Saturday, September 3, 2011

Hall Of Fame Results s22

Trevor Donovan 16
Matty Dotel 12
Brutus Bryant 9
David Andujar 8
Alex Belliard 6
Willis Little 6
Joaquin Carreras 5
Luis Johnson 5
Hanley Decker 4
Midre Aquino 4
Kevin O'Connor 3
Benito Romero 3
Trey Ransom 2
Sherman Lawton 2
Alex Ortiz 2
Peter Belinda 2
Timo Kondou 1
Tom Saunders 1
Harold Hurst 1

Looks like Donovan may make it in next season.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Power Rankings: Season 20 V.5 Mid Season

Power Ranking V5
This weeks rank;(last week); change; Team; (record); week's record
 1(1)  NC Tampa Bay (66-27) 13-6
 2(3)  +1 Ottawa (57-36) 13-4
 3(2)  -1 Syracuse (57-36) 10-7
 4(4)  NC Cleveland (59-34) 11-6
 5(8)  +3 Mexico City (57-36) 10-7
 6(9)  +3 Charlotte (52-41) 10-7
 7(6)  +1 Vancouver (52-41) 11-6
 8(7)  -1 Huntington (57-36) 11-6
 9(13)  +4 Hartford (57-36) 12-5

 10(5)  -5 St. Louis (48-45) 5-12

 11(11)  NC Chicago NL (50-43) 7-10
 12(10)  -2 Chicago AL (45-48)  6-11
 13(16)  +3 Detroit (49-44) 10-7
 14(12)  -2 Florida (49-44)  8-9
 15(15)  NC Fresno (51-42) 9-8
 16(17)  +1 Little Rock (45-48) 8-9
  17(14)  -3 San Diego (42-51) 5-12
 18(18)  NC Scranton (51-42) 8-9
 19(23)  +4 Charleston (43-50) 13-4
 20(21)  +1 Anaheim (46-47) 8-9
 21(19)  -2 Colorado (45-48) 6-11 
 22(20)  -2 Washington (37-56)  5-12    
 23(22)   -1 New York NL (44-49) 10-7
 24(28)  +4 San Francisco (43-50) 10-7
 25(24)   -1 San Juan (40-53)  8-9
 26(25)   -1 Las Vegas (39-54) 7-10
 27(27)   NC Salem (38-55) 8-9
 28(26)  -2 New York AL (29-64) 5-12 
 29(31)  +2 Indianapolis (37-56) 7-10
 30(30)  NC Atlanta (30-63) 5-12 
 31(29) -2  Seattle (35-58)  9-8
 32(32)  NC Baltimore (38-55) 6-11

Friday, March 18, 2011

Season 20: Mid-Season Awards- NL Cy Young

1.Rico Pascual: Pascual's dominance is incredible.
2.Al Olivares:  Pascual's dominance is so far above everyone else it takes away from some of the other performances that deserve recognition, like Olivares'.
3. Dicky Feng: Feng has been very good so far and could be better if some Washington players were meeting expectations.
4. Harry Owen:  Best closr in the NL this season.
5.Paxton Gaetti:  Not as many innings as I would like to see but his dominance is undeniable.

Season 20: Mid-Season Awards- AL Cy Young

1. Victor Nieves:  Third best WHIP in the league, leads the league in starter ERA, league leader in wins, 3rd in K's.  He has been the winning pitcher in 15 of the 19 games he has started.  That is making a difference.
2. Ryan Edwards: league leading WHIP.  11 Wins.
3. Eric Turnbow:  Turnbow's numbers are impressive out of the pen.
4. Ray Evans: Not a real candidate for this award but past the top three no one is at this point.  Very good season and deserves some recognition for it.
5.  William Stephens:  Stephens won't show up on many lists, he has very few counting stats, but his performance has probably been the brightest part of the season in Baltimore.

Season 20: Mid-Season Awards- AL MVP

1. Donaldo Santana:  It was a tough call between Santana, Willie Alcantara, and Javier Arroyo.  What I cannot figure out is how Santana has scored so many more runs than the other team with a significantly lower OBP than both of them while playing for the same team.  He also has many more RBI.
2.Kordell Mintz:  Mintz has been the driving offensive player on the second best team in the AL while playing a difficult defensive position.
3. Pat Hernandez Hernandez has Cleveland in a position to be the first non-Syracuse team to win the AL North.  Can he keep them there?
4. John Yamaguchi: Yamaguchi has been one of the most dominating players in Ruth history, he has no MVP awards.  This may be his last shot.  His international signing bonus was only $9.5m impressive.
5. Eddie Arnold:  Arnold and Oswaldo Franco were both up for the final slot and I gave Arnold a slight edge.  The fact that they are both so similar and up for consideration could also be the argument aghainst both of them.

Season 20: Mid-Season Awards- NL MVP

My criteria for MVP is not based solely on stats, although they play a big part in it.  Team success and expectations also plays a role in it.

1.  Don Tanaka: Tanaka does it all on offense, table setter, run producer, steals, he is the heart and soul of a dominant Tampa team.

2.Russell Tracy: Hartford was predicted to be a darkhorse tam this season and so far they are one of the top 3 teams in the league.  Tracy plays a huge role in their success.
3.Javier Javier:  Javier has carried this team for most of the season.  Considering the injuries and underperformance of others on this team it is amazing they are in charge of the second wild card slot.

4.  Brandon Walsh:  It was a toss up between Walsh and William Dalrymple.  While Dalrymple's power is impressive, Walsh's ability to get on base provides more value to the Huntington team.

5.  Bobby Valentin:  As Valentin goes so goes the Armstrongs.  When he slumps the team slumps, when he is hot the team is hot.

P.T. Belliard is having a great season but his team is 6 out of the division and 4 out of the wild card.  If they can make a run in the second half then Belliard will move up on this list, pretty close to the top.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Season 20: Mid-Season Awards- NL Rookie of the Year

1. Shannon Clark:  Clark is going to be a monster for a while.  he needs a nickname.  I vote "Mothra"
2. Floyd Dixon:  Solid contributions helping put Fresno in first.
3. Randall Frye: Frye does have the wins or saves but he has been very good in his flex role.
4. Nate Payton:  His numbers are very good, imagine if his ballpark was more offensively friendly.
5.Dusty Weathers: Weathers has been solid.

Season 20: Mid-Season Awards- AL Rookie of the Year

1. Geoff Ruffin: Solid contributions here.  He had an 18 game hitting streak.
2. Micah Elarton: Elarton has not missed a beat since his promotion
3.Clarence Silvestri: He has a bright future in front of him.
4.Ron Wise: Good offense from a tough defensive position.
5. Tony Plata: success in the pen, limited opportunities.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Player Profile: Karim Castro

Karim Castro is a sentimental favorite of mine.  He leapfrogs a couple others who have better overall numbers but fewer IP than him.  Who would have ever figured a player with a projected 28 health would end up pitching almost 1500 major league innings over the course of his 14 year career.  He also has 14 trips to the DL and is still performing at a high level.  If there was a comeback player of the year award in HBD he would have won it more than once.  He is the Chad Pennington of HBD.  His signing bonus was $7.9 million and he more than earned it over his career.  The one area he has always been hurt most by his health is in contract negotiating.  At his peak he had control over 70 and splits in the high 70's, his ratings were all star caliber, but he was never able to earn over $3.8 million per season because Lloyd's of London wouldn't touch him.  At 34 years old he is nearing the declining stage but he is still pretty good and will likely be a free agent value after the season.

