European Champions Cup: HCAW Wins Title, Tops 1949 Parma 11-4

An Amsterdam Pirates pitcher delivers at the European Champions Cup. (Photo by Bob Prins/WBSC Europe)

By Matthew Tallarini
World Baseball Network

The European Champions Cup played the Semifinals and Relegation rounds at Rob Hoffmann Vallei in Bussum, The Netherlands, and Loek Loevendie, Amsterdam, The Netherlands on Friday.

At the end of the European Champions Cup, all the club teams in Europe will cbe re-ranked after both the Champions Cup and the European Confederation Cup, each of which will finish this weekend. The World Club Rankings were last updated from November 16, 2022, by the website euroTopteam.com.

Saturday June 10, 2023

Gold Medal Game: Rob Hoffman Vallei, Bussum, The Netherlands
1949 Parma Baseball Club (ITA) 4, HCAW (NED) 11

HCAW won gold at the 2023 European Champions Cup, beating Parma 11-4 and medaling for the first time since the 2005 tournament, where they lost to Grosseto Baseball Club in the gold medal game.

The HCAW pitching staff allowed six hits, four earned runs, walked one and struck out six during the gold medal victory on Saturday.

Parma got on the board in the top of the third when Noel Gonzalez drilled a double to left center field, scoring Riccardo Flisi. The next batter, Manuel Joseph, ripped an RBI single to center field and Gonzalez came in to score to make it 2-0.

In the bottom of the fourth inning, HCAW’s Victor Draijer knocked a solo home run over the left field wall to make it 2-1.

Parma starting pitcher Pablo Guillen went five innings allowing three hits, one earned run, walked one, and struck out seven.

During the top of the sixth, Parma’s Cesare Astorri drove a two-run double down the left field line, scoring Luis Gonzalez and Alberto Mineo to go up 4-1.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, HCAW put up seven runs on the board, starting when Jeandro Tromp ripped a single through the left side of the infield and Delano Selassa came in to score to make it 4-2. A few batters later, HCAW first baseman Shurman Marlin cranked a three run home run over the center field wall to go up 6-4.

Later in the inning, Max Draijer joined the RBI party and drilled a two-run home run down the left field line to scoring Bob Der Meer and make it 8-4.

HCAW starting pitcher Kaj Timmermans threw six innings, allowing five hits, four earned runs, walking one batter, and striking out two en route to receiving the win in the gold medal game.  HCAW’s offense tallied up 14 hits in the gold medal game.

Parma, with 15 total titles at the European Champions Cup, received their fifth silver medal in the event.

Relegation Round: Loek Loevendie Ballpark, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
SKSB Arrows Ostrava (CZE) 10, Draci Brno (CZE) 14

Draci Brno beat their Extraliga rival the SKSB Arrows Ostrava on Saturday during the final game of the Relegation Round of the 2023 European Champions Cup 14-10.

In the top of the first, Ostrava’s Matyas Kozel drilled an RBI single through the right side of the infield and Rory Brennen came in to score the first run of the game. The next batter, catcher Mario Gottschall, lofted a sacrifice fly to center field and Matyas Novotny came in to score to extend the lead to 2-0.

During the bottom of the first inning, Draci Brno second baseman Martin Cervenka laced a bases clearing three-run double down the left field line, scoring Tomas Chadim, Martin Kalabek, and Milan Prokop to put Brno up 3-2. The next batter, Adam Prudil, hit a sacrifice fly to center field to score Cervenka and make it 4-2.

In the bottom of the second, Draci Brno added a five-run cushion, starting when Chadim laced a double to left field, scoring Jakub Winkler to extend the lead to three runs at 5-2. The next batter, center fielder Michal Sindelka, roped a double to left center field, scoring Chadim to make it 6-2. Draci Brno’s offense did not look back the rest of the way as they ripped 12 hits during Saturday’s win.

Draci Brno starting pitcher Vojtech Ventruba threw four innings, allowing four hits, two earned runs, walking two batters, and striking out three during his performance.

Arrows starting pitcher Alexander Sin went three innings, allowing six hits, six earned runs, walking four batters, and striking out two and received the loss. The Arrows pitching staff allowed 13 earned runs, walked 11 batters, and struck out four in their final game of the 2023 European Champions Cup.

Relegation Round: Rob Hoffmann Vallei, Bussam, The Netherlands
Untouchables Paderborn (GER) 6, Rouen Huskies (FRA) 4

Untouchables Paderborn beat the Rouen Huskies in the last game of the Relegation Round of the European Champions Cup 6-4, coming back from a two-run deficit in the top of the ninth inning.

The Paderborn pitching staff combined to allow just four hits, three earned runs, five walks, and struck out seven during Saturday’s win. Paderborn starting pitcher Christopher Hanson threw four innings, allowing one hit, no earned runs, walking one batter, and striking out two.

