The first round of the PGCBL Playoffs saw all three games comes down to the wire, as the Amsterdam Mohawks, the Watertown Rapids, and the Geneva Red Wings advanced to the PGCBL Semifinals. The PGCBL is proud to recognize a player from each game as the Most Outstanding Player of their first round matchup.
East Division First Round Most Outstanding Player: Teddy Sabato, Amsterdam (Manhattan)
In a game where 17 runs crossed the plate, the performance of the Amsterdam bullpen saved the day for the Mohawks. Sabato came into the game in the top of the eighth inning, with the Mohawks tied 8-8 with the Albany Dutchmen. The Manhattan Jasper retired all six Dutchmen he faced, and picked up the win when the Mohawks walked off in the bottom of the ninth. Between Sabato and Zack Durant, the Mohawks allowed just two baserunners in the final four innings, claiming a 9-8 victory that ended nearly four hours after it started in one of the all-time great games in league playoff history.
Central Division First Round Most Outstanding Player: Addison Pawelek, Watertown (Wayne State)
Facing an explosive Mohawk Valley offense, Addison Pawelek shut down the DiamondDawgs for seven innings, allowing just one run on five hits. The Wayne State righthander tossed five shutout innings before allowing the sole run against him to score in the sixth. After the Rapids retook the lead in the top of the seventh, Pawelek tossed one final scoreless frame to put him in line for the victory, dethroning the defending champions. The victory for the Rapids was the first ever for a PGCBL team from Watertown, as the previous franchise was 0-3 in postseason play.
West Division First Round Most Outstanding Player: Jack Harris, Geneva (San Francisco State)
Harris was one of the best players in the PGCBL in the month of July, but may have saved his best game for Geneva's first ever win in the PGCBL Playoffs. The outfielder went 4-for-4 with two home runs and two doubles, driving in five of Geneva's seven runs in a 7-5 victory over the Elmira Pioneers. The San Francisco State product hit a solo home run in the second, an RBI double in the sixth, and capped his day with a decisive blow, a three-run home run in the bottom of the seventh that proved to be the difference, as the Red Wings advanced to the PGCBL Semifinals for the first time in franchise history.
The PGCBL will name a Most Outstanding Player for both PGCBL Semifinals, as well as the PGCBL Finals.