Season 20 AL All Star Candidates: RP

1. Eric Turnbow:  Turnbow has been fantastic and is working on a contract year.  His previous seasons have been good, this one is outstanding.  He is coming off a huge contract.  What is he asking for next season?
2.Victor Fernandez: Fernandez has pitched often and been pretty good.  He is averaging over 9k/9
3.Brutus Chambers:  Chambers has been a rock at the end of the Cleveland bullpen.
4.Terry Hunt:  I almost missed hunt but his 88 IP out of the pen and his 12-0 record could easily have him as high as second on this list.
5.Wilbur Osborn:  Osborn's numbers are very good but his ratings are a puzzler.  His durability is too low to be either a reliable starter or a full time reliever.  How would be the best way to maximize innings?

Marino Ayala, Larry Dye, and Tony Sanchez have all been fantastic.  Sanchez is a perfect 27-27 in save opportunites.  None of them meet the IP criteria.

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: RP

Minimum of 30 IP, have to be pitching primarily from the pen.  This means tandem starters would also be candidates here.

1.Harry Owen:  Owen is 24 for 24 in save opportunities but when reached for comment he attributed all of his success to Ronald Milton's glovework in left field as well as his offensive contributions says, "If not for Milty we would not even be in position to win those games and no wins means no saves."

2.Paxton Gaetti:  Gaetti is part of a flex tandem rotation.  He has been on the vulture half of the tandem team and been the one to earn the wins for the solid performance.

3.Alex Kata: Katadoesn't get the saves for his role but he has been a key player in the pen, without his performance Owens would not have been able to credit Milty.  I almost went with Ken Hansen on this list but Kata's appearances and Hansen's ERA made me lean towards Kata.

4.Randall Anderson:  Another member of the flex tandem rotation.  Anderson isn't able to go as long or as often as he was able to as a young man but he is still effective.

5.Domingo Valenzuela: Valenzuela would be a heck of a starter if given the chance.  It says a lot about the Tampa rotation that this guy is coming out of the pen.

Rich Sierra, Jim Becker and Douglas McCullough are pitching great but did not meet the IP requirement

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: SP

1. Rico Pascual:  Very impressive resume already and he is on his way to his first Cy Young.  He has already been player of the week twice this season.  His EAR is over 1.4 runs better than the next closest player, you could almost double what he has allowed.  He only allowed 2 runs on 5 hits over 8 in his only loss of the season.
2.Al Olivares:  Breakout season so far for Olivares.  Can he keep it up?
3.Kevin Shigetoshi  League leader in k's so far this season and his other stats are impressive too.
4. Angel Sosa: Finese guy here, playing well.
5.Marc Elster:  Elster lacks wins but has been very reliable.  Questions of his value are being answered well so far.

 Next up would have beenRoger Camilli:  What is the secret with this guy?  His numbers seem out of line with his ratings and his team is not very good.

Dicky Fengjust missed the list as well

Season 20 AL All Star Candidates: SP

1. Ryan Edwards:  He has a few less starts then some guys but has great stats.

2. Victor Nieves: Nieves best season since winning the Cy Young award in season 13.

3.Ted Yates:  Yates is the first of three guys I juggled over the final three spots.  I moved them and looked at the stats over and over.  All are a little light on wins but that is a team stat and great pitching does not always have the wins to show for it.

4.P.T. Giles: Giles, Evans and Yates could all be argued for any of the slots 3-5.

5. Ray Evans:  The further I looked though I settled on Evans 5th because of IP and a higher WHIP mainly caused by walks.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Season 20 AL All Star Candidates: RF

1.Ernie Randall: Breakout season for Randall.  He is not really playing RF but this is where he is listed.

2.Geoff Ruffin: Welcome to the bigs rook.

3.Miguel Diaz:  At 24 Diaz is already in his 5th full season in the majors.

4.Vladimir Moreno: Moreno is Mexico City's primary RF and playing very well.

5.Garry Fultz:  This may be Fultz's last great season.   Will his option be picked up?

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: RF

1.Don Tanaka: Perennial MVP candidate Tanaka's power numbers are impressive. His ability to get on base is his most valuable weapon.
2.Brandon Walsh:  Walsh may be the player who is not an Armstrong who I wish was an Armstrong the most.
3. Julio Iglesias:  His power numbers are impressive, he is looking to surpass last season's monster season.
4.  Alex Matsumoto:  Although he is primarily a 1b he does have 35 games in rightfield.  One of two TB players on the list.
5.Ronnie Parent:  Parent is mostly playing LF but shows up as a RF.

I can't believe I had to leave Ned Andrews off the list.  He is annually one of my most disappointing players.  He puts up good numbers but they never seem to meet what I expect based on his ratings.

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: CF

1.Horacio Lee:  Lee is duplicating his breakout season from season 19.

2.Wendell Lambert: Lambert has excelled in a full time role again this season.  Will he finish the season in San Juan?

3.Xavier McKinley:  Good power season from McKinley.

4.Artie Coleman:  Like some of the AL players Coleman lacks some power but is having a solid season.

5.Lou DiFelice: DiFelice's numbers have slid this season but he is still productive.

Season 20 AL All Star Candidates: CF

1.  Shawn Koskie:  Koskie is having a great season in his first full season in the majors.
2.Rich Schalk: Schalk is a doubles machine.
3.Geronimo Posada:  The question is where has Posada's power gone?
4.Ron Wise: Wise lacks power but gets on base well.
5. Victor Rincon: Like Wise he lacks power but putting up good numbers.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: LF

1. Rex Evans: Since being traded to St. Louis, Evans has hit .390 and has an OBP of .423.
2.Ismael Gomez:  Coors field again.
3.Ronald Milton:  Milton has nver won any awards over his career.
4.Domingo Montanez: Montanez is having a break out season.
5.Kent Peters:  Peters has been the best player in Detroit this season.

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: LF

1.William Wilkins:  Great season so far and an early MVP candidate.

2.Irv Crawford: What makes Crawford's numbers confusing is the lack of runs or RBI to point to for why his homeruns and OBP are so good.

3. Kent Wells: The lack of runs is a question about Wells as well considering his OBP.

4. Sandy Lo Duca: Probably Lo Duca's worst season so far.  It says a lot about his others seasons that his worst is one of the top 5 of the season.

5. Micah Elarton: Elarton is lacking some of the at bats that others have and he makes the list by a hair over Yamil Veras and Todd Adcock

Season 20 AL All Star Candidates: SS

1.Kordell Mintz:  Mintz season is head and shoulders above other AL SS.
2. Bartolo Bennett:  Bennett's best season so far.
3. Brutus Spence:  Spence is making the most of the opportunity to play everyday.
4. Omar Sanchez: Sanchez's main contribution is with his glove.
5.Pedro Uribe:  Second SD guy on the list, showcasing the importance of defense in that stadium.

