With three games remaining and tiebreaker scenarios galore, Ridgefield (24-21) heads to Walla Walla (14-31) for the final series of the regular season. All three games — Tuesday 6:35, Wednesday 6:35, Thursday 7:05 — will be streamed live, audio-only, on RidgefieldRaptors.com.
Corvallis has clinched the second half title and also won the first half, so the other playoff berth goes to the Southern Division team with the next best record from the whole summer.
The Raptors are 24-21, tied with both Portland and Bend in overall record. Portland has the tiebreaker over Ridgefield, while Ridgefield has the tiebreaker over Bend, and Bend has the tiebreaker over Portland. In a three-team tie, the Raptors would get in.
Cowlitz is one game behind at 23-22; in a four-team tie, Ridgefield would get in. In any three-team tie involving Ridgefield and Bend, Ridgefield makes it in, but in a tie between Ridgefield, Cowlitz and Portland, Cowlitz would make it in. In a tie between Cowlitz, Bend and Portland, Bend takes the spot.
If the Raptors make the playoffs, they would open at home against Corvallis on August 14 and then travel to Corvallis for the remainder of the best-of-3 series. The WCL Championship Series begins August 18.
Ridgefield is coming off a close loss to Corvallis, with the Knights coming back from a 3-run deficit in the 6th inning to race ahead for the 7-3 win to take the sweep.
Although that does mean Ridgefield hasn’t beaten Corvallis yet this year, there’s a chance that loss will actually help Ridgefield get in the playoffs. The Knights won to stay four games ahead of Bend in the second half standing, thereby winning the second half. Bend plays Corvallis in the final series, so if Bend was only three games behind in the second half, the Elks could sweep the Knights and take the automatic berth. Ridgefield would miss the playoffs in that case even if the Raptors swept the Sweets. Instead, Ridgefield’s loss means the playoff berth is decided by overall record, in which Ridgefield is tied with Bend. With the three-team tiebreaker in hand, Ridgefield would make the playoffs if Bend, Portland and Ridgefield all win the same number of games in their respective final series.
The Raptors have played Walla Walla once already this season, sweeping the Sweets at home. That included a 17-2 win on July 30 that set the record for most runs scored in a game at the RORC and largest margin of victory in a Raptors game.
Ridgefield has played in Walla Walla once before, back in August of 2019. The Raptors were chasing the Sweets for a playoff berth at the time and took two of three games at Borleske Stadium, but Walla Walla ultimately claimed the playoff berth.
If Ridgefield can make it into the playoffs, it would be the first entry for the Raptors. Ridgefield went 27-27 back in the team’s inaugural year and finished three games behind Walla Walla. Right now, the Sweets are on an 11-game losing streak including that sweep at the hands of the Raptors.