Monday, November 19, 2012

S11 Preview

Charleston River Dogs
This season should be titled, "A Season in Transition." 5 big contributors from last season's 98 win squad are gone via free agency which ganrered the River Dogs multiple draft picks in return.

The starting lineup still slooks formidable behind Enrique Canseco (All Star C), Milton Kramer (All Star 1B), and one of the top players in the league in 2B Bruce "I'm a Lover, not a Fighter" Casanova. The bullpen is deep and very talented and will be one of the tops in the league. However, the Pitching Rotation has taken a mighty beating and will indoubtedly go through many changes throughout the season as River Dogs management tries to bandaid over the situation and hope for the best.

The only reason for some optimism is the NL East is relatively weak. As weird as it sounds...this is the start of a rebuilding process, but we still have hopes to take the division.

Chicago Black Sox
So, we lost some key FAs in the off-season in Eddie Lloyd & Doug Robinson, but we were able to upgrade to Brian Ma & Alfredo Candelaria, so I am quite happy.

We also were able to select Rabbit Richard (love the name) in the Rule 5 to help out as a late inning defensive replacement and someone who can spell my starting ss when he needs some rest without falling off too far defensively.

Overall, I hope we can build on our trend upward as we improved by 13 games the year before and we have a young nucleus that is ready to contribute now.

Columbus Aeros
1 season early. That was the story from last season as I was building for this season but with the performance early on the aeros made a couple of late season trades to get into the playoffs. This year bill Buckner is ready to take over at 2nd base and lead off at the top of the line up and Sean stearns will start in rf to provide some more power to the heart of the line up. With the addition of Alex rios I feel the aeros have a 1,2,3 punch that will rival any staff in the league and with 1-2 short five game series I like the chances of estalella, rios, calvo, estalella, rios. Also this season will be the debut of my best ever diamond in the rough curt Murray. I am excited about the aeros chances and anything less than a league championship series exit at the end of the season will be a disappointment.

Las Vegas Bookies
Last season we were fortunate to be in the NL West division which saw us taking the division with an under .500 record. We made some improvements with our pitching, hiring Tyler Betancourt, Flash Hamil, Donald Cheng, and Tomas Ozuna but lost out on some of the bigger name pitchers as management decided an out of town wedding was more important the last 2 days of free agency (the GM is under investigation and may be possibly fired if this leads to another losing record). The good news is we are in the middle of a youth movement so to make the playoffs while getting younger shows we have some potential. Last season's NL Rookie Houston Reese is expected to carry the offense along with Carlos Baez. We have a lot of money left over so may be looking to make some moves yet later on in the season depending on where we see the team headed.

Little Rock Rollers
It appears as though season 11 will be a rebuilding season for this Little Rock team.
I took over the team last season with approximately 60 games left, the arbitration period had already passed and unfortunately lost 2 quality starting pitchers due to them being taken to arb. for a third and final time....
Some of the positives in losing Jesse Blowers, Alex Rios, JT Miles and Chris Torres has been receiving compensation picks (6 total first round picks, and 9 through the first 88) and the other positive is having very little money tied up in contracts. Advanced scouting was set lower than I like as it was only set at $2 million last season so therefore this season I could only raise it to $6 mill. so I'm hoping I will be able to make some good decisions in the upcoming draft to benefit from all the picks.

Los Angeles Capitalists
This season should be the start of a long, uphill battle for the Capitalists. After finishing last season in a tie for last place, it became apparent that the team as it stood could not compete for a title, and would need to retool and rebuild in the off-season. That ushered in a transition that saw the club's top two starting pitchers get traded away for prospects, kicking off the rebuilding era. Los Angeles will hope to win at least 60 games this season, with added emphasis on maintaining a high enough level of play to avoid the anti-tanking regulations.

Louisville Steamboats
Franchise leader in home runs, LF Kevin Zhang (133) looks to anchor this rebuilt offense. Even though the Steamboats hit a lot of home runs last season, runs were still at a premium due to a lack of people getting on-base. Several players were jettisoned in an attempt to make this team (10 new position players, 7 new pitchers) more competitive on a game in and game out basis. 3B Jorge Marichal, 2B Chris Torres, 1B Tommie Farley, CF Josh Singleton, RF Ismael Lopez, and C Dan Mercedes round out the offense that looks to put guys on base and put the ball in play. We brought in some new pitchers as ace Al Castro comes in from Charleston in a big-time trade which saw us move last season’s draft to add a quality pitcher. Stalwars Fonzie Becker, Hiram Sanders, and Rich Bonds combine with J.D. Dixon to form a vastly improved rotation. The bullpen should be better with Yamil Zorrilla being the primary long man and Logan Putnam and Willie Dunston joining Curtis Newson to work the 7-8-9 innings and hopefully bring home some wins.

Montgomery Hornets
The Montgomery Hornets continue to try and rebuild their historically horrific franchise for the future while remaining competitive at the major league level. Montgomery has never finished with a record above .500, and their 72 wins last season were the 3rd highest win total in franchise history.
Season 10 All Star, Hal Thompson, who hit .317 with 40 HRs, 108 RBIs with an OPS of .989 will continue to pace the offense. Former #6 overall pick Darrin Rossy hopes to improve upon his sophomore big league season in which he hit 20 HRs and stole 20 bases. The newly acquired Maximo Collier will replace the aging Ed Kelly at 2B and last season’s Rule 5 pick-up Terry Rivers has some big shoes to fill, as he’ll take over DH duties from Victor Santana.
The Hornets spent $29.5 million to land free-agent pitcher Darrell Taylor who has 119 wins, a 1.19 WHIP and a 3.56 ERA in 292 big league starts. Taylor will anchor the rotation with 24 year old Victor Alomar, entering his third full season in the majors and last year’s surprising Rich Lawrence who had a 1.39 WHIP and 3.92 ERA in 32 starts. Montgomery is hoping the 35 year old free agent pitcher Jimmie Roth will provide some stability to a very shaky bullpen.
The Hornets are looking to improve on last season’s 72 wins, but any hopes of a wild card spot are very far-fetched.

