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Old 02-24-2017, 04:49 AM   #1041
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British Baseball News
Saturday 10 August
1889

With Hackney losing to Marylebone on Wednesday, it is just Kensington and Putney tied at the top of the Metropolitan League this evening after the teams who have won the last eight titles between them both recorded two victories. Hackney have a chance to catch Putney when the two meet this Wednesday. Rotherhithe slipped two games behind after a shock defeat to last placed Limehouse today, while Clapham are now three back after losing both their games this week. In the Suburban League, the picture is unchanged as Wimbledon and Harrow both won twice, while champions Croydon did likewise. Wimbledon remain two games ahead of Harrow and four clear of Croydon, who are clinging to a slim hope of retaining their title, but Ealing's chance of getting into the race looks to have gone after they lost twice to Enfield.

Lancashire League champions Rochdale have slipped a game behind Manchester in the standings after losing in extra innings to St. Helens on Wednesday. Manchester beat last placed Toxteth twice and have now gone through four successive games without allowing a single run. Liverpool are still three games back after beating Irwell twice, while fourth placed Moss Grove are up to a winning record after two wins over Blackburn. Yorkshire League teams only played once this week and Sheffield remain two games ahead of York after both won. Sheffield have now won their last seven as they begin to look strong favourites for a sixth title in ten seasons. West of Hull have a stronger grip on third place after they also extended their winning run to seven, while East of Hull lost to York.

The Central League and Northern Combination also had just one game this week and in the Central League, there were also wins for all the leading teams. Leicester crushed third placed Sherwood to remain five games ahead of Cannon Hill, who shut out Walsall 3-0. Newcastle continued to trouble the leading teams in the Northern Combination as they followed their two wins over Stockton last week by beating Middlesbrough today. Stockton took full advantage with a win over Darlington to draw level at the top again, while Sunderland's victory over The Hartlepools was their fifth in succession and moves them within two of the leaders. In the Western League, the only question for Bath is whether they can secure first place in the English Section by the end of August after a win over Cheltenham extended their lead to a massive ten games. Cardiff have a stronger position in the Welsh Section having beaten Rhondda today to move three games clear.

In Scotland, it was a bad week for Caledonian League leaders Glasgow who were beaten by both Dundee and Leith. Their lead is reduced from four games to three, but it could have been worse had second placed Moncreiffe Island not lost to Kirkcaldy this afternoon. The Grange and Leith are four games back in a tie for third, but of late neither have really shown the form that will be needed to catch Glasgow. In Ireland, Sailortown's hopes of retaining the title have suffered a blow with the news that first choice pitcher Herbert Keane will miss the rest of the season with injury. Without him, they lost twice this week including a defeat to Clonard today which closed the gap between the two to a single game. They will be tied if Clonard can also win Wednesday's return game. In Dublin, Drumcondra's lead remains a comfortable eight games despite losing to Trinity today, as second placed Kilmainham were beaten by lowly Rathmines.
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Old 02-24-2017, 10:33 AM   #1042
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Saturday 17 August
1889

Kensington have strengthened their bid for a third successive Metropolitan League title with dramatic late comebacks against both Highgate and the City of London Club this week. With Putney losing at Greenwich today, Kensington now have a one game lead at the top of the standings. Hackney have fallen two back after losing to Putney on Wednesday, while Clapham won twice but remain three behind. Rotherhithe's hopes are fading after two defeats dropped them four games back, alongside Woolwich and the City Club. Harrow's defeat at West Ham today saw them fall three games behind Wimbledon in the Suburban League, after an eighth inning turnaround took Wimbledon past Enfield. Champions Croydon have now won their last six games and are just one behind Harrow, but still trail Wimbledon by four with fourteen to play.

An extra-innings defeat to last placed Toxteth on Wednesday could prove costly for Lancashire League champions Rochdale, as it allowed Manchester to move two games clear at the top. With two wins during the week, Manchester have now taken their last eight games and look in good shape to take the title for the first time in five years. Defeat to Halifax on Wednesday looked to be a crushing blow to York's hopes in the Yorkshire League, with Sheffield moving three games ahead at the top. York were boosted by Sheffield's loss to in-form West of Hull today though, as they beat Woodhouse to close the gap back to two. West of Hull have now won their last nine and are comfortably clear in third place, but are surely too far back to challenge the top two as they trail Sheffield by six with sixteen to play.

Leicester still lead the Central League by five games despite suffering a rare defeat against Aston Manor on Wednesday. Cannon Hill had closed to within four, but they in turn lost to St. Margaret's this afternoon and Leicester beat Derby to move five ahead again. Aston and Sherwood share third after both won twice, but they are much too far back to have any title hopes. In the Northern Combination, Middlesbrough's comeback win over Gateshead this afternoon kept them level with Stockton at the top, both teams recording two victories during the week. Sunderland had looked set to make it a three-horse race, but they lost to both Newcastle and South Shields to drop four games behind again. Bath are almost at the winning line in the Western League's English Section despite losing to last placed Avon on Wednesday. Cheltenham were beaten on the same day and remain ten games behind with just thirteen remaining. Cardiff look set to make it a repeat of last year's championship play-off as their defeat to Newport on Wednesday did not matter either, with Rhondda losing twice and falling four games behind.

