Thursday, January 27, 2011

Drafting for the Future Part #6

Fresno Primetimers

Season #1 and #2

Joel Buck 7th, Pitcher, 0 points

Juan Romero 9th, SS, 0 points

Earl Dodd 44th, Pitcher, 0 points

No picks from the first two seasons signed up to play. Surprising since Camp was a rather solid GM.

Season #3 and #4

Ivan Roth 23rd, SP, 36 points

Trent Duran 37th, Relief, 25 points

Vance Curtis 50th, LR, 26 points

3 picks by camp in the season 3 draft resulted in three awful players. Season 4 he had no picks in the first round.

4 year score: 15/100

Possibly one of the worst drafters ever. However camp kept his team a winner for 13 seasons by doing a lot of other things right.

Hartford Storm

Season #1

Dustan Poole 14th, CF, 72 points

Tim Ducey 36th, Relief, 20 points

I would rather have Rob Ducey then Tim. Dustan Poole however was a pretty good pick at 14. Almost 200 homeruns and over 200 steals in his career.

Season #2

Omar Crespo 15th, SP, 52 points

Crespo won double digits three times in his career but never achieved the greatness that projected for him.

Season #3

Gordon Damon 12th, RF, 67 points

Moments of greatness for Damon. Peak of his career was a 20/20 season when his also drove in 102 runs with a .307 average

Season #4

Juan Hernandez 3rd, RF, 48 points

Never panned out like they hoped, a #3 pick should be a hall of famer. His weakness of being unable to hit lefties kept him from winning an everyday job.

4 year score: 52/100

A few hits but a mostly misses. No one ever overachieved leading to a rather average score.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Hall of Fame Season 18

It’s once again time for the Hall of Fame to announce this year’s inductees. This year’s ballot included several notable players from the early days of this world; however it will be Joey Montgomery that will forever be remembered as the player inducted to the Addicted User HOF in season 18.

Like most awards his selection was somewhat controversial. He seemed to be something of a dark horse with a handful of other players appearing to be shoo-ins. Yet the voters felt that his career numbers were sufficient to surpass his peers and allow him entrance into this very exclusive club.

Montgomery spent 14 seasons in the major’s with time spent in 5 different cities. He enters the Hall wearing the Boise Browncoats cap having spent 7 seasons with them. His talents earned him 8 all star appearances as well as 2 Cy Young awards. Joey was also able to pick up 212 wins with 82 complete games and a 3.96 career ERA.

This year’s ballot seemed to include the names of several future HOF inductees and next years ballot should present an even more difficult selection process for voters as more former stars become eligible for induction.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Drafting for the Future Part #5

Dover Diabolicals
Season #1

Pedro Marrero 10th, CF, 63 points

Worion guided this team for the first three seasons and even won a world series in season #2. Marrero was a bit of a flash in the pain with some nice seasons, 31-103-20-.246. But a low average and lots of K’s cut his career short.

Score: 63/100

Season #2

Dennys Clifton 22nd, RF, 80 points

Clifton was a bit of a beast for a about 6 seasons. He averaged 30 homers and about 90 RBI while batting .280. Not bad for a gold glove quality RF’er.

Score: 80/100

Season #3

Heath Kirwan 27th, P, 0 Points
Sidney Martin 28th, C, 77 points
Christopher Keeler 34th, REL, 0 points

Ouch, Kirwan never signed and Keeler pitcher under 30 innings in the minors. Martin is perhaps the best platoon catcher in the history of baseball. Has only once played more then 100 games but has almost 300 career homers and a great . 311 average.

Score: 26/100

Season #4

Kyle Jackson 25th, UTIL, 23 points
Mark Feliciano 47th, RF, 51 points

Saluki took over as GM and drafted two duds. Jackson is a none factor with 34 major league at bats. Feliciano looked like a solid 20/20 player for a handful of seasons but a bad attitude kept him from reaching his full potential.

Score: 37/100

4 Year Score: 42/100
worion started off pretty strong but some missed signings and failed developmental possibilities drags the overall score down.

Florida Fire Sailfish

Season #1

No Picks

Season #2
Curt Wells 4th, P, 0 Points

Jmercer joined our happy family in season two and was rewarded with the 4th overall pick that season. Too bad Curt Wells wanted a ten million bonus to sign. Luckily he was able to sign international free agent Alex Jose and draft Barry Kirby, Justin Winston in the 2nd and 5th rounds. But still those last two are more lucky then anything.

Score: 0/100

Season #3

Jeff Nixon 4th, LR, 62 points
Vic James 47th, LR, 68 points

In season three mercer grabbed two solid but not spectacular arms. They have combined for about 100 wins and a 5.00 ERA.

Score: 65/100

Season #4

Ivan Gonzalez 16th, CF, 83 points

One of the fastest smoothest fielding players in league history. Gonzalez is on his way to 600+ steals and 2000+ hits for his career.