The first run of the game did not come until the top of the sixth when Paderborn third baseman Ladislaus Landwehr doubled to right center field, scoring Luca Rammelmann to go up 1-0.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, Louis Brainville helped the Huskies get on the board with a two-run single to center field, scoring Joris Bert and Gabriel Harrison to give Rouen a 2-1 lead.

During the top of the seventh inning, Paderborn tied the game up at two apiece when Bjarne Reinhardt came in to score on a wild pitch to make it 2-2.

In the bottom of the seventh inning, catcher Dylan Gleeson broke the tie with a single to right field, scoring Joseph Toubeaux to make it 3-2.

The Huskies added one more run during the bottom of the eighth when Toubeaux reached on a and Brainville came in to score to make it 4-2.

During the top of the ninth, Paderborn scored four runs to get back into the game. The rally started with Maurice Bendrien’s RBI single to right field, scoring Nicolas Gobert to make it 4-3. Rammelmann came up once again and reached on a fielder’s choice,, scoring Bjarne Reinhardt to tie the game up at four apiece. A few batters later, Finn Bergmann walked with the bases loaded and Henry Huttner came in to score for an Untouchables 5-4 lead.

Huskies starting pitcher Quentin Moulin threw 6.1 innings, allowing five hits, two earned runs, walking five batters, and striking out 10.

Huskies relief pitcher Thibault Mercadier received the loss on Saturday as he went 1.2 innings allowing one hit, three earned runs, walking two batters, and striking out three with the Huskies going winless during the 2023 European Champions Cup.

Bronze Medal Game: Loek Loevendie Ballpark, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Bonn Capitals (GER) 6, Amsterdam Pirates (NED) 12

The Amsterdam Pirates won the bronze medal at the 2023 European Champions Cup, beating the Bonn Capitals 12-6 on Saturday.

The Capitals led 4-0  early after key doubles by Terrell Joyce in the top of the second inning and Wilson Lee in the top of the third inning. 

The Pirates got on the board in the bottom of the fifth when Jason Jakobus hit into a fielder’s choice and Capitals third baseman Luis Martin made a throwing error, allowing Oliver Van Der Wijst to score to make it 4-1.

Pirates starting pitcher Michael Bennet threw 2.1 innings allowing seven hits, four earned runs, no walks, and two strikeouts.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Pirates got back in the game when Luca Pastor laced a double to left, scoring Van Der Wijst to tie the game up at four a piece. The next batter Jakobus ripped an RBI single to center field, and Pastor came in to score to go up 5-4, as the Pirates offense scored four runs in the bottom of the sixth inning.

The Pirates offense torched the Capitals bullpen in the bottom of the seventh inning putting up seven runs. Denzel Richardson continued his hot bat in the tournament as he started the scoring rout with a double to left center field as Madera came in to score to make it 6-4.

The Pirates offense batted around in the seventh, and Richardson laced a RBI single for his second hit of the inning, scoring Roelie Henrique to extend the lead to 12-4.

The Capitals pitching staff allowed 11 hits, seven earned runs, five unearned runs, walked eight batters, and struck out six. Capitals starting pitcher Yanni Orfanidis threw one inning, allowing one hit, no earned runs, walking two batters, and struck out four receiving a no-decision.

The Amsterdam Pirates received their third bronze medal in the European Champions Cup. The Pirates have medaled four times at the WBSC Europe Champions Cup.

Friday June 9, 2023

Relegation Round: Loek Loevendie Ballpark, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Rouen Huskies (FRA) 1, Draci Brno (CZE) 6

Draci Brno took care of business on Friday winning the first game of the Relegation Round against the Rouen Huskies by the score of 6-1.

Draci Brno starting pitcher Jhenderson Hurtado and relief pitcher David Mergans were stellar Friday, combining for four hits allowed, no earned runs, walking five batters, and striking out nine.

Mergans earned the win yesterday, pitching five innings allowing one hit, no earned runs, walking two batters, and striking out four during the first game of the Relegation Round.

During the bottom of the first inning, Draci Brno got on the board first when Jakub Hajtmar singled up the middle, scoring Filip Mostek for the first run of the game.

In the bottom of the second inning, Draci Brno‘s Mostek delivered an RBI single to right center field, scoring Tomas Chadim to extend the lead to 3-0. The next batter, Arnost Dubovy laced a double down the left field line and Jakub Winkler came in to score.

Draci Brno’s offense kept pouring it on, putting up ten hits against the Huskies pitching staff.

Huskies starting pitcher Alexander Mackinnon went five innings, allowing nine hits, five earned runs, walking four batters, and striking out five along with receiving the loss on Friday.

Relegation Round: Rob Hoffmann Vallei, Bussum, The Netherlands

Untouchables Paderborn (GER) 5, SKSB Arrows Ostrava (CZE) 7

The SKSB Arrows Ostrava won their third game of the 2023 European Champions Cup on Thursday, beating Untouchables Paderborn 7-5.

