The ECBA in the Baseball Hall of Fame

The ECBA in the Baseball Hall of Fame
On May 22 – 23, 2012, the East Coast Baseball Association (ECBA) played the first Strat-O-Matic baseball series at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. Maryland Mayhem and Woodstock Sabres’ managers, Mark Gratkowski and Larry Fryer were the happy participants. Appropriately enough, future HOF’er, Jim Thome blasted the first “Strat” homerun in the HOF, when he connected with a “1-10” roll in the second inning of the first game. This game was subsequently won by the Sabres by a 6-1 margin, with Timothy “The Freak” Lincecum going 6 innings (fanning 10) for the win.  
The HOF library/research center was the site of the historic ten-game series, with the Sabres winning seven of the games. Jay Bruce blasted four of his 38 season homeruns in the series, with Mark Trumbo adding three.
One of the more interesting games of the series was the last, won by the Mayhem 7-6 in 11 innings. The Mayhem scored the go-ahead run in the 11th when Gold Glover Jay Bruce committed a two-base error, followed by Jesus Montero’s second error in extra innings during his first appearance at catcher during the year.
Traditionally, the winner of the series among the Maryland contingent of the ECBA lays claim to the “Maryland Cup.” This series paved the way for Larry Fryer to win the 2012 honors, to be forever immortalized on the official bat, procured during the visit to Cooperstown.
Mark Gratkowski and Larry Fryer with the Maryland Cup bat.

Mark, Larry, Babe and Ted

Larry celebrates the first Strat HOF homerun hit by Jim Thome (May 22, 2012).