Tuesday, August 5, 2014

AL EAST - Season #30 Preview

Baltimore Renegades -

The Baltimore Renegades have made the playoffs ELEVEN straight seasons, but still have not won a World Series Championship.  Last season, the team had two 20-game winners in Niko Kirby and Octiavio Valenzulea and that still wasn't enough to even get them to the World Series (let alone win it). This  off-season, Baltimore finally made the decision to start rebuilding.  Kirby, Valenzuela, and Achley are gone (along with their massive contracts).  The Renegades still have a decent core of productive ballplayers, but their window of opportunity closed last year.  The team is still determined to play well and do their best, but without a true staff Ace it will be tough. 

Owner/GM Terry Swayne front loaded many of the team's lomg-term contracts and the team has a lot of "friendly salary cap numbers to work with for the next 4-5 seasons.  The revamped Renegades line-up is still the strength of the team, but it is much younger than in year's past.

The line-up projects as followed...
(1) Derek Tanner CF
(2) Peter Carlson 2B
(3) Juan Tabata LF
(4) Artie Bukvich DH
(5) Benji Aquilera RF
(6) Ty Scanlan 1B
(7) Al Matos C

(8) David Vargas 3B
(9) Juan Guzman SS

The five-man bench is flexible with C-Bernie Rosado, 2B/OF- Stewart Hall, 3B/OF-Michael Weiland, OF- Clarence Christopher, and IF-Jumbo Noesi. 



Baltimore's revamped rotation is led by LHP- Johan Heredia, who was lost early last season to Tommy John surgery.  Newly aquired RHP'S-Harry Mateo and Jin Ho Uehara replace Kiby and Valenzuela in the rotation, while RHP's-Rashun Gonzalez and Juan Duran round out the rotation.

CoCo Reagan was reaquired last season and will be Baltimore's closer again this season.  The set-up men will be lefty Hal Alexander and righties Frank Maurer, Albert Ramirez, and Derrik Easley,  LHP-Willie Estrada will be the emergency starter and long man in the bullpen again this season.

Top Rookie- NONE
 
Key Players Lost- RHP-Octavio Valenzuela (trade), LHP- Niko Kirby (trade), 1B-Emmitt Collins (trade), 2B-Rickey Atchley (trade), SS-Sean Waters (trade), and RF-Cory Thomas (retired).

Key Players Acquired- RHP-Derrik Easley (trade), Harry Mateo (trade), RHP-Jin Ho Uehara (trade), 2B-Jumbo Noesi (FA), 3B-David Vargas (FA), CF-Clarence Christopher (FA), AND LF-Juam Tabata (trade).
 
Key Off-Season Transaction- The trades of veteran players like Niko Kirby, Octavio Valenzuela, Emmitt Collins, and Ricky Atchley were long overdue.  Baltimore was trying to keep playoff hopes alive with big payrolls and aging players.  They finally move in a different direction and hope to rebuild quickly.  




Hartford #Team Cutters - 

It looks like it's time to make a run in Hartford. After 21 games, AAA will look a little bare as almost all prospects make the jump, including spring training IFA Raul Ortiz. Hopefully this will at least result in a playoff appearance.

Charlotte Knights -







Huntington Hitmen -

AL NORTH - Season #30 Preview

Detroit Wolverines -

The Wolverines finished under .500 last season and took a new approach, letting several high to mid- priced players go in Free Agency then demoting a couple of aged veterans to make way for a rookie class and younger players who were backups last season the chance to get some time on the field and see how they perform. The team still features a few vets that can rake including INF Edgar Valdes and LF Johnny Henley. The pitching is not a strength nor a huge weakness. The Starting Pitching is led by veterans Teddy Martin and longtime Wolverine Horacio Sierra. The closer is longtime stalwart Harry Cortes. The Wolverines should be a middle of the road team and depending on how the younger players perform could look to move veterans at the trade deadline or become players to add some veteran talent. 


Key Additions: 1B Darron McConell(Rookie), 2B Enrique Castillo(Rule 5 Draft), SS Joaquin Cordero(Rookie), SP Kirk Brown(FA), SP Elston Springer( FA), RP Welington Vasquez(Rookie), RP Lyle Millwood(FA)

Key Losses: CF Tim Taylor(FA), C Anthony Hiatt(FA), SP Rickey Simms(FA), RP Felipe Martin(FA), SP Angel Martin(FA)




Milwaukee Blue Ribbons -





Rochester Rhinos -





Witchita Winners -

AL SOUTH - Season #30 Preview

Houston Wranglers -







Jacksonville Jaguars -





Little Rock Rockabillies -






Montgomery Cornbread On The Brain -

AL WEST - Season #30 Preview

Anaheim Aardvarks -




Las Vegas Gamblers -





Salem Slayers -





Salt Lake City Movers & Shakers -

Monday, August 4, 2014

NL EAST - Season #30 Preview

Syracuse Orange Crush -

The Syracuse Orange Crunch have a new stadium, new name and are the team of mystery this season. They could have a great year or a disappointing one depending upon how their new 2B Richard Osuna does for them. Does he earn that contract or not?



