I played a PCR Series back in 2014 with another tabletop baseball game and intended to play a PCR each Spring. I did not follow through with that for a few years…
This year, the PCR Series returns - this time courtesy of APBA Baseball.
At the time of the tournament, I only owned the complete 1984 APBA season.
I gathered all of my random APBA teams and rounded out the field of candidates to an even twenty by adding in the 2016 World Series Teams I had picked up late last year. Enter the PCR Board of Comissioners (a D20) and two rolls later the two teams for the 2018 series were determined and phone calls were made.
The two chosen teams:
2013 Baltimore Orioles
1908 Brooklyn Superbas
This will be a 3-game series, with Games 1 and 2 alternating which team is the Home team. For Game 3, the PCR Board of Commissioners will determine the Home team.
I got the 2013 Baltimore team with my original order of the APBA Baseball game a few years ago.
I was looking for a baseball game to settle in with and the game came with four teams I could play a few games with while researching if the game was going to be something I would like. My 3-game research series pitted the 2013 Boston Red Sox against these very same 2013 Baltimore Orioles.
After I decided to stick with APBA Baseball, I strongly considered ordering the 1908 season. I have read a few things on that season, most keenly, the book “Crazy ’08” which is excellent and one of my favorite books ever. To get to play with the 1908 Superbas was going to be a treat. I spent a good hour looking into the Superbas, getting their probable lineups straight, working out their pitching staff and again realizing why I love baseball.
I set lineups for each team and also determined the top three pitchers for each team.
I didn’t think the Superbas had a chance. In 1908 they finished 53-101, 46 games back of the Cubs and only 4 games ahead of the basement-dwelling St. Louis Cardinals. The lineup I set had them just edging into the Fielding 2 rating.
Baltimore looked too overwhelming. Their defense added up to 48 - the highest total I had yet seen in an APBA baseball game. Their speed was also amazing as five players are rated Fast. If Baltimore hits at all, they will pound the ball.
The only hope for 1908 Brooklyn seemed to be rest with their starting pitchers. The top three I had chosen were each rated B and all looked to pitch deep into games.
For each and every PCR Series, there is no Designated Hitter and starting pitchers will stay in the game as long as they can.
1908 Brooklyn: Nap Rucker (17-19 2.08)
2013 Baltimore: Chris Tillman (16-7 3.71)
Both teams struggle through the first three innings.
Brooklyn can’t get a ball out of the infield until Rucker flies out to Jones in centerfield in the Third Inning.
Markakis strikes out leading off the game for the Orioles and Baltimore chips off a few hits but can’t get anything going.
In the Fourth Inning, Brooklyn’s Sheehan doubles, Baltimore’s Hardy bobbles a ball at short and Lumley draws a walk to load the bases with two outs. Maloney flies to center to end the inning.
In the Baltimore Fourth Inning Jones leads off with a walk but Davis and Hardy strike out in order to end the inning. It seems like the Orioles confidence is waning.
The Brooklyn Fifth Inning begins with a Lewis strikeout, then a Bergen single before Rucker wiffs. Sheehan singles and Hummel draws a walk to load the bases once more. Pattee slaps one to short and Hardy again bobbles the ball allowing Bergen to score. The Superbas take the lead and the bases remain loaded. Jordan then wallops a drive into the left field corner for a bases-clearing triple. Brooklyn ends the inning ahead 4-0.
For Baltimore, Cassilla and Tillman strikeout in the Fifth Inning. Machado strikes out in the Sixth Inning and Wieters, Davis and Hardy strike out in back-to-back-to-back style in the Seventh Inning.
Tillman is relieved in the Eighth Inning after being pinch-hit for. Brooklyn can muster no further runs.
McClouth leads off the Oriole Eighth Inning with a single, steals second, then scores on a single by Cassilla. Baltimore gets on the board.
Rucker closes out the Orioles and the game in the Ninth Inning, leaving Baltimore looking rather pedestrian.
Final Score: 1908 Brooklyn 4
2013 Baltimore 1
Nap Rucker’s day: 9.0 IP 4Hits 1Run 9K 2BB
Baltimore: Jason Hammel (7-9 4.97)
Brooklyn: Kaiser Wilhelm (16-22 1.87)
Baltimore bats first. Machado and Jones are strikeout victims in the First Inning, while Davis and Wieters strike out in the Second Inning.
Brooklyn gets going immediately as Sheehan leads off with a Walk and Hummel moves him over to second base. Pattee draws another Walk before Jordan and Lumley both single to drive in both baserunners. Ritter leads off the Superba Seond inning with a double but is stranded there. Brooklyn leads 2-0 after two innings.
The Baltimore Third Inning begins with two fly outs. McClouth and Machado pound back-to-back doubles before Markakis clubs a home run. Davis leads off the Oriole Fourth Inning with a solo blast. McClouth leads off the Fifth Inning with a rocket of his own and after five innings, the Orioles lead 5-2.
Brooklyn cobbles together a few hits and draws a few walks through the Sixth Inning, but cannot come up with a cutch hit to bring some runs across the plate.
With two outs in the Baltimore Seventh, McClouth reaches base on a single and Machado whacks one into the outfield stands to extend the Oriole lead to 7-2.
The Superbas manage only one hit in the last three innings and Wilhelm is removed at the end of the Eighth for a pinch hitter.
Baltimore bashed the ball all day, not a surprise for them but a bit of a surprise they did so off of Wilhelm.
Final Score: 2013 Baltimore 7
1908 Brooklyn 2
McClouth/Machado/Markakis for the game: 7-13 2Doubles 3HR 6Runs 6RBI
Baltimore: Miguel Gonzalez (11-8 3.78)
Brooklyn: Harry McIntyre (11-20 2.69)
Baltimore batted first and Nate McClouth continued his excellent PCR Series performance with a single. McClouth scored on an immediate double by Machado. Davis singled home Machado and Hardy crushed a two-run shot to put the Orioles up 4-0.
Sheehan led off the game for Brooklyn with a single but was then erased in a double play triggered from the bat of Pattee.
McClouth led off the Second Inning with another single and stole second base right away though he was stranded there.
Jordan singled for the Superbas to lead off the Second Inning and was put down in double-play right after. Maloney then smacked a surprising solo home run that put Brooklyn on the board.
Bergen doubled to begin the Brooklyn Third Inning. McIntyre moved him expertly over to second base where Hummel eventually singled him home. At the end of three innings, Baltimore led 4-2.
Baltimore could only manage one hit and two walks off of McIntyer through the top of the Eighth Inning.
Sheehan led off the Brooklyn Eighth Inning with a solid single. Hummel got him over to second base. Pattee then flied out. Jordan rapped a hit through the infield that scored Sheehan and left Jordan on second base after the thrown home from Markakis. Gonzalez was lifted for Jim Johnson. Johnson coaxed Lumley to ground out Machado to end the inning. Johnson shut down the Superbas in the Ninth Inning to preserve the win for the Orioles.
Brooklyn nearly came back all the way to tie it but fell just short. McIntyre settled down and so did the Baltimore bats.
Final Score: 2013 Baltimore 4
1908 Brooklyn 3
McInTyre’s day: 9.0 IP 8Hits 2BB 5K 4Runs