Glasgow are four games ahead again in the Caledonian League having beaten White Cart and Kirkcaldy, while Moncreiffe Island lost both their games to drop out of second place. They share third with Leith and Tail o' the Bank, five games behind Glasgow, while second place now belongs to The Grange after victories over Arthur's Seat and Burgh of Partick. In the Irish League, everything has changed in the Belfast Section as Clonard beat Sailortown on Wednesday to draw level at the top, before another defeat for Sailortown today against Queen's Island allowed Clonard to go a game clear by beating Laganside. Sailortown have now lost their last four, while Clonard have four successive wins. In the Dublin Section, Drumcondra's lead had already been reduced on Wednesday when they lost to Trinity and Kilmainham beat Rathmines, before Kilmainham won the battle of the top two today to move with in six games. With only fifteen to play, Drumcondra are still in firm control but will want to win the return meeting with Kilmainham this coming Wednesday.

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Old 02-25-2017, 05:14 AM   #1043
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Saturday 24 August
1889

The Metropolitan League season reached the three-quarter mark today with champions Kensington still a game ahead, although they had lost that lead on Wednesday after defeat to Clapham. Kensington recovered to beat Rotherhithe in extra innings today, a result that probably ends the Dockers' unexpected challenge, while Putney slipped a game behind again after losing to Woolwich. Clapham won a big game against Hackney today to stay two games back, leaving Hackney also two behind. In the Suburban League, Wimbledon strengthened their position considerably when they recovered from an early deficit to beat West Ham today, while Harrow crashed to defeat against lowly Bexley Heath. Harrow are now three games behind, but Croydon missed a chance to join them in a tie for second as they were beaten by Forest Gate and slip four back with twelve to play.

The race is really on in the Lancashire League after a dramatic week in which Manchester's recent fine form ended with two defeats to Liverpool. The wins brought Liverpool, who have now taken their last seven games, within one of Manchester but also allowed Rochdale to draw level at the top by beating Burnley twice. There are more vital games in the coming week when Rochdale play Liverpool twice. Despite a big win over struggling Huddersfield on Wednesday, it turned out to be a bad week for Yorkshire League leaders Sheffield as they slipped up against outgoing champions Halifax this afternoon. With York winning both their games, they are back within one of Sheffield at the top of the standings ahead of their crucial meeting on Wednesday. Third placed West of Hull are now only five behind after winning their last eleven, but their wonderful run looks to be just too late to get them into the title battle.

A dramatic eighth inning turnaround from Central League leaders Leicester kept their five game lead at the top of the standings intact today, after they had looked set to lose at home to Birmingham. Instead it meant that Cannon Hill's two victories did not get them any closer to the leaders and games are fast running out. Middlesbrough have a one-game lead at the top of the Northern Combination after Stockton slipped up against third placed Sunderland on Wednesday. Middlesbrough won both their games, including one against Sunderland today which leaves Sunderland now five games behind. In the Western League, Bath could secure first place in the English Section on Wednesday after they beat Swansea today while Cheltenham lost to Cardiff, increasing the gap to ten games. If Bath win on Wednesday and Cheltenham lose, the race will be over before the end of August. In the Welsh Section, Cardiff are also closing in on securing first position after Rhondda lost to Bristol on Wednesday to slip five games behind.

As the teams behind them continue to struggle for consistency, Glasgow have extended their advantage in the Caledonian League to five games after beating Govan and Burgh of Partick this week. It was the turn of The Grange to falter having moved into second place, as they lost twice and dropped back down the standings. Champions Tail o' the Bank are now second after winning both their games this week, but a five-game margin is a lot to catch up at this stage of the season. In the Irish League, both leading contenders in the Belfast Section slipped up against last placed Laganside this week and end up just where they were seven days ago. First Clonard lost to Laganside on Wednesday to allow Sailortown to catch up, only for Sailortown to do likewise today and fall one behind again. In the Dublin Section, Kilmainham had drawn within five of Drumcondra by beating them again on Wednesday, only to lose to Trinity today and fall six behind again with just thirteen to play.

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Old 02-25-2017, 04:55 PM   #1044
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Saturday 31 August
1889

After a Wednesday off in the Metropolitan League Kensington end August with a one game lead at the top, but it could have been better for the champions had they not slipped to defeat at home to Westminster this afternoon. Putney failed to take advantage as they also lost to remain one game behind, their defeat reviving Rotherhithe's hopes of staying in the race. Hackney join Putney in a tie for second after beating Highgate, but Clapham failed to do likewise as they lost to Woolwich. Those teams are tied for fourth, two games back, alongside the City of London Club, as seven teams are still split by only three games with twelve to play. In the Suburban League, two wins for Wimbledon over Dartford were enough to move them four games clear at the top after Harrow could only share their meetings with Tottenham. Croydon also had a mixed week in their games against Enfield and they now trail by five as their hopes of holding on to the title fade.

It was a perfect week for Manchester in the Lancashire League as they beat Burnley twice, while their fellow contenders Rochdale and Liverpool split their two games. Manchester now lead Rochdale by one game again with ten to play, while Liverpool are two games back. Sheffield are closing in on their sixth Yorkshire League title after a vital win over York on Wednesday moved them two games clear, before victory over East of Hull today extended the gap to three when York lost to West of Hull. That was an incredible thirteenth successive win for the Wests, but they are still five games behind Sheffield and catching York for second would appear to be the best they can hope for. It was a rare bad week for Leicester in the Central League as they crashed to Wolverhampton on Wednesday before losing to Cannon Hill this afternoon, but Cannon Hill's loss to Sherwood on Wednesday restricted the damage. Leicester still lead by four with just eleven to play.

