East County Sports

Numbers lie, Stars qualify for Wichita

2018 SAN DIEGO STARS BASEBALL


East County Sports staff report
OCEANSIDE (7-23-2018) — When it comes to statistical analytics in baseball, no matter how deeply one might dig into the numbers, the results often remain the same.
 
For example, the San Diego Stars opened their summer campaign with 18 consecutive victories, then quickly lost two straight contests.
 
The same thing then came true in Western Baseball Association play. The Stars again won 18 straight league outings entering Sunday’s (July 22) regular-season doubleheader finale, then were dispatched from the ranks of the unbeaten.
 
The San Diego Waves, titlist of the WBA American Division, overcame a pair of early deficits to sweep the National Division champion Stars, 12-4 and 14-4, to finish with the best record among all 18 WBA ballclubs. The Waves finished with an 19-1 mark to nip the Stars (18-2, 25-5 overall) at the finish line.
 
The Stars held the lead after the first inning in both contests.
 
Kyle Pineda smacked a lead homer in the opener, as the Stars jumped to a short-lived 3-0 advantage. In Game Two, Dallas Seidel blasted the first of his two home runs for a 2-0, but by the time he went deep again for his club-leading 10th homer in 24 appearances this summer — capping a 3-for-4 outing and 8-for-14 (.571) over his final four contests — the Waves already owned a run-rule lead in the seventh.
 
The numbers may not lie, but then again, the analytics turned out to be completely moot.
 
Although the Waves garnered an automatic No. 1 WBA berth to the National Baseball Congress World Series, and the San Diego Reign also gained an entry as the runner-up in the NBC Western Regional, the Stars were granted good news, too.
 
Because a league champion from elsewhere in the country denied accepting a berth to the 84th annual NBC event in Wichita, Kan., tournament officials granted a wild card invitation to owner/manager Mickey Deutschman’s squad, good for a more prestigious Week 2 slot in the bracket.
 
The NBCWS switched to a 30-team, two-tier format a few seasons ago. A total of 16 “lower echelon” teams play a double-elimination event in Week One, with the top two ballclubs joining 14 others for the opportunity to capture the national championship.
 
The Reign, which qualified despite a losing record, will play in Week 1, slated from July 27 to August 2. The main draw is slated for August 3-11, all at historic Lawrence–Dumont Stadium in south-central Kansas.

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