The Numbers Keep Growing
20 Wins in France
As happens every spring, and 2017 was no different, the season began with a clean slate for everyone. As the weeks have passed us by, team by team, we've seen every undefeated record fall but one. Heading into the third month of the season, one club throughout European baseball and softball has maintained their perfect record. 20 games into their season, the Toulon Comanches softball team are 20-0.
500 Runs in Finland
At the close of the 2016 regular season, Espoo Expo Pertteli "Pepe" Salmenperä was two runs shy of setting a record. This year, he's managed to complete the task. On May 21st, the 41-year old catcher crossed the plate for the 500th time, setting not only a personal and team record, but a federation one as well. And it's not his first record either.
In fact, Salmenperä's other Finnish record may also be a world record. Though four MLB stars have done it in a single game, Salmenperä may be the only player to have recorded at least one inning in every fielding position during international play for the national team.
The Espoo Expos have won 14 straight Finnish championships since 2003. Their captain has more than a little to do with that success. National team member for 15 years and captain there as well, he was the federation’s National Team Player for the 2015 season.
The catcher sometimes pitcher and all around utility infielder has been with the Expos since 1994. Through 2016 he ranked Top 10 in Expos History in all 5 offensive categories. He finished #1 in at bats with 899, which is 50 more than the next guy. He was 5th all time in hits with 291, tied for 8th in home runs with 14, 5th in RBIs with 210 and 1st in stolen bases with 344, but he stands alone when it comes to hits. When the season ended in 2016, the next closest any teammate had ever gotten to him was 60 runs behind.
1,000 Innings in Germany
In 2003 Andre Hughes took the mound for the first time in the Bundesliga. He did it wearing the same uniform he does today and, aside from one year in the Hoofdklasse in the Netherlands, he has remained a Solingen Alligator.
Since 2005 Hughes has also been a regular in the German national team’s starting rotation. He pitched for the team in the 2008 Olympic qualifiers where he held a 1.80 ERA over 15 innings of work, including 6 innings of shutout ball against Taiwan, walking 2 and striking out 10 for the tournament.
This season he’s pitched 60.2 innings over 8 games. Starter in 7 of those appearances he’s won 4, lost 2 and given up 12 earned runs while striking out 38. His current ERA is 1.780 with a WHIP of 1.038.
On May 28th the LHP completed his 1,000th inning on the mound in the midst of throwing the 4th. With two outs recorded against the Paderborn Untouchables, the game was temporarily suspended while Hughes was given a curtain call.