New Orleans Zydeco
The Zydeco are in the early stages of rebuilding and likely won't challenge for a division title this season. They chose not to sign their departing free agent position players Bingo Jepsen and Ismael Lopez, and will fill those gaps with young, untested prospects. Their rotation remains decent with Jesus Diaz, Wayne Roosevelt, and Zachrey Hogan. Their bullpen has some good young talent. But there isn't enough firepower in the lineup to make a serious run this season. They're still a few seasons away.

New York Highlanders
The Highlanders should regain their competitive edge this year primarily based upon a pitching staff that is now deeper than last year’s solid group. The addition of FA, veteran starter, Sherman Feldman gives the rotation needed depth, while the bullpen remains strong both in all respects. Last year’s issue of anemic bats was addressed by trading for veteran 3B, Al Chantres and the young, dynamic CF, Renyel Cortes. In addition, hard hitting Matt Reynolds will see his first full season in LF. By adding these new faces to an excellent middle infield, veterans Enrique Ordonez (RF) and Scott Gorecki (1B), together with a solid defensive catching tandem NY, now has all we need to be a contender this year. On the farm, young catcher Tommy Orr, 2B Jamie Pote and pitchers Tony Greene and Benny Gregg are almost ready for prime time.

Seattle Pilots
It's rebuilding time in Seattle. Last year was a year of great pitching and absolutely no offense. Ownership wanted to rebuild to have a more balanced team. So we shipped off our two stud pitchers, Victor Castillo and Erik Stone, for fomer #2 overall pick CF Carl Ripken and SS Cesar Olivo. The long term salary relief will go a long way towards rebuilding. In the mean time, we've signed Jesse Blowers in Free Agency. He and JP Diaz will hold down the fort until the prospects arrive. There are more moves to be made, so we'll wait to see where this team is at the end of the year.

Monday, October 29, 2012

S10 World Series Preview

AL – Cheyenne Gunslingers
The Gunslingers are making their first World Series appearance after finishing second in their division and winning a wild card berth for the second straight season.
The Road to the Series
Defeated #4 Texas, 3-1
Defeated #1 Florida, 3-0
Defeated #6 Richmond, 4-3
2nd in Runs Scored
Cheyenne is led by three 30+ home run hitters in LF Geraldo Olivares (34HR, 120RBI, .305/.381/.560), DH/1B Pedro Johnson (34HR, 108RBI, .289/.382/.502), and C Mel Mays (30HR, 92RBI, .315/.393/.555). They were 180/248 in stolen bases, led by RF Donatello Burkett with 43.
3rd in ERA
Led by 17-game winner, Shep Blanks (17-5, 197.0IP, 2.42ERA, 1.08WHIP), the pitching staff is strong. They’re not going to strike out a lot of guys, but they will get you out. They boast 4 double digit winners. They allowed the second fewest home runs in the AL.
3rd in Fielding Percentage
SS Rickie Burgess was the defensive catalyst for the team, recording 33  “plus” plays and participating in 104 double plays. The team as a whole managed a .986 fielding percentage with 82 good plays and 27 bad plays.

NL - #2 Cincinnati Battlin’ Redlegs
Cincinnati won their 2nd straight division championship (5th overall in 10 seasons) en route to their 3rd World Series appearance. The good news for Battlin’ Redleg fans…their previous 2 trips ended with the team hoisting the trophy over their heads.
The Road to the Series
Defeated #6 Columbus, 3-1
Defeated #1 Charleston, 4-0
#2 in Runs Scored
Boasting an incredible 5 players with .300+ batting averages (over 350 AB), Cincinnati is not so much led by any one player, as they are a team that gets things done. 10 players finished with double-digit taters. If you’re going to pick one player to single out above the rest, it’s young RF Al Mondesi (26HR, 113RBI, .317/.376/.521).
#1 in ERA
Led by Cy Young Finalist Julian Tejeda (19-8, 221.1IP, 3.42ERA, 1.17 WHIP) Cincy boasted five 10-game winners, and a closer who was nearly lights out in Dario Keefe (50G, 33/37SV, 49.2IP, 1.99ERA, 0.95WHIP). This staff boasted the second fewest walks in the NL.
T-#2 in Fielding Percentage
Cincinnati was a solid fielding team, won’t give you many outs and won’t take many outs. They’ll make you earn your runs the old-fashioned way.

What we’ve got is a staff in Cincinnati that will give up home runs and a team that can hit them in Cheyenne. On the flip side, Cincinnati can hit home runs, but Cheyenne is stingy with the long ball. Although there doesn’t appear to be many scenarios that end in Cheyenne winning, I’ve got a feeling and am picking Cheyenne in 7.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

New Rule

After a lot of thought I've decided to add a new rule to the worlds I run. It does not affect gameplay at all so I am not putting it up for discussion or a vote. I spend a lot of time and effort to run these HBD worlds. I feel like I do a really good job and anyone can see, most HBD worlds are not run well AND take a lot time to fill during rollover. I've had some bad experiences lately with a couple owners who took over midseason from another owner who chose to leave and then refused to do the same when they did not want to stick around. 

