Monday, August 18, 2008

NL WEST - Season 10 Preview

Honolulu Electric Lizards : rougherpride (4th season)

Last Season: 98-64 (2nd)

Key Additions: Glenn Minor (FA)

Key Losses: Julio Rios (FA), Santiago Ordonez (RELEASED)

Outlook: After a miserable Season 8 Honolulu righted the ship to finish with a 98-64 record, good enough for a wildcard birth. Unfortunately some key losses and the emergence of divisional foes will make getting back to the playoffs an uphill battle in Season 10. Former Rookie of the Year Frank Sutton and Anthony Crespo head a good staff that will keep them in most games. 26 year old stud Dennis Hudson put together his second strait 40+ HR and 130+ RBI season and should be well protected with Clarence O'Donnell in the lineup. This team has all the makings of a playoff contender but the strength of their division may keep them out of another wildcard spot. Still the best players on this team are all still under 30 so the Lizards appear set for the future.

Fresno Farmhands : kmoyer (5th season)

Last Season: 65-97 (4th)

Key Additions: NONE

Key Losses: NONE

Outlook: After improving the team in each of his first 3 seasons, kmoyer took a step back in Season 10. A lack of any impact off season signings makes you wonder were this team is headed. Still Fresno does posses a nice mix of young and old players. Cameron Carter continues to improve but the rest of the staff is starting to show its age. Lead off man Lynn Rodgers should get plenty of chances to show his stuff but no one else in the lineup looks to get on base with any consistency. To make things worse for the Farmhands it plays in one of the toughest divisions. Some good youngsters wait in the wings, including Eli Trevino, but until they develop Fresno will struggle.

Tacoma Pixies : jakurus(10th season)

Last Season: 109-53 (1st)

Key Additions: Jerry Baxter (FA), Jim Walker (FA)

Key Losses: Max Feliz (RELEASED), Donnie Brown (FA)

Outlook: Tacoma captured its second strait WS title but the biggest headline has to be the loss of Donnie Brown. The good news for the Pixies, they were without Brown for the second half of last season and still managed to win another title. The bad news is, they not only lost Brown to free agency but he landed in the division! Everyone will be watching to see how jacurus responds without Brown leading the way. Jim Walker joins a still dominate staff and watch out for Alex Richard who looked impressive in a late season call up last year. The offence will be lead by last years All-Start game MVP Cristobal Quixote and should produce more then enough runs to keep the W’s comming. The loss of Brown shouldn’t be over looked but Tacoma is deeply talented and will compete for another title.

Los Angeles Knights : mrtheedge (7th season)

Last Season: 92-70 (3rd)

Key Additions: Donnie Brown (FA), Ted Walsh (FA), Brent Corsi (FA),

Key Losses: Alex Ortiz (TRADE)

Outlook: Donnie Brown, Ted Walsh… Take a couple deep breaths before you go on because the Knights staff also includes former Cy Young winner (can we please rename this the Donnie Brown award?) Luis Johnson, youngster Bobby Chance and all time saves leader Wills Little. Hopefully jakurus didn’t just stick his head in a trash compactor. The staff on paper appears to be the best ever seen and has turned the Knights into WS favorites overnight. The offense isn’t bad either headed by some very promising youngsters and longtime Knight Sherman Lawton. The loss of Alex Ortiz will hurt but the offense will produce enough to win and win often. If this team stays healthy it’s hard to imagine them not going deep into the post season.

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