The Pacific Rim College League (PRCL) regular season has come to an end after 54 games, and the division leaders who will advance to the playoffs have been finally decided.
With no wildcards, only the top team in each of the five-team divisions would qualify for the postseason, which starts tomorrow. Those teams are:
- Japan Division: Toyko College Veterans (32-22)
- Korea Division: Seoul U Sushi (32-22)
- ANZ Division: Melbourne U Abos (31-24)
- Oceana Division: Fiji College Red Wolves (34-20)
For the opening round of the playoffs the Japan-Korea Conference finalists, Tokyo College and Seoul U, will face each other in a best-of-three series. Tokyo has the advantage, having won four of the six regular season games against Seoul, despite struggling to solve Sushi’s big bat Takaaki Takahashi (RF), who was .400 with 4 HR and 6 RBI against Tokyo.
But, Takahashi was injured late in the season, fracturing his ankle in a game against Kobe, leaving Seoul U without their top run producer, and giving Tokyo a decided advantage.
In the Australasia-Oceania Conference, Fiji College hosts the Melbourne U Abos for that series. The teams had split their six regular season games, but Fiji was 2nd in the conference in run production, while Melbourne sat at lackluster 5th.
Melbourne’s Yoshi Isono (RF), who played well against Fiji, hitting .545 with 2 doubles and 3 HR’s, scoring 9 runs, is out with a herniated disc and will be unavailable for the playoffs. If Fiji can steer clear of rotation ace Chae-pong Yuen, who was 2-0 with an ERA of 0.55 against the Red Wolves, they will prevail.