Friday, November 5, 2010

Season 12 Ballot

This is one man's ballot and reasoning for Season 12.

AL MVP Candidates:
Wilt James
Richie Grieve
Victor Trinidad
Ismael Leon
Mike Garcia
This choice was relatively easy. James is the choice here. He has the highest HR, RBI, AVG, and OPS among the candidates. He also plays RF (3 of 5 candidates play 1B, 2 of 5 play RF) so there is more defensive value as well (Fielding % of 1.00). He also plays for a 1st place team.

NL MVP Candidates:
Russ Bryant
Bobby Page
Placido Benitez
Moises Berroa
Albert Ponson
The NL may have been tougher, if only slightly. First we'll eliminate Berroa from consideration because he plays on the same team as Benitez. Berroa had a monster season, and should he ever want to come to Chicago he'd be welcomed with open arms. Next we eliminate Bobby Page for the same reason, Russ Bryant is the true MVP candidate from Honolulu. That leaves three 1B, making the defensive argument irrelevant in this voters mind. Realistically you have to get rid of Ponson, making it come down to only Bryant and Benitez.
Benitez put up record breaking RBI numbers and in winning the Triple Crown. Bryant put up some damn fine numbers and played for a 1st place team with the best record in the league.
Thats not quite enough to sway the vote, i'm going with Benitez, since he had the team within a game of the Wildcard.

AL Cy Young Candidates:
Joaquin Samuel
Bailey Jordan
Sammy Molina
David Hughes
Abraham Munro
First the eliminations, sorry Samuel but you don't even get considered. Despite the 54 Saves and 1.97 ERA (which we'd LOVE to have in Chicago), there are too many other SP that won 20 and pitched over 200 to make up the difference.
The remaining 4 are all very similar. Jordan has the best ERA, Molina the best K/9 rate, Hughes the most wins and IP and tied for best WHIP and OAV, Munro tied for the best WHIP and OAV.
In the end I'm going with Hughes and here's why: all of the above mentioned items coupled with pitching for a Division winner in the MOST BRUTAL division out there, as well as having a target on his back for being the most dominant SP this world has ever seen. He gets my vote.
Side Note: The Gangsters were close to acquiring him this past offseason, but in the end the Pisces smartly held on to him.

NL Cy Young Candidates:
Glen Hill
Manny Kerr
Ozzie Sauveur
Yeico Martin
Bill Strong
First the eliminations, B.Strong and Y. Martin. B.Strong just doesn't have the numbers to compete with the rest of the field. Martin pitched quite well, but is essentially a 6 inning pitcher, and only pitched past the 7th once all year and he only has 15 wins.
I'm also going to eliminate Sauveur. His ERA, WHIP, and OAV are all higher then Kerr (who pitched for the best team in the NL).
This is the toughest vote yet. Hill pitched 85 innnings, which for a closer is unheard of, and he did it flawlessly. In the end I tend to value SP more so I'm going with Kerr. Maybe this is why my bullpens always are atrocious?

AL ROY Candidates:
James Nakajima
Sergio Upshaw
Steve Perez
Christian Ross
Pat Bong
Eliminations - Upshaw , Perez, &Ross. Upshaw because he was not in fact a rookie. Check his stats from Season 11, he had 33 saves last year and better numbers overall, otherwise he would've got my vote. Ross played more games at 1B then 2B, and those aren't 1B numbers. Perez was a long reliever who got a lot of Vulture wins and an ERA of 4.47.
That leaves Nakajima and Bong. The defensive angle is moot since both are DH's (Nakajima is listed at 1B but did not play an inning all year).
It comes down to whether you value Power or OBP. Bong has the edge in HRs (38-22) but Nakajima has the edge in RBI's, OBP, and OPS. My vote is Nakajima.

NL ROY Candidates:
Taylor McGee
Enos Ramirez
Ignacio Alomar
Preston Pittinger
Gabe Valdes
The only quick eliminations are Alomar because his #'s pale to everyone elses and Valdes because he only pitched 28 innings.
I'll list Pro's and Cons for the remaining 3
McGee - Pros has the highest OPS, AVG, and SB among the candidates and plays a premium position well at 2B. CONS - Did not play a full season, came up in the middle of the year.
Ramirez - Pros Played all year in CF for a division winning club. A position he played for the first time after being approached by new management. Cons - Counting #'s are not the best of all the candidates
Pittinger - Pros has the most HR's and RBI's among the candidates and was a Rule 5 draftee. Cons - played in relative obscurity in Salem with no pressure.
In the end a case could be built for any of the 3. I'm going with Ramirez because he played a full year for a division winner in CF, and because he's one of my players.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Ranking the NL at 121 Games

We decided to rank them in reverse order this week.

#16 -
Salem Squirrel Monkeys (NL)
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

- Record 30-91 - We all know why they are in last (abandoned owner), but make no mistake this team is greatly improved since kidsid took over. There is still lots of talent there and they could impact some races this year before competing next year. Will they improve their ranking before the end of the year? I envision it happening.