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: SS

1. David Bonilla: Bonilla is having a great season.

2.Brian Lennon:  It says a lot about the quality of player on the list when the #2 guy has been out for 20 games and is not expected back this year.

3.Pedro Manto:  Manto's numbers are good but they are a step below the top two.

4.Albert Nunez: Nunez is having his best year as a pro this season.

5.Josh Williams:  Williams on the other hand seems to have taken a step backwards.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: Third Base

1. Glen Ford:A guy with 55 power has 21 HR at the break?  Coors is a powerful medicine.
2. Terry Glover: Glover is going to be very good for a long time.
3.Luis Mota:  Mota's numbers are not spectacular but he is solid.
4.Benny Wolf: Wolf's seasosn has been up and down and is trending upward again.
5.Brad Terrell: Terrell's numbers as a whole probably do not belong on this list.  Considering he was hitting .202 two weeks ago it is amazing where he is at now.

Season 20 AL All Star Candidates: Third Base

1.Jesus Ortiz: Chicago has three players listed at 3b who would could make this list.  Ortiz is the best so far.
2.Jeremi Kelly: Kelly is having his best season in six years.
3.Dwight Good: Good is surprisingly powerful.
4.Luis Santana: His ratings look like he could be very streaky, currently he is streaking in a good way.
5.Steven Ruffin:  Ruffin looks a lot like Santana in ratings and stats.

Macbeth Treadway was close on the list and considering his ratings he has been surprisingly productive this season.

College Basketball Tournament Pickem

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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Power Rankings: Season 20 V.4

Power Ranking V4
This weeks rank;(last week); change; Team; (record); week's record
1(1)  NC Tampa Bay (42-15) 13-6
2(2)  NC Syracuse (47-29) 11-8
3(7)  +4 Ottawa (44-32)12-7 
4(3)  -1 Cleveland (48-28) 12-7
5(5)  NC St. Louis (43-33) 10-9
6(12)  +6 Vancouver (41-35) 9-10
7(10)  -3 Huntington (46-30) 12-8
8(6)  +2 Mexico City (47-29) 12-7
9(17)  +8 Charlotte (42-34) 13-6
10(4)  -6 Chicago AL (39-37)  9-10
11(9)  -2 Chicago NL (43-33) 9-10
12(8)  -4 Florida (41-35)  8-11
13(11)  -2 Hartford (45-31) 10-9
14(16)  +2 San Diego (37-39) 10-9
15(18)  +3 Fresno (42-34) 11-9
16(15)  -1 Detroit (39-37) 9-10
17(13)  -4 Little Rock (37-39) 8-11
18(19)  +1 Scranton (43-33) 11-8 
19(14)  -5 Colorado (39-37) 9-10 
20(21)  +1 Washington (32-44)  7-12 
21(20)  -1 Anaheim (38-38) 8-12  
22(23)  +1 New York NL (34-42) 11-8
23(24)  +1 Charleston (30-46) 10-9
24(22)  -2 San Juan (32-44)  7-12
25(29)  +4 Las Vegas (32-44)10-9
26(30)  +4 New York AL (24-52) 8-11 
27(31)  +4 Salem (30-46) 8-11
28(27)  -1 San Francisco (33-43) 7-13
29(26)  -3 Seattle (26-50)  4-15
30(25)  -5 Atlanta (25-51) 4-15
31(28)  -3 Indianapolis (30-46) 7-12  
32(32)  NC Baltimore (32-44)14-5

Season 20 AL All Star Candidates: Second Base

1. Pat Hernandez:  Hernandezis following up a career year from season 19 with another stellar season.
2. Troy Kramer:  Kramer has almost matched his production from season 19 in half a season this year.
3. Clarence Silvestri: Clarence is a little short of at bats and is young, but he has a bright future.
4. Brendan Benson:  Benson has been solid for Scranton.
5. Todd Schafer:  His 27-0 stolen base percentage is eye catching.

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: Second Base

1. Vic Ramirez: Ramirez hit .412 in his last full season in AAA during season 18.

2. Jack Casian:  Chicago is very thankful Casian has been productive and made up for some lack of contributions from other positions.

3. Bobby Valentin:  Valentin has long been the St. Louis team MVP.

4. Miguel Alvarado:  This guy would be at the top of the AL list.

5. Jeff Simpkins:  I use the league leaders page under stats and sort by positions to do this blog feature.  Tampa (NL) has two 2b in the top five for all star consideration.

The NL 2b All Star candidates is an impressive list of stats.  No overwhelming home-run numbers but some very solid offensive players, most of whom get on base very well.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Jayson Maas

Jayson Maas, son of former major leaguer Kevin Maas,  is not much of a prospect.  He followed his father's career path but hasn't really displayed much of his father's baseball skills.  That changed yesterday when Jayson had a Maas-like day when he hit 2 home runs in one game.  Congrats Jayson, way to make dad proud.

Season 20 NL All Star Candidates: First Base

1.P.T. Belliard:  As long as this guy is in Coors he is going to be the most productive 1b in the league and could challenge the league career HR record.
2. William Dalrymple: Sensational numbers all around.
3. Shaggy Moore:  His clutch hitting is the key factor in San Juan's season.
4.Marc Christman: Hard to imagine asking where a player's power went when they have 20 HR at the break.
5. Jose Toca:  Ideal #2 hitter.

Season 20 AL All Star Candidates: First Base

1. John Yamaguchi: Best overall production by league first basemen.
2. Oswaldo Franco: Production numbers are similar to Yamaguchi's just with a little less power.
3.Javier Arroyo: great prouction, easily could be #1.
4.  Kenneth Pierre:  He is having a solid season but his power numbers are a little down.  He needs a Tejada B-12 shot.
5.Victor Wengert: The order of these top 5 are all debatable, after Wengert there is a bit of a drop off.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

NL All Star Candidates: Catcher

1.Javier Javier: MVP candidate, 32 home runs.
2.Hector Dotel if not for JAvier he would be the best catcher in both leagues.
3. Benito Fernandez: lacks some at bats but his numbers look great.  How is he doing it?
4.Willie Bennett:  Gets on base.
5.Benito Gonzalez is good in the clutch, can't call much a game though.

AL All Star Candidates: Catcher

Top 5 candidates for the All Star Game
1. Hideki Yamamoto: an OPS over 1.000 is tough to top at this position.

2.Eli Trevino: not great at calling a game but gets on base.

3. Willie Alcantara: Leads the league in cool facial hair.

4.Al Burke: Good numbers and good value.

5.Harold Cashman: HBD's Jason Kendall, the younger one who hit home runs.

Take one down and pass it around

Take one down and pass it around is Chuck Masset's favorite chorus and it applies to his season this year.  After spring training Chuck Masset was a rule V draft pick,16th pick overall but only the 10th player taken.  His projections look like he has potential to be a major leaguer.  His current ratings make it look like those ratings may be reachable unless his season continues the way it is now.

