Birdball Officially Crowned 2017 Beanpot Champions

In anticlimactic fashion, Boston College has defended its Baseball Beanpot title.

Last Wednesday’s championship game between BC (16-22, 6-15 Atlantic Coast) and Harvard University (16-20, 5-11 Ivy League) at Fenway Park only lasted four and a half innings before officials halted the game due to inclement weather. Coaches from BC and Harvard had hoped to find a common date to finish the game at one of the teams’ home fields, but no such date was available. It was announced on Tuesday afternoon that the 3-2 score from the top of the fifth inning would be recorded as official.

The victory over Harvard, BC’s second of the season, marks the third-consecutive Beanpot title and the 13th title overall for Birdball.

“It’s great to get a W on this field—or close to a W, or whatever you want to call that,” Gambino said following the conclusion of the game. “Regardless of the number of innings that you play, anytime you can leave the field with the lead feels pretty good.”

Freshman Jake Alu scored the game-winning run for the Eagles by doing all of the work on the basepaths himself. After working a walk against Harvard pitcher JT Bernard, Alu stole second base, then took third base without a throw from the catcher, then stole home plate on a wild pitch.

That happened on three consecutive pitches.

“One of the things we work on is looking to get that second bag as soon as we steal,” Alu said after last week’s game. “I got a good read on his delivery and got a good jump off of second base.”

With five home games relocated, three games rescheduled, and four games postponed completely—including contests originally scheduled for this week against UMass Lowell and Bryant—BC has battled against Mother Nature even more so than usual in this ongoing season. Having to adjust on the fly comes with the territory when trying to play baseball on a grass field in Boston in the early springtime, but it doesn’t seem to bother Gambino’s players one bit.

“That’s our life, man,” Gambino said. “Where are we playing our home games? What time are we hitting? That’s our life, but the boys do a great job of adjusting. Their biggest concern was whether the pregame subs were gonna get here on time.”

Well, did they?

“They did,” Gambino said with a smile.

Sitting in last place in the ACC, it will take some luck for BC to sneak into the ACC Tournament, but it’s not impossible. The Eagles have six conference games left on their schedule, and they’ll likely need to win at least four or five of them to have a chance. This weekend, they welcome Miami to town for a rematch of last year’s Super Regional series. BC ends the season with a crucial home series against the University of Notre Dame, who sits right above BC in the Atlantic Division.

The conference recently changed the format of its postseason baseball tournament, with the bracket updated to include 12 teams instead of 10. The teams will be split into four pools of three teams for a round robin stage, and the winner of each pool will advance to a single-elimination bracket to determine the conference champion.

Featured Image by Julia Hopkins / Heights Editor

April 26, 2017