Score: 83/100

4 year score: 54/100
not bad, but the missing out on Curt Wells when players like Alfonso Tejera, Mark Jones and Clayton Hairston could have been drafted.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Drafting for the Future Part #4

Cleveland Penguins
Season #1

Bey Morris 11th, RF, 87 points
Bruce Hentgen 43rd, 2nd, 68 points

Some guy named highvolta6e played one season of HBD and actually did a solid job drafting. Bey has way over 2000 hits and just over 400 homers in a solid career. Hentgen was a gold glove 2nd baseman and carried a decent stick.

Score: 77/100

Season #2

Stan Allensworth 12th, LF, 56 points
Jon Joseph 18th, RF, 0 points

Season 2 saw another one season owner hutzelgreg finished well under 500 in his only season and drafted two stiffs in the 1st round. Allensworth didn’t reach the majors until rigbystarr took over and started doing some sensible things with the team, by then his career clock was counting down and there wasn’t much left in the tank. Joseph never signed a contract

Score: 29/100

Season #3

Todd Lofton 1st, LR, 64 points
Dewayne Lowery 48th, SP, 0 points
Marc Leach 54th SP, 0 points

Another single season owner, flipdog was blessed with three first round picks to try and save this franchise. Leach and Lowery never made it to the show. Lofton the 1st overall pick was subject to such bad coaching to the start of his career had a 8.84 ERA in AAA before rigby took over. After that he was pretty solid but never as good as he should have been.

Score: 18/100

Season #4

Earl Slaughter 4th, SP, 53 points

The trend continued as escalator took over for one season and dragged this team even further down. His 4th overall selection, Slaughter, was another player poorly used until rigby showed up, a career 75-95 record with a plus 5.00 ERA is not what you want from a 4th pick.

Score: 53/100

4 year score: 41/100
Some solid players were selected but due to the revolving door at the ownership level its hard to say how good these players COULD have been.

Detroit Grass Lakes

Season #1

Bruce Phillips 12th, SP, 78 points

Cj has been the one and only owner of this team so lets see what type of job he did drafting in the early seasons…and did his picks have anything to do with his lone WS title in season 12. Phillips was 8-8 in the WS year but was awesome in the playoffs going 3-1 with a 3.14 ERA. A solid pick at #12 he has a solid 110-85 career record

Score: 78/100

Season #2

Mark Jones 8th, SS, 84 points

Cj traded him away in season 5 so he never played a game in the majors for the team that drafted him. But he has had a great career with gold gloves at 3rd base, 2000+ hits and 300+ homers.

Score: 84/100

Season #3

Jed Riske 11th, RF, 72 points

Riske was a 20/20 guy during the WS season, also batted .383 in the playoffs with 3 homers and 4 steals. He retired with 1000 hits, 150 homers and 100 steals. Not bad.

Score: 72/100

Season #4

Donovan Austin 19th, SP, 85 points
Marshall Golub 43rd, LR, 60 points
Tony Guerrero 56th, REL, 57 points
Reginald Powell 61st, CF, 35 points

Cj scored pretty well again in season 4. Austin won 17 games in the WS year and has a 140-92 lifetime record with a few more good seasons under his belt for sure. Golub has bounced around a little bit before coming back to Detroit to retire. He finished with a solid .500 record. Guerrero never played for Detroit but did manage 20 career wins and 7 saves in just over 400 IP. Powell is still bouncing around AAA. In his best season he stole 46 bases….but has only 3 more after that.

Score: 59/100

4 Year Score: 68/100
Cj was more about quality then quantity. It seems the less picks he is given the better he does. I don’t see any hall of famers but I do see 4 very solid picks.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

AL West Season Preview

Boise Browncoats (90-72, 2nd)

Last season Evan43 did a masterful job with this team as he squeezed every win possible out of his team. Barely scoring more runs than the hurlers allowed should have kept this team around .500, yet somehow they captured 90 wins. Spending 4 seasons stuck in 2nd place Boise has continually frustrated Boise as they haven’t be able to find a way to win the division. Pete Williams, Max Chavez & Alfonso Tejara will be joined by the recently signed Joey Taylor to form a very formidable offensive attack. The loss of Bobby Stephenson will hurt a rather thin pitching staff. The ageless Felipe Cairo is still closing out games with the best around and Dan Gonzales had 13 wins last season, tops amongst the returning pitchers. Everyone is another year older which may help the younger players; however with 15 players over 30 (including 10 position players) age is working against the Browncoats more than for them. Reaching 90 wins again will be a very difficult task which will more than likely leave this team in 2nd but lacking far behind San Jose.

Prediction: 86-76

Portland Seadogs (64-98, 4th)

It’s very tough to have a winning record when you allow your opponents to score 900 runs, it’s impossible to have a winning record if your team can only score 680 runs in response. In the past 13 seasons the Seadogs have finish in the cellar 11 times and it’s been 12 seasons since they’ve been able to end the season above .500. Scoring runs will again be a problem as Wayne Smalley & Alex Granger are the only players that put up decent numbers last season. The pitching staff should be better especially after adding Jolbert Cordero & Bobby Stephenson. Unfortunately a weak defense and anemic offense will leave little margin of error for the hurlers so even strong performances may be wasted by a lack of support. This won’t be the year for a departure from 4th place, however if additional bats and stronger gloves are brought in this team may once again head towards respectability.