During the bottom of the first inning, Ostrava got on the board first as Jakub Grepl singled to right field, the baseball got past Luca Rammelmann’s glove and rolled all the way to the wall, allowing Rory Brennen-Graf, Jakub Malik, and Matyas Kozel to score to make it 3-0. The next batter, Mario Gottschall, helped Ostrava extend the lead to four with a sacrifice fly to center field, scoring Grepl for the fourth run of the game.

The Untouchables did not get on the board until the top of the fourth, when Ladislaus Landwehr hit an RBI single to left field, scoring Rammelmann to cut the lead to 4-1. The next batter, center fielder Bjarne Reinhardt, lofted a sacrifice fly to center field and Christiaan Beyers came in to score to make it 4-2.

Arrows starting pitcher Jiri Hikl threw four innings, allowing four hits, no earned runs, no walks, and struck out three.

The Arrows added more insurance runs in the bottom of the fourth inning when Jakub Kubica laced a single to shortstop Darrion Richards. Richards overthrew first base, resulting in Mario Gottschall and Daniel Cerny coming in to score to extend the lead to four runs at 6-2.

In the top of the eighth inning, the Untouchables cut the lead to one run when Beyers drove a three-run home run over the left field wall scoring Richards and Rammelmann to make it 6-5.

The Arrows tallied 10 hits and capitalized on the Untouchables’ four errors during Friday’s game and won their third game of the 2023 European Champions Cup by the score of 7-5.

Arrows relief pitcher Matyas Pjontek went two innings, allowing three hits, no earned runs, no walks, and striking out two to receive the win.

Untouchables starting pitcher Matt Kemp threw four innings allowing eight hits, two earned runs, no walks, and struck out five receiving the loss on Friday.

Semifinal: Rob Hoffman Vallei, Bussum, The Netherlands
Amsterdam Pirates (NED) 3, HCAW 4 (NED)

HCAW beat their Dutch rivals, the Amsterdam Pirates, during the 2023 European Champions Cup 4-3 to advance to the championship game in dramatic fashion, when Kevin Dirksen was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 10th, allowing Bob Van Der Meer to cross the plate with the winning run.

HCAW’s relief pitcher Lars Huijer picked up the win during Friday’s game and threw eight innings, allowing one hit, no earned runs, walking one batter, and striking out eight.

In the top of the first inning, the Pirates got on the board when Denzel Richardson lifted a solo home run deep over the center field wall.

During the top of the second inning, the Pirates extended the lead to three when Luca Pastor drilled a two-run home run over the right center field wall scoring Duco Nuijten to make it 3-0.

HCAW starting pitcher Dennis Burgersdijk threw just two innings, allowing four hits, three earned runs, walking one batter, and striking out one.

In the bottom of the second inning, HCAW finally got on the board when Max Draijer laced a double to right center field, scoring Jair Van Borkulo to cut the lead to 3-1.

During the bottom of the fifth inning, Van Borkulo reached on a fielder’s choice to shortstop, sending Jeandro Tromp in to score and make it 3-2.

Amsterdam Pirates starting pitcher Jelle Van Der Lelie went 4.1 innings, allowing five hits, two earned runs, walking two batters, and striking out seven.

In the bottom of the eighth inning, HCAW tied the game up at three when Delano Selassa sat back and ripped an RBI single to center field, scoring Draijer.

During the bottom of the 10th inning with the score tied up at three, Pirates relief pitcher Pim Vijfvinkel attempted to go three innings out of the bullpen, and when Dirksen came to the plate with the bases loaded and one out, he was hit by a pitch with bases loaded, scoring Van Der Meer, ending the game. 

Semifinal: Loek Loevendie Ballpark, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Bonn Capitals (GER) 3, 1949 Parma Baseball Club (ITA) 13 F/7

1949 Parma Baseball Club beat the Bonn Capitals in the 2023 European Champions Cup semifinals on Friday 13-3 in seven innings, sending them to their third consecutive championship game at the event.

Parma’s pitching staff combined for five hits allowed, three earned runs, walked five batters, and struck out eight during Friday’s win.

Parma starting pitcher Luis Lugo threw three innings, allowing four hits, three earned runs, walking two batters, and striking out two.

Parma relief pitcher Matteo Bocchi went four innings allowing one hit, no earned runs, walking three batters, and striking out six during his performance. Parma’s offense had 14 hits on Friday en route to their fourth win of the 2023 European Champions Cup.

Capitals starting pitcher Jordan Lucas went one inning allowing five hits, four earned runs, walking no batters, and striking out one during Friday’s loss.

Parma left fielder Stefano Desimoni went for 4-for-5 with four hits, scoring three runs, and one RBI.

Parma center fielder Manuel Timo went 3-for-3 with two walks, three hits, and three runs scored.

Parma designated hitter Cesare Astorri had two runs, three hits, and two RBI’s during Friday’s semifinal win and third consecutive European Champions Cup Finals appearance.

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