Will this finally be the year for the Double-A Bowie Baysox?
The Baysox have been close to a playoff berth in recent seasons only to fall just short. Like last year, for instance.
The Baysox were in first place as late as Aug. 12 and were in position for a playoff berth until the final series when they were passed by Richmond after losing eight of their final 12 games. On the final day of the season, Richmond hit a home run in the top of the eighth inning to take a 2-1 lead over Altoona before the tarp was pulled on the field. Typically, because the eighth inning was incomplete the game reverts back to the seventh inning, but in this instance, Major League Baseball Rule 4.12(b)(4)(i) applied and awarded Richmond the victory. If not for the obscure rule granting Richmond the victory, the Baysox would have leapfrogged the Flying Squirrels and made the playoffs.
In recent years, the Baysox have put playoff tickets on sale in early August only to see the team fall just short. This year, they decided to take a different approach by not putting those tickets on sale.
"The month of August has not been kind to the Baysox over the past several years, so we are trying a different strategy this year," said general manager Brian Shallcross. "We want that championship and we are willing to succumb to superstitious tactics to reverse the fortunes that have followed us during this 20-year championship void."
This year, the Baysox are taking care of matters on the field. Sunday's loss to Trenton left them with a record of 68-59 and snapped a six-game win streak. Bowie holds a four-game lead on Richmond for second place and a playoff spot with 15 games to play. The clubs begin a series in Richmond tonight.
On June 6, the Baysox were 23-34, but they are 45-25 since then. Bowie went 19-8 in June and is 13-6 in August. The Baysox begin an eight-game homestand, their final homestand of the regular season, Thursday.
Dylan Bundy is set to make his second Double-A start tonight. On Tuesday against Erie, he gave up two earned runs and five hits over 5 1/3 innings. Click here to see what he had to say after that outing.
The Eastern League regular season is set to end on Labor Day, Sept. 3. This year, the Baysox expect to be laboring on past that day with playoff baseball for the first time since 2008. Even if you can't yet get any tickets for those games.
Pettit honored: Baysox pitcher Jake Pettit has been named Eastern League Pitcher of the Week for the week ending Sunday. Pettit is the first Baysox pitcher to win the award since Zach Clark won it for the week ending June 17, 2012.
Pettit went 1-0 on the week with a 1.17 ERA and five strikeouts over 7 2/3 innings. The left-hander pitched 7 1/3 no-hit innings against the Trenton Thunder on Saturday before surrendering a home run on the way to the win. On the season, Pettit is 9-3 with a 4.10 ERA in 22 games, 19 starts.