Cebu and Dumaguete hold twice-to-beat advantages in the semifinals of Baseball Philippines Series 9, but hope to finish the job in one take as they go for a finals berths on Sunday.
Second-seeded Dumaguete enters the field at 9 a.m. in the first game against the Manila Sharks, while top-ranked Cebu goes up against Alabang at 1 p.m. at the Rizal ballpark.
Cebu and Dumaguete wound up with similar 11-4 win-loss records after the elimination round.
The Sharks, winner of the last three tournaments, ended the eliminations at third place with a 9-6 record. They finished their elimination campaign with a 3-2 win over no less than the top-ranked Cebu Dolphins, showing that they won’t give up the crown that easy.
“We want to establish our philosophy of pitching and defense in the playoffs,” said Manila coach Jhoel Palanog.
The Cebu Dolphins occupied the top spot of the standings for the most part of the eliminations but, for some reason, can’t seem to put away the Tigers that easy during their three encounters this season.
Cebu swept the Alabang Tigers in the eliminations, but its winning margin averaged only a shade over a run per contest including a 7-6 victory over the Tigers in 13 innings last May 13. The Dolphins also won the other two tight matches (9-7 last June 13 and 9-8 last May 16).