Prediction: 68-94

San Jose Giants (103-59, 1st)

Build a well balanced team and your team can win 3 consecutive division titles with back to back 103 win seasons. After flirting with leaving his team, nzballa decided his work was not yet done with the Giants. 5 players hit at least 30 HRs, with 4 of them also driving in 100 runs and they are all back. How good is the pitching? 5 pitchers had at least 14 wins and they were led by Cy Young winner Phil Corino’s 19. In most seasons Sean Brown’s 18 wins and 2.43 ERA would have been enough to win the award but how can you argue with his teammate’s victory. The only shortcoming on this team was the 17 blown saves produced by the bullpen but does it matter when you win over 100 games.

Prediction: 100-62

Vancouver Villians (84-78, 3rd)

The Villians took a small step backwards last season as they fell short of the previous year’s 89 victories. Both the pitching staff and bats had decent years yet they found themselves 19 games behind the behemoths that sit atop the division. Rob Willis (28, 128, .279) is the big bat in this lineup as power was in short supply and wasn’t addressed in the offseason. Speedsters D’Angelo Escobar (112 runs, .317, 43 SB) & Tom Riggs (96 runs, .306, 44 SB) should set the table for Willis and provide plenty of opportunities to get good pitches. Shane Coffman & Wilt Lowry were the only pitchers with 10 or more wins, and Willie Alarcon did another outstanding job in the closer role. Jvburns seems to think he can get more out of his players and has chosen to play the same hand as last season. This is a big gamble and while the pitching staff does look like it can put up better numbers the lack of power will again force his team to play small ball and manufacture runs.

Prediction: 80-82

AL South Season Preview

Florida Fire Sailfish (95-67, 2nd)

The last 11 seasons have been very successful with no worse than a second place finish and a postseason appearance in 9 of them. However the postseason hasn’t gone as well as hoped with jmercer’s team yet to make it to the WS. Could this be the year that changes? David Olivo (41, 120, .296) is back for another season in the Florida sun so the offense has a dynamic leader. Luis Guillen & Lance Kelleher will be counted on to chip in but more help will be needed to regain the top spot in the division. David Acosta led the staff in wins with 16, and Greg Shelley converted 39 of his 43 save opportunities. Bounce back seasons by Al Inglesias & Bob Kelly will also be important for a team with title aspirations. The pitching staff still has a few young players developing however it’s the offense that could use some help this season if the Sailfish want to reach its goals.

Prediction: 92-70

Louisville Sluggers (96-66, 1st)

Three consecutive playoff appearances with two division titles in that time have everyone looking for big things from Louisville. While getting into the ALCS last season was their first, losing in six games left a bitter taste and a hunger for more success. Davidbutler has had all offseason to plan how to make that happen. On offense 4 players had 30 or more HR’s, 3 players drove in more than 100 runs, and 3 players hitting over .300. Clay Charles was probably the best of the bunch with 42, 107, .293 while catching 152 games. Harry Velasquez is the ace and won 23 games with 3.45 ERA. Junior Valdivia won 19 games with a 2.20 ERA in the friendly confines of Petco Park so how he adjusts to a new park will be important as will finding a new closer to replace Sun-Woo Abe. Looks like another dogfight for the division with Florida and the loser may just find themselves at home watching the playoffs.

Prediction: 91-71

Nashville Agents (50-112, 4th)

It’s been 13 seasons since this team has gotten to play in the postseason and the last two seasons have been particularly brutal with each ending in over 110 loses. A new season brings in a new owner and ARodsagent has taken on the task of changing Nashville’s fortunes. The outfield of Vin Escobar, Vincente Guerrero & Otis Boyle is very solid. Matty Cedeno had a great year in the DH slot and Parker Bennett was an inexpensive gamble that put up great numbers in Petco last year. The pitching staff last season was a total disaster with an ERA over 7. While some decent additions were made through the free agent market too many marginal talents remain on the staff to help this team escape the division’s basement. The change of home fields may drop the offenses production a little and help the pitching staff a little but until some significantly arms are added this team will continue to struggle.

Prediction: 55-107

New Orleans Freebeads (87-75, 3rd)

Are the Freebeads ready to make this a 3 team race? After a 1st place finish joshoakley’s team tumbled to last place and 63 wins but the following 2 seasons have produced a jump in victories each season and now this team seems poised for a run at the title. Rookie of the Year, Erubiel Pineda, burst onto the scene last year and promptly bashed 60 HR’s. What can he do for an encore? Hector Gonzalez is back from last season’s injury and if he can regain his previous form he will add another big bat to an already potent lineup. Ivan Alexander & Pokey Hudson were the top starters last season and Guillermo Sivilla may be ready to take over the closer role. New Orlean’s season will go as far as the pitching staff will take them, which is unfortunate because the offense looks capable of holding it’s own against any opponent.