With Stockton losing to both The Hartlepools and Newcastle this week, Middlesbrough had a chance to open up a significant margin in the Northern Combination. They beat Wearmouth on Wednesday to move two games ahead, but defeat to The Hartlepools this afternoon prevented the gap from growing to three. With wins over Jesmond and Gateshead, third placed Sunderland closed to within four games of the leaders with twelve remaining. Western League teams did not play today, but in Wednesday's action Bath failed to clinch first place in the English Section when they lost to Cardiff, while second placed Cheltenham beat Rhondda. The gap at the top is still nine games and Bath will have another chance to secure first place this coming Wednesday. The week's results strengthened Cardiff's position in the Welsh Section as they now lead Rhondda by six games with ten to play.

Glasgow are still five games clear in the Caledonian League despite losing to Arthur's Seat on Wednesday, as Tail o' the Bank slipped up against Burgh of Partick this afternoon. Wins over Burgh of Partick and The Grange brought Moncreiffe back into a tie for second place, but with only eleven games left Glasgow's five game advantage looks very secure. Like the Western League, the Irish League had no games today but on Wednesday, Clonard and Sailortown both recorded wins to keep Clonard's lead at the top of the Irish Section at just a single game. In the Dublin Section, Rathmines' victory over Drumcondra allowed Kilmainham to close the gap to five by beating Trinity. Although Drumcondra's lead still looks secure, the two teams meet twice in the coming week and the race would look very different if Kilmainham were to win both.


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Old 02-25-2017, 07:20 PM   #1045
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British Baseball News
Saturday 7 September
1889

Kensington took a large step towards a third successive Metropolitan League title this week with two wins including a vital comeback against Putney this afternoon. With Hackney losing to the City of London Club today, those two teams are now tied for second but Kensington lead the standings by two with ten play. Having lost their last four, Putney are three back alongside Clapham and Woolwich while a shock defeat to last placed Angel has probably ended Rotherhithe's unexpected challenge as they are now four behind. Wimbledon look set to win the Suburban League for the second time, three years on from their first title, after beating Kingston today while Harrow were losing to Hammersmith to fall five games behind with only nine remaining. Croydon's defeat to Ealing means that their title defence is all but over.

Manchester significantly improved their chances of taking the Lancashire League crown after easily beating lowly Oldham this afternoon, while Rochdale lost at home to Irwell and Liverpool slipped up at Blackburn. There are nine games left in Lancashire too and Manchester now lead by two from Rochdale and three from Liverpool. Sheffield's progress towards the Yorkshire League title was stopped a little by their city rivals Sanderson's Weir, who took their meeting this afternoon. With York winning twice this week, the margin at the top is back down to two games. West of Hull's late run is over, as they lost twice this week and are now only one clear of fourth placed champions Halifax, who have won their last eight. In the Central League, Leicester still lead Cannon Hill by four games with now just nine to play after both won twice this week. The two meet on the final day, but at the moment it looks as though that game will be irrelevant.

Stockton's brave challenge in the Northern Combination looks to be over after they lost twice again this week, including a crucial 2-0 defeat to Middlesbrough this afternoon. Stockton have now lost their last four and are four games behind Middlesbrough with ten to play. Having extended their own winning run to four, Sunderland now move into a tie for second place with Stockton. The first issue to be resolved this year came in the Western League, where Bath's victory over Newport on Wednesday, coupled with Cheltenham's defeat to Swansea, ended the race in the English Section. Cheltenham did at least get back up to an even record by beating Newport today. Cardiff could secure first place in the Welsh Section and set up a repeat of last year's championship play-off as soon as this coming Wednesday, after Rhondda's defeat to Bath today allowed them to move seven games clear having won their last six.

After a Wednesday off in Scotland, Glasgow slipped to a surprise defeat at last placed Lanark-Renfrew this afternoon and saw their lead in the Caledonian League reduced to four games. With just ten to play it is still a commanding advantage, but Moncreiffe's big win over The Grange today was their fourth in succession and they look ready to take advantage of any stumble from the leaders. Defeat to Burgh of Partick saw champions Tail o' the Bank fall five behind and surely end their hopes of another title. In the Irish League, Clonard look set to take first place in the Belfast Section for the first time after beating Laganside twice this week while Sailortown were losing two to Queen's Island. The champions are much weakened by injury and have now lost seven of their last ten, needing desperately to gain ground in their two meetings with Clonard next week. Drumcondra seem sure to take the Dublin Section this year after sharing two games with Kilmainham this week. They remain five clear with ten to play and although the teams meet twice more in the penultimate week of the season, the gap could be too large for those games to matter.

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Old 02-26-2017, 08:23 AM   #1046
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Saturday 14 September
1889

Kensington are still two games ahead at the top of the Metropolitan League after a good week for all the leading teams. The only one of the top six clubs not to win both their games were Hackney, who lost to Peckham this afternoon and now fall three behind the leaders, with their title hopes probably resting on whether they can beat Kensington on Wednesday. That leaves the City of London Club leading the chase, with Hackney joining Clapham, Putney and Woolwich in a four-way tie for third. Rotherhithe are now out of the running after losing both of their games. Wimbledon could clinch a second Suburban League crown as soon as Wednesday after beating Kingston and Ealing this week while Harrow were beaten by Hammersmith on Wednesday. Wimbledon lead by six with only seven to play and will be champions if they beat Ealing in their next game and Harrow lose to Kingston. Champions Croydon are still one behind Harrow in third after defeat to Hammersmith today.

