Finale: Strong Finish at AAA OBA's, News, Major Rookie, 2017, Comp (Oakridge Baseball)

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Finale: Strong Finish at AAA OBA's
Submitted By Kent Weber on Thursday, September 21, 2017
After going 44-2 and winning AA OBA’s in 2016, the 2008-born TinCaps embraced the next challenge with vigor.  All year long we sought out every AAA Tournament and premium exhibition opponent we could play, with the goal of learning and improving.  And we did.   The boys in Red and Green accumulated a strong 39-7-1 record going into the hyper-competitive 20-Team OBA finale. 

Game #1 caught us by surprise.  Whether it was nerves, our 2nd game of the year under the lights, or just our formidable opponent, our bats fell quiet and we and lost 0-5 to Whitby, in our only shutout of the year.   Whitby had several losses against teams we had wins against, but they played very well and went on to pull out three one-run victories en route to becoming finalists.  Kudos to Whitby!
The TinCaps rebounded on Saturday in games 2 and 3, putting up convincing 8 and 10-run victories over Oshawa and Hamilton to draw a Bye in round 4.  On Sunday in Round 5, with 7 of 20 teams remaining, we faced the Mississauga Majors (a tough team, but one we had beaten in our only previous meeting).  The boys stranded 12-baserunners over 7 innings, but could only get 2 runs across.  The game was up for grabs down to the final out in the bottom of the 7th, with the tying run on base, but in the end we came up short in a tough season-ending loss.
The 20-team OBA Tournament was a great experience and underscored two things:  #1 the boys should be very proud of their top-7 finish against the best 20 teams in Ontario.  And #2, they should keep aiming high.  Anything can happen at this level of competition.  3 of the final 4 games played to determine the OBA winner were all decided by 1-run.  That’s how close we were.  
During 2017, the TinCaps managed to play 12 out of the other 19 AAA teams who attended OBAs.  The boys went undefeated against 7 of them, lost to 3 of them, split games with 2 of them, and will have to wait til next year to play the other 7.

- Final Record:  41-9-1
- AAA Cambridge Cubs Classic (12 Teams):  Finalist
- AAA Mississauga SW Tourney (12 Teams):  2-1 record, lost the run-differential tiebreaker-bid to Semi’s
- AA   Bob Stark Tournament (10 Teams):  Champion
- AAA Green & Gold LaSalle Tourney (10 Teams):  Semi-Finalist
- LDBA Pennant (9 Teams) Champion:  record 21-1
- LDBA Playoffs (6 Teams):   Champion  4-0
- AAA Major Rookie OBA’s:  Top-7 Finish, 20 Teams

In sum, it was a great year, learning to compete as a team against the very best, with big strides toward our 4 primary goals, written out during TeamBuilding:  1) Selflessness, putting Team first, 2) Growth as players and people, 3) Mental Toughness and a Competitive Spirit, and 4) having fun.   
Hats off to a special group for a great 2017!

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