December 30 - The Falls Church Barons have been named the magazine’s 2018 Men’s League Team of the Year after sweeping the D.C. Wood summer and fall league championships for a third straight year.
The 2018 Teams of the Year are sponsored by Pitchers Edge in Vienna.
Coached by Jake Glaser and Rafael Martinez, the Barons battled back after dropping the first two games in their best-of-five summer championship series to defeat the Arlington Mallards, then won a deciding third game in a best-of-three fall championship series against Arlington BMT.
The Barons have won eight summer and fall league titles - including six straight - and have now earned the magazine’s Team of the Year award for the second time in three years.
This year’s other nominees included the Oakton Orioles, the Federal Baseball League runner-up, and the D.C. Knights, who defeated the Orioles in the FedBall league championship series. Nominees were not submitted from other area leagues such as the D.C. Men’s Senior Baseball League (MSBL), the Legends Baseball League, the Ponce De Leon Baseball League, or the Industrial League of Northern Virginia.
In the fifth story in our Year in Review series, the magazine summarizes each of the nominees for our Men’s League Team of the Year:
Team: Falls Church Barons
League: D.C. Wood
Head Coach: Jake Glaser
Assistant Coaches: Rafael Martinez
Record: 33-8 overall (22-6 summer, 11-3 fall)
Team Summary: With their backs against the wall after dropping the first two games of the D.C. Wood summer championship best-of-five series against the Arlington Mallards, the Barons won three straight to claim their fifth straight league title. They’d add a sixth in the fall after beating Arlington BMT in a best-of-three series, clinching an eighth overall league title. Shaun McEnhimer, who shared the team’s summer team MVP award with Nathan Rogers, led the club in several offensive categories this year, including batting average (.382), hits (39), home runs (4) and RBI (37). The pitching staff was anchored by Paul McClure, who led the Barons in wins (10), ERA (2.26), strikeouts (117) and innings (82.1) and was named the team’s Pitcher of the Year for the summer season.
Team: D.C. Knights
League: Federal Baseball League
Head Coach: Adam Warfield
Assistant Coaches: Cal Snyder, Ralph Hernandez, Casey McDonald, Jay McEvoy
Record: 19-6 overall (including playoffs)
Team Summary: The Knights finished second during the FedBall regular season over the summer, then went 4-1 in the postseason. They swept the best-of-two championship series against the two-time defending league champion Oakton Orioles. Rafael Hernandez anchored the team’s pitching staff, going 7-1 with a 1.55 ERA, while Wyatt Kinney (.469), Dutch Whitaker (.459) and Tim Denevi (.449) paced the team offensively. Whitaker led the Knights with two homers and 31 RBI.
Team: Oakton Orioles
League: Federal Baseball League
Head Coach: Kevin McGuiney
Assistant Coaches: Scott Kelske, Paul Vogt, Glenn Gray, Chris Simms, Jamien Payne, Brian Tomardy
Record: 20-4 overall (including playoffs)
Team Summary: The Orioles claimed the top seed in the FedBall playoffs, but were swept by the D.C. Knights in the best-of-three championship series to fall short of a third straight league title. The team won its final 12 regular season games and its first three in the playoffs before dropping the games to the Knights. Chris Knee was named the team’s Most Valuable Player. Individual player statistics were not provided.
Photo of Derek Caylor courtesy of Falls Church Barons