Jacksonville Junk Yard Dogs (NL)
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- Record 55-66 - While they have improved since last year, not enough to get them out of the cellar. Will a 4th straight 4th place finish give them hope of the playoffs next year? Sure as long as you subscribe to the "Due" theory.

- Record 55-66 - This franchise continuously lacks offensive firepower, and a move out of St Louis is rumored. Playing in a new home won't help that woeful road record however.

- Record 56-65 - After making the playoffs (via wildcard) last year they opened up and spent on some free agents. Initial reviews looked good, but they came back to earth. They have been focusing on the future in recent deals, and rumors persist that a new owner will be taking over next season.

- Record 59-62 - Playing in the NL's weakest division (NL South) the good news is that they are 1 of 5 teams currently over 600 runs scored. The bad news is that they've given up more runs (615) then anyone not located in Salem.

New Britain
New Britain Fighting Beer Drinkers (NL)
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- Record 57-64 - The offense is lead by young C Jaime Allen. Unfortunately you can't blame the pitching staff's woes on him. The propensity to give up the long ball (172 HRs allowed and counting) is definitely a problem.

Sacramento Terrible Two's (NL)
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- Record 62-59 - Yes they play in a division with Honolulu and Fresno, but they have given up 596 runs, 3rd worst in the NL. Thats not a typical Sacramento team. They have been trying to rectify that problem as they are actively shopping for pitching.

- Record 58-63 - The team has played better lately, as they have moved out of the cellar in the NL North. They won't make the playoffs this year but they are improving.

- Record 58-63 - We knew the Hooch wouldn't be down long. They didn't rebuild as much as they reloaded. While an eye is definitely on next season for management, the boys still have an outside shot at the Wild Card.

New Orleans
New Orleans Hot Fives (NL)
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- Record 63-58 - Led by MVP candidate Gerald Pan this team Hot Five is taking full advantage of a weak division and should easily win the division.

Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City Ampersands (NL)
View Hardball Dynasty Profile

- Record 64-57 - This high octane offense is lead by MVP favorite Placido Benitez , who is threatening to challenge the RBI record (187) with 154 RBI's currently. They are 8 games back of Buffalo, but currently only 1 game out of the Wild Card.

- Record 70-51 - They gambled when they traded away their leadoff hitter Harold Murphy to St Louis in exchange for Jose Costilla. The thinking in this trade was that it would allow them to have 4 starters that can go deep into games, thus reducing the need for middle relief, which is their BIGGEST problem this year. The closer Junior Chen acquired earlier this year has blown 7 saves and looked awful for a stretch but is pitching better of late. If the offense slumps, and there are signs of it happening, then they could free fall right on out of the playoffs. Former #1 overall pick
Aaron Jenkins
Age: 20B/T: L/L
Born: Herman, PA
Position(s): CF/1B/OF/DH
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has been called up to give the team another lefty bat and to give some breathers to the OF.

Toledo Holy Fargin' Schnicks (NL)
jose can u c
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- Record 65-56 - The early season injuries have certainly jeopardized their playoff aspirations. They currently only hold a 1 game lead in the Wild Card and are 4 games back of Chicago in the NL North. A dangerous pitching staff and balance lineup that no one wants to face down the stretch will ineveitably push them thru to the playoffs.

- Record 72-49 - After jumping out to an amazing start, they've been passed for the best record in the NL by 2 different teams. They've lost Quilvio Nunez for 30 days but will have him back in time for the start of the playoffs. They hold a comfortable 8 game lead, but can't afford to rest on that too much. They once had a stranglehold on a playoff berth, their grip is loosened but still firmly in grip.

Fresno Mutant Grizzlies (NL)
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- Record 80-41 - They are already 5 games better then last seasons team and show no signs of slowing down. The NL's best pitching staff has given up only 411 runs so far this season. The next best (Honolulu) has given up 489. The staff has to be good because the offense has only scored 523 runs, which is 3rd worst behind Salem's 500 and St Louis' 489.

Honolulu Witch Doctors (NL)
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- Record 81-40 - They have given up the 2nd fewest runs (489) and scored the most runs (738 - next closest is 628) for a +249 in runs. The scary thing is that their expected win percentage says they aren't playing as well as capable.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

10/9 HBD - Wide News

10/9 - Randall on Baseball - Silver Linings, Warning Track World - Season 10 draft, Shoeless Joe - All Star snubs, NCAA - Playoff Picture 157, Joey Belle - NL Hot Starts Hitters, Clarkson - New & Notes, Billy Beane -Season Batting Records 131 games, Talk with SoxYanks12 on random topics.

Monday, September 27, 2010

9/27 This week in CAPB, Shoeless Joe tomorrow.

A one hour episode for the CAPB league. Standings, Top 3 League Leaders - Players and Teams all major categories. The episode went ok but Im a little rusty on doing leagues off the cuff rather than off RSS feeds. It'll get better and more entertaining as I get used to it again.

