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Baseball district-by-district preview for Oakland County WITH PHOTO GALLERY

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The 2017 baseball playoffs begin on Tuesday, May 30 with the semifinals and finals to be played Saturday, June 3. Here is an early look at how the district brackets could shape up for Oakland County’s schools:

Division 1

District 27

(at Romeo)

Tuesday’s game: Romeo vs. Rochester

Saturday’s semifinals: Romeo/Rochester vs. Utica Eisenhower; Rochester Adams vs. Stoney Creek

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: A loaded district featuring the OAA Red division co-champion in Rochester, plus the second place finishers in the MAC Red (Eisenhower) and MAC White (Romeo) divisions makes this difficult for all teams involved. Only one can reach the final as they’re on the same half of the bracket.

Prediction: Rochester’s pitching depth and veteran hitters help the Falcons overcome a very difficult path to the final, where they’ll prevail over a city rival and return to the regional round.

District 25

(at Troy Athens)

Saturday’s semifinals: Berkley vs. Troy Athens; Royal Oak vs. Warren Mott

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: Rivals in the OAA Blue, Berkley took two of three games against Athens during the regular season, while Royal Oak finished second in the OAA Gold and Mott was last in the MAC Blue.

Prediction: Already with a boost from getting to host, Athens will find a way to win and advance, beating Royal Oak in the final.

District 28

(at Lake Orion)

Saturday’s semifinals: Waterford Mott vs. Clarkston; Lake Orion vs. Oxford

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: With three quality OAA Red Division teams, plus a Mott team that struggled all year, Clarkston appears to have the easiest path, though it struggled against Lake Orion and Oxford in the regular season.

Prediction: Lake Orion’s one-two starting pitching punch proves to be the advantage needed to defeat two tough opponents and capture a district crown.

District 26

(at Troy)

Tuesday’s game: Bloomfield Hills vs. Birmingham Groves

Saturday’s semifinals: Bloomfield Hills/Groves vs. Birmingham Brother Rice; Troy vs. Birmingham Seaholm

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: There are no subpar teams whatsoever in this loaded district. Tuesday’s game is likely one of the better openers in the state, with OAA White champion Groves and OAA Blue co-champion Bloomfield Hills squaring off. The winner will get a rested Brother Rice team fresh off a Catholic League title. Seaholm and Troy’s matchup should be no less entertaining.

Prediction: Having won the district a year ago and brought nearly the whole team back, Groves will find a way to emerge through three tough contests.

District 31

(at Northville)

Tuesday’s game: Walled Lake Western vs. Novi Detroit Catholic Central

Saturday’s semifinals: WL Western/Catholic Central vs. Novi; South Lyon vs. Northville

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: While there are no pushovers in this district, Catholic Central and Northville appear a couple rungs up the ladder from the rest of the pack.

Prediction: KLAA Central winner Northville takes advantage of being at home and not having to play a pre-district game on Tuesday to emerge over Catholic Central in the final.

District 29

(at Walled Lake Central)

Tuesday’s game: Walled Lake Central vs. West Bloomfield

Saturday’s semifinals: WL Central/West Bloomfield vs. Waterford Kettering; Orchard Lake St. Mary’s vs. Walled Lake Northern

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: Expect whichever team wins Tuesday’s pre-district game to advance to the finals on Saturday afternoon. St. Mary’s is competing in Division 1 this season, which makes for an intriguing matchup with KLAA North champion Walled Lake Northern.

Prediction: Walled Lake Northern repeats as a district champion, knocking off city rival Walled Lake Central in the title game.

District 32

(at Lakeland)

Tuesday’s game: Holly vs. Milford

Saturday’s semifinals: Holly/Milford vs. Hartland; Fenton vs. Lakeland

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: Battle-tested Milford should advance past Holly on Tuesday, setting up a clash between KLAA West Division foes. The real title game may be the second semifinal, however, when Lakeland and Fenton meet.

Prediction: Lakeland finds its way past Flint Metro League champion Fenton and has just enough left in the tank to come out on top in the district final too.