All HBD worlds have to deal with the churn of owner. I recently dropped the one world I was in where I did not commish because of time constraints. After 40+ seasons of running worlds, I've found that it EASILY is the most beneficial to the world for a replacement owner to be found immediately once someone decides they are moving on. Inevitably the team is not taken as well care of and/or long term decisions are made by the outgoing owner which the incoming owner has to deal with.

The veteran owners whom I like to attract to these worlds almost uniformly prefer to take over the current budget instead of starting from the standard neutral budget.

Moving forward, if you choose to not come back next season, then you are open to transferring your team early. Preferably I would like that to happen immediately once the roll call is taken, however I understand each of us pays for a full season and if you demand to stick it out through the 162 game regular season then perfectly understandable. Furthermore, NO LONG TERM decisions are to be made by the outgoing owner without prior approval from the commissioner. This primarily is targeted at re-signing outgoing free agents, but trades will not be allowed either. 

Very very rarely does an owner from a playoff squad leave one of my worlds. However, in those cases the incoming owner will send a gift certificate to make up for the credits you will be missing out on by transferring your team. 

To sum up...the positives are huge for when a new owner comes in before rollover. They get to take their time and analyze their team, they get to promote/demote minor leagues, they get to make free agent decisions, and they get to inherit the current budget. This also helps the other owners in the world as it is MUCH easier to recruit a new owner when they have this option and we don't have to wait for someone to enter the world after rollover.

Sorry for the essay, but I wanted everyone to see I have thought long and hard about this. This rule will make the worlds better and make my job easier.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Season 10 Draft Review

1.       P Henderson Davenport (PHI)
Owner Comments:
I was shooting for next year's #2. It backfired. The guy I got won't make the big leagues…well he might for me because my team stinks so bad, but you know what I mean. If I would have picked the the best player on my board it would have been the guy at #24.
hurricane384’s take:
Solid closer, might be a little early for a closer, especially one that won't put up that many innings and won't be dominant.
2.       P Peter Gray (ARI)
Owner Comments:

With the second overall pick of the draft, the Arizona Firebirds selected a dynamic 18 year old, right-handed pitcher, Peter Gray out of Oak Park High School in the surburb of Chicago. At times during his senior year, Gray was ranked as high as #1 on Baseball America’s 2012 mid-season list.However, rumors of him committing to multiple D-I schools such as Pepperdine, UCLA, and Arizona, caused him to start slipping down in the 1st round of the professional draft. The Firebirds saw him still sitting there at the No.2 overall pick and did not waste time scooping him up and making Arizona his permanent new home. Gray possesses outstanding control and 4 pitches in his arsenal including a very well developed 4-seam fastball,a nasty 12-6 curve which he can throw equally effective to hitters on either side of the plate as well as a developing changeup. While he does not throw heat, some scouts say that with his mechanics and ways he studies hitters as a young pitcher,he has top of the rotation potential. He could even challenge last season's 1st Rounder (5th overall) Al Owen as the top prospect in the Arizona farm system.
hurricane384’s take:
Good pick who should be able to anchor a staff for seasons to come.
3.       P Alex Suzuki (LA)
Owner Comments:
He was #1 on my draft board and so we felt very fortunate to be able to land him at 3. As far as I can see he's got it all, stamina/durability, control, splits, and velocity. If he comes anywhere near where his projections are he will be a bona fide ace for seasons to come.
hurricane384’s take:
Although he won't be able to get real deep into games, he has the potential to be a star.
4.       2B Denny Spencer (MNT)
Owner Comments:
The Hornets are extremely pleased to get Denny Spencer at #4,he was actually the #1 rated player on our board going into the draft. Since he's arrived in camp, we've tempered our expectations on his range & glove growth, but he looks like he can handle right handed pitching better than we expected,so we'll take that trade off. His contact, power & batting eye are exceptional, and as long as he approaches his defensive projections we won't have a problem playing him at 2B.He should hit around .300 with 30-40 HRs and have an OBP above .400 every season. Best case scenario he is a perenial all-star at 2B, worst case is he's a gold glove left fielder. In either case he will surely smash the **** out of the ball.
hurricane384’s take:
He's not likely to be a superstar, but still should be a good COF for the Hornets.
5.       SS Alan Lombard (ELP)
Owner Comments:
Lombard has a chance to be a .280 hitter with 20/20 as a possibility at SS. He has to stay healthy, which is a huge concern, but if he does, will be the starting SS in about 3 years.
hurricane384’s take:
If he progresses to his projections, he's going to be a silver slugger, gold glove, all-star SS…a steal.
6.       SS Gregg Hill (LAA)
Owner Comments:
A shortstop who will probably play another position in the majors. He has the potential to be a good, though not great, all around offensive producer. He does project to have the ability to play solid defense. I expected to gain more from my draft position; but, Hill will be solid.
hurricane384’s take:
He doesn't have the range to be a SS, but he can be a solid 3B who can hit some.
7.       SS Germany Fleming (CH2)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Quite possibly the steal of the draft, if Fleming develops properly, he'll compete with Lombard for the silver slugger and be a consistent all-star.
8.       P Bryan Dunham (CH2)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Chicago got a legit SS and a very good closer with back-to-back picks.
9.       SS Phillip Latham (LR)
Owner Comments:
Latham is a player capable of playing a great SS, who has the ratings to be a #2 hitter. He lacks power, but his contact and speed will make him a good OBP player,and could do some damage on the basepaths. Was he worthy of the #9 pick? Probably not. However, my scouting was extremely bad for both HS and College pitching, so I am happy to get him. I had him as my #2 player.
hurricane384’s take:

