Officially Leksand won the 2007 Swedish Junior Baseball Championship, 1-0.
Unofficially the final result seems highly flawed, and the finals game should either be completed or replayed.
The sole run was recorded when a Leksand runner on third came home on a passed ball. Apparently just about everyone except the umpire was pretty sure the runner was dead at the plate. A few innings later the umpire called the game in the 6th inning because of rain.
Earlier Sunday Eskilstuna edged out Sundbyberg 6-7 to take third place.
Last year Stockholm was removed from the Junior standings for reasons that were never publicly explained. One day all the stats for Stockholm were just removed.
The secret excuse seemed to be because the team hadn’t played enough games, but that was because the Baseball Federation scheduled cadet tournaments that made it impossible for Stockholm to field a team on key weekends.
Unfortunately there is apparently something deeply wrong with the way those in power in Sweden treat Juniors, at least those who play for Stockholm.
Stockholm easily defeated Eskilstuna 7-1 in the opening semi-final of the Swedish Junior Baseball Championships Sunday.
Oscar Carlstedt struck out the side in each of the first three innings.
In the second semi-final Leksand beat Sundbyberg. Sundbyberg and Eskilstuna are playing for third place, with the final between Stockholm and Leksand.
The series is being played at Stockholm’s home field in Skarpnäck.
The four top teams in the Swedish Junior League will be fighting it out in next weekend’s play-offs and finals, here in Stockholm. The schedule:
09:30 Semi 1 Stockholm-Eskilstuna
12:00 Semi 2 Leksand-Sundbyberg
14:30 The two losing teams play for third place
No Swedish players have been selected for this year’s MLB European Academy in Italy.
None of the 21 players aged between 15 and 18 who took part in the Swedish try-outs were considered good enough to take part in the European Academy. There’s a really simple explanation. The try-outs are biased in favor of southern Europeans.
The MLB representatives showed up here in the middle of April, just after the snow melted. To add insult to injury they held the try-outs way up north in Leksand, instead of down south where the fields had at least been snow-free for a few weeks.
Worse than that, in mid-April the Swedish players have only been training outside for few days. Hardly anyone has actually played a baseball game by then. No matter how much you train indoors during the winter, nothing replaces actually practicing on a real baseball diamond.
Why do they start up here, and hold the try-outs farther south later in the spring? By the time the MLB scouts show up down there, those kids have been outside for weeks, in some cases, like Italy, they have probably been playing outdoors all winter.
If there is an American counterpart to the MLB European Academy, do they hold their first try-outs every spring in Alaska, and end up in Florida and Arizona? Because that is the equivalent of what they do here in Europe.
For some reason this year’s first Swedish junior (16 to 18 year old) games were played this past weekend when the country’s best juniors were away playing in the Nordic Championships.
On Sunday Stockholm, which sent five players to the national team, played Eskilstuna, which apparently had no players in the Nordic tournament. Stockholm sent just 9 players to the away games, of which one was a Cadett (under 16).
Home team Eskilstuna took both games, 16-6 and 9-8. Both games were only five innings, so neither would seem to count, if there was a junior league this year, which apparently there is not.
The Nordic Baseball Championships are underway in the Swedish city of Karlskoga.
The adult national teams of Finland and Norway face the Swedish Junior National Team, as the Swedish adult national team would dominate. Last year the junior Swedes won the tournament.
Date Time Home Away
May 18 17:00 Sweden J 7 Finland 16
May 19 10:00 Norway 16 Sweden J 8
13:30 Finland 21 Norway 2
17:00 Finland 10 Sweden J 5
May 20 11:00 Norway 7 Finland 13
14:00 Sweden J 8 Norway 4
Skarpnäck lighting installation, Photo: Thomas Claesson
Stockholm opens its 2007 season Saturday with a doubleheader against visiting Karlskoga. But the new lighting at the Skarpnäck field is still not quite in place.
According to a post on the Stockholm website, the lights will be ready by August 1, while it will be another three weeks before the fences and some other areas are finished. However. the piles of dirt around the warning track should be cleared away by the weekend.
The batting cage will be restored, but will be shortened for the time being, as will the bullpens.