"E" stands for Edinburg, but it also stands for Eric - the two Roadrunners' veteran Erics - Gonzalez and Montoya.

Both have been playing crucial roles in the latest Roadrunners surge to gain a place in the United League Baseball playoffs.

The season ends August 31, with the playoffs to begin the next day.

The Roadrunners won 12 consecutive games before losing to the Rio Grande Valley WhiteWings by 6-2 Saturday night (August 15). This was five short of their minor league record of 17 consecutive wins in 2006, the first year of the league.

On Monday, at 36-29, they were a half game out of second place, after dropping a game to the Coastal Bend Thunder.

In the meantime, the second place Amarillo Dillas (36-28), who also have been playing exceptional baseball, had other good news by reporting they went over the 100,000 attendance mark on Thursday (August 13).

Although Gonzalez has not been hitting as well as in some years past, his leadership is so very important to keeping the team in shape mentally and physically, according to Field Manager Vince Moore.

The manager said that he was so thankful that Gonzalez, who lives in La Feria, returned to the Roadrunners this season. Moore said he was equally glad to see the return of right handed pitcher Montoya, who is now 5-1 and is back in form, sporting a 2.97 ERA.

Gonzalez, at 30, is the true veteran of Edinburg baseball. The infielder first began playing for the Roadrunners, then in the Central League, in 2001. He played with the club through 2005.

Then, in 2006, the club became a member of the United League Baseball, with Moore returning as manager and with Gonzalez making his return. He has been on the club since then, giving him nine years of Edinburg ball.

Montoya first went to Edinburg in 2004 and has been there since.

Both are former league All-Stars and have been the glue to keep the club together, Moore reports. They also were greatly involved in that record 17 wins, finally stopped by the San Angelo Colts, and also of the latest winning streak.

The streak had moved the Roadrunners up to second from fourth to second, with the Dillas, who had won five in a row, hot behind.

The leading hitter for the Roadrunners is Robert Matlock, who is hitting at a .333 pace.

The Dillas have been moving along at a hot pace too, bolstered by the faithful home crowd. Rox Spradlin was the 100,000th person to pass through the gates and received four season passes for the 2010 season. The defending league champions have had more than 500,000 fans attend the games the past four years.

The Dillas won seven consecutive games before losing to San Angelo Sunday (Aug. 16).

The WhiteWings, who won 7-3 in a season high 16 innings over the Laredo Broncos, on a grand slam home run by Jose Torres, hold down the fourth place spot, but barely, at 29-35.

The Thunder are 28-35. The Broncos, who have lost 11 consecutive games, are 21-43.

Though they have cooled down a bit, the first place San Angelo Colts (43-23) are five and a half games ahead of the Dillas and six ahead of the Roadrunners (36-28).

Bryan Frichter leads the league in hitting percentage, but for the first time he has dropped below .400, at. 391.

He leads in stolen bases with 29.

The playoffs begin on Sept. 1, with the first place club playing at the third place club's location and the second place team playing at the fourth place team's location.

On Sept. 2 and 3 (if necessary) the third place team will play at the first place club's location and the fourth place team will play at the second team's location.

The finals will follow.

Jerry Deal is the director of media relations for United League Baseball. Readers may contact him at (210) 902-6328.