I've decided to have a 16 listen cut-off on each league. Im going to run TWIHBD as scheduled with CAPB, Shoeless Joe, Rickey, Cobb, & Doubleday M-F. If the league does not reach the 16 podcast listens by the following week I will cut your league from this format.

I will go through every league in HBD one by one in this manner, starting alphabetically. - mostly likely with Aaron unless there is one alphabetically ahead of it until I go through every league. Make the 16 podcast listen minimum and your league is permanent in the format. If I have to do 2 hour episodes - 2 leagues a day to make room, I will. If it gets to the point where I have to squeeze in more Ill do every other week.

There is a contest in October. Please listen for details or look in the blog archives. In short you will have to listen for a secret letter a day during the 5-6pm episode. Collect the letters and unscramble them to spell a player name. Be the first to call in with the correct name and win a free season courtesy of me. The episode to call in for the prize will be first Sunday in November 5-7pm. PLENTY OF WARNING. I may give hints. Secret letters will only be said M-F. You can load up my podcasts 24/7/365. If its worth it to you then you will. If not I keep my money. No sweat.

Ranking the NL at 74 Games

1. Buffalo Soldiers - Current record 50-24 -Last week #1 (No Change) - The defending champs are certainly the class of the NL. Scored the most runs and given up the fewest in the NL. One cause for concern is that they've thrown the most innings in the NL so far, the pitching staff could get overworked if that pace continutes. The only thing that could derail their cruise to the playoffs is a rash of ....we'd rather not specify here in fear of a jinx.

2. Honolulu Witch Doctors -
Current Record 47-27 - Last week #3 (+1) - Well balanced lineup has this team once again on top in the division. Of their 8 regulars, all have an OPS between .721 and .869. Russ Bryant currently has a .792 OPS so expect that to go up and help an already strong offense.

3. Fresno Mutant Grizzlies -
Current Record 48-26 - Last week #2 (-1) - They fell 1 spot in the rankings. They have given up more runs then they have scored but just a small margin, so are they playing over their heads? They may need to consider adding a bat to their anemic offense, as only 2 teams in the NL have scored less. Their bullpen however is STRONG led by Glen Hill and his perfect 20 saves.

4. Toledo Holy Fargin Schnicks -
Current record 44-30 - Last week #4 (+0) - After returning from the 15 day DL, Cody Percival, missed some more time with a sore elbow. So despite getting only 8 starts so far from the Cy Young winner Toledo has been going back and forth with Chicago for 1st place in the East. Percival has shown flashes of returning to normal, and will be counted on in the 2nd half.

5. Chicago Gangsters - Current Record 45-29 - Last week #9 (+4) - The trade for Junior Chen has not quite worked out as well as hoped, but it is still early. Dick Stewart recently won Player of the Week honors and is pacing the offense along with Julio Marin and Felipe Mota. Mota hasn't quite played up to his standards but is still providing power. James Pong has pitched better of late and more like the #1 that they require of him and is leading the league in wins with a 10-2 record. The Gangsters may have a tough time making the playoffs in a tough division, if their offense slumps they'll be in trouble. The bullpen holds the key.

6. Jackson Pollocks -
Current Record 39-35 - Last Week #5 (-1) - They've given up 325 runs so far, good for 6th in the NL, but their bullpen is a concern as their record is 9-10 in 1-run games (5-5 in extra innings). With all 4 teams within 5 games of each other in the NL South the playoffs will not come easy.

7. New Britain Fighting Beer Drinkers -
Current Record 38-36 - Last Week #5 (-1) -

8. Sacramento Terrible Two's -
Current Record 36-38 - Last Week #6 (-2) -

9. Salt Lake City Ampersands -
Current Record 36-38 - Last Week # 11 (+2) - MVP candidate Placido Benitez is still wearing out pitching staffs, and trying to carry the team to the playoffs.

10. New Orleans Hot Fives -
Current Record 38-36 - Last Week #15 (+5) -

11. Atlanta Hooch -
Current Record 37-37 - Last Week #14 (+3)
Much improved lately, they are still shipping out talent. No matter what they do they always are a tough team.

12. St Louis River Dogs -
Current Record 36-38 - Last Week #8 (-4)
Weak offense, coupled with pitching staff faltering = tumble in the rankings.

13. Charlotte Knights -
Current Record 35-39 - Last Week # 10 (-3)

14. Jacksonville Junk Yard Dogs -
Current Record 32-42 - Last Week #7 (-7)
Our biggest change, falling 7 spots. The starting rotation has been BRUTAL.

15. Trenton Thunder -
Current Record 35-39 - Last Week #12 (-3)
No matter what they do, they just can't seem to wake up the bats.

16. Salem Squirrel Monkeys -
Current Record 13-61 - Last Week #16 (no change)
While they are improved greatly, especially since replacing ownership, they are too far gone to compete for the season. New owner kidsid(some others might know him as bullet6464 from other worlds) will have this team in the hunt next season.