Currently his ratings are beginning to slide, part of it is limited opportunities since he has only pitched 15 innings this season.  15 innings is hardly anything to be ashamed of though and there are some closers with fewer innings pitched.

The real culprit is that transaction log.  Masset, currently residing on the waiver wire, has already been on four teams this season and it would not be shocking to see him claimed now.  Good luck Chuck, hope you get waived 4 more times this season.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

BB/9 and control

Below are the team average control ratings as well as their bb/9 statistics.  The stat doesn't tell everything because some pitching staffs face fewer batters /9 and others have pitched fatigued and that impacts their numbers.  The other way to look closer at this is to look at the rates and ratings for the starting rotations, since they pitch the most innings

Team            Team Avg con   bb/9
league AVG                           3.24
Syracuse  85       2.87

Chicago    83      2.51

Huntington  83    3.02

San Diego  82     3.10

Fresno        82     2.74

Ottawa        81     2.92

Cleveland   81      3.32

Charleston   80     2.86

Detroit         80     3.89

Tampa Bay  80     2.54
Washington  80    2.91

St. Louis       79    3.18
New York AL     3.52

Florida         78      3.37

Vancouver    78      2.97

Charlotte       77     3.25

Mexico City  77     3.52

Atlanta          76     3.49

San Francisco 76   2.93

Hartford          76   2.89

Salem              75  3.12

Little Rock      75   3.07

Indianapolis    74    4.29

New York NL 73    3.18

Colorado        72    3.15

Baltimore       70    3.57

Chicago AL    70    3.55

Scranton         70    4.01

Seattle            69    3.61

Las Vegas      69    3.19 

Anaheim         69    3.70

San Juan         64    4.67

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Draft night: Season 20

With less than 24 hours until the draft commences owners are making the final tweaks to rankings.  At a quick glance the draft looks pitcher deep but position player shallow.  Not a good year to have a ton of compensatory picks.

Player Profile: Trevor Donovan

As with Weston a few weeks ago, it appears we are nearing the end of another era.  Trevor Donovan is currently on the Waiver Wire.  He sits at 789 home runs at the moment, which ranks second all time, but in 100 at bats this year he has 1 homerun.  It looks less and less likely that he will hit those last few to get him to the magical 800 or move further to catch Marvin.  Good luck catching on somewhere Trevor.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Power Rankings: Season 20 V.3

Power Ranking V3
This weeks rank;(last week); change; Team; (record); week's record
1(1)  NC Tampa Bay (42-15) 15-6
2(6)  +4 Syracuse (36-21) 15-6 
3(3)  NC Cleveland (36-21) 13-8
4(4)  NC Chicago AL (30-27) 10-9
5(2)  -3 St. Louis (33-24) 8-13
6(5)  -1 Mexico City (35-22) 12-9
7(7)   NC Ottawa (32-25) 10-10
8(17)  +9 Florida (33-24) 14-7  
9(14)  +5 Chicago NL (34-23) 14-7
10(9)  -1 Huntington (22-14) 12-9
11(15)  +4 Hartford (35-22) 15-6 
12(8)   -4 Vancouver (32-25) 10-11
13(24)  +11 Little Rock (29-28) 15-6
14(11)  -3 Colorado (30-27) 12-9
15(16)  +1 Detroit (30-27) 13-8
16(12)  -4 San Diego (27-30) 11-10 
17(20)  +3 Charlotte (29-28) 13-8
18(13)  -5 Fresno (21-15) 10-11
19(21)  +2 Scranton (32-25) 14-7
20(10)  -10 Anaheim (23-13) 6-15 
21(18)  -3 Washington (25-32) 9-12
22(22)  NC San Juan (25-32) 10-11
23(23)  NC New York NL (23-34) 9-12
24(32)  +8 Charleston (20-37)11-10
25(27)  +2 Atlanta (21-36) 7-14
26(30)  +4 Seattle (12-24)  10-11
27(19)  -8 San Francisco (26-31) 8-13 
28(25)  -3 Indianapolis (23-34) 5-16 
29(29)  NC Las Vegas (22-35) 7-14
30(26)  -4 New York AL (16-41) 5-17 
31(28)  -3 Salem (22-35) 6-14
32(31)  -1 Baltimore (18-39) 6-15

Sunday, February 27, 2011

International Market

So far this season it appears we have been in an international drought.
The best and most expensive so far has been Miguel Gonzales costing $15.3 million.  He looks to be a decent prospect.  After Gonzales the next most expensive prospect was Hector Garrido coming in at $8.5 million.  After last season which seemed to be a shortstop bonanza this season has been desert like. 

Draft Prep

Draft Prep opens in the AM.  The fun begins.
Power Ranking V2
This weeks rank;(last week); change; Team; (record); week's record
1(1) NC Tampa Bay (27-9) 14-5
2(6) +4  St. Louis (25-11)14-4
3(13) +10 Cleveland (23-13)13-5 
4(8) +4   Chicago AL (20-16)10-9 
5(7) +2   Mexico City (23-13)14-4
6(3) -2    Syracuse (21-15) 12-7
7(5) -2    Ottawa (22-15) 11-8
8(12) +4   Vancouver (22-14) 13-6
9(11) +2   Huntington (22-14) 11-7
10(10) NC Anaheim (23-13) 12-7 
11(14) +3 Colorado (18-18) 9-9
12(25) +13 San Diego (16-20) 11-7
13(2) -11 Fresno (21-15) 9-10
14(9) -5  Chicago NL (20-16) 8-11
15(4) -11 Hartford (20-16) 8-10
16(20) +4 Detroit (17-19)11-8
17(19) +2 Florida (19-17) 10-9
18(28) +10Washington (16-20)11-7
19(29) +10San Francisco (18-18) 10-8
20(17) -3  Charlotte (16-20) 9-10
21(23) +2  Scranton (18-18) 10-8
22(24) +2  San Juan (15-21) 7-12
23(26) -3   New York NL (14-22)7-12
24(18) -6   Little Rock (14-22) 4-14
25(15) -10 Indianapolis (18-18) 5-13
26(16) -10 New York AL (11-24) 4-14
27(22) -5   Atlanta (14-22) 6-13
28(21) -7   Salem (16-21) 6-13
29(27) -2   Las Vegas (15-21) 7-11
30(31) +1  Seattle (12-24)8-10
31(30) -1   Baltimore (12-24) 6-13
32(32) NC Charleston (9-27) 6-12

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Monday, February 21, 2011

Player Profile: Roger Weston

Rogers Weston is a future Hall of Famer, the Ruth all-time leader in hits by over 4oo and is 5th all time in walks.  Part of his success is longevity and his ability to accumulate but he has had success enough to stay in the games.  He has been traded three times (trades included Bobby Valentin, Andre Reese, Randall Anderson, Ismael Samuel, Edgar Padilla, Damaso Renteria, and Danny Lennon).  His player cardd says he has played 21 seasons and only 17 in the majors but his stats only show 44 minor league games (6 in season 3 and 38 in season 18).  He has 60 minor league hits and 65 post season hits.

