Kotlářka Praha to face Draci Brno again in baseball finals
Prague team hopes to retain title while Brno seeks its 20th win since 1995
The Extraliga baseball final will see the same match up for the fourth time in a row: Kotlářka Praha versus Draci Brno. The two teams will meet in a best-of-five series and the first two games of the finals will be Aug. 13 and 14 at Kotlářka's home stadium, Markéta. Then the teams will meet in Brno on Aug. 19 and if necessary on Aug. 20, and then be back in Prague on Aug 21.
Both teams went into the playoffs with season scores of 27 wins and eight losses. In the semifinals this year, Kotlářka beat the Eagles Praha, but it took four games. The Eagles won the first game with 10 runs to Kotlářka's 3, but then Kotlářka rallied to win the next three games 7:6, 13:2 and 10:4. Draci defeated the Arrows Ostrava in three straight games — 6:2, 8:2 and 6:5.
“Kotlárka and Draci have faced off in the finals for the past three years. We won our first title last year. Draci looks to win its 20th championship. It has become a strong rivalry between Prague and Brno,” Kotlárka manager Kris Richards said.
Kotlářka won the finals in 2015 in a tournament that took all five games to decide. Kotlářka won the first game over Draci, but lost the next two before coming back to win the final two.
It was no small accomplishment for Kotlářka to overcome Draci for the title. The Brno powerhouse had won the title every year since 1995, save for 2011 when crosstown rivals Technika Brno won.
The teams have their differences, one being that Kotlárka is a much newer team. Kotlářka has had a senior men's team only since 2008, but has roots in youth teams going back to 1982. Draci has a history going back to 1972.
“My team is known for hitting and Draci is known for pitching. Draci has older, experienced players and Kotlářka has young athletic talent,” Richards said.
He is hopeful that Kotlářka will defend its title, but he expects a tough series. “I hope it goes three games in our favor, but I think it has the chance to go five games. It will come down to the team that pitches and does the fundamentals,” Richards said.
The small details matter. “Championship playoff baseball comes down to which team executes the little things the most. I think we are in a good position to repeat,” Richards added.
While baseball is a top sport in North America, with the annual World Series being one of the most-watched events on TV, it is struggling to get mass appeal outside of there and a few other isolated places like Latin America and Japan.
The game was in the Olympics unofficially starting in 1904, but has not been played consistently. It was an official sport from 1992 to 2008, but it was not in the London Games in 2012 and will not be in the current Rio Games. It will return in 2020 when Tokyo hosts the Games.
The Czech Republic so far has not entered a team in any of the Olympics. Czech national team came in fourth place in the 2014 European Baseball Championship.
Draci Brno www.draci.cz
Kotlářka Praha www.kotlarka.com
Baseball Czech www.baseball.cz
Foto: Martin Salajka www.fotosalajka.com
More Prague lakes may open for swimming by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV (Foto: czechtourism.com)
Kyje is one of several districts planning to upgrade local lakes and ponds
There is still time to register for Heavy Hitters by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV
The fall edition of the charity softball tournament is Oct. 8 and 9
Service for Věra Čáslavská by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV (Foto: wikipedia.org)
Gymnast is remembered for her silent protest at the 1968 Olympics
Bohemians 1905 may lose Ďolíček stadium by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV (Foto: FB Bohemians Praha 1905)
The City and Prague 10 disagree over the purchase of the stadium
Martin Šonka makes final four in Lausitz, Germany by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV
Red Bull Air Race had its final event in Europe for 2016
Sparta Prague hockey club has new owner by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV (Foto: HC Sparta Praha)
Hockey team is looking to move forward and hopes for more fan support
Martin Šonka wins gold and silver at European Aerobatic Championships by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV
The Czech pilot took two top awards in Moravská Třebová and is now headed to Lausitzring
Olympic Games to be shown on the Smíchov waterfront by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV (Foto: Prague.eu)
Czechs will have 105 athletes competing for the gold in the Rio Games
Czech Synot Liga 2016/17 Season Preview by Mark Smith - Prague.TV (Foto: www.sparta.cz)
Football is back in Czech Republic - Synot League 2016 / 2017 kicks off this weekend!
Kotlářka to meet Eagles in baseball semis in Prague by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV
Prague 6-based Kotlářka has risen fast in the local baseball leagues
Take a guided tour to Sapa, Prague’s “Little Vietnam”
First Cobbler's Prague Bakery Cup Cake Shop @ PALLADIUM!
Get discounts on speed dating and meet other singles...
Uncover the unique story behind the Staropramen brewery in...
Outdoor Adventure Minigolf
Indoor Playground in Prague 5, Zlicin
Kotlářka Praha - American Baseball
FK Dukla Praha