There was no change in the Lancashire League this week as the three contenders all recorded two wins. That keeps Manchester two games clear of Rochdale and three ahead of Liverpool, with time starting to run out for Liverpool in particular. Of consolation to Rochdale is the fact that they still have to play Manchester twice, giving them more chance to close the gap. In the Yorkshire League, Sheffield looked to be clear two weeks ago when they led York by three games, but defeats to Sanderson's Weir and Bradford this week extended their losing run to three and they have now been caught. York beat Bradford and Halifax to draw level and have now won their last four. Central League teams only had one game this week and leaders Leicester held on to their four game advantage when they came from behind to beat neighbours St. Margaret's. Cannon Hill beat Birmingham 1-0 but are running out of time to catch up.

Middlesbrough have been pushed harder this year than they were last time but they look good to retain the Northern Combination title after beating Stockton again on Wednesday to move six games clear. Stockton ended their losing run by beating Gateshead today, but they have faltered at a crucial time and with Middlesbrough on a fine run of form, the race looks over. Sunderland fell a game behind Stockton again in third after losing twice this week. In the Western League, Bath and Cardiff will contest the championship play-off for the second time in as many years after Cardiff beat Cheltenham today to clinch first place in the Welsh Section. They didn't need the win as Rhondda were beaten by Avon, leaving Cardiff now eight games ahead. Two wins for Bath mean that they are now eleven better than anyone else in the English Section.

Glasgow's defeat to The Grange on Wednesday, combined with a win for Moncreiffe Island over Tail o' the Bank, reduced the gap at the top of the Caledonian League to three games ahead of the meeting of the top two today. Moncreiffe could have moved within two had they won, but Glasgow took it 4-1 and their lead is now four games again with just eight remaining. Champions Tail o' the Bank share third with The Grange, but they are both five games back and surely out of the running. In Ireland, Clonard moved four games clear in the Belfast Section after beating Sailortown on Wednesday but lost today's return game to see their lead cut back to three. Queen's Island beat Laganside twice and they now share second with Sailortown. In the Dublin Section, Drumcondra saw their lead reduced to four games when they lost to Trinity on Wednesday. With Kilmainham winning twice, Drumcondra needed an extra innings win today to maintain that lead.

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Old 02-26-2017, 01:56 PM   #1047
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Saturday 21 September
1889

Metropolitan League champions Kensington are still two games ahead with just six to play after beating Hackney and Peckham this week to extend their winning run to six. They can't shake off the City of London Club though, as the City Club have taken their last nine to keep their hopes alive with the two still having to meet before the season ends. Putney also won twice to stay three behind but their chances are fading, while Hackney's hopes are gone with that defeat to Kensington. Clapham also lost on Wednesday while Woolwich dropped both their games, leaving just the top three to contest the title. The Suburban League race is over after Wimbledon recorded wins over Ealing and Croydon to secure the championship. They have won their last eight games and took the title this afternoon, despite Harrow's best efforts to extend the battle. Croydon's defeat to Wimbledon means that Harrow have a stronger hold on second place.

The race is all but over in the Lancashire League as well, after Manchester recorded narrow victories over Bolton and Moss Grove to move further clear. They have now won their last seven, while Rochdale were beaten twice this week and fall four games behind with five to play. Liverpool are also four behind after a mixed week and although there are no games on Wednesday, Manchester could secure the crown next Saturday. York and Sheffield are still tied at the top of the Yorkshire League after both won on Wednesday and lost today, but the race could have taken a big twist with an injury to Sheffield's star pitcher Ernest Davis. He had to leave Wednesday's game early and the club face an anxious wait to see whether he will be fit for the final six games. Without Davis, Sheffield lost to Huddersfield this afternoon but were grateful to neighbours Sanderson's Weir for beating York.

An extra-innings defeat to Sherwood today brought Leicester's lead in the Central League down to three games, with Cannon Hill winning twice and having now taken their last six. The reigning champions are still in the hunt but need to make up two more games between now and their final day meeting with Leicester. Middlesbrough will have a chance to complete a successful defence of the Northern Combination on Wednesday, despite their defeat to Darlington today. They remain five games ahead of Stockton, who lost to Sunderland, with only six to play and the battle will be over if Middlesbrough win and Stockton lose on Wednesday. Both races are of course over in the Western League, where Bath lost both their games this week while Cardiff won both of theirs. That leaves Bath just one game better off than Cardiff and who finishes with the best record could really make a difference should the championship series go to a deciding game.

Wins over Tail o' the Bank and Dundee helped Glasgow to close in on the Caledonian League title, as they remain four games ahead of Moncreiffe Island with six to play. Moncreiffe also won both their games but they seem to be much too far behind to catch up. In the Irish League, Clonard seem set to take first place in the Belfast Section for the first time after they shared two games with Queen's Island. With Sailortown also sharing their games against Laganside, Clonard maintained a three game advantage with six remaining. Drumcondra can secure first place in the Dublin Section as soon as Wednesday despite losing to Rathmines today, as Kilmainham were beaten twice by Trinity. Drumcondra are now five ahead and in position to advance to the championship play-off for the second time in three years.

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Old 02-26-2017, 03:13 PM   #1048
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British Baseball News - Midweek Update
Thursday 26 September
1889

No issues were decided in the midweek round of games, but several titles could be clinched on Saturday after teams moved to the brink of success. Middlesbrough were about to secure the Northern Combination crown yesterday only for Stockton to rally in the ninth inning and beat Wearmouth, extending the race a few more days. Middlesbrough will be champions if they win on Saturday though, just as Drumcondra will secure first place in the Irish League's Dublin Section if they win. They had to wait until today for Kilmainham to play their game with Rathmines, which was postponed yesterday, but Kilmainham took it to keep Drumcondra waiting a little longer.

