2007 Holland Series
The 2007 Holland Series featured a rematch of 2006, with Corendon Kinheim facing the Konica Minolta Pioniers. Kinheim again won, in the 4th sweep in Series history. The series MVP was closer Michiel van Kampen, who won one game and saved two others. The series was noted for its horrible defense and lack of fundamentals.
Kinheim, the defending champions, had a dominating 2007 campaign, going 33-7. They were just a half game ahead of DOOR Neptunus despite their impressive record. They scored 309 runs, 58 more than anyone else, and allowed 103, the second-fewest. The team hit .331, led by batting champion and CF Danny Rombley (.392/~.457/.483). SS Roel Koolen (.386/~.534/.534), 3B Vince Rooi (.368/~.511/.521) and RF Dirk van 't Klooster (.360/~.421/.424) also posted impressive averages while last year's MVP, C Tjerk Smeets hit .294/~.388/.531 with 7 homers and 43 RBI to lead the team in slugging, home runs and RBI; Smeets also threw out 14 of 30 baserunners trying to steal against him. David Bergman (12-2, 2.06), Vaughan Harris (9-0, 2.12) and Patrick Beljaards (7-3, 2.89) were the dominant three-man staff while the bullpen featured Duko Jansen (2-1, 1 Sv, 0.78) and Michiel van Kampen (2-0, 8 Sv, 1.05). The team ERA was just 2.26.
Kinheim surprisingly needed all five playoff games to top the Amsterdam Pirates (21-18-1 in the regular season), with Beljaards defeating former Florida Marlins farmhand Kenny Berkenbosch in game five. Rooi scored 3 runs in that 5-1 win.
Konica Minolta Pioniers
The Pioniers had finished third in the regular season at 22-17-1 but then upset DOOR Neptunus in a three-game sweep in the playoffs to earn their ticket to the Series. They hit .260 as a team and scored 183 while allowing 171. Unlike Kinheim, which had 7 .300 hitters, the Pioniers only had three - SS Michael Duursma (.319/~.445/.333), LF-2B Norbert Lokhorst (.308/~.446/.444) and CF Glenn Romney (.325/~.472/.397). Nelson Santander (5-4, 2.25) was the staff ace while Richard Orman, the all-time Hoofdklasse leader in wins by a left-hander, was 4-4 with a 2.84 ERA. Dave Draijer went 3-3 with 8 saves and a 1.29 ERA as the closer. The staff ERA was 3.42.
Game 1 in Pim Mulier Stadium
|Win: Bergman (1-0) Loss: Santander (0-1) Save: van Kampen (1)|
Kinheim started their title defense on a strong note. In the second inning, former minor leaguer Santander plunked fellow former minor leaguer Rooi. Smeets doubled to left and 1B Jeffrey Verbij walked to load the bases. Koolen grounded to SS Duursma, whose error made it 1-0 Kinheim when a double play was easily possible. A wild pitch by Santander and RBI single by Rombley made it 3-0, knocking out Santander after only two innings. 3 hits apiece by Romney and Mike Duursma helped the Pioniers remain in it but they never took the lead. Rooi scored twice and drove in two while Smeets had 3 hits and two RBI for Kinheim.
Game 2 at Hoofddorp - Toolenburg
|Win: van Kampen (1-0) Loss: Draijer (0-1)|
In the longest game in the 21-year-history of the Holland Series, Kinheim rallied to win. Smeets was thrown out at home in the second inning while trying to score on an infield grounder. #9 hitter Jefferson Muzo scored for the Pioniers in the 3rd on a walk, stolen base and a throwing error by Rooi on a Mike Duursma ground ball. The #9 batter for Kinheim, LF Denny Beljaards, helped tie it after coaxing a walk from Richard Orman in the fifth inning. Rombley laid down a bunt single. One out later, van 't Klooster singled home Beljaards to even the score.
Patrick Beljaards ran into trouble in the sixth inning when 3B Marcel Venema singled and DH Jourick Blanco homered to left for a 3-1 Pioniers lead. The upset appeared set when Orman still held that lead with one out in the 9th. DH Wouter Heemskerk singled and Denny Beljaards drew Orman's 5th walk of the day. Closer Dave Draijer relieved the veteran Aruban hurler. Today, Draijer's control was off, though, as he walked Rombley and then hit 2B René Cremer to force in one run. van 't Klooster grounded to 1B Dè Flanegin, who threw home in an attempt to get Denny Beljaards. Flanegin's throw was off, though, leading to yet another Pioniers error as Kinheim tied the score. Kinheim got no closer that inning.
In the bottom of the 9th, reliever Duko Jansen put two men aboard with two outs but escaped the jam.
Verbij opened the 10th with a single and seemingly scored, but the third base umpire (Fred van Groningen Schinkel) called him for interference, negating the score. The Pioniers again got two men on in their half, this time with one out, but Michiel van Kampen relieved and got a double-play ball to keep the game going.
Quincey Bernardus, who had entered as a pinch-runner, walked to start the 13th. Denny Beljaards placed a bunt single to put two men on. Santander relieved Draijer at this point. He continued to hurt his own cause, attempting a pick-off of Bernardus at second, but throwing the ball into center field to let Bernardus move to third. Rombley then launched a sacrifice fly to make it 4-3.
The Pioniers again got two men on but failed to score them and wound up losers by that 4-3 margin.
Rombley, with a 3-for-5 day and the game-winning RBI, had the best offensive game, while van 't Klooster reached base four times.
Game 3 at Pim Mulier Stadium
|Win: Harris (1-0) Loss: Kops (0-1) Save: van Kampen (2)|
Kinheim won their second straight title by completing the sweep. Vaughan Harris allowed just one run in 7 innings. In the first, Rooi singled home René Cremer, with yet another Pioniers miscue playing a role when Norbert Lokhorst erred on a potential double-play grounder from van 't Klooster. In the 4th, the Pioniers continued their amateurish play when 1B Dè Flanegin lost track of the number of outs and rolled the ball back to the pitcher, allowing Verbij to score. van 't Klooster singled in two more to put in well out of reach.
Among the spectators was major league hurler Rick Vanden Hurk.