Continuing a dangerous run of SS, this guy should be very good as well. Should be an all-star.
10.   P Lance Gardner (NO)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Should develop into a #3 starter with #1/#2 potential.
11.   P Stuart Gorgen (CLE)
Owner Comments:
While Gorgen was picked by the previous GM, he is currently viewed as a hard worker with great control, good velocity, with a number of out pitches, should be a solid #2 starter and depending on his development could push for #1.
hurricane384’s take:
Will struggle against RHB, but should still be a good pitcher.
12.   2B Ed Hall (SEA)
Owner Comments:
He was my #4 overall, I didnt see many studs. Great range, below average glove. sold hitter.
hurricane384’s take:
Hall has good power, and will be good offensively. Not much of a defender.
13.   SS Shawn Roth (CSP)
Owner Comments:
The organization felt that we needed another top notch bat. As long as his glove develops, Shawn Roth will be a very good hitter at a premium position. You can't ask for more based on our draft position.
hurricane384’s take:
Good offensive player with good splits. He might be able to hold down SS if his offense develops.
14.   SS Nick Snow (ROC)
Owner Comments:
The Rochester front office will continue to undergo changes as the new owners look to clean up this organization.These changes will now carryover to our scouts and draft day personal after the selection of Nick Snow in the first round. Snow might make the ML roster someday as a defensive player but that is about it.We were hoping to land Stuart Gorgen or Ed Hall who were taken just a few picks earlier. The selection of Snow most certainly delayed the already slow turnaround here in Rochester.

hurricane384’s take:
Projects to be a solid 2B but definitely won't be playing SS.
15.   CF Francis Hutton (JAC)
Owner Comments:
Excellent speed, okay splits - it all comes down to how well he'll meet his projections...
hurricane384’s take:
Lacks the range for CF, but he's fast and solid offensively.
16.   SS Jack Jurrjens (FLA)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Good defensively, although he lacks a bit in glove. He's going to be a very good offensive SS.
17.   P Brent Harding (CLB)
Owner Comments:
I got the guy number five on my board. Best available impact player I could get and see. I am very happy to have my closer of the future…today.
hurricane384’s take:
Lacks great stamina, but should be able to come in and throw quite a few good innings.
18.   CF Bernie Shermann (NO)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Solid range with tremendous power and a good eye. Good speed. Interesting player.
19.   P Nathan May (LOU)
Owner Comments:
The #6 player on my board, I am excited to add May. He might not develop into an ace, but should definitely be a good pitcher for years to come. He will get lots of ground balls and limit walks, and that's all you can ask for in Louisville.
tk’s take:May has great control and above average splits which will be helped out by two great pitches.
20.   P Charlie Woods (LOU)
Owner Comments:
The #10 player on my board, he actually might turn out to be better than May. He'll be able to throw lots of innings. His vsR worries me some as well as the fact that he only has 3 pitches, but those pitches are good, so we shall see.
tk’s take:Woods is nearly similiar as he has great control and his first two pitches are excellent. He'll be more dominant against lefties than May perhaps.
21.   2B Amos Willis (TOR)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Projects to be a very good lead-off hitter who should be able to hold down 2B.
22.   P Heath Barney (NY2)
Owner Comments:
Well, at 22 I was pretty happy to get Heath Barney. While he does not project to have overpowering splits,they will be above average. When ready, he will throw 5 pitches with great control. His health and makeup are as good as it gets. He’s already pitching well at High A and I think he’ll be a good middle to back of the rotation guy at the ML level.
hurricane384’s take:
Lacks great splits, but definitely could make up for that by not walking many and having a couple very good pitches.
23.   P O.T. Gardner (PIT)
Owner Comments:
O.T. Gardner his stam and contol should be good along w/his splits. His pitches show some concern with only 1 good pitch. Hoping he can be a #3 starter.
hurricane384’s take:
Should be a good pitcher. Throws relatively hard and induces quite a few groundballs.
24.   2B Mitchell Franco (LV)
Owner Comments:
I hope he doesn't sign; still holding out asking $7M and that's all I have left. Risking him signing so that I can pick up a comp pick next season and use the money to sign the next two draft picks and maybe pick up a Int'l yet.
hurricane384’s take:
Should be a solid option at 2B while holding down the lead-off spot for seasons to come.
25.   P Alex Peters (ATL)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Not much of a pick here as my suspicion is that Atlanta is going for a compensatory pick next season.
26.   P Pat MacDougal (NB)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