Elsewhere, defeats for Glasgow and Moncreiffe today mean that Glasgow will claim the Caledonian League crown on Saturday if they win and Moncreiffe lose. The scenario is the same for Leicester in the Central League after they won yesterday and Cannon Hill lost, meaning a repeat of those results on Saturday will end the race. With Kensington and the City of London Club both winning the gap in the Metropolitan League is still two games, while in the Yorkshire League Sheffield were rocked by the news that pitcher Ernest Davis will miss the rest of the regular season with injury. They rallied to beat West of Hull today though and keep themselves level with York with five games to play and the two set to meet at York on Saturday.

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Old 02-26-2017, 04:03 PM   #1049
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Saturday 28 September
1889

The last games in September saw another league title secured this afternoon, as Middlesbrough made sure of their second Northern Combination crown in as many seasons. They have had to work much harder this year than last and did not secure it in the way they would have liked, losing at home to Wearmouth today but still clinching the title because Stockton lost to The Hartlepools. Elsewhere, there was no celebration today for Manchester, Leicester or Glasgow even though all three won their games. Wins for Liverpool and Rochdale took the Lancashire League race into October, while Cannon Hill did likewise in the Central League as did Moncreiffe Island in the Caledonian League. Nevertheless, all three leaders are now within just one win of their respective titles with the most exciting week set to come in the Lancashire League. Manchester play Rochdale twice and should they lose both, Rochdale would take the race into the final week of the season. In other Lancashire League news, Blackburn's Billy Hogarth, deputising for suspended starter Francis Cole, produced only the third no-hit performance ever seen in Lancashire as his team beat Burnley 2-0 this afternoon.

The Metropolitan League race took a twist this afternoon as Kensington slumped to a 4-1 defeat at Woolwich, allowing the City of London Club to move to within a single game when they beat Highgate to record an eleventh successive win. Third placed Putney have won their last six and are now only two behind, but the crucial game seems certain to be the meeting of Kensington and the City Club next Saturday. In the Yorkshire League, Sheffield brushed off the absence of injured pitcher Ernest Davis by edging to a 7-6 win over York, moving them one game ahead with four to play. The Irish League's Dublin Section was decided today, with Drumcondra beating Trinity to render their two games against Kilmainham next week irrelevant. The battle is very much back on in the Belfast Section though, as reigning champions Sailortown beat Clonard twice to cut the gap at the top back to a single game with four remaining.

Elsewhere, newly crowned Suburban League champions Wimbledon have now won their last nine after beating the team whose crown they have taken away, Croydon. That result, coupled with Harrow's win over Ealing, means that Harrow are now almost certain to finish in second place, their highest position in seven years. In the Western League, two wins for Bath alongside Cardiff's defeat to Swansea on Wednesday means that Bath are now certain of having home advantage for the first game of the championship play-off, as well as the deciding third game if necessary.


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Old 02-26-2017, 05:50 PM   #1050
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British Baseball News - Midweek Update
Thursday 3 October
1889

The midweek programme saw three league titles settled and another one start to look much more clear cut, but one race got closer again as an exciting finish looms. Clinching a title were Manchester in the Lancashire League, with right fielder George Howard's game winning hit in the ninth inning taking them past Rochdale 6-5. Manchester depose Rochdale as champions and take their fifth crown, but their first in five years. Leicester looked set to have to wait a little longer to secure their fourth Central League title when they trailed Wolverhampton and Cannon Hill led Sherwood late on. However, both games turned around and the win was enough for Leicester to reclaim the crown they lost to Cannon Hill a year ago. The third celebration was for Glasgow, who beat Kirkcaldy 9-4 not even realising that they were already champions of the Caledonian League because Moncreiffe Island had lost to Govan. Glasgow win the title for the second time but the first under their current name, having taken the crown as Dundashill three years ago.

Elsewhere, Kensington closed in on a third successive Metropolitan League title when they beat Highgate and the City of London Club surrendered a 5-2 ninth inning lead to lose at home to Rotherhithe. Kensington now lead by two with three to play and will be champions again if they beat the City Club on Saturday. The tightest race is in the Yorkshire League, where Sheffield lost to Halifax and York took full advantage to draw level again by beating Leeds. The other race which is still alive is in the Irish League's Belfast Section, where Clonard edged closer by beating Laganside yesterday. Rain delayed the game between Queen's Island and Sailortown until today, when a win for Queen's Island handed Clonard a two game lead with three remaining. The day's other big headline was a wonderful no-hit performance from Cardiff's Elias Rowntree in the Western League game at Rhondda. Rowntree allowed only one baserunner, having hit a batter in the sixth inning, to out perform Rhondda's Andrew Atholl who allowed only two hits himself. The combined two hits for both teams in the game was the lowest total ever recorded in any league.

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Old 02-26-2017, 06:58 PM   #1051
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Saturday 5 October
1889

For the third successive year, Kensington Victoria are the Metropolitan League champions after a dramatic 4-3 extra innings win over the City of London Club this afternoon. It is the first time Kensington have won the crown without needing a tiebreaker game, as they now sit three games ahead with just two to play. Wins for Hackney and Putney move them level with the City Club in a three-way tie for second, but even the runners-up spot will be of little consolation. That result means that of the English leagues, only the Yorkshire League race goes into the final week of the season and it is Sheffield who have the upper hand, as they won a dramatic game against Woodhouse Lane today while York crashed at lowly Huddersfield. Sheffield, coping well without injured pitcher Ernest Davis, will be champions if they win their final two games but if they don't, York are still right there to take advantage.

