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2018 DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF PREVIEW - DUCKS VS. PATRIOTS

Fourth consecutive season that Long Island battles Somerset for Liberty Division crown
 

(Central Islip, N.Y., Sept. 18, 2018) – The Atlantic League playoffs are about to begin, and for the fourth consecutive season and 13th time in franchise history, the Long Island Ducks will be playing postseason baseball. The Ducks, who clinched a playoff berth as the Second Half Liberty Division champions this past Saturday, will face the First Half Liberty Division champion Somerset Patriots in the best-of-five Liberty Division Championship Series. The winner of the series will move on to the Atlantic League Championship Series, where they will meet the winner of the Freedom Division Championship Series that pits the first and second half champion Sugar Land Skeeters against the wild card winning Lancaster Barnstormers.

SERIES SCHEDULE

Game One Wed., September 19 Patriots at Ducks 6:35 p.m. Bethpage Ballpark
Game Two Thurs., September 20 Patriots at Ducks 6:35 p.m. Bethpage Ballpark
Game Three Fri., September 21 Ducks at Patriots 7:05 p.m. TD Bank Ballpark
Game Four* Sat., September 22 Ducks at Patriots 7:05 p.m. TD Bank Ballpark
Game Five* Sun., September 23 Ducks at Patriots 5:05 p.m. TD Bank Ballpark
* - If Necessary        

HEAD-TO-HEAD HISTORY

2018 marks the fifth time the Ducks and Patriots will face off in the postseason. Their first-ever meeting came in the 2013 Atlantic League Championship Series when Somerset was still a member of the Freedom Division. Long Island won the first two games at home before going on to win the series in five games, claiming their third Atlantic League championship and second in a row. The sides faced again in the 2015 Liberty Division Championship Series, with the teams splitting the first two games on Long Island before the Patriots overcame a 2-1 series deficit for a 3-2 series victory. In 2016, the two teams met in the Liberty Division Championship Series once again, with the Patriots hosting the first two games at TD Bank Ballpark. Somerset claimed both, but Long Island rallied back with three consecutive wins at home, outscoring Somerset 14-2 to win the Liberty Division championship. Last season, the Ducks claimed the Liberty Division crown for the second straight year after rallying back from a game one loss at home to win the next three games, the latter two of which were in Somerset. The Ducks have an 11-8 advantage in the all-time playoff series with the Patriots. They have won seven of nine meetings at Bethpage Ballpark, while the Patriots have taken six of 10 matchups at TD Bank Ballpark.

During the regular season, the Ducks and Patriots have met a total of 363 times since the Ducks entered the Atlantic League in 2000. The Ducks hold a 182-181 lead in the tightly-contested series, and they have a 96-88 edge on Long Island while the Patriots maintain an 93-86 advantage in New Jersey. The 2018 series was split at nine games apiece, with the Ducks winning the final six games between the two teams. Long Island went 4-5 in Central Islip and won five of the nine games played in Bridgewater. The two teams played nine games against each other in each half, with the Patriots going 6-3 in the first half, and the Ducks taking six of the nine games in the second half. This series will be the first meeting between the teams since the Ducks swept the Patriots at TD Bank Ballpark August 6-8.

ROSTERS

Below are the active Divisional Playoff rosters for the Long Island Ducks and Somerset Patriots (players listed alphabetically by position):

LONG ISLAND DUCKS       SOMERSET PATRIOTS
PITCHERS   PITCHERS
Fernando Abad (LHP)   Dustin Antolin (RHP)
Lorenzo Barcelo (RHP)   Mike Antonini (LHP)
Jose Cuas (RHP)   Duane Below (LHP)
Jake Fisher (LHP)   Chase Huchingson (LHP)
Taylor Grover (RHP)   Ryan Kelly (RHP)
Matt Larkins (RHP)   Logan Kensing (RHP)
Brett Marshall (RHP)   David Kubiak (RHP)
Dennis O'Grady (RHP)   Vince Molesky (RHP)
Logan Ondrusek (RHP)   Dustin Molleken (RHP)
Carlos Pimentel (RHP)   Stephen Perakslis (RHP)
Francisco Rodriguez (RHP)   Rick Teasley (LHP)
Hector Silvestre (LHP)   Ryan Webb (RHP)
Ashur Tolliver (LHP)   Zech Zinicola (RHP)
     