He is a 7 time all star, 4 time silver slugger and one time World Series champ. The most he ever made in a season was $9.4, this was during what was probably his worst statistical season in his prime.  He played everywhere in the field.  2b was his primary position with 1082 games but he also had 632 games at 3b, 482 at ss, 219 as a rf, and 211 as a DH.  Another 108 games are split between cf and lf.  His overall rating of 90 at its peak made him an all-star.

The question now with Weston is what next.  He is on the waiver wire currently and sits 3 hits shy of 3500.  He is 39 years old and his last two contracts have been for the league minimum.  There is not much of a chance of him contributing much to a contender but he still has the ratings to be slightly useful off the bench versus righties.  The last remaining question is whether his hits record will ever fall.

Poll Results

AL North- Syracuse 42%, Ottawa 28%, Chicago 14%, Cleveland 14%

AL East- New York 50%, Scranton 25%, Indianapolis 25%, Baltimore 0%

AL South- Charlotte 38%, Mexico City 38%, Little Rock 23%, Florida 0%

AL West- Vancouver 69%, San Francisco 15%, Salem 15%, San Diego 0%

NL North- Chicago 35%, Hartford 30%, Detroit 25%, Seattle 10%

NL East- St. Louis 71%, Washington 9%, Atlanta 9%, New York 9%

NL South- Huntington 50%, Tampa 42%, San Juan 7%, Charleston 7%

NL West- Anaheim 46%, Fresno 33%, Las Vegas 13%, Colorado 6%

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Weekly Power Rankings Season 20 Week 1

Below are the first of the power week of the season.  Instead of relying on votes, as I did two seasons ago, I analyzed the numbers and schedules.  In most cases the rankings are in line with what you would expect based on divisional rankings and overall records.  There are a few whose record does not reflect what the team is really capable of doing. 
 Power Ranking V1
1. Tampa Bay (13-4)
2. Fresno (12-5)
3. Syracuse (9-8)
4. Hartford (12-6)
5. Ottawa (11-7)
6. St. Louis (11-7)
7. Mexico City (9-9)
8. Chicago AL (10-7)
9. Chicago NL (12-5)
10. Anaheim (11-6)
11. Huntington (11-7)
12. Vancouver (9-8)
13. Cleveland (10-8) 
14. Colorado (9-9)
15. Indianapolis (13-5)
16. New York AL (7-10)
17. Charlotte (7-10)
18. Little Rock (10-8)
19. Florida (9-8)
20. Detroit (6-11)
21. Salem (9-8)
22. Atlanta (8-9)
23. Scranton (8-10)
24.San Juan (8-9)
25.  San Diego (5-13)
26. New York NL (7-10)
27. Las Vegas (8-10)
28. Washington (5-13)
29. San Francisco (8-10)
30.  Baltimore (6-11)
31. Seattle (4-14)
32. Charleston (3-15)

Friday, February 18, 2011

Injury Hit in Huntington

Sammy Seneca was injured yesterday and will be out the rest of the season.  While Seneca is not the best player on the team he is still a major contributor and an important player in Huntington's hopes to win the World Series.  Perhaps the biggest blessing in the injury is that it was a hamstring injury and it did not impact his bat in any way.  His speed and health ratings took a big hit but he should return ready to hit as well as he was before the injury.

REviewing the other players hurt so far this offseason there have been a few other big injuries none of the others have been for as long or for a player of Seneca's stature.

March Madness tournament

I believe the link below will allow other to join.

Fantasy Baseball Auction League

Info below

You have been invited to join brian's custom league in Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Baseball, Auction League.
In order to join the league, follow the link above or go to game front page, click the "Sign Up Now" or "Get Another Team" button and follow the links to "Join a Custom League". When prompted, enter the League ID# and password below.
League ID#: 78490
Password: Ruth

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Anyone interested in joining a March madness tourney pool?   There would be no limit on the number of entrants.

A second option will be a fantasy baseball league.  I would like to create a yahoo fantasy baseball draft league with the intention that all 12 owners would be Ruth League owners.  It will be an auction league, using the yahoo auction feature.  If interested wither respond to the comments here or send me a trade chat.

No Hitter

Congrats to Jesse Post and Terry Hunt on the combined no hitterHawk Myatt also deserves some credit for calling a great game and chipping in 2 RBI.  He may have deserved more the the player of the game honors than Oswaldo Franco.  You could argue for one of the pitchers but considering they pretty much split the workload it gets harder.  The defense deserves some credit as well, no plus plays were recorded but there were 10 ground outs (2 to 1b), 4 stikeouts, and 13 fly-outs, foul-outs or line-outs.  The ball was certainly in play and a defense with less range could not have done this.

Sadly since this was not a complete game no-hitter it will not appear on either players' player card.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Player Spotlight: Ernie Randall

Ernie Randall has gotten off to a fast start.  Through 7 games Randall has a .536 BA, a .606 OBP He has been fast riser in fantasy leagues but is a down to earth guy.

When asked about his success so far he seemed disappointed, "They are just stats man.  I am more disappointed with out overall record.  Sure I am happy to be playing well but if we aint winnin' it aint worth a hill of pickles."

The last few seasons life for this franchise have been disappointing.  They won the World Series in season 13 and then last season saw a huge drop off in wins.  Team owner billyhowell sold the team and they were relocated.  With the relocation comes new hope.  One fan even remarked, " If this team doesn't win the division I will eat a sock"  While the jury is still out on the team's early season performance the potential is still there.

Part of the early season struggles can be attributed to Mike Harvey who, as one of the team's biggest run producers, really hasn't gotten the stick going.  Then there are pitchers Anthony Crespo, Ryan Edwards, and Valerio Gonzales who have been hit hard so far.  They will turn it around.

Randall remains upbeat, "We get'em back.  Isa long season and we catch up and win our fair rewards." 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Hall of Fame results (total votes last year)

Season 19- voting results

Season 20- My ballot

Hall of Fame Class of Season 20
Hawk Walker18 (14)- For contributions to the game and his 2 Cy Young Awards and 4 All-Star appearances.  See blog entry and jersey pictures.

Failed to gain entry
Matty Dotel14 (new candidate)- See blog entry on Dotel for the details.  Campaign starts now.  If Sammy Manzanillo is a Hall of Famer then there is no doubt Dotel belongs in the Hall.  See blog entry.

Willis Little 13 (5)-  Saunders has more saves, Little was dominating.  Now that Baxter has passed him has he missed his chance?  See old blog entry

Hanley Decker 12 (9)- 3 votes closer.  2 Cy Young awards, mid-career creation.  Dominant for a time period.  He should get in eventually.

Brutus Bryant 6 (6)- I like Brutus, he was a workhorse and did whatever was asked of him.  A poor man's Donnie Brown.

Midre Aquino 5 (4)- 7 All-Star teams and one Cy Young Award.  He also had 2885 K's in his career.

Alex Ortiz5- Maybe the most remarkable thing about him is that he hit 40 hr in 277 ab in half a season in Colorado in season 5.

Alex Belliard 5 (5)- I am going to look very closely here next year to see how good he was.  See blog entry.

