2014 Chicago Men’s PLAYOFFS – Final4 Softball (Aug. 11)

Updated: August 14, 2014

Monday Night was supposed to bring us a coronation of a 1st-Time Champion.. However, the rain had other plans.. Before the rain washed us away, we did have two epic Final4 Battles.  In this edition of the Wrap-Up we’ll go through what took place last Monday Night and Preview the upcoming Championship Game looming Next Monday Night. First, here’s a Link to the Weekly Video Highlights with Final4 action!

Final Note, remember that the Champions will get to take home either a Trolley from Chicago Trolley and Double Decker Co. or Tix to Wrigley View Rooftop for a Cubs Game!  Regular Season Champs – Team Holzman will take home the other Prize (or potentially both.. scroll down to find out!).  Let’s get to it!

Final4 Softball

1. Team Holzman (Trifecta Grill) v. 4. Team Zimmerman (Duke Cannon Supply Co.) – 4. Team Zimmerman wins 13-1

Team Holzman entered the Final4 as the most under-the-radar #1 Seed and Regular Season Champs of all-time.  While they didn’t get the oohs and ahhs throughout the Regular Season that many Teams did in the stacked Chicago Men’s League, they just continued week after to week to defeat the Teams put in front of them.  Team Zimmerman finished the Regular Season with after several impressive Ws as well..  Each Team reached the Final4 after notching 2 huge Playoff victories in the Sweet16 and Elite8 Hoops Rounds.. By all accounts this was a matchup of titans.  Both groups were entering their first Final4 and could taste the Crown..

Unfortunately for Team Holzman, their dream came to a screeching halt as the rain poured down on Monday Night.  Ross “Randy Johnson” Neuman who recorded a shut-out in his first start a few weeks back was simply dealing on the bump Monday Night.  Team Holzman managed to get across a run but it was unearned and, thus, Ross Neuman will finish the season with a 0.00 era in 16″ Softball.. If Team Zimmerman does win the Championship many will be able to point to his right shoulder as a gigantic reason why… Team Zimmerman will compete in the Championship Football Game next Monday Night… We’ll find out who their opponent is in just a bit..

For Team Holzman, everyone’s hat must go off to them.. They finished 1st in the largest (and most talented) All Sports Series in the League’s 5-year history.  They won the 2014 Volleyball Tourney and took down many others in their road to the Final4.  They won’t have the luxury of flying under the radar in 2015 but they will be up to the task.. You could be looking at next year’s eventual Champs.

6. Team Hadelman  (Chicago Trolley & Double Decker Co.) v. 10. Team Watts (West Coast Shaving) – 10. Team Watts wins 10-6

Team Hadelman were the 2013 Runners-Up and had been chomping at the bit to exercise their softball demons in the Playoffs for a Year.  Consecutive Final4s in the Chicago Men’s League is one of the more impressive accomplishments that any Franchise has had in All Sports Series and these guys did it in their first 2 seasons.  Just to get to the Final4 they had to knock off two of the more storied Teams in the Chicago Men’s League’s history — Team Kornblatt and the Dynasty (2x Summer Champs and Hoops Champs) Team Hakimian..  Team Watts, also appearing in their 2nd Final4 (first since 2011),  had an equally impressive run to the Final4 in terms of Playoff Ws — knocking off Team Wilneff and Defending Champs Team Maione to get here.. However, their Regular Season was not the type we come to expect out of Team Watts.. Captain Jake reconfigured a lot of the roster for 2014 and it took some time to get everyone on the same page especially with that tough schedule of theirs.. They certainly are clicking at the right time.

As for Monday Night.. The rain kept coming and even led to a brief rain delay in the middle of this one.. Team Hadelman broke out to a commanding lead and really controlled much of the game.  The rain delay allowed Team Watts to regain their composure though and after the hiatus the Game really did a 180.  Team Watts would eventually find a rhythm at the plate and tied the Game at 5. Heading into the final 7th inning we were still tied and the spot in the Championship Game was truly up for grabs.. In the top of the 7th — Team Watts continued their offensive surge and hung up 5 runs on the board..  Minutes later they were celebrating their first Championship Game trip.  They actually met Team Zimmerman back in July — it didn’t end well, but that was on the diamond and not the gridiron.. More on that in a bit.

For Team Hadelman — they’ll leave 2014 without their ultimate goal of a Championship.  However, 2014 served as season where they permanently cemented themselves as a top tier squad in the Chicago Men’s League.  These guys who have now gone to two straight Final4s know what they need to do to get over that hump.. Captain Spencer will undoubtedly be working the phones in the off-season to procure a couple more softball players. For the rest of the League, if (and when) that happens, it’s really all she wrote.. These guys are as close to the complete package as you can get really.. Entering 2015, they are your likely front-runners. Thanks for a great season gentlemen.

CHAMPIONSHIP Football – Preview

4. Team Zimmerman (Duke Cannon Supply Co.) v. 10. Team Watts (West Coast Shaving) 

From 24 down to 2.. These Teams have earned the right to play for the Championship as they have both knocked off 3 talented Teams to get to this point.. Both are entering their 1st Championship Game.. Both know the sting of Playoff defeat and how rare these Championship opportunities are.. Team Watts is playing in their 4th Season.. Their first 3 years have left them with a heartbreaking Playoff L each and every Summer..  They have been the ultimate “what if” squad.. On Monday Night, they have a chance to get that “what if” monkey off their back and claim what has been so close for so long.. Captain Jake has been eagerly making roster moves for years in order to hold that Crown.. They are just 40 minutes away now.. Team Zimmerman played in their first All Sports Series last Summer and it didn’t take long for them to make a name for themselves.. They didn’t go as deep as they wanted in their Rookie season, but they learned from it and Captain Jack made the necessary adjustments to put his Team in a fantastic position to claim the Crown in 2014.    Team Zimmerman did defeat Team Watts earlier this year.. Softball is a much different game than Flag Football obviously and it’s really a toss-up heading into Monday Night’s Championship Game.

By this time next week we’ll know who won the most competitive League in All Sports Series history. Good Luck!!