The Harold Gellis z”l CBY Men’s Softball League concluded their season last week. Even though the season was shortened due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all participants were thrilled to have a chance to play this summer.
The finals saw the #1 seed Scrubs face off against the #3 seed New Crew. Both teams went through three rounds of playoffs to reach the finals for a best of three series that took all three games to settle and for a new champion* to be crowned.
In game one, the Scrubs were kept off the board for the first six innings as the New Crew took a 4-0 lead. The bottom of the seventh inning though was a different story as the first five Scrubs batters reached base safely. With two outs and the lead now just 4-3, Sralli Schwartz singled in the tying run and Chaim Alter hit a walk-off single, completing the 5-4 comeback win.
With the shock of game one still fresh in their minds, New Crew regained their composure in game two and jumped ahead 3-2 by the third inning and ultimately, the game went to the seventh inning tied at four. The Scrubs went down quietly in the top of the seventh, giving New Crew a chance for some late game magic of their own. With one out, and the bases loaded, Rabbi Yosef Weinberger hit a fly ball just deep enough to bring in Rabbi Andrew Israeli from third base with the winning run and give the New Crew their own walk-off 5-4 win.
There was no rest for the weary as game three started just minutes later. Despite these teams being the two highest scoring teams in the league, the deciding game would prove to be another low scoring affair as pitchers Ari Schwartz (Scrubs) and Doug Blumenfeld (New Crew) pitched all three games for their teams and continued to hold down the opposing offenses. The game was tied 1-1 going into the fifth inning when Adam Ehrenreich hit a two run home run that would give the New Crew a lead they would not give back. After a few tack on runs by both sides, including a seventh inning home from New Crew captain, Dani Weinberger, The New Crew came away with the 7-4 victory and the 2020 league championship.
The commissioners would like to thank all teams and players for their participation and compliance with all health and safety guidelines that allowed this season to be possible. We are also grateful to the Township of Teaneck and Borough of Paramus and their employees for opening their fields to us.
By Naftali Levenbrown