May go onto college, but if he doesn't New Britain may have found themselves an anchor for their bullpen.
27.   C Ken Melancon (CHR)
Owner Comments:
Relatively happy considering the weakness of the draft combined with choosing so late in the first round. Should be a good hitting catcher…hopefully his PC progresses enough to warrant a shot behind the plate as we believe a great bat back there can overcome defensive inefficiencies
hurricane384’s take:
Although he doesn't have great durability, he should be a solid platoon option as well as a good play-off C.
28.   P Bryce Pierre (CHY)
Owner Comments:
With the 28th pick, the Gunslingers selected Bryce Pierre ,a reliever that will be able to eat some innings and should be almost impervious to injury. Our scouts see him as an 80 OVR rating with excellent control and 2 good pitches, which should suffice for bullpen work.
hurricane384’s take:
His splits aren't great, but he definitely should make for a solid option out of the pen.
29.   P Otis Walker (ATL)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Lacks great splits, but has the durability and stamina to be a real workhorse for a bullpen.
30.   CF Darren Simmons (OTT)
Owner Comments:
In an extremely weak draft, I was very happy to land Simmons whom I had ranked 9th overall in the draft. He is projected to be a gold glove CF with 90+ range andglove. Also, he has great speed and basestealing ability. His bat is rather pedestrian, but his defense and speed more than compensate. I think he will be a mainstay in CF for many years.
hurricane384’s take:
Solid defensive CF. Has tremendous speed and should be good enough offensively to make a difference.
31.   LF Lonny Tice (HON)
Owner Comments:
Really happy to get him that late in the first round…doesn't project to be a star, but should be at least an average regular on a playoff contender.
hurricane384’s take:
Solid offensively, he won't be a star, but definitely can contribute.
32.   P Domingo Lee (LR)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Doesn't have great splits, but won't walk many and should keep the ball in the park. Could be a workhorse.
33.   P Hal Tanner (JAC)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:

Terrible vsR but has a couple good pitches and won't walk many people.
34.   LF Rich Swift (CIN)
Owner Comments:
hurricane384’s take:
Tremendous get here…He's got solid offensive numbers including a great CON. Should be good.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Top Free Agents

1.       Jean Leonard
Top-notch power and contact, he struggles with consistently driving the ball. Not much for calling games, but can throw a runner out.
2.       Vladimir Osoria
An offensive player, he dominates LHP and has solid power, contact, and vsR. Good eye. Weak defensively.
3.       Darrell Garciaparra
Another solid offensive player who dominates LHP, he struggles against RHP. Calls a decent game, but lacks a good arm. Good durability, but has health concerns.

First Base
1.       Jamey Petkovsek
One of the better offensive players available, he doesn’t have many weaknesses, but isn’t truly elite with any of his ratings.
2.       Bret Maas
Great contact, and is better against RHP. Good eye. Solid all-around offensively. Really weak defensively, ideal DH candidate.
3.       Rico Dotel
Solid offensive player with a great eye. Has a strong arm for a 1B/DH, but doesn’t have the range.

Second Base
1.       Amos Cole
Lacks ideal range, but will make plays on the balls he gets to. Won’t carry a team offensively, but shouldn’t embarrass them either.
2.       Santo Guerrero
Good range and solid glove, but a weak arm. He won’t carry a team on offense. Could be a candidate for a utilityman.
3.       Darrel Lawrence
Isn’t very good defensively, with a weak, inaccurate arm and lacking the range or glove to make a difference. Hangs his hat on his power. Struggles with RHP.

Third Base
1.       Matt McKnight
Solid defensively. Decent speed. He’s not going to carry you offensively, but makes good contact with a decent eye and some power.
2.       Steven Griffin
Dominates LHP and won’t be embarrassed against RHP. Average power, contact, and eye. Lacks ideal range, but makes up for it with a good glove and accurate arm.
3.       Louis Taylor
Hits LHP better than RHP and is solid offensively. Has a top-notch glove and accurate arm, but struggles with his range and getting much on the throw.

1.       Corey Byrd
Great at making contact with some good power, he makes his hay against LHP. Struggles mightily against RHP. Great eye. Slow as molasses, but is a good defender.
2.       Mike Payne
Solid offensively, he hits LHP better than RHP. Lacks ideal range and glove, but can be solid in a pinch.
3.       Gio Jacquez
Will make a lot of contact, but doesn’t drive the ball real well. Decent eye. His range isn’t great, but he has a strong arm and good glove.

Left Field
1.       Ron Stocker
Average at making contact he has good power. He’s a solid defender, able to get to most balls and make the play too. Great eye.
2.       Albert Garces
Solid across the board, Garces can definitely work the count with his great eye. Solid defensively, but won’t be mistaken for a defensive juggernaut either.
3.       Jackie Bell
Good power and good against RHP, he’s got an average eye. Not good defensively.

Center Field
1.       Hector Milligan
Lacks ideal range but has a solid glove. He hits for a good average, with average power. Solid at driving the ball. Solid eye.
2.       Bunny Cashner
Not the ideal range, but a good glove. Good speed and baserunning instincts. Makes lots of contact and is really good against RHP. Average eye.
3.       Trenidad Cruz
Good range and glove with a very good, strong arm. Doesn’t excel offensively, but is very fast.

Right Field
1.       Jorge Marichal
Very good against RHP and a good eye, he’s solid offensively. Might be one of the best defensive RF I’ve seen with good range and a tremendous arm.
2.       Matty Bailey
Makes his name offensively. Doesn’t strike out much and will walk quite a bit. Good glove defensively, but everything else is average to below average.
3.       Abdullah Peterson
Drives the ball well, when he makes contact. Weak defensively but has a solid arm.

1.       Alex Estalella
A LHP who has 3 high quality pitches to go along with great control. Doesn’t have the ideal velocity, but does induce some GBs. Keeps the ball out of the hitting zone on a consistent basis.
2.       Erick Stone
Good control, better against RHB than LHB. Will strike out a lot of guys with his high velocity. Has 4 very quality pitches.
3.       Roberto Beltre
Good control. Solid at keeping the ball out of the hitting zone. Will not get a lot of groundballs. Solid 1-3 pitches. Lacks the velocity for that high-leverage strikeout.