CATCHERS   CATCHERS
Ramon Cabrera   Yovan Gonzalez
Dioner Navarro   John Nester
     
INFIELDERS   INFIELDERS
Taylor Ard   Nate Coronado
Dan Lyons   Mike Fransoso
Cody Puckett   Craig Massey
Jordany Valdespin   Alfredo Rodriguez
David Washington   Jose Sermo
    Justin Trapp
     
OUTFIELDERS   OUTFIELDERS
Daniel Fields   Jayce Boyd
Lew Ford   Endy Chavez
Robert Garcia   Ramon Flores
Rubi Silva   Justin Pacchioli
Miles Williams    
     
COACHES   COACHES
Kevin Baez - Manager   Brett Jodie - Manager
John Brownell - Pitching Coach   Glen Barker - Hitting/3rd Base Coach
Lew Ford - Hitting Coach   Jon Hunton - Pitching Coach
Bud Harreleson - Coach   Fox Beyer - First Base Coach
    Alfonso Reda - Bullpen Coach

PITCHING MATCHUPS

The following are the probable pitching matchups for the Liberty Division Championship Series (statistics provided are 2018 records and ERA in Atlantic League play):

GAME ONE
Patriots: RHP Vince Molesky (7-2, 2.65 ERA) vs. Ducks: RHP Matt Larkins (7-5, 4.55 ERA) 

GAME TWO
Patriots: RHP Stephen Perakslis (2-1, 3.35 ERA) vs. Ducks: LHP Jake Fisher (8-7, 3.91 ERA)

GAME THREE
Ducks: RHP Brett Marshall (6-9, 4.56 ERA) vs. Patriots: RHP David Kubiak (8-3, 3.40 ERA) OR LHP Rick Teasley (4-5, 3.60 ERA)

GAME FOUR
Ducks: RHP Lorenzo Barcelo (2-1, 4.20 ERA) vs.  Patriots: LHP Rick Teasley (4-5, 3.60 ERA) OR RHP David Kubiak (8-3, 3.40 ERA)

GAME FIVE
Ducks: RHP Dennis O’Grady (6-4, 3.81 ERA) vs. Patriots: TBA

FOLLOW ALONG

Those unable to make it out to the ballpark can follow all the action on the Long Island Ducks Broadcast Network. Live streaming HD video and audio will be available via BoxCast on the Ducks’ official Facebook page, YouTube channel and at LIDucks.com. Fans can follow a pitch-by-pitch account of each playoff game as well via Pointstreak’s Game Live application by CLICKING HERE.

TICKET LINKS

Tickets to all Ducks home postseason games are available by visiting the Bethpage Ballpark box office, calling (631) 940-TIXX or CLICKING HERE.

Those wishing to attend Games Three, Four and Five at TD Bank Ballpark can purchase tickets by calling (908) 252-0700 or visiting www.somersetpatriots.com.

The Long Island Ducks are members of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball and play their home games at Bethpage Ballpark. For further information, call (631) 940-DUCK or visit www.liducks.com.

About the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB)

The Atlantic League has been a leader in professional baseball and a gateway to Major League Baseball since 1998. Over 38 million fans have attended Atlantic League games and more than 900 players and 50 managers and coaches have joined MLB organizations directly from the ALPB. The Atlantic League emphasizes winning baseball games, showcasing the talent of top-caliber players and offering affordable family entertainment.

For more information, please visit www.atlanticleague.com.
 

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