Prediction: 91-71

AL East Season Preview

New York Torrones (87-75, 2nd)

In the last 7 seasons New York has been to the playoffs 5 times, yet last season saw their 3 yr run a top the division come to an end. Tanner Magnante (39, 130, .334) is still the face of the team and he did get help from a pair of 30 HR hitters, Neifi Espinoza & Danny Fox. Abraham Orie (14-2, 2.97) & BC Garland (32 sv, 2.65) had great years but for torrone’s gang to make a serious run at the division title Glendon Green (9-15, 5.28) & Hipolito Martin (9-11, 3.95) will need to have strong seasons. The offense got a boost with the addition of Jordan Mahaffey & Woody Hoiles. Pitching on the other hand may become a concern if they can’t hold other teams in check or need to continually win slugfests.

Prediction: 89-73

Norfolk Navigators (71-91, 3rd)

Consecutive 71-91 seasons have the Navigators hoping this is the season they can climb out of the AL East basement. It appears that Spring Training will be very important for cspring as he decides who will fill the 9 opens roster spots on his ML team. Ahmed Ramirez is the lone returning position player who put up big numbers. The pitching staff is equally in trouble as Alan Lowell (9 wins) leads the returning players in wins and the top returning player in the bullpen, William Ross, will be starting the season on the DL. This looks like a team ready for a major step backwards as it rebuilds its ML roster.

Prediction: 64-98

Scranton Office Workers (90-72, 1st)

Hacker7’s first move was to relocate his team to Scranton and it seemed to work out well as he was able to take the division title. Dennis Newfield (30 HR, 95, .333), Ronn Hall (38, 116, .281) & Bailey Baptist (37, 94, .258) carry potent bats. Another ageless veteran, PJ Stanton (13-6, 4.77) and Vin Guevara (6-2, 18 sv, 2.21) lead a pretty ordinary pitching staff. To win another division title the Office Workers will need the pitching staff to find a way to duplicate last season’s success. If the hurlers struggle it may turn into a long season.

Prediction: 82-80

Washinton D.C. Abnormals (71-91, 3rd)

The Abnormals start their 4th season with diabeticrock at the controls. It’s been 8 seasons since their last playoff appearance and the fans are becoming very restless. Dolf Titan (46, 104, .283) & Al Castillo (38, 99, .260) were the leading hitters. The loss of Torey Gonzalez was a big blow to a team with only two other players reaching double digits in victories. Big seasons from Andres Cabrera & Olmedo Molina would help compensate but someone needs to step up to take on the 200 innings Gonzalez would have thrown. With some pieces in place Washington has hope for a better future but this won’t be the year they make a run at 1st place.

Prediction: 73-89

AL North Season Preview

Dover Diabolicals (74-88, 4th)

No team wants to go from a 100 win season and a division crown to a last place team yet that is exactly what happened last year. Bdcelli takes over a struggling franchise that is in desperate need of a stable ownership situation. It appears spending money on players won’t be a concern as the team payroll has exceeded the $100M mark. Ramon Wang & free agent Mac Morris were acquired this offseason in an attempt to bolster the pitching staff. The offensive shortcomings of last season were also addressed as free agents: Trevor Vina, Jiggs Craddock, Donald Huang & Miguel Palacios, as was Derek Lloyd who came over in a trade. It’s yet to be seen how these mores will work out but you must give the new owner credit for at least attempting to do everything possible to get into the playoff race.

Prediction: 85-77

Iowa City Barnstormers (78-84, 2nd)

Only twice in team history has this team finished above .500 and the only playoff appearance occurred 3 seasons ago. The question then becomes has sccrplyr16 made the right moves to allow this team to compete and do it on a regular basis? Ronnie Patrick is still developing yet appears ready to show he can lead the staff. In the pen, Phil Bannister did a solid job as the closer. Dom Costcarart, Koyie Williams & Vincente Rios can mash with the best. However the defense seems a little shaky at several positions so it looks like another year hovering around .500 for the Barnstormers.

Prediction: 75-87

Minnesota Twinkies (75-87, 3rd)

As if being named after a snack cake wasn’t bad enough, this team has languished at the bottom of the division for the last 4 seasons. Fans are hoping that last year was a precursor to a bigger jump this season. The Twinkies are hoping that youngsters Hideki Zhang & Lorenzo Guillen will provide some quality innings for the pitching staff. Sluggers Gerry Allen (48, 134, .362) & Billy Corey (33, 115, .332) are back for another season and they come with several young players looking for a chance to show what they can do. Hitting should not be a problem; however brentnet will most likely find his team’s success will be held back by a pitching staff not quite strong enough to help get them to the playoffs.

Prediction: 82-80

Toronto Toros (85-77, 1st)

Finishing only 8 games over .500 allowed the Toros to return to the playoffs after a 5 yr absence and in a surprising finish defeated Durham to win the franchises 3rd WS trophy. Steve Wells (33, 99, .317) was the leading hitter last season but 22 yr old phenom Rich White (30, 81, .285) seems poised to pass him as the offensive leader. On the hill 4 pitchers reached double digits in victories yet it was a collective effort and no one really stood out for this unit. Youngsters like Connie Gosling, Martin Saito, Pedro Lugo and recently acquired Lloyd Keefe will be called on to step up for goldenboy69’s team. Can this team repeat? Yes, they were a longshot to even get in the WS so why would this season offer them any bigger challenge. Even with the changes in roles and players on the pitching staff it looks like their effectiveness or lack thereof will determine Toronto’s fate.