1.       Alfredo Miranda
Has tremendous control and dominates RHB. Great pitches 1-2, but weak 3&4. Good velocity. Lacks the ideal durability and stamina.
2.       Carlos Cervantes
Isn’t great at keeping the ball out of the hitting zone, but does not walk many. Has some pitches, but doesn’t have great velocity.
3.       Vic Francisco
Good stamina/durability combination. Keeps the ball out of the hitting zone. Doesn’t have that one dominating pitch. Lacks velocity. Good control.

Monday, July 30, 2012

World Series Preview (S9)

#3 (NL) Charleston River Dogs
91-71; Def. New York 3-0; Def. Atlanta 3-2; Def. Ottawa 4-3.
#4 Runs Scored; #4 ERA; #3 Fldg %
Winners of the NL East for the 5th year in a row, Charleston sends an offense led by 1B Milton Kramer (.333/.467/.541, 24HR, 100 RBI, 107 R), 2B Bruce Casanova (.293/.354/.594, 44 HR, 126 RBI, 109 R, 43/48 SB), C Enrique Canseco (.290/.364/.531, 27 HR, 91 HR, 62 R) and 3B Eddie Black (.263/.366/.341, 40/44 SB, 100 R). This offense is one that is top-heavy, but also built to not strike out much, having the 5th fewest strikeouts.
                The pitching staff is led by 17-game winner Tyler Betancourt (17-6, 210.1 IP, 163 K, 1.07 WHIP, 2.65 ERA), Willie Oliva (16-9, 215.2 IP, 216 K, 1.10 WHIP, 2.59 ERA), Al Castro (18-10, 214.1 IP, 177 K, 1.25 WHIP, 3.74 ERA) in the rotation and a solid bullpen led by Marcus Burns (105.1 IP, 11/14 SV, 1.25 WHIP, 3.84 ERA) and Dean Matthews (109.2 IP, 11/17 SV, 1.34 WHIP, 4.02 ERA).

#1 (AL) Syracuse Orange
106-56; Def. Richmond 3-1; Def Texas 4-0
#2 Runs Scored; #3 ERA; #4 Fldg %
                Winners of the AL North for the 2nd time, Syracuse’s offense is led by some big boppers as 3 players eclipsed the 30 home run mark, DH Gill Williams Jr (.295/.368/.608, 40 HR, 126 RBI, 107 R), LF Todd Liefer (.260/.330/.520, 40 HR 98 RBI, 100 R), and C Sam Jordan (.282/.35/.505, 31 HR, 114 RBI, 78 R). 5 players knocked in 98 or more runs, while 8 players scored 78 or more runs.
                A top-notch pitching staff saw 10 players win 6 or more games. Jerome Brocail (18-9, 224.0 IP, 178 K, 1.27 WHIP, 4.30 ERA) and Dave Bellhorn (16-11, 220.2 IP, 146 K, 1.17 WHIP, 3.26 ERA) led the rotation, while the bullpen was anchored by Jim Phillips (118.2 IP, 11/13 SV, 83 K, 1.37 WHIP, 4.17 ERA), Willie Dunston (57.1 IP, 4/12 SV, 51 K, 1.13 WHIP, 4.55 ERA) and Tony Moreno (57.0 IP, 13/14 SV, 46 K, 1.32 WHIP, 1.89 ERA).

                This should be an awesome World Series as 2 of the top teams in the world battle it out. Syracuse has the edge offensively, while Charleston is going to look for their elite pitching staff to play spoiler. I look for Syracuse to take this series in 7 games.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Season 8 Draft Review

