by: David Petschenko
With only nine games remaining in the 2014 campaign, the CornBelters would need nothing short of a miracle to make their way into the playoffs.
The Frontier League Playoff system works like this: The winner of each division is automatically in and receives a first round bye. Instead of the second and third place teams from each conference rounding out the lucky six, the Frontier League Committee has laid things out a little differently. The four teams with the best record (not including the division winner) advance to the playoffs. Three of those four are likely to be from the East with the Schaumburg Boomers being the lone team from the West advancing.
The Belters are six games back of the last spot in the playoffs with nine games left to play. They are the hottest team in the Frontier League, winning 10 of their last 12 games. Needless to say, there is no doubt in my mind they are completely capable of winning the amount of games necessary to capture that last spot. However, this is where the miracle is needed. Even if the CornBelters win all nine of their remaining games, they would need either Lake Erie, Evansville, Southern or River City to lose each of its remaining games to have a chance at getting in.
As if it’s not hard enough to win nine games in a row against the worst teams in the league, the three teams the CornBelters have to play over the next week and a half all have winning records. The Belters last home series begins Tuesday night against Lake Erie. After that series, they head to Southern for a weekend series and then close out the season at Schaumburg.
It’s that time of the season where players must dig deep and find what they’ve been searching for all year. Nothing that happened earlier in the season matters anymore. It’s a nine game season, and it’s up to the CornBelters to decide if they want to play well into September.