The other battle which is still alive is in the Irish League's Belfast Section, where Clonard's 4-3 loss at Laganside this afternoon opened the door for either Queen's Island or Sailortown to move within one game by winning their meeting. In the end it was Queen's Island who took it, also by a score of 4-3, setting up two exciting games between themselves and Clonard in the final week. Although reigning champions Sailortown are only two back with two to play, they are eliminated from the race because the top two are playing each other. Queen's Island must win both games to take first place, one win will be enough for Clonard, with no possibility of a tie-breaker. Whoever comes through will face Drumcondra in the championship play-off. We are already at the play-off stage in the Western League, where the regular season ended today with both Bath and Cardiff ending up fully ten games ahead in their respective sections. They now meet for the right to be the Western League's first representatives in the Alliance play-offs, with the first game at Bath on Tuesday and the second at Cardiff on Thursday.

In the leagues already decided, Manchester added further to their margin in the Lancashire League by beating Rochdale again today, while Liverpool lost to St. Helens, giving the new champions a six game lead. Wimbledon are six clear in the Suburban League too after sharing their games with second placed Harrow, while in the Central League Leicester are five ahead following wins for both themselves and Cannon Hill today. The margin is also five in the Northern Combination, where Middlesbrough and Stockton both rebounded from midweek losses to win today, while two wins in the week for Sunderland take them back into a tie for second place with Stockton. Finally, in the Caledonian League Glasgow are now six ahead after they beat Govan today while second placed Moncreiffe lost to Arthur's Seat. Glasgow look set to arrange exhibition games after the regular season ends, as they wait for the Irish League championship play-off to determine their opponents in the Celtic Challenge.
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Old 02-26-2017, 08:31 PM   #1052
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British Baseball News - Midweek Update
Thursday 10 October
1889

Two issues remain to be decided on what should be the final day of the regular season on Saturday. With York losing heavily at home to West of Hull, Sheffield could have secured the Yorkshire League title if they had beaten East of Hull yesterday, but they too lost heavily and remain just one game ahead of York. Sheffield will take the title on Saturday if they beat city rivals Sanderson's Weir, but should their neighbours win the game, York will be able to force a tiebreaker by beating Bradford. In the Irish League, Clonard knew that victory over Queen's Island yesterday would secure first place in the Belfast Section, but they crashed 3-0 and the two teams are now tied ahead of their return meeting on Saturday. The winners of that game will take first place and go on to meet Drumcondra in the championship play-off.

There will be no deciding game in the Western League championship series on Saturday, as the title is already resolved. For the second time in the league's two seasons, Bath met Cardiff in the play-off and once again the English Section winners came out on top. Bath comfortably took the first game at home on Tuesday, winning it 6-1, but today's game in Cardiff was much closer. Twice Bath let slip one run leads, but when catcher Rupert Heath hit an inside-the-park home run in the ninth inning to put them ahead 3-2, Cardiff could not respond. Bath become only the second team to win a league in its first two seasons, emulating Leith in the Caledonian League, but unlike last year they now have the chance to go on to the Alliance play-offs as the first representatives of the Western League.
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Old 02-27-2017, 07:01 AM   #1053
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Saturday 12 October
1889

For the fourth successive year, the Alliance play-offs will have to wait a few more days as a tiebreaker game is needed in one of the leagues. This year it is the turn of Yorkshire, where Sheffield lost at city rivals Sanderson's Weir this afternoon and York took full advantage, beating Bradford to draw level at the top. Having had the better of the head-to-head meetings, Sheffield will host the extra game and in another twist, it appears that their star pitcher Ernest Davis may be fit to play in the game. While they initially appeared to be coping will with his absence, Sheffield have really missed him in their last couple of games and his return would be a real boost to them. With a win over East of Hull, West of Hull finish just two games back in third place, their wonderful run of twenty-one wins from their last twenty-five games coming just too late.

Elsewhere on the final day, there was extra innings drama in Belfast where Clonard and Queen's Island contested first place in the Irish League's Belfast Section. Queen's Island came back from a 2-0 deficit to lead 3-2, but Clonard tied the game and it went all the way to the eleventh, where it was Clonard who got the vital run home. They take first place for the first time, meaning that the Belfast Section has had three different winners in its three seasons and leaving Queen's Island as the only team not to have finished first yet. Sailortown's win over Laganside means that they share second with Queen's Island, just one game separating three of the four teams after a wonderful race. Clonard now meet Drumcondra in the championship play-off, with the first game in Dublin on Tuesday and the second in Belfast on Thursday. Clonard lost all six regular season meetings between the teams so need to improve significantly if they are to have a chance of the title.

All the other leagues brought their regular seasons to an end today with Kensington beating Rotherhithe to end with a three game margin of victory in the Metropolitan League. Victory over Clapham earned second place outright for Hackney, as the City of London Club and Putney both lost. Manchester's final gap in the Lancashire League was five games after they shared their last two games with Irwell, while Rochdale won twice in the final week. Last day wins for Burnley and Moss Grove earned both an even record for the year. Wimbledon end with the biggest lead in any of the English leagues, winning the Suburban League by seven clear games after two wins over Hammersmith this week, while Croydon beat Harrow twice to leave those two teams sharing second place.

Leicester win the Central League by six games after beating Cannon Hill on the final day, with their winning percentage earning them the top seeding in the Alliance play-offs and the only bye through to the semi-finals. As with previous teams earning byes, they will play exhibition games while the quarter-finals are in progress. Leicester have looked to London for their opposition, inviting Putney and Harrow to the Midlands for exhibitions. With Middlesbrough losing their final game of the season against Stockton, their winning margin in the Northern Combination is four games, comfortable enough but much reduced from the massive thirteen game gap they enjoyed last year.