Benito Romero 4 (3)- Coors effect.  I do not want Dante Bichette in the Hall.  Career OPS over his career.

Luis Johnson 4 (2)- Very good pitcher, was he great?  I wish I could figure out how to calculate +statistics to compare him to the league at the time. See blog entry.

Tom Saunders 3 (1)- I am not a fan of his numbers.  There are more dominating relievers and after this season he will no longer be the career record holder for saves.

Kevin O'Connor 3 (5)- 13 years in the majors and over 500 homers.

Sherman Lawton 3 (0)- Over 700 home euns and he only gets a vote from me.  See blog entry.

Russ Maurer 2 (1)- Top 15 pitcher in the league at one point.  By that I mean he was not top 10.  He did win a Cy Young Award.

Anthony Abercrombie 2 (1)- played SS more than any other position and 2700 hits is impressive.  He was more of an accumulator that a dominator, he only had 2 all star appearance.
Peter Belinda 1 (2)- Very strong stats but played a position that is dominated by bats.

Timo Kondou 1 (1)- Three all-star appearances on the tail end of his career has the "Pride of Kabul" wishing there was a Veteran's Committee.

Trey Ransom 1 (1)- A DH who caught some.  No awards.

Tyrone Beltre 1 (1)- Another primary ss.  4 all star appearances and 4 silver sluggers to accompany that bug ballpark advantage

Luis Benitez 1 (1)- Benitez was an Armstrong and did some good things.  When I hear his name however I always think, choker. He turned it off in the playoffs.

Rob Adams 0 (1)- so long support. 

Stump May 0 (0)- See blog entry.

Next season I pledge not to nominate anyone who I know will not get in.  That includesStump Mayand Valerio James.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Hawk Walker Jersey Day

The Hawk Walker Hall of Fame write up mentioned a Hawk Walker Jersey.  I believe this was one of the first signs that this game is addicting.

 Must be Hawk Walker Appreciation Day

Season 20 Preview: AL West

Vancouver Anti Tankers
Season 19 Record: 98-64
Budget for players: $100m budgeted, $8.5m left available
Pitching Staff:  6 of 10
Offense:  8 of 10
Bench:  7 of 10
Defense: 8 of 10
Minor League Grade: B+
Divisional Finish: 1
Notes:  Vancouver is above average offensively and defensively at every position.  There is no weakness in the lineup.  They are better versus righties than lefties but are still solid on that side of things.  From my look over the closest to a weakness would be the lack of a true MVP candidate type.  They are a true team in that regard.  The pitching staff is like the offense, solid al around but no cy young types.  Gus Holt could get in the fireman awards discussion in a few years but he still has a lot of growth to go, can he do it in the majors?  The pitcher I like best has got the ratings to be a starter but isn't used as a starter, I am curious why.  The one thing I have noticed on several teams is the disregard for traditional ratings for relievers.  I would love to have someone explain to me the philosophy behind having 8 or more pitchers with stamina over 65.  10 + pitching prospects in the minors all of whom can contribute at the ML level. Gus Holt has potential to be very good as does Bill Rice.  On the positional side of things there are solid prospects for C, SS and 2b on the way.  but not as much depth as on the pitching side of things.  Tike Wirth is in the minors and would repesent an upgrade for over half the teams I looked at.

San Francisco Flaxseeds
Season 19 Record: 77-85
Budget for players: $86m budgeted, $18m left in cap space.
Pitching Staff:  7 of 10
Offense:  6 of 10
Bench:  6 of 10
Defense: 6 of 10
Minor League Grade: A
Divisional Finish: 2
Notes:  The catchers game calling skills are suspect but not awful.  The starters bat more than makes up for it and his other defensive ratings are good.  The offensive core of the team is aging and the SS are there ore for their gloves than their bats.  This is a team in transition on offense and Damaso Lima is the future face of the franchise and a potential ROY candidate this season.  I like their pitching staff, not a weak arm in the bunch.  Damaso Lima is developing and will be very good.  Jorge James is one of those guys who straddles the line between starter and reliever and is ideally suited for a tandem rotation.  There are 12 pitching prospects to keep an eye on with B.J. Kemp being the most special in the group.  Davey Ramirez could be in the majors today and Vic Sherrill is the pretty close and represents the future at the hot corner when Bennett moves on.  This is the deepest farm system I have seen on both the pitching and positional side of things.  The one weakness would be the lack of a SS or CF prospect but that will be addressed in other ways and the guys in place now at SS will be good for a few seasons and there is another 2b who could slide over to CF since Lima isn't going anywhere.

Salem Crack Whores
Season 19 Record: 78-84
Budget for players: $102 M, budgeted, 100k leftover
Pitching Staff:  6 of 10
Offense:  4 of 10
Bench:  4 of 10
Defense: 4 of 10
Minor League Grade: C+
Divisional Finish: 3
Notes: Cristobal Quixote is in the last year of his contract and should not be playing 3b any more.  The SS and CF are average to slightly above average for their positions.  The LF should be playing RF and the RF should be playing LF.  The offense will struggle some against righties.  Sam Graves looks to be the strongest offensive player on the team but his historic performance does not come close to what I would have expected based on his ratings and salary.  Jae Song is worth keeping an eye on.  Jim Decker is one of the best pitchers in the league but his W/L record is a reflection on the offense.  5 or 6 pitchers with potential in the minors.  Cristobal Hernandez is an all-star in the makings.  The offensive prospects are thin and noe have as high a ceiling.  The one who caught my eye was Freddie Monroe.  Monroe is not an all star but can be a solid major leaguer hitting 25+ homers for several seasons.

San Diego Chargers
Season 19 Record: 82-80
Budget for players: $103m budgeted, $10M remaining
Pitching Staff:  4 of 10
Offense:  2 of 10
Bench:  0 of 10
Defense: 3 of 10
Minor League Grade: B+
Divisional Finish:4
Notes:  I will be the first to admit that I am probably the worst person to review this team.  San Diego is one of the parks that you can build a team specifically for and that has been the case historically for this team.  I would look at the roster and wonder how they won so many.  That said I know where to start and that is with the fact that there are  9 players rostered who are positional players.  There is no bench at all.  The grades above reflect the lack of options and depth.  That is a problem when you look closely at Javier Park who could reasonably expected to play at a decent level for 81 games so long as he doesn't get hurt. The catcher is there for his defense, meaning he won't hit.  The 1b has a great mustache but is really a platoon player.  The infield defense is fine and so is CF but LF and RF will struggle especially considering the home park.   15 pitchers on the roster and 10 have a stamina of 60+.  Cameron Carter is in the last year of a huge contract and will be trade bait I assume.  I count 6 pitchers who I would not trust in road games.  10 minor league arms could hit the majors in the next few years with 4 potential all-stars led by Jumbo Hundley.  7 potential major league position players only Willie Barrios could be viewed as a full timer.  The. rest will need to platoon.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Season 20 Preview: AL South

Florida Villians
Season 19 Record: 76-86
Budget for players: $85m budgeted, no room left
Pitching Staff:  6 of 10
Offense:  4 of 10
Bench:  4 of 10
Defense: 6 of 10
Minor League Grade: C+
Divisional Finish:4
Notes:  The SS is a gold glove candidate but he will not be able to play every day and there is no backup.  I am not sure what Ron Orr's role is since his glove and arm limit where he can play and his bat limits his offense.  There are 5 batters I really like and 3 I do not like at all.  The onse I do not like provide more harm than the good provided by those I do like. There is no true CF on the roster.  The best pitcher got hurt in his first pitching appearance of the season.  There are some good pitchers on the team and then there is Andrew Ashby.  A couple duds at the ML level. 4 pitching prospects and 5 positional prospects show potential for major league service, 2 look to be average to above average across the board.

