Barely 24 hours after the conclusion of the MINK League championship, the Sedalia Bombers were back on the field.
The Bombers are in Wichita, Kan., playing in the National Baseball Congress World Series. The compressed schedule since falling to the St. Joseph Mustangs in the best-of-three league championship hasn’t hurt them so far. Two games into the series, the Bombers have two wins, having beaten Albuquerque 10-2 on Saturday and Austin 2-1 on Sunday. Monday was a rest day for the team before they face the Derby (Kan.) Twins today.
“It was obviously a disadvantage for us,” said Bombers manager Jud Kindle. “(But) we came out swinging well. We put up an all-around good game in that first one.”
The Bombers enter the NBC World Series with several new faces due to college commitments for several of the players who helped the team claim a division title.
“Once we found out who was going, we had to replace the positions that we lost,” Kindle said. “Those guys moved in and we created some different roles for some players. The lineup looks a little different but it’s the same approach, same philosophy. We’re going to get them over and get them in and hopefully win some more ballgames.”
Even some of the players who have been with the team all summer and finding themselves in new roles. Trey Hair has moved into the lead-off spot in the batting order and has done well there, including a 5 for 5 game Saturday with three doubles.
“That’s what you’re looking for in a lead-off guy, some one who can get on base and run a little bit,” Kindle said. “Trey’s a good all-around player. He was able to make the adjustment pretty easily. His approach is more like a lead-off hitter anyway. He takes a lot of pitches and fights his way through at bats.”
In the 80th version of the NBC World Series, the Bombers will be facing some of the top summer collegiate teams in the country. But two games in, the nerves are gone, replaced by a sense the Bombers belong there.
“Once the games started I think we realized we’re one of the better teams in the country,” Kindle said. “We’re competing against some of the better players in the country and the better teams. It just seems like it’s going to be a dogfight every game. The pitching’s pretty good but at the same time, it’s fun baseball.”
The Bombers are now two wins away from advancing to championship week.