2016 Chicago Summer 16″ Softball – Playoff Preview (Sept. 11)

Updated: September 13, 2016

We have reached the conclusion of the Regular Season and now “Win or Go Home” time is upon us.. All 10 Teams will enter the Playoffs with a shot at the Crown.. Some obviously with better shots than others at this point.. The Top-6 Teams have already qualified for next Sunday’s Elite8 Round while the Bottom-4 Teams will have to battle in an extra Opening Round to earn the final two spots in the Elite8!  This week we are going to Preview each and every Playoff matchup!

Here’s the Link to the Weekly Highlight Video! 

One more thing before we get to the Power Rankings, our MVP Sponsor for the Chicago Summer Leagues is none other than Live Clean Chicago! They are the best Cleaning Service in Chicago bar none and more importantly you can trust them to clean your place (even if you aren’t home). Myself and my family (Holden) use them frequently!  One more brief mention as it’s likely you will want to know..   The Cubs are officially BACK and  Wrigley View Rooftop has you covered! There is no better experience for getting Cubs action while enjoying the perks of all you can eat/drink!

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Playoff Preview

Opening Round Games

7. Team Sternberg (Camp Ojibwa) v. 10. Team Less (Alternative)

Winner plays 2. Team Max (Theory) in Elite8

Both Teams come into this Opening Round match-up wanting to wipe away Regular Seasons in which they felt they underperformed.. Both are also capable of winning not just one but two Games on Sunday afternoon.  Yes, Team Less is still searching for their first W of the season, but they have been improving and if they can just get past Team Sternberg and qualify for the Opening Round.. There’s no telling what some confidence could do for them.. On the flip side, Team Sternberg is thinking if they can defeat the winless Team Less they will get a rematch with Rivals Team Max. The same group who they played closely this past Sunday and without Captain Sam Sternberg leading the charge.. It is a group they can beat…  We’ve seen Teams win multiple Games on these days before.. Can one of these two groups get all the way to the Final4? We’ll find out Sunday.


8. Team Emer (Live Clean CHI) v. 9. Team McLaughlin (Worth Sports)

Winner plays 1. Team Zimmerman in Elite8

These two squads actually finished tied for the 8th spot through 7 weeks but Team Emer got the nod and will be the Home Team as the #8 seed thanks to a tougher Strength of Schedule throughout the Regular Season. Much of what was said above in the Sternberg/Less section can be echoed here.. Only thing is, the Winner here has the very tough (and undefeated) #1 Team Zimmerman staring at them in a potential Elite8 date… First things first however, both Teams Emer and McLaughlin have shown flashes this Summer of really good ball clubs.. They just haven’t been able to avoid big innings in their Losses and it has been their downfall. These Teams did not meet in the Regular Season, so it will be a fresh matchup with both Playoff lives hanging in the balance. What’s better than that!?



1. Team Zimmerman v. Winner of 8/9

#1 Team Zimmerman has been simply dominant in the Regular Season.  They will be heavy favorites against whoever their opponent winds up being in the Elite8 (8. Emer or 9. McLaughlin).. Often times you’d be nervous for a group coming into the Playoffs undefeated and the burden that places on them in an already intense situation.. However, Team Zimmerman is not most Teams.. They are the reigning 2x Champs of the Chicago Men’s “All Sports” League.. A feat that had never been done until them. They know how to win come Playoff time.  You know how Defense wins Championships? Well this group has allowed a remarkable 3.2 runs per Game.. Which is almost two runs better than any other Team in the League. Sup Ross Neuman? The list of favorites starts and ends with #1.


4. Team Holzman (Dr. Jacob D.D.S. Lime) v. 5. Team Karmin (SLA Insurance)

One of the best match-ups on the docket for Sunday is Holzman v. Karmin with a spot in the Final4 on the line.. Both Teams have shown that they can beat the best this Summer and only one will get to compete on the final Sunday of the Season.  Both Teams post serious threats at the plate… Brett Greenspan led the League with total times reaching base.. He got on base 20 of his 26 appearances in the Regular Season.  He is joined by Danny Goldin who was in the Top-5 for Home Runs.. The opposition is not short on sticks as well as Alex Loewenstein finished 2nd in both the Home Run and RBI races..  Both Teams are going to put pressure on the opposing Defenses and it will likely come down to the Team who makes the least amount of mistakes in the field..  That was the case a few weeks back when Team Holzman defeated Team Karmin 10-5.. Will history repeat itself in the all-important Rematch?


2. Team Max (Theory) v. Winner of 7/10

Team Max awaits the Winner of 7. Sternberg and 10. Less… Whoever their opponent is will be coming in with some momentum off of a Playoff Win.. As long as Team Max can withstand the likely early surge they will be just fine.. It will certainly be interesting to see if 7. Team Sternberg gets through and these two Rivals have to duke it out for a spot in the Final4.. Team Max has really been great all season long and they are heavy favorites to be playing on the final Sunday of the season.. Frank Maione led the League in both RBIs and Home Runs during the Regular Season.  Their Defense has been a big reason why as well as they have allowed just 5 runs per Game this season, that is second best in the League.. Captain Tyler and co. are ready for an extended Playoff run..


3. Team Massel (StudentCity) v. 6. Team Golembo (BBQ Pit)

No Game is more intriguing this Sunday than this one.. Team Massel steamrolled the competition this Summer by only dropping one Game and winning many in impressive fashion. It was good enough to grab the #3 overall seed coming into the Playoffs. One of those impressive Wins was in comeback fashion all the way back in Week 1 by a score of 15-10 over Team Golembo.. In that Game, we saw Team Golembo jump out to an early lead but they couldn’t close it out.. They are much improved since Week 1 and if the Bracket fell a different way it’s very possible we could have seen this Game in the Final4.. Instead, these two Teams will compete in a big time Rematch and only one can move on the Final Sunday of the Softball Season.


Good Luck to everyone this Sunday!