 Mexico City Momentum
Season 19 Record: 83-79
Budget for players: $117m budgeted, 700k cap space.
Pitching Staff:  7 of 10
Offense:  7 of 10
Bench:  6 of 10
Defense: 6 of 10
Minor League Grade: C-
Divisional Finish: 2
Notes:   Victor DeSoto's ratings are impressive.  I can imagine he has been frustrating for more than one owner.  The offense for the team is impressive.  They would be fun to watch.  Good team speed to go with the offensive skills.  The big thing with this team is there is no apparent weakness, depending who is catching.  The biggest weakness is the lack of a true top end player to pound it. Kordell Mintz is a fan favorite and the team has planned a Kordell Mintz hair night duing which every fan will be given a wig that looks like Kordell's hair.  The SP are decent the bullpen is very good.  The minors lack any real positional prospects.  Every one I thought I saw turned out to be a 27+year old DH.  There were about 4 pitchers with potential but none really worth wasting time on.

Little Rock Erratic Chows
Season 19 Record: 80-82
Budget for players: $117m budgeted, $1.5m left
Pitching Staff:  5 of 10
Offense:  5 of 10
Bench:  5 of 10
Defense: 7 of 10
Minor League Grade: C
Divisional Finish: 3
Notes:  If anyone is interested in adding Yamil Veras go ahead and make an offer.    On offense they are fine, not the best and not the worst.  They have a couple really good players, one of whom is available, if you want to take on an albatross of a contract.  Truely there are worse contracts then that one, partly because Veras is good.  The key to beating this team is throwing a lefty at them.  The pitching staff is ok, there are better ones and there are worse ones.  It is good to see Mark Lui still hanging around.  In the minors the real highlight is a few of the pitching prospects.  There is not a lot to say about the offensive ones other than that they are offensive. Felipe Gonzalez is on the WW right now and may rejoin the pitching staff or get sent to the minors.

 Charlotte Clippers
 Season 19 Record: 84-78
Budget for players: $102M budgeted, $1m left
Pitching Staff:  3 of 10
Offense:  7 of 10
Bench:  7 of 10
Defense: 7 of 10
Minor League Grade: D
Divisional Finish: 1
Notes:  Josias Cortez is closing in on the all-time HR record and he has not declined enough yet for the record to be seen as out of reach. J.D. Golub could be improved upon in CF but other than that this is a solid team with the bat and with the glove. Mario DuBose should have better numbers than he does.  Duffy Westbrook is the SP5 which shows how good the staff could be.  The bullpen looks very good too.  The pitching prospects are fewer than some other teams and those who caught my eye in my first look through were revealed to have flaws when I looked beyond my primary scan.  Not many offensive prospects either.

Season 20 Preview: AL East

New York Crunch II
Season 19 Record: 76-86
Budget for players: $71m budgeted, 39 spent
Pitching Staff:  3 of 10
Offense:  5 of 10
Bench:  5 of 10
Defense: 6 of 10
Minor League Grade: A
Divisional Finish: 2
Notes:  The biggest hole on offense is the lack of a true power hitter.  There is some power there and Shawn Koskie is a player anyone would want but after him is a 34 year old rf on the decline and 24 year old catcher who is still developing. Rogers Weston is now 12 hits from 3500.  The defense is pretty strong. This pitching staff is going to see some ugliness.  Josh Moore was once the hottest prospect in the game, now he is finishing it up on an also ran.  Really the staff has some solid contributors but in all I count 7 of the 13 as players who probably shouldn't be in a major league pitching staff and certainly not all in the same one.  At least 13 positional prospects and 13 pitchers have a shot at making the majors and some of them will dominate.  This is the best minor league system I have seen from top to bottom.  When I did this team first I assumed they would finish fourth.  Then I did another team.

Indianapolis Inconceivables
Season 19 Record: 67-95
Budget for players: $58m with $13m left in cap space at the moment.
Pitching Staff:  3 of 10
Offense:  4 of 10
Bench:  4 of 10
Defense: 6 of 10
Minor League Grade: B
Divisional Finish: 3
Notes: Geoff Ruffin will be good one day.  The offense is a collection of average to below average players.  The only area where they will excel is SS defense.  The rest of the defense is fine.  The pitching staff has some decent prospects and some bad vets.  There are a few good prospects, Vladimir Reyes may be the best of them.  There are quite a few flawed prospects who look great until you notice that one rating that makes you take a pass.

 Scranton Coal Crackers
Season 19 Record: 77-85
Budget for players: $70m with $5m left in cap space at the moment.
Pitching Staff:  3 of 10
Offense:  4 of 10
Bench:  4 of 10
Defense: 9 of 10
Minor League Grade: D
Divisional Finish: 1
Notes:  The catchers are on the roster for their gloves and appear to be so bad with the bat you would want to DH for them and let the pitchers bat.  I am kidding of course.  One of them had an OPS over .800 last season in 200 likely platoon or fill in at bats.  The other guy was possibly the worst batter in the league and will only face lefties.  Rafael Santana is just like the one for the mets in the mid-80's. This offense is unbalanced, there is no middle ground.  The batters are either really good or really bad.  I think they will struggle to score.  The defense is very strong.  14 pitchers on this staff is probably 2 to many.  They are a good bunch of arms and with that defense behind them will keep Scranton in a lot of games. The best pitchers in the minors all struggle with control.  Timo Burgess is a mystery.  His projections look good to me but I also see no way he meets them from where he sits now.  The two best positional prospects are DHs and there are better aging vets on the FA market who can fill the role better than them.  This minor league system needs some work.  Although I am picking this team for first place I am not expecting a winning record.

 Baltimore Bandits
Season 19 Record: 49-113
Budget for players: $70m with $2.5m left in cap space at the moment.
Pitching Staff:  2 of 10
Offense:  3 of 10
Bench:  3 of 10
Defense: 7 of 10
Minor League Grade: D+
Divisional Finish: 4
Notes: No way Harold Cashman maintains that 100 speed platooning at catcher.  The defense meets or exceeds just about every reccomended rating.  The offense has two players with a VR over 70 and only 5 over 60.  They will struggle to score.  While we are bust ripping the offense the pitchers got jealous because they expected me to be harshest to them.  I understand why they feel that way but I am not going to beat a dead horse. Einar Ordonez says it best. Trevor Donovan is not too far off the all-time home run record, sadly he is toiling away in AAA.  He is also the second best positional prospect in the minors.  On the pitching side there were a couple possibilities.

