The 2018 American Legion baseball season is underway, and as usual, Wisconsin is home to plenty of good teams. Who's the best of the best? This is the third edition of our Legion power rankings of the season. The top 10 teams are ranked regardless of Class, and the top five teams in all Classes can be found at the bottom of the page. Rankings are chosen by Wisconsin Baseball Central staff.
Ahnapee (8-2), Hartford (9-4), Hartland (6-3), Kewaunee County (13-4), Marshfield (17-8), Onalaska (20-8), Prairie du Chien (13-4), Rhinelander (12-1 entering Sunday), River Falls (11-4), Superior (15-5), Viroqua (22-9), Waupun (11-2), Wisconsin Rapids (15-4)
It was a tough week for the Black Sox, who lost both of their games to Antigo and D.C. Everest to drop to 18-10 on the season. They have a chance to bounce back in a big way this week, facing Wisconsin Rapids (honorable mention this week) on Monday and hosting a tournament over the weekend after a few more games. Their toughest matchups of the tourney figure to be against No. 4 Fond du Lac and Madison.
Post 53 put together a nice 6-1 week to improve to 16-6 this season. They went 4-0 at their home River City Classic tournament to win the title, beating Marshfield (honorable mention this week) along the way. They went 2-1 against Marshfield last week, as the two played a doubleheader early in the week as well. Their only games this week will be at a tournament in Plover. They will face No. 4 Fond du Lac in their first game there.
Holmen cracks the top 10 this week and is the top-ranked Class AA team. Post 284, the defending state champion, is 19-6 and on an eight-game win streak. They won a tournament in Merrill last weekend, winning all four of their games by at least six runs. They’ve played a tough schedule this year, with games against the likes of No. 5 Chippewa Falls, No. 9 Eau Claire and No. 10 Plover. It gets a little tougher this weekend: They face Marshfield (honorable mention this week) in a Saturday doubleheader.
Post 38 is 15-5 after going 3-1 last week. They fell to No. 4 Fond du Lac, but defeated No. 2 Oshkosh. They also picked up wins over Hortonville and crosstown foe Appleton DoubleDays. Four of their five losses are against ranked teams. They generally take care of business against teams they’re expected to beat. They face Neenah on Tuesday before hosting a tournament over the weekend.
Marinette is 17-5 this season following a 4-1 week. They swept two games from Sheboygan, beat Menominee (Mich.), and split a doubleheader with Wausau (10-13). No. 7 Appleton had a big week, but got handled by Marinette early in the year, keeping Marinette just ahead of them in the rankings. Marinette’s matchups this week include games against Green Bay Southwest and the Green Bay Shockers (7-8).
Chippewa Falls didn’t play any games last week, and slipped a little in the rankings as a result. They’re 13-1 this year, and will try to get back on the field this week. They have a doubleheader against Altoona (9-10) on Tuesday and head to the Gopher Classic in Minnesota over the weekend. They open that tournament, which is the largest Legion baseball tournament in the country, with a matchup against Excelsior, ranked No. 7 in Minnesota.
Fondy had arguably the best week of anyone last week. They went 4-0 to improve to 17-5 on the summer, beating two ranked teams along the way. They pounded No. 7 Appleton Post 38 on Thursday as Mitchell Waechter pitched a no-hitter for a 13-0 win. Then they handled No. 2 Oshkosh 10-4 on Friday. They also swept Kimberly in a Saturday doubleheader. They’ve got a busy week ahead, highlighted by a trip to Plover for a tournament over the weekend. They face No. 9 Eau Claire and No. 10 Plover there.
Beloit had a 3-0 week to run its record to 14-3-1 this summer. They defeated Hartland (honorable mention this week), Milton and Lake Geneva. They remain stuck behind No. 2 Oshkosh in the rankings due to their 0-2 record against them. They face Union Grove and Lake Geneva this week before heading to Fort Atkinson for a tournament.
It was a rough week for the formerly top-ranked team. They entered it undefeated, but went 2-3 in five games. They lost to No. 4 Fond du Lac, No. 7 Appleton Post 38 and Madison. That brings their record to 19-3 entering this week. The losses to Fond du Lac and Appleton means they’re 1-1 against both of those teams this year. They have games against Neenah, Menasha and Ashwaubenon coming up.
Unlike some of the other top teams, De Pere took care of business last week. They won their only game, defeating Appleton DoubleDays 2-0 to improve to 17-4 on the season. They’re off to Minnesota this weekend to play in the Gopher Classic, and currently look like the best-equipped team from Wisconsin to make a deep run in the massive tournament, which draws some of the top teams from around the Midwest. That much is evident in some of De Pere’s matchups. They face Eden Prairie, ranked fifth in Minnesota, and Napoleon, Ohio, which hosts the Great Lakes Regional this year.
1. De Pere (17-4)
2. Oshkosh (19-3)
3. Beloit (14-3-1)
4. Fond du Lac (17-5)
5. Chippewa Falls (13-1)
1. Holmen (19-6)
2. Onalaska (20-8)
3. River Falls (11-4)
4. Kewaunee County (13-4)
5. Rhinelander (12-1 entering Sunday)
1. Viroqua (22-9)
2. Waupun (11-2)
3. Prairie du Chien (13-4)
4. Black River Falls (13-2 as of July 5)
5. Ripon (8-4)