Up in Scotland, Glasgow lost their last two games in the Caledonian League to end up four clear of Moncreiffe Island, who won their last two. Glasgow will also play exhibitions while they wait to see which Irish League team they will meet in the Celtic Challenge. They hoped to play both Sailortown and Queen's Island, but after the disappointment of losing out to Clonard today Queen's Island have turned down the invitation. Glasgow will instead meet Sunderland, a historic first ever game between Scottish and English clubs. Whether such a game leads to a change in attitudes regarding the Caledonian League joining the Alliance remains to be seen.

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Old 02-27-2017, 09:12 AM   #1054
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Thursday 17 October
1889

The identities of all nine league champions are now known after the Yorkshire League tiebreaker game and the Irish League championship series took place this week. In Yorkshire, York travelled to Sheffield yesterday for what turned out to be a hugely dramatic game in which the lead changes hands no fewer than four times. Sheffield had welcomed back pitcher Ernest Davis from injury and although they fell behind in the first inning, they quickly turned it around and all looked well when they led 2-1 after two innings. Davis struggled in the third though, giving up five runs to put York 6-2 ahead and seemingly on their way to the title. Sheffield fought back, cutting the deficit to 6-4 after five and then in the sixth, scoring three more to move back ahead. Now it was York who needed to rally and so they did, responding with four in the seventh to lead 10-7. Sheffield tried to fight back again, but York added two more in the ninth and took the game 12-7, winning the championship for the first time.

Over in Ireland, Drumcondra were strong favourites to take the Irish League title for the second time in the competition's three years, but in the first game at home they crashed to a 6-2 defeat at the hands of Clonard. Drumcondra had scored first in the fifth inning, but Clonard immediately turned it around in the sixth to lead 2-1. Although the home team tied it up, Clonard scored twice in both the seventh and eighth innings to move 6-2 ahead and Drumcondra had no reply. That meant that they had to win the second game at Clonard and the game hinged on the second inning. Drumcondra had runners at every base with nobody out but could not score, then in Clonard's half of the inning they faced the same situation and got four runs in on an inside-the-park home run. Two more runs scored in the third to make it 6-0 and Drumcondra never got closer than three runs behind, eventually losing it 9-3 and dropping the series by two games to none.

We now move into the inter-league play-offs, with Clonard facing Glasgow in the Celtic Challenge which starts on Tuesday. Glasgow are favoured to win, possibly by three games to one, but Clonard have already proved many people wrong by taking the Irish League title. York on the other hand move on to the Alliance play-offs, which begin on Saturday.

FINAL REGULAR SEASON STANDINGS - 1889
(NB: x- indicates a team who won the championship play-off)


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Old 02-27-2017, 09:48 AM   #1055
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Friday 18 October
1889

Play-Off Preview

For the first time, seven teams take part in the Alliance play-offs this year as the Western League joins the competition. That means that there is only one team receiving a bye through to the semi-final round, while the quarter-final round sees three best-of-three series. This year's contenders and their seeding positions are:

1) Leicester South Fields (Central League, 44-10, .815)
After a three-year reign, Leicester lost their Central League crown to Cannon Hill last year but this time around they led from start to finish to take it back. In their three previous play-off campaigns, they are yet to win a series having lost quarter-finals to Blackburn, Putney and Kensington. With a bye this year, Leicester have already guaranteed a first semi-final appearance and they will be looking to become the first Central League team to become national champions. Before that, they face exhibition games against Putney and Harrow while waiting for the quarter-finals to be played.

2) Manchester Belle Vue (Lancashire League, 42-12, .778)
Five years on from their last title, Manchester claimed the Lancashire League crown for the fifth time after recovering from defeats in their first three games to outlast Rochdale and Liverpool. Under their original name of Belle Vue Gardens, they were the first team to win a play-off when they took the first 'Pennine Cup' back in 1877, but their three appearances as Manchester have not been so successful. They are yet to win a play-off series under that name, losing a quarter-final to Forest Gate and two semi-finals to Putney between 1882 and 1884.

3) Wimbledon Wood (Suburban League, 41-13, .759)
Wimbledon return to the play-offs for a second time having won the Suburban League title comfortably. They looked set for a tight battle with a Harrow team who started the season superbly, but Harrow faded and Wimbledon took the title for the second time, three years after their first success. Back in 1886, they followed up that success by taking the Alliance crown and as that is their only previous play-off campaign, they have a perfect record in play-off series. .

4) Middlesbrough Longlands (Northern Combination, 40-16, .704)
Reigning Alliance champions Middlesbrough return for a second play-off appearance in only their second season of professional play, having successfully defended the Northern Combination title. They were made to work much harder this year, battling near neighbours Stockton for much of the year until Stockton faded through September. Middlesbrough have never lost a play-off game, let alone a series, having won all five of the contests against Kensington and Rochdale last season.

5) Kensington Victoria (Metropolitan League, 37-15, .712)
Kensington appear for the third successive season after moving away in the closing weeks of the campaign to finish three games clear at the top of the Metropolitan League, the first time they have not needed a tiebreaker game to claim the crown. They won the Alliance title on their first play-off appearance two seasons ago, but last year were stopped in the semi-finals by a Middlesbrough team who took both games by single run margins.

6) Bath Spa (Western League, 38-16, .704)
Bath are the Western League's first representatives in the Alliance play-offs, but they have won their league for the second successive year after also taking the inaugural title last season. This year some people felt that they might struggle amid uncertainty about who their first choice pitcher might be, but they easily won the English Section by ten clear games before beating Cardiff in the championship play-off for the second time. Obviously Bath have no previous form in the Alliance play-offs, but they do have a perfect record in three-games series in their own league.

