World Series S22: New Britain's Empire Strikes Back

World Series 22 featured a return of the New Britain Bombers against a Jackson team making its franchise's first visit to the World Series. Despite putting an incredible fight to the end and Sizzling to a game 7, it would be the veteran Bombers taking home their third World Series trophy.

Game 1: New Britain 0, Jackson 1
George Crandall faced off against Timo Fujiwara in the series opener and its closest game. In front of a sellout crowd in Jackson, this incredible pitching matchup became a bullpen game after six innings. Felipe Alvarez, who had entered the game as a pinch runner in the 8th inning, became the game's hero with a walk-off homerun in the 10th to give the Sizzle the series' first victory.

Game 2: New Britain 6, Jackson 5
Steven Reith and Kelly McPherson made quick exits after 5 innings each, but despite a close game, New Britain edged the one run victory. Don Hasegawa homered for New Britain.

Game 3: Jackson 3, New Britain 11
With the series tied and moving to New Britain, the Bombers's offense impressed the home crowd with an 11 run explosion. The Sizzle's Darryl Glass was on a short leash and got pulled after 2 innings and 4 earned runs, mostly on a 3 run blast by the Bomber's Harold Coffman. Reliever Jim Glass failed to get an out but gave up 3 more run, letting New Britain take a 7-2 lead by the end of the 3rd. Ezdra Ramirez gave the Bombers bullpen a rest with 8 solid and effective innings where he threw only 96 pitches. The Bombers hit 4 home runs in this game, and Coffman, Alexander Green and Howard Robinson each drove in 3 runs.

Game 4: Jackson 3, New Britain 2
Jackson's Torey Lopez gave his team exactly what they needed, with 8 solid innings. Lopez pitched brilliantly through the night, mixing curveballs, changeups and sliders to keep the Bombers off balance and turning poor contact into outs. Lopez made two pitching mistakes, with two hanging curveballs that became home runs off of Harold Coffman and Rob Bailes. Jackson only scored three times off of George Crandall, but this was enough for the win this time. Ismael Melo led off the game with a home run and Mac Aoki got two hits in the winning effort to tie the series at 2-2.

Game 5: Jackson 7, New Britain 10
Timo Fujiwara and Tom Snelling were the starting pitchers in a high scoring game that would ultimately go to New Britain. Neither starter pitched particularly well, but while Snelling lasted 6 innings, Fujiwara was pulled after 3 1/3 and became the first in a parade of 8 Jackson picthers. Catcher Harold Coffman homered again and drove in three runs for New Britain. In the bottom of the 4th, with Jackson leading 4-0, Coffman hit a 3-run blast to chase Fujiwara. Darryl Glass, appearing in relief, was immediately greeted with a homerun by Howard Robinson to tie the game. New Britain wasn't done,and by the time the inning was over, they would lead the game 9-4 and never surrendered the lead. Vin Mondesi also homered for New Britain.

Game 6: New Britain 1, Jackson 7
Back to Jackson and looking to clench the series, New Britain sent Game 3 starter Ezdra Ramirez to the mound. Ramirez pitched well enough through 6 innings to keep his team in the game, but was chased on a 2-Run homer by Felipe Alvarez in the 7th. Billy Darensbourg drove in two more runs, and Jackson scored 4 times in the 7th and never looked back after that. Jackson pitchers combined to allow only one run (a homerun by Howard Robinson) and Daryl Glass earned the victory in relief. Jackson's Pascual James had three hits and scored twice.

Game 7: New Britain 10, Jackson 8
Torey Lopez and George Crandall faced off in Game 7, but in a surprise move, the lefthanded Lopez was pulled after facing two batters for right hander Darryl Glass. The two batters faced by Lopez scored - a leadoff double by Hick Delahanty was followed by a 2 run homer by Don Hasegawa. Glass was greeted by a homer off the bat of Chris Tobin to give New Britain a 3 run lead. George Crandall didn't fare much better, giving up 7 runs in 3 1/3 and laboring with a high pitch count. Jackson built an 8-4 lead going into the 6th inning, in part on homers by Ismael Melo and Kevin Sikorski. Jackson's bullpen could not hold the large lead, giving up a 3 run home run to pinch hitter Vin Mondesi in the 6th to make it 8-7. The game's decision maker came in the 8th inning, when Chris Tobin hit a 2 out linedrive 3 run homer over the left field wall off of reliever Eddie Gardner. Jackson threatened in the 7th with runners on first and third, but Mac Aoki struck out looking to end the inning. New Britain's bullpen shut the door in the 8th and 9th,and rookie Julian Almanza earned the save with a perfect 9th to give New Britain another World Series title.

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