Perfect night to play: But Superiorland Baseball League contest becomes an exhibition without enough players

Kyle Dobson of 906 Sports Bar & Grill bats in an exhibition Superiorland Baseball League game against Coldwell Banker-Craig Heinonen on Monday evening at the Forsyth Township Ball Park in Gwinn. (Journal photo by Corey Kelly)

“It’s an opportunity for the guys who play slowpitch softball or even fastpitch softball to get back to baseball.” — Zac Sorelle, 906 Sports Bar & Grill catcher, on the Superiorland Baseball League

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GWINN — It was a perfect night for baseball Monday with the sun going down in the background and temperatures in the low 70s.

Even though outside conditions were nice, things weren’t ideal for Superiorland Baseball League team 906 Sports Bar & Grill as it didn’t have enough players to field a team against scheduled opponent Coldwell Banker-Craig Heinonen at the Forsyth Township Ball Park in Gwinn.

However, the two teams made the best of the situation and played an exhibition game that everyone seemed to enjoy playing in.

“It was a lot of fun,” 906 catcher Zac Sorelle said. “Unfortunately, we didn’t have enough guys to make it a real game, but the plan was just to have fun. That’s what the league is all about. It’s an opportunity for the guys who play slowpitch softball or even fastpitch softball to get back to baseball.

“There’s a lot of guys who played in college so you can’t come out here and not take it seriously. It does count and we do have playoffs, but it’s just really about coming out and enjoying baseball again.”

The game had a few highlights with Coldwell’s Paul Storm hitting both a grand slam and a solo shot, while Sorelle had an RBI single in the bottom of the third inning and Kyle Motyka hit a two-run double in the fourth for 906 Sports.

The overall focus, though, was just to enjoy the game and have a nice tune-up before the postseason begins in two weeks.

“We do a tournament with the top two seeds getting a bye,” Sorelle said. “The No. 3 seed plays the No. 6 and No. 4 plays No. 5. Also, the way we do it, the higher seed picks the field to play on. So we’ll either play out of Gwinn, Negaunee or Channing.”

To wrap up the regular season on Monday, 906 Sports plays the Channing Railroaders in Channing at 7 p.m. EDT, while Coldwell Banker-Craig Heinonen plays Congress Pizza in Gwinn at 6:30 p.m. and the Negaunee Blasters face the Marquette County Mavericks in Negaunee, also at 6:30.

The playoffs begin with play-in games for the four lower seeds either Wednesday, Aug. 16, or Thursday, Aug. 17. The winners will then face the top two seeds in a four-team playoff on Saturday, Aug. 19.

Other league games

Around the rest of the league on Monday, Channing defeated the Mavericks 5-1 in Channing, securing the top seed and the home-field advantage for the playoffs with a 7-0 record. The Mavericks fell to 6-2.

Channing scored in every inning but the fifth, while the Mavericks got a run in the fourth on a Brad Jalonen RBI.

The Negaunee Blasters defeated Congress Pizza 9-5 in Negaunee, though information about the game was not available.

Ryan Stieg can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 252. His email address is rstieg@miningjournal.net.