Season 20 Preview: AL North

Syracuse Snow Belt
Season 19 Record: 99-63
Budget for players: $99m with $2m left in cap space at the moment.
Pitching Staff:  6 of 10
Offense:  7 of 10
Bench:  5 of 10
Defense: 7 of 10
Minor League Grade: C+
Divisional Finish: 1
Notes:  The on certainty in this league, Syracuse will win the division.  Last season was only the second time the team has not reached 100 wins in a season since the league began 20 seasons ago.  1b,3b, RF are all 34+ year old sluggers.  The defense is above average at C, SS and CF while below average at 2b and the corner OF positions.  The offense is driven by power and will hit plenty of HR.  The bench offers an offensive dropoff over the starters but a defensive upgrade.  Two true DH will platoon.Gail Latham is the highlight of the pitching staff.  6 members of the staff are 30+ years old.  The key beating them appears to be to load up with left handed bats.  This is a solid staff but not spectacular.  That said, no one gets as much from their pitchers as schedule1. The minor league system is incredibly deep considering the success of the franchise. 

 Ottawa Braves
Season 19 Record: 93-69
Budget for players: $85m with little room for movement.
Pitching Staff:  8 of 10
Offense:  6 of 10
Bench:  5 of 10
Defense: 9 of 10
Minor League Grade: D+
Divisional Finish: 2
Notes:  The team has some strong offensive performers.  Oswaldo Franco over a full season will add a few wins but hoping Shane Forrest will be anything other than mediocre is delusional.  The weak bats worry me more than the strong bats excite me.  The defense is the best I have reviewed so far.  The bench ios defensive insurance and there are no pinch hitters.  The pitchers are above average across the board.  I only see one guy I do not like and there are likely enough innings without him.  The minors are thin but there are a couple fringe guys.

 Cleveland Armpits
Season 19 Record: 91-71
Budget for players: $82M, about $20m in cap space.
Pitching Staff:  7 of 10
Offense:  7 of 10
Bench:  6 of 10
Defense: 4 of 10
Minor League Grade: C+
Divisional Finish: 3
Notes:  Only one catcher on the roster and he can only be expected to play about 75% of the games.  I assume the DH is a backup. Desi Arroyo is a ROY candidate and the Of is better than most.  The starters at the corner IF and OF spots have some defensive short comings and Arroyo's glove has room to grow.  The bench offers defense a few decent AB there as well.  The pitching staff is very good, a few all stars, but no dominating hall of famer.  Multiple pitching prospects and Peaches Knight is special.  The amazing thing about Knight is he was the 27th pick of the first round. No full time starters on the offensive side of things.

 Chicago Black Soxs
Season 19 Record: 88-74
Budget for players: $57m about 16 still available
Pitching Staff:  5 of 10
Offense:  7 of 10
Bench: 9 of 10
Defense: 7 of 10
Minor League Grade: B+ (the depth of arms was too good to overturn the lack of positional types)
Divisional Finish: 4
Notes:  This team has no rsotered players listed as primary 1b or 2b and the RF are not really corner OF.  Defense is a focus here.  The offense is pretty solid, no weaknesses.  The most difficult part is trying to figure out who plays where.  No real backup for SS, CF or C (the backup C is listed as a C but is truely a DH).  There are 4 players with 80 plus power or projected to at least.  On the mound Tony Plata is nice.  Past him there are some decent arms and a few #5 starter types.  This is where this team is a level below the other 3 in the division.  In the minors there are at least 13 arms that will one day be in the majors including some very good all-star and hall of fame potential players.  The offensive stockpile is meager however with 3 potential major leaguers and no all star types, unless you include Buddy Bacsik who was an all star at one point.

 This was the best division I have seen from top to bottom so far and really if you flipped my predictions would not be overly shocked, well despite the shock of someone other than Syracuse winning for the first time.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Season 20 Preview: NL West

Colorado Fighting Bell Peppers
Season 19 Record: 73-89
Budget for players: $93
Pitching Staff:  4 of 10
Offense:  5 of 10
Bench:  of 10
Defense:  of 10
Minor League Grade: C+
Divisional Finish: 3
Notes:  14 offensive players may lead to a taxed pitching staff in Coors.  There are 3 1b and a 2b who is a liability with his bat and glove.  The SS is a strength. P.T. Belliard could be interesting to watch.  The pitching staff is all starters, not a single natural reliever.  Three of them strike me as slightly above average or better past them I see some ugly flaws.  The interesting part of the season will be when the Bell Peppers fall out of contention and people start making offers for Pascual Duran who is an FA after the season and finishing out his $100 contract.  Piper Fischbach is the only offensive prospect worth looking to closely at but his projected overall, according to my projections, are skewed by a crazy range.  There are lots of major league caliber pitchers in the minors.  This team's salary projected for next year is $65m less than this year.  This does not account for the minimum wage guys or the arbitration guys but there are some substation contracts coming off the books.

Las Vegas Rat Pack
Season 19 Record:63-99
Budget for players: $33m
Pitching Staff:  4 of 10
Offense:  2 of 10
Bench:  2 of 10
Defense:  4 of 10
Minor League Grade: B-
Divisional Finish: 4
Notes: This team is going to struggle to score runs. Jose Toca is going to be the leading run producer.  The three ss are all really strong defensively and there are worse offensive ss then these guys.  After them however the defense is suspect.  There are 14 pitchers on the staff and there are going to be some long nights.  The staff as a whole is average but the back end is weak, see Josh Dixon as an example.  In the minors I see two pitching prospects who may stick for an extended time in the majors with one being an all star more than once in his career. On the offensive side a see a few prospects who will make it,  in fact I would say there are 4 guys now who offer improvements over the major league roster.

Fresno Grizzlies
Season 19 Record: 83-79
Budget for players: $82m
Pitching Staff:  6 of 10
Offense: 6 of 10
Bench: 4 of 10
Defense: 6 of 10
Minor League Grade: B
Divisional Finish: 1
Notes:  The postional players are pretty average across the board, no all stars but no schlups either with the exception being the CF.  If he starts in CF that is,Floyd Dixon is the alternative and would actually offer a defensive upgrade.  My Cy Young pick, Kevin Shigetoshi, is the highlight of the pitching staff.  Past him it is a roller coaster ride.  Pitching is a strength of the minor leagues as there are a ton of major league caliber arms.  On offense there are some decent guys who will help at the major league level.

Anaheim Ninja Turtles
Season 19 Record: 81-81
Budget for players: $88m
Pitching Staff:  4 of 10
Offense:  6 of 10
Bench: 7 of 10
Defense: 6 of 10
Minor League Grade: C
Divisional Finish: 2
Notes: The lineup is a bunch of platoons to maximize match-ups.  Julio Iglesias is my candidate for MVP this season.  The defense is pretty solid.  The SS is slightly below average defensively.  The staff has 2 solid starters and then some question marks.  A few solid pitching prospects then a few pitching prospects with one flaw or another.  Offensive prospects are about the same as pitching, there are few of them and they are not all star types but they can contribute at the ML level.