Prediction: 84-78

Friday, January 14, 2011

Drafting for the Future Part #3

Charlotte Jordans

Season #1

Jack Minor Utility, 15th 47 points
Matthew Roberts 3rd, 39th, 42 points
Benny Beltran CF, 50th, 78 points

Gerald007 was the GM for season 1 and did a passable job with the draft. Never a good sign when your first player drafted is classified as a Utility player, but that’s what Jack Minor was, a speedy jack of all trades. Roberts was a solid 4th OF/PH for a few seasons but never really found his home in the majors. The best of the bunch was Beltran who was a solid CF’er that looks to have ended his career with almost 300 steals.

Score: 56/100

Season #2
Ed Zeile Relief, 23rd, 76 points

Season two saw another new owner, GDfan, he drafted a solid young relief pitcher that three times in his career had more then 29 saves. A very solid arm out of the pen he also had three seasons of more then 100 innings. Solid picks of Che-Bang Lee 2nd round (1500+ hits) and Mike Anderson 3rd round ( 1400 hits, 240 steals) were also had by gdfan.

Score: 76/100

Season #3

Bingo Dixon RF, 31st, 65 points
Trent Schmidt 3rd, 33rd 71 points

Finally lovemlb joined the team and put his stamp on them. His first season of drafting was actually pretty successful. Dixon was a good but not great right fielder. Over 1000 career hits and 150 homers. Schmidt was slightly flashier and enjoyed a longer career. Peak season saw him hit 32 homers and come up 3 short of 100 RBI.

Score: 68/100

Season #4

Bruce Munoz SP, 44th, 53 points
Donatello Matthews SP, 57th, 44 points

In his 2nd season lovemlb started to really work on screwing this team up. Munoz had some solid seasons but a career ERA of almost 6 is not good. Matthews was even worse, despite pitching over 1500 innings in the majors he couldn’t get his ERA below 7.10 for his career.

Score: 48/100

4 year Score: 60/100
a barely passing grade, if not for marginal stars like Zeile and Beltran this would have been a sub 50 score.

Chicago Cosby Sweaters

Season #1

Buddy Henley LR, 31st, 58 points

Hawk27 ran this franchise for its first 7 seasons and did a pretty solid job on the field winning over 85 games in all but his last season with the team. Henley was his first pick and was good at the best of times and awful at the worst.
Score: 58/100

Season #2

Hawk went big on free agents and did not get a pick until the 3rd round.

Season #3
Mel Haywood 1st, 29th 85 points

Late first round seems to be the place to get big hitting 1st basemen. Haywood seems to be getting better with age. At 33 he has just over 2000 career hits and 375 homers. While not a lock at the HOF…yet. He will if he keeps putting up numbers like last seasons 35-117-.353

Score: 85/100

Season #4

Carlos Colon CF, 20th, 61 points

After a strong season #15 Colon went to play ball in Japan. Back in Chicago now he is hoping to play himself back into a job at the majors. Great fielder and baserunner.

Score 61/100

4 Year Score: 68/100
hawk27 did pretty good with his late picks. I would have liked to have seen what he could have done with this team as they started to fall in the standings.

Season 18 Preview NL West

Fresno Primetimers (92-70, 3rd)

A team that finished with the 4th best ERA in Addicted Users and scored 150 more runs than they allowed would seem like a sure bet to make the playoffs. That wasn’t the case in the tough NL west. Closer Ryan Politte is the leader of the pitching staff and finished with 45 saves in 50 chances. Terrence Cooper, Freddy Franco & Ernest Payton carry the big bats for the Fresno but will need some more contributions from their friends this season. With 17 players 30 or older this team’s window of opportunity is closing fast. Primetime17 will need to start making tough decisions soon on when to start tearing this team apart and if they fall out of contention early it may start this year.

Prediction: 90-72

Honolulu LuauDawgs (96-66, 1st)

10 more victories last season than the previous year propelled the LuauDawgs from last place to 1st. Yet there continued lack of playoff success haunts this team as all but one of their playoff appearances have ended in the 1st round, as last years did. $20M man Tony Blair leads the 2nd ranked pitching staff with 18 wins and a 3.12 ERA. He’ll need to at least do the same until Malcolm Sandberg returns from the DL. Omar Estrada put up MVP numbers (37, 135, .312) and will need to do it again. With some key contributors leaving this may be a bit of transition season and may hinge on how rockydawg fills out his roster.

Prediction: 94-68

Salem Senators (93-69, 2nd)

The pitching rich NL west included the San Diego franchise. In a move geared to help lower the frustration of the hitters, grissom97 has moved the team to Salem. This may be a wise move or it could cause be a disaster if the pitching staff doesn't adjust quickly to their new surroundings. In an attempt to off set any problems that may arise from the move several roster changes have been made. RF Morris Grace was added to provide another long ball hitter, while the veteran arms of Victor Colome, Vincente Domingo & Louis Henley were added to compensate for the more hitter friendly dimensions in Salem. A move to a new park brings pitfalls as well as opportunities and the wheeling & dealing done in the offseason had better work or it will be a long season for a team that finished 3 games out last season and hopes to improve on that.