7) York Phoenix Albion (Yorkshire League, 40-17, .702)
York are the second team making their debut appearance in the Alliance play-offs, but the only team in England who have won their league for the first time this year. They needed a tiebreaker game to overcome Sheffield, to the surprise of many people who expected them to ease clear when Sheffield pitcher Ernest Davis was injured. Their failure to finish the season more convincingly has led to them being seen as outsiders in the play-offs, but on their day York have an extremely dangerous batting line-up and should not be ruled out.

The match-ups for the quarter final series this year will be:
(2) Manchester Belle Vue v (7) York Phoenix Albion
(3) Wimbledon Wood v (6) Bath Spa
(4) Middlesbrough Longlands v (5) Kensington Victoria

All three series start tomorrow at the ground of the higher seeded team, with the lower seed at home for game two on Monday. Any deciding games would be next Thursday, back at the higher seeded team. The semi-finals begin next Saturday, with Leicester due to face the lowest seeded of the three quarter-final winners, which could be any team other than Manchester or Wimbledon.

As for who might come through the quarter-finals, Manchester and York are seen as being very evenly matched in theory, but with Manchester favoured given their home advantage across the series. Wimbledon are strong favourites to beat Bath, while in the other series many people feel that Kensington will have revenge for last year's semi-final defeat and end Middlesbrough's reign as national champions.
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Old 02-27-2017, 01:17 PM   #1056
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Thursday 24 October
1889

Seven contenders are now reduced to four in the Alliance play-offs after the completion of the quarter-final round.

Reigning champions Middlesbrough took on Kensington, winners two years ago, in a repeat of last season's semi-final in which both games were decided by one-run margins, with another close battle expected this year. So it proved in game one, with both teams scoring in the first inning before a tense battle developed. In the third inning, a two-out single from Kensington first baseman Bernard Buck gave his team a 2-1 lead and star pitcher Algernon Shooter was in no mood to relinquish the advantage, going on to earn Kensington a one game lead. In the second game, second choice pitchers Gregory Rabbs of Middlesbrough and Gilbert Murphy of Kensington took to the field, both looking to repeat past strong play-off performances. Sadly for Middlesbrough, Rabbs could not find his best pitches and Kensington scored regularly through the early innings. Murphy on the other hand was strong, allowing just one run and five hits in eight innings of work, leading Kensington to a dominant 11-1 win and ending Middlesbrough's reign as national champions.

The series between Wimbledon and Bath turned out to be extremely well fought, with the first game very similar to the opener between Kensington and Middlesbrough. Just as in that game, both teams scored in the opening inning before the pitchers dominated. It was still 1-1 in the fifth, when with two out, Wimbledon right fielder Peter Wood drove home a run to put his team ahead 2-1. Pitcher Montgomery Allen did the rest of the job, allowing Bath only five hits all day and earning a one game lead. Bath had to win the second game at home and took a third inning lead against Wimbledon's second choice pitcher Stan Dardis, but their own second choice Alf Chatterton stumbled in the fifth, allowing Wimbledon to draw level. By the end of the regulation nine innings it was 2-2 and the game went all the way to the twelfth, where with two out and a runner at third, Wimbledon centre fielder Brian Linnell gave his team a 3-2 lead. Bath tried to respond and in their half of the twelfth got runners on every base with only one out, but Wimbledon held on to win the series in two games.

Game one between Manchester and York also looked set to be close for much of the game, with Manchester opening up a 2-1 lead after three innings and keeping that score until the eighth. It looked as though all three opening games might end 2-1, but in the eighth Manchester added on four runs to take it more comfortably, 6-1. York's hopes therefore rested on second choice pitcher Sidney Davey producing a good performance in game two and he did not let them down. Davey allowed just one run on two hits in the first eight innings, with his team mates scoring single runs in four different innings to take control. Manchester second baseman Benjamin Gulliver gave them hope with a home run to start the ninth, after which Davey left the game, but substitute John Harper finished the game off to level the series.

In game three, first choice pitchers Mark Wood of Manchester and Conal Mulroy of York were back in action. Both were strong, with the game scoreless after six innings, but in the seventh Manchester left fielder George Dallyn thought he might have won the series with a two-out double which scored a runner from first and gave his team the lead. York had to respond and with a runner at first and one out, Manchester decided to take Wood out of the game and bring in replacement William Lee. He gave up a single to the first man he faced and then made a crucial error, allowing York catcher Patrick McEnroe to hit the home run which gave the visitors a 3-1 lead. Manchester did not get a runner on base after that and find themselves eliminated in their first series for their fourth successive play-off appearance. As the lowest seeds, York go on to play top seeded Leicester, who lost both of their exhibition games 2-0 to Putney and Hackney. That leaves Kensington to face Wimbledon in a battle of the London area in the other semi-final.



In other news this week, Glasgow have taken full control of the Celtic Challenge by winning both of their home games against Clonard. In game one they fell behind in the fifth inning when Clonard scored three times, but immediately hit back with six of their own to take control. Two more runs in the seventh gave Glasgow an 8-3 win. Clonard were desperate to win game two to head back to Belfast level and it looked good when they scored six runs in the second inning. Although Glasgow got one back in the fourth, it was still 6-1 heading into the sixth when Glasgow found five runs to tie the score. Clonard were stunned and when they gave up two more in the eighth, they were in real trouble. A lead-off single in the ninth revived a little hope, but Glasgow got through the inning and will take the series if they win Saturday's game in Belfast.
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Old 10-12-2017, 06:19 PM   #1057
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