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From the outset, the paths to the DODDS-Europe baseball and softball European championship tournaments have been sloppy with mud-caked cleats and rained-out doubleheaders. Regardless, its travelers can now glimpse the end of the road.

With two weeks remaining in the regular season, six teams – three apiece in baseball and softball – have navigated the treachery without a loss. Here’s a look at those teams’ hopes for entering the postseason unbeaten:

BaseballNaples (12-0)

The Italy-based Wildcats have been largely sheltered from the weather that has roiled their northern counterparts.

Signature games: Established Italian dominance March 29 and 30 with two wins apiece over Aviano and Vicenza.

Biggest remaining threat: Not applicable; the Wildcats completed their season May 4.

Patch (4-0)

The three-time defending Division I European champions look well-equipped to extend their streak.

Signature games: Blanked a strong Ansbach team by consecutive 10-0 scores in a swirling snowstorm March 23.

Biggest remaining threat: Regional and divisional rival Heidelberg visits Thursday.

Ramstein (8-0)

The dominant Royals haven’t been seriously challenged since an 8-4 win over Lakenheath in their March 22 season opener.

Signature games: Swept rival Kaiserslautern on April 26 by scores of 16-0 and 18-1.

Biggest remaining threat: Travels to dangerous defending Division II champion SHAPE on Saturday.

SoftballPatch (4-0)

The Panthers haven’t seen much diamond time, but the innings they’ve played have been sparkling.

Signature games: Shut down a fledgling threat from Wiesbaden in an 18-2 and 20-0 sweep April 20.

Biggest remaining threat: Visits Vilseck to round out the regular season May 18.

Ramstein (10-0)

The Royals have scored at least 12 runs per game while maintaining a season-long shutout.

Signature games: Opponents have yet to muster a meaningful challenge to the reigning champions.

Biggest remaining threat: AFNORTH, with a solid 6-2 record, will take the field’s final regular-season shot at the Royals on May 18

Vilseck (6-0)

The Falcons tend to yield a few runs per game, but their explosive offense more than compensates.

Signature games: Outlasted Wiesbaden 16-11 on May 4 to complete a sweep and remain undefeated.

Biggest remaining threat: Hosts Patch on May 18 in both teams’ regular-season finales.

broome.gregory@stripes.com

Twitter: @broomestripes


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