Prediction: 90-72

Scottsdale Hohokams (92-70, 3rd)

Last years team was well balanced with both the pitching staff and offense ranking high. Unfortunately this didn’t translate into more than a good record and higher expectations for this season as the Hohokams missed the playoffs. New owner gaheel84 decided that a in state move to the more hitter friendly park in Scottsdale would be just what this franchise needed. Sluggers Clarence Levis, Lou Beamon & Jumbo Neruda should find their new home very much to their liking. On the other hand 15 game winners, Bruce Phillips & Hulk Morris, and closer Tom Holmes may become homesick rather quickly. Again moving to a new ballpark can be a little tricky and while this will create more offense the adverse affect to the pitching staff may be more than anticipated.

Prediction: 89-73

Season 18 Preview NL South

Charlotte Jordans (57-105, 4th)

This team’s fans haven't had anything to cheer about in a long time and last year was no exception. The new owner, richelle, felt like a move to Charlotte would help cut ties with this franchises longtime failures. However building with youth and an eye to the future will not make things get better quickly. Roy Gordon & Ahmad Gabriel are building blocks that can be counted on now as well as in the future. Rule 5 pickup George Governale also shows some promise that can help a rebuilding team. The pitching staff appears to be in total disarray. Unfortunately there isn’t much more help and this season looks like another struggle with only the hope of not finishing in the cellar as a realistic goal.

Prediction: 55-107

Jacksonville Fake Empires (83-79, 1st)

6 consecutive division titles in St Louis wasn’t enough to keep this team’s ownership in place and to get a fresh start they’ve moved the team to Jacksonville. The starting rotation that included Cela, Coles & Martin was strong and deserved better support than they received last season. Tim Parker will again anchor the bullpen so shutting the door on opponents will be in very capable hands. Jody Lara & Louie Rigdon lead an offense that finished with a team batting avg ranked 25th in the majors. Improved production from C, 1B & RF would go a long way to helping this team go further in the playoffs but this year’s success may be determined by how well the pitching staff does in their new home.

Prediction: 86-76

San Juan Tax Evaders (69-93, 2nd)

It’s been 6 yrs since kevmax’s team has won the division and with only one finish above .500 in that time the Tax Evaders fans are neither happy nor showing up to the park. Last season opponents scored 100 more runs than were pushed across by San Juan. Starters Chance Perez & Pat Lawrence had decent seasons, as did relievers Mario Gaston & Cody Melton. However they will need to put up better numbers this season if this team hopes to make the .500 mark. Mel Haywood is a hitting machine that racked up MVP like numbers; unfortunately his teammates didn’t offer much support. Without more offensive firepower it will be left up to the hurlers to limit their opponent’s runs as was the case last season. A repeat of last season’s success is the most likely scenario for this coming season.

Prediction: 70-92

Santa Fe Let’s Play (69-93, 2rd)

Playing in a hitter’s paradise has position players drooling when coming to Santa Fe and the home team did score over 800 runs last season. Unfortunately pitchers have nightmares about taking the mound in this launching pad and with over 1000 runs allowed bbwinnow will need to find a way to control the other teams offense if he has any playoff aspirations. At the plate Babe Denny, Clem Scott and newly acquired Mike Woodard should power the offense. Chad Scott has a big bat but lacks the defensive skills to play in the NL and is more suited to a DH role in the AL. On the mound Gregg Beard did better than his record would indicate. As would be expected from a team that allowed so many runs last season there is little else toeing the rubber to mention in a positive way.

Prediction: 67-95

Season 18 Preview NL East

Boston Elite Ducks (108-54, 1st)

In the last four seasons this franchise has won the division 3 times and the WS title twice. However in a surprise move a new owner has taken over, moved the team and it will have to be seen if can maintain the level of excellence of the last few seasons. A typical team would be in trouble if it allowed 800 runs, unless of course you're able to push 1000 runs across the plate like this team. Craig Velandia (58, 140, .360) is a masher but Miguel Palacios & Pedro Canseco hit 30 HR and drove in 100 RBI’s so he isn’t alone. On the mound 20 game winner Clarence Wood and lights out closer Willie Martinez (38 saves/38 opps) are back. Unfortunately success also brings bigger paychecks so not everyone from last year will be back and more difficult decisions will need to be made in the future. A fourth division title should be in the cards but it may not be as easy this year.

Prediction: 99-63

Chicago Cosby Sweaters (55-107, 4th)

It’s been a long time since this team has had the players to compete for a playoff spot and fans will need to wait a while longer as new owner pieo has asked for some patience as he rebuilds through the farm system. This may be the last season for Adam Sadler & Ivan Oliveras with the team. While both were able to smack 30 HR’s last season, players over 30 usually aren’t around long on rebuilding teams. With a team ERA of 5.62, no pitcher with more than 9 wins and four players with 10 or more loses there really isn’t a lot positive to say about the hurlers. A last place finish is guaranteed and last seasons 55 wins doesn’t look like it will be an easy level to reach.

