Andy Etchebarren has been through this a couple times before.
So, he didn't need much time to figure out what to tell his team following Sunday's 2-0 win over Somerset at Sovereign Bank Stadium.
Combined with Lancaster defeating Southern Maryland, 8-3, York clinched a berth into the Atlantic League playoffs for the third straight year.
"We're one-third of the way to where we want to be," Etchebarren said to his team inside the clubhouse. "We got a good ball club here. Some days guys don't do so well. But other guys step up. That's the sign of a good ball club."
With that, players popped the corks on their bottles of champagne and let the celebration begin.
The Revs (75-59 overall, 39-25 second half) still have a chance to win the Atlantic League Freedom Division second-half crown, since they trail Lancaster (86-48, 41-23) by just two games with each having six regular-season games left. But even if that doesn't happen, York will have already won the wild-card playoff berth and will meet up with the Barnstormers in the first round no matter what happens.
"That's the way it should be. We're the two best teams," Etchebarren said to reporters in his office. "The thing I don't like about it is we're both coming out of the same division, but the truth of the matter is we should be playing each other for the championship. But the way it's set up that's the way it is until they change it."
The celebration capped off an eventful Fan Appreciation Day in front of 5,281 fans in York's final regular-season home game. Etchebarren, who is retiring at the end of the season, was honored on the field before the game by Hall of Famer Brooks Robinson -- both were given standing ovations from the crowd. The team dedicated a plaque to Etchebarren that will hang in the concourse at the stadium. Revs' president and general manager Eric Menzer also said the club will retire Etchebarren's No. 8 jersey. It will become the third jersey number to be retired by the club, joining Jackie Robinson's No. 42 and Brooks Robinson's No. 5.
Game: Revs' right-hander Corey Thurman held Somerset (63-71, 28-36) to no runs on five hits in 72/3 innings of work, striking out five and walking none. In the process, Thurman (14-3) broke his own club record of 13 wins he set a year ago and moved into a four-way tie with three Lancaster starters for the league lead in wins.
Salomon Manriquez drove in Johan Limonta from third with sacrifice fly to right in the fourth inning. Revs' slugger Chris Nowak put York up by two runs with a lead-off solo homer in the sixth. He extended his league lead in homers to 34, which marks the most homers by an Atlantic League player since 2005.
Next game: The Revs will fly out of Baltimore-Washington International airport Monday morning to Sugar Land, where they'll play the first of a six-game series starting Tuesday. The series will close out the regular season for both teams. Etchebarren said he will not travel to Sugar Land, citing that he's "worn out" and wants to rest his back. Pitching coach Mark Mason will manage the series in his absence. Mason will take over as the Revs' manager on a permanent basis next season.
Game notes: Etchebarren said infielder Liu Rodriguez (elbow) is day-to-day while outfielder Michael Hernandez (groin) might miss an extended period of time. ... York set a four-game attendance mark this weekend with a total of 21,757 fans. ... The Revs set a single-season club record for wins (74) this weekend. The Revs also need just two more wins to tie the club record for most wins in a half (41). ... A total of $1,950 was raised for the Catholic Harvest Food Pantry courtesy of Dale E. Anstine this season as part of the Cannonball Charlie promotion. ... Susquehanna Bank donated $11,175 to the Crispus Attucks Association through the Revs' Strikeout for Straight A's promotion this year. ... A total of $60,000 was raised for York YMCA through various efforts between the team and YMCA this year.
-- Reach John Walk at firstname.lastname@example.org.