07/31/2016 7:59 AM
The Bulls finished up the 2016 WMBL Regular Season on Friday night in front of a sell out crowd at Spitz Stadium. Over 2100 Lethbridge fans packed the park to see the Bulls pick up a 13-10 win over the Edmonton Prospects. With that win the Bulls finished the season with a 27-20 record good for 3rd place in the West Division. With that 3rd place seed the Bulls will head to Medicine Hat to take on the Mavericks in the first round of the WMBL Playoffs. Last year these two teams met in the second round of the playoffs and the Bulls took all 3 games on their way to the 2015 WMBL Championship.
When play starts Sunday evening these two teams will know each other very well. The West Division rivals played 8 times this season splitting the series 4-4. The Mavs took the first 3 meetings of the season, but the Bulls rebounded to win 4 of the last 5. These two teams are built very similar and it is sure to be an exciting series. Game 1 will take place Sunday evening starting at 5:05pm at Athletic Park in Medicine Hat.
Now that the season has come to an end, we can take a quick look at some of the incredible seasons the Bulls had this year. Mitch McGeein was a standout on offence finishing with this statline: 35 GP, .379 AVG, 33 R, 14 2B, 2 3B, 13 HR, 44 RBI. McGeein led the WMBL in homeruns and finished 2nd in RBI’s. Adding to the offensive cause was Mike Moffatt: 38 GP, .331, 32 R, 9 2B, 2 3B, 8 HR, 30 RBI. Both players arrived to the team a little late, and were still among the league leaders in a handful of categories. Veteran catcher Travis Steinke had a very consistent year hitting .329 in 43 games. Steinke was 2nd in the league in doubles with 17, and 6th in RBI with 37. The Bulls will need these three hitters to produce in the middle of the lineup in the Playoffs if they look to defend the title they won last season. It will be no easy feat, as any team in the West can win on any night.
On the other side of the ball freshman pitcher Tanner Jesson-Dalton out of the Prairie Baseball Academy has led the way. Dalton threw 43.2 innings in the summer with a 4-0 record and a 2.26 ERA. Dalton will start game 1 on Sunday, and will look to put the Bulls in a position to win. Dalton is a fierce competitor who should thrive in the big game atmosphere. Lethbridge native Landen Bourassa had a great summer for the Bulls splitting time in the rotation and the bullpen. Bourassa pitched to a 3.40 ERA with 30 K’s in 37 innings. Mid summer addition Mackenzie Major has also been pitching very well out of the bullpen as of late. Major had a 1.90 ERA in 28.1 innings pitched in the regular season. The Bulls finished with a 4.34 team ERA in 2016.
Spitz Stadium was once again one of the top draws in the WMBL. For the season the Bulls attendance came in at 24,281, good for the 3rd in the league. The Bulls had 23 openings, 1 short due to a rainout, which averages out to 1,056 per game. It was a great season to be a Bulls fan, and lets make sure to come out and support the boys on Tuesday night in Lethbridge for game 3 of the opening series against Medicine Hat. Good luck boys, go get it done!