Prediction: 48-114

Hartford Storm (95-67, 2nd)

This team owned the division before their reign came to an end 3 seasons ago. Still dangerous, it has been frustrated by the juggernaut that resided in Durham and tbarden hopes this is the year they can regain the top slot. Big years from hurlers Malcolm Rowe & Wilfredo Encarnacion would go a long way to helping the team reach that goal. On the offensive side Eric Murphy (46, 126, .330), Lorenzo Gabriel (41, 122, .321) & Germany Bradley (44, 120, .261) supply much of the fire power. The effectiveness of the pitching staff will determine how far this team will go and if Boston slips at all they might be ready to take advantage.

Prediction: 98-64

Philadelphia Meoples (90-72, 3rd)

This is the 4th season that the team will be under the control of s_gammon, unfortunately Philly is in a division with 2 powerhouse teams. So the question is have improvements been made to allow them to bang heads with the division leaders. Manny Wainhouse (18 wins) & A.J Freeman (17 wins) led the rotation but it was felt that more help was needed so Vince Livingstone and Diego Garza were added through free agency. Donald Matsuzaka (43, 134) wields the big bat but really needs more help and that wasn't addressed this off season. The pitching staff should make this team capable of staying with Hartford & Boston, and if the offense can increase its production then there may be a 3 team battle for the division title.

Prediction: 94-68

Season 18 Preview NL North

Buffalo Wings (94-68, 1st )

After a 2 yr stay in the cellar, drutes has rebuilt his team and it is the 2 time reigning division champ. The offense starts with Gerardo Espinoza (1B), who hit 46 HR and drove in 109 runs. But this isn’t a one man show as Carlos Arias & Albert Perkins can also swing the bat. Buffalo dipped into the free agent market to pick up Archie Aldridge, it’s yet to be determined where he’ll play but a $12M player won’t be sitting on the bench. Pedro Alarcon anchors the rotation and sets the tone for a solid pitching staff that had a team ERA of 4.09 last season. The Wings division foes will be hard pressed to stop this team from adding to their string of division crowns.

Prediction: 92-70

Burlington Coat Factories (62-100, 4th)

Last season’s record was not surprising for a team that allowed almost 200 more runs than they scored. Rebuilding this team will not happen over night even for a veteran owner like kingbraden. Steve Hoffman is a talented young pitcher to build a team around however the anemic offensive attack that will support him will most likely waste some good outings. Braden Hughes & Homer Plesac are the highest paid players on the team and will need to dramatically increase their production to justify their salaries. It looks like another long season in Burlington and avoiding another 100 loss season would be a major accomplishment.

Prediction: 56-106

Cleveland Penquins (69-93, 2nd)

Back to back 1st place finishes have been followed by two 2nd place finishes and fewer wins each season. The question is has rigbystarr done enough to once again get this franchise headed back in the right direction and challenge Buffalo for the division title. The pitching was solid for the most part and with a little more offensive support would have kept this team from dropping below .500. The loss of Jolbert Cordero leaves this team looking for an ace. Part time starters Red Maxwell (12 wins) & Daniel Poppell (11 wins) were the only pitchers to hit double digits in wins. Joey Taylor will be missed behind the plate as will his 26 HR. Ty Leon and Guillermo Andujar are the deep threats but will need to up their production if this team is to take a step forward instead of another step back. The current major league roster suggests this will be a long season by the lake.

Prediction: 65-97

Detroit Grass Lakes (68-94, 3rd)

When your team scores 150 less runs than their opponents it is hard to expect anything other than a sub .500 record and that’s exactly what cjperritt’s club did. The pitching and defense are ok and with a little improvement could make a big jump. The offense on the other hand needs some major help. Everett Bochtler, Harry Torcato & Raymond Steele are solid starters that can eat innings. J.R. Gray & F.P. Koskie are the offensive stars with Koskie now 30 the question is, will he still be around when this team is ready to compete. Detroit may be able to move up to 2nd in this division but that will still be a long way from the division leaders.

Prediction: 72-90

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Drafting for the Future part #2

Buffalo Wings
Season # 1

Pat Long 24th, CF, 80 points
The only GM of this team has been drutes, and he did a solid job with his only 1st round pick in season #1. Pat Long is a solid defender and a good stick man who stand s a good chance at reaching at least 2500 hits. Not much power or speed but always finding a way to get on base is his main asset.
Score: 80/100
Season #2

No draft picks, no score.
Season # 3
Ramiro Guevara 10th, RF, 93 points
Wow, Guevara is just 8 homers shy of 600. Once hit 74 homers in a season with almost 200 RBI. He has won a Gold Glove, ROY, multiple MVPS and a All-Star game MVP award. All this out of a guy that nine teams passed on.
Score: 93
Season #4

Michael McDonald 26th , C, 65 points
Chili Ricarrdi 48th , SS, 48 points
Another two quality picks by drutes. Mcdonald looked like he was going to be a star for a few seasons but settled on being a very solid platoon catcher. Ricarrdi also had two very strong seasons but then fell back and was nothing more then a utility player.
Score: 57/100
4 year Score: 76/100
Drutes set the bar very high with his early drafting and also set his team up for success. As you can see they were one of the more solid teams right up till season 13.

