Tag Archive for: USA


LAREDO, TX- Youngstown’s Astro Falcons were within one strike several times of facing Chinese-Tapei for the 2019 Palomino World Series Championship.  For the second time in three days, Puerto Rico rallied in the seventh to take down Youngstown.

Ricky Havrilla was outstanding through five innings allowing just two hits and one walk and Youngstown had a 4-0 lead.  Single tallies in the first, second, third, and sixth innings gave them what seemed a firm grip on defeating Puerto Rico for the second straight night.  But suddenly the strike zone eluded Havrilla, and after three walks in the sixth, ironically his total for the entire summer in Youngstown’s Class B League, he gave up a two-run double cutting the score to 4-2.  Justin Miknis got out of the sixth inning jam and had Puerto Rico down to their last strike on several occasions, but after several foul balls, an infield single trickled just far enough into left field allowing the winning run to score as Puerto Rico put up three runs in the seventh.

Offensively, Justin Miknis had two hits as did Lucas Gulczinski, one of which was a double.  Chase Franken had an RBI triple, his third three-bagger of the tournament. And Brandon Gelpi hit a towering solo home run that gave Youngstown their biggest lead.

It was a heartbreaking ending to a four-day testament to guts and Youngstown grit.  From the outset, Youngstown had the toughest bracket challenge of any of the ten teams in Laredo.  Winning four games over the four days, Don Pletcher’s team did Y-town proud.


*Contributed by Mark Franken


It’s been a journey in 2019 for Logan Bell, but one that he’s learned from and grown from to become an Ace for seemingly any team he joins.  Lisbon’s standout pitcher rewrote the record books at his now alma mater, and while that was enough to drive him- the chip on his 6’3 200-pound frame comes from the adversity he’s faced.

Bell will tell you that he’s not the naturally gifted type of athlete, he’s worked (and outworked) his opponents to earn everything he’s been afforded to this point.  The early morning workouts, the late-night study sessions to become a Division 1 recruit and eventually landing at the University of Akron to help rebuild their baseball program.

A fourth-generation Lisbon Blue Devil athlete, Bell showed Astro Falcon Manager Don Pletcher all he needed to see both on the mound and in the dugout.  Bell is one of the rare pitchers that show up in support of his teammates on the days he isn’t pitching.  His demeanor, leadership, and commitment to his team has not only solidified the spot on this ultra-talented roster but has earned him the reputation of being one of the best teammates some have ever had.

“Logan’s a sponge, he’s always asking questions and picking the brains of coaches and players between starts,” said Astro Manager Don Pletcher.  “Logan wants the ball, and he’s a gamer but what impresses me is how he’s constantly showing up and asking how he can support the team in any capacity, a manager’s dream,” added Pletcher.

Bell finished the summer session a perfect 9-0 for the Astro Falcons and was able to live out his dream of opening up the Palomino World Series and facing international competition while blanking Mexico.

Our Mark Franken caught up with Logan Bell after an incredible 2-hitter against Mexico in Laredo in this special Player Profile presented by R.L. Craig Inc. : Answering The Bell



LAREDO, TX-  Youngstown’s Astro Falcons jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first inning and never looked back en route to a 10-0 victory over Mazatlan, Mexico here Friday morning.  The game was shortened to six innings due to the mercy rule being in effect. It was the first game of the Palomino World Series, a double-elimination tournament that includes teams from North America, Europe, and Asia.  

Logan Bell was masterful, allowing just two hits over the six innings while striking out six and walking none.  He allowed just two base runners to reach scoring position as the Mexican team struggled to make solid contact throughout.  


The Astro offense struck right away in the bottom of the first.  Chase Franken and Ricky Havrilla walked setting the table for Burke Camper who had his first of three hits on the day.  Lucas Gulczinski’s sacrifice fly plated camper to give Youngstown a 3-0 lead. Havrilla then drove in Franken with a two-out RBI single in the second.  Camper then blew the game open in the fifth with a two-run blast over the wall in left scoring Franken who had tripled. The Astro Falcons ended it in the sixth with four more runs.  Braeden O’Shaughnessy and Connor Miller singled before that Camper kid ended it with his third hit and fourth run batted in. Franken scored four runs from the leadoff spot. Bryan Rivas and Leonardo Benites had singles for Mexico.

Youngstown will face the West Zone champion Santa Clara tomorrow at 11:30 a.m. CST.  Win or lose they will play a second game later in the day. You can catch all the action at YSNlive.com as we will live stream Youngstown throughout the tournament.


*Story Contributed by Mark Franken