1.       RF Michel Miro (LA)
One of the better power hitters in the draft, Miro is average at making contact. He’s got a good eye and solid splits. He’s got decent durability. Good range, poor glove, and a very good arm for RF.
crb2 says: Michel Miro probably wasn't the sexiest overall number 1 pick. I would have preferred to grab a future star up the milddle. But factoring in both the potential and where he is right now, I felt that when all was said and done he would achieve the highest ratings of any position player in the draft.
hurricane384’s take: Miro is going to be a good player, although his contact is going to hold him back some…still a very good pick here.
2.       SS Robert Miller (MNT)
Solid across the board defensively. Above average contact and power. Dominates LHP, solid against RHP. Fast and durable with a good eye.
tbone66 says: Robert Miller should be a decent hitter and should have good defense but maybe not as a SS
hurricane384’s take: I like Miller. He might never win a gold glove, but he definitely will compete for a silver slugger should he hit his projections.
3.       LF Houston Reese (NY2)
Below average against RHP and a below average eye. Tremendous contact and power. Good against LHP. Lacks ideal glove, but decent range and arm. Durable and fast.
abesmem says: Well, I really love my first pick (3rd overall). I had Houston Reese rated number 1 on my board. He projects to be the best hitter I've ever had with power(93 projected), a 100 rating on contact, 98 speed, great glove for 1B and very solid on all the intangibles. Very happy with the pick. He's starting out in Low A ball.
hurricane384’s take: I would like to see his vRH and eye be higher, but taken as a whole, this is a good pick.
4.       2B Bob Jones (ELP)
Lacks ideal range, glove, and arm for 2B. Good power, good splits, good eye. Durable and fast.
BastanRedsox says: He was 2nd on my draft board, prob going to be a left fielder for me. Nice power/speed combo that will be a high avg guy from .290-.320. Overall a solid major leaguer but not a star to build around.
hurricane384’s take: Bastan is right, he’s going to have to go to the corners, but you’re not giving up anything offensively by doing that.
5.       SS Steve Piper (FLA)
Good contact, solid power and splits. Solid eye. Lacks ideal range and arm accuracy, but has a great glove and a strong arm.
ajwalton says: Florida was happy to pick up their both their top-rated position player and their top-rated pitcher with the 5th and 13th pick. Piper looks like he'll have a long career as a ML shortstop.
hurricane384’s take: Piper doesn’t have the defense I like at SS, but with his offense it’d be worth playing him there.
6.       2B William Buckner (CLB)
Good range, good glove. Solid arm. Very fast. Durable. Great contact, good power, good eye. Splits are average.
anml34 says: I was glad to get bill Buckner with my first pick although scouting says he might be a fielding liability.
hurricane384’s take: I’d plug Buckner in at CF and be very happy for 10 seasons.
7.       LHP Buzz Stechschulte (LR)
Great control, good stamina/durability. Good splits. 3 good pitches. Ground ball pitcher. Lacks velocity.
nesman says: If he hits his projections, should make a solid # 3, maybe # 2 starter. Will eat a lot of innings with his high stamina projection.
hurricane384’s take: For being the #7 pick, this is a high quality pick.
8.       SS Dante Crummack (PHI)
Unsigned. I’ll turn it over to russ33b for his comments.
russ33b says: Overall, the Freedom are content with their first round draft pick, but not ecstatic. With the team owner out of town for from the time the players declared for the draft until after the picks were made the whole job was left to the GM. At least he didn't completely blow it. I would have taken any of the 3 guys taken after me before I took Crummack though. Supposing Dante Crummack gets his act together and decides to sign... he should end up as our 2b or 3b of the future. He'll never be an everyday player... probably 120-130 starts or so a year, but he has some decent plate skills. The highlight of the draft actually appears to be Peter Gray all the way in the 6th round. If he turns out to be what my scouts think he will... he's a huge steal for so late of a pick.
9.       C A.J. Dupler (OTT)
Good arm. Solid game-caller. Great contact, good power. Dominates LHP, solid against RHP. Fast for a C. Lacks ideal durability. Good eye.
mlhutch says: I had him pegged as the 3rd best position player in the draft. I value defense and Dupler's combination of defense and bat put him high on the list. His durability will limit him somewhat but he will be a great everyday player. I put a premium on the catcher position for an NL team so he is another critical piece for the Ottawa resurgence.
hurricane384’s take: Good pick. Durability is a concern, but his offense is worth figuring it out.
10.   LHP Patrick Moore (NB)
Very good splits. Great control. Great velocity and groundball ability. Very good pitch combination. Good stamina/durability.
mikejuggalo had no comment.
hurricane384’s take: Hate taking RP here, but it’s a very good pick, so it should be worth it.
11.   LF Shawn Brooks (CLE)
12.   RHP Ed Watkins (PIT)
Lacks control. Good stamina/durability. Good velocity. Good GB. Splits are good. Good pitch combination.
cbf88 had no comment.
hurricane384’s take: If his control gets to where it is projected, this could pay off big-time as he has the talent to be a good pitcher.
13.   P John Robinson (FLA)
Has an average pitch combination. Lacks ideal stamina. Good control. Good splits. Great velocity. Decent GB.
ajwalton says:
Robinson should be a solid 2-3 starter.
hurricane384’s take: Solid pick, not flashy. Could be a good pitcher though.
14.   P Cristian McCartney (ATL)
Solid pitch combination. Good control. Good splits. GB pitcher. Good velocity.
mr_gone had no comment.
hurricane384’s take: This is another solid pick.
15.   P Dennis Rigdon (CHY)
Lacks ideal control. Decent stamina/durability. Solid splits. Great velocity. Solid pitch combination. GB pitcher.
byers61 says: Rigdon has average control, but the rest of the numbers look good: great splits, velocity, and three decent pitches. His stamina says he will serve best as a long reliever/spot starter.
hurricane384’s take: You’re getting to the point in the 1st round where you can’t be pick. Rigdon will likely have some outstanding seasons as a LR and other seasons where his lack of control gets the best of him.
16.   1B Archie Van Hatten (TEX)
elixerr says: he still needs to sign, then depending on how much the projections go down because of the stupid rule of not being able to max out scouting budgets when you take over a team. He could be an absolute stud hitter or a run of the mill LF. Time will tell
17.   P Ajax Rolls (ARI)
