Heidenheim Heideköpfe

From BR Bullpen

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Heidenheim Heideköpfe is a team in Bundesliga. They have participated in the top league in Germany since 2001 and won titles in 2009, 2015, 2017 and 2019-2021. In 2008, former major leaguer Mike Hartley became their head coach and led them to a divisional title; Hartley became the first former big leaguer to play in the Bundesliga. In 2009, he was be joined on the club by another ex-MLB'er, Dusty Bergman. Bergman joined with Simon Gühring, Peter Dankerl, Markus Winkler and Ray Stokes in leading the team to its first pennant. The next year, they won Silver at the 2010 European Cup, the first German team to win a Medal in the 47-year history of the European Cup.

They won a second championship in 2015, led by Aaron Dunsmore, Jamie McOwen, Sascha Lutz, Tyler Lockwood, Gühring and two-way threat Johannes Krumm. Their third title came in 2017 with Clayton Freimuth, Gühring, Lutz, Mitch Nilsson, Justin Erasmus and Gary Owens playing key roles. Other players included Ricky Torres. They won the 2019 CEB Cup with five straight shutouts including fine pitching from Mike Bolsenbroek, Enorbel Márquez, Luke Sommer, Marcel Giraud and Logan Grigsby and excellent offense from Dunsmore, Philip Schulz, Owens and Ludwig Glaser. They kept up their run of Bundesliga titles in alternate years with a title in '19; 44-year-old Márquez, Mike Bolsenbroek and RJ Hively led the staff (Torres was again a staff member).

Heidenheim repeated as champs in 2020, with Owens, Gühring, Lutz and Shawn Larry pacing the offense in a COVID-19-shortened season and Bolsenbroek anchoring the staff again. They pulled off a three-peat with another title in 2021. The cast was familiar with Larry, Owens and Glaser leading the offense (Glaser and Bolsenbroek winning their 8th titles) and Bolsenbroek leading the regular-season staff while Márquez was finals MVP.