District 30

(at Farmington)

Saturday’s semifinals: Farmington vs. Farmington Hills Harrison; North Farmington vs. Livonia Stevenson

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: Livonia Stevenson emerged from this same grouping of teams a year ago and will be favored to do so again following a second place finish in the KLAA Central. Farmington is the best bet of the three cross-town OAA White schools.

Prediction: Stevenson repeats as district champion after a narrow win over Farmington in the final.

District 18

(at Detroit U-D Jesuit)

Tuesday’s game: Southfield A&T vs. Oak Park

Saturday’s semifinals: Southfield A&T/Oak Park vs. Detroit Renaissance; Detroit U-D Jesuit vs. Redford Thurston

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: In its inaugural baseball season, Southfield A&T took home the OAA Gold Division title, though the host, U-D Jesuit, played against tougher Catholic League competition despite a less impressive record.

Prediction: U-D Jesuit repeats as district champion, taking the first step toward matching last season’s deep playoff run to the quarterfinals.

Division 2

District 61

(at Madison Heights Lamphere)

Saturday’s semifinals: Birmingham Detroit Country Day vs. Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood; Clawson vs. Madison Heights Lamphere

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: Country Day reached the Division 2 quarterfinals a year ago, losing an extra-inning heartbreaker. Clawson is the only one of the other three teams to finish above .500 in the regular season.

Prediction: Featuring multiple Division 1 college signees, Country Day should not encounter too much difficulty in advancing to the regional round.

District 62

(at Auburn Hills Avondale)

Tuesday’s game: Pontiac Notre Dame Prep vs. Armada

Saturday’s semifinals: Notre Dame Prep/Armada vs. Richmond; Auburn Hills Avondale vs. Macomb Lutheran North

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: With Orchard Lake St. Mary’s competing in Division 1 this year, this district grouping looks a bit different, opening the door of opportunity for Notre Dame Prep or Avondale. The Macomb County schools may stand in the way, however.

Prediction: Winner of the BWAC title, Armada makes its long bus rides worthwhile, topping Avondale in the district title game.

District 60

(at Hazel Park)

Tuesday’s game: Center Line vs. Ferndale

Saturday’s semifinals: Center Line/Ferndale vs. Warren Fitzgerald; Hazel Park vs. Warren Lincoln

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: Comprised of a bunch of teams that finished with sub-.500 records toward the bottom of their respective division standings, this district is anybody’s guess.

Prediction: Needing to win three games to duplicate last year’s district title, Center Line falters to allow Fitzgerald to emerge as champion here.

Division 3

District 87

(at Rochester Hills Lutheran Northwest)

Saturday’s semifinals: Clinton Township Clintondale vs. Rochester Hills Lutheran Northwest; Madison Heights Madison vs. Madison Heights Bishop Foley

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: It’s difficult to envision any team coming close to stopping Bishop Foley, which is fresh off a CHSL C-D division title game win.

Prediction: Bishop Foley moves on to the regional round, and with Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett competing in Division 1 this year, the Ventures’ run through the postseason could be a long one.

Division 4

District 123

(at Southfield Christian)

Tuesday’s games: Clarkston Everest Collegiate vs. Novi Franklin Road Christian; Waterford Our Lady of the Lakes vs. Auburn Hills Oakland Christian

Saturday’s semifinals: Everest Collegiate/Franklin Road vs. Southfield Christian; Our Lady of the Lakes/Oakland Christian vs. West Bloomfield Frankel Jewish Academy

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: Franklin Road Christian and Oakland Christian were each district champs last year at separate sites, but are mashed together this time. Each will need to survive a Tuesday pre-district game, but a meeting in the finals will not be much of a surprise.

Prediction: Novi Franklin Road Christian edges Oakland Christian in the final game Saturday.

District 142

(at Allen Park Inter-City Baptist)

Tuesday’s game: Royal Oak Shrine vs. Detroit Davis Aerospace

Saturday’s semifinals: Detroit Southeastern vs. Allen Park Inter-City Baptist; Shrine/Aerospace vs. Birmingham Roeper

Final: 30 minutes after second semifinal

Overview: Royal Oak Shrine put together a solid season competing against good Catholic League teams, which should make the Knights battle-tested this time of year.

Prediction: Shrine tops Inter-City Baptist in the district final.

Last Updated: 5/28/2017 10:00:53 AM EST

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