Burlington Coat Factories
Season # 1

Barry McCall 21st, 2nd, 50 points
Not sure what happened here, kingbraden made a solid pick with Mccall but never seemed to give him the shot he deserved. Put up monster numbers at AAA for 6 straight seasons before getting a call. Maybe not a true second baseman but i feel he could have helped sooner. They also drafted hard hitting first baseman Barry McCall 75th overall and has over 350 career homers.
Score: 50/100
Season #2

Leonardo Mackowiak 31st, 1st, 85 points
2nd last pick of the official 1st round and King grabbed himself a stud 1st baseman. He has since retired but finished his career with 455 homers and a solid .280 avg.
Score: 85-100
Season #3

Norm Bunch 18th, CF, 52 points
Manny Carter 30th, SS, 67 points
No stars here but king was able to grab two solid players. Carter was a gold glover at SS and Bunch a decent BU CF.
Score: 60-100
Season #4

B.J. Curtis 24th, SP, 62 points
Mo Webster 46th, RF, 47 points
Alberto Azocar 59th, 2nd, 0 points
Harry Bryne 62nd, SP, 70 points
All in all another solid draft for king, grabbed three solid players all after 24th overall. Curtis and Bryne would be a solid 3-4 punch for any rotations and Webster was an ideal 4th Ofer
Score: 45-100
4 year Score: 64
, king has done a solid job considering how late he usally drafts, never once drafting in the top ten.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Drafting for the Future Part #1

Boise Browncoats
Season #1

Mateo Rosado 27th, SS, 67 points
Ugueth Ramirez 34th , LR, 30 points
Craig Cunningham 49th , LR, 0 points

This draft was handled by Mgreenwell, not sure what happened to him but he was one of my favorite people to compete against. He was smart, crafty and fair. This was not a great draft for him however. Cunningham never made the show and Ramirez barely had time for the coffee to cool down in his stops at the bigs. Rosado was a pretty solid pick at 27th. A versatile MIF he won a gold glove at 2nd base and two World Series rings. Not much a stick man however.

Score: 33/100 not great but considering they didn’t draft until 27th it’s not all that bad.

Season #2
Alfonso Tejera 5th, LF, 96 Points

Almost a perfect draft pick, Alfonso was the only selection they had in the 1st round and he has not disappointed. He has put up several MVP type seasons and his career is shaping up into a sure in for the hall of fame. The fact that he wasn’t first overall is almost mind boggling. A crafty pick by greenwell who also selected Stevie Bonilla 118th overall, that is 4000 hits between those two.

Score: 96/100

Season #3
Gene Oquist 15th , 1st, 79 points
Lee Helton 42nd, SU, 78 points

Another solid draft class from mgreenwell. Oquist is a gold glove quality 1st baseman that has had a good career and the numbers to back it up. Helton while no star has been a ML pitcher for 12 seasons now, once an all-star and a World Series winner. Neither is going to the hall of fame but both are the types of players quality organizations can build on.

Score: 78/100

Season #4

Lee Helton 30th, 2nd, 84 points

A real steal at 30th overall, on pace for 2000 career hits, 300 homers and 400 steals. Players like this are what made Salem and now Boise so tough to play against. Multi talented players who played way better then most of us ever thought.

Score: 84/100

Four Year Score: 73/100 73 may not seem like much but I would compare it to picking an all-star player with every pick in the first round. A team that does that is going to be tough to beat.

Boston EliteDucks
Season #1

Mandy Patterson 20th , 2nd, 55 points
Albert Pulido 29th, CF, 81 points
Rich Speaker 47th, LR, 48 points

A pretty good job of drafting by rprsn who only spent one season in addicted users. Speaker was a useable major league pitcher for a time. Patterson has played every position in the bigs except pitcher and catcher. While not a great hitter or runner his usefulness has seen him stick around long enough to get almost 1500 career hits. The real gem is Pulido, a 29th pick that has smashed 449 homers in his career.

Score: 61/100

Season #2
T.J. Black 14th, SU, 0 points

Ouch this one hurts, wolvie14 came in during season 2 and did a solid job with the big league squad but kind of dropped the ball with the drafting. No players he drafted ever made it to the majors. A 14th overall pick usually nets you some solid production but not this year.

Score: 0/100

Season #3

Quilvio Estrada 24th, 2nd, 0 Points

Once again a new owner and a failed draft. Kingdad0 came in and made his presence felt by not singing ANY of his draft picks. This sort of crap would set this team up nicely for several years of crappiness.

Score: 0/100

Season #4

Dann Bates 7th, RF, 0 Points
Joel Wall 36th, SS. 37 points

In his 2nd year of a five year run of stupidity kingdad finally managed to sign a player. Joel Wall was a back up SS at best. He was however much better the Dann Bates who never signed at all.

Score: 19/100

Four Year Score: 20/100
, yeah that seems about right.