Florida Dolphins -




Richmond Spiders -





Washington D.C. Whalers -

NL NORTH - Season #30 Preview

Fargo Sno Balls -

A senior laden team, with most in their 30's, an overall ranking of 22 out of 32 teams, and a modest budget, Fargo is rebuilding as evidenced by their AA & HiA teams leading their leagues. So while these major leaguers enjoy eating the "Sno Ball" cupcakes one last time, the future looks younger, slimmer, and much more talented!





Montreal Bloody Sox -

Building off of last years progress with a younger group of players, our organization will be featuring 5 rookies this year. A rule r draft pick in Sammy Gill, 2 international signings Raul Flores and Onelki Viciedo and 2 draft picks in Marc Detwiler and clean up man James Hawkins. We are also very excited that we have been able to lock up closer Wilin Lee for a couple more years and bring back speed daemon Charles Scarsone. With the addition of Kevin Aoki to our pitching rotation we have a young strong front to build off of and hope to be taking the division in the next 2 years.




Cleveland Rockers -




Minnesota Norsemen -

NL SOUTH - Season #30 Preview

Monterrey Border Jumpers -

Monterey will try to improve this year and make a deeper run in the playoffs. Last years first round exit was disappointing. The Border Jumpers have a nucleus of yound pitchers including Christy Hampton, Melky Quixote, and Hector Sierra. 
 
 

Also on the farm waiting for the call is Dayan Henriquez. Ozzie Calderon, Antonio Choi, Sidney Shields and Albie Fernandez are all young hitters heading for stardom




Jackson Jayhawks -



 

Kansas City Googly Mooglies -





Mexico City Hombres Azul -

NL WEST - Season #30 Preview


Honolulu Rainbow Warriors -

The Honolulu Rainbow Warriors felt great about their chances this season after eating Ricky Atchley's terrible contract in order to acquire ace Octavio Valenzuela.

Then Valenzuela blew out his elbow. Now we have no faith in anything.

The end.




Seattle Somethings -

S30 marks the 4th season that Seattle is under pjfoster13 leadership, and rumors of ownership's unrest persist. While the Mariners are experiencing the tease of rebirth midway thru 2014, the Somethings have yet to taste that type of contention. However, GM Foster points to the overall strength of the depth chart and organizational control as signs of substantial progress.

Management expects a slew of ML-caliber prospects to hit the majors within the next 2 seasons. The ML roster is finally turning over with some of the fruits of its patient development labor. Two first year players and two solid rookies with legitimate expectations start the season in the bigs, and another three major pieces from a AAA team that won 105+ games are scheduled to arrive about two dozen cycles into the season.

External roster moves have been kept to a minimum since mid-S29 blockbuster with Omaha, although some insiders believe the winds of pre-season trade rumors continue to hover over Safeco like springtime clouds coming in off the Pacific.

After buying into the hype of expectations that were set way too high in S29, Seattle's jaded yet restless diehard fanbase appears prepared for another postseason-less campaign, but serial optimists will point to the depth of the starting rotation and the quantity & quality of incoming prospects to argue that Seattle could, in theory, approach 80-85 wins if given the right combination of roster adjustments, player development, and luck. Recent history shows that the 6th and final playoff spot is within range of this win target.

Outlook: In transition


Acquisitions: Rule 5 COF Kevin Martin (former 1st round pick with great speed, good defense, and servicable bat)
Subtractions: LHRP Valerio Prieto (FA)
top ML players: Starting rotation. 2B Ringo Bradley. C Rodrigo Campos, 1B Vicente Ciriaco
top rookies: RHRP Reggie Page, SS Mateo Nunez (AAA), RF Lenny Parkers (AAA), LF Marc Oswalt (AAA)


Colorado Evil Empire -




Omaha Thunderbirds -

Thursday, April 24, 2014

AL EAST - Season #29 Preview

Baltimore Renegades -
The AL East gets tougher and tougher every year.  Last season, the Baltimore Renegades finished second in the AL East with 92 wins and barely clinched the last AL Wild Card spot.  The Renegades have made the playoffs TEN straight seasons, but despite that REGULAR SEASON success, they still have not won a World Series Championship. This off-season, Baltimore made an effort to bolster their starting rotation and upgrade an aging line-up that was unproductive and "flat" in the playoffs. 

The Renegades have a decent core of productive ballplayers, but their window of opportunity is quickly closing.  Owner/GM Terry Swayne has done an excellent job of front-loading many of the team's long-term contracts.  Financially, Baltimore is in great shape for many seasons to come, but with no minor league talent in the pipeline, this team has three seasons maximum to win a World Series.

