final teams’ four meetings.
    The playoffs begin Friday with best-of-three series sending Newark to Cooperstown’s Doubleday Field and Amsterdam to Glens Falls where it won its last two visits. The series switch sites Saturday and return to the upper seeds’ homes, if necessary, Sunday.
    The best-of-three championship series begins Tuesday at the home of the East Division champion.
    Individually, Watertown’s Erick Gaylord, an outfielder from Campbell University, fell short in his quest for the league’s triple crown. Gaylord led the league with 10 home runs and 42 runs batted in while finishing fourth with a .360 batting average. Gaylord also tied for second with 37 runs scored, one behind Amsterdam’s Zach Shank, led the league with 100 total bases and finished one stolen base behind Newark’s Michael Bolling’s league-high 22.
    Page 2 of 2 - Cooperstown’s Bryan Aanderud edged Elmira’s Ryan Normoyle to win the batting title by .00025 after both finished at .379. Josh Anderson of Glens Falls was third in batting average (.368), tied for second in home runs (nine) and fourth in runs batted in (38) despite missing 11 games.
    Newark’s Dominick Ruscitti won six of his seven pitching decisions and led the league with a 1.82 ERA. Amsterdam’s Mark Leiter Jr. struck out a league-best 74 batters in 54 innings.
    As a team, Amsterdam led the league in batting average (.288) and ERA (3.37). Elmira batted .281 as a team and Glens Falls was second with a 4.09 ERA.
    Locally, the DiamondDawgs were fourth in the eight-team league with a .265 batting average and sixth with a 4.83 ERA. Auburn University outfielder Cullen Wacker ranked 15th with his team-high .311 batting average while University of Southern Maine right-hander Dustin Stanton’s 4.40 ERA was 12th among qualifiers.
    Mohawk Valley’s 101 errors were 19 more than any other team’s total. Glens Falls committed a league-low 59.
    Glens Falls and Newark were the only teams to complete all 48 scheduled regular season games.
    Compiled From Times Staff Reports