Good stamina/durability. Great control. Solid splits. Good pitch combination. Lacks velocity. Solid GB.
cincystephen says: I had him rated 5th on my board. I thought the pitching was week from what i could see, but i'm a Pitching, pitching, pitching kind of guy. Not the best verse lefties, but good control, good vs righties and four good pitches with the first pitch scouting telling me it will be around 90. very good make up and patience telling me he should develop close to my high school scouts projects for an 18 year old. I think he will be a solid starter for a 17th pick.
hurricane384’s take: I like this pick. He could be a definite contributor.
18.   CF Dario Kennedy (TOR)
Good range and glove. Good durability. Solid contact, power. Solid splits and eye. Decent speed.
mtorabdaddy had no comment.
hurricane384’s take: I’d love to have this guy in my system with this pick. He could lock down the CF position defensively and not hurt the team on offense.
19.   P P.T. Mesa (CH2)
Lacks ideal durability, but has good stamina. Great control. Good splits. Good velocity. Good GB pitcher. Great pitch combination.
mamidu says: Very excited about getting Mesa at #19. I feel that he can be a future #1. He has 1 dominate pitch a very good one and 2 above average ones. His splits aren't great, but his great control should make up for that with his velocity and he is a ground ball pitcher to boot.
hurricane384’s take: Good job with this pick. Mesa could definitely be good down the road.
20.   C Lenny Flores (SEA)
Doesn’t have ideal arm accuracy, but a decent arm strength. Lacks ideal durability. Average game caller. Great power. Good contact. Dominates LHP. Average against RHP. Great eye.
gerald007 had no comment.
hurricane384’s take: He’s a good hitter, who misses on the ability to be completely elite due to his relative inability to hit RHP.
21.   P Johnny Miller (JAC)
Good durability/stamina. Great control, velocity, and GB. Solid pitch combination. Solid against LHB, struggles against RHB.
quackup says: I'd be happier if his lefty/righty splits were stronger, but he has excellent control, especially for a groundball pitcher. We'll see what develops...
hurricane384’s take: Miller has potential, but the vsR scares me.
22.   CF Douglas Sutcliffe (LAA)
Lacks ideal arm and range. Average power, struggles at making contact. Solid against LHP but struggles against RHP. Decent eye. Good speed and durability.
allright says: He should find a comfortable Big League niche as a bottom of the order hitter with better than average defensive skills and below average leadership potential. His age and college background should have him ready for the Big Show within three seasons.
hurricane384’s take: I can’t really find a whole lot to say. I wish he excelled in one aspect of the game.
23.   P Darren Brumbaugh (CSP)
Lacks ideal control. Solid stamina/durability. Good splits. Good velocity. Good pitch combination.
joekendall had no comment.
hurricane384’s take: If his control were better this would be an absolute steal. For now though, he’s going to be a frustrating player.
24.   P Tom Craig (CLB)
Decent pitch combination. Good stamina/durability. Good splits. Lacks velocity. Decent GB pitcher.
anml34 says: The pitcher I got late in the first was at number 9 on my big board so I was happy with the value there.
hurricane384’s take: I’d be throwing the party of the century to have landed this guy with this late of a pick. Not an ace, but a solid pitcher.
25.   P Hersh Carson (CHR)
Good durability/stamina. Great pitch combination. Great splits and velocity. Great control.
hopkinsheel says: River Dogs Management are pretty pleased that Carson was available when they picked late in the first round. Although we wish he threw more ground balls, his combination of splits, pitches, control, and velocity make him a prime closing prospect down the road. We feel like we got great value here.
hurricane384’s take: This is a great value pick. Not a whole lot to say here other than he’s going to give up some dingers.
26.   CF Flash Baker (NO)
Good range, weak glove. Solid arm. Good speed. Good splits. Durable. Solid contact. Average power. Solid eye.
balance71 says:
Flash Baker projects to be an outstanding defensive second baseman, with extraordinary range and an outstanding glove. His versatility as a defender is limited by his unremarkable arm, but he could be outstanding in CF and LF, too. He projects to be a solid hitter with a good eye and strong baserunning skills. Unfortunately, his penchant for fascist political theory and the dance moves of Justin Bieber may diminish his popularity in the clubhouse.
hurricane384’s take: Good pick. Glove might not develop as much as I would like.
27.   P Steve Olson (LOU)
Solid stamina/durability combo. Good splits. Good velocity. Solid pitch combo. GB pitcher. Lacks ideal control.
hurricane384 says: I’m happy to land Olson this late. Might not be a #1, but definitely should develop into a good #2 or #3.
hopkinsheel’s take: Solid selection this late in the first round. Wish his control projected higher, but with decent splits and a big #1 pitch, he should be a part of the Louisville rotation eventually, even if its towards the back end.
28.   2B Sammy Lopez (HON)
Durable. Good power. Solid contact. Good splits. Decent eye. Average range. Weak arm.
bighead34 had no comment.
hurricane384’s take: Definitely a solid pick up this late. Could be a gold glove COF who can hit pretty well too.
29.   3B Dallas Shields (LV)
Lacks ideal glove or range. Durable. Strikes out a ton. Good power. Dominates LHP. Good against RHP. Good eye.
tk21775 says: Probably more of a RF than a 2B, has some power and should hit well against lefties.
hurricane384’s take: Even though his contact is low, this is a good value pick this deep into the draft.
30.   P Nick Sveum (ROC)
Lacks ideal control, decent stamina/durability. Good splits. Throws hard. Great pitch combination.
bonk36: Nick Sveum is a good value pick late in the draft, we believe he can be a #4 starter when he matures and was willing to sign for below slot which was important due to budget constraints.
hurricane384’s take: This is a solid pick this late. I would like to see more groundballs out of him.
31.   CF Damon Clark (ATL)
Lacks ideal range or glove. Durable. Makes great contact. Little power. Good splits. Good eye. Fast.
mr_gone had no comment.
hurricane384’s take: Although I wouldn’t play him in CF, he could be a pretty good COF if you’re willing to forgo power out of those positions.
32.   P Jesse Salazar (CIN)
Solid pitch combo. Good durability/stamina. Good splits. Lacks ideal velocity.
cmthieme says: Another ho-hum setup guy that reminds you why it sucks to pick at the end of the round in a shallow draft pool.
hurricane384’s take: Can’t really argue with cmthieme here.