The revamped Renegades line-up is still the strength of the team. The line-up projects as followed...
(1) Rickey Atchley LF
(2) Wiki Rivas        RF
(3) Peter Carlson    3B
(4) Artie Bukvich   DH
(5) Emmitt Collins  1B
(6) Al Matos            C 
(7) Mark Lee          CF 
(8) Vin Ellsbury     2B
(9) Sean Waters      SS
The five-man bench is flexible with C-Bernie Rosado, 1B-Craig Cook, 1B/LF-Cory Thomas, 2B/CF-Terry Ramirez, and UT-Jose Guzman.  
 

Baltimore's strong rotation is anchored by 4 potential Hall Of Famers.  RHP- Octavio Valezuela and LHP-Ben Bolton return to anchor the Baltimore rotaion along with newly acquired LHP's- Niko Kirby and Willie Estrada to give the Renegades the best starting rotation they have ever had.  Rounding out the last spot of the rotation is RHP-Rashun Gonzalez.  Unfortunately, LHP- Johan Heredia will be lost for the entire season after having Tommy John Surgery today.  The 24 year old showed great promise last season and this will be a major blow. 

Darrin Roth lost his closer role last season and will set-up fellow lefty Hal Alexander this season.  The other set up men are righties Frank Maurer, Charles Okajima, and Herb Leary.  Roth and rookie Ozzie Hasegawa are the lefties in the pen this season. 


Top Rookie- None
 
Key Players Lost- RHP-Hector Carroll (FA), RHP-Milt Gagne (FA), RHP-JT LeCure (trade), LHP-Tim Leiter (trade), LHP- DJ Webster (trade), 1B-Scott Simontacchi (FA), AND 3B/OF-Derrek Henderson (trade).
 
Key Players Acquired- RHP-Herb Leary (FA), LHP-Willie Estrada (FA), LHP-Ozzie Hasegawa (trade), LHP- Niko Kirby (trade), 2B- Vin Ellsbury (FA),  SS-Sean Waters (FA), 2B/LF-Ricky Atchley (trade), and DH-Artie Bukvich.
Key Off-Season Transaction- Acquiring Niko Kirby and Ricky Atchley adds the veteran leadership that has been sorely lacking these last few seasons.  Ricky Atchlety's $20M per year price tag may look horrible in a season or two, but the goal in Baltimore is to win now.



Hartford #Team Cutters  -

The outlook for the Hartford #TeamCutters is somewhere between bad and poor. After finishing out the season 51-11 with a GM coaching change during the middle of last season, the team is hoping to best that record because it can’t get much worse.  Or could it? 
 

With key acquisitions numbering zero, the team has not put forward much effort at the major league level. There are still some starting pitching signings that need to happen before the end of spring training.  Luckily, there was not much to lose from last year and the only contributor lost was Otis Reese, who will get to apply his craft in Cincinnati while Hartford added a couple of prospects for their trouble.


The minor leagues are brimming with talent and that talent should be making the move to the majors next season. SS Brad Craig and SP Paul Brow lead a star-studded AAA team that is looking to repeat their regular season division win from a season ago. So, at the end of the day, the short term future is not looking that bright, but starting next year, the team should be able to put together a very competitive team with eyes towards a division championship, if not more, at the major league level.

 
 
 
 
Charlotte Knights -
 
 
 







Huntington Hitmen -

AL NORTH - Season #29 Preview

Witchita Winners

I think My lineup this year if we can stay healthy will be a above average scoring bunch , Got alot of solid hitters up and down the lineup with a good mix of speed and power, the right guys have the durability to play the majority of the year so should see some excellent seasons from af ew guys....My Starting staff is gonna be my downfall, not alot of depth, only 2-3 Deep with ... Have my controversial 21 year old Future major league SP on the back burner Fernando alomar who ideally i can bring up next year after a lil jump in ratings...Ivan Nunez future stud closer in High A, david hayes in AAA , along with rudy hernandez future well rounded SS and sammy Melian future starting ML 3b are all exciting up and comers....I predict a 70-75 win season for my future year in this world, If my staff can somehow piece it together cause i am confident in my bullpen arms, Stud arm im turning into a closer Juan duran, ideally a 2 inning closer as well...i think i can squeek 80 wins in...well see! Good luck to you this year as well!




Detroit Wolverines -




Milwaukee Blue Ribbons -





Rochester Rhinos -

AL SOUTH - Season #29 Preview

Little Rock Rockabillies -

The Rockabillies are looking to make a significant improvement in their record this season having added some veterans and bringing up some young pitching prospects. The team added slugger Wilson Wise through free agency and traded young pitching for B.C. Brito. Most of the key players are returning including a healthy Gene Cassidy, Walter Rogers, and ROY Mickey Dydalewicz. Javier Lee was the long top prospect in the system who is coming off a bit of a disapointing rookie campaign but big things are expected this year. Also added is top pitching prospect Aneury Bonifacio who will slide right into the rotation and hopefully become the ace of the young staff.




Houston Wranglers -








Jacksonville Jaguars -






Montgomery Cornbread On The Brain -